Spanish windsurfers: will they sail in Rio de Janeiro

Controversy, mistakes and general confusion. The world of windsurfing and kiteboarding is living the worst nightmare over a place in the 2016 Olympic Games.


Days after the ISAF decision to get kiteboarders a chance in the Olympic sailing event, the Royal Spanish Sailing Federation (RFEV) announced that their representative, Gerardo Pombo, voted against instructions at the mid-year ISAF meeting, held last week.

"Spain has supported and supports the continuation of windsurfing in the 2016 Olympic Games. In the last years, RFEV has invested heavily in the development of future windsurfing talents, through a national modernization plan", the statement tells.

"Also, in the current Spanish Olympic Sailing Team we have some of the best windsurfers in the world who have been serious contenders for a medal in the Olympic Games".

"At the last moment, the Spanish representative in the ISAF Council expressed his affirmative vote for kiteboarders, an error explained by the confusion of the voting system. Gerardo Pombo, the RFEV president, wants to apologize to all Spanish windsurfers for that".

If the result of the voting was 19-17, this means windsurfing and kiteboarding would be tied. At the same time, it would be unfair to remove kiteboarding from the 2016 Olympic Games after all the celebrations. Having both wind sports in Rio de Janeiro is the most reasonable decision.