RRS 2013-2016 SIs

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(Updated January 2013)

There are some significant changes in Appendix E, and it requires at least two or three Sailing Instructions to fix both the problems which remain and the problems which have been introduced.  These are some suggestions.

Replace E4.3(b) by, “(b) if the boat gains a significant advantage in the heat or race by her breach despite taking a penalty, the boat shall take one or more additional One-Turn Penalties until the significant advantage is extinguished."

Discussion. As currently written, E4.3(b) seems to allow a boat which gained a significant advantage to exonerate herself by taking an additional penalty turn. This was not the intention; instead, the intention was that a boat which gains a significant advantage by breaking a rule should be required to take as many additional penalty turns as may be needed until that advantage disappears.  I understand that the Chair of the RYA Racing Rules Committee is arranging for an ISAF Q&A to be published to clarify the rule. Whilst these Q&As are not mandatory, they do provide very strong guidance on rule interpretations to competitors and officials.

Add before paragraph (a) of E8, “Rule E8 applies to sails measured after 31 December 2012. Sails whose date of last measurement is before 1 January 2013 may conform to the rules applicable at the time of measurement.”

Discussion. The changes to the sail numbering rules introduced by E8 are far-reaching, and many already-measured sails would not be able to be brought into compliance without significant damage. This SI grandfathers old sails.

Replace E8(b)(3) with, “A single-digit number shall be prefixed with a ‘0’”. Delete E8(b)(4). Add to E8(b)(5), “A sail number with ‘0’ as its prefix shall not have ‘0’ as a second prefix.”

Discussion. There is a significant change to the required hail of a sail number, as specified in E2.1(b), where a sail number shall be hailed as a sequence of digits. The problem comes when the start line judge hails, “Recall one, nine, five”. Which boats have been recalled? Two boats, 19 and 5? Two boats, 1 and 95? Three boats, 1, 9, and 5? Or one boat, 195? Until we have a better solution, sail numbers comprising two digits should continue to be the norm, and ‘0’ placed in front of single-digit numbers.

Add to E6.3, “or words to that effect which shall include the word ‘protest’ or its declensions and conjugations.”

Discussion. This continues to be a SI required for anyone who might consider a hail such as, “44 protests 95” to be invalid under E6.3.

RRS G3 is made applicable. A boat chartered or loaned may carry national letters or a sail number in contravention of her Class Rules. Where there is any conflict in sail numbers, the race committee shall prescribe that sail numbers be amended until the conflict is resolved.

Discussion. This continues to be a SI required in case of conflict with a chartered or loaned boat.

Add to E3.4, “A boat shall not be launched or released for the first time after the first boat finishes in the heat in which she is scheduled to sail.”

Discussion. This is a SI that ensures a heat or race is not unreasonably prolonged.

Add to E3.4, “A boat scheduled to race in a heat shall not be launched, relaunched, or released between the preparatory and starting signals.”

Discussion. This is an optional SI, but is recommended for any Race Committee which might be concerned about fairness arising from issues such as a start line very close to the launching area, or where there may be a weed problem on the course.

Add E6.10, “A boat that acknowledges breaking a rule of Part 2, 3 or 4 before the protest is found to be valid may retire from the relevant heat without further penalty.”

Discussion. This is an optional SI, but may be considered desirable by an Organising Committee which might be concerned with minimising the number of protests which go to full hearings, or with encouraging a boat to accept responsibility for a rule breach.

Add to E4.2(b), “or help from the safety boat”.

Discussion. This is an optional SI, but may be considered desirable by an Organising Committee for club events. It is not a recommended SI for regional or national events, as explained by the ISAF RRC Chairman: “If help from a safety boat is allowed this will often favour some boats and disadvantage others dependant solely on the proximity of the safety boat at the time. Radio controlled boats are relatively light and easily disturbed by the wash of a safety boat. Eliminating the urgency of re-establishing entangled boats back in a race would reduce the speed of safety boats and thus ensure less wash to impede boats still racing. It will be fairer to all competitors if help from a safety boat is not permitted.”

Rule J2.1(4) is deleted. A course board showing the course, and the limits of the control area and launching area(s) if appropriate, shall be located next to or within the control area with information clearly visible to competitors while racing.

Discussion. This is needed because the rule requiring a course board has been deleted from Appendix E for 2013-2016.

Replace E3.8(a) with, “(a) Rule 33 is deleted.”

Discussion. There is no need to delete Rule 30.2, it is an option available to a Race Officer, and could see more use in Radio Sailing than it does. If it is to be used, though, a number of additional SIs are required to enable it for radio sailing, as follows:

a In Rule 30.2, add: “If a boat again breaks this rule in any subsequent restarts of the same heat, her penalties shall be accumulated.”

b In Rule 44.3(c), change “the number shall be the whole number (rounding 0.5 upward) nearest to 20% of the number of boats entered” to “the number shall be the first whole number larger than 20% of the number of boats scheduled to sail in that heat”.

c In HMS, add:  “A boat recorded as ZFP shall have her finishing place changed so that she is placed according to her score immediately after any boat(s) with the same score.”

d In HMS, add:  “A boat penalized under Rule 30.2 or 44.3 shall be scored points as provided in Rule 44.3(c).”



©2011 Lester Gilbert