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- 14/02/2009 at 3:52 pm #3852Steve CollinsMember
Mike McKechnie and I are slowly rebuilding the UKWA race organisation, particularly with the 2010 World Championships in mind. We plan to appoint a Chief Measurer, Assistant Measurer and Umpire for Falmouth 2009, who will also work with us in 2010,
The Measurer will organise light touch scutineering before the event and be available to measure boats and sails as needed.
The umpire will follow the fleet around the course in a RIB and look out for trangressions such as boats hitting marks or each other without taking a penalty, or sailing the wrong course.
After sailing a list of sail numbers will be put on the notice board and the trangressors will be invited to a hearing to put their case. The aim will be to resolve issues through discussion and mediation rather than formal protest.
If we had had an umpire at Poole in 2008, we would have been able to resolve the issue raised in the thread ‘to protest or not to protest’ on this forum.
This level of organisation will increase our expenses, and we propose to add a £20 levy payable to UKWA on top of the £79 entry fee payable to Falmouth, making a total entry fee of £99.
Other classes do this. For example, the Enterprise Championship fee of £150 in 2008 was split £90 to the host club, £60 to the class association.
What to you think? Please add you comments here and/or vote in the poll.17/02/2009 at 9:24 am #7690Colin ParkstoneParticipant
I am not sure about this Steve,
On the plus side it would be in line with other champs that have on water judging.
From how you have put it, is this going to be learning thing when you say we will be invited or a protest with a proper court and hangings if your found guilty.
If were going to have a talk about it after each days racing I fear that as we are a social group we will not feel like it every evening ??
As for cost,again i am not sure that in these hard times we should be taking on a greater level of costing !!!
What your suggest maybe a good move for the class and in time for Worlds for next year.
My doubt is that the champs at Falmouth is not a cheap one already and the added costs for them may not have good timing.
Also, will this cost be on all entries as I think that the non racing people may not see this added cost on them as well in the same light.
The class funds are not,as the resent rundown shows as healthy as we have been in the past and I have no problem with that !,
what I think I am saying is that we have no spare monies for this to come from the class funds so it could only come from the smaller number of people racing to pay for this, 😕
Maybe people could put there views on the forum rather than just vote Yes or No so as to see why they may vote a certain way please.
Me at the moment ? I Abstain!!
C P17/02/2009 at 10:14 am #7691RaySMember
To take the load off the race committee (who want to race!) it is good to have volunteers to do the measuring and it is only fair that these can claim some expenses. It does seem a bit much to have on-water scrutineering for the week. It may be a championship but for most people it is a holiday too. I would hope that we can all sail in good fair (holiday) spirit as we mostly do! Steve – this is not the Enterprise fleet!
RS17/02/2009 at 8:11 pm #7695AnonymousInactive
For what it’s worth, my view after many years of racing in Wayfarers is that the class is friendly on the water and on the whole law-abiding. Infringements can usually be sorted out by discussion after the race. Obviously protests happen and should be encouraged where appropriate but over the years there have been really very few of them. On the water scrutineering seems way over the top.
When (under pressure) I organised a special RYA judge to be in attendance for a Nationals (and we had to pay his expenses) there was nothing for him to do, poor chap. He spent his time posting meaningless changes to the racing instructions on the race notice board.
Keep it simple is my view.17/02/2009 at 8:13 pm #7696LiamMember
If I had any inkling this level of intrusion upon a family oriented Race fleet was planned I would never have even suggested Falmouth as a venue for the Championships. This is intended to be a happy event with good racing, excellent sailing, fun on and off the water with good Race Management by an experienced PRO with a very supportive bunch of volunteers who are fellow club members.
The proposals would spoil the event in my view and my nervousness about the potential for intrusion upon the Falmouth Dinghy Week as a Regatta event, is exacerbated by suggestions put on our website, apparently without prior consultation with other committee members and which unless withdrawn will cause a number of would be competitors to withdraw from the event.
Falmouth Regatta is much bigger than the Wayfarer Fleet and we do not need to set ourselves up as some type of quasi olympic race organisation.
What may be necessary in one fleet does not automatically mean the same is required in another.
I certainly cannot and will not support paying additional money to furnish extra resource to Police us. Rules 2 and 3 of the Racing Rules of Sailing say all that needs to be said about Fair Racing and Acceptance of the Rules. The fleet is well behaved on the whole. The incident at Parkstone was unusual and some lessons were learnt.
Please let us not over-react, the same PRO and his team successfully ran the B14 World Championships last year, they didn’t need any of these extra Police on the water.
Please can this post/thread be withdrawn.
Liam17/02/2009 at 8:21 pm #7697AnonymousInactive
Liam, many of us agree with you. Don’t over-react. This thread is a useful sounding from the class so no need to delete the thread!!17/02/2009 at 9:22 pm #7700LiamMember
Good to see you back on the website! Been a long time, will we see you back on the circuit? I do hope so.
