What's wrong with competitive skiing?



  • BRYBRY Posts: 593 Crazy Baller
    @OB You say "We all know how to judge. Most of us can drive a semi straight line and we all know first aid" and "wouldn't it be much easier to write in scores on a clipboard from the observer seat??? No times needed" and "much easier to run a ranking qualified event".

    But your proposals pretty much castrate a C into an F. Wouldn't it just be better then to drop C's all together and just have F with F then going to the ranking list? Plus to it also is organizers can really have latitude to get creative with format's? It's a thought. I'm not for it but it's a thought with potential merit.

    Well,it's a good thought all but the clipboard with ranking qualified. That means someone has to transcribe every pass afterwards, what a tedious job and who wants to do that? That sure is not easier for the organizer. Perhaps an app for phones where each pass is uploaded into the ranking list real time. Just need skier name, AWSA number, starting speed and total buoy's for each pass. Seems like an very doable app and much easier for the same end result. And anyone/everyone could view results live, like the "Live Tournament Scoring" page now.
  • BRYBRY Posts: 593 Crazy Baller
    edited May 2015
    @shaneH you put this very well and very succinctly: "about the ranking system is that it does force us to have a system like we do for C because if there was bending the rules at a tournament it could effect regional/national qualifications"
    I couldn't agree more. I think that is a very important consideration. Do we want to effect regional/national qualifications, i.e. open them to cheats and gaming the system, and for what gains?
  • MillerTime38MillerTime38 Posts: 396 Crazy Baller
    @OB I agree 100% on calling in boat times. Only call in a boat time if it is not actual. I cannot stand saying "6 with a 95" 100 times while boat judging a group.

    I think the biggest hinderance to growing the sport is economical. I read somewhere that people are working more and making less. That means less time and money to spend extra curricular activities. Hence more people are selling the $50K boats and not paying $2K a year for private water and are picking up the $3000 bike or the $1000 golf clubs.
  • ForrestGumpForrestGump Posts: 6,310
    I can't count the number of times I've been in the boat and the judge says "only tell me a time if the skier falls or if it's off." Otherwise it's a 95. Honestly, how many rerides were given in 2014 due to bad times in slalom vs the number of actual pulled passes. I bet it is statistically non existent as a percentage. Why, then, do we spend so much effort and time to track this in a C tournament. Now, I get it for Jump.
    Shane "Crash" Hill

    [Deleted User]MattPBroussard
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,350 Mega Baller
    Calling in the boat time also helps detect the wrong speed. We had a skier pulled at 36 instead of 34. Calling in the boat time caught it. He was a good enough skier that he ran the pass and just thought he wasn't in the game.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,663 Crazy Baller
    Calling in the time caught it? I would think that calling in would not be required for that to be caught by the boat crew. (.08'vs .95) And calling in doesn't always fix that either. Most judges just call in the last two digits. If a skier was supposed to be pulled at 32 and got 34 instead and the judge called in "93" would the scorer question that? Only a really good one would. Now I agree that an experienced boat judge should catch that too, but the call in isn't a guarantee of a catch.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
    [Deleted User]
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,350 Mega Baller
    The fact that the driver looked to call it in was how he caught it. if it were not part of the regular post-pass reporting, it might have gone unnoticed for another pass or two.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,066 Mega Baller
    I agree with @OB for running C class tournaments. We have talked about running a weeknight tournament at our site which is on public water but we have problems finding enough regulars and a safety official. Plus we don't have towers so we would have to anchor boats (which is doable). If we could have it judged from the boat with a clipboard we could get some additional scores and hopefully add some new tournament skiers.

    I don't see what the problem is with self scoring. Who cares if someone's average is artificially high (we call them vanity handicaps in golf.) When they show up at a bigger event they are only going to hurt themselves and there is no money to be won in skiing. Plus there is still going to be someone in the boat as a judge and other people at the site.

    The swerving driver thing always mystifies me. I know I can help my son out when he is running 38 off on his trick ski going 17 mph but I am not nearly a good enough driver to help someone when I am going 34 or 36 mph. I am just trying to keep the boat in the middle. I am not sure what to do at full speed to help out and prevent causing extra slack.
    Mark Shaffer
  • 94009400 Posts: 646 Crazy Baller
    edited May 2015
    I would suspect the biggest concern (for C tournaments) would/should be slalom course accuracy especially, if it depends on floating arms (that aren't secured/anchored). If the wind or current is parallel to the course direction or there's sag in the arms, the turn balls can be narrow. If there has been an ELR tournament at the site, then at least the course should have been checked. The course would concern me much more than the driving....Now if you combine "creative" driving with a narrow slalom course, then you can really have some inflated scores.

