Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Seven at the Leeward Mark; Part 3

Instead of keep repeating my arguments in the comments, I have another situation to explain why I think that the three outside boats don’t have rule 18 rights or obligations between them in this post: Seven at the Leeward Mark, LTW Readers Q&A (60)

Again I’ve created a much simpler situation involving three boats:
But this time they are all overlapped. The leeward mark has to be left to port.

In position 2 Red reaches the zone. From that moment Red has to give Purple AND Grey markroom.
Purple however has not reached the zone. And does not have to give markroom to Grey as long as she does not enter the zone. Because for her series score it is beneficial that Grey does not finish in the first half of the fleet, Purple decides to luff and force Grey up. She complies with 16.1 and gives enough room to Grey to keep clear.

In my opinion she is allowed to do this.

If not, this chain would never end. Add a fourth or a fifth boat and they would not be allowed to luff as soon as one boat is in the zone, if - as the argument in our seven boat scenario is commented upon - rule 18 was switched on, between all boats.

Rule 18 is on between Red and the other two, but not (yet) between Purple and Grey.


Tuesday, 28 February 2012

ESS 2012 Act 1; Muscat, Oman

I’m in Muscat, Oman for Act 1 in the Extreme Sailing Series 2012. A great venue, with nice summer weather and the Indian Ocean to sail on. That part is going great.

What isn’t working and a bit frustrating is that I’m having problems getting on-line. The internet connections at the hotel and at the venue have to deal with too much traffic and the capacity isn’t nearly enough to accommodate everyone. I’ve been trying all Tuesday when ashore, but with rarely any success. It is now 22:10 hours and I’m back in the hotel. Only 15 minutes so far.

I’ve written this post in Windows Live Writer and uploaded it in the short time I’m able to connect. It also means that I’m having to use any connection, as far as I can get it, for Email. Receiving and sending necessary messages without enough time to write much on the blog. I’m unable to connect long enough to answer comments in a meaningful way. Approving them to be published is already problematic.

This has prompted me to decide to put our LTW Winter Challenge 2012 on hold for the time being. All deadlines are extended with one week. This Friday there will be no new challenge post and the current challenge case is on ‘suspended’. I’m sorry to have to do this, but I see no other way.

We are here in Muscat with six umpires looking after the rules for eight Extreme 40’s. A couple of newcomers have joined the circuit. ZouLou from France, skippered by Loick Peyron (who has sailed E40’s before) and Trifork, a new Danish team, co-skippered by Jens Gram-Hansen. Back are Alinghi, but this time skippered by Ernesto Bertarelli himself, Oman Air, skippered by new comer Morgan Larson, The Wave Muscat, skippered by Leigh McMillan, and Gitane, Red Bull and GAC Pindar. The last three have been competing in 2011 as well and are again skippered by Pierre Pennec, Roman Hagara and Ian Williams, respectively.

It was a fairly light day with 6-10 knots wind and open water, up and downwind courses. Tomorrow the close inshore stadium racing will start, in front of a brand new location for the VIP-tent.

In order to not leave you completely without any rules issues, a situation from today (with a little adaptation) to think about:

120228 ess1 start

Before the starting signal three boats are close to the line. There is an opening in between Red and Grey because Grey is sailing away from Red. Purple decides to go in the opening and gets and overlap with Red fairly close. In position three the distance between Purple and Red is reduced to only half a meter, although Red has luffed in response to Purple’s overlap. Purple realises she is not giving Red the room to keep clear and decides to bear away to open up the distance.

But in position three when Purple was still about 4 meters away, Grey has come up. She’s changed course but within the limitation of rule 16.1. Purple is now boxed in. She has to give room to Red to keep clear, but can’t go down anymore without breaking rule 11 towards Grey. Purple goes down anyway and Grey protests.

Who should be penalized?

Grey has not broken 16.1. When she changed course she gave enough room to Purple to keep clear. Only not enough room for Purple to be able to give enough room to Red to keep clear.

Purple has to give room to Red to keep clear, but can only do so by not keeping clear of Grey…

Come on, decide…

The Yankee flag was already 7 seconds ago.

In the meantime the starting signal has gone and boats are accelerating



Signing off for today with a picture of Alinghi who has new dark sails with the familiar red swirl.


