While more and more women are showing on the water that and, above all, how well they can sail, the work of the association is also becoming more and more feminine: At first, MonKüppers was the first woman in the presidency of the German Sailing Association. Now there are more and more state associations that are under the aegis of women: three out of 16 sailing associations are led by women.
In Bavaria, Sibylle Merk is now standing for election as an alternative to the incumbent regional association chairman Dietmar Reeh. There are also two applicants for each of the deputy positions. An election campaign has broken out for the board of directors, which reveals that the Bavarian sailing scene is seething.
Board members terminated Reeh's cooperation and resigned from their offices
After two members resigned from the acting board of the Bavarian Sailing Association (BSV) and since then have only been available as special representatives and two others left as acting representatives, BSV chairman Dietmar Reeh looked for a new team. He will now run for election again at the end of November. His colleagues are now Christian Spöhrer from the Bavarian Yacht Club and Jürgen Jentsch from the Füssen-Forggensee sailing club.
As an alternative, three other candidates were sent into the race by several member associations: Sibylle Merk (Bavarian Yacht Club, Sailing Club Füssen-Forggensee) for the office of chairman of the board as well as for the position of deputy chairmen Markus Reger (Chiemsee-Yacht Club) and Günther Schlegel (Yacht Club Nuremberg).
Since then it has been clear that there is an alternative to running the BSV, it has become apparent in Bavaria that many clubs are dissatisfied with the work of their regional association. In particular, they accuse its President Dietmar Reeh of insufficiently advocating their concerns.
Many allegations against the president, but no open opposition for fear of restrictions
Nobody likes to say that openly, but the displeasure with the YACHT was clearly expressed several times. It is said, for example, that good concepts not only have to be developed and communicated, but also implemented. The regional base concept, for example, is very good, but the implementation must be better. Or in the area of training and instruction, precisely because of Coron, one should not withdraw, but must use the possibilities of digital formats much more, as in the education and training of members of the racing committee.
A critic, who also did not want to be named for fear of future restrictions against his club, told the YACHT: "A modern association management today has to act on the basis of sailing practice for the practice and base of the clubs and does not need blue blazers golden buttons."
While Dietmar Reeh's concept focuses primarily on the large clubs on Lake Starnberg and partly also on Lake Ammersee, many of the 200 or so Bavarian sailing clubs distributed in over 60 areas do not see themselves represented in the current association work.
The trio around Sibylle Merk wants to change that. Spatially distributed all over Bavaria and each with different active sailing careers, the three want to be representatives of all Bavarian sailors and clubs.
Merk wants to focus more on small and medium-sized clubs
Merk, a former cadre sailor and Olympic participant, had initially worked provisionally for the BSV, but then stopped again to run for the office as chairman herself. She emphasizes - in addition to the performance area for which she alone stands for her sailing résumé - the wide range with which the three want to bring the work of the BSV forward with fresh vigor: "Together we cover a wide sailing spectrum from the areas of popular sport low-threshold entry into sailing through inclusion sailing and regatta sport with competitive sport up to recreational sailing. Our common competence offers a good basis to do good association work for all sailing clubs in Bavaria. The big clubs are very important sponsors of sailing, but also in the medium and small clubs are doing an excellent job with a lot of personal commitment."
For this purpose, she has a partner on board in Markus Reger, also a former cadre sailor and already in a temporary position, who wants to give new impetus to youth and young talent with the expansion and adaptation of the DOSB base concept. The third member of the group, Günther Schlegel, comes from Franconia and from popular sports - which would bring a completely different perspective to the work of the association.
This new perspective welcomes Hermann Wimmer, chairman of the Chiemsee-Yacht-Club, who proposed the new candidates, among others. He sees a "lifetime opportunity" in Merk: "Sibylle Merk is a huge opportunity for Bavarian sailors and the Bavarian Sailing Association. Due to her personality, her sailing successes and her professional successes, she is predestined for this position. With a fresh spirit it will bring new momentum. In times like these it is not about preserving the old, but about shaping the future. Merk brings a new wind and is exactly the right person to set a course for the future, "says Wimmer, justifying the advance of the CYC to break new ground for the FSIO.
Reeh emphasizes his successes and urges a "business as usual"
Dietmar Reeh, in turn, would like to continue running the FSIO as it began in the past legislative period. "My previous work focuses on youth, popular sport, charitable status and sustainability should continue to shape the work of the board in the future," he promised the delegates. In the interview he emphasizes the positive balance of his first legislative period: "We have done our homework, which not necessarily every sailor sees immediately, but which is sustainable for the future of sailing in Bavaria. My team and I understand the Bavarian Sailing Association as Service organization for the clubs."
The clubs have until November 26th to cast their votes by postal vote, after which they will be counted. In total, half of all voting rights of the clubs must be given for the election to be valid. A great opportunity for the smaller clubs that might not have come specially for a face-to-face event.
Reeh adopts positions of the competitor
It remains to be seen whether there will be further position papers, live video presentations or the like by the end of the election period. At least at the beginning of the election call, after Sibylle Merk had sent the BSV her concise position paper for a presentation on the association's website, an interview with the BSV chairman Ditmar Reeh appeared there. In it he now describes the points mentioned by Merk as his own.
A question mark arises mainly from the team constellation of the two trios. Because in board elections no groups are elected, but individuals, item by item. In the election letter, however, Reeh, Spörer and Jentsch have announced that they will only accept the election in this constellation. Merk and Reger, on the other hand, assure that they will be available for their offices even if the other should not be elected.
Reeh and his colleagues only want to be elected together
If the result actually results in such a mixture and then Reeh, Spörer and Jentsch would make their announcement come true and reject the acceptance of the offices offered to them, this would result in a repetition of the election. When the YACHT asked Reeh whether he would actually insist on his announcement if the worst came to the worst, he had BSV press chairman Torsten Fricke answered. But he was not ready to make a clear statement. This is "a speculative question if one would not answer it per se," says Fricke.
The Bavarian sailors should look forward to the virtual general meeting on November 27th with excitement. Then it will show whether the majority has opted for the "breath of fresh air" promised by the trio around Sibylle Merk or would rather stick to the course taken by the previous incumbent Dietmar Reeh and his team.