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1 hour ago, BobBill said:

I am screwed...I yell at myself...

Lol...does it make you want to quit and find a better boat?

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Hi Ajax,

As I said, the single-handed fleet in Plymouth is by far the biggest and growing whilst the IRC and cruiser divisions are declining year on year.

Round the cans the fully crewed yachts are quicker on sail handling but racing offshore and across the English Channel when the single-handed and fully crewed start at the same time and sail the same course the single-hander's often win.

Yes,  the skipper has a team but it's not a team sport.

Adrian Bishop

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On 8/5/2017 at 4:57 PM, Couta said:

Hadn't seen this vid before - brilliant insight into the AC and how far we've come. As an Aussie, loved watching Gentleman Jim and his crew....there's even a brief shot of a very young John Bertrand as Port trimmer.....and yes, the approach of Bill Fricker is exemplary !

 

Ficker

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10 hours ago, Ajax said:

Unless you are singlehanding and pulling all of the strings while on the helm, yes, it is a team sport.

I get what you're saying about the owner carrying most of the burden but when the crew is onboard, if they are hiking and trimming, it's a team sport. Don't discount or belittle their contribution.  If you really value their contribution so little, I suggest you take up singlehanding.

This.

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1 hour ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Hi Ajax,

As I said, the single-handed fleet in Plymouth is by far the biggest and growing whilst the IRC and cruiser divisions are declining year on year.

Round the cans the fully crewed yachts are quicker on sail handling but racing offshore and across the English Channel when the single-handed and fully crewed start at the same time and sail the same course the single-hander's often win.

Yes,  the skipper has a team but it's not a team sport.

Adrian Bishop

by far one of the dumbest things i've seen on SA... and i've been here since Bull Gator and HWSNBN were here... If you as the owner are working on your own while racing then you did not train your crew properly and did not cultivate a team atmosphere. You failed, not your crew. I have been an owner, i have been a crew. Dinghies, big boats, good crews, bad crews, good helms, bad helms... There's no "I" In team  but there are two U's in "you're a cunt". 

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Mustang 1  Please do not reply to posts if you can't be bothered to read them .   Abuse means you have just lost the argument.

As I said before in a previous post _

 

Training again is the issue.  

But it is difficult with a crew list. These are people who whilst keen are generally not very experienced. For example the "Autumn Series"  is racing every Sunday for seven weekends.  It is nearly impossible to get even the keenest crew to commit to seven Sundays in a row. The do have other commitments family and wifes.    But all of them can do some of it. So the crew rotates.  Every yacht has the same problem so it evens out.

This does make training even more difficult - they can take the time to train - but that would be at the expense of time going racing!!  They can race or train but can't do both. As a skipper you are in the awkward position of having a really well trained crew  - or - a crew that has time to race with you - but not both!

They EXPECT you as skipper to know what to do AND TO TELL THEM.   Being really polite and letting the crew make their own mistakes and "fuck up" is the surest way to the back of the fleet and then nobody wants to race with you.  The crew then suspect you don't know what you're doing either.  However being assertive, spotting problems before they happen  (and this doesn't mean yelling) proves you know what your doing and gets and.you to the front of the fleet and everybody's happy. Crew like assertiveness if you win and will stay with you.   Obviously as time goes on crew get better and the yacht gets very quiet.

A skipper that thinks he's on some corporate training day out and doesn't say if the crew are doing it wrong is dangerous, unseamanlike and generally right at the back of the fleet. Nobody wants to sail at the back of the fleet, so the experienced crew leave and the new crew are novices and have even less of a clue and the situation gets worse.

 

I think is some confusion here between shouting at the crew - a really bad idea - and giving clear instructions that can be heard in the noisy environment of a yacht race.

The quality of discussion seems to have dropped and I'm getting bored with this.

Adrian Bishop

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I doubt there's a single amateur crewed boat in the world that has exactly the same crew for every race over a season. It's part of managing the crew list - making sure that enough people with enough knowledge are due to be onboard for each race. Most boats I know have about 25-30 people on the list to be able to race with a crew of 7. It's on of the reasons I prefer 3 man keelboats - no railmeat & everybody's busy. But even then, we have a list of about 6, for 8-10 weekends a year and 1 full week (Cowes). 

If you don't like organising people to ensure the boat's crewed properly, there's always crochet. 

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One.  All we need, as we've all been sailing together for long enough. More for boat tuning than anything else. 

Anybody new gets a morning to run through the ropes. 

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2 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

A skipper that thinks he's on some corporate training day out and doesn't say if the crew are doing it wrong is dangerous, unseamanlike and generally right at the back of the fleet. Nobody wants to sail at the back of the fleet, so the experienced crew leave and the new crew are novices and have even less of a clue and the situation gets worse.

There is an option in between standing at the wheel barking commands, and allowing your crew to get hurt and break your boat.  Lead, don't direct.  Be ready to assist, not demand.  Put someone you trust on the helm, and float if you need to help rookie crew. 

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If you're teaching crew with limited experience, make sure their job is as easy as possible for them to do. Don't expect things to go smoothly if you're sailing shorthanded with new people. Yeah, plenty of reasonable sailors might be able to manage the foredeck single handed, or blow the winch while sheeting in the new one in the tack, but it's too many instructions for a newbie.

Do you brief your crew before manoeuvres? How much warning do they have that you're going to tack? Is it time for them to run through their job in their head and ask you any questions? Perhaps ask them what they intend to do to check their understanding? This means advance planning. Prepare for a tack 2-3 minutes before you need it. Talk about the hoist half way up the upwind leg. Don't gybe without 5 minutes notice, even more notice for the drop if you can manage it. You might be busy all the time, but a lot of crew have downtime on the rail to think about these things and plan amongst themselves if they know they're coming up. I'm aware sometimes you need to respond faster then that when other boats are around, but with newbies, 9/10 times you should be sailing proactively rather than reactivity. Do that and the 1/10 will run a lot smoother.

It's not a fast way to sail, but if you're crew has time to think about what they're doing, or has even told you what they're going to do and they still get it wrong, well, it then justifys a loud talking to. If you can get even one experienced person on the boat you can designate all the leadership to them, they might just teach another crewmember and you can have 2 experienced teachers on your boat then. Put them in the centre of the boat, not back with you so you can moan about your crew together.

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54 minutes ago, sshow bob said:

Thank you for today's motto... 

Also like the alternative, as it seems to apply especially today. There's just no talking to some people.

There's no I in team but there are three U's in shut the fuck up.

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11 minutes ago, CrushDigital said:

Also like the alternative, as it seems to apply especially today. There's just no talking to some people.

There's no I in team but there are three U's in shut the fuck up.

Excellent!  

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As far as the difficulty in training "rotating crew", I found that one solution is to have a reliable "core" of 2 or 3 knowledgeable people who were pretty regular. Then, you use them to guide the more irregular members during the race. Some people use a "crew boss" to ride herd on a bunch of irregulars so the skipper can focus on driving and getting his head out of the boat (in the absence of a tactician.)

While it's true that each race is also a "practice" in the sense that it's an opportunity to learn and improve, I find that teaching concepts from scratch during a race is a bad, bad idea. You've simply got to have practice days and the crew has to come out.  My God, if I had used the first race of the series to "teach" spinnaker operations after moving up from non-spin, we'd have been stuck in the mud for sure.

Although I agree with some of Adrian's points, I patently disagree with him and believe that when there's crew, it's a team sport. No matter how shitty the race, I would thank the crew each Wednesday night for their efforts.

