Riva De Garda withdraws as host of 2020 IODA World Championship

Disruptions In Opti Calendar Worldwide Expected

May 15th, 2020

In an announcement, IODA informed members today that Italy had withdrawn as host of the 2020 Optimist World Championship, scheduled to take place this July at Riva De Garda on the picturesque lake that shares the name. Although the championship was already postponed, this effectively nixes any chance that there will be an Opti Worlds this year.  It also throws into doubt if many classification regattas will continue around the IODA member countries, organizers may see little point in trying to reschedule their classification regattas for the summer. 

Many programs and member countries are echoing the IODA sentiment that this was a prudent move and the sailor's safety is more important. There still remains a chance that a new host will be found, but only time will tell as travel restrictions are still very much in effect across the world. 

Full Press Release Below:

Italy Withdraws as Host of the 2020 World Championship

IODA has been informed by the Organizing Committee of the 2020 IODA World Championship that they are unable to host the 2020 IODA World Championship.
Riva del Garda was ready to make the Optimist sailor’s experience an unforgettable World Championship.
We are informed that “IODA Members who have officially registered and made payments for the event will be contacted shortly to start the refund process for entry fees, charter boats and support boats. The fees will be refunded in full, net of bank charges.” 
We would like to thank our Member from Italy, the Associazione Italiana Classe Optimist, as well as the Fraglia Vela Riva with the Riva Fiere Congressi e Garda Trentino, the Italian Sailing Federation (FIV) and the many members of Organizing Committee for all their hard work and support in the planning of the 2020 World Championship. We respect their decision and hope that they will host the event in the future.
With our Member from Italy withdrawing as the host, according to IODA World Championship Condition 7.4, “the IODA Executive Committee shall take such action to appoint an alternative host as it finds necessary.” As a result, the Executive Committee can consider a bid from a Member who might wish to host the 2020 World Championship this year.
If any Member would like to be considered as a host of the 2020 World Championship, please inform the IODA President, Kevin Whitcraft at president@optiworld.org and Fiona Kidd at sec_gen@optiworld.org as soon as possible, but no later than June 8, 2020.
This can follow with the completion of a ‘Bid Form to Host an IODA Championship’ found here and submit it to the IODA Secretariat to the attention of Fiona Kidd, at sec_gen@optiworld.org on or before June 22, 2020
IODA is committed to holding our 2020 Events if possible. However, the IODA Executive Committee will consider the following matters when proceeding with IODA Events in 2020:
  • Safety of our sailors and participants at events
  • Ability of host to organize an event along the World Sailing COVID-19 event guidelines
  • Ability for wide inclusivity of the IODA Members to participate in an event
  • Ensuring the level of IODA standards of on-water racing are met
IODA continues to monitor the COVID-19 situation as it effects our 2020 Events.  Recently many countries have started to open and are providing access to sailing on the water if social distancing and health precautions are maintained. This is good news for Optimist sailors.  
We hope that over the coming weeks we can see borders opening and travel restrictions reduced between countries.  This will enable us to begin to confirm dates of our postponed championships in 2020.