What is School Team Racing?
by Peter MacGregor
School Team Sailing in North Queensland
In its simplest form, a secondary school needs a team of six students. Ideally there would be at least three who can skipper a small sailing boat and three who can participate as forward hands. With this basic team, 6 PFDs and 6 helmets, it would be possible to turn up and participate in the inter-school sailing competition.
Boats are supplied by the host club/school.
If the school has less than 3 skippers, then they need to contact their local sailing club and have their team complete a ‘Start Sailing 2’ course (Minimum).
Alternately they could look to combine with another school or schools to come up with a team.
The team will need a coach or mentor. This person needs to have a knowledge of the sailing basics. Ideally a sound knowledge of racing, the rules of sailing and even “teams sailing” would be of benefit.
Teams Racing Basics
Two teams of 3 boats compete over a very short “S” shaped course. Races are often completed in less than 10 minutes. The objective is to score less points than the opposition. First over the finishing line scores 1 point. Second scores 2 points and so on until sixth over the finish line (or last) scores 6 points. There are 21 points to be shared. So, a team with 10 points or less wins the race.
Teams use the sailing rules to control the opposition and improve their team’s position.
They compete in a series of races across the course of the day.
A regatta usually involves a round-robin or a knock-out competition. Wins and losses are tallied to find the overall winner.