Friday, 13 January 2012

LTW 2012 Winter Challenge – Episode 01/13

Facts Found:
Boats are one design 6.5 meter Keelboats, wind is steady, blowing force 3 Beaufort, calm water, close to shore, no big waves.
  120113 FFc p1
Position 1: Blue on Port tack and Green on Starboard tack sailing on a beat to windward. Blue is steering a course to pass astern of Green
 120113 FFc p2
Position 2: Green luffs preparatory to tacking, still on Starboard tack. Blue heads up, but is still steering to pass (close) astern of Green. Shortest distance between boats, when Blue passes astern, is 0,75 meter.

120113 FFc p3
Position 3: Green has passed head to wind and now on Port tack. Blue heads up to close hauled and just after Green passed head to wind makes an overlap to leeward with Green from clear astern. Distance  between bow of Blue and starboard stern of Green, is 2 meters
 120113 FFc p4
Position 4: Green completes her tack to close hauled on Port. Blue continues to head up and is now above close hauled also on Port tack. Distance between boats is now less than 0,5 meter.

120113 FFc p5
Position 5: There was contact between boats just after position 4. After that Blue bears away and Green heads up. Both boats protest. Half a minute after the collision Blue does two turns (with 2Gybes&2Tacks), Green does no turns. After coming back ashore Green discovers that there is nicked yell coat scratch amidships, starboard side.
Here’s the animation of the SLAM DUNK:
120113 FFc Anim
Rules of Part 2 involved: 10, 11, 13, 14, 16.1, 16.2 and 17.


You are a member of the PC panel deciding the protest(s)
You are allowed ONE* question (so think about what you want to ask!) by using the comments button before the next Monday 08:00 GMT+01:00. (=my time)

After that give me your conclusion and decision, within a week of posting, please.
(*if you ask more than one Q, I’ll answer only the first)

Questions will be answered in the order they are send in, after the deadline. Conclusions and Decisions will be published after one week.

Points are awarded on consistency between conclusion and decision, and arguments used to reach them. The more succinct, the better!

Max 10 points per episode. First to reach 100 points wins a Sailors Quarrel Bag including a paper-plate with the Zone and Lay-lines

One entry per person – AND, you must use a NICKNAME to enter the competition – by sending an Email to me, with your email address, your real name and that nickname. rrs-study (at) home (dot) nl. Please put LTW 2012 Winter Challenge in the subject line.

Oooh, before I forget. To make it more equal, ISAF IJ’s or IU’s start with minus 25 points.

Are you up to the challenge?

UPDATE Monday 16/01/12 08:25;
Nine (ten) challengers have entered; Questions have been asked and answered;
Final Entries must be in by Friday 20/01/12 23:59
(I'm not sure what has happened with the timestamps on the comments > my blog is set on GMT+1. Why blogger uses 9 hours earlier, I do not know, but will try to find out)

UPDATE Friday 20/01/12 14:15;
Dear Competitors,
For those of you who haven’t yet send in their decisions and conclusion, the deadline for episode 01/13 is today 20/01/2012 at 23:59h. Earn your first (maximum) ten points and don’t be late!
Good luck! Jos

UPDATE Sunday 22/01/12 14:00;
All recieved answers to LTW 2012 Winter Challenge Episode 13/01 have been posted and scored. I've put my comments below each contestant's entry and the scoring (as well as my answer) in a separate post:
Score 13/01 in LTW  2012 Winter Challenge.


  1. Putting right-of-way rules aside for the moment, Green, why didn't you avoid contact?

    1. I didn't expect Blue to come up so fast, by the time it was clear that we would collide, I couldn't do anything anymore.

  2. Question to blue. How long between your luff and contact?

    1. I don't understand your question, I continued luffing from position 1 to 4.

  3. What did the helmsman and crew on Green do, or tried to do, between posisions 3 and 4 in order to keep clear of Blue or to avoid contact with Blue?

    1. I didn't expect Blue to come up so fast, by the time it was clear that we would collide, I couldn't do anything anymore.

  4. A question to Blue - please give details, including the time taken, of all the things you did between the time of contact and the commencement of your two turn penalty.

