TCA 2023 Mid-Winters Governing Board Meeting Minutes

Governing Board Minutes Ft. Walton Beach MWE

                                                         Thursday, March 2, 2023



  • Meeting called to order at 7:07 P.M. (CST) by President John Howell
  • Roll Call: 20 voting members – A Quorum is present

Present: John Howell, Nicole Shedden, Warren Duckworth, Aaron Holland, Wayne Pignolet, Tom Hubbell (6 votes)

Secretary: Dianne Duckworth

Treasurer: Sarah Paisley, absent


Regional Vice Presents: Craig Koschalk GL, Tommy Glen SE    On Zoom:  Jenny Borshoff PC     (3 votes)

Absent RVP: Dave Hanson AC, Blair Dryden MA


District Governors: Paul Abdullah FL, Doug Kitchin NJ,      On Zoom: Michael Poltorak SCAL, Paul Cone PNW, Scott Meyer NF, (5 votes)


Present By Proxy: Kevin Arrow LM- proxy to Warren Duckworth, Diana Young-Pavia C-proxy to Howard Mendlovitz, Adam Young SA- proxy to Tommy Glenn, Timothy Vining LE- proxy to Corrine Sackett, Dan Clark NCAL- proxy to Mike Gillum (Zoom), Scott Vogel NE-proxy to Scott Pakenham (6 Votes)

Absent: Tom Lawton LIS, Blair Dryden MA, John Gilmour CA, Mark Udell MICH


TCA Members Present: John Duckworth, Tory Gibb, Ed John, Lloyd Kitchin, Conor Rupen, Bobby Sessions, John Yingling,

Sergio Rosa, Howard Mendlovitz, Corrine Sackett, Mike Gillum (Zoom), Scott Pakenham


