Tom Duggan (USA) Discusses PRO Appointment for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

On December 5, World Sailing announced the Race Officials appointed to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing competition.

Per World Sailing, 60 International Race Officials from 31 nations will be spread across Technical Delegates, Race Management Team, International Jury, and Technical Committee- with an additional Event Disciplinary Investigating Officer.

Tom Duggan (East Sandwich, Mass.) of the USA will head the Race Management Team as the Principal Race Officer (PRO). Duggan was PRO at the Ready Steady Tokyo – Sailing Olympic test event in August and has many years of international experience across the sport.

Duggan, along with Deputy PRO Maria Torrijo (Spain), will lead a team of six International Race Officers as Course Representatives, responsible for running the racing for each of six racing areas, with 12 additional International Race Officers supporting the team.

Jeff Johnson (San Diego, Calif.) of the USA will join Duggan as a member of the Race Management Team.

Read the full World Sailing report.

US Sailing connected with Duggan to discuss this exciting role and the task ahead.

On participating in race management at this level:

“I guess I enjoy being involved with such a high-level group of sailors and race officials. Everyone is working their hardest to do the best job possible. No one wants to be the person who lets the group down. It’s stimulating, fun and sometimes a bit scary.”

On accepting the Olympic PRO job:

“I have been very involved with this race management group for about a dozen years now. The PRO job isn’t really something you choose to accept. It is a bit like riding in a Peloton – you draft behind the front row for as long as you can- but you know sooner or later you will have to spend some time at the front.”

On training and preparation for the job:

“Olympic Class Championships, Sailing World Cup Series events, Sailing World Championships, and Olympic Test events all follow similar formats to the Olympic Games. I have served both as a Course Representative and a Principal Race Officer at all those events, including the Olympic Trials and Test Events for several Olympic cycles. I have also served as a Course Representative at the Rio Games and as PRO at the Rio Paralympics. Over the last few years, I have traveled to the 2020 Olympic venue at Enoshima five times as PRO for Sailing World Cup events and Olympic Test Events – in addition to participating in race management training clinics and seminars for the local race management teams.

At the Games I will be supported by an excellent group of International Race Officers, the World Sailing staff, the Tokyo 2020 staff, and a large group of enthusiastic and skilled local race management volunteers. In theory, I have a pretty good idea of what’s coming my way. We’ll see soon enough!”

The Tom Duggan File

  • World Sailing International Race Officer (2004 – Present)
  • US Sailing National Race Officer (2004 – Present)
  • Advanced Race Management Instructor since 2000 (Present)
  • Chair of World Sailing Race Management Subcommittee (Present)
  • US Sailing National Judge (Senior Judge) (1993 – 2014)
  • US Sailing National Umpire (2004 – 2018)
  • World Sailing International Umpire (2006 – 2018)
  • Principal Race Officer, 2016 Paralympic Games Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Principal Race Officer, 2018 Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus, Denmark