Monday, 27 February 2012

(pillow)Case of the week (09/12) – 21

(This is an instalment in a series of blogposts about the ISAF Case book 2009-2012 with amendments for 2011. All cases are official interpretations by the ISAF committees on how the Racing Rules of Sailing should be used or interpreted. The cases are copied from the Casebook, only the comments are written by me.)

(pillow)Case picture


Definitions, Mark-Room
Definitions, Proper Course
Definitions, Room

The amount of space that a right-of-way boat obligated to give mark-room to an inside overlapped boat must give at the mark depends on the inside boat’s proper course in the existing conditions.


When a right-of-way boat is obligated to give mark-room to an inside boat that overlaps her, what is the maximum amount of space that she must give? What is the minimum amount of space that she must give?


As the definition Mark-Room states, while the inside boat is at the mark the outside boat must give her room to sail her proper course. If the overlapped boats are on the same tack, mark-room includes room to tack. According to its definition, ‘room’ in this case is the space needed by an inside boat, which in the existing conditions is handled in a seamanlike way, to sail her proper course while at the mark.

The inside boat’s proper course is the course she would sail to finish as soon as possible in the absence of the outside boat. This may entitle the inside boat to more space than she needs for a seamanlike rounding. For example, her proper course may be a track that takes her farther from the mark as she rounds than a seamanlike rounding would so that her speed is not reduced by the tightness of her turn. Note that, according to the definition Mark-Room, an inside overlapped boat that is required to keep clear of the outside boat is not entitled to sail her proper course while sailing to the mark; she is only entitled to sail her proper course after she is at the mark.

The term ‘existing conditions’ deserves some consideration. For example, the inside one of two dinghies approaching a mark on a placid lake in light air will need relatively little space beyond that required for her hull and properly trimmed sails. At the other extreme, when two keel boats, on open water with steep seas, are approaching a mark that is being tossed about widely and unpredictably, the inside boat may need a full hull length of space or even more to ensure safety. The phrase ‘in a seamanlike way’ applies to both boats.

First, it addresses the outside boat, saying that she must provide enough space so that the inside boat need not make extraordinary or abnormal manoeuvres to sail her proper course while at the mark.
It also addresses the inside boat. She is not entitled to complain of insufficient space if she fails to execute with reasonable efficiency the handling of her helm, sheets and sails while sailing her proper course.

ISAF 1969/1


You might also want to read Q&A 2009-022 B005.

And from Rapid Response Match Racing Call 2010/001

Question 2
When does a boat sailing ‘to the mark’ become ‘at the mark’?

Answer 2
A boat that is sailing ‘to the mark’ will be ‘at the mark’ when one or more of the following conditions apply:

  • (a) She is no longer able to alter course, in a seamanlike way, towards the mark and pass it on the wrong side.
  • (b) Any part of her hull overlaps the mark and she is closer than half of her hull length to the mark.
  • (c) She reaches a position where she would usually alter course to round or pass the mark on the required side in order to start sailing the next leg of the course.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Seven at the Leeward Mark; Part 2

As promised I would try to explain why I think that the three outside boats don’t have rule 18 rights or obligations between them in this post: Seven at the Leeward Mark, LTW Readers Q&A (60)

To do this I’ve created a much simpler situation involving three boats:

120226 7atwm1a

We have Grey, Purple and Red all sailing toward a leeward mark to be left to port. In position one Red enters the zone. Rule 18 switches on.

Both Grey and Purple have to give Red mark-room because she entered the zone clear ahead (RRS 18.2(b), second sentence.)

However, between Grey and Purple, rule 18 is not yet applicable. Provided she does so with rule 16.1 limitation and has no rule 17 limitation, Purple could luff and keep Grey outside the zone. She does not have to give mark-room to Grey, although rule 18 is switched on between her and Red.


120226 7atwm1b

Now we come to position two.

Both Grey and Purple still have to give mark-room to Red. In position 2 Purple enters the zone so now rule 18 is applicable between her and Grey. Grey has an inside overlap and is entitled to mark-room (RRS 18.2(b), first sentence)








This simplified scenario indicates that although all three boats are subject to rule 18 once Red enters the zone, that rule does not apply between the two outside boats as long as they themselves are not in the zone.

