No one misses out you can still turn up to a shoot without booking in online. What you cant guarantee is which session. But if you ask nicely some circumstances you can ask to put you into a squad.
The pre booking is for a number of reasons
1. Just to check that a resonable amount of people intend to turn up to make the competition viable.
2. To make stats that much easier that the majority of work is done before the first person turns up.
What i expected was to have 10% cancel/ missing so i made sure i was about 10% over subscribed i was running on lanes E,F,G going into filling out the cards 4 days before the shoot then went through the cancels and on the day with 5 no shows ended up on ABC which was a doddle.
I think Rob opening them 4 weeks before is ok.
We do know when the GPs are 3+ months ago and we all know booking on line will open 4 weeks before so why the difficulty.
Pre payment has been banded about but its a bit of minefield to sort with those not liking paypal and data protection with bank cards etc etc