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  • in reply to: Non Slip Paint #6825
    Mike Senior
    Participant
    in reply to: Dyform Stays #6222
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Duncan, I would guess that the gauge is correct. However, if the mark on the mast is from a different set of wires in the past then it is very unlikely the new set will measure the same, when pulled to the same mark, not only due to dyform or conventional but also whether they are exactly the same length. The mark on your mast will also differ depending on the genoa wire you are using. I personally always use the same luff wire with every Genoa (so my set-up remains consistent), but if you use different Genoas with different luff wires you would need separate marks for each Genoa 

    I wouldn’t worry about sailing with 450-460 lbs of tension unless your boat is quite old. I regularly sail in the 450 – 500 lbs range when it is breezy. You can tell if you have too much tension in the system when the boat feels “twitchy” when sailing close-hauld in light winds. If you are struggling to find a nice grove in lighter breezes then easing the rig tension generally helps for me as it adds a little depth to the genoa. (a little off topic but thought i’d add)

    Mike

    in reply to: Dyform Stays #6162
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Duncan, my thought process (probably wrong, hopefully an engineer will be able to correct me) – for a material of the same diameter when pulled to the required tension the reading would be the same regardless, but the amount of rope needed to pull that tension will differ depending on the stretch characteristics of the material. There will then be a performance difference in the materials when sailing reflecting how the material reacts to changes in load on the rig, meaning the dyform wire should be more efficient if you are looking to maintain a consistent tension as it stretches less than conventional wire.

    Mike

    in reply to: Downwind speed (and how to improve it) #5876
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Peter,

    That’s quite a lot of questions! All good ones though. I don’t want to say i’m a top sailor but I’ve won a few GP things so I’ll give answering your questions a go…

    Following on from last year’s post about upwind technique, how do the top sailors sail downwind, and what am I missing out on?

    Overall I think you maybe over-thinking some of it. I find good downwind boat speed needs really good boat handling first and foremost, where most of your maneuvers are performed from muscle memory rather than a conscious new thought (hope that makes sense). This takes lots of practice.

    -Pop the downhaul, let the outhaul off maybe 2-3cm, ease the kicker till the top telltale flies 50% of the time. Usually leave the rig tension alone, as it’s difficult to get on properly again with the rig under load. How much do others adjust the rig tension between legs, if at all?

    Kicker – I set to where looks sensible. Sometimes that it is probably with the tell-tale as you say but I never really take notice. I try to make a shape that looks sensible i.e. when looking for power something that looks like a plane wing on its end and when looking to dump power lots of twist (tell tale would then be flying all the time).

    I never adjust rig tension from upwind to downwind. I only consider altering it when there is a significant change in wind pressure. (more when it windy, less when it is light)

    I seldom release the outhaul on a GP. I just don’t think it makes that much difference when sailing inland, and the times I have released it I have generally forgotten to pull it on again upwind, which has more of a negative effect than the benefit of releasing it downwind. The exception is when I am doing a champs on the sea with long downwind legs, we generally then ease it on a broad reach when I looking for more power. I set it like an on-off button. Before the race we release the outhaul to where looks sensible and then put a stopper knot in the rope, so when we round the windward mark we just release it to the knot and forget about trimming it to the mm.

    Downhaul is always fully released unless it is a windy 2 sail reach then it is maybe pulled on hard or if it is a windy 3 sail reach and I need to twist the mainsail off to de-power and gain some height.

    -Board half up on a reach, 3/4 up on a run.

    Roughly yes, but I constantly re-adjust the board to where the balance feels right. On a windy reach the board can be as far up as 3/4. I am also re-adjusting a lot on the run depending on whether I am heading dead downwind (up as much as I dare), or down a bit if my VMG would be better sailing higher. On a long run I maybe swapping between the two a lot depending on the differences in pressure.

    -Keep the boat flat, if necessary by dumping the main (but mainly just by hiking harder). Jib set to the telltales. Is this likely to choke the slot and slow me down excessively? Is this how other people control heel? Or would you dump the jib or spinnaker first to stop the slot getting choked?

