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Thread: LongPac NOR, SI, MEL discussion

  1. #11
    pogen's Avatar
    pogen is offline Sailing canoe "Kūʻaupaʻa"
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    The governor of New Jersey?

    It may be there was some group that last met a couple of years ago, but I for one never heard of it and I have been in the board loop for a year and a half, and gone to nearly every SHTP seminar and meeting for years, though I haven't done the race. There is certainly no mention of it in the Bylaws. I don't believe either the last LongPac or the last SHTP had any sort of input from a committee. Not that that might not be a good idea.

  2. #12
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    David, every SHTP I've been involved with had a group behind the scenes reviewing and at times vigorously debating proposed changes to our rules. When Synthia ran the 2008 race the meeting(s) were held at the Rooster/UK loft in Alameda. When I co-chaired the 2010 race the group met at RYC. I had a committee of 12 review my proposed changes. All the locals were former SHTP Race Chairs, plus I had Skip Allan's and Evans Starzinger's input via e-mail. Not all of my proposed changes were approved - I still think I had a good lifeline solution for the smaller boats but it got shot down.

    Rob (2010 co-chair) ran the 2012 race so changes were minor but they were not made in isolation. Then when George offered to chair the 2014 race he brought the committee back together to review his proposed changes. The meeting was at IYC and included Rob MacFarlane, Synthia, me, Rob Tryon, Mark Deppe and Max Crittenden. Jim Q was invited but could not attend. George was not able to see it through and Ben, Lucie and Brian ended up running the 2014 race. This is my recollection of the details and I may have a name or two wrong.

    This was the culture of the SSS and hopefully it still is. It is why our rules have stood the test of time and are appropriate for the kind of racing we do. The experienced skippers in the organization, as a group, have maintained the rules for our races. Now there is a big push to conform our rules to what US Sailing has developed for crewed racing which as Pat mentioned, had roots in the SSS rules for our local ocean races. BTW, the reason SSS had so much influence was we reached a point with NorCalORC where we had to say "If that's what you want to do, we'll keep what we have." NorCalORC came around, took our list and went from there. In exchange, SSS agreed to use the NorCalORC requirements for our races outside the Bay. Since we did that, participation in those races has dropped significantly and I would fully support returning to our previous rule set for them. We still use our own list for the races inside the Bay and participation in those races has increased.

    WRT the LongPac, when the NorCalORC rules were adopted for our local ocean races the LongPac was not included (as clearly stated by both NorCalORC and SSS). Since it is preparatory and a qualifier for the SHTP in the SSS progression, LongPac has tracked the SHTP rules. In fact, all that needs to be done is to take the SHTP rules and remove the major items that LongPac has traditionally not required (e-steering and SSB/satphone are the biggies).

    Finally - Organizationally, the challenge we face is that our officers are also our board and they turn over every two years. Membership itself is a year-to-year thing for many - we don't charge a big initiation fee to encourage long-term membership and involvement. Therefore things like a safety/rules committee are important to maintain long-term continuity. Every member of the board is appreciated and well-meaning, but the structure makes it easy to forget "how we got here" over the 37 years of our history. As I've written privately, I believe we are at a crossroads over these rules. Rather than conform to an outside set of generic rules I'd like to see the SSS continue to provide leadership in evaluating techniques, equipment and suitable boats for shorthanded and specifically, singlehanded, racing. This is what our founding documents state is the reason for the SSS's existence.

    If you've made it this far, this narrative is an appeal. In recent years we've lost some of our long-time experienced skippers. Those of you who live locally and have raced in the SHTP, or have many years of shorthanded Bay racing experience, are needed to keep SSS going as the organization it has always been. Some of you are still around but have pulled back from active involvement. Please contact the board and offer to help by speaking at a seminar or serving on the rules or race committees. Yes, you may be subject to some vigorous debate and push-back - it's part of what makes SSS what it has become: a capable group of skippers and the largest shorthanded sailing group in the country.
    Last edited by BobJ; 01-30-2015 at 12:17 PM.

  3. #13
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    It may be there was some group that last met a couple of years ago, but I for one never heard of it and I have been in the board loop for a year and a half
    1st rules meeting I attended (prior to there being a safety committee) was in 2002 or so and of course a group had meet for every STHP prior. The safety committee came about years later.

    The rules should not be changed at every race chairs whim. The safety committee and prior groups spend many many hours hashing this stuff out.

  4. #14
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    When Ben and I agreed to take over chairing last year's race from George Lythcott there was no mention of any Safety Committee meeting. Much Forum discussion and anger resulted. In adapting the 2013 LONGPAC and the 2014 TransPac NOR and RRCS, my guidelines were the prior races. Before publication a committee of rigorous readers, past race chairs and others, combed through them.

    As it happened, one reader who was very active in the creation on the NCORC MEL did a copy and paste of that section.

    Because SSS was active in the NCORC meetings, and agreed to follow that first edition,SSS lost a lot of the sail wit what ya got attitude in our Race Committee rules.

    To the extent that it was feasible in the changing climate of safety and individual responsiblity, the SSS Standing SIs stated that the LongPac and TransPac are excluded from them.

    If there exists a Safety Committee, perhaps their meetings could be noticed in advance? Our their recommendations be posted?

  5. #15
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    Traffic in the Bay area just sucks, maybe we shouldn't let Governor Christy anywhere near the Bay area Bridge District.

  6. #16
    pogen's Avatar
    pogen is offline Sailing canoe "Kūʻaupaʻa"
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    LongPac MER is up (again)!


    http://sfbaysss.org/main/LongPacMer2015

  7. #17
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    Thanks and the new one seems manageable.
    The number of flares is rough, but at least I don't need to design an e-rudder (drogue seems ok) or get a trysail fitted.

  8. #18
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    Thank you!

    ~$500 in flares - anyone know of a good place to get these?

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by bizirka View Post
    Thank you!

    ~$500 in flares - anyone know of a good place to get these?
    are flares ever on sale at the boat show?

  10. #20
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    I don't think the good SOLAS flares are, and they'd get snapped up fast if they were.

    I assume the extra flares (vs. what NorCalORC requires, for example) are because of the ramp-up to SHTP requirements? Since EPIRB's have become the primary "I'm in trouble" signal while flares are to help rescuers spot you on scene, my opinion is the lesser number required by NorCalORC is adequate. Moreover, life rafts are required for LongPac and there are flares in the raft if you had to abandon ship.

    Finally, we all know they expire (unlike most of our other safety gear). I bought a whole set for Pacific Cup and they'll barely still be in-date for the 2016 SHTP.

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