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What is a jester?

seedog

New member
Joined
18 Jul 2006
Messages
409
Location
Bristol
There have been a number of threads and numerous posts about what constitutes a Jester Challenge boat. Isn't the clue in the title, it does not say race it says challenge. It is a challenge for each individual skipper to take up and deal with in their own individual way. I have yet to make application to enter as I have a number of things to work out (SWMBO, work kids, dog etc) but since I can enter until the day before the start so what. Even if I don't enter I can still be at the start line and accompany the 'official' entries as can anyone else. My boat does conform to the 'class' but I would value and welcome the company of anyone else who wants to make the journey. I have had a hard time explaining to SWMBO that even if I step up from 22' to 35' I will still get wiped out if I don't pay attention to the super tankers and ferries. I know why the Jester came into being, in so much as the rules of the OSTAR excluded original race participants. I don't want to rock the boat but for me the Jester class has nothing to do with the size of the boat but is actually about the size of heart that undertakes a challenge that does not require a professional team to drag you around the course or mountain (as in Everest expeditions). If I undertake the challenge I know I won't 'win' but I will have won something for myself that no prize giving ceremony could ever give me.

Doug
 

joker2

New member
Joined
26 Sep 2007
Messages
9
Well said ...but this could be a trick question.....after all there are Jesters and "Real" Jesters...I mean what would you be if you were without a Junk rig and a Hasler vane?
 
G

Guest

Guest
What a good post .... I'm thinking you'll have spoken for quite a few people who couldn't put their gut feelings into words.

Although the Jester is a group affair, and even a highly public affair if some get their way (which I personally don't care for much), at it's core it can only ever be a very private and personal challenge. You're so right - 'Challenge' says it all.

Which is one reason why I have misgivings about the creation of a 'Jester' flag/pennant/burgee or whatever is being proposed. It could become a symbol flown for all the wrong reasons - machismo, a 'them and us' indicator, membership of an 'exclusive club', and so on ...
There are already enough tossers around flying symbols of their perceived one-upmanship - you know the kind of thing: blue ensigns, wearing red noses long after the charity event, etc.

My suggestion would be to keep the Jester Challenge a relatively low-profile affair - otherwise you'll risk generating that publicity which attracts sponsorship, which in turn will inevitably lead to the introduction of rules and hi-tech safety gizmos, which will eventually knacker the event. Just like it did before.

Colin
 

andlauer

New member
Joined
15 Mar 2007
Messages
310
Location
Paris France
Bonjour
I don't have a junk rig nor a winwane.
Perhaps I'm not a "real" Jester ?
Eric /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
 

joker2

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Joined
26 Sep 2007
Messages
9
OOHH yes you are Eric...you are a "true" Jester in every way....doing your own thing with style...there are many catagories of "Jester"....more in the mind than the "Boat"....so is a "Real Jester" the "Capt." rather than the boat....I think so.

The Jester Challenge will grow but will not change as long as the "Real Jesters" make the non-rules based on consensus.....and the publicity will follow, as it is the clarity of the event which is so mentally challenging to the masses. So what is wrong with inspiring others through the deeds of a Jester...many young people could do much worse than consider coming along for the ride and becoming a Jester.

I will be there in 2010 becuase of "The Jester"
 

Fascadale

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Joined
15 Jan 2007
Messages
1,372
Location
One end of the A1
From an as yet uncommitted but wantabe Jester

I too would worry about the publicity aspect. Publicity creates opportunities for advertising and therefore sponsorship, which in turn may lead to "elite" type entrants.

It is a paradox of the JC that there is nothing to prevent the sponsored elite from turning up on the day to grab a bit of camera time.

But then perhaps we would all be better off going sailing than sitting musing over these matters.

Tight lines

Paul
 

lyina

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Joined
8 Jan 2007
Messages
22
I have the greatest respect for the 'Jesters' and may even enter myself , but I don't think the event has enough Kudos to attract big sponsers. It is what it is because it of the type of people that enter it.
If the 'wrong' type enter with sponsorship and win, they will look like bullies. If they don't win they will look like fools.
 

Jacarah

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Joined
2 Aug 2007
Messages
9
SAE 140 is spot on.

I work in the “media” as a senior journalist. My advice would be AT ALL COSTS avoid publicity of the type you refer to. Avoid journalists, sponsorship - keep Jester out of the poplar media. Avoid personalities, rules and just leave quietly for the Azores/USA.