    I assume you mean breezy reaching conditions, otherwise you would want all sails pulling as hard as possible, therefore aiming for perfect boat and sail trim. When it is breezy, the most common mistake I see (and do) is when you get too focused on the mark early in the reach and forget about trim and speed. The boat’s angle may change a lot on a reach in breezy conditions, generally bear away in gusts and head up in lulls. For example, when a gust hits you may need to do a sharp bear-away to balance the boat whilst also moving back in the boat, hiking out and trimming sails; the boat will then accelerate quickly and then you will find it is easier to harden up towards your intended direction. It is crucial when breezy on a reach to have the kite at maximum eased position (the odd flap is better than over sheeting). The jib tell-tales should be flying but if struggling for height then a little luffing is acceptable. Over sheeting is a big no and can cause a capsize. Main will be constantly changing trim to reflect the course of the boat and how much power you need. If you are really overpowered, ease kicker a little and pull on downhaul. This will allow you to sheet slighter further inboard as the sail will twist more higher up and keep the slot open for the kite to drive you forwards.

    -Trim-wise, I try and keep the angle of the bow skimming the water in non-planing conditions, which generally means sitting quite far forwards. Usually I will sit on the thwart in line with the sidestay, to leeward, while my crew sits level with me to windward.

    I don’t think about the bow skimming the water. When not planing I just try and maximise the waterline length (which tends to be a similar position to for-aft upwind position). When very light we will probably induce a little heal to reduce wet area but keeping the same waterline length. When planing I just move aft based on feel. I find most boats in breezy conditions on a reach don’t sit far enough aft and then when it goes light forget to move forwards, quickly enough (I am particularly guilty of the latter point, which I am working on…).

    -The guy is set so as to be far enough forward that the spinnaker doesn’t touch the forestay when sheeted in enough to stop the luff from curling.

    Correct. Careful that the pole will bend further in breezy conditions.

    -The pole height is set so the luff of the spinnaker curls roughly half-way up when it breaks. If it curls too high, pole goes up, too low and the pole goes down.

    I think if it curls too high the pole needs to come down and vice versa. As a general rule my pole cuts across the genea at a perpendicular angle to the luff (I think that is the best way to describe it), and we generally just lower the pole it when it goes light to help the kite fill.

    -Tactically, I tend to sail pretty high away from the windward or gybe mark to get clear breeze, and then come down into the next mark with speed. If I’m going to go low I do it early, and only if I’m caught on the inside of a bunch at the windward, or outside at the gybe. Is this the right thing to do?

    I’m probably fairly similar to that but things change depending on position in fleet, conditions, tide ,how tight the reach is etc… If it is a standard reach (i.e. not too broad), and planing conditions I will generally if not in the lead delay my kite hoist, find a clear lane above the pack, pop the kite and try to overtake as many boats as possible in clear wind. Tactically though, you need to think about whether you are in an attacking or defending position and then adjust accordingly. Going low would probably be a bad choice if you are just ahead of a pack  who could cover all your wind (i.e. defending position), but as you say if you are at the back of a pack you can be in an attacking position and have the choice of sailing the shortest distance,  sailing low (good strategy if you round the windward mark in lots of breeze) or high (if you round the windward mark in little breezy and the new breeze is going to fill up higher).

    -Perhaps most importantly, technique. In light and patchy winds, I point up about 10 degrees from the rhumb line in the lulls, and bear about 10 degrees below it in the gusts, rolling the boat maybe 5-10 degrees to facilitate steering and minimise rudder drag. Does anybody else do this? Do you find the advantage of staying in pressure longer makes up for the extra distance sailed?

    See above, it is about trying to make a decision of what will maximise your VMG in relation to the point you want to get to. see – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velocity_made_good 

    Anything you can do to minimise rudder drag is good but careful not to be too aggressive as there will come a point where too much heal will have bigger negative affect than what moving the rudder would have done.

