Sunday 30 December 2007

Happy New Year

Dear Readers,
Because of the festivities around the changing of the year, your blogger is going to spend some time with friends away from home. If the opportunity avails itself and I can find a connection for my laptop, I'll try to do a post or two. But don't count on it.
Anyway, you should spend some time with your own friends and family, not reading the posts of a rules-freak, who can't shut up. You can expect to hear from me again on January 3th... or thereabouts.
I wish you all, the very best for 2008 and hope you'll be back reading and commenting as well.

Saturday 29 December 2007

Principle Events?

In order to apply for International Status as a Race Official (Judge, Umpire or Race Officer) you need to have enough experience. The ROC considers your application and looks at the events you have been participating as an official. The guideline if those events are "good" enough is described in a publication from ISAF called: Principal Event Guidelines 2007
There is no definition for "Principal Events" because that would tie the hands of the committee to much. From the text is is clear that the exact criteria are open to interpretation and that is in my opinion a better way than to insist on participation in events specifically named. The experience counts, not the title of the regatta. If you have doubt if your event counts or should count, you can always ask the chief Umpire or the Chairman to give you an assessment of the level you've been exposed to. I've been to National Championships with 50+ boats and 7 regatta's with NO protest at all and also to Club-championships with more than enough work to satisfy any international jury. If you are thinking of becoming an IJ, IU or IRO, start keeping a record of all your events, and include as many details as you can.
I use a short database for that, so that I can filter on any criteria. But don't leave anything out, the more experience you can show, the easier it is for the committee to decide in your favor.

UPDATE: 22/02/08
New Principle Event Guidelines 2008 is published on the ISAF site.
As far as I can see there are no changes to the one in 2007

Friday 28 December 2007

Arbitration or Protest?

Last couple of years we've been trying to introduce Arbitration at our local events, as an alternative way in handling rule infringements, in stead of a complete protest-hearing. There are a couple of requirements before a protest can be dealt with in this way. For instance, Arbitration cannot be used if there's damage or injury. ISAF has not long ago published an amendment to the IJ-manual on this subject; 06_IJ Manual_arbitration07 You can read how the whole process is to be handled.
Our introduction has not been very successful. For most sailors the whole protest-procedure is not very well know, let alone an alternative like arbitration.
There are classes and events who've been using arbitration for longer. I'm very interested in their findings. How many protest are handled by arbitration, what is the percentage used for penalty and do the sailors request arbitration? If you have experience, please mail me or leave a comment.

Wednesday 26 December 2007

The whole kit and caboodle

Sailing is done in almost all weather conditions. I don't know about your local waters, but here in Friesland half of the time it's wet. As a judge or as a race officer I need something to write on which can withstand those raindrops. For recording down a mark rounding or sketching a situation between boats or just jotting down the conditions of a particular race.
I've used different kinds of notebooks, but lately I'm sticking to the WATERBOOK MEMOPAD. You can order them in different sizes and bindings on the internet from VIP WeatherWriter, a UK based company. Small enough (A6) to fit into any pocket. Usable with most pens, but great with a pencil.

Tuesday 25 December 2007

Exercise CASE; Writing a Protest

In studying rules you are always at the lookout for new cases. You can find situations raised by sailors in the varoius forums on the intenet: The following case was posted on the yachts and yachting forum a couple of weeks ago:

An interesting case has just been raised in discussions relating to a claim. I'd be interested to learn the thoughts of any rules gurus.The situation is as follows:
The Sailing Instructions of a regatta contained the following: "Boats whose warning signal has not been made shall keep clear of the starting area and of all boats whose warning signal has been made. Attention is drawn to RRS22.1"
Boat A has missed her start and is approximately 200m downwind of the start line 90 seconds after her starting signal, sailing close hauled on port tack. Boat B is sailing in a different fleet awaiting her preparatory signal, sailing on starboard tack. As the two boats approach, boat A hails "We are racing", boat B "Hails starboard". Boat A attempts to take avoiding action, but fails and a collision occurs. Obviously if both boats were racing, boat A should keep clear as per RRS10, but as Boat B is not yet racing, she should keep clear of boat whose warning signal has been made, as per the sailing instructions.
My question to the forum is - When the Sailing Instructions and the Racing Rules are in conflict, which should take precedent?

