Lack of Interest In Contest Flying

Discussion in 'Competition Rocketry' started by WhiskyTangoFoxtrot, Jul 28, 2019.

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  1. Jul 28, 2019 #1

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    There are three NAR sanctioned clubs in my general area and when I visited them to consider joining, all three strongly said that they were NOT interested in holding contests of any kind. Since that was their choice, I didn't join. Please tell me the best way to change their minds. I've been in and out of the hobby because I grew sick and tired of whoosh, pop, wash, rinse and repeat.
     
  2. Jul 28, 2019 #2

    rharshberger

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    Volunteer to be Contest Director, that is a position that is harder to fill than any other in a club IMO.
     
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  3. Jul 28, 2019 #3

    BSNW

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    I would really love to tell you why in detail...IMO....they probably don't want to do contest launches. I got a hunch if I did.....the thread would turn into a flame war. I am also not in the mood to get piled on....by folks who will no doubt take great offense to my input. Anyway....

    But in a nut shell......I was in a club that was primarily sport....they were convinced to take on contest....and shortly thereafter the club developed major friction and many folks left. As I understand.....it is now pretty much a "contest" club. I went to visit other clubs that happen to do competition.....and from my experiences and IMO.....if you fly sport in a contest culture......you fly alone. And if the club is doing a contest launch....and you want to fly sport....be prepared to be treated like a third class rocketeer (again...just my experience).

    Before I get chewed out! This is nothing personal....just mine and a number of my friends past experiences...that is all. Maybe these clubs you visited know this....and they don't want to do contest.....or maybe they just don't have an interest in it...who knows....just speculation. Again...before I get roasted....these are just my actual and personal experiences and my opinions and speculations...your milage may vary...there I said it....

    BTW: a club member from the "contest club" that I visited asked me a few months later why I had not returned to launch with them.....I told him why...saying everything I just said in this post...he said he agreed with me and said he was thinking of talking to the club about it.......remember, this is just my personal experience and i mean no harm...

    Just a final illustration....on the website of a club that does contests, they list their contest launches as such, but they list the "regular" launches as "public" launches! I thought NAR welcomed sport or ANY interested folk at all sanctioned events? Based on my experiences.....I know exactly what they mean in how they categorize their launches......
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019
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  4. Jul 29, 2019 #4

    UhClem

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    I know that around here interest in NAR contests fell off a cliff after the rules were butchered in the name of increasing participation. But one of the supposed advantages is that any NAR member can schedule and sanction a contest launch. So if you want a contest, step up and be the contest director.
     
  5. Jul 29, 2019 #5

    BSNW

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    Is increased participation a bad thing? :) what do I not understand?
     
  6. Jul 29, 2019 #6

    H_Rocket

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    The purists felt that the challenge of competition was being excessively diluted. These were the hard core folks who participated for years. They lost interest as, in their opinion, the challenge had been lost. The people being attracted would dabble a bit and then lose interest. This leaves those who like the difficulty left with watered down rules and no challenge for their skills.

    As to why clubs don't want to do competition, my take is it creates a logistical challenge. A competition launch has different needs than a sport launch. The competition can monopolize time and, in some cases, pad availability. If a sport flyer want to just step up to the pad and do his "whoosh-pop" they likely do not want to stand idle while a contest flyer monkeys with their highly precision flight to get things perfect.
     
  7. Jul 29, 2019 #7

    KennB

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    Being one of the clubs contacted by WTF, I know my answer was not strongly "NOT interested". Rather, I took the approach suggested by @rharshberger, if you want to see it happen, volunteer to run it.
    CMASS has a pad layout that could accommodate the time required to set up a contest rockets as mentioned by @H_Rocket and still let the sportos keep flying. All it would take is some coordination and volunteerism. With 150+ flights at our small launches and 300+ at our large field, we can fit in contest flyers if there is interest in doing this.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2019
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  8. Jul 29, 2019 #8

    MichaelRapp

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    Ever since I got back into the hobby, wanting to try contest flying has been on my radar. I feel that building a rocket to achieve a goal would be a lot of fun.