If I apply that principle to our Seven Boat problem:


In position two we have four boats inside the zone and three outside. Red, Purple and Blue all have to give mark-room to the inside ‘four’. But because none of those three have reached the zone themselves, RRS 18 does not apply between them. Red must keep clear of Purple, who must keep clear of Blue, all under RRS 11.

I hope I’ve clarified my view, and now await your punishment.

Score 02/17 LTW 2012 Winter Challenge

For individual comments see my remarks after your entries in the comments of the original post:
LTW 2012 Winter Challenge 02/17: Request for Redress

Key factor in this incident is to find as fact whether Red established the collision course before Purple became keep clear boat or after. In other words, was Red pointing at Purple before Purple passed head to wind or after. A lot of what you conclude is determined by that fact.

Option ONE
If before, Red has no restrictions under rule 16.1 since the course change was before she became ROW boat. And no restriction under 15 because she became ROW boat by Purple's actions. In this scenario Purple breaks rule 13 by not keeping clear as tacking boat and Purple breaks rule 14 because she shouldn't have tacked in that position. It was therefore reasonable possible for her to avoid the contact

Option TWO
If after, Red has a restriction under rule 16 (she changed course as ROW boat and established a collision course) and must give Red room to keep clear - which being a tacking multi hull - can take some time. Then you also must draw a conclusion on whether or not Purple did enough to keep clear. Could she have accelerated faster, getting out of that position in front of Red? If she could have done more, she breaks rule 13, if she couldn't have done more, she's exonerated because of Red's infringement of 16.1.

Could Purple avoid the collision? Once she was in that tack she could do little else than go forward asap. Did she do that? Another conclusion to be drawn. Remember, in option two she is a boat entitled to room, so under rule 14 she didn't need to act to avoid contact until it was clear that Red wasn't going to give her that room. I think not. Purple couldn't reasonably avoid contact any more and did not break rule 14.

When it became clear that Purple wasn't going to keep clear, was it reasonably possible for Red to avoid the collision? The fact that she "missed" hitting Purple only by ten centimetres, is more or less irrelevant. You must either conclude she reasonably could avoid or couldn't.
In my opinion she could. She broke rule 14. And that is completely separate from if you've found as fact option one or two.

Red did a two turns penalty. Is that an appropriate penalty for breaking RRS 14? That depends on the damage - was it serious or not. A boat that cannot continue is serious damage. So Red should have retired> Red DSQ.

If you think Purple is at fault, you nevertheless may not DSQ her. She is to be scored DNF.
She retired and that is an appropriate penalty. The reason for her retirement is irrelevant. (Case 99 & 107)

The protest is valid despite the fact a red flag was not shown. The damage was obvious to both and Red was informed before end of protest-time. RRS 61.1(a)(3)

If you concluded that Purple is to be exonerated for breaking rule 13 and did not break rule 14, she's entitled to redress. In all other scenarios it is more or less her own fault (at least partly) and she's therefore not entitled to redress.

If you give Redress you can give her her first place or an average of her 6 sailed races (excluding or including her discard). For that you need the total number of boats that sailed in the races. Nobody asked this question. But then only one of you granted redress.

This brings our score to:

Equal Points on first place.

I must decide on a way to resolve ties.....
Any suggestions?


Saturday, 25 February 2012

International Race Officer Seminar in NED

The ISAF logo
From The ISAF Website:

ISAF Race Officials News
The Hague, The Netherlands

Are you an experienced national race officer and do you want to become an International Race Officer?
From 16 - 18 March the Race Management Seminar will be organized in The Hague by the Royal Netherlands Yachting Union and ISAF.

With instructors Charley Cook and Christophe Gaumont we are sure it will be very interesting and instructive days, with theory and practical exercises. At the end of the seminar we finish with an exam, which gives you the entrance to become an International Race Officer. The costs are € 294,- , including two nights hotel accommodation.

For more information and registration please contact: edwin dot lodder at watersportverbond dot nl 

The ISAF Race Official Seminar and Clinic programme aims to improve standards of officiating around the world by increasing the number of officials qualifying for ISAF International status. The programme depends on the co-operation of ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs) who host the seminars. You can find details on the guidelines and procedures for hosting a seminar or clinic, together with application forms for MNAs wishing to host one on the ISAF Race Officials site at

I'm already at an event, otherwise I would have gone...
How about you?