  • May, Sunday, 15, 2022 minutes: Approved
  • Report of Officers
    1. Secretary’s Report: Dianne Duckworth
      1. Membership: January 2023: 300 memberships; February 2023 membership: 420. (+120)
      2. Sent out cancellation chart of reasons why past members left TCA.
  • Thank you’s have been sent out to all donations to date.
  1. REGISTERED Boats are now on Clubspot.
  1. Treasurer’s Report: Delivered by John Howell
    1. January Balance Sheet 2023: Total Balance (Total Assets): 67,915.47, Operating Balance (PNC Operating): 34,427.49 and Growth & Promotion Balance (PNC Balance): 39,725.33
    2. January P&L 2023: Total Income $22,827.20 & Total Expenses-$10,653.07: Net Operating Income, $ 12,174.13 and Net Income, $ 12,174.13
  • $7,000.00 budget deficit: Dianne Duckworth to send out electronic copies to GB.
  1. President’s Report: John Howell
    1. Women’s and Jr’s Nationals: Recommendation is to have these regattas with the National Championship when Nationals is out West and to make the determination of with or separate when Nationals is in the other regions. Women’s and Junior Nationals don’t have to be at the same time and place.
    2. Strategy Development: Thistle Class 2030 Vision and Goals
      1. Vision: By 2030, the Thistle Class will be the strongest one-design centerboard class in the USA, appealing to juniors, young adults, young families, and mature sailors alike.
      2. Thistle Class Strategic Projects: High priority projects and additional projects identified
  • Formed Nationals Duration Committee: to discuss improvements for Thistle Nationals
    1. Committee members: Committee Chair, Aaron Holland, Dan Hesse, Ian Hunter, Darby Reddaway, Joy Martin, and Tom Lawton
    2. Expect recommendations in November 2023
  1. Formed Nationals President’s Scoring Committee
    1. Committee Chair, Doug Kitchin, Paul Abdullah, Tommy Glenn, Mike Poltorak, and Dan Russell
    2. Proposal to vote on tonight on their recommendations
  2. Appointed NRC for 2023 Nationals at Flat Head Lake: Chair: Jesse Shedden, Jenny Borshoff (RVP), Paul Cone (DG), Doug Kitchin, and Phil Healy Local Rep)
  3. Appointed Nominating Committee: Tom Hubbell (Chair), Dave Hudson, Greg Griffin, and Mike Poltorak
  • Appointed Amendment Chair: Scott Griffin
  1. First VP’s Report: Nicole Shedden
    1. Interdistricts
      1. Worked to keep Blue Chevron regattas from scheduling on the same dates, successful.
      2. Will continue to keep these events on different dates every year.
    2. Nationals
      1. Flathead 2023
        1. Eighty-nine registered (fully paid); two registered unpaid.
        2. Need to compare registration list to membership list, especially if there’s a wait list.
        3. Last day to get a full refund is June 1; that’s also the day that the late registration fee goes into effect.
        4. Weekend schedule change: practice race Saturday afternoon, Women’s/Junior Nationals Sunday 8am: races change to give Women’s and Jr’s the best time for wind.
      2. Future Nationals: working with Atlantic Coast RVP and DGs to look for more east coast venues; will do the same with other regions.
  • Trophies
    1. Trophies finally ordered for National’s 2022. Winners will be notified.
    2. Members, please be careful taking perpetual trophies to engravers. Some trophies have been lost, so just take the plaque to be engraved.
  1. Second VP’s Report: Warren Duckworth
    1. Bagpipe
      1. Feb/Mar/Apr has been sent out.
      2. April 1st is the next deadline to John Duckworth for publication May/June/July Issue 3
    2. Website
      1. Regatta postings is at 20 and going well.
      2. Pierce Barden is now the Marketplace Monitor
  • Google Groups
    1. Has 506 members and discussions been going well
    2. Thistle Class survey URL to be posted to GG for survey on “Why do you like Thistle sailing?” Looking for testimonials to update the website.
  1. Third VP’s Report: Aaron Holland
    1. Waiting to hear legal issues for the proposal of child care at events to be supported with G&P funds
    2. Working on an Event Planning Guide for regattas to make it easier and more uniform for event planners.
  • Gathering information on the 26-year-old and under group
  1. TCA paid for all registrations at 2022 Junior Nationals, including all crew members
  2. Working with Juniors for Nationals 2023 to get them refunds on registration.
  1. Chief Measurer’s Report: Wayne Pignolet
    1. CM Goals
      1. Make the Thistle easier to sail
      2. Make the boat more durable
      3. Lower the cost of owning a boat
      4. All the above, while maintaining our one design ethos
    2. Amendments
      1. Jib wire – eliminate the jib luff wire which no longer serves any purpose
      2. Jib halyard – one the jib wire is gone can eliminate the restriction on jib halyard purchase. Will make it easier for the crew to adjust the jib halyard tension.
      3. A hiking line for forward crew so they can hike more easily
  • Proposal to clarify uses of electronics on the boat.

Existing rulings 65 and 74 are confusing. New ruling to clarify use of non-performance enhancing

electronic devices.

  1. Annual sail allocation:

Current process is not enforceable, sailmakers do not want to put delivery date on the sail and the process does not address how most people buy sails – they get the fall discount with delivery in the winter or spring of the next year. Proposing an amendment to clarify rule and make the allocation as of the date of invoice.

