Jul 17, 2012, 10:27 AM
Post #4 of 7
From Terry Bischoff:
Re: [The Publisher] Coach and support boat rules at regattas
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During my tenure as a PRO at the OCR in Miami, I witnessed a number of incidents regarding coach boats. One of the worst, was a number of Stars under tow after completion of their race. These tows went directly through a circle of 470s which were still racing. The worst example was one Star towed directly through the gate of the 470 course, totally ignoring the waves form the 470 race committee. The following morning the Star PRO issued a stern warning to any repeating the previous days' rude behavior. But why was this necessary?
Another example of the disregard by coaches toward others than their team is displayed by their lack of interest to teams without the resources to employ coaches. In Miami to get from the US Sailing Center to the racing area can be very difficult especially in light winds. One year a team of 470 women without a coach asked me as the PRO if I could arrange tows for them, as they were barely moving out from the Miami shore. They told me that their requests to other teams with coaches were ignored or bluntly denied. I personally monitored their situation the next morning, and probably against my protocols arranged that they were at least towed out from the islands and into Biscayne Bay itself, where they could find some wind. Again, a complete lack of sportsmanship. Other examples of lack of interest to other competitors by coaches could be related, but I think the above examples make the point.
Personally, I think that coaches should be eliminated from Championship events in all classes, not only Olympic classes. I highlight Championships here, not beer can or regattas of lessor status, but some might disagree here also. If you have reached the finals of your class champs, you should be able to continue on without a coach. I exclude high school and collegiate racing here, where coaching is necessary as in a basketball game. Level the playing field, it would be very good for the sport at this level.