Friday, 24 February 2012

LTW 2012 Winter Challenge E02/24: YES/NO

Another Friday, another Challenge in our Winter Series. This time I'm presenting you with two animations.

Protest between two F18's. Purple and Grey at the first upwind mark to be left to port. Protest is delivered in time and has all necessary details are filled in. Grey protest Purple for not keeping clear under rule 13. The hearing is scheduled and started. The PC declares the protest valid.

The situation depicted in the animation ONE is what GREY tells in the hearing room.

The situation depicted in the animation TWO is what PURPLE tells in the hearing room.

You can ask two questions to both parties. (that is two to Grey and two to Purple)
Deadline for Question 1 (one to each) is Monday 23:59, and Question 2 (one to each) Wednesday 23:59

Your challenge:
Write the facts found, conclusion and decision of the protest.

Deadline for the previous Episode 02/17 is midnight tonight (23:59hours)

Poll: Short or Long?

Just a Poll announcement.

Lately I've been sending out posts to feedreader- and e-mail subscribers in a short format. Only the first couple of sentences of a new post. In the past I always used the full post.
With a shortened post I get a little more traffic to LTW, but I also realise that subscribers might prefer otherwise.

I've created a Poll-widget (top left) on LTW so you can tell me your preferences. Whatever answer gets the most votes, will dictate my settings. Go and vote, you have one month to do so.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

RYA Code of Conduct for Race Officials

Something went wrong with the feed yesterday. Somehow my post about the Seven boats at the Leeward mark got abbreviated and was not visible. My apologies to all feed- and mail subscribers.
Please visit
if you want to have a look. The discussion in the comments is really heating up, and I could use some help :-)

As I'm preparing two presentations, I do not have much time today to write a post.
I looked to my 'draft' folder and came across an old post which somehow never got posted.
Published by the RYA in 2007:
RYA race officials (race officers, judges and umpires) are among the most exposed officials of the sport. It is therefore essential that they behave with the highest degree of competence, propriety and integrity. At no time can or should a race official do anything to bring the sport into disrepute.
Specifically, RYA race officials are expected to:
  • Maintain a good level of understanding and application of the racing rules, cases, procedures and RYA policies.
  • Ensure that decisions are based upon the rules and principles of fairness and objectivity and are made with care without prejudice.
  • Uphold the confidentiality of jury deliberations during and after the regatta.
  • Be polite, open-minded and patient, and deal with dissent in a fair and courteous manner.
  • Declare any conflict of interest before accepting a race official invitation or when one becomes apparent at an event (a conflict of interest exists when an RYA race official has, or reasonably appears to have, a personal or financial interest which could affect the official’s ability to be impartial).
  • Plan to arrive at an event on time and remain until relevant issues are resolved.
  • Incur only expenses that are necessary and when expenses are reimbursed claim only legitimate and essential out-of-pocket costs.
  • Be on time and wear appropriate clothing on the water and ashore.
  • Abstain from consuming alcohol until duties are over for the day. Race officials must never become inappropriately inebriated during an event.
I was wondering if your MNA has ever written anything similar? Do you have a guideline?
If so please send me a copy (rrs-study at home dot nl), so that we can compare.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Seven at the Leeward Mark, LTW Readers Q&A (60)

Unlucky seven I would say.

Like I promised yesterday, a seven boat problem at the leeward mark. This was send in by Uli from Germany. This is what he wrote in his first mail:
"red" , "purple" and "blue" are not in the zone. All seven boats are a long time overlapped and required to leave the mark on port and there are only few centimetres between all of the boats in position 2 and contact without damage between "red" , "purple" and "blue".
Rule 11 applies between them. What about Rule 18 between "red" , "purple" and "blue" because they are not in the zone? I think that is a hole in the rule - done by cancelling the words "giving mark room" out of the definition obstruction. 

I answered:
Couldn’t we use 16.1?
As soon as Blue or Purple change course they have go give room to Red to keep clear,
Red cannot keep clear because she has to give mark-room to the inside boats (as do Blue and Purple towards all boats in the Zone.)

But he came back with this:
In the following situation 16.1 is not applicable:

The only solution I have is that Red and Purple should see this coming. The have to keep clear of their respective Leeward boats, but don't have mark-room. They must however give Mark-room to the inside boats..... They both are failing to keep clear under RRS 11. Red also breaks 19.2(b), she could slow down in position 1. Dark Blue will infringe 14 by not avoiding contact, but if there's no damage...