    1. Dauphine, welcome (in the nick of time) to the LTW 2012 Winter Challenge.
      Before your question can be answered you must fulfill the CI's by sending me an Email, with your email address, your real name and nickname. rrs-study (at) home (dot) nl. Please put LTW 2012 Winter Challenge in the subject line.

    2. @Dauphine. Formalities have been fulfilled.
      Answer from Blue: About half a minute after the collision I did two turns. After having put up the red flag, we first checked if there was any damage to the bow; my crew went forward to have a look. There was no damage. Then I sailed clear of other boats and did my turns. I lost three places doing that.

  5. My question: Since both boats are over 6 meters, they must fly a red flag. Did Blue fly a red flag to make the protest valid?

  6. Question to Blue: The diagram that you agreed to shows that you established an overlap from clear astern. "Did you ever consider that you may have broken more than one sail racing rule after the incident with the green boat"?

    1. Yes, that is why I took a two turns penalty

  7. Tell me more about the nicked gell coat.

    1. It is a scratch about 10 centimeters long, about 2 mm in depth and ending in a pit. It will take me two hours to properly repair it. For now I have taped it over.

  8. Just one point on the timing - would it be possible to move the question deadline to Tuesday - for those of us involved at events at the weekend this would give us time to reflect on the problem. Team racing weekends don't leave much spare time...

    Grey Bear

    1. I will consider your request for the next episode. I'm sorry, but this episodes question deadline is passed.

  9. Conclusions

    1. Green, the windward boat, did not keep clear of Blue and broke rule 11.
    2. Blue broke rule 16 because rather than trying to avoid Green, Blue changed course towards her, allowing Green even less room to keep clear and making contact inevitable.
    3. It was reasonably possible for Green to have avoided contact, had she kept clear in the first place: she broke rule 14.
    4. It was reasonably possible for Blue to have avoided contact, when it was clear that Green was not keeping clear: Blue broke rule 14, and is subject to penalty as Green suffered damage as a result.
    5. Green did not suffer serious damage, in terms of rule 44.1(b).
    6. Blue absolved herself from breaking rules 14 and 16.1 by her two turn penalty.


    Green is DSQ
    Blue, having taken a two turn penalty, shall not be penalised further.


    Initially, Blue on port was required to keep clear of Green, on starboard, under rule 10. She did so by passing astern of Green.
    Rule 16.2 then applied. Green changed course, but did not break rule 16.2 because Blue was not forced to immediately change of course to avoid her.
    Once Green passed head to wind, she had to keep clear under rule 13.
    Blue was not restricted by rule 15 because she acquired right of way because of Green’s actions.
    Blue was not restricted by rule 17 because she acquired her overlap while Green was required by rule 13 to keep clear.
    Green bore away to a close hauled course. She then became obliged as windward boat to keep clear under rule 11.
    Between positions 3 & 4 both boats changed course simultaneously and began to converge. As they converged, Blue needed to take avoiding action to avoid a collision. Green, the windward boat, thereby failed to keep clear of Blue and broke rule 11.
    Rather than taking avoiding action, Blue continued luffing towards Green until nothing Green could have done would have avoided contact. Therefore Blue broke rule 16.1 as she had changed course without giving Green room to keep clear.
    Green cannot be exonerated for Blue’s breach of rule 16. While Blue’s luff made it impossible for Green to keep clear, Green had already sailed herself into a position whereby Blue needed to take avoiding action. Blue did not compel Green to break rule 11.
    The fact that Green broke rule 11 through her own actions does not relieve Blue from rule 16. Rule 16 applies regardless. If Blue’s change of course was a reasonable attempt to avoid contact, or if had given Green more room, then on the accepted interpretation, she would not have broken rule 16 - see cases 26 & 88. However she did the opposite.
    It was reasonably possible for Green to have avoided contact by simply not bearing away into Blue’s path. Green broke rule 14.
    It was reasonably possible for Blue to have avoided contact, once it was clear that Green was not keeping clear. When the boats converged, Green could have avoided contact by resuming a close hauled course, which required her to bear away only slightly. Instead she continued luffing.
    The scratch and its location are consistent with the damage that one would expect to have resulted from the collision. On the balance of probabilities, the protest panel can say that the collision with Blue either caused or contributed to that damage.
    As there was damage to Green, Blue is to be penalised for breaking rule 14.
    The damage to Green was not serious damage in terms of rule 44.1(b), as the scratch would not have seriously impaired Green’s performance or seriously diminished her market value. Blue and Green could therefore absolve themselves by a two turn penalty rather than retiring.
    Blue took a valid two turn penalty. The penalty was taken 30 seconds after contact, but that was within the allowable margin of time under rule 44.2, given that Blue was entitled to first raise a red flag, look for damage and then sail clear in order to take the penalty.
    Green did not take any penalty for breaking rules 11 and 14, so protest committee must disqualify her pursuant to rule 64.1(a).

