Nicolas Hénard : France is the first nation to sail the world - The Point

Set off ! After three months of unused, clubs and schools French sailing resumed gradually their activity for the greatest happiness of the sport of "big air"

Nicolas Hénard : France is the first nation to sail the world - The Point

Set off ! After three months of unused, clubs and schools French sailing resumed gradually their activity for the greatest happiness of the sport of "big air" and professionals of the sector. A reboot that takes place in a strict framework, developed jointly between the ministry of Sport and the French sailing Federation.

Second maritime empire in the world, behind the United States, France is one of the favorite playing grounds of the followers of the veil. And it's just as well ! Since, in this period of health crisis, the sailing is an activity that is considered "low risk" by the medical commission of the international sailing Federation (World Sailing). "We are a sport of the great outdoors and we know that the virus doesn't like the salt," reassures Nicolas Hénard, president of the French sailing Federation (FFV). "In addition, we have communicated widely to ensure that the voileux practice in responsibility, in the application of the instructions of government and the respect of others. It is in the very nature of our sport ", adds the old browser.

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A heavy financial impact

Eager to protect their members, personal and public, the sailing clubs have taken exceptional measures. "We need to wear the mask in the loading and return to earth, but not necessarily for navigation. We reorganized the group arrivals, so that they do not intersect. We have blocked some slots for disinfection of equipment. Finally, the locker rooms will remain closed, and the visitors do not fit in our premises. These are drastic measures, but we do our best ", explains Eric Limouzin, president of the sailing club of Arcachon Circle Sailing (elected as the " French School of sailing of the year 2019 ").

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However, on the financial side, the crisis of the sars coronavirus has heavily impacted the professionals in the sector. "On the 200 000 euros of commercial revenue, we have lost 50 000 euros. We hope to have a great summer season, but we can already say that it is a year wasted, " laments the boss of the Circle of the Sail. All that " if it feels good that people want to come, the sanitary protocols are the real brakes to the practice. So far, the ministry of Sports continued to be very rigid on these issues although our business is considered relatively healthy ".

Objective 500, 000 members by 2024

With 270, 000 members and 3 to 4 million practitioners – numbers-in-progress, the sailing does not cease to attract new followers. In Arcachon, Eric Limouzin welcomes this enthusiasm : "the past few years, there has been a real increase of our numbers, side fired first, side passport, sailing (summer courses) of the other. This represents an increase of between 5% and 10%. "Building on this success, Nicolas Hénard – double olympic champion (1988, 1992) –, does not hide his ambitions :" Our goal is to go to 500, 000 members by the end of the year 2024, surfing in particular on the effect the olympic Games in France. France is a nation's maritime history, the second maritime area in the world. And on the sporting front, when they're not in the English language which shall prevail, the French. If one adds to that the racing, the France is the first nation to sail the world ! "

At an international level, the president shows his appetite overflowing. With the one-year delay of the Tokyo olympic Games, " it was decided to reform the sports Federation. Her code name ? RTPP (Successful Tokyo Prepare for Paris). Tokyo is back in the cycle of preparation of the olympic games 2024. Our ambitions are clear : the meeting in paris should be perfectly managed and we need to achieve excellent results, the best in the history of olympic sailing ". As the president of the FFV, the knows : are these sporting achievement that will attract new practitioners in the wake of the sail. Finally, attentive to the sustainability of its status as a great maritime nation, the FFV bet on the future with the program EHP (Team high Performance). "An ambitious programme to enable top-level athletes to become the athletes who will, in the long term, among the best in the world. "The French skipper is definitely wind in its sails !

Date Of Update: 27 June 2020, 08:33

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