I still ain't goin' back to having crew on my boat though. ;)

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At one point in my late teens I sailed Solings with a world champion skipper. He was the foulest, worst tempered skipper I ever had. He would scream insults and curse at other skippers, the race committee, anyone near enough to hear...but not at his own crew. It was an amazing learning experience but I stopped sailing with him after one season as it was just too negative an experience overall.

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3 minutes ago, sailronin said:

At one point in my late teens I sailed Solings with a world champion skipper. He was the foulest, worst tempered skipper I ever had. He would scream insults and curse at other skippers, the race committee, anyone near enough to hear...but not at his own crew. It was an amazing learning experience but I stopped sailing with him after one season as it was just too negative an experience overall.

When too young to have a say in the matter, I crewed for my grandfather who was a champ in several classes. He behaved much the same way, although he had no tolerance for ignorance or error. I learned a heck of a lot from him, but as soon as I did have a say in the matter, I started sailing with other people.

-DSK

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35 minutes ago, Ajax said:

 My God, if I had used the first race of the series to "teach" spinnaker operations after moving up from non-spin, we'd have been stuck in the mud for sure.

 

Dont be so sure!  This reminds me of a race where I was the clueless crew on a Bucc 18.  I had next to zero experience with a symmetrical spin.  I watched a bunch of videos the night before in hopes of picking something up.  When we got out on the water, I asked the skipper, an excellent sailor, to walk me through, step by step, a launch and takedown.  He patiently did so.  I managed through a couple of WL laps and it came down to a tight finish.  We had an offset reaching finish that we couldn't hold the kite on so I had to drop it at the leeward mark.  I completely botched it, but managed to keep it out of the water.  By the time we crossed the finish line, I was wearing the spinnaker like a dress.  No yelling, but definitely some laughing and pointing.  We eked it out.

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People want to do a good job and they want to be appreciated. Training and consideration goes a long way.

Yelling from the back of the boat to someone on the foredeck on how to lead a spin sheet is rarely going to turn out good. Yelling at anyone on the boat is going to make them feel bad and often isn't going to help them do it right anyhow. While being yelled at their brain will freeze and they will continue to get it wrong. So this yelling is counter productive. Get at least one good sailor and send them forward to show the offending bow person how to do it, quietly. OR stop the whole process and have the bow person come back where you can explain it quietly. Yeah, sometimes you need to yell, "STOP". Then, "Hey Julie, come here for a second, will you please?" Use their name when you speak to them.

It will test your skill as a skipper. But do it right, give people LOTS of positive feed back about how well they are doing and how much you appreciate them, provide cold beer afterwards, shake everyone's hand when they get off the boat. Do this right and they will come back. Soon you will have a few who are getting good at it. They will be your core.

Even if they are not winning races, once they start getting better at their jobs. once they start doing well as a team running the boat, they will feel good about themselves and start having even more fun. It snowballs.

This is best done while training.

2. If he's yelling a lot and never gets anyone returning to crew with him, that should tell him something. Seems like OP has mostly untrained and unskilled crew, probably because he is no fun to sail with. they try it once and don't have a good time. Sayonara.

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6 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Mustang 1  Please do not reply to posts if you can't be bothered to read them .   Abuse means you have just lost the argument.

As I said before in a previous post _

 

Training again is the issue.  

But it is difficult with a crew list. These are people who whilst keen are generally not very experienced. For example the "Autumn Series"  is racing every Sunday for seven weekends.  It is nearly impossible to get even the keenest crew to commit to seven Sundays in a row. The do have other commitments family and wifes.    But all of them can do some of it. So the crew rotates.  Every yacht has the same problem so it evens out.

This does make training even more difficult - they can take the time to train - but that would be at the expense of time going racing!!  They can race or train but can't do both. As a skipper you are in the awkward position of having a really well trained crew  - or - a crew that has time to race with you - but not both!

They EXPECT you as skipper to know what to do AND TO TELL THEM.   Being really polite and letting the crew make their own mistakes and "fuck up" is the surest way to the back of the fleet and then nobody wants to race with you.  The crew then suspect you don't know what you're doing either.  However being assertive, spotting problems before they happen  (and this doesn't mean yelling) proves you know what your doing and gets and.you to the front of the fleet and everybody's happy. Crew like assertiveness if you win and will stay with you.   Obviously as time goes on crew get better and the yacht gets very quiet.

A skipper that thinks he's on some corporate training day out and doesn't say if the crew are doing it wrong is dangerous, unseamanlike and generally right at the back of the fleet. Nobody wants to sail at the back of the fleet, so the experienced crew leave and the new crew are novices and have even less of a clue and the situation gets worse.

 

I think is some confusion here between shouting at the crew - a really bad idea - and giving clear instructions that can be heard in the noisy environment of a yacht race.

The quality of discussion seems to have dropped and I'm getting bored with this.

Adrian Bishop

awe did a bad word hurt your feelings? you must be new here. 

Well fuck it, i'm waiting on my computer to finish crunching some numbers so lets have a go at this.

How much practice is enough? I dunno how long is a piece of string. It does not take much practice, relatively, in a low pressure environment to get things to really stick. Coach, talk through maneuver, do maneuver while talking through it, then try it again with no coaching. Debrief. Do it again. Do it again. Do it until its right. I've seen it time and time again. I've been a coach, i've been a crew. I've taught adults and children (and sometimes adult-children) how to sail and race - and a whole host of other things. IF you don't let people think on their own they never fucking will. 

Can't handle a dedicated practice day? Then get to the boat extra early and go out and run maneuvers before the race. Can't get out early? Guess you're not going back to the pub after racing. Can't do that? Guess you're just going to have to miss some races then. There is no substitute for practice.

Racing is an amazing venue to refine skills - but it is utter shit for developing them. 

The fact that YOUR crew expects YOU to yell commands throughout the entire race is a fundamental PROBLEM with you. Maybe your crew expects the driver, from the back of the damn boat, to yell to the bow and everything in between.........such that the entire goddamn race course can hear your incompetence........ but it could not be more the opposite for me and i guarantee the vast majority (or all...) other people racing. In the heat of a maneuver I don't want to hear a damn peep from anyone aside from systematic and established monosyllabic grunts from those around me such that i could fix a problem expeditiously  (mastman: tack in the water; pitguy: kite in the main block, etc,)..... I don't want to hear a peep from the driver, ever. The main trimmer, tactician, or some other designated person should make the all-crew announcements for tacking, hoisting, dousing, etc. After a maneuver if crew around me on the rail want to have a discussion about how we could do better - that may be the time to have a discussion. After the race is best. The only time i want or expect - on the boats i consistently race on - to hear from the driver is after the race. 

Look man, i've been doing this for nearly two decades and while there are some damn fine sailors out there who have been racing for far longer, i have worked hard to vary my experience as much as possible. I've raced with olympians, world champs, cup veterans, and a multitude of pros with varying levels of competence, and the constant between them all - particularly the most accomplished, is a quiet demeanor and thorough briefings and debriefings to book end a quiet maneuver.  

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25 minutes ago, mustang__1 said:

Look man, i've been doing this for nearly two decades and while there are some damn fine sailors out there who have been racing for far longer, i have worked hard to vary my experience as much as possible. I've raced with olympians, world champs, cup veterans, and a multitude of pros with varying levels of competence, and the constant between them all - particularly the most accomplished, is a quiet demeanor and thorough briefings and debriefings to book end a quiet maneuver.  

As Mustang-1 said, the very best don't have to yell at their crew. 

Training is important even with very experienced crew to get to the point where there is virtually no talking during an evolution. Ideally everyone knows what to do and when to do it. This get geometrically more difficult as the number of crew increases. On a two person dinghy my crew and I spoke about wind, waves, other boats positions and tactics. We never had to say anything about maneuvers except "tack", "set", "douse" or "gybe" because they were so well rehearsed there was nothing to say. But when sailing a 40-45 footer with a rotating crew pool there is a lot more instruction and direction required, but still no yelling.

