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Zero Based Scoring


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@ToddL, "Does this impact the Buckeye Buoy Tour scoring spreadsheets?" -- Yes, the spreadsheets will need to be updated but ZBS will actually simplify the spreadsheet. Right now it very complicated because it has to look at the skiers division, then determine max speed based on division, then find the right buoy count. It's a big chart where as with ZBS the buoy count is the same for every person regardless of what division they're in. It also simplifies the Buckeye Buoy Tour scoring because no longer will their be a 12 buoy bump if you're starting at 15 off and then ski your max speed. If your average is 3 buoys @ 15 off, then you had to run 15 off or your buoy count was scored at Longline. Tough position to be in. I will be happy to update the spreadsheets and distribute them to anyone who wants a copy.

 

@ALPJr, Yes, you can opt for 36 mph at M3 and up.

 

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I personally know a large group of slalom course skiers likely to come try their first sanctioned tournament this summer and zbs is the only reason it will happen. None of them will come close to impacting anyone at the top of the rankings list. Maybe there is a way to address how this new rule impacts the top skiers without eliminating it as an option for newer skiers.
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As @GK touched on, there are very few skiers into -39 IRL. Some bunched in low -38, a lot piled in -35 and -32. At the tournaments I go to in FL and went to in WA skiers of that level in M3-M6 are the bulk of the skiers. And make up a bulk of the officials, and buy more boats and gear due to having the money to do so. As @GK also touched on, a lot of these skiers did not ski M2 or earlier. They just came to the sport later in life. Most of my hard core skier buddies didn't compete (or even know what it was) when they were younger. Quite a few waited til M3 to start competing as they specifically did not want to ski 36. My experience going to 36 so far is these M3-M6 skiers are going to have to go 36 to hang with the guys they used to be equivalent to.

 

For M3-M6 tournament skiers:

It will be interesting to see if the "never 36" guys speed up, accept dropping behind those around them that do, or if they leave.

It will be interesting to see if guys with physical issues where 36 is too much will accept dropping behind those around them that go 36, or if they leave.

It will be interesting to see if guys for who 36 is unsuccessful will accept dropping behind those around them that successfully go 36, or if they leave.

 

Unfortunately I think we will lose more than a few, particularly in M5-M6. Once they are gone they find other things and that's that. I believe this rule will be a net loss as far as membership goes. Hope I am wrong but my current assessment.

 

@MillerTime38 As an M5 guy my view is the opposite: "But that's my point, I think this will affect M3 and MM and I think we will see a lot of M4 and M5 guys skiing 36."

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With this new rule it has in essence changed all men's slalom speed to 36. So it would take only one to decide to ski 36 to make everyone else ski against a 6 buoy handicap

 

There is a way to allow this for new skiers and juniors. Cap the mandatory speed as set forth by age division and IWSF, who will not recognize this non sense in their scoring system. So add another seperate rankings list and scorebook.

 

 

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What the heck seems fine to me. What if you can run the course at 38 mph? That might be the next step (or is that 61 Kph?). I'm for it. I doubt it would change the outcomes much. Most advanced skiers are really used to their conditions. Changing speed for anyone won't be a give-me type of thing that just cranks his/her score up.
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At the risk of making another rule change, only credit 3 buoys for the overspeed passes.

 

There are health reasons for max speeds. Protecting the young or old by adjusting the max speed is a proven method to keep skiers in the sport (note how big the older divisions are). But there are good reasons to overspeed - ski performance, unfamiliarity with the new speed, and ego. By crediting only half the overspeed pass, a reasonable balance between the good reasons for the max speed and the freedom to choose the speed that suits you best is maintained.

 

The underspeed part of ZBS is critically important to developing, injured or reentering skiers. Long overdue rule change.

 

Big tournaments comply with IWSF rules so nothing will change there. With computers, scoring programs are capable of handling any scoring complexity. It is possible to implement the optimal scoring system.

 

Eric

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@sunperch shame on me for assuming, haha.

 

@Chad_Scott, IWSF allows anyone 18+ to ski 58k and you are lumped with all people skiing 58k, at 35 you get to make the choice but are not forced to go 55k. ZBS allows for people not to slow down, similar to IWSF, it just puts them in the same division. At our L class tournaments we have had multiple skiers 35+ compete at 58k just because the score would actually count as such.

