As part of our boats trips round the UK over the past few years the subject of, Why numbers are decreasing at our Nationals, and to a lesser degree other regional events is occuring. Can I start a debate on the Nationals; There seems to be a reoccuring theme in the discussions i have had in that if people are travelling they want to maximise their sailing. Therefore the more races per day theory comes foward. A number of people have sujested the cost of a week is excessive, therefore a four day event over a weekend reduces costs and time off work. Additionally lots of parents, teachers etc have said if the event was held within the scool holidays they would attend. There are probably more reasons and indeed ways to improve the partisipation but can we use this forum to help the committee give the fleet what they want.
1/ If the Nationals were within the School holidays would you attend?
2/ If the event was a Four day weekend would you attend?
3/ Would you prefer the more races per day approach?
Start the debate.
I’ve done a few Nationals in recent years (Strangford twice, Abersoch etc) and also trail the boat to at least another event each year, be it Inlands or Northerns etc, so I
The main problems for the Helensburgh boats to travel to any event are as follows:-
1 We do not have trailers only cradles which is the way Helensburgh has always been. As a consequence of this we don’t have cars capable of towing a Sonata.
2. It is normally very expensive to launch and recover at Rhu marina ie
I am having trouble believing that after over 100 people have viewed this Topic that only two have views on the subject. In fact after the years i have spent sitting in club house bars and on boats after racing supping a lemonade or two i believe that Everyone seems to know how to do it better. Pull all those ideas out of the grey matter and put them into the pot now and make this a full and open debate, not just the ramblings of a few. (appologies to the contributers)
Regards to all
I believe the strong clear consensus from AGM’s over the past few years is that;
– The Sonata Nationals should be a unique event (i.e. not subsumed into Cowes, Scottish Series, unless desparate)
– The Nationals should follow the format best suited to the venue. (Sunderland did 14 round the bouy races, Strangford did an 8 race mixture of W/Ls, Triangles, and a couple of picturesque orienteering races.)
– The Nationals should not be reduced to a weekend or one day event.
The AGMs have slightly favoured a five day event but this has been more contentious with significant voices for a long 4 day weekend weekend. (My personal opinion is that this should be left to the venue organisation as they will know what works best for their venue and should be responsible for turnout.)
In my opinion the AGM’s have been split on the school holiday versus non school holiday with some think it is better to get a pass during school holiday and some during term time.
Helensburgh Sailing club (www.helensburghsailingclub.co.uk) are proposing to hold a 4 day nationals Friday to Monday inclusive. This is likely to be in June and I understand it is to be more like the Sunderland Nationals with lots of races.
The main reason for this is that they believe it will have a bigger turnout from locals than than a Monday-Friday Nationals.
Unscientifically I asked a few Sonata owners what they thought in the bar at Helensburgh and there was one clear against (wanting a 5 day) and one clear for (Wanting a 4 day) the others were keen to come whatever.
This is a proposal. There will be plenty opportunity to discuss this on this forum and of course at the AGM in October at Windemere.
Helensburgh propose the 2010 nationals dates to be:
Thursday the 10th to Sunday the 13th of June 2010
The intention is people launch on Wednesday and take part in a practice race on the Wednesday night.
The organisers are certain this will make the best regatta and ensure the local turnout.