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Certification & Training

Race Officer Training & Certification Working Party Click here for member list


 

 

Deadlines for Submitting Regional and National Race Officer Applications

The Race Management Committee's 2013 deadlines for submitting Regional and National Race Officer applications is outlined below. The committee review process is done quarterly. Please contact your Area Race Officer, if you have any questions concerning submitting an application.


Application Deadlines

Candidate Submits Application by - To ARO

ARO Posting to Committee

ARO Meeting

December 1

Thursday Preceding ARO Meeting

2nd Thursday Jan

March 1

Thursday Preceding ARO Meeting

2ndThursday April

June 1

Thursday Preceding ARO Meeting

2nd Thursday July

September 1

Thursday Preceding ARO Meeting

2nd Thursday October


 

 

The goals of Race Officer Certification program are:

  • To improve the quality of race management at all levels throughout the country to make racing more enjoyable for all.

  • To increase the standardization of race management practices, making it less confusing for the competitors.

  • To provide structured training for upgrading the skills of race officers.

  • To identify the most qualified active race officers throughout the country.

  • To make event organizers aware of the availability of highly qualified and certified race officers.

  • To provide coverage under the US SAILING general liability insurance to certified race officers.

The program has three levels: Club, Regional and National Race Officer. All appointments are for four-year terms, and are renewable. In addition to meeting criteria similar to those of the prior programs, participants in the program must attend an approved seminar and demonstrate their knowledge of race management rules and procedures by passing a test. The requirements, including the seminar and test, must be met for initial certification and for renewal (see below for some exceptions). All race officers that are certified under the program are covered under the US SAILING general liability insurance. This benefit can be provided because the programs include specific terms rather than lifetime appointments, and because the program includes training and an objective measurement of each individual's knowledge.

This program is for US SAILING members. In order to be certified, remain certified or renew your certification, you must be an individual or family member of US Sailing. If you are certified and your US Sailingmembership lapses, your certification and insurance coverage stop immediately.

Initial certifications for all levels end on December 31 of the fourth year after certification; renewals are for four years. In order to maintain certification, a certified race officer must continue to meet all of the program's requirements.

Required use of SOARS: Applicants for certification at any level and all certified race officers are required to maintain, at least annually, a record of their race management activities in SOARS, the US Sailing on-line automated reporting system. Go to http://www.ussailing.org/raceadmin/soars/index.asp; if you need assistance using SOARS, contact your Area Race Officer.

Applications can be downloaded from the race management page of the US Sailingweb site (http://raceadmin.ussailing.org/Race_Officers/CertificationTraining/Race_Officer_Application_Forms.htm).

Personal Conduct of Race Officers
The personal conduct of Race Officers must be above reproach at all times, before, during and after an event. Race Officers must be mature and temperate, moderate in their use of alcohol, especially careful of medications, and in full control of their faculties. Inappropriate conduct by a US Sailing Race Officer may be the subject of investigation and possible decertification or other disciplinary measures by the US SSailing Race Management Committee.

A history of US SAILING's Race Officer Program is available at:
http://raceadmin.ussailing.org/Race_Officers/CertificationTraining/Race_Officer_Program_History.htm

Club Race Officer
A Club Race Officer is expected to be able to properly run any race normally conducted at his or her local sailing organization, including organizing the race committee, writing correct sailing instructions, and doing the scoring.

In order to qualify as a Club Race Officer, a person must:

  • be an individual or family member of US Sailing;

  • be at least 18 years old;

  • own a copy of the current version of Join the Race Committee Team;

  • own a copy of the current version of the Race Management Handbook;

  • have experience as a racing sailor (no time limit);

  • have served at least twice in each race committee job, including scorer;

  • be recommended by a flag officer (or equivalent) of his local sailing organization, which must be affiliated with US Sailing;

  • be recognized as having outstanding personal character;

  • have been the principal race officer at least four times in the USA;

  • have had the experience necessary to properly run races for the types of boats, competitors, racing formats and events run at his local sailing organization;

  • have attended a complete, approved basic or advanced race management seminar;

  • have successfully passed the basic test, or the advanced race management test;

  • be approved by his Area Race Officer.

All of the experience (except the racing) must be during the four years ending at the time the complete application is received by the Area Race Officer. The minimum experience requirements must be met at events in the USA. In addition, it is recommended, but not required, that applicants be qualified in CPR and small boat handling.

The certified Club Race Officer program is administered within each US SAILING geographic Area by the Area Race Officer. The current Area Race Officers can be found on the Area Race Officers page on the Race Management web site at http://raceadmin.ussailing.org/Race_Officers/Area_Race_Officers.htm. The Area Race Officers may certify people as Club Race Officers whenever all of the material necessary for certification has been received.

