International Lightning Class Association
March 15, 2012 – St Petersburg Yacht Club
Call to Order
The Governing Board Meeting was called to order by President Rob Ruhlman at 9:25 AM
Roll Call by Secretary John Faus. In Attendance: John Faus, Rob Ruhlman, Bill Clausen, Victor Lobos, Ryan Ruhlman, Brian Hayes, James Taylor, Debbie Probst, Ian Edwards, Todd Wake, Jo Ann Jones, David Starck, Bill Faude, Valerie Holly-Tardif, Larry Frost, Mark Schneider, Tom Allen Jr. With proxy ballots received or designated, quorum achieved.
Reading of the Minutes from the last meeting
Bill Clausen made a motion to dispense with reading of the minutes, seconded by Todd Wake, and unanimously approved.
Reports of Officers
President’s Report – Rob Ruhlman
President Ruhlman started off by thanking Jo Ann Jones and Terry Hamilton, our Southern Circuit Co-Chairs, for organizing a successful Southern Circuit. This year we had 46 boats in Savannah and 40 in Miami. It is projected to be about 55 here in St Pete. 28 boats are sailing in all three events.
Treasurers Report – Victor Lobos/John Faus
Treasurer Lobos and Secretary Faus gave an overview of the 2011 Year End Financials. North and South American dues were down from 2010 figures. Europe was up over 100% from 2010 and that is a result of the Finnish Lightning Association and their re-focus on the Class with hosting the Youth Worlds this year and their Fleet 328 celebrating their 50th Anniversary. Flashes Advertising was down. Class merchandise and sail royalties were up for the year. Expenses for the most part were all held lower then 2010. Communication Expenses, Regatta Expenses and the Yearbook (two books printed in 2011) line items all saw a slight increase from 2010. Faus reported that he attended the US Sailing Symposium and that the Class is financially stable compared to other Classes. Currently for 2012 we are continuing to trend slightly down. Please remember to encourage your Fleet Members to renew their dues. Discussion ensued regarding paper billing, on line renewal process and the possibility of automatic membership renewals. There was also discussion regarding a VP of Special Projects possibly assisting with the annual membership campaign. The 2012 budget was differed to the evening’s Winter Meeting.
Chief Measurers report – Bill Clausen (submitted written report)
I would like to thank both the competitors and the measurement teams for an excellent job of measurement at North Cape (North Americans) and Buzios Brazil (Worlds). Some good news is that the new digital scale has been recertified and tested to be accurate to within a pound or two! I am recommending we use a simplified measurement sheet at Houston for the North American Championships. It is similar to the one used last year at North Cape. (Example Attached- Measurement Control Sheet #1). I would like to ask sail makers and boat owners when they order or make a new spinnaker to get numbers that really contrast with the color panel in the sail. Black numbers on a dark blue sail and white numbers on a yellow sail are very difficult for a race committee to read at a downwind finish. Thanks. I will have the class scale available tomorrow and Saturday if you would like to have your boat's weight checked. In addition to Clausen’s written report he thanked Mark Schneider for calibrating the Class Scale.
Secretaries report – John Faus
John Faus had nothing additional to report.
Vice Presidents and Committee Reports
VP Worlds – David Starck reported that we are in good shape with the organizers for the Youth Worlds in Finland this summer. It is looking like we will have 8-10 Countries participate. It is important to have good representation at this event and Darryl Waskow will be attending as Chief Judge. He has been assisting as the ILCA lesion representative.
Starck continued to report on the 2013 Worlds in Italy. It is looking like we will have good representation from the US Sailors. There is also talk of 4 boats from Brazil making the trip to Italy. More information about Numana will be posted soon to help people plan for the trip. Discussion ensued regarding the possibility of shipping boats out of Charleston, SC or Jacksonville, FL immediately following the Southern Circuit. Starck thanked Mark Schneider for his continued support with International shipping of boats.
North American’s Report - Ian Edwards reported that planning is coming along well. Starts will most likely be scheduled for 12:30pm when the sea breeze fills in. It will allow competitors to sail hard and have a great time. There are many different housing options, please check the regatta website. He encouraged double stacking boats from your home clubs. Discussion ensued regarding ideas to promote the event.
Brian Hayes reported that planning for the 2013 NA’s is really in great shape. The website is up, www.2013nas.com and the goal is 95 boats. The committee is trying to stick to a $350 entry fee that includes everything. They have developed 3 different budgets based upon different sponsorship proposals. They have already begun working with the Doubletree for a hotel deal. Nyack Boat Club is very excited to be hosting the Womens, Juniors and Master’s. Discussion ensued regarding the awards banquet during the NA’s had to be a formal event or if that type of event could be held during a week night. The dates for 2013 were discussed and were confirmed for August 13-17 for the WJM’s and August 17-23 for the Championship Divisions.
Secretary Faus reported that 2 bids have been received to date to host the 2014 NA’s. All bids are due by August 1, 2012.
Lightning Labs –Todd Wake reported that we had great results from last year. He is working on this year’s schedule.
Boat Grant – BG committee member Bill Faude reported that he enjoys working on this committee. They are well organized and it is a pleasure to work with this group. This year we received great applications, 2 teams have been chosen and they will be announced by Allen Terhune during the Winter Meeting. The selection process is well refined. Next year we could use more applicants.
Southern Circuit - Jo Ann Fisher, thanked committee co-chair, Terry Hamilton for really helping to organize and plan the Southern Circuit. She has brought many new ides to the event. Thank you to everyone that participated.
