The match racing today went as scheduled in a fairly steady breeze of 20-25 knots. Nine flights with four matches. We are sailing in two groups – changed from three since the number of competitors is only 19, instead of the predicted 24. So we sailed four flights in group A and five in group B.
The level of Match Racing is really high. With these fast Elliots and the skill of the ladies they can move really fast and we are concentrating really hard to keep up.
So rules 15 and 16 are predominant in the decisions we have to take on the water. The boat who gets right of way must initially give room to the other to keep clear (RRS15) and a boat with right of way that changes course must also give room for the other to keep clear (RRS16)
We had a call today involving the latter. A Blue boat clear ahead on close hauled course luffed to head to wind. The Yellow clear behind followed, a little to windward - not quite head to wind. Without backing any sail – possible in this breeze – the clear ahead boat stopped and started moving backward.
The clear astern boat came closer and closer and a few seconds later there was a contact. Yankee flag on Blue and Yellow.
We penalized Yellow for not keeping clear under rule 12 and/or 11 (the final contact was in an overlap position); Initially the Blue boat had to give room, because she changed course from forward to backward. But she did that. Yellow could easily have luffed more- or even tacked.
She however, did not do that and the boats had a slight contact.
Penalty for Yellow.
Tomorrow the predictions are good also, so we hope to continue with our scheduled nine flights.