Please select your home edition
Edition
Ancasta Ker 33 728x90

Please Stop using Heats when you mean Races

by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World Team on 4 Jan 2014
13’ Skiffs National Championship, Manly, Brisbane Michael Chittenden
In sport whether its athletics, rowing or surfing, elimination series are run with heats, quarter finals, semis and finals.

So when non sailors read about heats in sailing, they reasonably expect they are part of an elimination series. But in sailing that is not the case … some classes and sailors use the word Heat when they mean Race.


Does it matter? Yes it does.

Wearing our Event PR hats, we often spend a lot of time on water trying to put sailing into simple terms, for mainstream media, even Sports Editors, preparing to do a live cross for Television or Radio.

They are constantly fearful; they say 'it’s so hard to understand sailing and I don’t want to get it wrong.'

There is enough confusion without adding more.

Well known International Race Officer Peter Moor is the founding chairman of an organisation call SATUH – Sailors Against Use of Heats.

Both he and another highly regarded Race Officer Denis Thompson, will almost chant in unison 'there is no reference to the term Heats in ISAF’s Racing Rules of Sailing.’

Using Heats when you mean Races is an old habit, still residual it seems in skiff classes for example.

Skiffies understand that terminology, but outsiders don't. Now days skiff sailors are on boats quite radically different to those of a century ago, so as the boats have developed the terminology must also.

The ISAF position is that we need to simplify sailing so it’s easier for people to understand.

The use of Heats instead of Races in a non elimination context is confusing.

Please don’t do it ….

If you have a differing opinion let's hear it.

But while you are formulating your argument consider that some European languages use the word regatta interchangeably between a race and a regatta.

So in the English translations that some ESL event media distribute -Sailors can win three regattas in a seven regatta series but still lose the regatta.

So now you be confused too?

So we change the relevant words to race ... in the interests of clarity.

Just like not using Heat when you mean Race ... is that fair enough??

We are working hard to spread the joy of sailing across the world, as the largest sailing news network in the world our stories can be read in 78 languages.

We have a 1244 sailing technical words and phrases translated into 15 languages, so far, to enhance the reader experience, can you imagine what difficulties Heats and Races causes?
North Technology - Southern SparsT Clewring - GenericColligo Marine 660x82

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - America's Cup champ says Paralympic racing is closest ever
Twice America’s Cup champion, Rick Dodson is extremely impressed with the standard of racing in the three man Sonar Twice America’s Cup champion, Rick Dodson is extremely impressed with the standard of racing in the three man Sonar keelboat class at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro. The regatta is being held in Guanabara Bay on three of the courses used for the Olympic Sailing Regatta in August.
Posted on 13 Sep
Debriefing the Rio 2016 Olympics with Team USA’s Helena Scutt
I talked with Team USA’s Helena Scutt to hear about her Olympic experience, and to learn more about her post-Rio plans. The 49erFX was introduced to Olympic circles when it replaced the Women’s Match Racing event following the 2012 Games. Not surprisingly, it drew high-performance sailors for the Rio 2016 Olympics, including Team USA’s Paris Henken and Helena Scutt. While Henken and Scutt were Olympic first-timers, they put on a strong show. I caught up with Scutt to hear more about her Olympic experience.
Posted on 8 Sep
A Q&A with Peter Bresnan ONE Palma’s founder and director
Sail-World interviewed ONE Palma’s founder Peter Bresnan to learn about the company’s partnership with McConaghy Boats For the past eight years, ONE Palma (formerly OneSails Spain) has been building a strong name, first as a sailmaker and later with refit work. Recently, ONE Palma and McConaghy Boats-legendary boatbuilders who have crafted some of the planet’s fastest sailboats-entered a business partnership. I caught up with Peter Bresnan, ONE Palma’s founder and director, to learn more about this new direction.
Posted on 2 Sep
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ train late on the Waitemata Harbour
Emirates Team NZ were out for a training session that ran into the early Thursday evening. Emirates Team NZ were out for a training session that ran into the early Thursday evening. The team were sailing their recently launched AC45 Surrogate test boat which features an articulated rudder gantry - taking the AC45 close to the geometry of the AC50 to be used in the 2017 America's Cup.
Posted on 1 Sep
Dateline Rio - Sailing Olympics review - as good as it gets?
The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The weather was better than Weymouth and Qingdao, the courses more varied, but from a working media perspective, it was the people running the Rio regatta who really made the difference.
Posted on 26 Aug
Rio 2016 - Plain speaking by triple-medalist on Olympic sailing moves
Triple Olympic medalist, Santiago Lange has been on the sharp end of changes made to Olympic classes and formats Santiago Lange, a six-time Olympian and Bronze medallist in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, won his third medal – Gold sailing in the Nacra 17 class. With that length of experience at an Olympic level, having sailed the Laser, Tornado and now Nacra 17 classes his comments on the future shape of the Olympic regatta was one of the highlights of the Medallists Media Conferences.
Posted on 25 Aug
An Q&A with Steve and Heidi Benjamin about the NYYC’s 2016 Queen’s Cup
Sail-World caught up with Steve and Heidi Benjamin to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup. When it comes to U.S. Grand Prix sailing, it’s hard not to encounter the names of Steve and Heidi Benjamin. The two highly polished sailors have been successfully campaigning their series of yachts, named SPOOKIE, for years, starting first with a Carkeek 40 and progressing to their TP52. I caught up with Steve and Heidi to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup
Posted on 19 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images of the penultimate race in the Finns - Scott wins
Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn, in what potentially could have been Giles Scott's (GBR) Gold medal winning race. In the end, the current world champion won in style.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images from the Mens RS:X Medal Race
Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class won before the race by Dorian van Rijsselberghe (NED) without needing points from the Medal Race. Nick Dempsey (GBR) was second on a similar basis.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Sailors talk of Life at the Extreme on the Atlantic Ocean
Certainly the Volvo Ocean Race catchcry of Life at the Extreme is not a phrase associated with the Sailing Olympics. The 470 crews were suffering the mixed emotions of survival of an extreme test by nature, the cold, and for some elation at their placings, after Thursday's battle for survival. In conditions that looked more out of the Volvo Ocean Race, than an Olympic sailing regatta, crews battled 20kt plus winds and Atlantic Ocean rollers that towered up to four metres.
Posted on 13 Aug