In an effort to encourage new blood into the sport of powerboat racing in general and in particular the British Club Championships series, the committee of ORDA would like to make the following offer of assistance to new teams that might be considering entering their first race or series of races in 2012.
To that end we have considered the various reasons why new teams are put off entering events, and we now aim to try to remove as many barriers as possible to prevent this happening.
One of the things we think might be putting people of is simply the amount of red tape and possible confusion that is surrounding issues like licences, measurement certificates, race entry, safety equipment etc.
We also understand what a daunting feeling it is for new teams to in effect be the new kid at school, and we want to make any race teams first weekend an enjoyable and satisfying experience and the more we can do to take away that feeling of dread and make them as welcome as possible, the better in our opinion.
To that end we would therefore like to offer any new or inexperienced team the option of a mentoring programme, whereby we will arrange for experienced powerboat racers to in effect lead teams by the hand through their first few races, and until such time as they feel they no longer need assistance.
This mentoring will include, assistance will all paperwork, and processes prior to the event in order to achieve the correct licence status and race entry in the most cost effective way possible given the amount of races intended to enter. Obviously this could be full licence if entering the whole series or event licences if just doing one or two events. It will include things like measurement certificates or log books, licence applications, where to get medicals if required, club membership, how and where to get race training, the applicable rules etc. In fact anything that is needed to be done pre event.
It will also include a pre event boat and kit inspection, with advice on any shortfall, any non compliance with the rules etc, so that when the boat arrives at a given event the crews are confident that they will not have any scrutineering and or compliance issues.
It will include assistance in the provision of any shortfall in kit and or safety equipment. We know for instance that to go and buy two helmets, two life vests etc, just to have a go in one race is prohibitively expensive, and we also know that there is a lot of spare kit floating around, so we will aim to beg, borrow or steal anything the crew are short of.
We will stand by the teams side, the whole way through their first couple of events, taking them through the race control procedures, preparation of boat for scrutineering, the scrutineering itself, launching procedures, showing them who is who, and what is what etc, so that the teams will in effect be led by the hand through the whole weekend and out to the start line, with as little stress as possible, and in the belief that if there are any issues, they have an experienced person by their side to show them how to deal with the problem, and in this way they will be absolutely confident of getting to the start line on time and in good shape.
We will do all of the above completely free of charge, and with no obligation on the crews whatsoever. We simply want more people to come and have a go.
This is obviously not the only thing that stops people going racing, and as stated our overall objective is to encourage new teams to come and have a go, and see what they think. Therefore we would welcome comments from any person to either email@example.com
about this subject, and to let us know what else it is that stops or deters new teams from entering.
Whilst we unfortunately cannot do anything financially to help the new teams, pretty much anything else is up for grabs, so please, if you are, or have ever considered coming racing, but something other than financial reasons have stopped you, then let us know what those reasons are. You never know, we might just be able to do something about it for individual teams, and if we get a common thread, then perhaps we can introduce other programmes such as this.
Your comments and or requests for mentoring will be very welcome.
Mark Brewster and Neil Jackson
For and on behalf of the ORDA committee