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Thinking ahead to when the CV crisis begins to unwind eventually  it might be a good idea to start making plans as to how racing can be conducted. Clearly the old normality isn’t going to come back for quite some time, maybe even years. So a modified approach will be necessary.

It seems unlikely that herds of sailors walking up and down the bank together is going to be allowed. Control will have to be from fixed positions at least 2 metres apart. Courses  will have to be set so all marks are visible from any position. The use of heats will likely become more prevalent to reduce lakeside numbers. Launching and retrieval will have to sequenced to maintain separation. Maybe a Marshall with a hailer will be needed to ensure distancing rules are applied.

It would interesting to hear what other members have in mind for the future of racing. Hopefully no one is thinking of ignoring the risks.

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With a large % of racers being in two of the higher risk groups- male and older- we are going to have to be extra careful. I think that with signing on , rescuing any out of control boats and the simple loss of concentration on social distancing whilst racing it's going to be very difficult to keep safe.

I think that racing is going to be very restricted and limited until a vaccine is widely available. This could be next year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

We at Gresford observed the social distance rule & sailed just before the lockdown.  We found that we could space out OK & remain static whilst sailing in the races. The problems we found were using the clubhouse facilities,  keeping a distance, using taps & tables etc.  We did manage it but it was habit breakingly arkward.  I can see that when we all resume it will be very difficult with travel, racing & restricting numbers. Let's hope we can overcome this & possibly start with just general sailing.  Stay safe all.

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I think a lot of this stuff does need thinking about before sailing can resume. Stuff like having a one-way system for the control area for starters to try and stop people bumping into each other. In one door and out another using facilities. By and large theres no reason why we can't sail and keep distance...

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I started this thread because nobody else had mentioned anything about plans for racing in the future, which frankly  I found surprising. I tentatively lobbed in a few observations. As well as being a novice Club racer I am a long serving Committee member of an rc flying club.  We have been circulating a document among the Committee members for several weeks now which is steadily being discussed and improved. This will be the blueprint for safe operation of our flying activities when the virus outbreak has been controlled. If a vaccine is not found we shall have to wait until other government control activities have reduced the risk of coming across an infected person to tolerable level, say comparable to having a fatal road accident. Then with well thought out precautions and new practices most people I think will be willing to participate.
Whilst I appreciate that  our hobby/sport isn’t very important compared to the crisis it may still be possible to spend a little time looking ahead.

In the meantime thank you to the Members who have given their thoughts so far.

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I am sure that clubs have been having this discussion from day one of lockdown. The precautions that will be put in place will no doubt be different for each club and event but until their is guidance and recommendations I am not sure what we as members can do? I know that all members are keen to get back sailing and hopefully club sailing can resume at the earliest time but whatever format we use social distancing will be difficult to manage when the “red mist” of competition kicks in.

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I think the most useful suggestion to come from this thread is to maybe start with free sailing and not racing. With a few sessions concentrating on procedures ,use of facilities etc without the pressure of racing, I think we would have more chance of staying safe. And then reintroducing racing once we had got used to the new regimes and procedures. And when we are back there will be a lot to chat about.

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I am sure that there will be as many solutions as there are clubs!

At my own club we already have a system in place for the use of the clubhouse facilities by both ourselves and the dinghy sailors.

For us radio sailors we will have fixed control positions marked out central to the course to maintain 2 metres minimum separation with a maximum of 10 participants/race/heat. Control positions will be allocated before the first heat/race and then everyone will move one place before each start. To avoid problems on the start line we will utilise a "gate" system with the gate boat being whoever has been allocated a control position on the start line. This way everyone will have the opportunity to be the gate boat and to race from each of the control positions. It may not be ideal but it will get us going again as soon as we are allowed to gather in groups greater than 2.

There may not be many replies on this thread but I am sure there is not a club in the country that isn't considering their way forward once we are allowed more freedom than at present.

 

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Hi,

Extract from the recent MYA newsletter.

Quote

Current position with regard to Covid-19
Unfortunately at this time (30 April 2020) the position is unchanged. Government guidance is still that we should
not go out unless essential and that social gathering is not allowed. This leaves us with no choice but continue with
the same advice given on 17 March 2020. The council did discuss some of the situations that could come when the
advice changes, and although the Government’s views are not known, the MYA agreed the following basic position.
No MYA National Championships or Rankings will take place unless all of our members have the opportunity to
enter. It may be that this can be amended if there are suitable safety precautions put in place, but the MYA will
advise when appropriate. Once any further advice is given regarding easing of the social gathering restrictions there
will be a minimum of 6 weeks before any MYA National Championships or Rankings will take place.
As with the 17 March notice, club and district sailing will be at the discretion of members at a local level but the
MYA hope that this will be in line with Government advice.

I think that important line is the final sentence, as this sets out that club sailing will be at the clubs descretion and local planning should take place based on government guidance.

Although I hear and read lots of "noise" in the press I suspect that this Sundays' announcement from the PM will not allow us to start racing next week! :(

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Thanks for posting this. We've had some ideas posted here as to how racing might safely resume. The more the better. Bit like an online brainstorming session.

 

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I like the solution put forward by Phil. One tweak might be to allocate the gate berth to the boat finishing (say) third in the previous race. This approach makes the rotation of fixed positions slightly more complicated but avoids the potential of intimidating novice sailors from having to operate as gate boat. Also, in some clubs where there might be a significant boat speed difference between the top and other sailors you would also avoid the probability of the faster boats taking the gate really early, overtaking the gate boat and going “loose cover” on the fleet. Apologies if I have spent too long indoors - I may be over thinking this !

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Further to Phil’s proposal, in order to maintain skippers distancing during excitement of race, suggest all skippers to be seated in picnic chairs spaced 2m apart. Chairs position to be drawn for first race, then moved along 2m every other race, to ensure all get favourable positions. If bank is steep chairs could be in 2 or more rows to allow more skippers to have favourable positions.

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Posted (edited)

Getting back to my club history I thought this bit might be relevant- “On 10th January 1940 the club secretary Wm Carpenter sent a notice to members stating that owing to war conditions it would not be possible to carry through the usual club events or fixtures. There was an AGM held in the boathouse on March 16th 1940. A special AGM on May 2nd 1942. Another special meeting on June 6th 1945. Another on 4th February 1946. Then club sailing settled into a routine, with racing on Saturdays again. However I think the lake could be used during the war, as there was permission for members to use the Air Raid shelters in Gautby Road school.

 

This was from one of our longest serving members of Birkenhead, Joyce Roberts (Martins Mum)

And we think we have it bad, have a thought for those poor folk.

At Birkenhead  the committee are in talks about how sailing will start up again, once it is safe to do so, all the ideas from this forum are being considered including match racing and 3/4 boat fleet sailing, pre-register for club races so we can limit numbers, rigging on the bankside and not the clubhouse, masks, gloves, staying a Marblehead top suit away from each other, etc.

Edited by Graham Elliott
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  • 2 weeks later...

There is another option being trialled at Emsworth.  A match racing ladder run like a squash ladder.  Challenge anyone up to 5 places above you.   Only ever 2  sailors at any one time in prearranged slots.  (i.e. OK with social distancing and Covid-19 rules) Best of 5 to decide. Winner to take higher place and looser to  take  lower place.  Failure to accept challenge in a reasonable time places swopped by default.  I believe there are 14 takers for the IOM ladder and 16 for the RG65 ladder.  A small start from those not still confined by shielding or extra vulnerable requirements.  Suitable control and launching areas and social distancing are relatively easy to organise.

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