You are right of course, I should be more measured, my fear is of something good unravelling before it gets off the ground!
Liam17/02/2009 at 9:54 pm #7701Colin ParkstoneParticipant
” I Should Be More Measured ” Do not worry Liam, I have my tape
measure ready for you !!!!
” Are You Free Mr Humphries ” 😉
C P20/02/2009 at 8:16 pm #7720Steve CollinsMember
I should like to reassure readers to this thread that your racing secretaries are already in discussion with the host club. Mike, Liam and I are meeting with the Race Officer at the Dinghy Show and we will be making final decisions there.
Please rest assured that we are talking about light touch, facilitative and educational umpiring. We are not talking about aggressive policing of the event. My own experience of being umpired at a major champtionship is entirely positive. It enhanced the quality of the event and standard of rules observance on the water.
I note that poll attached the thread suggests that opinion is split 50:50 (albeit on a small reponse rate and probably with a number of abstentions).
It seems to me, in my experience as a Sailing/Racing Secretary that you always going to be lobbied by half the fleet to raise the standard of rules observance and encourage people to protest. The other half will lobby you to relax and not take it too seriously.
It’s a difficult tightrope to walk!
Steve22/02/2009 at 3:20 pm #77327588Participant
If you didn’t make it to Skerries for the 2008 Wayfarer Europeans, you missed a great event. Championship class venue, warm welcome, well organised, excellent sailing for all.
My particular impression was of a great event for all sailors, no matter their level in the fleet. At the front of the fleet competition was close, fiercely competitive and no quarter given when mistakes made or rules infringed. Across the fleet there were mini battles taking place at all levels as the series unfolded. Some were coming out on top and were delighted. Others were suffering, occasionally capsizing, but still enjoying the regatta. That Wayfarer racing embraces such a disparate standard of competition underlines its diversity of appeal and that it is a vehicle for sailors at all levels to improve their game.
The organisers arranged for there to be a jury in place should protests occur. As is the norm in the majority of fleets, and at the higher profile regattas, the jury included individuals with appropriate judging qualifications. The organisers provided a RIB for the jury to watch the action out on the water. There was a good chance a juror would actually see any incident on the water that would find its way to the protest room (as was the case). Generally, getting out on the water allows the jury to better understand the characteristics of the boat (and the sailors), how the race was managed and the prevailing conditions.
This is not about on the water umpiring (à la International Match Racing or the America’s Cup). This is about a ‘sharpening the saw’ of the existing approach to juries and protests. There is an element of ultimate deterrent, but not something that should be feared by any Wayfarer sailor.
The direction the Wayfarer class is going is consistent with that of pretty much all classes. We are learning, as others, from mistakes made in the past; improving the game today and for the future.
Mr Q22/02/2009 at 5:30 pm #7735AnonymousInactive
I have nothing against on the water umpiring as such but question whether it is necessary this year.
Last year has sparked the suggestion but was a special case with at least some of the root cause (I do not discuss the resulting protest issues) arising from visitor unfamilarity with the race-track, many similar-looking small marks, moored boats obscuring some marks and possibly a minor “line” wording issue in the SI.
From memory of the last Nationals at Falmouth I don’t think these problems will occur there.
Perhaps we should skip the umpiring this year but debrief thoroughly for lessons we can take to Weynouth next year.23/02/2009 at 8:07 pm #7744Gordon DaviesMember
Firstly – let me declare an interest. I was chairman of the Protest Committee at Skerries last year.
If I may contribute to the debate – firstly by presenting some definitions:
A judge hears protests and arbitrations. They have been trained to run hearings according to approved procedure, to attempt to elucidate what happened during an incident and decide if a rule has been infringed. Judges also go out on the water, where, if the sailing instructions permit, they will judge infringements of Rule 42 (pumping, ooching and rocking), giving an instant decision. A judge may protest an incident they observe on the water, and will do so if they observe a deliberate breach of the rules such as a boat hitting a mark and sailing on.
An umpire gives an instant decision on the water following a protest by a boat against another. They can only do so if there is a protest, and only for protest concerning a limited number of rules. An umpire may protest other infringements.
A scrutineer is an official in other sports like car rallying but do not exist in sailing.
Judges and umpires are part of the race organisation team, and can contribute greatly to the success of an event. My way of looking at things is that a good Race Officer starts from the beginning of the event and does all he can to progress to the prize-giving smoothly and efficiently. A judge tends to work back from the prize-giving trying to prevent problems that may delay or stop the event from running, and to prevent the emergence of any diputes that may mar the event. In many cases, a word from a judge out on the water may prevent a messy protest or request for redress.
Both judges and race officers are problem solvers. By working together they can ensure a smooth running event. However, a judge can only fulfill this role if he is actively involved in the event. I believe that the days of the protest committee chairman who sits at home watching the cricket, waiting for a phone call from the club to come down to sort out a protest, are over.
