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Developing race official qualifications

Developing race official qualifications


Are You Interested in Developing Your Racing Knowledge?

Irish Sailing currently delivers two courses intended to train and qualify sailors who wish to contribute to running our sport by hearing protests and promoting rule observance.

Protest Committee Member

In fleet racing sailors use the rules to keep out of trouble, team and match racers use the rules to create trouble for others. In a protest committee the rules are used to resolve incidents in which one or more boat crew feels aggrieved. This course aims to facilitate sailors in acquiring the skills necessary to be a member of a club protest committee, and, with experience, chair some hearings.

This course, spread over 3 evenings, is designed to enable  participants:

  • to read the rules in a consistent manner;
  • to listen to evidence and ask pertinent questions
  • establish the ‘facts’: an agreed version of the incident based on evidence given and the experience of the protest panel members of both sailing and judging
  • analyse the facts to decide whether any rule has been broken and give an appropriate penalty.

The course concludes by a session on the formalities of a protest hearing.

Participants should have experience of racing. Having read a few pages of the rule book, or having been involved in a protest will prove useful.

Having competed this course and acquired some experience of protest hearings, sailors might then consider qualifying as an Irish Sailing Judge.

Irish Sailing Judges Seminar

This course allows an opportunity for sailors with a reasonable knowledge of the Racing Rules and experience of protest committee hearings to develop their skills with a view to qualifying as an Irish Sailing Regional or National Judge.

The weekend course examines in detail the formalities of protest hearings, taking evidence, decision making and communication decisions.

Participants have the opportunity to sit a Regional Judge multiple choice test designed to evaluate candidate’s knowledge of the rule book. The weekend concludes with an opportunity to sit the National Judges exam, which evaluates candidate’s knowledge of procedure as much as their knowledge of the rules.

This course is run in collaboration with the RYA, meaning that Judges throughout both Ireland and UK are trained and evaluated to the same standard. It also means that Irish candidates can attend courses in the UK if this is more convenient.

Passing the appropriate test is the first step to qualifying as a Regional or National Judge. Successful candidates can then take the opportunity to join the protest committee at events, both to acquire experience and to be assessed.

Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more about Judge and Protest Committee training please contact Sarah Louise Rossiter on sl.rossiter@sailing.ie directly.