    In planing conditions, I tend to point up slightly when the boat isn’t planing, again by using about 5-10 degrees of roll, which allows me a roll to get the boat flat again as I pump the main and lean forwards as the wave passes under the mast and the bow dips. Once she starts to surf, my crew and I get our weight as far back as possible, sheet in the sails to stop them collapsing due to the apparent wind, and I steer the boat to keep pace with the wave, basically if the boat is going much quicker than the wave, I point slightly higher so the boat doesn’t overtake the wave and drop off the plane. Is this the correct technique, or can anybody recommend how I can improve it? I find my biggest losses happen in marginal planing conditions, when I am slightly slower to get on the plane than others around me.

    My simple rule I sail to is to try and keep the boat pointing downhill (easier said than done though). Sometimes that means bearing away rather than pointing up to prevent smashing in to the wave in front, whilst also considering where the next gust is and progress towards the mark. In marginal conditions our weight is moving all the time (hopefully in a smooth fashion) fore and after, in and out to ensure balance.

    Finally, are there any good videos of all this being done right? It would be good to have a close look at somebody who knows what they’re doing, even better if there is coach commentary on them (doesn’t even particularly have to be a GP, although that would help!), and are there any good downwind training exercises people could share to help improve?

    Check out:

    GP open from Poole prior to Looe Worlds

    Merlin Nationals (Looe. 14 mins 6 secs to see an example of how Stu Bithell sent it down a windy reach)

    Mike

    in reply to: Forum or Facebook feed? #5536
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Oliver – can you start a new thread or send me an email with details of how you are entering text into the forum? i.e. via the visual tab or text tab and whether you are drafting in an another program and then pasting? I’d like to be able to replicate the problem it to figure out how to fix it or explain what the procedures should be.

    Good points Dale. I think the website has to be the focal point, but different forms of media are here to stay, which means we need to be mindful of how best to communicate to people interested in GP14 sailing. Facebook and twitter have to be part of the strategy given how popular they are and easy to update remotely. The GP14 Facebook page managed by the association has 852 people (and rising) who will see posts and updates added to that page. Compared to other amateur classes we are among the most popular pages, which is surprising given content has only just started to be posted on a regular basis. The other benefit of utilising Facebook more is that it will widen the marketing reach of the class because people who are friends of people who “like” the GP14 class may at some point be tempted to “like” it also and then become part of the community and then visit the website for more content to see what the class has to offer. Utilising the website as the main source of communication limits us to just communicating to people who feel the need to go to the website in the first place.

    I expect the best way forward is just better integration with the website and social media platforms, whilst still retaining most of the functionality of the software built into the website.

    We discussed the other day about improving the homepage layout and I agree Brixham needs a bigger presence on the homepage. Will make some changes…

    With regards to asking specific racing or tuning questions, I would bet (just my thoughts) that some people are cautious about asking some questions on public forums for the risk of a – thinking their issue is a silly question, b – being a bit shy or c – thinking the top guys are unwilling to share their secrets. I think the latter is generally untrue but it is the perception that matters. I had a thought recently about adding a functionality called “Ask an Expert” on the site (potentially restricted for association members). The query would get sent to a panel of people related to that query. The results of which could be published as a thread on here or as a FAQ part of the site (names removed).

    Mike

    in reply to: Gust/Shift/Patch Upwind Technique #4560
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    That’s interesting, I was always taught that you should adjust your boat balance so the rudder always felt “slack” to reduce turbulence, so pointing up always gets combined with a slight leeward roll so there’s no resistance when I move the tiller away. I also find in light winds that rolling the boat to facilitate steering means that I can get an extra spurt of power when I flatten it out again afterwards (although this is straying into debatable rule 42 territory). Perhaps this is more effective in a boat that’s more sensitive to weight movement, like a mirror or a firefly? Anyway, you reckon the possible extra leeway and loss in power in a GP cancels out any benefit from minimising rudder drag? – Unfortunately I don’t there is one rule for all conditions. I usually sail on a small pond so the lifts and headers can be extreme from 1 minute to the next. To actively induce leeward heal to role the boat to windward would mean the lift would have to be substantial. In any breeze where the helm and crew are sitting to windward I would argue that letting the boat heal to leeward would negatively effect your sideways drift compared to sailing flat and fast. I am also not conscious of my rudder movement in this scenario. If the lift was substantial which required lots of rudder movement, I would expect the wind to be light, so in this scenario I probably would naturally move my bum from the deck to the inside seat which I would of thought naturally made my rudder lift the boat up. I’m not 100% sure about this as this action isn’t something I think about. It is just a muscle memory.