    We had a guy from another part of our state that was showing up for tournaments and according to him, he was running 38 all the time but he showed up at our tournaments and would rarely ever run 35, come to find out his course was significantly narrow.

    I do agree with everyone that the tournaments that are run on the up and up will sort it all out in the end. There are sites that run C tournaments with the highest standards and then there are some that don't. I think most are intentionally run the correct way.

  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,663 Crazy Baller
    We have a floating course and we have it surveyed on occasion. It's within record capability. If I couldn't have our course and ropes at proper measurements I just would not sponsor a tournament. As for driving I just don't think there's much weaving going on, at least none around here. Not to say I don't see incompetent driving, but mostly it seems to hurt skiers not help them. As to the guy who couldn't run within a pass of what he could at his site.....you'd be surprised how many people just buy a rope (maybe a cheap no name one) and never check the length.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,066 Mega Baller
    @9400 I understand your point about people with bad scores but my argument is who are they hurting. They would show up at a tournament and not ski well and if they ever went to Regionals or Nationals they would obviously not perform well. The USGA has a mechanism to prevent people with obvious vanity handicaps from signing up for events for a period of years. It used to be if you signed up for a US Amateur qualifier and didn't shoot with in 10 strokes per round of the leader then the USGA had the option of rejecting your application the following year.

    Now if there was some sort of handicapped event and people were sandbagging that would cause a different issue.
    Mark Shaffer
  • skidawgskidawg Posts: 3,514 Mega Baller
    @richarddoane ....choke factor is big at regional/national events, but a bigger factor (especially in slalom) is not having drivers that are accustom to driving shortline slalom. I have participated in many events over the years and had drivers at big events that never pull 39 off slalom, but are rated 3 evt drivers, so they get the call. Why not put on a class C tourney, rated driver, two judges in the boat, times recorded. 2 judges can certainly count to 6 and cover gates as well as any worries over cheating. That would save 1 less judge and setting up towers.
    NWA....Heaven on earth!
  • boarditupboarditup Posts: 585 Crazy Baller
    How about this: On a previously measured course, a class F with one boat judge and a trained driver can post a score that "counts" toward the rankings and qualification for State and Regionals.

    This gives a lot of flexability to run tournaments with little overhead requirements but keeps the potential inflated scores in check. If the participants can use their experience to qualify for other official qualifications, even better.
    Karl DeLooff - Powered by the wind
    [Deleted User]MISkier9400skidawg
  • klindyklindy Posts: 2,804 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @boarditup Rule 3.06 already includes class F tournament scores as long as they don't exceed level 5 cut off score. It says "a class F (Grassroots) score above zero may be included in the Ranking calculations if it does not exceed the Level 5 cut-off average from the previous Ski Year Rankings. Those class F scored which exceed the level 5 cut-off average may be included but the score will be reduced to equal the level 5 cut-off average".

    Further rule 6.03 F says - "a class F (grassroots) tournament may be limited to an assistant judge, an assistant driver, and a state safety director." To add jumping a regular driver is needed.

    Further (since this is probably largely about slalom) rule 10.08 C.1.f says - "in Class F (grassroots) tournaments, the number of judges shall be at the option of the chief judge. Slalom may be judged by the boat judge alone."

    States and Regions are allowed to set their own performance criteria to be eligible for the State or Regionals tournaments. Likewise, once a score hits the ranking list, except for the deductions taken for fewer than three scores, any score carries equal weight.

    So, in some cases what you're recommending already applies (some State tournament and some Regionals - at a minimum level 4 scores are used for overall calcs and 2nd/3rd event eligibility). Granted a M4 score somewhere into 38off isn't going to post from a class F tournament but the cut off score last year was 78.75 which is almost [email protected]

    Since the rules are in place to do what you suggest, perhaps what needs to happen is an adjustment of what qualifies in the ranking list or not. Suffering adding the "previously verified course" or simply moving the cut-off score to include levels 5,6 and perhaps level 7 may achieve what your suggesting. Either way 90+% of what your suggest exists today.
    Keith Lindemulder
    AWSA Chairman of the Board

  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,801 Mega Baller
    @skidawg - that scenario of a driver's lack of shortline experience should be handled by the Chief Driver scheduling the appropriate butt for the seat during your group, just because you have the rating, doesn't mean your the best man for the job
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • ForrestGumpForrestGump Posts: 6,310
    Yep, that's even been seen at Regionals!
    Shane "Crash" Hill