Please give Uli and me your views.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Look To Windward Facebook Page


LTW now has its own facebook page.

I will publish all blog posts on the wall of that page, so if you prefer to follow the Racing Rules of Sailing in that way, please click on the like button in the second from the top right widget.

Or visit the page and click on the like button there:

Then your personal facebook page will show the posts as well.

There always be a link back to the blog so you can comment, but I get notified as well if you comment on facebook. I'll try to keep up with both.

Also new is a (very) small LTW Store. In it I can display items you are looking for or that I think might interest you. The actual selling is done by Amazon - but like with the snipers, I get a small fee for pointing you to their products. Have a look, the store is accessible by clicking in the top right widget.

For the real savvy internet people: Have you found the follow on Twitter button? That way you'll never miss the next post and can be the first to comment.....

And if you want to spread the word, there's a floating Share, Retweet and Google+ box on the left side. You can finally show your friends how you learned to become such a rules expert!

The last couple of days I've been hard at work in adding al sorts of stuff to the blog. I'll now start weeding out a bit, so that the front page doesn't take so long to load any more. Please be patient - eventually I'll get there.

In the meantime, have you tried to use a sniper already?
If so, I would love to hear your comments. Or a suggestion for a product, perhaps?

Tomorrow I'll get back to the rules - with a seven boat problem at the leeward mark....

Monday, 20 February 2012

(pillow)Case of the week (08/12) – 22

(This is an instalment in a series of blogposts about the ISAF Case book 2009-2012 with amendments for 2010. All cases are official interpretations by the ISAF committees on how the Racing Rules of Sailing should be used or interpreted. The cases are copied from the Casebook, only the comments are written by me.)

(pillow)Case picture


Rule 61.2(c), Protest Requirements: Protest Contents
Rule 63.5, Hearings: Validity of the Protest or Request for Redress
Rule 64.1(a), Decisions: Penalties and Exoneration

It is irrelevant for deciding on the validity of a protest that the protest committee thinks the rule cited in the protest as having been broken will very likely not be the applicable rule.

Summary of the Facts

After a collision near a mark, S protested P, citing rule 18 on her protest form as required by rule 61.2(c). The protest committee declared the protest invalid and refused to proceed with the hearing, because it said the protest should have cited rule 10 rather than rule 18. Had the hearing gone ahead and the parties been questioned, the protest committee said, the protest might have been upheld. S appealed.


Rule 61.2(c) requires the protest to identify any rule the protestor believes was broken. There is no requirement that the rule or rules identified must be the rule or rules that are later determined to have been broken, and it is irrelevant for deciding on the validity of the protest that the protestor cited a rule that will very likely not be the applicable rule.

It is the protest committee, after finding the facts, that determines the applicable rule. Rule 64.1(a) states that a disqualification or other penalty shall be imposed whether or not the applicable rule was mentioned in the protest. It is unimportant that the protestor made a mistake in citing the rule.

The appeal is upheld to the extent that the protest committee is instructed to hold a new hearing.

FIV 1967/4 촀⩚늂


Everybody gets a ‘freebie’ as far as citing the correct rule is concerned. This practice probably came about after some protests were thrown out because of using the wrong rule. And to be denied justice, because one forgot that port-starboard was rule 10 and not 11, was most likely perceived as very unfair. Can’t argue with that, can you?

In practise this means however, that whatever the protestee puts in the box gets ignored. And the general side effect is that sailors don’t even look-up the correct rule anymore.

”I am right and the other one is wrong and the PC can sort it out…..

In my opinion this ‘freebie’ has contributed to the general decline in rules knowledge. Let alone skill in the room. The phrase “He hasn’t won on the water” comes to mind. Wining a protest is somehow a little ‘dirty’.

As long as there are no referees on the water – judging every incident and acting independently – our sailing sport will be a self-policing sport. Competitors are expected not only to follow but to enforce the rules.

And that starts with knowing the rules. Including which rule number!
They are on your bloody phone as an APP, are they not?
It takes five seconds to look it up….

Get rid of the ‘freebies’, bring knowledge back!

