Getting to the Olympics is a huge focus for sailors and athletes. There are also now a host of nations actively recruiting when they can.
The Olympics is a competition between nations at it’s core, but increasingly the concept of representing a nation is becoming more fluid.
We ask the question, would you change nations to get to the games?
Some sailors in the 49er and Nacra 17 fleets have already answered that question.
Saskia Tidey represented Ireland in Rio, but with her helms retirement had nobody else to sail with for this quad and was not ready to finish her sailing career. Using her British passport she moved over to the British Sailing Team and is now a contender for her new nation.
Carlos Robles has sailed for Spain in the last quad, and though he didn’t make it to Rio was a part of the Spanish team. This quad he’s teamed up with Marco Grael of Brazil, and since Carlos holds a Brazilian passport they made the switch.
There is also the Aruban 49erFX team from Rio. They decided to part ways as a team, and now Odile van Aaholt sails for the Netherlands and Nicole Van Der Velden sails for Spain. … you should have seen these two debrief last quad, switching effortlessly between four languages!
For the most part in these double handed fleets, switches have been as a matter of finding partnerships, as opposed to finding obscure nations or chasing funding. So have your say, would you change nations?
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The 49er and Nacra 17 Classes are sponsored by Magic Marine. For our fans, we offer the discount code Euros2018 for 18% off all of their excellent sailing gear! Head to our store! This offer expires when the championship ends, so don’t wait.