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In one notable local instance we had an entire crew go on strike in the middle of a race 

due to a screaming skipper - they all went below and started pounding brewskis. 

(BTW the term "strike" used for labor disputes is of nautical origin - to demonstrate who 

was in charge, crew's used to "strike the sails" (take them down) to get management's attention.) 

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Mustang 1.  Because you don't seem to be able to read,  you are again completely missing the point. I know you might find reading a bit stressy - but try!  Get the basics right before you mouth off with your general ignorance.  Hurt your feelings.......?

As I said; 

I don't have any expectations of the crew -  that's the point. They are amateur sailors and whilst keen and perfectly capable of cruising their own yachts,  sometimes the finer points of racing are lost on them.  Correctly rigging all the spinnaker lines, Correct pole height,  Fine trim, Changing gear, VMG, How the Lay Lines change in a varying tidal stream, Is the shift persistent or oscillating?  Windward or Leeward drop?      Er...........

Whilst every race they are learning, the point is they are learning and rely on me as the skipper to know.   

My old crew who thought he knew better. He relied on his crew to know.   They didn't.    I won and he came last  - and now he can't get crew because nobody wants to sail with someone at the back of the fleet who doesn't know what they are doing. 

I have plenty of crew because they love sailing at the front of the fleet.  And they rely on me to organize them and to know enough to get them there!

 

You might have very experienced crew who know what the "Pit" is and understand the main can be trimmed,  (rather than just pulled in), but in Plymouth the standard is a bit lower. Crew generally come from cruising sailors who fancy a bit of racing..  If you asked them what the "Pit" was,   they really wouldn't know  and an instruction of  "let the pole uphaul down a bit" would be greeted with complete incomprehension.  As I was asked one time.....  -  "what's the point of tacking all the time on windshifts - doesn't it eventually even out?"

Shouting at the crew is completely wrong and I never do it because I wouldn't like to be shouted at myself  - but I do give instruction - until it is not needed.  If I didn't give instruction nothing would happen and we would be sailing around at the back of the fleet with a pissed off crew.    No ..... "the entire goddamn race course can  - NOT - hear your incompetence"..   because I am generally so far ahead!   

This is amateur racing with amateur crew and they expect to be instructed  (at least for the first half of the season) and they continue sail with me because I do know what I'm doing and can tell them. The results prove this.  If I left the crew to work it out by themselves (and I kept very quiet)  -   they would sail very competently at cruising speed around the course until they would have to put the engine on to finish by the time limit.

Top end racing with very experienced crew is a joy (and very quiet),  I know I've done a lot of it,  but down here in Plymouth there are plenty of keen crew but very few experienced crew.  This is a problem for everybody in the fleet.   Racing with novice crew is a lot more challenging than with experienced crew,  I know,  I've done both.  

Again,  and this pretty much a problem that apply's to most of the fleet;  you spend a season training everybody up and by the end of the season they are generally getting most things together:  then next season they change jobs and move away, the wife puts her foot down, they go cruising, take up badminton, have a baby, buy their own yacht......... etc,   and  you have to start again with nearly a new team.

There is a lot of discussion on this,  but having to train up new novice crew all the time is part of the reason the racing fleet is declining and the single-handed fleet is expanding.

 

Now,  back on the topic of "Is sailing a team sport?".

I didn’t mean to add any more to this post but there was an interesting discussion at the Yacht Club last night on this topic.   This relates to “instructing” the crew, is sailing a team sport? and decline of racing fleets.

The question was  -   “Is sailing a team sport?” or “Is it a Skipper’s sport where the Skipper as part of running a yacht organizes a team?”  A bit of a subtle distinction  - but important.  

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

I will say it again as I’m beginning to get the hang of this forum !   - 

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

The conclusion was a unanimous   “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport” -  mostly  for the following reasons:

The Skipper generally buys the yacht, maintains it, gets it race ready , organizes the crew , races it and pays for everything.  If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.

Yacht racing is seen as a Skipper vs Skipper sport not a team vs team sport.  The cup goes to the Skipper.

If it was a team sport crews would buy their own yachts and race them as a team,  they would pay equal shares and rotate the Skipper amongst themselves.

If it was a team sport crews would organize their own training.  If it is a Skipper’s  sport the Skipper organizes the training.

There was some discussion on the lines of – An owner can pay for and organise a team  - as in football.  However,  you never see the football owner/manager actually playing with the team.  If the skipper organises the crew and pays for everything and they (without the skipper) go away and race the yacht it’s a team sport.    If the Skipper , sails the yacht during the race it’s a Skipper’s sport.

Basically,  the conclusion was – If the Skipper sails the yacht it’s a Skipper’s sport,    if a team gets together as a syndicate share the costs,  the maintenance and  race the yacht together with a rotating skipper for each race,  it’s a team sport.

The Commodore of the club was 100% behind the “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport conclusion.

 

OK - now I wait for the flack! 

 

Note to our American cousins   - “Play nicely or we won’t let you back in the Commonwealth!”.

 

Adrian Bishop

 

 

 

 

 

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42 minutes ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Note to our American cousins   - “Play nicely or we won’t let you back in the Commonwealth!”.

If we were so lucky as to be let back in, would we have to use the word "whilst?"  That's a deal breaker for me.  

I hope your crew organizes a strike against their despot on a heavy air spin leg as you approach a leeward shore.  

 

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"Whilst" is in the dictionary  - a conjugation of while.  You should buy a dictionary, you might learn something.   I keep hearing about declining standards in American education, but really!

I'm not a despot.  The crew like sailing with me because I know what I am doing,  they trust me and we win.

You obviously have never won a yacht race in your life.   

There,   I'm getting the hang of SA!

 

Adrian Bishop

Who would you rather have  - Her Majesty the Queen or Donald Trump?  Point made.

 

 

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On 8/5/2017 at 5:40 AM, Joe Olson 30 said:

Let me defend older skippers everywhere. I race a 38 foot updated IOR boat. I have been racing since 1970. I have mobility problems but can get to the helm but not run around the boat.  I am willing to teach younger crew members to sail. I hear on the docks that I yell at them Lets examine that. As we get ready to leave the dock, I am back at the helm and the crew is all over the boat. I am teaching.  I have to say things like, "do not run the genoa sheets under the life lines and inside of the shrouds". of course I could shut up and let them do that but things get messy in a hurry. I similarly try to tell them not to run the spinnaker sheets through the bow pulpit. Nasty result that one.

This constant instruction (please wrap the lines clockwise around the winch, both port and starboard. Oh, port is over here and starboard is over there.)

I had one young lady who assumed that she knew and understood far more than she did. I recall two outstanding moves she made. The first time when were sailing in about 20 knots of breeze and I asked her to ease the main sheet and she blew the main halyard.  One experienced racer who was on the foredeck with her during another race told her she was going to kill someone.  Her crowning moment came after a sail as we were heading in to the harbor. She was curling up spare lines. Suddenly the main boom started swaying wildly side to side. She had disconnected the main sheet and was stuffing it in the sheet bag on the cabin side.

My point is, I do not yell at the crew. I issue commands and instructions. Since the person I am talking to is often 35 feet away, I speak loudly rather than whisper.

I think the problem is the modern generation resent being told what to do by anyone.

Have you had your hearing tested? No insults intended... Having sailed with someone with a profound hearing loss developed later in life, I can attest to the painful irony of lines like "I'M NOT YELLING." (Of course, to you it sounds that way.)

