Room The space a boat needs in the existing conditions while maneuvering promptly in a seamanlike way.
As definitions go, this one is perceived by most to make matters more complicated, instead of making things clear.However, because room is not a fixed 'quantity', the definition does need this. Room depends on a couple of conditions. Let's have a look at the three parts which define the space:
- existing conditions;
the waves, wind speed, the water (sheltered or open), but also type of boat; dinghy or yacht, centerboard or lee board. Any condition that influences the space.
- maneuvering promptly;
In the definition there's no regard for more or less competent sailors. Expected is an adequate skill to maneuver and competent crew. You can't claim more space because you are a beginner.
- seamanlike way;
with regard for safety of crew and boat; there should be no need to hit anything or the likelihood of damage to your boat or equipment. For instance if you luff a boat with spinnaker, it's is seamanlike to give that boat the opportunity to lower the spinnaker when you luff above half wind. Mind, you have to give the opportunity - wait a short time in your arc - but if the windward boat doesn't take it and does nothing, you then can go higher with the spinnaker still up.
In my experience Room at a Match Race is less than Room at a Fleet Race. Boats operate and maneuver closer together during, for instance, the pre-start.Room normally doesn't include room to tack or gybe. But that gets added when normal part of the maneuver rounding a mark. So room for the inside boat is more than room for a windward boat. One of the reasons that in the next rule cycle the definition "markroom" will be added to the rule book.