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All kids deserve TWO RUNS!!!
Date: Feb 18, 2010 6:31:16 AM PST
Author: itsaboutthekidsdammit

As the dust settles on Alpine '10 I wanted to start a dialog here regarding a rule change.

At 1 regular season venue and the class C finals an issue arose that many did not know existed under our rules; racers are NOT entitled to a second run if they DSQ in the first.

This is inconsistent with both long-established custom in MPA skiing and the spirit of taking care of ALL of our racers. I have seen firsthand the disappointment in kids who have felt they were being punished by having their second runs revoked.

I propose that a rule be added to the MPA rulebook requiring that a second run be provided to all racers when (like in almost all races) a second is part of the result. Participating in a true race situation with a complete course, timing and multiple competitors is a needed part of racer development and should not be limited by rule.

1 argument against this from a racing venue is that provision of a second run for all racers takes too much time. Though I appreciate the need for a business to achieve profit, I feel that venues should plan race numbers based on their ability manage the venue and time rather than registering as many racers as they can and culling out developing skiers by setting a tough course. This practice flies in the face of MPA's stated goal of serving all and not catering to elite athletes.

A second argument from that same venue is that all racers should “hike for the gate” in the name of team finishes. While this sounds good on the surface it's not always possible, takes the hiking decision out of the coach's hands, and punishes less experienced athletes who are bound to make errors while learning the sport and the rules.

A third speaks to the existence of the MPA rulebook which is difficult to maintain, ambiguous in some areas and generally unwieldy when considering that both athletes and officials must make adjustments between the MPA rules and USSA rules. Proponents suggest that we wholly adopt USSA rules to eliminate the problems associated with the differences. While I support this in the long run with the noted amendments of rules that provide for team skiing and a 2-run requirement, I think it unlikely that we'll persuade MPA. It's not a new idea and has been shot down before.

I hope this both begins a dialog and encourages coaches to speak to their administrators so that this issue may be put on the agenda of the next meeting of the ski committee. Further, I'd ask that coaches resolve at the next fall meeting to make a united statement in favor of a new 2 run rule to be brought to the ski committee by their liaisons.

Coaches, please act now and in October.

Last modified by itsaboutthekidsdammit on Feb 18 2010 6:36AM

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