Answering a couple of questions from James Ricketts about hull and zone:
Q1) Is there a possible anomaly in the definitions?
- Starting, Finishing and Overlap definitions all refer to "hull and equipment in normal position" whereas the definition of Zone references "any part of hull". Is there a good reason why these aren't all aligned? It seems slightly unfair that an overtaking boat can establish rights (ie an overlap) with the end of its bow-sprit whilst a boat ahead has to sail 'further' (ie until the bow of the boat enters the zone) to deny/break such an overlap. -
A1) I think there are a couple of reasons why these are different, in my opinion.
At the zone you need to ‘guess’ when you enter. Something which is hard enough to do, even with a fixed measurement as a hull. But impossible if you add equipment like bowsprit or spinnaker into the mix. If for instance a boat with an extended bowsprit enters the zone – measured with the sprit extended – and it then retracts its bowsprit, it would be outside the zone again. A boat is x meters long. Times three is xx meters. By using the hull (that never changes) you can learn to judge that distance.
Whereas starting and finishing are very specific timed moments which are not primarily judged by the crew but by the RC. For start and finish by the people on the line, who can perfectly judge if spinnaker of bowsprit cross a certain point. No doubt or guessing involved. Overlap is something which can change any moment and has an instant effect on the rules. There, a retraction of say a bowsprit, would simply put the trailing boat clear astern. OR – like in your example – extending the sprit create an instant overlap. That is not unfair because the clear ahead boat has the protection of rule 15. With a zone entrance such protection is not available.
In my opinion it is not an anomaly but purposely differently.
Q2) What constitutes the "hull" (as in hull-length)?
- This quite key concept does not appear to be defined. I assume it is the conventional definition of the "body" of a boat (ie the bit that makes it float!), but what about bow-sprits or transom-hung rudders, or yacht push-pits? Should this be clarified in the definitions or have I missed it somewhere? -
What constitutes a “hull” is defined in the ERS section D.
If the ERS have been validated in the Class-rules, the latter only give the measurements. Olympic classes have the ERS validated in the class rules and therefore the hull is defined, all be it through a series of documents.