To All Organisers
First – Thank you for all the time and effort you all put in to making our sport a success.
The 2017 season seems to have gone well but we must start to look to next season and 2018.
Please could you start sending me updated risk management plans for next year. There are no new requirements, and what we have had this year is acceptable. I would just ask that you consider what is in it and update it with respect to any issues you have had this year. There is no prescribed format, as different site owners expect you to comply with their formats and we don’t wish to get you to do this twice. For those of you running races in Scotland, where you also have to copy to the SCA, Craig Douglas and I will endeavour to ensure that this does not result in any problem for you.
Plans should be site specific and consider site issues and cognisant of the conditions that may reasonably be expected, so for example it is reasonable to expect consideration of hypothermia for races in the north in February but not an expected problem in August in the deep south. There is no reason not to share understanding with others that run races at the same location, but each race needs an individual plan. All plans should be available before the ACM in November so that we can sign off and confirm the calendar for next year. Given that plans are accepted before the ACM there will be no need to forward updated plans during the season next year even if you do have to update them to take account of circumstances.
Next – Please can you consider costing of races such that they are designed to be fully self funding without the need for external funding. The Slalom committee only has funds that accrue from the levies on races. Races that get additional funding from the committee are therefore getting it at the expense of other races, and while this is fine when the unexpected happens it should not be planned in. The sport does not, unfortunately, benefit from any sponsorship or other funding to run the Divisional Race programme. That said, discussion with the Slalom Committee in advance of an event where cost problems are identified is always welcome.
Please can you also think about the total number of paddlers you intend to race, including judges and practice runs etc. We are aware that there are races that are clearly oversubscribed and that getting paddlers on the water is desirable and good for financial viability. However the sport is very dependent on volunteers for judging, timing and the plethora of other jobs that need to be done. Your race plan should take account of available day length and not expect any of the volunteers to be working and covering for more than eight hours of racing in any one day and less for those needing to concentrate on judging etc. You should allow 30 second intervals for practice races as a minimum and one minute intervals for racing for all except C1 women where it is prudent to allow 90 seconds. The course needs to be allowed to clear between classes, so you should consider at least two and preferably three minutes between classes. A lunch break is desirable and appreciated, but is not mandatory. It is prudent to discuss with the timing and judging teams if you are using the national teams in advance of the race what your time plans are if it is a big race in terms of numbers.
I am very happy to contacted if there are issues that are causing problem or indeed anything where I may be of assistance.
All the best
Slalom Competition Management