  1. Past President’s Report: Tom Hubbell
    1. Tom gave a presentation on Lake Chautauqua to be considered for a National’s venue 2024.
    2. Tom will have the proposal ready for a vote at the Flathead Lake Nationals in July
  • Ratification or Revocation of Charters
  • Ratification of Executive Committee Rulings
    1. Misconduct Policy
      1. This is a policy to help the class deal consistently with questionable conduct, standards with documentation
      2. To give GB more time to review policy, a vote will be taken later. John will resend policy to GB
    2. Motion made to renew the TCA Secretary and Treasurer
      1. Secretary: Dianne Duckworth – Motin Passed
      2. Treasurer: Sarah Paisley- Motion Passed
  • Unfinished Business
  • New Business: John Howell
    1. Approval of Strategic Plan: moved, seconded and approved (published on the TCA Website)
    2. Approval of Bylaw changes (Article VIII.8-9): Scoring President’s Division: moved, seconded, and approved  (see Attachment 1)
    3. Approval Bylaw Changes (Article XXI): Blue and Silver Chevrons Events: moved, seconded, and approved  (see Attachment 2)
      1. Consistent scoring for Blue and Silver Chevron events ratified, moved, seconded, and approved
      2. If participant is found to not have paid their TCA dues and/or does not have a valid Measurement Certificate they will be scored DNC.
    4. Approval of Bylaw Changes (Article XIV.17): Women’s Nationals: moved, seconded, and approved (see Attachment 3)
    5. Approval of Bylaw Changes (Article VIII.5, Article X.7):  Enforcement of membership and measurement requirements: moved, seconded, and approved (see Attachment 4)
    6. Approval of Permanent Variance for Thistle 53: moved, seconded, and approved 
      1. Carbon fiber was used to support the top of the bow tank.  The use of carbon does not stiffen the hull.  Motion to allow hull 53 to have a permanent variance accepting this selected use of carbon fiber.
    7. Allow CMR 65/74 replacement to be submitted on behalf of GB: moved, seconded, and approved
    8. Allow Specification XV Safety Requirement amendment to be submitted on behalf of the GB: moved, seconded, and approved


  • Adjourned: 9:44 PM (CST)





  1. Bordes System.
  2. The Bordes System shall be utilized when the fleet is divided into two divisions. The decision to race as one division or two is made by the National Race Committee based on the following criteria:
  • Fleet size 50 boats or less: sail as one division
  • Fleet size 81 or more boats: sail as two divisions
  • Fleet size greater than 50 but less than 81 boats: decision to sail as one or two fleets made by the National Race Committee based on local conditions and logistics.
  • Whenever possible, all boats should sail as one fleet
  • When the total fleet size is 40 or fewer boats, there will be no President’s Division and no President’s Division trophies will be presented.



  1. The Bordes System for two division sailing is administered as follows. After registration is closed, all entries will be divided into four groups (A, B, C, or D) in order to provide four groups of about equal racing ability. Using the results of the previous year’s National Championship as posted in the Bagpipe, all the current entries who participated in the Nationals of the previous year will be listed in order, according to their place in the final standings, from first to last.  The remaining entries will be added to this list, in order by boat number, from the lowest to the highest.  From the list developed, boats 1, 5, 9, etc. will be placed in Group A; boats 2, 6, 10, etc. in B; boats 3, 7, 11, etc. in C; and boats 4, 8, 12, etc. in Group D.
  2. Divisions.
    (a) When sailing under the Bordes System (two divisions), the composition of the Divisions in each

race of the National Championship will be:

First Race Division I, Groups A and B; Division II, Groups C and D

Second Race Division I, Groups A and C; Division II, Groups B and D

Third Race Division I, Groups B and C; Division II, Groups A and D

Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Races

Division I, the Championship Division, shall consist of the top half of the boats.   If the number of boats registered is uneven, then the Championship Division shall have one more boat than Division II, the President’s Division.



  1. Scoring. Scoring for the National Championship shall be as described in the current RRS “Low Point Scoring System” with these exceptions or provisions:

(a) When sailing as two fleets, with separate starts:

  • For boats in the Championship Division, the series score shall be the total of her race scores in the seven scheduled races.
  • Boats in the President’s Division series shall be scored for races four, five, six and seven, with scores from the qualifying series (first three races) excluded.

(b) When sailing as a single fleet on one starting line, the President’s Division will be established and scored by the following procedure:

(1) Races 1, 2 and 3: All boats start as one fleet. After race 3 the fleet shall be split in half, the

Championship Division and the President’s Division.