 

There is a lot of concern in this thread about how the L9 guys will be affected, but this is a very small portion of skiers in our sport. I know quite a few people that shorten the line below their max speed for safety and for their own enjoyment. I know others that prefer to go faster than their capped speed for the same reasons. As @MISkier has said, it just makes the faster speeds count. If you are really in the running to win you are going to do whatever is necessary, but for the other 95% of the membership, they are not going to go 36mph to get a small advantage at the risk of getting hurt.

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IWSF does not give a six buoy scoring advantage if you elect to ski 36 in a 34 mph division. Of course you can ski but to gain 6 buoys isn't backed by any real data.

 

There is more than just the top few disagree with the 6 buoy advantage I have heard the same from men's 6 skiers

 

I will be willing to bet this rule isn't going to spike membership. And I personally do not find this rule to be fair. If it's about new members then capping the speed based upon age won't effect those you are speaking about.

 

I practice at 36 mph so it won't matter to me. However i am a competitor and I don't see how me running 2@39. Should best a guy that ran 1@41.

 

The world record at 36 is 2.5@43. No one at 34 has run 2.5@45 off.

 

If I elect to ski @36 I don't deserve 6 buoys

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I think ZBS below max speed is a good thing. My son is a boys 3 skier in his last year who had a bad concussion going out the front at 22/36 in his first year as a B3 skier. Since then because of lacrosse schedules he hasn't skied much and has mostly skied at 34 mph. He may be able to fit a tournament or two in this year but would likely stay at 34.

 

I think it also has merit in other divisions. I am recovering from an illness and unlikely to be at full strength during tournament season. hopefully I will be able to run some passes at 30 mph. I do love the tournament scene here and would likely enter 1 or 2 if I can run a few passes and it would be nice to have ZBS in place.

 

I do think for high end M3 and M4 skiers ZBS scoring gets tricky and confusing and that an event like nationals should have everyone skiing at the same max speed.

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I just want to see someone attempt anything shorter than 38 off at 15.5MPH, LOL!

 

Since the chart stops at 36MPH/58KPH that is the intended max speed for the event. Funny, I guess with this rule change, they forgot to simply say this: The maximum boat speed for any division shall not exceed 36MPH/58KPH. I bet they also need to decide if they want to limit women divisions to 34 or allow them to also ski 36. Probably just gaps in the implementation of the new idea in harmony with the existing rules.

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Allowing skiers to shorten the rope rather than ski at max speed makes great sense to me, in all except elite divisions. I think this can only help increase interest in tournament participation. Encouraging skiers (or allowing) to ski above the max speed for their age group or elite division makes no sense to me, as I see the potential increase of unnecessary serious injuries. @JeffSurdej your thoughts would be appreciated.
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It seems that most people are in agreement with ZBS and not requiring skiers to go max speed. There is no reason we would need two scoring charts or two ranking lists. The issue is whether or not you should be allowed to increase speed beyond the current maximums. I don't really think we'll know for sure how the speed increase option will affect anything unless we try it for a year and see how many people truly opt up in speed. My thought is that if you're capable of skiing 36 mph at ultra-short line lengths then you're probably the better skier and deserve to win your division. If you're a grown man, a fall at 36 mph vs 34 mph isn't going to make a difference. In some cases it will be better and others it will be worse, so I don't really buy the safety argument.
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Confusing for the general spectator??..heck ya!! Jus announcing in line off loses them in minutes or less. But this..this is confusing for the skier. It may not affect 90% of the skiers out there but it sure will be hard to tell who is truly where in the rankings as there will be no indication of taking advantage of the rule vs not. If I'm reading this correctly, I could be higher ranked then @OB1 (that's gonna happen) as I took advantage of the rule change but he would actually be ranked higher (not taking advantage) if the playing field stayed the same with no rule change. How are we supposed to know how that score was obtained? Maybe I'm over simplifying this and it did go over my head....how many others will be totally lost in this any given weekend at a class C tournament? If it can help new or young skiers, injured returning skiers, aging skiers, I'm all for it. Other then that, posts here make it sound like a cluster...
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@Chad_Scott so that would be the same score as 3 at 43 @ 36mph or 6 at 43 off @ 35 mph?

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One potential way to solve the "6 buoy handicap" issue is to make all the divisions similar to IWWF (35+, 45+, etc). Then keep the max speed in the division as-is. Therefore a skier that wants to ski faster than their (actual) division max would need to slide down a division to ski faster (i.e. - compete with everyone else skiing at the same max speed).

