Volunteers and the importance of ADOs

Everything that Croydon Sailing Club (CSC) does is only possible thanks to the generosity of members kind enough to give up their time to make it happen: whether it’s Sunday racing, Wednesday practice, responding to enquiries or running training courses, it’s only possible thanks to unpaid volunteers.

It’s also thanks to these volunteers that we’re able to keep the cost of membership so low.

That’s why, as Sailing Secretary, I thought I’d spend a few moments talking about the importance of assistant duty officers or ADOs and why you should feel good about giving up 2-4 Sunday mornings a year to help run race sessions.

Why do you need a DO and an ADO?

Without duty officers there would be no sailing.

At a basic level, two heads are better than one when it comes to preparing the jetty, setting the course and keeping track of the race, and it’s definitely easier to write down finish times when you have someone else to ring the bell and let you know when dinghies cross the line.

But more importantly, if someone gets into difficulty it’s always good to know that there’s an ADO on hand to make sure they’re OK and take the appropriate action while the DO keeps an eye on the rest of the fleet. Without an ADO, the race would have to be abandoned.

But I only come down on Wednesdays, why should I help on a Sunday?

The volunteers that give up their time to make Wednesday evenings possible are the same members that come down on a Sunday morning to race.

So, think of being an ADO as a way to say thank you to all of those other members who open up the boat park, help you get rigged, man the safety boat, maintain the club dinghies you sail and all the other things so many of us take for granted.

What happens if I can’t make it?

Don’t panic! Always let us know, and wherever possible use the race calendar and contact list you received at the start of the season to arrange a swap.

Full house, comfy chair

With beautiful sunshine and an unexpectedly good wind, last Sunday saw a whopping 12 members taking part in both the first and second race of the day, with several others coming down to practice afterwards!

And as if that wasn’t exciting enough (for the DO and ADO at least), the duty officers were able to set themselves up with an alfresco style race office on the mid-lake fishing pontoon to take in the action in almost-on-the-water luxury (by CSC standards anyway).

All in all, a great day’s racing. Hope to see you all again next week!

Full house!

Full house!

Charity Pursuit

It was fantastic to see such a great turnout for our annual Charity Pursuit today.

Despite limited wind (force 1-2) at the beginning, first time racers Maria and Declan (club Picos) made excellent starts, putting themselves nearly a lap ahead by the time the Comets joined the race several minutes later, and managed to maintain their lead for several laps before finally being caught and overtaken by a breakaway group.

Tony (Byte CII) and Neil (Laser) joined a little later, but despite their valiant effort, just couldn’t close the gap on Geoff (Comet) and Phil (Comet), who were in a battle all of their own for first place.

Barely separated by more than a boat length the entire race, the dual between Geoff and Phil ran from start to finish with the lead changing hands again and again, but the defining moment came just a lap from the end when Geoff made what looked like an inspired manoeuvre to sneak past Phil on the inside at Island… only to hit the buoy! Phil took full advantage of Geoff’s 360 to win the race.

Congratulations Phil!

Have you made your donation?

This year’s charity is RNLI, who rely on donations to keep up their amazing work saving lives every day. So if you weren’t able to give your £5 donation to Phil (treasurer) today, don’t forget to give bring it with you next week, transfer it to the club’s bank account or click here to pay it now using PayPal (or a credit/debit card).