President’s Message, January 2012

Dear fellow sailors,

I want to talk a little about the very prestigious Flying Scot Fleet of the Year award. You may wonder just what it takes to be named Fleet of the Year. The award has been won by many different fleets, both big and small, and from big and small yacht clubs alike. It has long been thought that your fleet has to host a national event to win this award, but the regattas do not have to be national in nature to be scored for this award. Many factors are considered, and most have to do with encouraging membership in the Flying Scot Sailing Association (FSSA) and getting people into Flying Scots.

Here are the factors that are considered:

  • The number of members in your fleet and the percentage that are FSSA members
  • The number of new members in your fleet in the past year
  • How many Flying Scot races are sponsored by your fleet
  • How often you put five or more Flying Scots on the starting line in local races
  • Using Flying Scots in your sailing instruction programs, either for juniors or for adults
  • Regattas hosted by your fleet this year
  • Whether your fleet acts as race committee for another fleet’s regatta
  • How many of your fleet competed in the (1) NAC (2) Midwinters (3) Wife-Husband (4) ACC (5) Districts
  • Whether your fleet has a newsletter
  • How many Scots n’ Water articles were written by members of your fleet this year
  • Your fleet’s creative ideas to encourage fleet growth
  • Your fleet’s creative ideas to encourage FSSA membership
  • Special activities your fleet sponsors clinics, special social events, fun races, etc.
  • Members of your fleet involved in FSSA leadership--Executive Committee or District Governor
  • Members of your fleet certified by US SAILING

I want to emphasize that you do not have to be a big yacht club to put together the activities to win this award. Our fleet is with Massapoag Yacht Club, a very small club with a screened pavilion on a small lake in Sharon, Massachusetts. We have worked hard to grow our fleet; to be active in racing and social events, sailing and race instruction, and clinics; and to encourage people to buy Flying Scots and join FSSA. We did think we were not going to be considered for this award, but we submitted the entry in 2006 and were awarded the trophy! We have tried a few times since then but have not won the award again. We will continue to try and work hard and will submit our form in any year we feel we have been active enough.

Here are the recent winners. You can reach out to them to see what they are doing to stay active and keep the fleets alive and prospering:

  • 2008 Fleet 177, Cedar Point Yacht Club, Westport, Connecticut
  • 2009 Fleet 163, Lake Nockamixon Sailing Club, Telford, Pennsylvania
  • 2010 Fleet 96, Southern Yacht Club, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • 2011 Fleet 6, Deep Creek Lake, Deep Creek, Maryland

You need to have an active fleet that encourages fleet and FSSA membership. So think about the activities of your fleet over a year’s time and go ahead and apply for the Fleet of the Year award this year or in a coming year. You might just win it and put your fleet’s name on that trophy, along with the other fleets that were very active, worked hard, and won the privilege. Remember, your fleet cannot be considered if you do not submit an entry. And you’ll never know if you can win it unless you try. I hope we see your fleet in nomination in the near future.