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Author Topic: Aluminum mast and plate runner fleet at WC and NA's  (Read 16476 times)
rpotcova
Class Officer
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Posts: 96


« on: October 16, 2012, 09:45:58 PM »

Looking for some discussion on the subject topic.  Perhaps this gets some of the club racers on tight budgets on the course.  We all have these guys and gals at our local clubs.

Some thought starters that have been discussed:

Pure plate runners and aluminum mast fleet - no exceptions.
Do we have mini qualifiers or not?   Keep the fleet independent from the GC fleets?
No racer with a raking of xx or lower allowed in fleet (not sure what the rank should be)
Maybe only allow (3) runners for the entire regatta.
Maybe 2 laps instead of 3. Or a shorter course. Those old spars are tough on their skippers.

Lets hear it
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DN 805
Class Member
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Posts: 266


« Reply #1 on: October 17, 2012, 08:36:34 AM »

For sure we need to encourage newbies.  We need to identify the best ways to accomplish this. 

For several years there has been an aluminum mast/plate runner prize at the Western Regional and, unfortunately, only one or two competitors.

 Ice time at the championship is always at a premium, the Gold Fleet seems to frequently be denied an opportunity to race on the opening day because of the time used for the qualifiers.   Encouraging participation of those with aluminum mast/plate runners is a worthy goal so they are introduced to the 'gang'  and have the opportunity to witness top notch competition.  But do we have the ice time available to accommodate them in a separate start?  Would a division in the bronze fleet be a scheme to  introduce the program?  Or should the emphasis be at the fleet and regional level?

Could  each regional Rear Commodore be asked to have aluminum mast/plate runner prizes at the regionals, perhaps the Class could provide the prizes?  Or schedule a day for a sailing and tuning clinic, followed by pizza and beer?  Have a runner sharpening/alignment session?    Have a mentoring program, such as there will be at the Ice Opti NAs?    These intiatives would require a strong promotion effort.

A starting point might be to learn from the owners of alumnum masts and plate runners what it will take to get them involved.   Is the travel commitment a problem for them?   Are they concerned they don't have the necessary sailing and racing skills?  Are they interested in competing against others with like equipment?    Are they interested in becoming involved in racing?

 Not everyone reads this forum.  If you can establish the format for a brief questionaire,   I have over 300 names on our swap meet email list and would be happy to forward a questionaire to the list.

All swap meets have raffles. Grand prize = a session with a champion in your class of boat?

DN 805
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Geoff Sobering
Class Officer
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Posts: 458



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« Reply #2 on: October 17, 2012, 03:35:54 PM »

I like anything to help get new people involved in the class.
I especially like Jane's suggestion of a separate tuning-day/mentoring program at the regional regattas; it's tough to concentrate on racing well and helping someone else. I would be happy to sign up for that.

A couple of quick thoughts:
  • We already have the "bart rule"; would that do the job of keeping race times in check for slower boats?
  • I agree a separate start (esp. and the NAs and WC) is not feasible given time constraints. A division within the Bronze fleet is seems like a good compromise.
  • I don't remember trophies limited to aluminum masts (?) but there have been plate-runner trophies in many of the recent regattas.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2012, 03:38:38 PM by Geoff Sobering » Logged

Man Why You Even Got to Do a Thing
rpotcova
Class Officer
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Posts: 96


« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2012, 03:18:27 PM »

I see alot of folks reading this post but only a few responses.  Lets hear your opinions...good or bad.

After lots of discussion about the plate runner/aluminum mast type fleet,  I have a few more options to toss into the mix.  Most of this was ideas and thoughts of others at the TIYC meeting and the GLIYC swap meet over the weekend.  Thanks for the discussions.


1.  One option is a plate runner fleet and forget about the aluminum mast.  Thought is that there are many composite masts out there to use but the newer younger sailors do not have the runner collection like the rest of the fleet.

2.  Another option is to use the 5 step rule at the start of the race.  Basically the skipper is limited to a certain number of steps before he jumps in the boat.  Or maybe its policed by a distance and not steps since stride length varies.  This benefits our aging or slightly handicapped skippers.

3.  Should a fleet like this be trialed at the regional level first and not the NA or Worlds level?


Lets hear your ideas.  Don't complain if you don't speak up!

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DN 5449
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Posts: 361


« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2012, 06:00:23 PM »

O.K.
you wanted some input here is my 2 cents
First off not real interested in just plate runner fleet.More interested in limiting the # of runners.
As far as the 5 step rule I again am taking a pass.Two things,first it would be very hard to police (especially in a big fleet).Secound is fitness should be rewarded.It is a little equalizer between youth and entusiasim,and experience and equipment.
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eric_anderson
Newbie

Posts: 43


« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2012, 07:12:02 AM »


The reality is that 90% of the time you are going to compete with 3/16 inserts or snow plates.  If you own one set of cheap pit runners , 3 inserts and 3  26" snow plates, you can sail in the gold fleet.  I know that from personal experiance.  Beyond that  it is far more important to have your shit lined up and tuned perfectly than to have lots of stuff.

As far as masts go, I have bought 3 composite masts in 12 years.  I still own all of them (one is in europe)  Last year I sailed an 11 year old mast in Europe.

The real cost of racing is travel.  Last year the closest  spot I sailed was 220 miles  from my house.  If you want to reduce the sosts of iceboating, get a partner and a smaller car
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thistle3966
Newbie

Posts: 7


« Reply #6 on: November 06, 2012, 11:32:27 AM »

Being new to the class and iceboating, I find this an interesting read.