    I'm still so new to my local club that I'm still trying to see where any interest is. One thing that I like about the new NAR rules is that doing a contest seems much less formalized in that it almost could come together ad hoc or on a whim at a sport launch. That is, one doesn't need to make a sport launch into a contest-only launch.
     
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  9. Jul 29, 2019 #9

    Zeus-cat

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    From what I have been told participation in contests has had a downward trend for a long time. The rules were changed a few years ago in an attempt to revitalize competition flying.

    Since the rules changed and sections (clubs) were dropped as a category, I quit competing. I only competed to help my club and had no interest in being at the top of the standings myself.

    I have been told that sections will be competing again as the rules were modified again.
     
  10. Jul 29, 2019 #10

    cwbullet

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    BINGO
     
  11. Jul 29, 2019 #11

    hobie1dog

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    There's no such thing as an equal or fair competition. Humans have the insatiable need to feel superior to others, always wanting to pump their fist in the air, hoisting up trophies, claiming that they are better than others, and have no concern over how others feel for being the "losers". Rarely is there any form of competition where everyone uses the exact same hardware, and even then the biggest difference is the amount of experience people have over others.

    I have my flame suit on, but don't waste your time replying.
     
  12. Jul 30, 2019 #12

    UhClem

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    Increased participation would be good. But there was no evidence presented to show that the changes would attract new participants. It also appears to be falling far short of the goal stated in 2017 that participation would triple from around 200 to 600.
     
  13. Jul 30, 2019 #13

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Ah, Mr. Blade: When was the last time CMASS held a contest?
     
  14. Jul 30, 2019 #14

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Ah Mr Rocket: When was the last time CATO held a contest?
     
  15. Jul 30, 2019 #15

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Tell you what: When I organize a contest with RIMRA CATO or CMASS (Fat chance for all 3) I'll make sure everyone gets a certificate of participation. Happy now?
     
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  16. Jul 30, 2019 #16

    mcderek

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    I'd be interested in competition except for the turnover in events. My club used to offer a couple events at most contests. The challenge for me is that they were different events. If I built a parachute duration rocket for a contest it would be a long time before that class would be offered again. It wasn't worth the effort for me. If the parachute duration class (any class) was offered in two or more contests then I would consider participating. I'm not picking on my club. The serious contest participants love to build and try all the events. Worked great for them, not for me. Which I'm okay with.
     
  17. Jul 30, 2019 #17

    KennB

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    I'm sure it's been quite a long time since the last NAR Pink Book style competition at a CMASS launch. There are those in the club who have made regular pilgrimages to NARAM to do contest flying and newer members who used to do it at their previous sections so it's not totally foreign to some members.
    Maybe it'll just take someone with charm and tact to pull it together.
     
  18. Jul 30, 2019 #18

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Thank you for making my point I'm sure it has a lot to do with how New Englanders view competition in general.
     
  19. Jul 30, 2019 #19

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    See in my view for the most part, model rocketeers treat model rockets as fireworks with recovery systems. Woosh pop. Wosh pop Woosh pop. Break it down. Lets go hit a restaurant and drink some beer
     
  20. Jul 30, 2019 #20

    BSNW

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    Lordy...I was not going to say anything more about this...but your comment illuminates the "elitism" I have seen with competition culture. Please...I have seen the whoosh-pop of those 1/4 A motors....I too can cram a huge mylar parachute in a BT-20 unpainted rocket that takes about 20min to build...and watch it float away to be litter. Just to be clear...if you like that....that is cool with me...but to consider your brand of rocketry superior is really un-cool. What would you say to Vern Estes? "Hey man....your model rocketry empire is nothing more than whoosh-pop-whoosh-pop" .