 

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@klindy I think that is THE way to do it. If some old dude wants to ski 36, then I think it's silly for us to stop him. But it doesn't make sense for him to compete with skiers at a max speed of 34.

 

Note for those quoting any sort of buoy difference: It's not that simple. At longer line lengths, the "equivalent" pass at 34 is easier. For example, 34/-22 is easier than 36/-15. As you get into shorter lines, they get pretty similar -- e.g. 34/-35 and 36/-32 are of very similar difficulty. And then when it gets super-short, the equivalent (in ZBS) 36 pass is easier than the 34 -- e.g. 36/-39 is easier than 34/-41 (both are hilariously impossible to me, but I have heard this from many reliable sources).

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In M4 (45-52) there are 160 L7 and L8 skiers (3.5@-32 to 3.5@-39)

In M5 (53-59) there are 194 L7 and L8 skiers (3.5@-32 to 3.5@-39)

Each of these groupings independently is larger than most other divisions total number.

All these guys are going to feel competitive pressure to go 36. I am starting my second year in M5 with a 97.33 average. I and my friends are in the heart of this group. I and the friends I have talked to about it feel we need to go 36 or will be outscored by those that do. I have been skiing 36 now. But none really wants to go 36. We all think we will lose a good number of L7, L8 skiers who won't take the jump but get trounced by those that do.

There are a lot of scenario's where ZBS may be good but each one only affects a handful of people. In M4-M5 alone affects far more skiers and in a negative way. As far as membership goes, this will be a net negative.

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Cheat sheet for ZBS, informative little document I came across.

 

Question: What is the advantage or disadvantage to this?

Answer: This depends on the skier; some skiers may enjoy shortening the rope before going faster or some skiers may want to ski at faster speeds and get credit. Slalom is now all about total buoys regardless of how you achieve them.

 

Question: Can I do this at Regionals and Nationals?

Answer: Yes ZBS is how all skiers will be scored in all classes of events.

 

Question: What about records?

Answer: The age division maximum speeds shall be retained for National Records, Men 3-6 (34.2mph-55kph, Men 7 (32.3mph-52kph), Men 8-10 (30.4mph-49kph), Men 11 (28.6mph- 46kph), Women 5-6 (32.3-52kph), Women 7-10 (30.4-49kph) and Women 11 (28.6-46kph). Regional and Area records will still remain up to those areas.

 

Interesting that "Slalom is now all about total buoys regardless of how you achieve them" and Regionals and Nationals can be won with the new max speed, but a record can not be set? Bit of a disconnect. Someone could win Nat's with a new all time buoy count and it wouldn't be a record? Huh.

 

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@Chad_Scott,

 

Tournament PB = 5@28 off at 36, 3@32 off at 34.

 

Practice = 4@32 off at 36, 2@35 off at 34.

 

My reasons are purely for personal achievement and goals I set for myself. I fall into the bucket that was described earlier in this thread, as I entered tournament skiing at 45 years old. I learned the course at 25 and skied a little on a river course in my early 30s and didn't do anything serious again until I was 42.

The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.

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I still think the ability to exceed speed will force the hand at the top end of M3+. Many of them can ski within 6 buoys of themselves between the speed which mean at a 6 buoy handicap they generate a gain over their 34 score. Max speeds should be upheld but if you like 36 you should be able to either ski it with no credit like you can now or opt into a lower division, likely M2, to compete against skiers your speed. You should not be able to opt down to B3 by the way, I know they go 36 but where is the sport in beating a 14 year old and do you honestly think you would out live the ridicule that would come from being beat by a 14 year old?
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With the new rules it is fair. Anyone can ski 36, so if you choose not to and another guy does, that is your choice. Also, I don't think @miskier's scores are the norm.

 

To @RazorRoss3's point, it probably will, in M3. Is it really a bad thing though? A guy in M2 could be really good at 34 and win nationals at a slower speed, isn't that the same as a M3 guy winning at 36? I still don't see the older guys going 36 and winning, but if they do, great. We are getting stuck on going faster but there is some argument that could be made for going slower and winning, especially in a division like M2 (I use this because the scores to win are normally around 2@39 and 2@4-34 is completely achievable for a high end M2 skier).

 

In the end, like I have expressed before, we have to try something to know if it will work. If it fails and all the champions at nationals are skiing 36 and people are getting hurt, then we will know something needs to change but until then we cannot be certain. The only data we have is from many posts ago comparing L8 guys moving from M2 to M3, and that data doesn't really support the argument for repealing ZBS.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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