    So when you’re steering the boat through waves, you just keep the jib fully in? I think my crews will be happy to hear that! – Yes, however if there is a wave that is particularly steep or I cock it up, we may ease the genoa on the back side of the wave for a few seconds then put the bow down to get some speed back up. Generally though, I will sail the boat in a “high mode” up the wave (max power, maybe slightly pinched, windward jib tell tale fluttering up), and “low mode” down the wave (efficient sail plan, tell tales streaming). That could mean in any decent wind the mainsail is slightly over sheeted going up the wave and eased back to its fast position down the wave. In light to moderate conditions where the main is never eased it is all about generating max power, so little kicker but loads of mainsheet tension as this will bend the mast much less than kicker and therefore give you a more powerful sail. The main in these conditions will remain relatively static, but the waves should also be smaller given the conditions. Rudder movement will be lots more in short steep waves than long rolling ones, but assuming you have correct trim, you shouldn’t generally need to ease the jib very often. If you do, just make sure you remember to get it back as soon as you are back to speed.

    So you think that the difference is small enough that boat-to-boat tactics are the main factor in your decision? – Generally, yes. My perfect race is simply to go the same way as everyone else, but faster. Minimises the risk. However, if I find myself back in the fleet I will take any little gain I can find to pick my way up. Generally though small shifts don’t make the biggest difference in this scenario, but boat handling around marks. If you mess up your mark rounding it then generally means you have next to no options on your next leg. A good mark rounding gives you a left/right decision or high/low decision to make. A bad rounding means you have to go one or the other to get a good lane, which could be the wrong decision. After that and assuming you have good boat speed, most of my thoughts are then on boat-boat tactics relative to the fleet. My biggest decisions tactically are generally taken in the 2-3 minutes prior to the start as that will determine whether we go middle-left or middle-right up the first beat. If we get round the first mark in the top few, then it is generally just close boat tactics that remain, unless the fleet I am concerned with split tacks, then the decision making process is based on my interpretation of the best way to go, or where my likely regatta competition is relative to the risks I am taking.

    Sheeting angles are always a problem for me. Do you usually use leach hook at spreader height as an indication? Or is there another method you use? I’ve heard of using the angle the jib sheet makes with the clew as a method, but it seems like that would vary with the actual cut of the sail, so it’s not something I want to rely on too much – I try to get the sheeting angle to be about 45 to 60 degrees (ish). I have never measured it but it looks as though the angle would probably split the jib in two if you continued the line. I very rarely alter it. In fact on a previous boat I fitted it out without any adjustment. A GP genoa is a flat sail compared to a lot of other boats because it is sheeted so far outboard (on the side deck). Therefore the most critical control after you have got the angle about right is how hard you pull it. I would recommend, next time you look at replacing your mainsail you ask your sailmaker to put a spreader window in (if you don’t have one) as you can then see when sitting to windward whether the genoa is pulled in hard enough or not. Generally above a force 1 it is pulled in tight, but the window is useful as generally it is not pulled in tight enough when the breeze pipes up.

    I think I get you. So if you’re sailing in non-tidal waters, with oscillating shifts, and there’s a big black cloud on the left hand side (or even if it just looks like there’s a bit more breeze on the way down the left), you want to try and keep to the left of the fleet even if it means initially taking a knock from the shifts? Basically ride the lift all the way round the right hand side of the breeze – Yes, these decisions are generally made right at the beginning of the beat, ideally pre-start or just before you drop your kite at the leeward mark, as it can have a big impact on how you start or mark round.

    Mike

     

    in reply to: Gust/Shift/Patch Upwind Technique #4556
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Peter,

     

    Good set of questions!

    If there is a sudden header, presumably you hike hard and bear away to reattach the flow to the sails before tacking. – Depends on how big the header is and whether the crew is ready to tack. If it is sharp header that looks as though it is here to stay, I will generally tack providing I have a good lane on the new tack and it is taking me closer to the mark than the previous tack. Generally though, I will have 80-90% made my decision before the header has hit.