Maybe this doesn't apply to you, and the comments in this thread about leadership, practice, and patience are all that matter. Otherwise, it might be worth considering the tone and volume of what comes out from between your ears. 

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4 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Mustang 1.  Because you don't seem to be able to read,  you are again completely missing the point. I know you might find reading a bit stressy - but try!  Get the basics right before you mouth off with your general ignorance.  Hurt your feelings.......?

As I said; 

I don't have any expectations of the crew -  that's the point. They are amateur sailors and whilst keen and perfectly capable of cruising their own yachts,  sometimes the finer points of racing are lost on them.  Correctly rigging all the spinnaker lines, Correct pole height,  Fine trim, Changing gear, VMG, How the Lay Lines change in a varying tidal stream, Is the shift persistent or oscillating?  Windward or Leeward drop?      Er...........

Whilst every race they are learning, the point is they are learning and rely on me as the skipper to know.   

My old crew who thought he knew better. He relied on his crew to know.   They didn't.    I won and he came last  - and now he can't get crew because nobody wants to sail with someone at the back of the fleet who doesn't know what they are doing. 

I have plenty of crew because they love sailing at the front of the fleet.  And they rely on me to organize them and to know enough to get them there!

 

You might have very experienced crew who know what the "Pit" is and understand the main can be trimmed,  (rather than just pulled in), but in Plymouth the standard is a bit lower. Crew generally come from cruising sailors who fancy a bit of racing..  If you asked them what the "Pit" was,   they really wouldn't know  and an instruction of  "let the pole uphaul down a bit" would be greeted with complete incomprehension.  As I was asked one time.....  -  "what's the point of tacking all the time on windshifts - doesn't it eventually even out?"

Shouting at the crew is completely wrong and I never do it because I wouldn't like to be shouted at myself  - but I do give instruction - until it is not needed.  If I didn't give instruction nothing would happen and we would be sailing around at the back of the fleet with a pissed off crew.    No ..... "the entire goddamn race course can  - NOT - hear your incompetence"..   because I am generally so far ahead!   

This is amateur racing with amateur crew and they expect to be instructed  (at least for the first half of the season) and they continue sail with me because I do know what I'm doing and can tell them. The results prove this.  If I left the crew to work it out by themselves (and I kept very quiet)  -   they would sail very competently at cruising speed around the course until they would have to put the engine on to finish by the time limit.

Top end racing with very experienced crew is a joy (and very quiet),  I know I've done a lot of it,  but down here in Plymouth there are plenty of keen crew but very few experienced crew.  This is a problem for everybody in the fleet.   Racing with novice crew is a lot more challenging than with experienced crew,  I know,  I've done both.  

Again,  and this pretty much a problem that apply's to most of the fleet;  you spend a season training everybody up and by the end of the season they are generally getting most things together:  then next season they change jobs and move away, the wife puts her foot down, they go cruising, take up badminton, have a baby, buy their own yacht......... etc,   and  you have to start again with nearly a new team.

There is a lot of discussion on this,  but having to train up new novice crew all the time is part of the reason the racing fleet is declining and the single-handed fleet is expanding.

 

Now,  back on the topic of "Is sailing a team sport?".

I didn’t mean to add any more to this post but there was an interesting discussion at the Yacht Club last night on this topic.   This relates to “instructing” the crew, is sailing a team sport? and decline of racing fleets.

The question was  -   “Is sailing a team sport?” or “Is it a Skipper’s sport where the Skipper as part of running a yacht organizes a team?”  A bit of a subtle distinction  - but important.  

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

I will say it again as I’m beginning to get the hang of this forum !   - 

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

The conclusion was a unanimous   “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport” -  mostly  for the following reasons:

The Skipper generally buys the yacht, maintains it, gets it race ready , organizes the crew , races it and pays for everything.  If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.

Yacht racing is seen as a Skipper vs Skipper sport not a team vs team sport.  The cup goes to the Skipper.

If it was a team sport crews would buy their own yachts and race them as a team,  they would pay equal shares and rotate the Skipper amongst themselves.

If it was a team sport crews would organize their own training.  If it is a Skipper’s  sport the Skipper organizes the training.

There was some discussion on the lines of – An owner can pay for and organise a team  - as in football.  However,  you never see the football owner/manager actually playing with the team.  If the skipper organises the crew and pays for everything and they (without the skipper) go away and race the yacht it’s a team sport.    If the Skipper , sails the yacht during the race it’s a Skipper’s sport.

Basically,  the conclusion was – If the Skipper sails the yacht it’s a Skipper’s sport,    if a team gets together as a syndicate share the costs,  the maintenance and  race the yacht together with a rotating skipper for each race,  it’s a team sport.

The Commodore of the club was 100% behind the “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport conclusion.

 

OK - now I wait for the flack! 

 

Note to our American cousins   - “Play nicely or we won’t let you back in the Commonwealth!”.

 

Adrian Bishop

 

 

 

 

 

3 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

"Whilst" is in the dictionary  - a conjugation of while.  You should buy a dictionary, you might learn something.   I keep hearing about declining standards in American education, but really!

I'm not a despot.  The crew like sailing with me because I know what I am doing,  they trust me and we win.

You obviously have never won a yacht race in your life.   

There,   I'm getting the hang of SA!

 

Adrian Bishop

Who would you rather have  - Her Majesty the Queen or Donald Trump?  Point made.

 

 

Is there no tradition anymore?

Are there no longer any standards?

Have we forgotten what our forebearers intended for the rights and privileges of SA activity?

FUCK OFF NEWB, AND SHOW US YOUR WIFE/GF'S/MISTRESSES TITS.

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6 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Mustang 1.  Because you don't seem to be able to read,  you are again completely missing the point. I know you might find reading a bit stressy - but try!  Get the basics right before you mouth off with your general ignorance.  Hurt your feelings.......?

As I said; 

I don't have any expectations of the crew -  that's the point. They are amateur sailors and whilst keen and perfectly capable of cruising their own yachts,  sometimes the finer points of racing are lost on them.  Correctly rigging all the spinnaker lines, Correct pole height,  Fine trim, Changing gear, VMG, How the Lay Lines change in a varying tidal stream, Is the shift persistent or oscillating?  Windward or Leeward drop?      Er...........

Whilst every race they are learning, the point is they are learning and rely on me as the skipper to know.   

My old crew who thought he knew better. He relied on his crew to know.   They didn't.    I won and he came last  - and now he can't get crew because nobody wants to sail with someone at the back of the fleet who doesn't know what they are doing. 

I have plenty of crew because they love sailing at the front of the fleet.  And they rely on me to organize them and to know enough to get them there!

 

You might have very experienced crew who know what the "Pit" is and understand the main can be trimmed,  (rather than just pulled in), but in Plymouth the standard is a bit lower. Crew generally come from cruising sailors who fancy a bit of racing..  If you asked them what the "Pit" was,   they really wouldn't know  and an instruction of  "let the pole uphaul down a bit" would be greeted with complete incomprehension.  As I was asked one time.....  -  "what's the point of tacking all the time on windshifts - doesn't it eventually even out?"

Shouting at the crew is completely wrong and I never do it because I wouldn't like to be shouted at myself  - but I do give instruction - until it is not needed.  If I didn't give instruction nothing would happen and we would be sailing around at the back of the fleet with a pissed off crew.    No ..... "the entire goddamn race course can  - NOT - hear your incompetence"..   because I am generally so far ahead!   

This is amateur racing with amateur crew and they expect to be instructed  (at least for the first half of the season) and they continue sail with me because I do know what I'm doing and can tell them. The results prove this.  If I left the crew to work it out by themselves (and I kept very quiet)  -   they would sail very competently at cruising speed around the course until they would have to put the engine on to finish by the time limit.

