The Board of the Belize Sailing Association Plans to Deprive two Teenage Belizean Sailors of Support Ranging from Highly Valuable to Absolutely Essential
As most of you know from recent posts, it took quite a struggle to get the Board of the Belize Sailing Association (BzSA) to agree to send Antonio Ricardez, 15, of Belize City and Blanca Velasquez, 15, of San Pedro. to the 2015 ISAF Youth World Championship Laser Regatta in Malaysia in December. Now the BzSA Board is denying vital support to the sailors. In part of an email sent today, Monday, Sept. 28, Sharon Hardwick, Chairwoman of Belize Sailing Association (BzSA) tells the International sailing Federation (ISAF) the following:
"The Belize Sailing Association have not sanctioned any Coach reason why we did not registered one.”
“Therefore, I feel this should clarify registration on a go forward basis. No Official Coach sanctioned and No Official Team Lead.”
This consequence of the BzSA Board's decision is clear in an ISAF email on the same date to Sharon Hardwick that says: "Only team leaders and coaches registered and endorsed by an MNA* may register for the event. That means that ‘club’ coaches are not allowed." If qualified people accompany the sailors but are "Not Official" as the Chairwoman says, they'll be "not allowed," reduced to spectators from afar, and the two children will have no coach in a World Championship event and No Chaperone with the appropriate access.
* MNA is Member Nation Authority, e.g., BzSA
Even if the clubs still send the coach and the chaperone that have the sailors' and their parents' full approval, the chaperone, Eva Campos won't be recognized as such and afforded appropriate accommodation with or near Blanca. Hence, she will hardly be able to chaperone at all. And the coach Juan Mazzini will not be allowed at race briefings or anywhere near where he can make sure the rigging is right, or out on the water to suggest rigging adjustments, give tactical advice, correct mistakes, offer encouragement and reminders to focus, or to make sure they have and are using water and energy snacks.
There is no cost or any other inconvenience to BzSA for sending the professional coach who trains the two. The sailors' clubs - Belize City Sailing Club and the San Pedro Racers - will gather and pay all the expenses involved in sending coach Juan Mazzini.
It has been reported to me that one authority not only volunteered to pay for a female chaperone for Miss Velasquez, but that its support for her participation is conditional upon her having a female chaperone. And in case this is inaccurate, the two clubs will raise the funds for the female chaperone also.
You may want to confirm this with the families, but I neither of the families find Sharon Hardwick to be a sympathetic supervisor or chaperone, And by law, it is the parent's who get to decide which adults are acceptable to them in these roles.
Submitting Juan Mazzini and Eva Campos' names to ISAF costs BzSA absolutely nothing. Keeping them out defeats the chaperone concept and unnecessarily deprives the sailors of vital intellectual and emotional support.
BzSA are claiming that it is too late to register these people, but we have an email from ISAF stating that they are still waiting for confirmation.
If the Media can obtain no acceptable explanation from BzSA, perhaps it can bring public pressure to encourage BzSA board members to change their minds.
The BzSA Board
Sharon Hardwick, Chairwoman 624-8529. email@example.com
Keith Hardwick. firstname.lastname@example.org
Tammy Peterson Lemus. 610-0226.
Gerard Cordts. 665-5121. email@example.com
Trenton Miller. 631-9134. firstname.lastname@example.org
Tony Ricardez, father of sailor Antonio Ricardez. 605-2668. email@example.com
Niamath (pronounced like Yamat) Hajjara is Blanca Velasquez' mother. She answers to Mrs. Velasquez, too. Her number is 622-2285.