The FIR’s 2018 AGM took place on 25th August in Zurich – the minutes of the AGM can be seen HERE.
Below is a message from the new FIR Executive President:
At this year’s AGM, Kresten Hougaard stood down after completing his 3 year term as President. As I said to all those at the AGM, it is impossible to understand how much work, time and effort is involved in running the FIR and Kresten has done this over the last 3 years purely as a volunteer. In 2016 Kresten put his hand up to take over as President because no-one else was willing to do it. He wanted to help the sport that he loved playing and so over the last 3 years Kresten has faced the reality of arriving at every tournament with a longer and longer list of people that wanted to talk endlessly to him about all things Racketlon.
It is not easy being the head of a sport that has such a close-knit community who are all so passionate about their sport – it means there are always a lot of ideas, a lot of meetings and a lot of people to try and keep happy. We should all be incredibly thankful that Kresten agreed to take over 3 years ago – for the time, energy and no little skill that he has put into running the FIR which has enabled all of us to keep playing the sport we are all so hopelessly addicted to.
A special mention should also go to Graham King who has also put in an incredible amount of work and time over the last 3 years, helping Kresten and the FIR stay afloat. I’m particularly happy that Graham will continue as my Vice President going forward – with Graham involved we are all in safe hands!
I’m also very happy that Kresten has agreed to stay on to help me as part of the Council as ‘Head of Delegates” which will see him head up a new, smaller team of delegates that will work closely with Tournament Directors to bring a more consistent and more professional approach to our World Tour tournaments and which should ultimately lead to a better, more enjoyable experience for all the players.
Also new to the Council is an official Player’s Representative role which is being filled by Dan Busby (GBR) and supported by Natalie Paul (GER). Their aim is to represent the needs, ideas, any complaints or thoughts of our players straight to the Council for discussion. Over the coming year they will also be approaching the players to find out their thoughts and feedback about a whole range of different ideas that the FIR may look to introduce.
The full new FIR Council can be seen HERE
The 2019 World Tour should be announced within the next 14 days – we have worked very hard to bring new tournaments, new destinations and some new ideas so 2019 should be a great year.
I also have a long list of things to work on – some of this includes: the structure of our world championships, our membership system, developing Racketlon outside of Europe and of course everyone’s favourite topic, our Ranking system – very easy to describe what’s wrong with it, not so easy to describe how exactly to fix it!
However, the key aim above all that I want to achieve over the next 3 years is simply to get more people talking about and discussing Racketlon. Nearly everyone who runs, swims or cycles has heard of Triathlon and yet only a very small percentage of people who play TT, badminton, squash or tennis has heard of Racketlon.
That is precisely what we need to change – there is such a huge worldwide community of people who play the 4 Racketlon sports and we simply need them to know about Racketlon. A key part of achieving this will be through social media and plans are now being put in place for the FIR to find the funding to launch a fully professional, long-term social media marketing plan.
With greater, general awareness of Racketlon, all sorts of benefits will come: more players, more tournaments, more funding, more sponsorship and more official recognition. But first things first, we have to create that awareness.
Another key way we are going to create that awareness is through our existing playing community. We will need your help: we need you sharing information about Racketlon, posting videos and links describing what is you do and why it is your friends and family hardly ever see you anymore!
We will announce the launch of a Racketlon Awareness campaign starting in a few months’ time where we will provide you everything you need to help us tell the world about Racketlon and how they can get involved.
Watch out for that and I look forward to seeing you at a tournament soon.
Duncan Stahl / FIR Executive President