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Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507605
09/19/15 08:16 AM
09/19/15 08:16 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 2,208
san pedro, Belize
collyk Offline
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collyk  Offline
This is exciting news, not just for the incredible young people who are representing Belize, but for all of Belize!


www.conchcreative.com
Belize Wedding Photography

Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507615
09/20/15 04:53 AM
09/20/15 04:53 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 58,984
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

BzSA revokes decision against allowing Blanca Velasquez to attend Youth Worlds Championship scholarship

After much controversy, the Belize Sailing Association (BzSA) Board of Directors has voted to allow current Belize National Optimist Champion, Blanca Velasquez from participating at the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Emerging Nations Youth World’s Championship Regatta. Velasquez received the opportunity to participate at the championship after attending the ISAF Laser Clinic in Antigua and Barbuda in July 2015, where participants were awarded scholarships. Scheduled to take place from December 27, 2015 to January 3, 2016 in Langawi, Malaysia, the championship sees the participation of sailors from across the world and provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for youth.


Initially. BzSA has highlighted several reasons for not allowing Velasquez to participate, but the San Pedro Sailing Club (SPSC) believes none are substantial. In an email to all member sailing clubs, BzSA sought opinion from the individual clubs on the decision they had taken. “At the beginning of the year BzSA was fortunate enough to be offered two scholarship places for sailors to attend a clinic in Antigua and Barbuda, Eastern Caribbean. This later manifested the decision of ISAF that the places be awarded to a boy and a girl. Training and Trials were held in San Pedro with the outcome after a number of races resulting in Antonio Ricardez Jr. as Best Male and Blanca Velasquez as Best Female. Velasquez was the only eligible female in the group. The sailors duly went to Antigua for the experience of a lifetime. For a number of days Velasquez was unable to sail the Laser Radial and was required to sail the smaller laser. The basic reason for this is that she is 104 pounds (lb.) and not the recommended 121lb for this rig. The clinic is for sailors of the laser radial rig and the board felt that she was not capable at this time of meeting the requirements of the Malaysia competition. In addition, a video was widely circulated showing that on one capsize the centerboard was not properly rigged and fell out. The trainers requested BzSA to remove the video from several sailing clubs as they felt it did not promote sailing and it was felt that taking a boat that was not rigged properly demonstrated poor judgement by the sailor considering her number of years of experience. It should also be a consideration that Vasquez has an injury with her knee,” stated BzSA Chair, Sharon Hardwick. BzSA is ISAF Member National Authority for Belize and thus is in charge with confirming the sailors’ participation at such events.

But SPSC has indicated that BzSA actions are only serving to sabotage the sailors as they had rightfully earned those scholarships. “Anyone should realize that a 14 year old girl (now 15) is going to continue to grow and gain weight. And if she had a hurt knee two months ago it was bound to heal. At this time Blanca has exceeded the 121lb limit and her knee is fully healed. Because she was lightweight and it was very windy in Antigua and Barbuda she had a difficult time with the conditions, but in Malaysia the conditions will be perfect as it will be calm seas and wind will be between 4-6 knots. Velasquez showed tenacity and courage when her vessel capsized at the ISAF Laser Clinic,” said Amanda Syme, secretary of SPSC.

It was further explained that the deadline to submit confirmation for the scholarships of both Velasquez and Ricardez was on September 11th. “We are unsure if ISAF will be able to extend the deadline. The scholarship was awarded by ISAF and there is no cost to be borne by BzSA. The clubs, families and sponsors have already committed to paying the additional expenses involved with sending both sailors together with the costs of a professional coach. BzSA, as the Member National Authority was expected to merely rubber stamp the acceptance of the scholarships. The Youth Worlds Championship is a stepping stone towards eventual participation in the Commonwealth Games, Pan American Games and ultimately the Olympics.

The opportunities of travel, the experience of meeting youth leaders/sailors from countries around the world who all have a passion for sailing and being exposed to the global sailing culture is crucial for the sailors to make useful contacts in the sailing community. More importantly, regardless of ranking in the championship, many of the participants are offered college scholarships and job opportunities in the sailing world,” said Syme.

In a press release issued on Monday, September 14th, SPSC’s Commodore Andrew Milner asked for support from the sailing community on this incident. “Why did the Board of Directors of BzSA deny our Belizean youth permission to accept and utilize these scholarships? These children have lost the opportunity of a lifetime. Attending the ISAF Youth Worlds Championship is a stepping stone toward Belizean sailors attending the Olympics. Velasquez and Ricardez have trained for five years to achieve their successes and they earned the scholarships. The positive impact of traveling, meeting children from different countries and cultures that are united by the love for sailing is educational and empowering. It is unconscionable that the BzSA board refused Velasquez the right to accept the award and squandered Ricardez’ chance of attending also,” said Milner.

