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Old 08-28-2012
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Signing up for races

Hi. I signed up for a couple of races as crew via ragattadates.com. I also emailed the race organizers and offered to be a volunteer if I don't get on any boat.

About myself: Just got the basic keelboat this month and have about 16 hours sailing pearson ensign. Never raced before. That is it!

So far I have not heard back from anyone which leads me to few questions. With my modest qualifications, is it likely I will hear back from someone? What's the best way to get into the racing then?

The 2 races I signed up for are:

2012 Valeur-Jensen Stamford Denmark Race on Yacht Scoring - A complete web based regatta administration and yacht scoring program
2012 US-IRC Championship of Long Island Sound and PHRF Fall Classic on Yacht Scoring - A complete web based regatta administration and yacht scoring program
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Old 08-28-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

You might also ask around local YC's, some of them have online sign ups too.

Some places like on port here in puget sound, actually has a circel on one of the docks you can stand in during a given race day evening and possibly get picked up. Of course it helps if you have half a rack with you! but that is another issue!LOLOLOL

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Old 08-29-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

Yeah it's hard to say how much response you will get.

I second the old fashioned way! Go down to the docks, and ask around. Don't expect to get onto one of the sexy race boats right away, although that could happen if they need extra rail meat! You are better off targeting the racer cruisers. Some clubs have a crew circle of some kind you can stand in and people will pick you up, but it doesn't hurt to stroll around the docks too. Look for boats that only have one or two guys rigging up!

Good luck!
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Old 08-29-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

Call the senior fleet captain of the club you're interested in racing at. Be square about your interest and experience. Ask how you'd get a ride at that club. I take newbies quite frequently but I wouldn't for the Denmark Race.
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Old 10-03-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

If you guys are interested then go ahead.
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Old 10-04-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

The races that have websites that offer "signing up" to crew- are big-ticket events. The clubs that run these events pay hefty sums (a good chunk of the entry fee) to the software people who provide the service. The people racing in these events are not looking for pick-up crews. They are looking for people who have done three or four trans-pacs, along with occasional deliveries to the South Pole and/or Spitzbergen. You will probably have better luck contacting a local club's fleet captain or simply posting a card somewhere at a club near you saying that you are a willing learner and will show up when needed for midweek evening or weekend racing. Walking the docks on a race day can also work. In Chicago I got invited on two CHI-Mac races --- after I'd proved myself on a day race. In HyŤres, France, I found a spot on a 470 for the Olympic Classes Regatta there. Luck helps, but being realistic is also a good idea.
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Old 10-15-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

Well the good news is once you've proven yourself, you'll have no shortage of racing opportunities. Skipper/owners are always in need of good crew. So... how to "prove" yourself....
1. join your local sailing club/cruising club & be active. meet people. tell them you are interested in crewing.
2. start small. find casual/fun races to crew on. most sailing areas have these. they are often called Thurs night races or Rum races etc. volunteer for race committee. volunteer for anything.
3. be available, dependable and hard-working. do the jobs nobody else wants.
4. keep improving your skills. rent a single-handed boat & practice sail trim.
5. once you get a crew spot, don't be picky. learn what you can from whatever situation you find yourself in. if the fit is not good, keep looking for another team but always keep improving your skills.
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Old 10-17-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

How to get taken for a ride - Crew Pool Anarchy - Sailing Anarchy Forums
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Old 10-17-2012
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Re: Signing up for races

Great advice above.

The one thing I would add is that as an owner, there is nothing, absolutely nothing that pisses me off faster than someone who commits to be there and then doesn't show up. Unless someone died, or you are in the hospital after you commit to me I just don't want you on the boat, I need you there. Because your spot is critical to the operation of the boat.

Worst example of this, was in the J-22 Midwinters, we were 9th out of 75 boats going into the last day, with a realistic shot of finishing in the top 5 if we had a good last day. Now this is a major regatta, boats out with professional crews, and huge money spent to prep boats. But on the last day two of my crew didn't show. Aparently they decided it was too rough to go sailing so they bailed. As the rest of the fleet left for the race course we sat at the dock, watchingr our chance of a good finish evaporate.

That was 7 years ago. To this day I won't even consider allowing those two on my boat, or any boat I am managing, because I won't risk a regatta finish on them. I can also tell you that the two in question were at the time hot shot sailors gaining a reputation in the national circuit, and now neither of them even got invited to sail the last North Americans that was in their hometown. Because of this one incident.
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