    1. Conclusions and decision are short and to the point. Your notes however contradict what you conclude is some points. If Blue breaks 16.1 than Green is exonerated for breaking 11. I disagree that both can happen. Also you mix up boats in some sentences - which can be perceived as 'very sloppy' by third parties (sailors, appeals committee and press, to name but a few)
      While I like to read you thoughts on the matter, you should try to stick to the challenge and put your explanations - as far as relevant - in your conclusions. Would you give the same explanation after the hearing to the sailors? I hope not.
      Score 8 points.

  10. Conclusions and Decision from Grey Bear

    Assuming that the protest was found valid:

    1. When Green, on starboard changed course, Blue, on port,, who was keeping clear by sailing to pass astern of Green, did not need to change course to continue keeping clear. Green did not break rule 16.2.
    2. Blue became overlapped to leeward from clear astern whilst Green was subject to rule 13. Rule 17 does not apply.
    3. Blue acquired right of way because Green passed head to wind. Rule 15 does not apply.
    4. When Blue, right of way boat, changed course she did not give Green room to keep clear. Blue broke rule 16.1.
    5. When contact occured, Blue was right of way boat (rule 11) and Green was entitled to room to keep clear (rule 16.1). It was reasonably possible for both boats to avoid contact. The contact caused damage. Both Blue and Green broke rule 14.
    6. The contact did not cause serious damage. A Two Turn penalty was an appropriate penalty (rule 44.1) . Blue took a Two Turn penalty in accordance with rule 44.2


    Protest is upheld.
    Green is disqualified (rule 64.1(a))
    Blue is not further penalised because she complied with rule 44.1(rule 64.1(b))

    1. Almost perfect. Your wording and format are spot on.
      The only conclusion I have issue with, is number 5. Since Blue was r.o.w. boat and Green entitled to room (Blue's 16.1), they both didn't have to respond until it was clear that the other was not giving room or keeping clear.
      How many second do you think Green had, after that became clear, to avoid the contact?
      Score 9 points.

  11. Conclusions

    From position 1 to the point where Green passes head to wind (sometime between positions 2 and 3):

    Rule 10 – Blue (port tack) keeps clear of Green (stbd tack) – OK

    Rule 16.1 – Green (right of way) gives Blue room to keep clear when Green changes course – OK

    Rule 16.2 – Blue (steering to pass astern of Green) does not immediately have to change course as a result of Green’s change of course (Blue’s luff is voluntary) – OK

    From point where Green passes head to wind to position 4:

    Rule 13 – Green (tacking) fails to keep clear of Blue (not tacking). By position 4 (at latest) Blue cannot continue sailing her course without taking avoiding action – Green in breach of rule 13

    Rule 17 – Whilst Blue becomes overlapped with Green from clear astern within two of her hull lengths to leeward of Green, Green (windward) is required by rule 13 to keep clear at this time and so rule 17 does not apply. Blue is therefore NOT prohibited from sailing above her proper course – OK

    Rule 15 – Rule 15 does not apply to Blue as she acquired right of way as a result of Green’s actions (tacking) – OK

    Rule 16.1 – Blue (right of way) is required to give Green room to keep clear when Blue changes course. At position 4 (at latest) Green does not have room to keep clear. (At some point between positions 3 and 4 the two boats were on parallel or converging courses and close enough that if Blue continued to luff Green would be unable to keep clear even if she luffed. At this point Blue should have stopped luffing. She did not.) – Blue in breach of rule 16.1

    From position 4 onwards:

    Rule 11 – Green (windward) fails to keep clear of Blue (leeward) – Green in breach of rule 11

