There are a few people who have work and other commitments that make it difficult for them to meet the squad requirements as set out in the above articles. They have provided an alternative plans to fit a similar level of training around their commitments. This article discusses these as well as details on alternate trials and selection criteria for them.

Below are the arrangements for alternate training plans, trials and selection criteria. These have been decided on by the coaches based on feedback collected from the squad .

Alternate Training/Selection Requirements
These were provided by individual paddlers and can be found here. The outcome for these paddlers is below.

Craig & Mel – Adopt them as provided

Gav & Paul – Adopt them as provided with the addition that they need to be ranked in the top 5 based on the selection criteria, and after steerer selection(s). Paul is also supplementing his ski paddling with one OC6 a fortnight.

Alternate Trial Date
Regarding the alternate trial, due to illness Mandy will now join Gav and Eloise in trialling next Sunday morning (21/2). Gav will trial against the 9th ranked guy from this Sunday’s trial. Mandy and Elosie will trial against both the 9th and 10th ranked girls from this Sunday’s trial. As described above, Gav’s time will need to see him ranked in the top 5 based on the selection criteria and after steerer selection(s). An adjustment to raw times may need to be made to allow for differences in conditions between the alternate and main trial days.

More Details
Read on if you would like more background info to the above decisions.

Rationale for Gav’s Alternate Trial Approach
For Gav, needing to be ranked at least 5th is further complicated by him trialling at a later date. In theory he would need to race off against the 5th ranked paddler. The problem with this is that the 5th ranked paddler has nothing to lose/gain by such a retrial given it is still the 9th ranked paddler’s place that’s at stake.

To get around this we will still have him race off against the 9th ranked paddler but require his time to result in a top 5 ranking when compared to this Sunday’s main trial. There may be a need to adjust for conditions. If necessary this will be done using the Selection Panel’s best judgement and will take into consideration the main and alternate trial times of the initial 9th ranked guy and 9th and 10th ranked girls.

Mens Alternate Trial Scenarios
From this Sunday’s main trial Butch is the 9th ranked guy and Sundance is selected as the guy’s steerer. Thelma and Louise are the 9th/10th ranked girls. Butch races off against Gav at the Feb 21 alternate trial. Gav beats Butch by >2%. In order to make the crew though Gav’s ranking based on his trial time needs to be 5th or better amongst the remaining Gold Coast Cup contenders excluding Sundance.

If conditions at the alternate trial are significantly different from the main trial an adjustment will need to be made to Gav’s time to determine his final ranking. This will be done using the Selection Panel’s best judgement and will take into consideration the main and alternate trial times of Butch, Thelma and Louise.

Women Alternate Trial Scenarios
After this Sunday’s trial we will not be ranking the 9th and 10th girls between each other. We will just be determining who fills both positions. The alternate trial will be used to decide on their final ranking with respect to themselves and also Mandy and Eloise.

For example, this Sunday’s trials sees Thelma and Louise fill out the 9th and 10th spots. Following this trial we will not be determining whether Louise is 9th or Thelma is 9th. There maybe an indication of who is ranked 9th if their trial times differ by >2%, or there may not if they’re <2%. Either way their final ranking amongst each other will be determined based on their times from the alternate trial on Feb 21. This ranking will of course be made also with respect to Mandy and Eloise’s times.

It is entirely possible for Thelma to beat Louise at the main trial and then Louise to beat Thelma at the alternate trial. Their final ranking will be determined based on the selection crieteria and their alternate trial time only.

Rationale for Craig/Mel Training Approach
Both are very committed OC6 paddlers that have each put a lot of work in to continue to build on the skills and fitness wwweloped for the Cook Is campaign. They have both created training plans that will see them maintain a similar level of commitment and fitness around their work constraints to that of the rest of the squad.

Rationale for Gav/Paul Training Approach
From their alternate plans and your feedback it’s pretty clear that both Gav and Paul are in a similar position. They’re considered to both be top paddlers, both with lots of valuable ocean experience, both with a proven ability to quickly adapt to new paddling environments and both with other paddling focuses for a majority of the campaign.

Gav can commit to 2 wks more OC6 than Paul. This is balanced somewhat by the fact Paul is continuing to wwwelop ocean skills via his other commitments whereas Gav isn’t. Paul has also now committed to doing one OC6 a fortnight over Feb & Mar to stay in touch with OC6 specifics.

To reflect that they continue to be top paddlers we are requiring a higher ranking in order to make the team. Just scraping in at 8th or 9th is not enough given in this case they would be bumping out paddlers who, with the specific training remaining, would be as good if not a better asset to the crew.

Some Things We’re Not Doing
Although we may use a vote as input, in general we won’t use one to decide on criteria or crews. For coaches voting is a bit of an easy way out in that if things don’t work out we can simply point to the vote and say you guys wanted this. Whether ultimately right or wrong, as coaches we really need to exercise (and improve) judgement around such decisions using your input as one of the considerations. In addition we will use your vision as to where you want to take PD Outrigging, for which the first step towards creating one was made at the Jan 18 OC club meeting.

We also won’t be doing any later retrials closer to the event to measure the effect of the alternate training plans. This is due to people having to make travel arrangements in advance.