USAWS "new requirement" to have boat path monitored by independent qualified person

JackQJackQ Posts: 481 Open or Level 9 Skier
I am posting this for judges, skier and Jeff Surdej's comments and clarifications.

Before I attended a Record Tournament this weekend, I was given a copy of the AWSA email below that was send to Technical Controllers. I discussed this with most of the 15 Senior Judges in attendance at the tournament, to be better prepared for an upcoming record tournament. Where I am Chief Judge. I may be misinformed or jumping to conclusions but… I have four major concerns:

1. This was only sent to TC, none of the judges I talked to received the email nor we they aware of the requirement for an additional monitoring of end course video.

2. There is not documentation or any discussion of this ‘requirement” on the IWSF rule book or on their web site, nor is in the Jan 2020 AWSA rule book, summary of changes, or on the rule committee web page. Given the situation above, the email is just a concept for a future rule change an has no official standing. I.E. Major process foul

3. I and others who discussed this believe this is a knee jerk reaction to an incident or incident(s) at a R tournament last fall. If so this is not the proper action, the occurrence of the incident should be made public (not hidden) , including suspension of any who purposely cheated, and at a minimum a warning for those “ who should have known or taken action”

4. I do not think adding additional requirements, cost and complications to holding record tournaments should be levied on the enter country in reaction to the action of a few.

Message from AWSA TC Committee Chair

I hope everyone is doing well! It sounds like we are ready to start back to skiing tournaments. Just a reminder to all TCs, we must think of the State Rules for Covid 19. We have the technology to use for maintaining social distancing, we just need to apply it. The Homologation Report has all the check list requirements that we use for normal setup, so you may have to take some extra precaution and setup equipment to meet the State Rules/AWSA guidelines.

Please make sure you read AWSA Social Distance Guidelines:

I realize that this is lengthy, but please read ALL of it. I just want to point out a few reminders (errors/issues found last year) and new rules that we all need to follow. There will be amendments/new AWSA Rule book coming out.

DVRs: Ensure that the Capture rate is 30fps, minimum resolution 640x480 for Boat Video/Gate and EC. Make sure that the Time Stamp is correct, and that the scoring program time is correct.

Monitor Gates/Boat Video/EC: Ensure you have monitor(s) large enough to review (32" monitor should be used). Separate monitors for judges, if required, to ensure we maintain social distancing per the state rules for Covid 19.

End Course Camera: Ensure the camera is level and that the far gates can be viewed with boat pylon in clear view when entering the course (with camera too low, you cannot plot the pylon on far gate). Note that the EC camera position is part of the survey, along with the gate cameras. The far gate width should be a minimum of 1 /3 to 1/4 of the screen. The rule states minimum 1/6 but this is really narrow and hard to verify.

EC Monitor: Ensure that the EC is on a different monitor (not on same monitor as Gate/Boat video if using 4 channel DVR). Ensure that the CJ/CD always has an independent qualified person watching the EC . If not using a program like Splash EyeDrive, install a small line/string down the monitor so that it can be easily detected if the boat deviates more than 20cm (using the split windshield). Soon, it is going to be mandatory to use an Approved Boat Path Measurement System (Corson/Splasheye/GPS) for all class E/L/R tournaments.
Make sure you read IWWF Rule 8.15.

EC Upload: It is required that the EC video/Boat Path Measurement System Data for 38 off and shorter passes be uploaded to the drop-box. It is the Chief Judge's responsibility, but as TCs we normal take care of all the technical requirements. IWWF states immediately which means as soon as possible. Based on IWWF/PanAm current actions, AWSA Chairs are requesting a new AWSA Rule that requires the EC Video/Data (etc: SurePass) to be uploaded within a specific time, or the scores will not be posted until upload. IF not uploaded, the EVP to resolve/follow through. In 2019 the Southern Regionals only had 30% of tournament EC uploaded, where Western Region was 100%.

If TC/Chief Judge is having an issue with uploading, then send the memo card/flash drive to Bob Harris. He has agreed to upload all regions (excluding Western Region). For Western Regional if you cannot get uploaded, then send the memo card/flash drive to Will Bush. But please don't overload Bob and Will.

The Western Region has been uploading the entire tournament. Others have been selecting divisions/rounds (example OM/OW/MM/etc.). The bottom line is we need to upload per the rules and it must be maintained for one year by the organizer, if uploading all 38 off and shorter (entire tournament), it is being maintained for one year in the drop-box.