If I may give a few examples from Skerries:
– it is Irish law that bouyancy aids are worn at all times. A race was potponed due to a lack of wind and competitors stripped off and sunbathed. One British boat started the following race without putting on their bouyancy aids. The judge was following the race closely, noticed this and slowly motored over and indicated by signs that they should put on their PFDs (the new in word it seems). They did. If the judge had not intervened, then there could have been a messy protest, with a boat being disqualified as this was the only penalty avalaible. There could have been a protest for outside aid, but this would not have been in the spirit of the event.
– there was one protest at the event, involving the leading boats. As the chairman of the jury was on the water he observed the incident and presented evidence at the protest hearing. This meant that the hearing took less time, so that the prizegiving could proceed (it took more time to gather the protest committee together than to hear the protest);
– the SIs allowed the Race Officer to offer a finishing place to trailing boats rather than let them finish outside the time limit (standard procedure in well run”fun” events). At the Race Officers invitation the judge was charged with carrying out the procedure. If there had been a request for redress for anerror in procedure this may have caused a conflict of interest, but the judge can always stand down from the protest committee;
– in a situation where the wing shifted some 90 degrees during a race the judge was available to recover now redundant marks to avoid confusion amongst competitors.. The judges RIB also served temporarily to indicate the position of the windward mark (the boat was the right colour – the right coloured mark was unavailable as the tail end of the fleet was still rounding it). We changed the SIs for the next days sailing.
– the SIs allowed for 2 races a day with the possibility of adding a 3rd. After losing a race on the first day, and having sailed the second race of the second day in fabulous sailing conditions we decided to go for a third race. However the judge was unhappy about the way the Race Officer was intending to inform competitors (ie I could imagine how I could phrade a request for redress) and (I hope diplomatically) suggested a bulletproof procedure which avoided the potential request for redress
– the judge was available after sailing to answer rules queries. This generally took place in the bar area,
– the judge was available on the water to answer rule queries between races…
I could go on. Other tasks included reading the SIs and making suggestions with a view to avoiding potential requests for redress
In my opinion, it is better to have a judge who is fully part of the race organisation, who meets the sailors, shares their experience on the water,
is available to settle grievances in the most appropriate way -which may be a formal hearing,hopefully done and dusted before the barbecue is even lit!. I firmly believe that this is the way race organisation is going at all levels. It is an inevitable development as more and more sailors and race officials gain experience umpired forms of racing (umpiring is a very recent development)
Gordon DAVIES08/03/2009 at 10:05 am #7789AnonymousInactive
Gordon’s posting explains very well the advantages of on the water and other actively-involved officials and, since his posting, I now struggle to see disadvantages if applied sensibly and in tune with the ethos of the particular class and context, as he describes.
However, at yesterday’s AGM and elsewhere in this thread the issue of paying for more event officials, including on-the-water umpires, is raised. I believe that a case widely accepted within the open-event racing fraternity must be made before imposing costs on entrants or organising clubs.
Reporting objective descriptions like Gordon’s are key to making that case. When the case has been made, then event organisers and competitors would see the value (or not) of on-the-water umpiring, etc.
Maybe this year UKWA should treat umpiring the nationals as an experiment and centrally fund it to give organisers and competitors the experience they need to make an informed judgement of its value.
At the AGM it was suggested that a ‘levy’ should be placed on events designated an UKWA national event. In retrospect I am not clear whether this was intended to cover umpiring, etc, or simply as the cost of UKWA endorsement for the event.
Nevertheless, whatever the levy is intended for – and it is important that UKWA has sufficient income – it is important that if income from an event is to be shared between the organising club and UKWA, then so should the risk be.
Anyone who has organised an UKWA event (I speak from experience of chairing the team that organised the 2006 Easterns at MYC and other events) will know that the local club commits significant funds quite early on and doesn’t know until almost the day of the event whether they will make a profit or a loss. To make a loss and yet still be required to pay a levy to UKWA would not be equitable.
If event levies are to be made, then they should be on an equitable, risk-sharing basis.08/03/2009 at 10:41 am #7790bigalMember
I am in favour of having Gordon at Falmouth despite being one of his
‘ victims ‘ at the Europeans .
I was but a millisecond from making an immaculate start at the pin end but hit it .
I gybed on to port and re-rounded crossing the start line on port and sailed behind the considerable number of boats leaving the line on
On coming ashore after finishing 7th Gordon pointed out that I hadn’t
performed the correct manoevre but of course none of the other boats realised this .
Annoyingly I knew what I should have done having had the same situation
when I was race officer two weeks earlier but in the heat of the battle ….
I promptly retired from the race .
Do you knowwhat I should have done without looking at the rule book ?????08/03/2009 at 6:45 pm #7792Margaret 8200Member
shouldn’t you have done some turns for hitting a mark? – but I am only the crew so don’t know how many I just keep my head down and mouth shut untill we are going the right way again.
now going to look for a rule book
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