Sailing at Clapham on the 5th July

July 5, 2009 at 5:48 pm | Posted in News | Leave a comment

I regret it was a disappointing day at Clapham.
We should have been sailing the 1Metre class, but while the weather was fine, as was the breeze, the water was a little low. A few skippers did try sailing the 1M,s but found the boats were grounding in a few places, although much of the pond was useable.
Some skippers who were watching seemed to have decided that racing would be marginal, with placings being largely dependent on whether or not the boat hit or missed a hazard and an air of uncertainty prevailed and it needed “somebody” to take charge and decide whether all those with 1M,s should get on the water, or make the decision that as conditions were borderline we should sail the Soling,s instead. Either way some skippers would have been disadvantaged by not having the appropriate boat to sail. In hindsight the decision should have been made to sail the 1M,s as that was the scheduled class race for the day. The question is, who is the “somebody” who should make that decision?. As Chairman, perhaps the decision should have been mine after taking a consensus of opinion. I apologise to all for not doing so, although in my defence I was not feeling at my best today.
The situation does highlight the need for a greater degree of discipline on scheduled sailing days. First we must start on time, or at a reasonable time. Second, we must endevour to sail the class of boat designated for the day unless there is a compelling reason why that is not possible. There will be times when some skippers will be disadvantaged by not having the class of boat to be sailed on the day but I see no way around that problem. The decision on 1M or Soling is not so bad as many skippers have both classes, but the decision on 6M days is more divisive, although strangely, when I checked in the Clubhouse today I counted 8 Six metre boats, almost as many as each of the other classes.
Another problem we have is Club members fiddling with other interests such as power boats, kites and computers rather than concentrating on getting a class boat on the water. These other interests are best left to Sundays other than the 1st and 3rd Sundays, or to Wednesdays so as not to interfere with the Club programe.
At the risk of appearing dictatorial I shall in future make these decisions myself after consultation, but I must expect support. If no action is taken I fear the Club will not be fullfilling it,s function of being a dedicated Model Yacht Racing Club.
It would be helpfull if those reading these notes would let me know by Email at whether they agree or not with the sentiments expressed in this blog, but failing feedback I shall put these thoughts into practice at future meetings. Derek.

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