Required use of SOARS: Applicants for certification at any level and all certified race officers are required to maintain, at least annually (by January 31 of the following year), a record of their race management activities in SOARS, the US Sailing on-line automated reporting system. Go to http://www.ussailing.org/raceadmin/soars/index.asp; if you need assistance using SOARS, contact your Area Race Officer.

Retesting: A person who has taken a basic or advanced race management test and not passed it may take another test only after completing another approved seminar.

Renewal: In order to renew his certification while certified, a Club Race Officer must submit an application for renewal, and must continue to meet all of the other program requirements, including attending a seminar and passing the appropriate test.

Lapsed certifications: A certified Club Race Officer whose certification and insurance have lapsed due to non-payment of US SAILING dues may be reinstated for the balance of his current term by his Area Race Officer only if his dues are paid within 60 days of his membership lapsing. Thereafter, all of the requirements for initial certification must be met.

Expired certification: To avoid a gap in your certification and insurance, your Area Race Officer must receive your complete application no later than November 30 of the year in which your certification expires.

As of August 2012, there were over 600 certified Club Race Officers. All of the certified race officers in a state or a US Sailing Area can be found by clicking on “Find a Race Officer” by selecting “Certified” as the Certification Level.

Regional Race Officer
A Regional Race Officer is expected to be able to go anywhere in his or her Area and serve as the principal race officer with any race committee to properly run any race or regatta normally conducted in that Area, including regional championship events. This includes organizing the event and the race committee, writing correct sailing instructions, and doing the scoring.

In order to qualify as a Regional Race Officer, a person must:

  • be an individual or family member of US Sailing;

  • be at least 21 years old;

  • own a copy of the current version of Join the Race Committee Team;

  • own a copy of the current version of the US SAILING Race Management Handbook;

  • own a copy of the current US Sailing Appeals and ISAF Cases (one book);

  • have experience in all race committee jobs, including scoring;

  • have experience as a racing sailor (no time limit);

  • be recommended by a competitor1 (who is not a member of the local sailing organization that is recommending him) in an event at which he was the principal race officer (not required for recertification unless requested);

  • be recommended1 by a US Sailing Regional or National Race Officer, Judge or Senior Judge or ISAF Race Official (who is not a member of the local sailing organization that is recommending him) who has observed his work as a principal race officer (not required for recertification unless requested);

  • be recommended by a flag officer1 (or equivalent) of his local sailing organization, which must be affiliated with US Sailing;

  • be recognized as having outstanding personal character;

  • have been the principal race officer at least five times in the USA, including at least one regional or higher level event (A "regional" event is a major regatta that includes competitors from a broad geographic area or determines a regional or higher level championship.);

  • have been the principal race officer at two or more venues;

  • have had the breadth of experience necessary to properly run races for the types of boats, competitors, racing formats and events run anywhere in his US Sailing Area;

  • have completed or been the primary instructor at an approved US Sailing advanced (two-day) race management seminar, or completed an ISAF IRO seminar;

  • have successfully passed the US Sailing advanced race management objective test at the Regional or National level, or passed the ISAF IRO test [not required for people who have been the primary instructor at a US Sailing advanced (two-day) seminar].

  • be recommended, without any qualification, by his Area Race Officer.

1 Neither an Area Race Officer nor a member of the US Sailing Race Management Committee may serve as this reference.

All of the experience (except the racing) must be during the four years ending at the time the complete application package is received by the Area Race Officer. The minimum experience requirements must be met at events in the USA. In addition, it is recommended, not required, that applicants be qualified in CPR and small boat handling. It is also recommended that applicants have been active in teaching race management, either seminars or on-the-water training.

Required use of SOARS: Applicants for certification at any level and all certified race officers are required to maintain, at least annually (by January 31 of the following year), a record of their race management activities in SOARS, US Sailing's on-line automated reporting system. Go to http://www.ussailing.org/raceadmin/soars/index.asp; if you need assistance using SOARS, contact your Area Race Officer.

Retesting: A person who has taken the advanced race management objective test and not passed at the desired level must complete another advanced seminar in order to take another test.

Both the Area Race Officer Working Group and the Race Management Committee consider applications for Regional Race Officer certification and renewal 4 times per year, in January, April, July and October. Only complete application packages will be considered. Applicants should be sure that all of the supporting material, including references, is in the hands of their Area Race Officer at least six weeks before the meeting at which the application will be considered. This permits the US SSailing staff to assemble a package of applications and circulate it to the committees in time for them to carefully consider each application before the meeting.