Get Up, Stand Up, Fight for your Rights!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Score 02/10 LTW 2012 Winter Challenge

Phew, that were a lot of questions.
Some good, some not so, but because of different perspectives, everybody could experience that a fellow judges question may trigger a thought in your brain. Not so good questions, got 'bad answers', so I'll only count and not value the content... But in a next round I might.. (>.<)

As most of you discovered, this episode was about Case 50. The Port tack boat must convince the PC that their was not a reasonable apprehension of collision by Starboard. Read (pillow)Case of the Week (08) - 50, if you want to brush up.

This was the picture/animation I made when writing the Episode. In it you see the Red boat bearing away in position 3, just short of a boat length from Purple. There's also a Pink boat. It is only to show what would have happened if Red hadn't changed course.

Individual; remarks about FF, Conclusions and Decision are - per usual - in the comments in the original Episode Post: LTW 2012 Winter Challenge 02/10; Questions

The Score:
I've counted the number of questions + 5 points for a perfect and correct answer. Anybody mentioning Case 50 got a bonus point. There were a some challengers who asked questions but didn't send in an answer.....

We are almost halfway towards the hundred points, dear challengers, keep it up!


No, I don't mean those

Snipers are short for Affiliate Cash Snipers.
I've added a couple on LTW. Instead of going for a subscription fee or asking for a donation, I've decided to use Snipers. It is a little more crowded in the sidebar, I admit, but I DO need to earn some money with the Blog - like I told you in this post: Flog The Blog Day (46)

Those Snipers are specifically targeted on products YOU are looking for.
A new start watch, perhaps. Or a life jacket. You can use the Interactive Customization Filters in a Sniper to search for that product which you need. And if you find what you are looking for and buy it - I earn a small commission for pointing you in the right direction.

A Sniper explained

So, next time you need a new Camera or Life Jacket, please use one of my Snipers.
It would be a big help!
You found what you where looking for and I can keep writing LTW.



PS. If you have suggestions for a product line, please tell me and I'll find a Sniper for you.
PPS: If you want to install Snipers on your website or blog, go to Affiliate Cash Snipers.Com

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Racing Rules of Sailing - Live Slow, Sail Fast!: The origins of basic road rules

Racing Rules of Sailing - Live Slow, Sail Fast!: The origins of basic road rules

The sailing- judging community has been joined by a new blogger, an enthusiast young judge from Hungary who started with a rulesblog called "Live Slow - Sail Fast!"

I've been reading his posts - by using the English translation button. The syntax gets a little garbled but I can follow most of it. But even if I couldn't, it is still a good initiative - to provide some background for Hungarian judges, officials and sailors.

He posted an interesting story about the reasons behind the Right of Way rules. The basic rules in the book, rules 10, 11 and 12. Here is the gist of it:
All these basic rules give right of way to the least manoeuvrable boat. Look at rule 11, windward - leeward. Boats are overlapping so the boat to leeward is in the wind shadow of the windward boat - has less wind, so is less manoeuvrable. Don't picture modern racing yachts, but square riggers. That's when they came up with these rules.

Same goes for rule 12; Clear Ahead - Clear astern. When running downwind, the boat behind catches all the wind and can more easily manoeuvre. So the boat Clear Ahead gets right of way.

With Port and Starboard we have to go back a little more. Perhaps you remember those Viking-longboats longships*? They had an oar sticking out in the water on the right side end of the boat. That oar functioned as a rudder.

The other side became Port because if you want to park the boat alongside a shore, you don't use the steering side.... So a longboat was always tied to the dock with the port-side.

When sailing on starboard tack the boat would heel to port. And visa versa. When sailing on port tack the starboard side of the boat would dig in. On the first tack the oar would be sticking out of the water a little more. Making the boat a bit less 'steerable' than on port tack. So the boat on starboard-tack became right of way. Port tack could more easily get out of the way.
I don't know if his story is accurate, but the explanation seems very plausible to me.
What about you? What do you think?

* From an LTW readers Email: Longboats: A longboat is a small rowing boat kept on the deck of a larger ship for the purpose of getting ashore. A longship is a warship/troop transport of the Viking period.

Flog the Blog Day (52)

It has been a while since I wrote a 'Flog the Blog Day' post. By my calculations it should be number 52 - if I count all the months since I first started LTW (17 November 2007; FIRST POST)

52 months equals 4 years and 4 months. 1058 published posts - not counting the static pages. And over 3000 comments from readers or myself. Almost 90.000 unique readers visited just over 200000 times. Google Analytics states they came from 175 countries. Not quite all nations on Earth, but close enough.
Greenland being the biggest exception. Does nobody sail in Greenland?