You can read all answers given and find out what others think about this.

I suggest however, to approach it as if you were the PC handling this protest. Write the facts found, conclusion and rules applicable and a decision. If you cannot find a fact because you are not able to get an answer from a person, don't worry, just assume a fact and go on. The purpose of this exercise is to get skilled in handling the paperwork, i.e. writing a protest.
Good luck!

Monday 24 December 2007

Dag van de Wedstrijdsport 26/01/2008

Onderstaand mailtje kreeg ik van het Watersportverbond:
Aan alle erkende wedstrijdofficials

Geachte wedstrijdofficial,

Hierbij nodig ik u uit voor de Dag van de Wedstrijdsport die op zaterdag 26 januari 2008 in het Huis van de Sport te Nieuwegein wordt georganiseerd. De Dag van de Wedstrijdsport is bestemd voor alle bij de wedstrijdsport betrokken bestuursleden, commissieleden en wedstrijdofficials van klassenorganisaties, verenigingen, hoofdsteunpunten en het Watersportverbond. Het doel van deze dag is informatie-uitwisseling en het ontwikkelen van het beleid voor de Sector Wedstrijdsport. Tijdens deze dag wordt plenair informatie gegeven en kunt u vier workshops volgen. Op het aanmeldingsformulier kunt u aangeven in welke workshops u wilt participeren (1e t/m 4e keuze en een 5e reserve keuze). In de bijlage treft u het programma, de workshops en een inschrijfformulier. Ik verzoek om deze informatie binnen uw ‘omgeving’ breed te verspreiden, zodat deze uitnodiging alle betrokken personen bereikt.

Tenslotte wens ik u prettige feestdagen en hoop u op 26 januari 2008 te kunnen begroeten!

Mede namens medewerkers en bestuursleden van de Sector Wedstrijdsport,
met vriendelijke groet,
Bart van Breemen
Sectormanager Wedstrijdsport

Bij de workshop zijn een aantal onderwerpen die zeker de moeite waard zijn om te bezoeken. Als je invloed wilt hebben op de ontwikkelingen binnen wedstrijdsport mag je deze dag niet missen.


Third part of a four week series on Mondays. Every week a part of ISAF 100 Questions about the Racing Rules of Sailing; Today part 3; questions 51-75
Answer each question by writing T(=true) or F(=false) after it, and find the appropriate rule.

The last two columns appear to be empty; but if you change the character colour to anything but white, the answers and rules I think are applicable, will appear. But beware, I might be wrong.
NB: These questions are written under the RRS 2001-2004 rulebook. Let me know if you think the answer is different under RRS 2005-2008.

For part 1 go to this post
For part 2 go to this post
For part 4 go to this post

Sunday 23 December 2007

Dummies Guide for Bloggers

To get this blog up and running and maintain my momentum, I've been going a lot to Dummies Guide to Google Blogger Beta. This is an exceptional blog telling dummies like me, how to implement features I would otherwise never have thought off. I'm a layman in the all those html-codes and this blog has helped me tremendously. There are a couple of tricks not perfected yet, but on the whole Vin's posts are a big help. If you've not already found his blog, go have a look.
His layout is a bit chaotic and his fonts are all over the place, but don't let that stop you. His advice is solid. If I knew how to keep it cold, I would buy him that beer he's been asking for.

Saturday 22 December 2007

RULE 18 will change!

