Saturday, October 23, 2021
Text Size

What's happening with National Championships?

AusMapCOVID7 August 2021

Radio Sailing is in the middle of adapting to this new COVID-19 world.  When the global pandemic started, the ARYA understandably decided that if there was a border closed anywhere in Australia that Ranking events should be suspended because it was not available to all.  Fair enough everyone said.  But then as the viral outbreak morphed from an incident to an ongoing emergency with borders opening and closing repeatedly, the stance had to change, if Championship Radio Sailing was to continue.  So Ranking competition was opened again with a business as usual stance ignoring the odd border closure.  That meant that if one State could not make it, too bad, the show must go on.

Fast forward to 2021, a year later, where after National Championships are scheduled, calendars set, borders are closing regularly and it's not just one State, but up to three at the same time.  Recently the Western Australian Association that was scheduled to host the 10R, M and A Class Nationals asked for direction from the ARYA given that at the time, only WA and TAS sailors could travel to Perth.  The decision was to not hold those events in Perth in 2021.  Some classes were struggling to get more than the minimum number of six starters.  Then there is the consideration of just what the Championship is worth if only one and a half States can get there. 

Following that decision the ARYA is in contact with the other States slated to host National Championships this year for their views and or plans. 

  • Queensland postponed the RC Laser Nationals in 2020 and rumour has it that they could do the same this year, for the same reasons.  Who would have thought that could happen twice in a row. 
  • Tasmania is programmed to run the DF Championships and is yet to say anything about changing that but you can bet they are watching what is going on in the 'north island' very closely. 
  • South Australia has a full entry list for the IOMs due to run in November.  This seems far enough away to not require a decision right now, anything could happen, borders could all open up ... or close.

Risk itself is now the issue with travelling to events rather than just the virus itself.  What the border restrictions are right now is not really the issue, it's the risk that things will change overnight as we have seen them do.  No one wants to either get stuck in another State, or have to spend two weeks at home after they get back.  Then there is the risk of getting sick or bring something back, but of course that could never happen to you right?

But let's put this in perspective.  A minority of affiliated Radio Sailors enter Ranking Events.  Of those, only a minority will ever want to use their ranking to qualify for International events, which is the primary reason it is there.  Where are the World Championships going to be hosted anyway? 

For those of you reading this, ninety percent of you really only care about being able to go sailing at your club.  Fortunately, in all but the strictest lock-downs you can still do that if you follow the guidelines in your locality.  Except for this week of course, there is that.  For Queensland, even if all the other States cannot get here, State and Regional Championships can still be run and won without the need to be an approved ARYA Ranking Event.  So let's all do what we can to make sure that at least our State can go sailing.

Looks like the QRYA decision not to put its hand up for other 2021 National Championships or host the Eddie Cowell, was a good one.

Happy sailing

The Editor

Login Form