I'm definitely going to side with SSPey and Simon on this.
With the poke, it essentially becomes a switch cast competition. There are other competitions for this. In the rules and planning for SOR 2007, there was text regarding a more substantial barrer behind the caster potentially making a long belly poke less practical, so it seems that GGACC may have already intended to discourage the poke.
I don't see the poke as similar to a double spey, or a snap-T. The poke specifically aligns the line with the casting target, setting the caster up for a proper 180 degree D/V-loop. The double and snap don't do that, they merely set the anchor, not align the whole line.
This setting up for a 180 D-loop is, IMO, the great benefit of the poke. And, in that, it converts a change-of-direction cast into a cast that is not much different than a switch cast. As I stated, there are other great competitions for switch casts. At SOR 2007 I heard that the international casters value SOR for its great challenge: casting nearly waist-deep in the water, minimum room for the D-loop, and the significant change of direction. To eliminate the change-of-direction challenge devalues SOR, in my opinion. I think it will be a great event regardless, because of the club and the participants, but the casting is less challenging with the poke.
P.S. We already have SOR 2008 on the calendar. The rules won't affect our (or at least my kids') hopeful participation in this great, challenging, and fun event, but they could change how we practice.
Last edited by SparseHairHackl; 06-13-2007 at 02:44 PM.