Additional Written Reports:
Classic Boats Report - Robert Astrove, VP Classic Boats
While last year we expanded our schedule from one to three events for Wooden Lightning’s and our turnouts were disappointing. We are regrouping and working harder on participation this year. We are already engaged in planning and promoting an event put on by Wooden Boat Magazine in Rock Hall, Maryland in May. We will have our annual Wooden Lightning Get Together in Syracuse the first weekend in August, and this year we are going to try to get a Woody fleet together for the Philadelphia Cup at the end of September. I’m sure we will again have multiple woody’s participating at Delta Lake’s (Central NY) regatta in August. And we are in the early stages of seeing if we can get some activity started in the Mid West this year or next.
On the organizational front, we have been working with Laura and have recently updated and combined our various email lists, now with over 700 emails of people who currently own, owned, or have expressed interest in a classic Lightning. The Classic Lightning Fleet and its regatta participation is a small part of the equation. I can tell you I’ve never had so many people contact me who are looking at boats to buy; three initial contacts this week alone. Activity on our internet discussion board has also accelerated indicating there is a healthy level of restoration activity underway.
Charters ratified or revoked
Secretary Faus announced that we have one application for a new Fleet. The first is in Guaratuba, Brazil, Fleet 524 “Guará”. Diego Zagonel de Camargo Mello is the Fleet Captain and Guaratuba is scheduled to host the Brazilian National Championship in September 2012. They have 7 registered Skipper Members. Bill Faude moved to ratify the charter. Todd Wake seconded, all approved.
Ratifications of Executive Committee Rulings
President Ruhlman reported that the Executive Committee has set the NA Ratio at 1:1. He reports that the Executive Committee wanted to encourage participation in Houston. Todd Wake made a motion to ratify the ruling and Ian Edwards seconded, all approved.
Secretary Faus began by reviewing the proposed revision to the Rules Governing All Lightning Class Sanctioned Championships with respect to the re-wording of our Area definitions. The main purpose of this amendment is to incorporate Countries with active Lightning participation such as Australia and Nigeria into our Area allocations. The proposal is consistent with ISAF’s Area definitions. While the intent of the proposal was agreed upon, the wording was still not to the liking of the Governing Board. Todd Wake made a motion to table the vote and work further on the proper wording. Bill Faude seconded, all were in favor of revisiting this motion in August.
Secretary Faus introduced and an amendment to the Document Governing All Sanctioned Lightning Class Championships, specifically to the Articles which apply to the North American Championship. It is proposed to replace the word “Shall” with the word “May” in Article XI, section (e). This re-wording will allow bids for the North American Championships to be received with or without provisions for the Women’s, Masters and Juniors Championships. This will allow for separate bids to be considered for the WMJ’s or NA Championships in the future if it is needed. Bill Faude made a motion to accept and Todd Wake seconded. All approved.
Secretary Faus continued and introduced a resolution to Change the ILCA Rules Governing Area Championships, Article XIII, submitted by the Texas District Commodore, Clarke Newman. This resolution was presented to take effect on April 1, 2012, and shall expire on March 31, 2013, at which time, the original language shall, again, be in force. The resolution states that “All competitors entitled to enter the North American Championships shall be divided into two Divisions—the Championship Division and the President’s Cup Division—based upon the results of a Qualifying Series. However, if the number of competitors in a North American Championship Regatta is sixty-nine (69) or fewer, then the Qualifying Series shall not be sailed, and all competitors shall compete in the Championship Division.” (Full Wording of the Resolution – Link) Discussion ensued. David Starck made a motion to accept the resolution as submitted and Bill Clausen seconded, approved.
Southern Circuit Review Committee
Bill Faude, chair of the Southern Circuit Review Committee, stated that back in July of 2011 President Ruhlman requested that a committee be formed to review Southern Circuit (SC) to increase its perceived value and subsequent participation. The committee began by surveying the ILCA Membership and held interviews with current and potential host clubs. Conclusions from the survey included that by adjusting the current format will result in more participation and defend against defection. Two venues would be most preferred and would possibly equate to less expense. A schedule adjustment is also warranted which could also possibly equate to more racing per day per dollar spent. Our relationship with all current clubs is very strong and they are willing to continue hosting us with or without changes to the current schedule.
The Committee recommends implementing a revised schedule for 2013, one that will reduce the duration to 9 days from current 11 (5 business days, 2 weekends). It also recommends revising the current format by moving to two venues. The committee suggests too continue to attend all current venues within the first two years and to institute a dependable rotation. It proposes to begin to include Pensacola YC as a new venue in 2015 and to continue to identify other potential venues. Furthermore to schedule a 2 venue circuit that includes at least one of the current 3 venues for the foreseeable future. Discussion ensued. Ruhlman asked Faude to present the results at the Winter Meeting this evening.
With the approval of the Executive Committee, Secretary Jeffers announced that the front portion of the Yearbook will begin to be scaled back to allow for a more timely release of the yearbook in the first quarter of each year. These feature type articles/interest stories will now be featured in the Flashes Newsletter. Flashes will move to three full issues, one in the second, third and fourth quarters. Flash Blasts will be e-mailed weekly or as updates accumulate. The 3 yearly issues of Flashes will be available in print and distributed to those that would like to purchase this additional option. Otherwise it will continue to be e-mailed to all members at no cost. This new format will allow Flashes to become more of a feature type publication and regular regatta results can be found on the ILCA website.
Bill Clausen made a motion to adjourn this meeting of the Governing Board. It was seconded by Larry Frost.
President Rob Ruhlman expressed his thanks to all who attended for their support and contributions to the discussions.