Hekla Havn, Greenland
'Flog the Blog Day' is reserved for a post where I tell you what my plans are and for asking you, to give me some feedback on the blog and how I'm doing. Should I write different posts? Should the colour of my blog change? More or less advertising? Different style? What about this new three column design? Is it working?

Please tell me what you think about layout, posting, commenting or whatever.

As for my plans: I'm preparing a new series for sailors. Going back to the basics.
Also in the pipeline are posts about the coming changes in the rules for the next cycle 2013-1016.
And I plan to review some books, programs and other 'accessories' that help with the rules. (I'm heavily involved in the next update of an iPhone/Android application called You-Tack)

I will continue with the (pillow)Cases until the Casebook is done and then have a look at the Call books for Match and Team Racing. I will try to explore the possibilities that other Social Media are providing to keep you informed about my travels and events. First one outside my own country is in two weeks, Act 1 in the Extreme Sailing Series to be sailed in Muscat, Oman.

But if you have suggestions, please don't hesitate to tell me (If you don't want to use the comments - Email me, please)

Thank you all for reading LTW!

Friday, 17 February 2012

LTW 2012 Winter Challenge E02/17: Request for Redress

Request for Redress

During a port-starboard incident in a fleet race for Tornado's, there's a collision between Red and Purple. Red's starboard bow hits the starboard rudder of Purple and sheers it completely off. Purple cannot finish the race but manages to sail home with one rudder. Red does a two turn penalty. Purple hands in a protest form with the attached situation-drawing and asks for redress.

In the hearing you find as fact that Purple NOT displayed a red flag, but did hail 'Protest'
The incident happened in the one but final race. Both boats have equal points (out of 6 races) and both already have a discard. Purple discards a BFD and Red a DNF. The boat winning this protest is most likely to win the event. (A National Championship).
 Animation E02/17

Picture from RED

Write the facts found, draw conclusions and decide the protest & the request for redress.

You may ask two questions related to what happened on the water, before Monday 23:59 which will be answered on Tuesday. And you may ask two questions related to the request for redress, before Wednesday 23:59, which will be answered on Thursday.

Deadline for FF, C and D, as per usual Friday 23:59

Thursday, 16 February 2012

DutyMan for the KWS

Well, the experiment has begun!

As you might know, I'm active in two local sailing clubs. In one (KWV Langweer) I do mostly Race Officers duties and in the other (KW Sneek) mostly Jury duties. For the latter one of my responsibilities is to find volunteers for all the protest committees at events during the year. Fill in the duty roster, so to speak.

Last year, during an ESS event, I came in contact with a representative of a web-based program that can help with this. That program is called DutyMan. It is already in use by many clubs in Great Britain and works very well - according to John - the guy who told me about this.

I expressed an interest and to cut a long story short - we are now using the system on a trail bases.

DutyMan applies internet technology to simplify the organisation of club duties. I've uploaded our calendar with each individual duty and all the data of our volunteers. Yesterday I gave the system the go ahead to send out the first mail to all members inviting them to log-on and fill in on which dates they can "Do their Duties" this year. This phase will take a month in which everybody is free to pick an indicate what they are willing to do. After that we will evaluate the holes in the roster and have a meeting. Then we will assign the duties for the rest of the year.

The calender will be kept up-to date on the internet and everybody can find out who will be joining them for a specific event and in what capacity. If, for whatever reason, a member is unavailable the program gives him or her the possibility to initiate a request to swap and find a replacement. The program sends reminders automatic and the PRO of the event is kept up to date with all mutations.

I have high hopes this will make my job a lot easier. I don't have approach each individual volunteer any more to get the PC roster filled....

If you want to have a look at the program go to

If you think this is something your club can use and you apply for the program, I would appreciate if you mention you got the link from LTW. You can use it for 90 days on a trail bases.
And if you have questions or just want to tell me how things are going, don't hesitate to contact me.

Oooh, although the program has been written for yachting clubs, it is can easily be used for any 'duty roster' that needs to be filled by volunteers.

I'll keep you informed how things are going with our KWS Duty-roster 2012.


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