Renewal: In order to renew his certification while certified, a Regional Race Officer must submit an application and continue to meet the other program requirements, including attending a seminar and passing the appropriate test. Applicants for renewal are not required to submit references unless requested to do so by their Area Race Officer.

Lapsed certification: A Regional Race Officer whose certification and insurance have lapsed due to non-payment of US Sailing dues may be reinstated for the balance of his current term by the Race Officer Training and Certification working group only if his dues are paid within 60 days of his membership lapsing; thereafter, all of the requirements for initial certification must be met.

Expired certification: People whose certifications have expired and want to be certified again will be treated as renewals if a timely application is submitted for consideration at the first US SAILING semi-annual meeting after the certification's expiration; thereafter, applicants must meet all of the requirements for initial certification. To avoid a gap in your certification and insurance, your Area Race Officer must receive your application at least six weeks before the US Sailing meeting in the fall of the year in which your certification expires.

As of August 2012, there were over 90 certified Regional Race Officers. A list of Regional Race Officers in a state or a US Sailing Area can be found by clicking on “Find a Race Officer” and selecting “Regional” as the Certification Level.

 

National Race Officer
A National Race Officer is expected to be able to go anywhere in the country and serve as the principal race officer or race management consultant with any race committee to properly run any race or regatta, including national championship events. This includes organizing the event and the race committee, writing correct notices of race and sailing instructions, and doing the scoring.

In order to qualify as a National Race Officer, a person must:

  • be an individual or family member of US Sailing;

  • be at least 21 years old;

  • own a copy of the current version of Join the Race Committee Team;

  • own a copy of the current version of the US Sailing Race Management Handbook;

  • own a copy of the current US Sailing Appeals and ISAF Cases (one book);

  • have experience in all race committee jobs, including scoring;

  • have experience as a racing sailor (no time limit);

  • be recommended by a competitor1 (who is not a member of the local sailing organization that is recommending him) in an event where he was the principal race officer (not required for recertification unless requested);

  • be recommended1 by a US Sailing National Race Officer, Senior Judge or ISAF Race Official (who is not a member of the local sailing organization that is recommending him) who has observed his work as a principal race officer (not required for recertification unless requested);

  • have taught at least two race management seminars (not necessarily US Sailing approved);

  • be recommended by a flag officer1 (or equivalent) of his local sailing organization, which must be affiliated with US Sailing;

  • be recognized as having outstanding personal character;

  • have been the principal race officer or race management consultant2 at least five times in the USA, including at least one national or higher level event (a "national" event is a major regatta that determines a national or higher level championship);

  • have been the principal race officer at two or more venues, including one with current;

  • have had race committee experience (not necessarily as PRO) at a match or team racing event;

  • have had the breadth of experience necessary to properly run races for the types of boats, competitors, racing formats and events run anywhere in the country;

  • have attended or been the primary instructor at a complete, approved advanced (two-day) race management seminar;

  • have successfully passed the advanced race management objective test at the National level [not required for people who have been the primary instructor at an advanced (two-day) seminar];

  • have successfully passed the National Race Officer Problem Solving Test (PST) (note that the test graders do not know whose PSTs they are grading);

  • for initial NRO certification, be evaluated in detail and recommended without qualification by a US Sailing National Race Officer who has observed his work as a principal race officer throughout a regatta;

  • be recommended without qualification by his Area Race Officer.

1 Neither an Area Race Officer nor a member of the US Sailing Race Management Committee may serve as this reference.

2 In order to use an event at which you were the race management consultant (RMC) as one of your major events, you must attach a letter from the organizing authority for the event, appointing you to that role, and you must attach a brief statement to your application describing your responsibilities and identifying the PRO. A maximum of two of your five major events can be ones at which you were the RMC.

All of the experience (except the racing) must be during the four years ending at the time the complete application package is received by the Area Race Officer. The minimum experience requirements must be met at events in the USA. In addition, it is recommended, not required, that applicants be qualified in CPR and small boat handling.

Required use of SOARS: Applicants for certification at any level and all certified race officers are required to maintain, at least annually (by January 31 of the following year), a record of their race management activities in SOARS, the US Sailing on-line automated reporting system. Go to http://www.ussailing.org/raceadmin/soars/index.asp; if you need assistance using SOARS, contact your Area Race Officer.

