Almeria, day two, In-port racing.
Lots of breeze. lots of action, and .... a BIG communication problem.
Rule 20 - as a safety rule - dictates only two possible responses:
Either the hailed boat tacks or she signals "You tack". No ifs, buts or maybees.
It is bad enough that the Umpires miss the first initial hail for room to tack, but it equally as bad when they miss the "You tack" response. Decisions based on the lack of proper hand signalling will influence the race dramaticly!.
No signal for room to tack and rule 13 will be most likely be infringed.
Only luffing as a response to a hail, will earn you a penalty for infringing rule 20 because you haven't tacked as soon as possible
Not tacking after the hailed boat has responded, again is a rule 20 infringement.
We can definitely say that the communication is the key issue in all these situations
How can we improve that?
We are discussing additional flags, but until now can't agree on that.
It should be one person - the helm - who's signalling, not the whole crew. That we can agree on already
But can we do more?
If you have suggestions, don't hesitate to comment.