Did you attend the RYA virtual Race Officials Conference last Thursday? I listened in over my race officer partner’s shoulder and very informative it was too.
Paul Jackson’s (West Mersea YC, UKLA) piece was particularly interesting. It was billed as Electronic Official Notice Boards and Paul also covered his experience with software and systems for event management.
Gratifyingly, Paul’s list of requirements described almost exactly what our SailEvent service provides!
So this seems like an opportune moment to recap on where we are with SailEvent. This is how it looks today –
One definitive, accessible entry list in the cloud. That’s been there from the start but it is worth restating because it is the foundation of all that follows.
Online entries. Out of the box SailEvent comes with two forms – club and open – both of which accept secure online payments via Stripe straight into club accounts. But we know there is no single form that fits every event so SailEvent integrates with the many form builder services on the web. If that’s Google Forms or Jotform then entries automagically go straight onto the SailEvent entry list with no file exporting/importing. Jotform accepts online payment btw.
Virtual notice boards. Customisable and can be installed as a phone app. Features include a table of documents and links, quick access to entry forms, entry lists and results, and notices to competitors. Notices are promulgated not just by email but also by text and phone notifications – competitors like the immediacy.
Electronic tallying straight to the cloud so no more sheets of paper or rubber bands.
Competitor location monitoring either via dedicated GPS trackers or a simple phone app.
Race officer/safety officer app so they know who to expect on the start line, where they are now, and when they are safely ashore.
For results processing SailEvent seamlessly shares entry lists with HalSail and also tells HalSail who to expect on the finish line to optimise finish recording. Downloads are available for apps such as Sailwave, DRCS and presumably, though we haven’t tried it yet, racingrulesofsailing.org.
With SailEvent and optimum integrations, this is how we see the competitor experience –
- Enter and pay online
- Pinged on their phone if there is a notice to competitors
- Before racing tally afloat by phone
- After racing tally ashore by phone
- Fast results service on the web
For event administration –
- Monitor entries and fees as they come in
- Extract and process all that ‘non-sailing’ stuff – meal tickets, merchandise, etc
- Automatic results publication
For race officials -
- Keep competitors informed via the notice board
- Keep track of competitors on race days
- Record finishing positions straight to the cloud
- Account for competitors after sailing
It was clear from the conference that the application of IT to sailing events is a big, interesting and exciting topic whose time has come. And it’s also apparent that SailEvent ticks very many boxes. How about giving it a go - first for club racing, learn and understand, then move on to bigger things. It’s free to try and if you need a hand we are only an email away.
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