    Rule 14 – Green fails to avoid contact with Blue when it was reasonably possible for her to do so (at the very least she could have postponed completion of her tack). Whilst Green is not required to anticipate Blue’s failure to give her room to keep clear, as keep clear boat Green is required to respond to Blue’s luff prior to this point which she does not (she continues to bear away) – Green in breach of rule 14

    Rule 14 – Blue fails to avoid contact with Green when it was reasonably possible for her to do so (she could have stopped luffing sooner and/or borne away, or at the very least have hailed Green to keep clear). [I realise now that I should have asked whether Blue made any hail during the incident.] Whilst as right of way boat Blue was not required to act to avoid contact until it was clear that Green was not keeping clear, Blue failed to act even at this point (she continued to luff). The contact also resulted in damage. Blue therefore broke rule 14 and may be penalized for doing so – Blue in breach of rule 14

    After the incident:

    Rules 44 and 64.1 – Blue broke rules 16.1 and 14. However Blue took a two-turns penalty promptly after the incident. Since the damage was not serious and Blue did not gain a significant advantage as a result of her breach of rules 16.1 and 14 she is not required to retire. Blue therefore took an applicable penalty, which is not DNE. Rule 64.1(a) therefore does not apply to Blue – No further penalty to be applied to Blue


    Disqualify (DSQ) Green for breach of rules 13, 11 and 14.


    1. Your analysis is complete en deals with all rules. But very long and using to many words. If Blue breaks 16.1, then Green is exonerated for a keep clear rule. If Green is breaking a keep clear rule then Blue doesn't infringe a limitation rule. You must choose.
      Score 8 points. (I'm deducting one point for not exonerating Green and one for using too many words)

  12. Conclusions
    1. At position 4, G a windward boat did not keep clear of B a leeward boat. G broke rule 11.
    2. At position 4, by her fast heading up, B did not give G room to keep clear. B broke rule 16.1.
    3. It was reasonably possible for B to avoid contact. B broke rule 14, and shall not be exonerated under rule 14(b.), because the contact caused damage.
    4. It was not reasonably possible for G to avoid contact after it became clear that she was not given room to keep clear. G did not break rule 14.
    5. G was compelled to break rule 11 by B’s breach of rule 16.1. G shall be exonerated under rule 64.1(c.)
    6. B’s penalty turns complied with rule 44.2 and shall not be penalized further.
    B and G shall be scored in their finishing positions.

    1. Very good. Short and to the point. I'm only missing a conclusion on rule 15 and 17 and you should put in your decision: Protest dismissed. Scoring is for the RC. What if the Green boat had a DPI for failing to check in? With this decision you wipe that out as well.
      Score 9 points. (Deducting one point for RRS 15&17, one for decision wording. But added a bonus point for a good question.)

  13. LTW 2012 Winter Challange; Deadline Episode 13/01‏

    Facts found.

    Blue and Green were beating to windward, Green on port and Blue on Starboard. The boats were on a collision course. Blue bore away to a beam reach to pass behind Green(1).
    As Blue passes Green's transom, she started to luff to a close hauled course(2). At the same time, Green also luffed and tacked.
    Blue established a leeward overlap on Green whilst Green was tacking(3). The the boats were 2 metres apart when the overlap was established.
    Green bore away to a close hauled course. Blue continued her luff(4), luffing above close hauled(5). Blue and Green made contact, causing damage to Green of a significant scratch in her gelcoat(6), with about 2 hours required for repair.
    After contact, both boats hailed protest and displayed protest flags.
    About 30 seconds after the incident, Blue completes a two turns penalty(7).


    The protest is valid
    Blue's luff did not give Green room to keep clear. Blue broke 16.1.
    Green broke rule 11, but was compelled to do so by Blue's infringement. Green is therefore exonerated under 64.1c.
    It was not reasonably possible for Green to avoid contact with Blue. It was, however, reasonably possible for Blue to avoid contact by bearing away. Blue did not do so, and therefore Blue broke rule 14.
    Blue has already taken a two turn penalty with regard to this incident(8).
    Protest dismissed.


