Judge Not

Posted on July 30, 2011

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One day all judging towers will be as good as this one.

Erected at Downend by Croyde Surf Club for the Atlantic Watersports Games, this little beauty was spacious, remote and with a superb view of the action from low tide up to high. Not only was it practical success, it is a great place to hang a banner and really gave the contest site some presence. A far cry from the usual flapping tent with random people wandering in to ask if we can make an announcement for their lost dog! Having said that the double decker bus was good for the NightSurf, if a little cramped and awkward with the seats at ninety degrees to the way you want to look.

The credibility of any contest lives or dies on the quality of the judging. Anything to make the judges job an easier one, a good view and no distractions so that they can concentrate fully is surely a good investment by any sponsor.

Click on the pictures to see them bigger, pictures taken on Canon 5D c/w 24 – 70mm f2.8 L.

More on Judging:

It always surprises me that more contest surfers don’t do the Judging Course. Surfing is a unique sport; in that most of the participants and spectators do not understand the rulebook, unlike other sports such as rugby or football. I often get asked “What are the judges looking for today?” and the short answer is the same as they’ve always looked for. The ‘criteria’ doesn’t help either – it’s a self-conscious and discomfited description of the type of surfing that gets ten points. With this in mind and the fact that most surfers don’t want to sit down for the full 6 hours of a normal judging course. I am working on a cut down version designed specifically for surfers so that they can get a handle on the rulebook and what exactly the judges are looking for. It should be ready to roll out in the autumn and I suspect that the juniors at CSC will be the first guinea pigs to trial it. More later.

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