Bias at the start & finish lines
From an apparently good start, I get a pretty unpredictable position as I
round the windward mark. Unpredictable in the sense that I've no real idea
whether I'm going to round in first place (it happens, er, occasionally) or in
last place (it, um, also happens...). So I started to mess around with some
diagrams and so-called city block metrics.
Here we have a nice long start line. To make it all simple, we'll ignore any
other boats, the windward mark isn't too far away, the wind is blowing exactly
perpendicular to the line, the wind is rock steady, and the line isn't offset to
one side or the other. So should we start at position A, B, or C? Put it another
way, which boat will get to the mark first? It is pretty clear that boats A and
B are equally far away from the mark, and boat C is closest; but make your guess
and then check it out here.