I think at the regional and national level, participation in the 'plate-runner' division is low, primarily due to the competitive nature of those who actually travel to the bigger regattas. These are individuals who have the insert runners, composite masts, and the rest of the go fast gear. Those with aluminum masts and plate runners are usually more interested in club racing or cruising around a local lake for the day. I don't think creating a division for plate runners will encourage them to travel to these events. I know that is an extremely large assumption based on my perception, but from what I have observed, seems to be the reality.

I believe this is a great idea, but maybe more for the club level??

I don't speak for the majority, but I am slightly discouraged when trying advance. I have an outdated older boat, aluminum mast, plate runners in which I probably spent too much money and time fixing up, and can't sell. I went to the Western Challenge last year and was completely hooked. One of my buddies let me take out his C2 boat with all the trimmings, and since then have been gathering advice and opinions on what gear to acquire to become more competitive.

I get discouraged when I see the cost. I am not saying that I have to have everything nor do I feel iceboating is the most expensive sport. Iceboating is secondary to campaigning a one design sailboat in my household, so slipping an extra 4-5k past the finance warden is extremely difficult, especially after being interrogated about the expense report from the summer of racing.

The composite masts appear to be readily available at a reasonable cost, but competitive used insert runners are the hard to find. I can't blame anyone for not wanting to sell their finely profiled, perfectly sharpened runners that they have spent hours stoning. I am too competitive to show up to events with everything but the appropriate runners, but also don't have the extra cash on hand to get the runners I need to copy the leaders in the class.





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Geoff Sobering
Class Officer
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Posts: 458



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« Reply #7 on: November 06, 2012, 11:43:50 AM »

Just a personal note on the competitiveness with plate runners. A couple of years ago I had a major crash the week before the Westerns and not enough time to get everything back to together on my main boat. Instead I took the boat I keep around to loan out to people (ancient all glass "Norton Winder" mast, 50's era plate runners, and a hand-me-down F-01 sail) to the regatta. All I did was check the crown and sharpness on the runners.

My guess is that I finished about 3-5 places behind where I would have with a better mast and insert runners.
More importantly, I had a blast!.
I was racing in a pack of boats in every race, so I didn't feel like I was "tagging around the course".

Cheers,

Geoff S.
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Man Why You Even Got to Do a Thing
rpotcova
Class Officer
***
Posts: 96


« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2012, 11:50:22 AM »

Just keep in mind that the goal here is to boost participants and make the membership happy.  Boosting participation keeps our costs down.   5 steps starts keeps our older members happy.  Plate runnners cover the new folks or the guys that just don't want a bunch of runners. And the intent is only for the bronze fleet..not all fleets.
Good ice and no snow would solve most of the problem.  
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DN 5449
Class Member
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Posts: 361


« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2012, 12:44:39 PM »

Being new to the class and iceboating, I find this an interesting read.

I think at the regional and national level, participation in the 'plate-runner' division is low, primarily due to the competitive nature of those who actually travel to the bigger regattas. These are individuals who have the insert runners, composite masts, and the rest of the go fast gear. Those with aluminum masts and plate runners are usually more interested in club racing or cruising around a local lake for the day. I don't think creating a division for plate runners will encourage them to travel to these events. I know that is an extremely large assumption based on my perception, but from what I have observed, seems to be the reality.

I believe this is a great idea, but maybe more for the club level??

I don't speak for the majority, but I am slightly discouraged when trying advance. I have an outdated older boat, aluminum mast, plate runners in which I probably spent too much money and time fixing up, and can't sell. I went to the Western Challenge last year and was completely hooked. One of my buddies let me take out his C2 boat with all the trimmings, and since then have been gathering advice and opinions on what gear to acquire to become more competitive.

I get discouraged when I see the cost. I am not saying that I have to have everything nor do I feel iceboating is the most expensive sport. Iceboating is secondary to campaigning a one design sailboat in my household, so slipping an extra 4-5k past the finance warden is extremely difficult, especially after being interrogated about the expense report from the summer of racing.

The composite masts appear to be readily available at a reasonable cost, but competitive used insert runners are the hard to find. I can't blame anyone for not wanting to sell their finely profiled, perfectly sharpened runners that they have spent hours stoning. I am too competitive to show up to events with everything but the appropriate runners, but also don't have the extra cash on hand to get the runners I need to copy the leaders in the class.







I have some what the same feelings as Thistle,coming from a One Design background it is a little disconcerning to feel the playing field is not level.Like Geof said unless you are willing to seriously campaign these boats you have to be happy about going fast relatve to your skill and equipment level.
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Bob Gray
Class Member
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Posts: 184


« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2012, 04:59:14 PM »

I had a lengthy conversation with Rich about having a aluminum/ plate division at the NA/gold Cup. I feel that these two events are international races and I'm not  trying to be a snob, but these races shouldn't be a event for start up racers. I believe that the regional regattas are a great place to try these fleets and to get new racers their start in big events.

Being just shy of grand master status I kind of like the idea of the five step start but can live without it. As far as equipment goes, I agree that it's almost easier to get an older glass mast then an aluminum one. Min inserts are great but unless have some snow on the ice, quater inch runners will work just fine. Most high level racers are using inserts with 17-18 inches of crown. A set of bullnose plates with a little work can be profiled to 15-16 inches and that ain't that much different and you can keep up with the fleet with them.
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