Top end racing with very experienced crew is a joy (and very quiet),  I know I've done a lot of it,  but down here in Plymouth there are plenty of keen crew but very few experienced crew.  This is a problem for everybody in the fleet.   Racing with novice crew is a lot more challenging than with experienced crew,  I know,  I've done both.  

Again,  and this pretty much a problem that apply's to most of the fleet;  you spend a season training everybody up and by the end of the season they are generally getting most things together:  then next season they change jobs and move away, the wife puts her foot down, they go cruising, take up badminton, have a baby, buy their own yacht......... etc,   and  you have to start again with nearly a new team.

There is a lot of discussion on this,  but having to train up new novice crew all the time is part of the reason the racing fleet is declining and the single-handed fleet is expanding.

 

Now,  back on the topic of "Is sailing a team sport?".

I didn’t mean to add any more to this post but there was an interesting discussion at the Yacht Club last night on this topic.   This relates to “instructing” the crew, is sailing a team sport? and decline of racing fleets.

The question was  -   “Is sailing a team sport?” or “Is it a Skipper’s sport where the Skipper as part of running a yacht organizes a team?”  A bit of a subtle distinction  - but important.  

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

I will say it again as I’m beginning to get the hang of this forum !   - 

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

The conclusion was a unanimous   “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport” -  mostly  for the following reasons:

The Skipper generally buys the yacht, maintains it, gets it race ready , organizes the crew , races it and pays for everything.  If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.

Yacht racing is seen as a Skipper vs Skipper sport not a team vs team sport.  The cup goes to the Skipper.

If it was a team sport crews would buy their own yachts and race them as a team,  they would pay equal shares and rotate the Skipper amongst themselves.

If it was a team sport crews would organize their own training.  If it is a Skipper’s  sport the Skipper organizes the training.

There was some discussion on the lines of – An owner can pay for and organise a team  - as in football.  However,  you never see the football owner/manager actually playing with the team.  If the skipper organises the crew and pays for everything and they (without the skipper) go away and race the yacht it’s a team sport.    If the Skipper , sails the yacht during the race it’s a Skipper’s sport.

Basically,  the conclusion was – If the Skipper sails the yacht it’s a Skipper’s sport,    if a team gets together as a syndicate share the costs,  the maintenance and  race the yacht together with a rotating skipper for each race,  it’s a team sport.

The Commodore of the club was 100% behind the “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport conclusion.

 

OK - now I wait for the flack! 

 

Note to our American cousins   - “Play nicely or we won’t let you back in the Commonwealth!”.

 

Adrian Bishop

 

 

 

 

 

Good golly, you're an asshole.  I guess that's why nobody wants to sail with you.  

As said before, if you really believe the crew is only 1% responsible for the results, you really should just save yourself the trouble and race your boat singlehanded.  

 

By your logic, Soccer isn't a team sport, because the team isn't owned equally by the players, and not everybody gets to be the captain.   

 

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7 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Mustang 1.  Because you don't seem to be able to read,  you are again completely missing the point. I know you might find reading a bit stressy - but try!  Get the basics right before you mouth off with your general ignorance.  Hurt your feelings.......?

As I said; 

I don't have any expectations of the crew -  that's the point. They are amateur sailors and whilst keen and perfectly capable of cruising their own yachts,  sometimes the finer points of racing are lost on them.  Correctly rigging all the spinnaker lines, Correct pole height,  Fine trim, Changing gear, VMG, How the Lay Lines change in a varying tidal stream, Is the shift persistent or oscillating?  Windward or Leeward drop?      Er...........

Whilst every race they are learning, the point is they are learning and rely on me as the skipper to know.   

My old crew who thought he knew better. He relied on his crew to know.   They didn't.    I won and he came last  - and now he can't get crew because nobody wants to sail with someone at the back of the fleet who doesn't know what they are doing. 

I have plenty of crew because they love sailing at the front of the fleet.  And they rely on me to organize them and to know enough to get them there!

 

You might have very experienced crew who know what the "Pit" is and understand the main can be trimmed,  (rather than just pulled in), but in Plymouth the standard is a bit lower. Crew generally come from cruising sailors who fancy a bit of racing..  If you asked them what the "Pit" was,   they really wouldn't know  and an instruction of  "let the pole uphaul down a bit" would be greeted with complete incomprehension.  As I was asked one time.....  -  "what's the point of tacking all the time on windshifts - doesn't it eventually even out?"

Shouting at the crew is completely wrong and I never do it because I wouldn't like to be shouted at myself  - but I do give instruction - until it is not needed.  If I didn't give instruction nothing would happen and we would be sailing around at the back of the fleet with a pissed off crew.    No ..... "the entire goddamn race course can  - NOT - hear your incompetence"..   because I am generally so far ahead!   

This is amateur racing with amateur crew and they expect to be instructed  (at least for the first half of the season) and they continue sail with me because I do know what I'm doing and can tell them. The results prove this.  If I left the crew to work it out by themselves (and I kept very quiet)  -   they would sail very competently at cruising speed around the course until they would have to put the engine on to finish by the time limit.

Top end racing with very experienced crew is a joy (and very quiet),  I know I've done a lot of it,  but down here in Plymouth there are plenty of keen crew but very few experienced crew.  This is a problem for everybody in the fleet.   Racing with novice crew is a lot more challenging than with experienced crew,  I know,  I've done both.  

Again,  and this pretty much a problem that apply's to most of the fleet;  you spend a season training everybody up and by the end of the season they are generally getting most things together:  then next season they change jobs and move away, the wife puts her foot down, they go cruising, take up badminton, have a baby, buy their own yacht......... etc,   and  you have to start again with nearly a new team.

There is a lot of discussion on this,  but having to train up new novice crew all the time is part of the reason the racing fleet is declining and the single-handed fleet is expanding.

 

Now,  back on the topic of "Is sailing a team sport?".

I didn’t mean to add any more to this post but there was an interesting discussion at the Yacht Club last night on this topic.   This relates to “instructing” the crew, is sailing a team sport? and decline of racing fleets.

The question was  -   “Is sailing a team sport?” or “Is it a Skipper’s sport where the Skipper as part of running a yacht organizes a team?”  A bit of a subtle distinction  - but important.  

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

I will say it again as I’m beginning to get the hang of this forum !   - 

BEFORE EVERYONE JUMPS IN ON THIS THREAD  - PLEASE NOTE THIS DISTINCTION!  

The conclusion was a unanimous   “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport” -  mostly  for the following reasons:

The Skipper generally buys the yacht, maintains it, gets it race ready , organizes the crew , races it and pays for everything.  If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.

Yacht racing is seen as a Skipper vs Skipper sport not a team vs team sport.  The cup goes to the Skipper.

If it was a team sport crews would buy their own yachts and race them as a team,  they would pay equal shares and rotate the Skipper amongst themselves.

If it was a team sport crews would organize their own training.  If it is a Skipper’s  sport the Skipper organizes the training.

There was some discussion on the lines of – An owner can pay for and organise a team  - as in football.  However,  you never see the football owner/manager actually playing with the team.  If the skipper organises the crew and pays for everything and they (without the skipper) go away and race the yacht it’s a team sport.    If the Skipper , sails the yacht during the race it’s a Skipper’s sport.

Basically,  the conclusion was – If the Skipper sails the yacht it’s a Skipper’s sport,    if a team gets together as a syndicate share the costs,  the maintenance and  race the yacht together with a rotating skipper for each race,  it’s a team sport.

The Commodore of the club was 100% behind the “Sailing is a Skipper’s sport conclusion.

OK - now I wait for the flack! 

Note to our American cousins   - “Play nicely or we won’t let you back in the Commonwealth!”.