If the “media” get wind of it and you start looking for sponsorship, banners, emblems and flags the game is up. The media will take it over and the very thing that makes Jester what it is will be lost. Believe you me, this is one genie when out of the bottle, can’t ever be put back in. The difference between Jester and F1 motor racing is that Jester is fun, a personal challenge and the pleasure of sharing an experience with fellow singlehanders. Get the media involved and it becomes an ego trip with rules - and a race. It has to be for the media.

I would love to do the Jester Azores run next year, but if there’s going to be media coverage and sponsorship, I wouldn’t even bother turning up to see the start let along take part.
 
Joined
20 Jul 2001
Messages
205
Location
Southampton, UK
Hi Jacarah

Don't shut out the press completely. The Jester is a goldmine to PBO/YM readers. The wisdom and experience of sailors like Roger Taylor, Eric Andlauer, Pete Hill and Bill Churchouse (amongst others) is a constant source of inspiration to thousands, both here and abroad. Indeed, the swollen ranks of potential Jesters must be due in part to publicity spread through magazines and websites.

True, if events get too big, they can get hi-jacked. But in order to do the hi-jacking, you need to approach organisers and a committee, and then do deals. Jester is blissfully free of committees - and therefore internal politics - and those that do the non-organising will probably tell any sponsors where to go.

I've just been comparing the Jester with another event for small boats - the Atlantic Rowing Challenge. It is knee-deep in rules and regs, as it has a corporate organiser and bags of individual sponsorship. This is because it costs £15,000 just to enter, and that's before you've even bought the boat ( which, incidentally, is 3ft longer than mine.) You'll need another £60,000 minimum to get to the start line, and the compulsory shopping list is awesome. Can you really imagine Jester going that way?

Keep the press fully aware of why Jester does what it does, and they'll embrace it - especially when it is just about the last event you can take part in for free.

All the flags symbolise is that you are a kindred spirit, and want to recognise others. You're under no obligation to make yourself known, so you don't even have to fly it, but isn't that part of the fun?
 

andlauer

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Joined
15 Mar 2007
Messages
310
Location
Paris France
Bonjour
Press is like gulls, they need to be fed otherwise they turn there eyes somewhere else.
As there are no data to feed the press (no non-comittee sponsor (it's a non-rule) so there are no means to collect and prepare the data).
So, we are, I hope, quite protected against professionalism, sponsorship...
Additional reason : The raising class is the F40 (too big, hopefully...)
Eric /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
 

JunkMing

New member
Joined
12 Mar 2007
Messages
39
STOP PRESS!!

There has been a lot of discussion lately about sponsorship of the Jester Challenge. All too late! It’s not yet a ‘done deal’, but as long as you promise to keep it under your hats, I can announce that the Jester Sponsorship Sub-Committee (formed from Steering Committee Number Two) is on the verge of landing a stupendous £10 million (yes million!) deal with ‘Hello Sailor’ Magazine! We’re still thrashing it out, you know, throwing ideas around, trying to think outside the box, but the main points so far are:

1. The Jester Challenge will henceforth be known as the ‘Hello Jester’, or possibly the HELLOSTAR. Bit of work still to do on that one..!
2. All boat names will be prefaced with ‘Hello’ – Hello Sterenn, Hello Glayva, Hello Shanti, Hello Duckie etc.
3. Plans are already in hand for a bumper ‘Hello Jester’ edition of the magazine for May 2010. There are lots of scrumptious articles lined up that will really raise the Jesters’ profile to true celebrity status:
‘Le Boudoir Flottant’ - enigmatic, cool Frenchman Eric Andlauer shows you round his sumptuous sleeping arrangements…
‘Channel Chic – Life of a Roving Playboy’ – celebrity sailor and pin-up boy Bill Churchouse pictured aboard his palatial retro-styled Westerly 22 Belgean. This is one for the ladies if ever there was!
Centre Spread – Aussie twice-in-one-year hunk John Apps bares all! Eat your heart out Burt Reynolds!
‘In the Galley’ – Hello Jester Supremo Ewen Southby-Tailyour demonstrates his Ten Top Tips for preparing sardines and whisky. Could he be the new domestic goddess??
Human Interest Story – Hello Jester Roger Taylor makes a full and frank confession – ‘How Doing it Single-handed Ruined My Life!’ Not for the faint-hearted!

And if you think this is big – think again!! No names no pack drill, but your Committee, thinking ahead to the 2014 JC, has already opened a dialogue with a certain (very hush-hush this – promise not to tell!) Bxll Gxtxs (God I shouldn’t be telling you this, I’m going to get into big trouble but you know – Bxll G – he wants to get in and snap up the Jester sponsorship because he sees it as probably the biggest thing since Facebook and he should know!!)

