Jan 12, 2012, 12:02 PM
Post #1 of 1
From Reynald Neron:
Sponsorship and offshore sailing
Log-In to Post/Reply
In Scuttlebutt 3504 there are two different and yet similar comments regarding sponsorship and offshore sailing.
Peter Brown tells us that sailors should do everything they can to please the sponsors (for the Volvo Ocean race) while John Harwood-Bee serves us a bit more "Freedom Fries" as he does not understand the value of the Trophe Jules Verne.
Elaine Bunting said (in Scuttlebutt 3502) earlier that Mr Fossett is not mentioned in the Trophe Jules Verne results, and we all know why. I would like to point out that at the time, the organisation managing the Trophe Jules Verne denied that they wanted Mr F to pay more than his competitors. Someone's word against someone else's...
The Trophe Jules Vernes is a marketing tool. The French (and the English) created it to renew the interest of the sponsors for the world record. The French (and the English) have invented offshore sailing as we know it today in the 70s and 80s.
Yet in the 90s, as it was difficult to attract sponsors to pay for ever more costly campaigns, the various French (and English) teams decided to work together to create an event. They gave that event a brand name, and are actively marketing that name, hence creating an interest for the media, and the sponsors. Some of those sailors have been working for 20 years to get to where they are now, and to increase the popularity of sailing in France (and England) to where it is today.
Then comes another sailor, with no problem for financial back up, and only interested in getting another world record. He did get it, and you will find his name on the WSSRC website. No doubt that his performance had to be congratulated, (and as Peter said, it was acknowledged in French media at the time) but did he help in growing the sport of offshore sailing? I think not.
So Mr F did not want to help an organisation that is dedicated in growing the sport in which he is involved. I don't mean here to say that his achievments in sailing (and other areas) should not be admired. I am saying that when you are involved in a field that an organisation has developed for many years, you should support that organisation.