Adrian Bishop

 

Is soccer (sorry, my English colleague - football) a team sport?

How many soccer/football players own the stadium?  How many of them sign other players, or trade them, or cut them?  How many of them pay the salaries of the stadium staff?  How many of them hire and fire team employees?  How many of them draw up game plans?  How many of them get to take the trophy home?  (Yes, they get rings, which are given to them by, as you might guess, the team owner.)

The definition you give for a team sport means there are no team sports in the world.  Yes, the owner organizes a crew, owns the boat, pays for most things (not everything - in many large events the crew will often be asked to chip in) and takes home the trophies.  The same is true for soccer teams, baseball teams, football teams, basketball teams, hockey teams, rugby teams, cricket teams, and every other team sport under the sun.  But then, a team sport is not defined and never has been defined as investment of owner vs. investment of all others.  It's defined as whether success is determined by one person, such as golf or singles' tennis) or a group of people.

And the fact that the owner participates in the race makes it more of a team sport, not less.

If the crew is only 1% responsible for the results, why do you blather on about the need to train them?

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45 minutes ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Here we go again,  the ignorant American's who can't read.  

There you go again, a pompous gasbag Limey who thinks he is better than everyone else. 

 

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51 minutes ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Here we go again,  the ignorant American's who can't read.  

American's?  What the fuck is that apostrophe doing there?  

Whilst I learn to use archaic words, maybe you should return to the basics, i.e., the shit I learned in the first grade. 

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6 minutes ago, Legion of Modernrate Jack said:

Ahhh the old collectives plural trick! That is the forth`s time i fall for those this week past.

Hah. Your always' doing that!

BTW, is the rule above about "don't insinuate pedo" mean that you're not supposed to insinuate that somebody is pedantic?  Because I think that just happened. 

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18 minutes ago, Legion of Modernrate Jack said:
21 minutes ago, Lex Teredo said:


BTW, is the rule above about "don't insinuate pedo" mean that you're not supposed to insinuate that somebody is pedantic?  Because I think that just happened. 

i thaught the pedo thing was about corns and toenails?

Dang, I must be way behind the times, I thought it implied something about bicycles....

FB- Doug

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On 8/8/2017 at 4:09 AM, sshow bob said:

How does this keep coming up? If you alienate your crew you are going to need to learn to singlehand. You can instruct and direct without being perceived as an asshole.

I read about the top third of this thread and then realized it was composed of two groups of people - people who understand this point, and people who don't.

IF you have to yell at people, it's because they are failing at their jobs. If people are failing at their jobs, *it's because you failed to give them a job at which they could succeed.*

A competent leader knows his crew, looks ahead to upcoming challenges - be they moving to a new tack or moving to a new jobsite - and quietly makes the preparations necessary to succeed without breaching critical parameters.

In sailing, people having at least some fun is a critical parameter, just above 'not sinking.'

"Necessary preparations" include teaching people the names of things, how to lay a line into a winch and not lose a finger, and making sure that no individual crewmember has more to do than they can handle, given their skill level.

If you get out there and people are flailing all over, it's because you failed to prepare. 

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Perhaps I need to expand a bit on….  “ If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.”

You can quibble a bit on the numbers, but broadly it goes a bit like this :-

Getting a yacht to the start-line in racing trim is 50% of the race.   Purchasing the yacht, getting everything to work properly, maintaining it, insuring it, quibbling about the IRC certificate, new sails, tuning the rig,  dockage, yard bills, fixing everything  etc, ect, ect,   Yes,  the crew do help out a bit on maintenance and anti-fouling but most of it is my job. 

Organising the team to race it,  is 20%.   I recruit the crew, train them, organise the crew lists and make sure the yacht is fully crewed for each race.  Because I have a relatively large crew list I can make sure I have a full crew for each race.  Crew hate racing on yachts that are for one reason or another are under crewed on the day as it just makes life more difficult for everyone.

OK,  so now I’m near the start line with a legal and race ready yacht and a full crew that basically knows what to do. I hope!

5% is working out the bias on the line.  Nobody else seems to know how to do this.

20% is tactics and strategy,  I’m really good at this. This is how we win.  There is absolutely no point in going fast in the wrong direction!

10% is having a detailed knowledge of the racing rules.  The crew, surprisingly are really bad at this - nothing will persuade them to read the book!  I have a couple of spare copies to lend!!  But still it doesn’t work.  It just means that they are a liability in the protest room as they  don’t understand what was happening.

10% is F**k up avoidance. I’m the one that spots the sheets led the wrong way, things not clipped on, thinking ahead  etc, etc,

OK -  that 115% already  - but you get the idea!

 

Adrian Bishop

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8 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

"Whilst" is in the dictionary  - a conjugation of while.

 

 

Conjugation? We conjugate verbs - Chingo, chingas, chinga ... Try again.

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The same exact argument could be made about any other team sport. Every team has an owner of some sort or another, that doesn't change whether or not it's a team sport.

A disagreement this intractable is probably just going to go around in circles, but I'm glad you've found a kindred (clueless) spirit in your club's commodore.  On the other hand I feel terrible for the people hoodwinked into crewing on your boat.

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Remember -  if your just sitting at the back quietly and letting the crew do everything whilst paying for it all - they are probably just laughing at the "know nothing" skipper.  If they say "Tack now skipper" it might be a clue.

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Thank you guys  - I’ve enjoyed my time on the forum , but time has come to move on.  I’ve enjoyed the discussion and the banter.   I hope I gave as good as I got!  

Remember -  the 2015 Fastnet Race was won by a Two Handed crew. The father and son team of Pascal and Alexis Loison from Cherbourg, France on the JPK 10.10, Night and Day, finished the race in an elapsed time 3 days 18 hours 29 minutes and 57 seconds. After time correction using IRC, Night and Day won the Fastnet Challenge Cup.

Bye – Bye and I’m off sailing.

 

Adrian Bishop

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Yelling causes people to panic, then they fuck up simple tasks they would have otherwise accomplished.  It certainly doesn't get anything done.

This can be a problem even with experienced crew, hence the old adage among bowmen "shut up and drive."
 

Generally, you are a bad skipper if you are putting crew in a situation they are not ready for and where their lack of experience will become a safety concern.
You need to walk before you can run.  Put in a few training sessions and get the crew up to speed before you hit the race course.  Do a "learn to sail" with them.
If you don't have time for a dedicated training session, head out a few hours before the race starts and get the crew going through the motions.

Try to only have one or two learners on board at a time. (If you're racing.)  We can generally sail our boat quite effectively with 3 people.  If we have someone extra, we give them one job, like sitting next to the skipper on the mainsheet, and actually teach them to do that job.  It sounds more like you are relying on a whole crew of non-sailors to come out in a racing situation and do everything right from the start.  Think it through mate, that's never going to work!

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2 hours ago, Adrian Bishop said:

Perhaps I need to expand a bit on….  “ If the Skipper does 99% of the work it’s hardly a team sport.”

Crew hate racing on yachts that are for one reason or another are under crewed on the day as it just makes life more difficult for everyone.

 

Really?  Cause just yesterday I was the only one to show up for the race, and the skipper said, oh well, let's just doublehand it.  And it was a blast.  The most recent bullet we took in this same series, we had half the usual crew size and everyone had to double up on jobs.  And it was just as fun.  I think you'd find most people would prefer to sail undermanned than overmanned.  Keeping busy is fun.  Frankly I don't think you really get this whole crew thing.  You can do all that shit you think is more of the racing than 100% and without people to move your sails around you might as well have done absolutely none of it.  I have to wonder how correct hoists and douses at the marks are less important than "working out the bias on the line."

