The Club encourages all of its members to volunteer to help out with regatta organization. There is no need to be shy or think you don’t know what to do as there are numerous club training courses for mark layers, committee boat crew and aspiring race officers. We are also very keen that people progress onto a RYA nationally recognized course whenever possible.
What sort of commitment will be needed? This varies but we would really like you to attend one of the club courses then help out with two weekends so that you can hone your skills. Many of the race team do much more than this and it is possible to progress up the tree and take part in Worlds Championships and even the Olympics if you want to.
Why do we do it? Two main reasons – We enjoy it and there is a great satisfaction in running a high profile event really well, we work as a team and like all team things it is very rewarding, eventful and fun. We also learn an awful lot about seamanship, basic boat skills and race craft. The second reason – money, not for the volunteers (we normally get lunch, and beer provided) but for the Club. Events bring in money in entry fees and takings at the bar and social functions, without them the Club couldn’t survive, so we do need volunteers to make it all happen.
What equipment do we use? The Club has two of its own mark laying RIB’s, and generally uses members boats Zenobia and Big Blue as committee boats. We have full sets of race equipment such as flags, sound signals, flash bang guns, and race buoys with anchor equipment. We are able to run two regattas at the same time if we have enough volunteers!
Training? During the Autumn & Winter we run several evening courses to cover general Race Committee duties such as flags, timing, scribe, setting the course. These are really good for increasing your knowledge of what goes on and why, and very useful for sailors as well! We break it down to bite size chunks and you will get to actually hoist and break flags, and call the timing.
We also run mark laying course several times a year, normally theory in the off season and a practical in March. Its great fun and really useful to gain the knowledge and understanding to go out and lay those marks.
To supplement these we also run First Aid, VHF and Powerboat Courses once a year.
If you are thinking of getting involved then do contact the Rear Commodore Sailing with your details you will find that being out on the water is as rewarding for the race team as it is the sailors!