In the minutes of the Racing Rule Committee meeting at the Annual ISAF Conference 2007 in Estoril, all the way at the end, you can find a draft of the new rule 18. Changes will come in effect in 2009 in the new rule book after the Olympics. Complete document is here: Racing Rules Committee Minutes for ISAF 2007 Annual Conference.

Section C - At Marks and Obstructions, including rule 18, is extensively rewritten, but so far the basic principle hasn't changed. The inside boat still gets mark-room, which is now added to definitions, to round a mark. I still have to study it closer and of course the final version might be different, but for now the basic skeleton is there. I'll get back to this, when I've reviewed it some more.

One of the bigger changes in the new rule 18 is that the 2 hull-length zone is changed into a 3 hull-length zone. If you have trouble judging distances, this is something you might want to start practicing. You will need that skill, because now there is an added possibility. Race Committees can CHANGE the hull-length zone in the Sailing Instructions! Standard is 3 hull lengths, but in the SI this can be reduced back to 2 hull lengths or increased to 4 hull lengths. My advice to sailors is to start practicing, and find out whether they can judge 3 and 4 on the water already. For clubs, classes and event organizers it is important to start thinking about what they want for their event. Do we stick with the standard 3 or do we - for this class on this lake for this event - decrease or perhaps increase? The recommendation in App. L : Use 2 hull lengths when the racing area is particularly small and use 4 hull lengths when the boats racing are particularly fast.
NB, you cannot change between races, the distance is fixed for the event. You cannot have 3 lengths for one class and another for a different class in the same event. All boats who round the same mark, have to have the same zone.
Again, this is a draft version, the racing rules committee minutes states in response to this submission: Recommendation to Council: Approve with the following amendment; WP (working party) to edit in response to timely suggestions from members of RRC.
It will NOT come in effect until the next rule cycle, in 2009. Please give me your opinion on this specific issue. The final wording still has to be decided. If we find a problem, the RRC is only a mail away.

Friday 21 December 2007


A couple of years ago I had a request for redress because two young sailors were picked up by a rescue-boat. I wrote a piece (in dutch) on it, for our regional sailing association, because the boat received redress and the volunteers on the rescue boat felt they were being second-guessed.
(Hulp RvW 41 v3.doc)
The piece was based on a Guidance published by the RYA, because rule 41 had changed in the rule-book. Rule 41 since 2005 permits help to a boat by rescue, without having to retire from the race as long as there's no progress in the race. I've put up the complete Guidance here and in the FILES list.

Click Here to Read More.. - Removed

Recently changed in this the blog: The expandable Posts have been integrated and the -Click Here to Read More- feature removed. I could not shut it off for Posts who don't have -read more- material. If I find a solution, I might bring it back.
On changing, I've had a RSS-feed subscription button installed in the sidebar, but only a couple of readers have subscribed. I know, I know, I should be patient, but wonder if a E-mail subscription works better? Anyone?

Thursday 20 December 2007

Crystal Balling the ISAF

ISAF ROC Newsletter ISSUE_1_december 2006
The intention is to circulate ROC Newsletters to all Race Officials at least twice a year to highlight matters relevant to all disciplines. These will be an additional communication to existing Judging, Umpiring, Race Management or Measurement communications.

ISAF ROC Newsletter ISSUE_1_december 2007
As part of the ISAF Strategic Plan the Race Officials Committee has decided to write regular newsletters to our Race Officials as one way to improve communications between us.

ISAF ROC Newsletter ISSUE_1_december 2008
The strategic Plan of ISAF dictates we send you a newsletter every month to update Race Officials on current developments.

ISAF ROC Newsletter ISSUE_1_december 2009
ISAF has now opened up a newsletter website to give you weekly feedback on all ROC-issues.

ISAF ROC Newsletter ISSUE_1_december 2010

When will issue 2 be published?
Blog now!