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Whilst yelling should be avoided, there are times when it's pretty useful. Yesterday wifey was idling out of our workshop with a poorly loaded trailer (that was me) and at the bottom of the driveway hill a length of timber (lumber) was about to smash the back window. I saw it as it just touched the glass and yelled (I know right) STOP. Wifey slammed on the brakes by instinct and we fixed the situation. After seeing this thread I asked her if yelling at her was the correct thing to do and she said absolutely yes, any thing else would have resulted in a smashed rear window. 

I weirdly only yell when I go frd of the mast, so I try to avoid it.

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the more you put into training your crew and practicing, the less need to blast instructions. A quiet boat is a fast boat as they say and Ive been on board with a few sceamers, I hate it and wont sail with them. I've had my turn at yelling when I get frustrated with fuck ups and never feel good about. Yes there is definitely a time and place for yelling but if you do it all the time then youre just an asshole.

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On 8/11/2017 at 4:25 PM, Adrian Bishop said:

...    ...   ...  Bye – Bye and I’m off sailing.

 

Oh good.

Do come back and tell us what it's like

FB- Doug

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On ‎8‎/‎6‎/‎2017 at 10:13 PM, mustang__1 said:

 

It all depends on how the instructions are given. Micro managing means no one thinks on their own. Yelling exacerbates the problem. We've all sailed with yellers, and we all carry a certain hatred for it (some of it self loathing if we realize we used to be one). It's far better to run a maneuver and debrief it if something didnt go well - than to yell in the middle of it trying to manage the situation. If these situations are dangerous to crew or boat - then some serious practice is needed outside of the racing environment... which again falls to the skipper to organize/. Some crew don't want to learn - they just want to go out and sail... not all boats are the right fit for them. The rest need a good leader to cultivate an environment where everyone wants to get better, can get better, and therefore will get better. You can't become a better sailor (or whatever) with someone micromanaging and nonstop fucking chattering. 

The worst thing is when you have a group that want to work hard, learn, and be competitive or win, then you have that one which is out for a daysail and interrupts every thing that is going-on by not paying attention. I do not know how many times it can be asked which way we are rounding the mark and which side the spinnaker is going-up on then still not have a clue when we get to the mark rounding. But, the same person is the one whose voice you can hear talking and laughing above everybody else, when the rest of us are trying to pay attention to what is happening. There are all types and the good ones do not need much guidance, then there are others who need a little, and others that are a total hindrance to the rest.

Maddening.

I explain it to the crew this way: imagine you are driving a car and you do not have any control over the throttle or any control over the brakes. You can do some slowing with the rudder but you get my point. This helps many of them to understand that helpless feeling the driver can have at times.

 

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I think we didn't appreciate the grandiosity of his majesty.  Evidently, he's such a sailing god that anyone he allows to be in his presence should be happy to be yelled at for the valuable lessons he is gracious enough to impart.  

 

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I never yell on my boat and I have had some spectacular dumb-ass screw ups occur. I only yell if I think someone is going to get hurt. This I think is important if you are screaming at your crew all the time they will desensitize to it and when the shit really hits the fan they are not going to respond. Plus its not AC and there is no money involved so WTF are you screaming for? 

Finally creating a "yelling atmosphere"  pisses some folks off and it hard enough to get crew without scaring some away. 

 

 

 

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I raced for 17yrs on a very successful boat on the lakes.  The owner only yelled a few times that I can remember.  When someone got hurt or was about to get hurt, and when something broke.  He built the boat and the fact that we looked forward to 30kts on the nose was a testament to his skill.  First day I was on the boat, it was a pick up crew, halfway up the first leg, those of us on the rail were trying to figure out who was going to work the bow...I made the mistake of saying I would do it if no one else wanted to.  Three of us were back the next year.  And to Adrian, we had a core group that didn't have to say anything let alone yell.  We would tack, jibe, jibe set, etc. without a word being spoken.  Everyone on the boat had worked bow so we all knew what to ease and when.  And on that subject, everyone on the boat could do every job...pretty much at the same level.  That is what you call a crew.  

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On 2017-08-05 at 2:16 PM, dacapo said:

after the fifth time of saying, open the clutch for the  white with green fleck halyard that your left hand is holding..... no not the red line, NOOO not the blue line, oh shit that's the main halyard,and please not the green line or we'll all die, not the tan line......  BUT THE FUCKING WHITE LINE WITH GREEN FLECK  they got the message. ;-)

If a crew member is having difficulty performing simple tasks, 9 times out of 10 it is because they are consumed by anxiety. Yelling and swearing just exacerbate the situation.

On 2017-08-05 at 8:40 PM, jacksparrow said:

If you are teaching someone which way the sheet goes around the winch during a race then you have no business being out on the race course.  Basics like that need to be taught when there is the time to allow them to fuck it up. There is too much pressure during a race to expect someone that new to sailing to get anything out of what you are saying. Take the time to teach on a weekend, or other weeknight. Take a season to properly train enough crew to run the boat, and then race.

This is blindingly obvious, but seems to escape all too many skippers owners. People need to practice walking before they can run.

On 2017-08-06 at 12:39 PM, Ajax said:

Guys, yacht racing is not the U.S. Navy or the Royal Navy.

No matter how good of an instructor the skipper is, no matter how clearly (s)he defines the expectations, people show up with the wrong attitude, and totally jacked up expectations,  and these people need to be culled. I agree that it can be done without yelling, but it still needs to be done.

(1) The USN and RN have totally different ways of doing things, and to imply that they are even roughly similar is a gross libel on the RN;

(2) With the best will in the world, some crew - not many - cannot be trained: generally because they lack aptitude or the desire to learn. But the proper thing to do in that case is to get them off the team, in a private and respectful manner. Bitching about them on this forum solves nothing.

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On 8/6/2017 at 1:04 AM, Ajax said:

 

I agree that the OP sounds gruff but I also agree that there are precious snowflakes out there that don't want to learn and to whom even the most polite request sounds like barking.

They are often known as 'wives'.

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On 8/16/2017 at 11:58 AM, Captain Gigi said:

For those, who have crew that don't listen or hear...

Before any wannabe sailor ever sets foot on my boat, they must convince me they at least know the basics.

5993a0c419ce8_...beforeanywannabesailoreversetsfootonmyboat.CaptainGigi.jpg.3374bf53e8c19b8a99d84e33e332680f.jpg

No doubt there is also some kind of test for misogyny as well...

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The children now love luxury; they have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. Children are now tyrants, not the servants of their households. They no longer rise when elders enter the room. They contradict their parents, chatter before company, gobble up dainties at the table, cross their legs, and tyrannize their teachers.

--- Socrates (469–399 B.C.)

 

Kids these days. Amirite?

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12 hours ago, Svanen said:

If a crew member is having difficulty performing simple tasks, 9 times out of 10 it is because they are consumed by anxiety. Yelling and swearing just exacerbate the situation.

This is blindingly obvious, but seems to escape all too many skippers owners. People need to practice walking before they can run.

(1) The USN and RN have totally different ways of doing things, and to imply that they are even roughly similar is a gross libel on the RN;

(2) With the best will in the world, some crew - not many - cannot be trained: generally because they lack aptitude or the desire to learn. But the proper thing to do in that case is to get them off the team, in a private and respectful manner. Bitching about them on this forum solves nothing.

Aside from your complaint about my comparing the US and Royal navies, I think we are in violent agreement here.

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How is this thread still a thing?  How is this more complicated than:  if you want a person to do a thing with you, you must treat that person in a way that fosters a desire in that person to do that thing with you?

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12 hours ago, Svanen said:

If a crew member is having difficulty performing simple tasks, 9 times out of 10 it is because they are consumed by anxiety. Yelling and swearing just exacerbate the situation.