    1. Green complying with 16.2, and Blue with 10 during this time.
    2. Green's luff here complied with 16.1. She gave Blue room to keep clear.
    3. As the overlap was established while Green was tacking, 17 does not apply to Blue. She was free to luff Green.
    4. Blue is not constrained by 15, as she acquired right of way by Green's action of tacking.
    5. It's difficult with an overlap of this type – of about ½ a boatlength – for the leeward boat to luff and comply with 16.1 as she does so. To do so, she has to luff slowly enough to still allow the windward boat room to keep clear, while she (leeward) is closing the distance between the two boats.
    6. A scratch in the gelcoat counts as damage, not serious damage, in my opinion. Once repaired, the boat will not suffer a deterioration in current value, nor was she made less functional (ISAF Case 19). This damage therefore, is not severe enough to have triggered the “no flag/no hail required” (61.1.a) clause. Also, the damage was not obvious to the boats involved. This is all moot anyway, as both boats protested.
    7. There is a question as to whether 30 seconds counts “as soon after the incident as possible”, as required by 44.2. I would say that for racing small keelboats, 30 seconds is towards the limit of what is acceptable; I believe that a slightly longer period is appropriate for keelboats (rather than, say, dinghy team racing) to allow for a quick discussion amongst the crew. I would give them the benefit of the doubt on this one.
    8. The penalty for serious damage or injury is to retire. As a gelcoat scratch is not serious damage, Blue's Two Turn penalty is the applicable penalty for her breach of the part two rules, 14 and 16.1. The PC cannot therefore further penalise her (64.1c).

    1. Good analysis but much too long. You have to remember you're having to write this in 'hearing time'! Don't repeat the facts found and put your notes - if necessary - succinctly into your conclusions. What is you decision?
      Score 7 points.

  14. Conclusion:
    1. After the green boat completed her tack to port she was overlapped to leeward by the blue boat and according to rule 13 was allowed to fall off to a close hauled course.
    2. The blue boat established her overlap from clear astern.
    3. The blue boat's proper course after the overlap was established was a close hauled course.
    3. The blue boat luffed above close hauled breaking rule 17.
    2.There was contact between the two boats.
    3. The green R.O.W. boat did not try to avoid the contact, but it was not clear that contact was going to occur until too late for the green boat to reasonably avoid the contact.
    4. The blue boat did not avoid the contact as she was required to do as the give way boat. In making contact which she could have avoided, she broke rule 14.
    5. There was some slight damage to the green boat, discovered after the race was completed.
    6. The blue boat did do two penalty turns.
    7. The green boat chose not to do any penalty turns.

    The blue boat is penalized for breaking rule 17 and 14.
    The blue boat is exonerated for breaking rule 17 because she did two penalty turns.
    The blue boat also broke rule 14. She did not do any penalty turns for breaking that rule, which would have sufficed, because the damage to the other boat was slight and there was no injury associated with the contact. The blue boat is disqualified for breaking rule 14.
    The green boat is not penalized.=

    1. "There was contact between the two boats" is a fact not a conclusion, like more than half or your conclusions.
      I'm also missing some key rules in your conclusions; and you have some rights and obligations backward. A boat is never 'entitled' to complete her tack. Under rule 13 she must keep clear even if that means stop turning.
      Rule 17 is not switched on, because the overlap was established when Green was tacking. Blue is R.O.W. boat not the keep clear boat at the moment there's contact. If a boat takes a two turn penalty she is exonerated for all the rules, not just one. (Unless exoneration is not applicable for some reason for one or more rules, for example; causing serious damage)
      Have a look at my answer and the other for next time.
      Score 2 points.

  15. Blue establishes her overlap before green completes her tack. When green completes her tack, it is a new overlap, so rule 17 is off. Blue is free to luff green, providing she complies with rule 16. Rule 15 does not apply, as blue acquired right of way a result of green's actions.

    Shortly after position 3, when the boats are on a parallel course, there are 2 meters between the boats. At that point, both boats continue to alter course towards each other. Green's alteration of course towards a right of way boat puts the onus on her to keep clear. After green completed her tack, with the boats converging, neither boat altered course for several seconds, then the contact occurred. Blue does not break rule 16. Green fouls blue by failing to keep clear (rule 11).

    Blue's taking of a two turns penalty does not affect the outcome of the rule 11 decision.

    After discovering the damage, green may file a protest to establish who is responsible to pay for repair of her damage. Much to her surprise, she will then be disqualified under rule 11 as discussed above.