    To say that most people (other than the "superior" competition class people) view rocketry as fireworks with parachutes has not only proven my point from my original post but has generalized all the other people who find great enjoyment out of building and flying model rockets of ALL sizes.

    The competition ego is truly your greatest liability and is probably one of the major the reasons it is losing popularity (I know..it is always someone else's fault...like the NAR or those knuckle draggers that fly model or "gasp" high power rockets..) Really, who wants to come out on a weekend to launch and have a good time and deal with that kind of ego? Please....get over yourselves.

    BTW: there is nothing wrong with a day of launching with my friends (with little whoosh pops to large roars) then go out to get pizza and beer....its called having fun with friends....try it sometime.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
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  21. Jul 30, 2019 #21

    BSNW

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    Wow.....yea boy..."those New Englanders".....Tell us more of what you think of those New Englanders....tell us everything!
     
  22. Jul 30, 2019 #22

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    They're a nope can say that. Now. Tell me one New England Rocketry club that has done any recent contest flying
     
  23. Jul 30, 2019 #23

    dr wogz

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    wow..
     
  24. Jul 30, 2019 #24

    BSNW

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    wow.....is correct.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
  25. Jul 30, 2019 #25

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Tell me the difference between sport launching and a fireworks display. Except for the recoverability there is none. Hell you can even call a CATO an exploding firework. I laugh at all you guys who peer into the sky because in a lot of cases, the launch is over in a fraction of a second and the rocket disappears. I hope you have great fun trying to pick the rocket up in some of the marginal launch weather I've seen in You Tube videos. I'm reminded of the cartoon character that scratches his head and says, "Which way did they (it) go, George. I hope the beer is cold and the pizza is cooked properly
     
  26. Jul 30, 2019 #26

    WhiskyTangoFoxtrot

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    Then again, TARC flying is competition. I wonder how TARC competitors are treated at your fields. Do you tell them to "check their competitive attitude " at the door? Maybe you can point out the lunacy of launching a rocket with a payload, getting it to fly to a set height and duration. Do you point out their elitism? Or perhaps you point out that their competitive ego is their liability? I mean you should tell the TARC competitors that their competitive ego is spoiling your good time and you can't deal with that kind of ego. Or do you take the Cheech and Chong attitude and sloppily say" TARC's different man ? ".
     
  27. Jul 30, 2019 #27

    BSNW

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    Yep...you da' man.....either you are trolling us or this is turning into an unbelievable thread! I also feel bad you are such a Mr. Grumpy Pants. They DID say you can do contest (like many times) if you volunteered to be contest director. So what's your problem? If you like it so much do it! You can boss people around AND fly contest....sounds like something you would enjoy. Otherwise this is turning out to be just as fun as "WHOOSH-POP!.....where did it go?" To funny. Really, I feel bad for you man....lighten up.
     
  28. Jul 30, 2019 #28

    BSNW

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    I have launched with TONS of TARC folks and I can tell you....they have NO egos like some of the NAR competition folk (at least the ones I have previously described) They are goofy, fun, laugh at themselves and like to learn and launch. From my experience...they are a fun bunch. They are a totally different crowd....Dude...now you are ripping on TARC!
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
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  29. Jul 30, 2019 #29

    BSNW

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    WTF.....I really feel bad you are so grumpy. I have gone from expressing my experiences with competition clubs to really feeling bad for you.....I mean it, I am not being sarcastic......either your trolling us/me or your very.....something....Either way, go complain in your coffee. I know when to bow out...and while your moaning about New England Rocketry and everyone else....we will be having fun at the launch field. Good Day Sir.....
     
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  30. Jul 30, 2019 #30

    KennB

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    Reviewing WTF's 31 posts at the time I'm posting this, grumpy doesn't begin to express this person's attitude.
    I suggest WTF form a section exclusively for contest flying in New England so life will be enjoyable again for both "factions".
    Do trolls hang on to threads this long or do they just set off stink bombs, sit back and watch?
     
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