Retesting: A person who has taken the advanced race management objective test and not passed at the desired level must complete another advanced seminar in order to take another test. A person who has taken the National Race Officer PST test and not passed may take another test once without participating in another advanced seminar. The retesting must be completed between 60 and 365 days of the original test. To request another opportunity to take a test, you must contact the principal instructor within 15 days of receiving your original test results. If a person takes the same PST test again (generally possible only at another seminar), only the original result will be considered valid. A person may take not more than two essay tests within a year, even if he attends multiple seminars.

Both the Area Race Officer Working Group and the Race Management Committee consider applications for National Race Officer certification and renewal four times per year, in January, April, July, and October. Only complete application packages will be considered. Applicants should be sure that all of the supporting material, including references, is in the hands of their Area Race Officer six weeks before the meeting at which the application will be considered. This permits the US Sailing staff to assemble a package of applications and circulate it to the committees in time for them to carefully consider each application before the meeting.

Renewal: In order to renew his certification while certified, a National Race Officer must submit an application and continue to meet the other program requirements, including attending a seminar and passing the appropriate tests. An applicant for renewal may substitute for the NRO PST a detailed evaluation and recommendation by a US Sailing National Race Officer who has observed his work as a principal race officer throughout a regatta. However, once an applicant for renewal has either taken an essay test or arranged for an NRO evaluation, he cannot change to the other requirement. Applicants for renewal are not required to submit references unless requested to do so by their Area Race Officer.

Lapsed certifications: A certified National Race Officer whose certification and insurance have lapsed due to non-payment of US Sailing dues may be reinstated for the balance of his current term by the Race Officer Training and Certification working group if his dues are paid within 120 days of his membership lapsing; thereafter, all of the requirements for initial certification must be met.

Expired certification: People whose certifications have expired and want to be certified again will be treated as renewals if a timely application is submitted for consideration at the first US SAILING semi-annual meeting after the certification's expiration; thereafter, applicants must meet all of the requirements for initial certification. To avoid a gap in your certification and insurance, your Area Race Officer must receive your application at least six weeks before the US SAILING meeting in the fall of the year in which your certification expires.

As of August  2012, there were 34 certified National Race Officers. A list of National Race Officers in a state or a US Sailing Area can be found by clicking on “Find a Race Officer” by selecting “National” as the Certification Level.

Additional References and Program Modifications
The Area Race Officers or the Race Management Committee may, at their sole discretion, seek additional references, and utilize information from those references when making recommendations and decisions regarding certification. Because the program is still evolving, there may be ongoing changes to both procedures and certification criteria.

Reviews of Certification Decisions
Anyone who feels that he has been denied certification inappropriately may request a review of that decision. Such requests must be in writing and submitted, with any supporting material, within 30 days of receipt of the letter denying certification. They must be sent to US SAILING, Attention: Race Administration Director. The full Race Management Committee will review the request and make a final decision no later than its next regular semi-annual meeting.

Seminar Instructors
In order to be approved as a primary instructor for US SAILING race management seminars, you must demonstrate your teaching ability and your willingness to serve. Instructors serve as volunteers, and are not paid for their services. Instructors are generally required to be certified as Regional or National Race Officers.
People who wish to be considered as primary instructors are required to submit a resume of their teaching experience (not limited to race management teaching) to the chairman of the Race Officer Training and Certification subcommittee, and to participate as an instructor at a relevant US SAILING Race Management Seminar at which the primary instructor is a member of the ROT&C subcommittee. Approved primary instructors who are inactive for two years must re-qualify in order to stay on the approved list.
The host organization for each seminar selects the instructor(s).
As of January 2008 there were thirty-six approved primary instructors, some qualified for both one- and two-day seminars, and some for one-day seminars only. Additional instructors may be approved as needed. A complete list of primary instructors is maintained here:
http://raceadmin.ussailing.org/Race_Officers/CertificationTraining/Race_Officer_Seminars/Seminar_Instructors.htm

International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Race Officer Program
People who have been National Race Officers for at least two years and have significant international experience may apply to become certified as International Race Officers by ISAF. Such applications require the endorsement of US SAILING. (Reference Document US SAILING Requirements for IRO Appointment Adobe - updated June 17, 2008) The current ISAF Yearbook and the ISAF web site (www.sailing.org, click on Officials near the top of the page, then highlight How to Become an ISAF Race Official) contain information regarding the qualifications and the application procedure. As of August 2010 there were 12 International Race Officers from the USA.

Changes vs. the prior edition are shown in red.

Web12 ; revised 01/2/2012

A set of Questions and Answers regarding the certification programs is available by clicking here:Adobe

http://raceadmin.ussailing.org/Race_Officers/CertificationTraining/ROP-Q-A.htm

A summary of the US Certification program is available in pdf form by clicking this link Adobe