Yesterday, at the Heiner Team Racing Winter series final, I had a conversation with the other umpires about ‘the zone’, specifically when boats of different length are rounding the same mark.
Lots of events locally are multiclass events were this can happen. Now, this is not something new, it happened just as frequently under the 2005-2008 RSS. But because the sharp ‘border’ at which rule 18 switches on and because the zone has become bigger, it might be more of an issue.
This is the situation and questions we asked ourselves:
Yellow is a 8 meter Regenboog and Blue is an Optimist, sailing toward a leeward rounding mark to be left at port. The Optimist is closest to the mark when she reaches the zone of the Regenboog. By the time the Optimist has almost reached her zone, the Regenboog as overtaken her and enters that zone first.
If any, which boat has mark-room and from where? Which rules apply? Which zone applies and why? Has any boat broken a rule? Anyway, you get the drift, a purely hypothetical case.
We did come up with an answer, but I’m not going to tell you. Please consider this in your own time and leave a comment. After a couple of days I’ll do the same or post our answer in a blogpost.