Thursday, 22 March 2012

Judges Manual 2012

Together with the Race Management Manual, ISAF also published a new Judges Manual 2012
You can find it on this page: IJ Manual 2012

Both manuals have a lot in common and relevant text is printed in both. That's logical - a lot of issues are event related and should be treated the same way by all International Race Officials

But there are specific Judges sections. A few titbits:

K.12 Cautions in Evaluating Evidence
Protest committees can make judgements about the credibility of evidence based on style and presentation of evidence. Witnesses who express their opinions confidently are often given more weight than someone who is less forceful and less believable.
You should be aware of speech patterns that could lead juries to erroneous conclusions:
  • Use of hedge words, such as “kind of”, “I think”, “If I’m not mistaken”, “it seems”; 
  • Use of rising intonation in a declarative statement, suggesting that the speaker is seeking approval for the answer, e.g. in response to the question of “how fast”, the response “5 knots?”
  • Repetition indicating insecurity;
  • Intensifiers, such as “very close”, instead of “close”;
  • High degree of direct quotation, indicating deference to authority; and
  • Use of empty adjectives, such as “charming”, “cute”, “interesting”. 
Do not confuse confident witnesses with accurate ones because their confidence is based on more information than simply the information that determines its accuracy. Their confidence may not be at all related to the accuracy of their recall.

Picture on page 128:


M.2 Damage
There is no definition of exactly what constitutes damage; however ISAF Case 19 makes some suggestions:

  • was the market value diminished? 
  • was an item or equipment made less functional? 
  • was a crew member injured?
Under the ISAF Racing Rules Question and Answer Service Q&A 2010-31 J 013, although not binding, unlike ISAF Cases provides the following definition of Damage: Damage means physical harm caused in such a way as to impair the boat’s value, usefulness, or normal function. The only limitation in rule 31.1(a)(3) regarding the damage is that the damage must be obvious to the boats involved.

M.3 Serious Damage
This is not possible to define but a protest committee should ask:
  • was the performance of the boat or crew seriously impaired? 
  • was the market value of the boat significantly diminished?
  • was a crew member seriously injured?

I did a quick search in both documents on 'social media' and on 'code of conduct'.
Results were 0 on the first one and 4 on the second. The latter all in either the coaches, parents or other support personal sections...... Nothing about blogging.

As with the RM-Manual, please inform me if you find content that is noteworthy.


  1. I've also had a quick look at it but unfortunately didn't have enough time to read it all. It seems that they refreshed the 'old' one putting it in the same structure as the RM Manual. Most of it is the same text as the old one supplemented with some interesting spots, but still useful. The first sections (that are common with the RM Manual) are good guidelines but sometimes I find them too exaggerating and I think they go too much into details. I know, we have to keep up with time, but there are so many trivial behavioural questions that make it a bit redundant.
    Race officers had a bigger profit from the new manuals, as they didn't have one published on the website before. We can be a bit envy of them... :)

  2. "... usefulness, or normal function. The only limitation in rule 31.1(a)(3) regarding the damage is that the damage must..."

    I think you are referring to Rule 61.1(a)(3)

    1. Well spotted. You are correct, rule 31 has no sub-paragraphs.


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