    Blue, even though right of way boat, is still subject to rule 14. I find that blue could have avoided contact, and thus broke rule 14. Green has also broken rule 14. A major gel coat scratch requiring 2 hours of repair work constitutes "damage", and therefore the boat(s) can be penalized under rule 14.

    Timing of blue's turn: I find that if Blue suspected she might have serious damage which would affect her ability to continue in the race, it is reasonable to inspect the damage before taking a penalty. Therefore, even with the half minute delay, she took her penalty as soon as reasonably possible. So blue's valid two turns penalty exonerates her from being penalized under rule 14 - but does not free her from financial responsibility for the damage.

    Since both boats broke a rule, and either boat could have avoided contact, they should split the cost of the repair (if any).

    1. Your analysis and conclusions are mostly correct, but for exonerating Green because Blue broke 16.1. But the way you have written it up is 'all over the place'. Try to stick to the format as you would in a protest panel. Short and to the point.
      Explanations are - if sailors want that - for after the hearing has closed and all protest are done. Also be specific with your rule numbers. Was it 16.1 or 16.2? Exonerated under which rule?
      Oh, however much it may be asked, I would not say anything about costs. Leave that to the insurers.
      Score 6 points. Because of format mostly and because I had a hard time separating conclusions - decisions and notes / remarks.

  16. facts concluded out of the questions other that already given in the facts found on
    1: both boats yelled protest and showed a red flag immediately after the incident
    2: after the incident blue checked for damage, sailed free from other boats and took a 2 turn penalty
    3: the green boat has a 10cm long and 2mm deep scratch
    4: blue luffed from position 1 to position 4

    -because of fact 1 and the assumption the protest has been send in before the protest limit, the protest is valid
    -from the moment green turned head to wind it has to keep clear under rule 13
    -when green returned to a close-hauled course it already has an overlap with blue, thereby rule 15 and 17 do not apply
    -green has to keep clear under rule 13 and later on under rule 11, green shows no attempt to do so and should thereby be excluded under rule 11
    -blue continuous changes course and thereby has to give green room to keep clear under rule 16
    -blue fails to give green room to keep clear when he keeps luffing on position 4 (fact4) and thereby he violates rule 16
    -green has damage (fact3) and thereby blue also infringed rule 14
    -blue took a 2 turn penalty as soon as possible (fact2) and green`s damage is not of such nature that he could not continue sailing, thereby blue should not be excluded for his violations of rule 16 and 14

    final conclusion: only exclude green

    1. I can live with your additional facts but don't think they are essential. You analysis is fairly complete and deals with most rules. Only if Blue breaks 16.1 then Green should be exonerated for breaking rule 11 under 64.1(c). Also be specific in your rule numbers. Rule 16 has two rules: 16.1 and 16.2!
      For clarity it is prudent to use a capital letter if you name a boat with its color.
      What is your decision? Stick to the wording as used in the rules.
      Score 7 points.

  17. conclusions
    1) Green windward boat failed to keep clear of blue the leeward boat
    2) Green did not avoid contact when it was reasonably possible to do so
    3) Nick in gel coat did not constitute damage

    Green DSQ for breaking Rule 11,14
    Blue breaks Rule 14 but is not penalized

    1. I'm missing several key conclusions. Rule 17, rule 15? What about rule 16.1?
      Your conclusion on damage is wrong. A nicked gel coat is damage. Not 'serious' damage, but damage nevertheless. The decision to exonerate Blue is not supported by any conclusion... Have a look at the others and my answer, to see the formatting and how specific you need to be.
      Score 2 points.

  18. My question: Since both boats are over 6 meters, they must fly a red flag. Did Blue fly a red flag to make the protest valid?
    If not, there is no valid protest and neither boat is penalized.

    If what you are looking for is a Part 2 analysis, I would ask:
    After Green went through head to wind, if he had not borne off to close hauled on Port, would there have been a collision?

    My answer: If Yes, then after Blue gained right of way, Blue did not give Green room to keep clear and is penalized. Since Blue gained right of way because of Green's actions, rule 15 does not apply.

    If no, then the collision was caused by Green bearing off on a right of way boat and is penalized under rule 11.

    1. Your second question was relevant and your analysis also. But since you didn't send in the conclusions and decision it's hard for me to score you properly. I'll give you one point for the question.
      Score 1 points.


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