(2) Races 4 through the end of the regatta: All boats will start as one fleet and scored as follows 

  1. Championship Division:

Keeps points from races 1- 3

Awarded actual finish position points (including President’s Division boats).

Daily race trophies awarded for finishes in the Championship Division (disregarding

President’s Division individual finishes)

All races of the regatta are counted, including the positions of President’s Division boats.

Final standings trophies are awarded for Championship Division boats.

  1. President’s Division:

Keeps points from races 1- 3.

Awarded actual finish position points (including Championship division boats).

Daily race trophies awarded for finishes in the President’s Division (disregarding

Championship Division individual finishes)

All races of the regatta are counted, including the positions of Championship Division boats.

Final standings trophies are awarded for President’s Division boats.

If President’s Division boats qualify for a Championship Division trophy, they are eligible to receive both the Championship Division overall trophy and the President’s Division overall Trophy.

(c) Postings:

  • Championship Division: all races
  • President’s Division: as noted above
  • Total fleet: As a courtesy when racing as one fleet, the entire fleet will be ranked so that all boats can view their rank in the entire fleet. No trophies are awarded.


(d) DNS, DSQ, DNC and OCS shall be scored points of one more than the number of boats registered in that Division’s race, or the total number of boats when sailing as a single fleet.

(e) DNF, Retired and TLE are scored by adding the number of registered boats in that Division’s race (or the total number of boats, when sailing as a single fleet) to the number of finishers, then divided by 2 (any resulting fraction shall be rounded up to the nearest whole number).




Attachment 2:


Article XXI – Silver and Blue Chevron Events

  1. All regattas shall have a Class Representative, appointed by the RVP, who will represent the class in planning and coordinating the event, NOR and SI approval and PRO selection, scoring systems and other issues as they arise.
  2. Regatta Organizers shall appoint a Fleet Liaison who can represent the fleet in on-the-water discussions with the PRO before and after races.
  3. The TCA (Class Representative)  in conjunction with the Organizing Authority shall secure an experienced PRO for the event.
  4. Weather legs shall be .7 miles minimum (start line to weather mark) but may be adjusted by the Fleet Liaison.  Single lap WL and shortening course should only be used under extreme situations.
  5. All regattas shall use electronic registration systems.  Registration and NOR’s must be available at least 30 days prior to the event.





Attachment 3:


Gender Identity


Article XIV National Championship


  1. Women’s Nationals
  2. Qualification: The TCA Women’s Nationals is open to women skippers and crew. There are no age restrictions. A woman who will be under twenty-one (21) years of age throughout the entire event can elect to sail the Junior Nationals or the Women’s Nationals provided that her crew meets the same age requirements. Sailors competing in the event may self-identify and compete as the gender that they identify with in their “everyday life”. Waivers: It is required that all participants under the age of 18 have documented parental permission.





Attachment 4


Article VIII Notice to Owners

  1. The TCA Measurement Certificate shall be binding upon all organizations conducting races for the Thistle Class.

(a) A boat holding such a certificate shall not be subject to remeasurement on protest of

measurements unless there is reasonable evidence of alterations, erroneous measurements, or

falsified measurements.

(b) Protests of measurements of a certified Thistle sloop must include a fee plus measurement fee returnable only if sustained.

(c) A Thistle sloop is always subject to remeasurement by order of the Governing Board, National Race Committee, or the Chief Measurer.

(d) Any boat that competes in any race without a valid certificate of measurement shall be scored DNC.


Article X Other Racing Requirements and Restrictions

  1. Skipper eligibility: Skippers in fleet series and open races must be members of the TCA,  in good standing, except that a fleet may annually establish a policy permitting non-owners to compete during that year in races open only to fleet members. The intent of this exception is to encourage TCA membership by allowing interested sailors to race Thistles under local competitive conditions.  Otherwise, skippers who do not meet this requirement will be scored DNC in all races.






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