    If there is a lift, do you get your crew to crack off the jib slightly and point up gradually, or do you just roll the boat away from you to take you up to close hauled straight away? – If the lift is big enough to stall the leeward tell tale, my crew will ease the jib and gradually pull back in as I head up. This is something we constantly work on, even on pond sailing. I am aiming to sail the boat 100% flat, unless very light wind and mainsail tell tales struggling to fly.

    If you get hit by a gust and aren’t able to keep flat by simply hiking harder, do you ease the main, or point up and feather the boat to keep it flat? A little of both. If the gust is sudden and the rig isn’t set correctly for the new wind, I will ease the main a little and feather up to wind a little to keep the boat flat, if I can’t do it by perching a little harder. If the new gust is here to stay and I wasn’t able to change sail settings in time, I will change controls and balance rig so that I can then put the bow down and keep tell tales on genoa flying.

    Does this change depending on whether you are on the sea or on a loch? – No

    And do you dive for the kicker and the outhaul as soon as you are hit by the gust, or do you do “damage control” to get the boat flat again before changing sail settings? – I never alter the outhaul upwind on a GP. Ideally kicker is applied as gust hits. In my boat it is whoever gets their first controls the kicker. Ideally crew is best place for kicker control. 

    In patchy conditions, what do you do when you hit a lull? Do you keep sailing to the telltales? Do you get the crew to crack off the jib slightly to keep trucking until the next bit of pressure, and if so, by how much? Do you avoid tacking in lulls? – I would sail through the lull if it still takes me closer to the next mark in a clear lane and there isn’t any obvious new pressure coming from the other tack that would mean I could loose out to boats to windward. I would also stay in position if I was in protecting a position and I was between the boats I was covering and the next mark. i.e. why take the risk. Let them decide.

    Crew would ease the jib a little if the lull was very light, or boat speed completely vanished, but in those conditions the crew would of moved weight to leeward and be able to see the slot between genoa and main. I good test is to check whether the genoa is bending around the shroud. If it is, then there isn’t enough pressure, so ease a little.

    Sometimes in a lull it may feel like a header, whereas the wind direction may not have changed. I think this is due to the apparent wind moving more on to the bow. If you tack in this situation it will just feel like you are tacking around a big circle and probably not achieve anything.

    And tactics-wise, would you tend to follow the shifts more, or go for pressure? – I think of pressure as big picture, ie. what can I see on 2-3 minutes on the water ahead of me and shifts as the immediate vicinity – up to 1 min. You always want more pressure and then when you are near it, just make sure you are better positioned relative to the next mark than your competition. When looking at big picture pressure on the water, pressure that is likely to pass to leeward will back and pressure that will hit the windward bow will lift. 

    Hope this helps.

    Mike

    in reply to: Forestay tension #4261
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Norman,

    Assuming your wire is 3mm in diameter, I think 400lbs is just under mark “28”.

    – image from flying fifteen site.

    hope this helps.

    Mike

    in reply to: The Sail Number Register #3598
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    We haven’t moved the boat register because of some of the reasons Oliver mentioned, however the main reason is that the old register was not accurate. It relied on the user to keep it updated which meant it was out-of-date and never that accurate. I for example was listed as the owner on least 2 boats, when I didn’t own them. I just forgot to remove my records. A better long term plan is to somehow link this with the association records, which is then managed by the association. However, this raises a few issues which need to ironed out including a consideration of data protection and if consent is needed, how do we then get consent, e.g. mailshot etc… I am not an expert in data protection so I assume advice would be needed. Perhaps someone could advise?

    in reply to: Advice for first time buyer #3245
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Paraic,

    My interpretation of the difference between MKI, MKII & MKIII is mainly about the internal layouts. I am unaware of any hull shape rule changes between the different models. The rules as they exist already allow for minor tolerances in hull shape so not all GPs will be exactly the same.