In addition to the EC Video/Data, the Slalom Detail Data excel file from the scoring program must uploaded. This provides the drivers/skiers/judge by timestamp. If the scorer did not score it live, you need a copy of the scorers' handwritten sheet with the time stamp/drivers/judges name and skier in the order as skied.

Video Files: Need to be saved as AVI/MPG/MOV, etc. If from DVR, need to convert to viewable file type before uploading.

Name: Name the file by sanction # and add short name afterwards (tournament name): 20SXXXR NAME. You can include the time stamp if more than one file (most DVR auto divides in segments).

Rope: Ensure everyone understands which ropes can be used in the applicable division - new addendum will be issued on which ropes can be used for each division to match IWWF and manufacture recommendations. Please read both, IWWF/AWSA Rule when issued to understand which division can use which rope (IWWF allows U14 and lower to use the mid-grade rope, called lighter line. W6 and older CANNOT use in Class L/R).

Monitor: Consider using different judges monitors. Spread out to ensure we maintain social distancing per the state rules for Covid 19. Remember that Chip Shand also has a Trick Program that can be used in addition to SplashEye or Corson.

Boat Camera: See last page from Donal (Splasheye). He is working on a system with auto tracking. I have actually used a Go Pro mounted on the windshield and it captured all the tricks and we were able to judge trick from the SD Card. Downside, it's too hard to change chip out for each skier. You must capture several skiers, then judge. You may want to test, so you do not have to have a camera person in the boat, avoiding Covid-19 issues.

Computers/Program: Recommend that we use Splasheye/Corson/Chip Shand new jump program. Recommend that we use two computer setups (separate grid or have one as backup). The monitor must be large enough that you can clearly identify the grid and jump. A laptop (15") with two grids setup/split screen is not acceptable.

The survey program must have the X/Y coordinates that are used in the jump program.

Jump Surface: Ensure that the jump surface is flat per the rules, set at the correct ratio, and it is documented in the TC Report. This must be checked prior to the tournament.

Survey Program/Homologation Report: We are requesting all TCs to use Emmanuel Lion's Homologation and survey programs. Download Emmanuel Lion's Homologation Program; it must be downloaded each year to obtain latest version. Please do NOT USE a copy from a previous tournament and change the name. The program needs to be used as a checklist.

See copy of Donal's email below. Thank you!

Jerry Jackson
AWSA Tech Controllers' Committee Chairman
[email protected]


Hi Guys,

Not sure it's an issue in US but it's a big issue in Europe with the strict social distancing rules. Not allowed to have third person (cameraman) in boat. So I'm ready to test (testing is the problem - 60 mile travel restriction in place at the moment) an affordable box that will mount on the windshield and give a 1280x720 camera that uses the video to auto track the skier.

Video start stop with GPS.

Video available wirelessly or on a stick.

With further testing it will also give 60 frames per second video in slalom with video tracking.

With a custom frame by frame viewer for the shore judges.

I will keep you in the loop as it develops.




  • KelvinKelvin Posts: 1,316 Mega Baller
    Not sure what procedural issues we may have in the US, but Europe did a comprehensive review of end course video last year and downgraded several entire tournaments and specific scores for some skiers.
    Kelvin Kelm, Lakes of Katy, Katy Texas
  • GloersenGloersen Posts: 1,178 Mega Baller
    edited June 2020
    IWWF Release 02 – 29/02/2020

    8.15: End Course VideoEnd-course video shall be recorded for the slalom event for all passes 11.25m and shorter. A rigidly mounted video camera shall be operated from a point on the centreline on at least one end of the slalom course, adjusted to show all of the boat guides in clear focus, and equipped with optical (not digital) magnification of sufficient power to display the far entrance/exit gate occupying at least 1/6th of the full width of the screen (1/3 width or larger is recommended).The video file shall be forwarded to the Confederation Waterski Council for monitoring immediately after the competition. The Council may cancel results that do not conform to rules (1.09) (8.01) and (8.15)

    The Chief Judge will assign an end-course Judge to monitor the end-course video and award re-rides on the following criteria:

    If the boat pylon deviates more than 20cm from the centre of the course at the approximate position where the skier is passing each buoy, an optional re-ride shall be awarded if the path of deviation was a disadvantage to the skier unless the skier makes a complete pass. A mandatory re-ride shall be required if the path of deviation was an advantage to the skier. It shall be considered an advantage if the boat pylon deviates outside the 20cm toward the buoy that the skier is attempting to get around. It shall be considered a disadvantage if the boat pylon deviates outside the 20cm away from the buoy that the skier is attempting to get around. If an Approved Boat Path Measurement System (see below) is being used, the deviation shall be calculated as being the average of the maximum two deviation measurements taken when the pylon of the boat is within a zone from 10 metres before to 10 metres after the buoy the skier is attempting to round. A minimum of ten deviation measurements must be taken within this zone If an Approved Boat Path Measurement System is being used the Net Cumulative Deviation (favourable deviations shall be offset by unfavourable deviations, the sum of which shall be the Net Cumulative Deviation) shall be also measured throughout the course. If the Net Cumulative Deviation through the course exceeds the allowable Cumulative Deviation Tolerances at any buoy as set forth below, then an optional re-ride shall be awarded if the Net Cumulative Deviation was a disadvantage to the skier unless the skier makes a complete pass, and a mandatory re-ride shall be required if the Net Cumulative Deviation was an advantage to the skier. If the skier does not complete the pass the Cumulative Deviation up to and including the buoy the skier was attempting to go around must be measured. Cumulative Deviation TolerancesBuoyDeviation max120228335440545649Approved Boat Path Measurement SystemsCorson SplashEye Note: GPS systems are being developed and it is anticipated that they will be tested and ultimately approved for use under this rule. Except when an Approved Boat Path Measurement System is being used (in which case any required equipment shall be installed in the boat), the position of the centre and maximum deviation lines of the boat shall be indicated (such as by placing visible marks or vertical posts on the windshield showing the 20cm deviation lines) marks shall be placed on the windshield that are visible in the end-course video camera (visible from both directions). The marks shall be placed 20cm from the centre of the windshield on both sides of the centre to aid in the determination of the 20 cm deviation. If the boat path deviation is determined by placing a string or line on the end course video, the end course camera must be exactly in the centre and exactly straight so that the string or line is in the middle of both the entry and exit gates. A re-ride for boat path deviation will be awarded if the end-course Judge and the Chief Judge (or the Chief Judge’s designee) agree on the determination. The skier's score up to the point of the illegal deviation shall be protected assuming all other rules criteria have been met (time). The original score will not be protected if a re-ride is taken or required for boat path deviations (at any buoy or cumulative).
  • klindyklindy Posts: 2,837 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited June 2020
    @JackQ This has also been part of the AWSA rule book for a long time. In the current AWSA rule book in 15.06.D.1.e it says - "The Chief Driver shall be responsible for ensuring the end-course video is monitored by an official for compliance with Rule 10.07 and that any driving adjustments or corrections are communicated to the driver." This language was added in 2017.

    The 2013 rule book and in 15.04.D.1 is says, "...It is further recommended that a monitor be placed in the judges tower, and that this be observed by an official designated by the Chief Judge for compliance with Rule 10.07 during any potential passes involving records." The language has changed in 2017 making the monitoring mandatory, but something compelling someone to monitor the end-course video has been part of the AWSA rules for a long time.

    The email sent to the TC's was meant to be a reminder to do those various items, not to necessarily relay new rules or information. I'd have to reread it again but I don't think anything in there is a new rule except for the language about allowable ropes (I think).

    Keith Lindemulder
    AWSA Chairman of the Board

  • JackQJackQ Posts: 481 Open or Level 9 Skier
    I read the IWSF IWWF Release 02 – 29/02/2020 at least twice and missed the addition of" The Chief Judge will assign an end-course Judge to monitor the end-course video and award re-rides on the following criteria:"

    Thanks for the identification. That is is clearer than the USAWS " independent qualified person" I expect we will get additional clarification in the future.

    I am still concerned about the additional complication, Boat Path Measurement System may be the ultimate solution but the infrastructure and acquisition cost may be significant.
  • GloersenGloersen Posts: 1,178 Mega Baller
    edited June 2020
    @klindy it is NOT particularly clear what the rating requirements for the ECV official is.
    Does a "Regular" judge qualify?
  • klindyklindy Posts: 2,837 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @Gloersen That's a good question that we're working to clarify. Recently the AWSA scoring software has been changed to add a place to enter the name of the official watching the end-course video (just like we add tower judges or boat driver).

    Part of the rationale behind having the Chief Driver responsible for having an "official" monitor the end-course video is because many times another driver may be the best option for identifying and communicating any corrections/adjustments.
    Keith Lindemulder
    AWSA Chairman of the Board

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