  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,663 Crazy Baller
    edited May 2015
    Just because a driver gets appointed to Regionals for example, sure doesn't mean he/she is qualified. It's kind of a popularity contest or merely name recognition. The rules being such as they are (must be a regular or senior in all three events) eliminates some very good slalom drivers. It shouldn't be that way, seeing as how the number of slalom pulls is far greater than the other two events. I lobbied (feeling that I'm good enough) for a change or exception based on the rule (select from the best qualified) to no avail. The most common objections heard was "we need to be able to shift drivers here and there on short notice and we can't do that if not three event qualified". They also mentioned needing an extra driver if one is only slalom qualified. Holds no water, again due to number of slalom pulls compared to others.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
  • ToddLToddL Posts: 2,894 Mega Baller
    edited May 2015
    I like the F sanction idea, where scores count towards rankings. I was not aware of that, and I suspect I am not alone in that regard. However, why cap it at level 5? That really limits who can participate in some areas. It would be great if all skiers at "never run" 35 off and below could participate. Given the way that ranking lists works, the level cut offs vary greatly by division in terms of line lengths. Maybe simply raising it to level 6 could allow for more participation. You need it sufficiently high to allow for experienced individuals to participate as judge or driver. Plus, you'd want about 80% of your local skiing population to be able to compete.

    Plus, the LOC could have additional elements like mulligans (not scored for AWSA, but for on site awards) which adds to the fun, or organize the starting order by ability levels with local ability dividions and awards. Hmmm, a truky fun tournament with minimal officiating, which works for both novices and lower ranked C skiers, and where scores still count towards ranking... Sounds like like a great plan!
    -- The future of skiing depends upon welcoming novice skiers regardless of age to our sport.
  • LeonLLeonL Posts: 2,663 Crazy Baller
    Im already cut out so WTF.
    Leon Leonard Stillwater Lake KY - SR Driver SR Judge
  • ForrestGumpForrestGump Posts: 6,310
    The places where I get cut out don't matter to me, to be quite truthful. I can go to plenty of R tournaments and drive if I so choose.
    Shane "Crash" Hill

  • thompjsthompjs Posts: 541 Solid Baller
    @ShaneH I didn't know you could drive!

  • ForrestGumpForrestGump Posts: 6,310
    I guess that depends on if you ask someone I just pulled into 41 off or someone that just fell at 28 off. The answer could vary, Jim! lol
    Shane "Crash" Hill

  • thompjsthompjs Posts: 541 Solid Baller
    I have the same success rate
  • The_MSThe_MS Posts: 6,652 Member of the BallOfSpray Hall Of Fame
    @ShaneH can pull me any time.
    Shut up and ski
  • gt2003gt2003 Posts: 726 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Had to revive the thread as I was searching for slalom lakes to ski in Oklahoma and found this on wakescout. Under "club requirements for participation", here is what it says (copied and pasted) Club requirements for participation: Tournament level skiers only, please. Damn, I wonder why participation levels may be declining. Is this attitude rampant? In the clubs defense, it did say at the top that the club "hosts waterkiing and slalom events for enthusiasts of any skill level.". However, being a total newbie, I was immediately turned off by the "club requirements for participaition". It surely wasn't a welcoming tone.
    2014 HO TX
    1996 Malibu Echelon
  • bkreisbkreis Posts: 323 Baller
    @gt2003 in MIami, the majority of club members are not tournament skiers, just people who LOVE to ski, tube, wakeboard/skate, barefoot, etc.. I guess it depends on what the club stands for. In Miami, it's the love of the sport!
  • skihardskihard Posts: 565 Crazy Baller
    @ShaneH you go hard you window licker! I'd gladly hang on to the handle behind any boat you were steering!
    I spend lots of time looking at the back of Jim's head already! :)

    Cheaters exist everywhere in every sport or in anything where there is challenge and competition. You can sandbag all you want but eventually you get what's coming to you which is usually a good kick in the nuts and karma usually does it to you with the people you are trying to cheat against looking at you in your state of shame.

    If we compared our sport to golf and based our handicaps on runs, both practice and tourny's, it would give a person a true representation of how good they really are or rather the level they are at?

    Sure I can have be a 10 handicap golfer and plug scratch scores into the computer to make me look like a better golfer. But when going to tournaments and getting flighted with scratch golfers ..........................I will look like a complete idiot! KARMA!!!

    It's like me skiing against you Shane head to head..............I don;t stand a chance based on ability yet we are close in age.

    I love skiing and I'm the weakest skier in our community yet I ski all the time with everyone and love it. Bad days on the water mixed with good ones and keep hacking away at trying to improve.
    That said I won't drive an hour or two or more to attend a tournament because I can't compete with the system set up the way it is. The INT isn't a common circuit or loop (even the web site is out of date).

    If they want growth changes are necessary as they are in every sport.
    Life's about working hard and then having fun on the water!
    I am - are you?
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