With day-to-day pressures of work, family and life, planning your sailing schedule can be tough.
Here are a few tips to help your get organised so you can make the most out of your sailing time, and ensure you don’t have any unexpected conflicts that get in the way of racing.
Plan your schedule
When planning your sailing schedule, a good place to start is by scheduling in all of the races you’d like to attend.
If you own or manage a yacht, you can do this online through the MySail scheduling features, or you can create a spreadsheet or other document with a list of all events. If using MySail, you can also invite your crew and keep track of who plans to attend in one convenient place.
Once you have a list of all events in one place, you can easily see where there are conflicts between different races, regattas, point scores or yacht delivery requirements. Also think about any family, life or work commitments that will prevent you from sailing, and consider these in your planning.
Like most things in life, planning your sailing schedule comes down to determining your priorities.
This is especially true if you want to race in multiple series or events, or on multiple yachts.
To help you prioritise, think about which teams or events are most important to you. These could be the more competitive races, the crew you’ve sailed with the longest, a bucket list race or regatta, or a complete point score.
If you’re sailing on multiple yachts with conflicting schedules, you’ll need to work out which ones you’re going to commit to. It’s best to do this as early as possible and be up-front with the skipper or crew manager so they can cover your position for any races you’re not going to attend.
If your yacht is entered into multiple point scores with conflicting race schedules, check with the race organiser to see if they have any recourse for missing a point score event due to the conflict. In certain cases, you may be able to get average points for these races, or they may become your drop in the case of a regatta or point score.
Try something new
Whether you’re creating your personal crew schedule or your yacht schedule, why not look for some races or regattas that you’ve never done before.
If you live in a region with multiple yacht clubs, there will likely be lots of different event options. Participating in something new is not only a lot of fun, but can also be a great learning experience, by pitting your yacht and crew against new competitors in new courses.
Check out the Events page on MySail to find a list some of the races and regattas happening across Australia and New Zealand, or contact your local yacht clubs to get a copy of their race schedule.
Sailing is a great way to get a little R&R and meet some great new people while travelling.
If you’re looking for a crew spot, keep an open mind. It can be difficult to find a crew position somewhere new; remember that you will be turning up sight unseen and the skipper will likely want to learn a bit about you before agreeing to take you on-board. If you’re not able to secure something before you arrive at your destination, you can still head down to the docks to look for a last-minute spot, or get involved in the après sailing activities.
Other options to participate in sailing events outside of your hometown include: taking your own yacht (if you’re a yacht owner), chartering a local yacht with a group of friends and entering the race as a team or paying for a crew position through a commercial provider.
Looking for something different this year? Check out some of these fantastic upcoming races and regattas from around Australia and New Zealand:
- NZMYC PIC Coastal Classic, Auckland NZ, October 19, 2018
- SoPYC 50th Geraldton Ocean Classic, Perth WA, October 20, 2018
- RYCV Lipton Cup Regatta, Williamstown VIC, November 17 – 18, 2018
- Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, Sydney NSW, December 26, 2018
- ORCV Melbourne to Hobart Westcoaster Yacht Race, Melbourne VIC, December 27, 2018
- RMYC Pantaenius Newport to Coffs Coast Race, Pittwater NSW, December 27, 2018
- RPAYC Club Marine Pittwater to Paradise Regatta, Pittwater NSW, January 2, 2019
- Bay of Islands Sailing Week, Bay of Islands NZ, January 22 – 25, 2019
- RGYC Festival of Sails, Geelong VIC, January 26 – 28, 2019
5. Get organised, stay organised
By planning early and getting your crew locked in early (if you’re a yacht owner or crew manager), you can save a lot of management hassles down the line.
There are lots of tools available to help with this.
MySail’s crew management features provide a simple place to schedule events and share these with your crew. You can also view crew availability, assign race positions, access crew details for registration and safety purposes and easily message one or all of your crew.
If you sail on multiple yachts, through MySail you can easily track your whole race schedule in one place.
Google sheets also provides an online place where you can create a schedule and share this with your crew, WhatsApp lets you build groups to easily message everyone on the team in a central place, and facebook groups provide a way to share stories, photos and news with your team.
All of the tools mentioned above are available for free.