But on Thursday, Spetember 17th BzSA issued a press statement in which they indicated that Velasquez would be allowed to participate. “The Belize Sailing Association Board reconvened to

reconsider the matter concerning our sailor Blanca Velasquez to attend ISAF Youth World

Championship in December, 2015. The BzSA Board members voted unanimously to officially sanction the attendance of Ms. Blanca Velasquez at this event along with team-mate Antonio Ricardez Jr. After much deliberation the BzSA Board agrees both candidates are ready and are expected to conduct themselves appropriately and represent Belize to the best of their ability. The BzSA Chairwoman will be the head of the delegation,” stated the release.

ISAF has extended the deadline until for BzSA to confirm attendance of the sailors to Friday, September 25th.

San Pedro Sun


Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507885
09/29/15 11:16 AM
09/29/15 11:16 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 58,984
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

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Marty  Offline OP

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. hardwicksharon@hotmail.com

Keith Hardwick. khhdwk@gmail.com

Tammy Peterson Lemus. 610-0226. tammyinbelize@yahoo.com

Gerard Cordts. 665-5121. gerardcordts@hotmail.com

Trenton Miller. 631-9134. trenteesh@yahoo.com

--------------

Tony Ricardez, father of sailor Antonio Ricardez. 605-2668. tricardez@gmail.com

Niamath (pronounced like Yamat) Hajjara is Blanca Velasquez' mother. She answers to Mrs. Velasquez, too. Her number is 622-2285.


Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507889
09/29/15 12:07 PM
09/29/15 12:07 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,477
S
SimonB Offline

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SimonB  Offline
S
Seriously? This is how adults behave?

Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: SimonB] #507890
09/29/15 12:28 PM
09/29/15 12:28 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 959
Fishers, Indiana UISA
L
lovey and thurston Offline
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lovey and thurston  Offline
L
This is hard to believe.


R.B. Mernitz
Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507930
09/30/15 01:44 PM
09/30/15 01:44 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 16
M
Marius Offline
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Marius  Offline
M
Who are these pathetic people on the Belize sailing associations board? Adults acting like spoiled kids! I feel so sorry for these young sailors being subject to petty politics from small minded people.

Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #507996
10/03/15 05:29 AM
10/03/15 05:29 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 58,984
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

.
Marty  Offline OP

Belize Sailing Association denying chaperons to kids

Having been a Chaperon before, it makes no sense why these two great kids would be denied their chaperon and coach to accompany them on such a long journey and hep motivate and encourage them through the race. Adult supervision and mentoring is hugely important especially when traveling such a great distance to be in such a big race.

I have to wonder if the people on the BzSA Board who have their own children would place them in such a situation? Apparently not … The BzSA Chairwoman personally chaperoned her own son to Antigua, West Indies, for the regatta there this summer. And she made sure that Juan Mazzini – the best professional coach in Belize was fully authorized by BzSA to be there for her son, officially. Their “double speak” on not standing in the way, but yet not authorizing the coach’s or chaperon’s status is ridiculous.

A Facebook message from Peachie is what got this whole post happening. She messaged me to ask if I had heard the recent news ( I had) and was willing to help take a stand ( I was). I decided to do the above write up and in addition asked Peachie to weigh in since she was so passionate about the cause, and is a mother herself.

Sailing literally puts the entire world in your backyard. The knowledge and skills can be life altering. Belize is known for diving and snorkeling. Belize can also be known around the world for sailing. The exposure that Blanca and Antonio will give to the world sailing community is priceless.

It is therefore with astonishment I follow the unfolding saga where BzSA appears to be sabotaging their very own sailors. I assume the BzSA main goal is to promote sailing in Belize. With this in mind, it seems unbelievable that 2 young Belizean sailors who have won full scholarships be denied what they’ve worked for. It seems pretty obvious that something else is going on especially since the BzSA is not required to spend a cent! It seems that from day one, the BzSA has done everything in their power to obstruct these young sailors from attending the Youth World Championship Laser Regatta in Malaysia. Anything ranging from “forgetting” the deadline to register to questioning sailors’ abilities and now denying coaches authorization is a sample of what the BzSA is willfully doing to stop these kids from attending.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos on Tacogirl's blog!


Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #508003
10/03/15 07:11 AM
10/03/15 07:11 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 959
Fishers, Indiana UISA
L
lovey and thurston Offline
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lovey and thurston  Offline
L
Do the individuals on this board have children involved in sailing? I would guess if their children were selected for this honor they would have met all deadlines and it would have been approved quickly.


R.B. Mernitz
Re: Belizean youth capsizes... watch what she does next [Re: Marty] #508982
11/09/15 05:30 AM
11/09/15 05:30 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 58,984
oregon, spr
Marty Offline OP

.
Marty  Offline OP

Video: Belizean youths to compete in Malaysia

Antonio Recardez and Blanca Velasquez will be competing in the ISAF Youth World Sailing Championship in Malaysia. There will be 5 days of racing December 29 thru January 3rd.


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