Friday, 9 January 2009

Three Protest in the VOR 2008-2009 |3

An official decision is published on the VOR notice board about the protest from RMG against Ericsson 4:

As you perhaps already have read in Scuttlebutt, VOR-website or elsewhere, the protest was dismissed.
The final (and only) issue decided by the jury was if E4 should have informed the Measurer of the change.
They looked at the class-rules for that and decided there was no such an obligation, hence the dismissal.

Interesting in this process is the fact that other issues - some of them mentioned in the original protest - where not considered. For instance the fact that the overall length of the boat was 2 mm to long (21,502 m1 instead of 21.500 m1) when the replacement screw on the bow was measured. Nor the fact that it was placed a little lower then the original. This illustrates that in a written protest only those issues are decided that are introduced by the protesting party.

If you write a protest claiming that someone broke a rule during a mark rounding and in the subsequent hearing it becomes clear that the boat also broke a measurement rule, that last issue is not decided. You could then protest (again) for breaking a measurement rule and then it would be considered (provided the protest was found valid), but not in the first hearing.

This practice is indirectly the consequence of rule 61.2(b) which states that the incident must be identified.
If you don't mention it in your protest, you can't use it. There is a little leeway. If the incident is about rules of part 2, say at a mark rounding, it does not matter if you use the wrong rule. If at that incident any row rule is broken by any boat, it will be decided upon by the PC. But it must happen during that incident. Not something before or after.

But in measurement issues this principle is much more strictly adhered to. If you don't tell the committee what specifically is wrong with a boat, you will not get a protest hearing. Generally stating that a boat is not complying with the class rules and not tell specifically what is wrong, will result in an invalid protest.
Once you've stated the issue, you then cannot - during the hearing - claim the other also has something else wrong with his/her boat.

Because the RMG wanted the protest only to cover that specific premise - boats should inform the RC about any changes - the jury didn't come to a decision about the other issues.

The last protest - against E3 about sailing into an exclusion zone - is also decided: E3 was penalized with one point deduction. No official paper is published as of yet. You can however get a glimpse of the jury workings on this protest at : Volvo Ocean Race TV

Update 14:20 hours
The second decision is now also published:

Again the issue what the specific protest is about, is a subject of discussion:
From the facts found:
3. At the commencement of the hearing it became apparent that the claim in the original protest (that E3 failed to round the virtual mark ‘Sri Lanka 1’ on the southern side) was replaced by a claim that E3 had, after passing Sri Lanka 1 to port, entered the exclusion zone to the north of the line extending east of Sri Lanka 1.
4. Aksel Magdahl, representing E3, accepted the Jury’s suggestion that the hearing could proceed without the formal need for the Jury to initiate a new hearing.

Which once more goes to show that you better get your facts in order before you write the protest.



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