Saturday, 13 February 2010

AC33 | America's Cup Umpiring (2)

I heard back from Bill Edgerton, CU at the AC33 in Valencia. He found time to answer the questions I send him earlier. (See America's Cup Umpiring (1))

As before his answers in blue (a little darker so it's also readable on a white background)

What calls did you make in the first match? Can you tell us about the situations you encountered?
The penalty was a simple port and starboard going 13.1, no 16 involved and the give way boat turned across the ROW boat. She had 2 avenues of escape, took the wrong one, if they had gone down, 16 would have applied to USA's course alteration to follow and the call would have gone green.
(red: 13.1 = keeping clear while tacking, from App C; Match Racing)
Judging 2 boat lengths separation for 17 or not, after the start when they were straight lining, was difficult, but unless it was USA to leeward, it was only academic in those conditions.

(red: for those of you who don't speak umpire speak: Rule 17 restricts the leeward boat from sailing above her proper course (after the start-signal) if she established a leeward overlap within two hull lengths of the windward boat. Bill is explaining he found it difficult to judge a distance of 200 feet accurately - which is completely understandable, in my opinion)

Are you planning to change the system now you've umpired the first match?
No, just rotate the personnel a little and refine some of the communications with the RC, especially the penalty taking where the RC came over our radio transmission inadvertently.

Will the team record and document all calls? If so, will these be published?
What you got above will be the sole extent probably, unless there is something of interest, a learning point.

What strikes you as the biggest difference between AC33 and AC32 - from an umpire point of view?
The boats, obviously. The atmosphere is very different, for instance they don't have joint press conference. But our relationship with the sailors though, is as good always. 
The delays between races mean more careful management of the team to make sure cabin fever doesn't strike, though the team we have here, is very experienced and time management is one of the skills you develop.

After match 1, I came up with some additional question and send them off in an Email. Hopefully Bill will find some time in answering them. Here's what I wrote:

Many thanks Bill, 

Any chance of an updated picture with Graig in the frame? It was him that umpired yesterday, was it not?

I heard some comments on the broadcast about you changing the decision process after a call?
Taking more time to get consensus? Can you tell me anything about that?

Did you change 17 overlap with only the hulls or is the bowsprit the complicating factor?

How are the umpire boats? Yesterday was only between 4-10 knots and you seemed to be going flat out at times.

Will you be able to keep up when it's blowing 16 knots?

I've analysed your call yesterday by the published pictures and put them on the blog It seems to be complying with your answer, but if you have any comments, please send them.

SUI lost five minutes at the finish after completing the penalty. The commentators and journalist all seem to have different answers as to why.

Can you enlighten me? What happened?

Good luck Sunday!
And my regards to your team.
Thanks again .

If you have additional questions- be quick - it all could be over tomorrow!
(Sunday February 14th)


1 comment:

  1. I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.


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