    The MKI has a single floor, with floor boards attached on top. Buoyancy aft of the fore tank is provided with inflatable bags. The floor is generally a bit lower than MKII & MKIIIs and therefore a little more comfortable as your knees are less bent. I am not aware of any MKIs built solely for racing for a long time, however many are still competitive. I am actually sailing one tomorrow at the club.

    The MKII has a double skin floor. There is extra bouyancy in the floor and therefore no need for buoyancy bags. You will probably find the layout of a MKII more simple than a MKI. They also tend to take on much less water if you capsize. The MKII will have 2 central bailers, either side of the centreboard casing.

    The MKIII is as per the MKII but with no self-bailers. This is achieved by raising the floor a little more and in the case of duffin hulls adding two slots into the centreboard case (above the water line) which self bails the water. I am unsure whether the new Winders have these slots or if they have managed to design it in such a way so any water goes out of the transom.

    If your after some pointers about what is fast internationally, the top 3 results of the most recent World Championship and UK National Championships were shared between Duffin (wood), Winder (plastic) and Boon (plastic). I have sailed all three and can say they are all extremely quick and very well made.

    Hope this helps.

    Mike

    in reply to: Results #2530
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Duncan, complete agree, however I think a separate topic is the place to discuss this. I personally think the whole rule book needs updating and maybe even converting to the ISAF format, but I appreciate that would involve a lot of work so not to be undertaken lightly by the technical committee. The biggest change I would lobby for is to completely remove the permitted fitting rule and replace it with an exclusion list instead.

    Mike

    in reply to: Results #2526
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Colin,

    I have added the class rules to the members library. Thanks for spotting this. We are still going through the process of transferring some things over, so if you do spot anything please continue to post on the forum.

    Ref: Results – I could simply copy the results bit from the old website, but have thoughts to provide something cooler. The original results archive on the old website was a manual page, meaning they had to be individually loaded and linked to that website which relied on someone to do it, which inevitably means the archive will never include all results. I actually didn’t realise that page existed on the old site until your post!! However, we have been discussing about a better way to archive results when an event report is loaded and I am exploring how easy it would be convert all future results into a pdf file when received in html or sailwave format and then categorising those attachments as “results”. This will allow us to create a results archive which will automatically pick up these pdf files and display them in a user friendly way without anyone doing any more work than what an event report requires.

    I will pop up a news article to alert everyone when this is live. In the meantime I will look at simply copying the results from the old website and displaying in a similar format.

    Cheers, Mike

    Mike Senior
    Participant

    I agree with most you say apart from Barbados, but i’ll leave that one for now until full details of the event emerge so everyone can make there own opinion. I also disagree that the class has an image of fleecing its sailors with extortionate entry fees. The comments around Largs  have been discussed by the championship committee already. Overall our entry fees as a class for opens, areas and championships are well within average and in a lot cases below. The reasons why the Largs entry fee was what is was have been outlined, so I won’t reiterate that again.

    The entry fees for the last 2 championship events are as follows:

    • Northern Champs = £45 (includes evening meal on Sat)
    • End of Season Champs = £40 (includes evening meal on Sat)

     If the class is to thrive, it needs to be targeting the people moving out of junior classes, so uni students and school leavers. 

    Agree, but from an event organisation point of view youth boats already get a 50% discount on association events. Maybe this could be extended to uni leavers (exc mature students!) and/or first timers, but there comes a point where economics say you can’t discount everyone, otherwise the association or event would make a loss.

    Mike Senior
    Participant

    “I don’t think anyone new from the UK or Ireland is going to be enticed into the class by it though. If they won’t race GPs here, they won’t go half way across the world to race them, and if they want to go sailing in the warm, I think they’d just go to Sunsail.”

    – Completely disagree. Sunsail type sailing is not racing. GP14 sailing in the main is all about racing whether that be at a club or international level (no offense intended to the cruisers out there). Barbados has the potential to be a very successful world championship with stable conditions and excellent facilities. I have spoken to many sailors who aren’t usual GP14 racers over here who are extremely excited about the prospect of racing in Barbados. I also know of sailors who went 505 sailing just to go to the recent worlds in Barbados just because it was in Barbabos. That was a fantastic opportunity for the 505 class to show these sailors who may initially of just intended to sail this 1 event to keep them in the class. Yes, Barbados may not appeal to everyone but from everyone I have spoken to about it, I have left the conversation thinking that person is seriously thinking about going.

