One of the side effects of my blogging I hadn't anticipated, occurred last month. I was approached by the publishers of Bryan Willis' book: 2009-2012 Rules in Practice. If I wanted to review the new book and if I knew more sites and blogs about the rules, who might do likewise?
Am I becoming an authority? I didn't set out to, but perhaps that's kidding myself. I have put myself "out there". Give opinions here and on forums etc.... Anyway, here's my view on Bryan's new book:
This is a book written for sailors.
You'll find from pre-start to start, from the beat to the run and from mark roundings to finish, practical situations where boats meet and were rules have to be applied.
Written under the new rules 2009-2012 with all the changes, gross and subtle explained. With the complete new RRS as published by ISAF.
I have always bought this book in the past, because it gives you a good idea about the essential issue in each situation. Something you need to know each time you encounter another boat. What are my rights? Do I have to keep clear or only watch for rule 14? What are my obligations and restrictions? Can I gain or do I need to make sure I don't lose. Each situation is written from the viewpoint of the boats involved. Both from the right of way boat's and from the keep clear boat's point of view.
Nevertheless it is also a book for protest committee members and judges.
Because you can compare the facts found in the protest with the situations in the book and find out if you've thought about all the rules involved. Also, knowing the essential issue in a situation, lets you focus your questions and come to the point quicker. This means shorter protest hearings and less waiting for competitors.
Bryan Willes has written in his introduction something a wholeheartedly agree with:
" What you need to know out there on the water are your rights and your obligations; what you are allowed to do, and what you must and mustn't do. You need to know them automatically and subconsciously, so that you can concentrate on manoeuvring and sailing fast, to exploit the situation to the full. It is just as satisfying to come away from a mark in the lead having approached it in second place as it is to spend twenty minutes overhauling your rival with superior boat speed. Conversely, there is no satisfaction in sailing faster than everyone else on a leg if you throw away your position through being uncertain about your rights and obligations when you come to round the mark. "
If you want to have a look at this book, got to http://www.wileynautical.com/rules.html, where you will be able to read a sample chapter and have a look at the pictures.
Those pictures might need some getting used to. Al new, colorful Three-Dee boats with helmsmen and all. Perhaps a little over the top?
All in all a very good book to get to know the rules. For new sailors just starting out at their first regatta and for old hands who need to know what has changed in this rule cycle.
If Wiley Nautical had not send it to me, I have no doubt I would have purchased it again!