So there you are! It really is all happening!
 

Jacarah

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Joined
2 Aug 2007
Messages
9
Jake,

I take what you say to heart and being an avid reader of the magazines you mention, I accept that the specialist press will probably follow it responsibly. But as I am a cynic through experience, I passionately believe you can't keep the general media "fully aware". They will invent their own version of the race. Believe me, I see and struggle against it every day. Keep it to the specialist magazines certainly but don't tell the rest. Don't draw attention to yourselves. That's my advice.

If I was a tabloid editor, found out about the Jester Challenge and, God forbid, there was a major incident or public rescue, I would go to town about crackpots, idiots and would-be Francis Chichesters (they wouldn't know who Hasler was) trying to cross the Atlantic in bath tubs.

I must admit that while I have been enjoying the contents and skirmishes of this forum, the one thing that immediately rang alarm bells with me was the sudden questioning over the need for media recognition and flags. The Jester Challenge is perfect fodder for the less responsible media attention. So a low profile would be best in my opinion.

You're quite right to say that many worthwhile events have been hijacked and are now out of the reach of those who participated for the spirit and challenge. I would imagine that in most cases, the rot began with a media interest.

Enough pessimism from me. Just thought it should be said.
 

Noddy

Member
Joined
22 Jun 2005
Messages
621
Location
Thames Estuary
I have quite enjoyed the recent kerfuffle in the TV media about whether or not they can be trusted:- Absolutely hilarious!

In every incident that I have been close to, that has made it into the national press, it has been sensationalised to the point where they are telling bare faced lies. By extension this means that the incidents I know nothing about, except by reading in the press, are most likely badly distorted in the name of increased sales.

Whats worse, is that there is no controlling them, they hound individuals and distort events on the pretext that the public have a right to know. This is now considered normal.

I say - Shoot the messenger!
 

Jacarah

New member
Joined
2 Aug 2007
Messages
9
EEk! Steady on! I am one of the messengers. It'll be the armoured-plated folkboat for me then.
 
Joined
20 Jul 2001
Messages
205
Location
Southampton, UK
Roger - what have you done? That was brilliant.

Your 'Hello Sailor' magazine idea has been seized upon by our marketing/development guru's. It's a dead cert! News is there's discussions over a culinary TV special spin-off 'cooking for singles.'

Apparently, Nigella Lawson is going to show Ewen how to pour whisky over his sardines. Then he's going to show her how to raise his gaff - all on prime time. Ratings will soar and sponsorship will flood in.

Jacaran - isn't your folkboat armour-plated already? We've just had a story about a steel yacht that hit one of five containers reported adrift in the Channel. It did an obscene amount of damage, but the boat stayed afloat (because it was steel) and limped back to port. After that, journo's pale into insignificance. (My Corri has a reinforced bow with a stainless steel 'container deflector' attached, just in case I find one too!)

Fear not - Jester is too low key, and too 'off the mainstream' to be hi-jacked by big sponsors. But I know where you're coming from, and agree with what you say. But the ARC has survived for years without 'gutter' media interest. That, of course, could change if Posh Spice joined the event and promptly dissappeared under a tanker.

'ARC enemy - posh squashed in Ocean' screams the Star. etc

Roger 'just call me Max Gifford' Taylor, there is a job waiting for you at head office. You were just MADE for magazine launches..
 

Jacarah

New member
Joined
2 Aug 2007
Messages
9
Had a brilliant idea. Get a container, make it buoyant and enter it. Can't be that hard as they all seem to float after they fall of a ship. What are the chances then of hitting another container?
 

Noddy

Member
Joined
22 Jun 2005
Messages
621
Location
Thames Estuary
OK, Maybe my reaction is a bit intense, but I don't often get anyone to shoot at over the media's shenanigans.

I'll cool my ardour - but I will be watching your spelling as well as your coverage!
 

PacketRat

New member
Joined
20 May 2007
Messages
170
Location
Merseyside
Flags or no flags, whether people call it a race, rally or challenge, the talismans for the Jester Challenge are Blondie Hasler and Jester herself (rebuilt or not). Whatever the press, sponsors or professional sailors get up to, Jester is the rallying point for a revival of transatlantic singlehanded sailing within reach of people who don't have sponsorship and couldn't afford entry fees. The future is more in the hands of Jester's owner and Jester participants than any journalist I would think.
Robin.
 
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