Conclusions of the arrogant and stupid

Nobody joining this thread has to admit to arrogance or stupidity – but it might not be a bad idea!

Our post mortem from last Saturday, here in Colwyn Bay/Llandudno, has produced the following tentative conclusions.

For race organisers

With the 20 x 20 vision of hindsight, the idea of making 22 April the World Day for the NZ Postal Classic was probably not a good one. For this I take responsibility. When Doug promoted his event in Buffalo, I kicked myself for not having thought of the idea and went out of my way to promote similar events elsewhere. I failed to appreciate initially that Doug’s timing was that of reliable ‘soft’ water in Buffalo. The consequence seems to have been that very few people did anything until the 22nd and that build programmes were allowed to slip.

On the other hand, people seem to have got together physically and to intend to do so again. They also mostly seem to have had a lot of fun. This is a big, big plus in itself.

I suggest that for the next event (autumn), competitors be positively encouraged to submit results as they happen, right from day 1 of the contest. Local clubs/groups should be encouraged to run events à la 22 April, but not all on the same day. The idea should be to keep interest up (and a target in sight) throughput the month. Colwyn Bay Model Yacht Club is contemplating running such an event in the autumn.

For competitors

Most of our lot come from big-boat backgrounds. What we have learned is probably obvious to you model yacht gurus, but it came as a nasty shock to us.

Basically, model yachts need to be much better prepared than real ones. A minor failure on a full-size yacht can generally be sorted out quite quickly, given a determined crew, a tool-box and a sensible supply of spares (often just string and shackles). The same failure on a model will often leave it totally disabled or sailing happily and uncontrollably off towards Ireland.

Further, much greater attention needs to be paid to water-proofing. That slight deck weep of no consequence whatsoever on a 30-footer turns into a substantial, electrics-disabling volume of bilge water on a 12-incher.

I know that all these things are pretty obvious – but they largely escaped us. Maybe others can learn from our mistakes – or tell us about their own huffalump traps that we have somehow missed.

As an event organiser I concur with Angus. I also begin to understand Brett’s frustration with our obsession with 22nd April when if any of us had bothered to read the original ‘race notice’, we would have recognised that the real intention was a programme spread across the month of April. That said in my neck of the woods it raised enthusiasm and interest in the Footy, which without the impetus of a ‘regatta’ probably wouldn’t have happened. In my home club what was a 'cute little novelty boat ’ may well be on its way to becoming a class. And you should have seen the look in the eyes of the kids who were passing by while we were racing, and stayed to watch.

Perhaps Brett could be asked to consider extending the deadline for race times until the end of May?
Remember this “NZL Postal Classic” regatta is only the first of what could be any number of so called regattas arranged by anyone in the world.
If any members of this forum are prepared to put in the time and effort then there could be a continous stream of events to enter.
Prizes are not necessarily the incentive to compete but are a nice addition to the bragging rights which are the reward for your efforts.

The other thing to consider is that the continuing quest to set the world`s fastest time for the internet course is still under way at all times.

It is wonderful to see the class beginning to blossom as the spring comes to the northern hemisphere.

I wouldn’t extend the NZL race. It would be unfair to those that may have taken their best shot and submitted times. I had 2 weekends where I could make attempts. One was cold, blustery with a bit of snow and the other was our regatta. The wind could have been better but we all had fun trying to understand the workings of this new class. It has some quite unique characteristics.

Next month will see a regatta in WI with traditional fleet races. My club will schedule a Footy day or 2 this season when the larger classes are off the pond. I’ll spread the word so anyone within driving distance can come down. I will only get better.:zbeer:

I currently only have times from one event…and one heat(from each entrant) only to boot.
So if there is an agreement to extending the racing period then it is still possible in my opinion.

I would like to move that:
The NZL Coastal Classic event qualifying period be extended until the thirty first day of May 2007.
Do I have a seconder?


I think you did well just to get a few people together in one place at the same time to sail this new class of boats. Since things are still considered developmental from all points of view, it’s much different than, say, an IOM regatta, and that kind of regatta would have gone off without a hitch, besides the usual one or two problems. I could see no arrogance nor stupidity on your part; just the hopeful honest efforts that would have gone into any other class regatta, and a fair amount of learning that Footies needed something ‘different.’

If you can keep in touch with the others, urging them to ‘perfect’ their boats & rigs, then I’m sure you’ll be happy to invite them back on some casual weekend, have a few successful rounds, and then schedule an ‘official’ event.

We all need to develop the idea, do some more building, sailing and just plain getting used to how the Footy reacts to different wind, surf, and mechanical things. In the meantime, you might even spot the perfect place to have your successful Footy regatta. :slight_smile:


I agree wholeheartedly with Tomohawk… You made a great effort to make it happen Angus and that is the important point. Better weather would have made a world of difference as well as better model preperation but we all have to start somewhere. Being brave (or foolish as in my case) enough to stand up and do it is worthy of praise in itself.

It is my turn to stick my head above the parapet on the 20th May, we will be learning as we go too. My experienced OOD is not able to attend now so yours truly looks like stepping into those shoes too… and I will expect most gentlemanly behaviour! The entry list is looking promising, we have 9 boats on the water as it stands. The fleet is showing an interesting mix of types too.

See you there…!