16 October 2011
IPSC Worldshoot XVI Rhodes - wrap up
From sport point of view it was, if we insist to think that Level V World Championship must be something so much better that Level I in neighbour region, just disaster. Dull stages, designed against IPSC rules, with lack of experience needed to know what will work and what will not. This stages were then accepted by... by who? Then those were run inconsistently between pre-match and main match, with changes to equipment and stage execution between days. "Load and Make Ready, while range crew were still working on stage is nice joke... if it would be joke. "It was not arbitrated, so it did not happen". All right. It should not happen, but conjuring reality will not help.
Then complete lack of communication to shooters, about ever changing event dates, etc. Putting small card pinned to board in hotel lobby is good for sales representative meetings. This was event for over 1000 sportsmen, with most of them based far away from this hotel. But official WSH web page was not updated with this info, in fact it would be better that no info was posted at all, instead of misleading one. All this praised IPSC websites all over most fashionable places were not helpful at all. But maybe this event was not for athletes but for spectators, that were to get live results and on-line streaming video from match?
No. It was not for those at "peanut gallery", as called by one of IPSC executives. Results were far from live and streaming video far from on-line or even usable. Looks like appointing media, communications, internet or whatever manager is not enough. But this finally started to work...
For Award Ceremony. And there were when understanding struck me like lightning. This event was not for ROs, who were building stages to be able to shoot pre-match, not for athletes coming from all over the world, not for other following the match from all the world, not even for this Russian girl who cried listening to national anthem of her country. No. All this was for those who were honoured in first place, but medals, diplomas, an gifts... For IPSC executives, that all could watch by now working streaming video, passing each other congratulations and medals for this enormous success. For their hard work on constant messing with rules, so people do not know what and how they will shoot next year. For pushing on for important safety issue, while you do not follow basic safety rules yourself. That we all gathered in hotel corridor, could watch on big screens (but not hear due to terrible sound), over some appetizers, that posed as main dish. Congratulations, gentleman of your good mood, self confidence and arrogance toward everyone who shows that IPSC is eating own tail. Fish rots from the head. How true.
So, was it worth. For sure for those tha went out with "World Champions" title. But are they really feel like World Champions? Only they can tell, and I doubt they will - part of the deal. Worth for other? I do not know. For some surely beautiful landscape and good weather can make up for lot. For me? I still think that is from shooting point of view, it is better to visit 3 times good and well organized and run by experienced people Level III match, like Extreme Euro Open or even become vice-champion on local community, but on good fairly run match, that is equal test for all competitors. Maybe EHC2010 in Belgrade set my expectations too high? But EHC2007 in France set those high as well. Would I came again for this match? No. For me, very average shooter who wanted unforgettable experience just waste of money and time. But surely unforgettable experience, just not in way I expected.
But look on bright side - I'm probably only one of 1300+ shooters that did not like the match. Pure statistics says someone has to :)