This is blindingly obvious, but seems to escape all too many skippers owners. People need to practice walking before they can run.

(1) The USN and RN have totally different ways of doing things, and to imply that they are even roughly similar is a gross libel on the RN;

(2) With the best will in the world, some crew - not many - cannot be trained: generally because they lack aptitude or the desire to learn. But the proper thing to do in that case is to get them off the team, in a private and respectful manner. Bitching about them on this forum solves nothing.

That is a truer truth than you realize. I still occasionally have flashbacks/bad dreams about refueling from a Brit tanker.

OTOH saying things "to imply that they are even roughly similar is a gross libel on the RN" is rather inflammatory. The USN has it's flaws but it also has it's gems and finer moments.

-DSK

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1 hour ago, artie_pitt said:

lol

 I think we are in violent agreement here.

 

New boat name...  :)

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I don't want to hijack the thread, but since the point has been raised I will briefly elaborate.

In the White Ensign navies (RN, RAN, RCN, RNZN), seaman officers are specialists who undergo lengthy, standardized training in navigation, the collision regulations, meteorology and similar subjects before earning their OOW certificates. Thereafter they spend most of their careers at sea, with regular refresher training. In the USN, surface and submarine warfare officers are non-specialists schooled primarily through on-the-job training. Throughout their careers, they rotate through various jobs aboard ship (including engineering positions) as well as various shoreside staff billets and irrelevant academic study at service postgraduate institutions and civilian universities.

The above distinction was summarized by LCDR (as he then was) Steve Mack USN in his report on the RN's Perisher course:

Quote

There are no Quartermasters on British submarines. The officers man the navigation plot when the ship is submerged, and all charts are prepared and navigated on by an officer. I found that it was a big step to go from supervising a navigation team underway to actually doing the plotting. My plotting skills were much less than I needed for the demanding situations I would soon find myself in, so I began a crash course in the mechanics of plotting and working the charts. It has been observed that in the US Navy officers 'manage' the navigation, and in the Royal Navy the officers 'do' it. Another area in which I observed a basic difference between the two navies is in their approach to engineering. They have Marine Engineering Officers, Weapons Engineering Officers, and Seaman Officers. The Seaman Officers are warfare specialists focused mainly on warfare, navigation, and ship-driving. No college degree is required to become a Seaman Officer, but they are masters in the art of submarine warfare. In fact, the other students on the course with me had no formal college degrees.

For much more detail, see A Rude Awakening by LT (as he then was) Mitchell McGuffie USN. Synthesis follows.

Quote

We remain a surface Navy that uses computer-based training and a two-week navigation course to prepare our officers to operate and fight the most expensive and technologically advanced ships afloat. While the standard of training for our surface warfare officers has been steadily declining over the past half decade, the Royal Navy has molded its officer training program into a world-class system, one that with some imitation can help transform our surface Navy into an even more capable and professional fighting force. 

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming ...

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You are the one who raised the point.  My original statement said that yacht racing isn't the US or Royal Navy. It was in no way, a comparison of the two navies.

If you choose to believe that Royal Navy methods are superior, I won't attempt to disabuse you, but don't make this out that someone sullied your national honor.  You've gone looking for an argument where none existed.

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3 hours ago, Svanen said:

No worries; I'm neither offended nor looking for an argument.

But we paid for a $10 argument.

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When did they cancel “Shit Show Wednesday”? 

I miss the good old days where you fight it out until the end. 

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The Royal Navy was really good in the 18th century during the early industrial revolution. A recent study showed the speed difference a copper bottom makes. See https://voxeu.org/article/speed-under-sail-during-early-industrial-revolution for the data.

kellyfig1_0.png

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22 hours ago, Ajax said:

You are the one who raised the point.  My original statement said that yacht racing isn't the US or Royal Navy. It was in no way, a comparison of the two navies.

If you choose to believe that Royal Navy methods are superior, I won't attempt to disabuse you, but don't make this out that someone sullied your national honor.  You've gone looking for an argument where none existed.

I think the only way to settle this is to have a naval war. One-design of course, that's the only real test of skill

FB- Doug (ex-BT1(SW) USN), sailor of tin cans, Lasers, and lots of stuff in between

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You are correct. Does this mean the Royal Navy is identical to the East India company?

Another graphic from the paper.

kellyfig2_0.png

What explains these substantial improvements in British ships? The jump in the 1780s is due to the copper plating of hulls which stopped fouling with weed and barnacles, and over the entire period there were continuous improvements in sails and rigging. A big contribution after 1790 came from the increasing use of iron joints and bolts instead of wooden ones (as well as replacing traditional stepped decks with flat ones fitted with watertight hatches) which made for structurally sounder ships that could safely set more sail, especially in stronger winds.

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On 1/31/2018 at 10:34 AM, sshow bob said:

How is this thread still a thing?  How is this more complicated than:  if you want a person to do a thing with you, you must treat that person in a way that fosters a desire in that person to do that thing with you?

we still talking about sailing?

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1 hour ago, ryley said:
On 1/31/2018 at 10:34 AM, sshow bob said:

How is this thread still a thing?  How is this more complicated than:  if you want a person to do a thing with you, you must treat that person in a way that fosters a desire in that person to do that thing with you?

we still talking about sailing?

Wase wondreng samthinge.......                  :)

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On 8/11/2017 at 4:24 PM, Adrian Bishop said:

Remember -  if your just sitting at the back quietly and letting the crew do everything whilst paying for it all - they are probably just laughing at the "know nothing" skipper.  If they say "Tack now skipper" it might be a clue.

I can't believe I read this whole thing, but it sounds to me as though our British friend's problem is that he is so worried about being thought of as a know-nothing skipper that he chooses to sail with less than competent people and doesn't  even try to teach them to master their jobs. By not adequately training and preparing his crew, he has made his knowledge and superiority paramount to the success of the boat even leaving the dock, let alone sailing and winning. He is irreplaceable and invaluable in his mind. 

I personally like sailing with a crew that could race the boat effectively even if I wasn't there. And if that means spending the time and effort to teach and instruct people so they become comfortable and competent, than that is what happens. On the occasions that I have the opportunity to sail with people more talented and knowledgeable than me, I find it a great learning experience. 

 

"Not a team sport" - well on a successful crewed boat everybody is putting in max effort for whatever their job is, and the success of the boat would be due to that. Sure the owners checkbook is important, but its important in baseball, football, whatever. The owner is paying lots of money for his "team" but they are the ones getting the result.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 4 February 2018 at 3:34 AM, Captain Jack Sparrow said:

 

I personally like sailing with a crew that could race the boat effectively even if I wasn't there. And if that means spending the time and effort to teach and instruct people so they become comfortable and competent, than that is what happens. On the occasions that I have the opportunity to sail with people more talented and knowledgeable than me, I find it a great learning experience. 

Is that your ego in your pocket or are you just pleased to see yourself?

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FWIW on our boat we sail with 6 /7 racing.. I've always had two rules. One is everyone must have fun ! And the most fun is being competitive, which we are. Second is sail with people whose company you enjoy and they enjoy sailing with me. No rockstars here. One or two races sorts that out. I have a list of about 10 crew ,some with greater experience than others. Sometimes in adverse conditions I have to raise my voice and occasionally yell. But I consciously direct it at the unfolding event not the person. Mostly we have no crisis, due to no crew turnover . Also I've kept most people focused on the same job. I do tactics with input. I keep crew out of the occasional protest. I'm liberal with praise and take the fall for crap decisions. PC is non existent and we always have a quiet little drink after no matter what the weather. I think the main message is that you all have to get on and accept that there can only be one skipper.

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