    If as a class we display a positive message about what our racing provides, such as top quality close racing, quality competitive equipment at affordable prices, brilliant venues at a variety of places we will benefit from increased attendance, but by far the best way for our class to increase increase numbers at events and thus membership is for us sailors to shout about how good GP14 sailing is to everyone we know that sails.

    – Reducing entry fees can be done in 3 ways; 1. go to a cheaper venue based on what the club would charge per boat (generally, clubs ran on a voluntary basis will be cheaper. There are pros and cons for this). 2. provide less things during week (i.e. organised social acitivies) and 3. Gain monetary support from sponsors. Subsidising from association membership fees should never be factored in (my opinion). Gaining monetary support from sponsors has been difficult in recent years but if we did gain a significant monetary sponsor I would (personally) prefer it if the money was spent enhancing the event rather than reducing entry fees as I don’t think it would make that much difference to event entries but would potentially heighten the publicity of the event way beyond its normal boundaries. Also, if you base entry fee on monies gained sponsorship and then the sponsorship falls through the association would have to pick up the tab. The main reason why Largs was expensive was the host venue cost per boat based on the estimated number of entries (which ended up being fairly accurate). Probably a lesson to be taken from this could be that following a big worlds year a cheaper voluntary based club may be a better option.

    Back to original thread of making people attend, I think we need to be much better as a class at explaining how good value GP14 racing is and not focusing solely on price. Yes price is important but it is probably more important to stress that whilst price is what you pay, value is what you get. For some reason, we seem to get drawn into wanting to drive down the cost of everything all the time, whether that be the price of events or the price of new boats (please lets not go there again though!!). That does not give a positive external image of the class. I think overall my week in Largs was good value and will be saying so to anyone who asks me. On total price, my total cost of event versus Looe in 2012 was less. Based in the Midlands my travel time was similar, but accommodation was much cheaper compared to what I paid in the increased entry fee.

     

    • This reply was modified 10 years, 6 months ago by Mike Senior. Reason: typo
    Mike Senior
    Participant

    Hi Peter,Good feedback, which I will take to the next championship meeting for discussion. I’ll put some of my personal views below to your comments:

    Home club participation – Very good point. I didn’t personally notice the GPs in the dinghy park, but this has made me think that as a championship committee we need to work more closely with the relevant area rep in the area where the nationals are being held as there is only so much that can be done from afar without knowledge of the local fleet.

    Barbados Worlds – I disagree in part, but agree that we should do everything possible to encourage GP sailing wherever we may go for a world championship. It is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the class on the international stage and the potential to grow outside our normal areas should be explored. I disagree that holding an event which may attract some which only dip their toes into the class is a bad thing. If holding a world championship in a venue such as this raises the profile to such an extent that attracts these people, then there is a fair chance we can keep them in the class once they experience the first class close racing.  The deal that will be on offer to travel to barbados promises to be extremely attractive with substantial support from the Barbadian tourism authority. I attended the Fireball world champs there and it cost just over £200 to get the boat there and back and it was only gone for a little over a month I think. This is substantially cheaper than the cost of the previous Sri Lanka worlds.

    Entry fees – Following on from my previous response, I agree that entry fees should be as low possible, but I am not aware of how other associations budget for their champs so comparing like for like is difficult. The aim of setting the entry fee for the champs is not for profit but also not for loss as it would be unfair for the association to subside a loss making event. By comparison, it is worth noting the recent Optimist nationals held at Largs was costed at £180 per boat with a substantially bigger entry! The cost of running the nationals at Largs would however been substantially less could we have guaranteed more boats but following a worlds year and location considerations, costing around 50 boats was planned. It is worth noting, that for GP14 championship events there are substantial discounts already on offer for youth sailors. I have been lucky to experience many championship venues across the UK. This was my first time to Largs and personally I thought it was worth it given the first class facilities. Comments on entry fees will I am sure be discussed in detail for future nationals.

    Mike

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