I received an interesting email yesterday...
As a way of introduction, I am going to be the PRO at the Laser Nationals at Milwaukee next August.
We are neck deep into the long range planning for the event and the first question is should there be three or four days of racing? The ILCA has replied, "do what ever you think is right." (or pretty close to that.) A fair answer but a bit vague.
Someone had a novel thought, should we ask our customers??
Since you have an established forum for such things, may I hijack your agenda and ask for feedback?
Wow. I am honored that this guy, John Strassman, should think of my blog as a good place to seek feedback from his "customers" at the Laser Nationals next year. Although I have a fair number of Laser sailor readers, and no doubt a handful who are considering going to the Nationals, many of my readers are not Laser sailors and have other reasons for stopping by here. But I'm glad to help...
John continues with some more questions...
Since we are having the Standard, Radial and 4.7's, would the 4.7's feel slighted if we had a separate (but still real swell) race course. This would allow us to (hopefully) minimize the delays waiting for the previous start to clear the course.
Additionally, if we are anticipating to have have multiple starts (split fleets) for both the Standard and Radial fleets, what if we stagger the start times from day to day, for example:
1100 warning first division Standard rig with second division soon thereafter on full trap course. Max two races for day
1330 warning first division Radial with second division ASAP - up to three races
1100 warning first division Radial with second division soon thereafter. Max two races
1330 warning Standard rigs with second division ASAP - up to three races
and so on.
The problem is that with a little luck, a RC can run two divisions on a trap pretty much continually. Three starts will cause some delays to occur in order to clear the race course and four starts can quickly devolve into a furball of many impatient competitors sailing by the signal boat shooting daggers with their eyes while pounding on their air tanks.
We are assuming we are going to have a qualifying series going into a gold and silver series - again, any feedback?
We are seeking to have a great event at which the competitors will have great racing with a minimal amount of stress.
Any comments would be welcome.
So if you have any views on these issues please fire away in the comments. It would probably help John if you tell him if (a) you are a Laser sailor and (b) you are thinking of sailing in the US Nationals next year. I know that some non-Laser-sailing readers of this blog have strong experience in such areas as regatta organization and race management so, even if you are not a Laser sailor, please feel free to offer advice.