International Umpire Grouping System 2009

ISAF has published a new document on Umpire Grouping for 2009.
Biggest change is the introduction of Subcategories for group 2 into 2a, 2b and 2c. The purpose of this change is to (1) improve the feedback to individual Group 2 IUs about the way their competence is perceived and (2) provide the Race Officials Coordinator with a better basis for composing umpire teams with well-balanced competences. You can read the whole document here.

As I've had no experience with the system, being a NAIU, I wonder what experienced IU think of it. If some of you read this, please leave a comment or mail me. I will also ask when I have the opportunity at an event.
I can understand and support the need for a system providing feedback and evaluation on individual performances, but that should be done as a normal open procedure. I don't like the whole secrecy around it, with the identity of grouping panel kept confidential until the end of the year. Why should you have to wait to hear comments and start work on improving until the end of the year? Isn't it better to hear right away?
I will ask IU's I work with anyway, regardless of there "secret identity". [G]

Wednesday 19 December 2007

Enforcing the Rules

Rereading other peoples thoughts after having some time studying the subject yourself, is suppose to give you new insights. Is that not what learning is about?
I was struck by an observation in "Understanding the Racing Rules of Sailing through 2008" by Dave Perry. It has to do with the Basic Principle in our Racing Rules of Sailing which states: "Competitors in the sport of sailing are governed by a body of rules that they are expected to follow and enforce."
Like most people you start with: Well off course. Sportsmanship, fair play, don't be a sore looser and so on and move on, to the next sentence and to the next page. Rereading it, after Dave Perry, my attention was drawn to the very last word: enforce.... Competitors are expected to enforce the rules.
Unabridged (v 1.1) - en·force /ɛnˈfɔrs, -ˈfoʊrs/
–verb (used with object), -forced, -forc·ing.
1. to put or keep in force; compel obedience to: to enforce a rule; Traffic laws will be strictly enforced.
2. to obtain (payment, obedience, etc.) by force or compulsion.
3. to impose (a course of action) upon a person: The doctor enforced a strict dietary regimen.
4. to support (a demand, claim, etc.) by force: to enforce one's rights as a citizen.
5. to impress or urge (an argument, contention, etc.) forcibly; lay stress upon: He enforced his argument by adding details.

Sailing is a self-policing sport, most protest are done by sailors, not by officials. That's how the rules are set up. In that sailing is unique.
I however was struck by the weight of the word enforce. The Dutch translation in the rule book does not have the same strength as the original English word. How is that in your language? (Look after the break for translations) Is that the word used in your rule book?

Protest are not obligatory. If you are fouled or see someone else break a rule, you don't have to protest. This seems in contradiction with enforcing the rules....

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary (Beta Version)
enforce [inˈfoːs] verb
to cause (a law, a command, one's own will etc) to be carried out
Example: There is a law against dropping litter but it is rarely enforced.
Arabic: يَفْرِض، يُلْزِم
Chinese (Simplified): 实施,执行
Chinese (Traditional): 實施,執行
Czech: uplatnit
Danish: gennemtvinge; håndhæve
Dutch: ten uitvoerbrengen
Estonian: täide viima, jõustama
Finnish: panna täytäntöön
French: appliquer
German: erzwingen
Greek: επιβάλλω, εφαρμόζω
Hungarian: végrehajt
Icelandic: framfylgja
Indonesian: memberlakukan
Italian: applicare
Japanese: 実施する
Korean: 시행하다
Latvian: ieviest, *iedzīvināt (likumu u.tml.)
Lithuanian: vykdyti
Norwegian: håndheve, sette igjennom; innskjerpe
Polish: egzekwować
Portuguese (Brazil): executar
Portuguese (Portugal): executar
Romanian: a aplica
Russian: соблюдать(ся)
Slovak: uplatniť
Slovenian: uveljaviti
Spanish: aplicar, imponer
Swedish: verkställa, driva igenom, upprätthålla
Turkish: uygulamak

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary (Beta Version), © 2000-2006 K Dictionaries Ltd.

Tuesday 18 December 2007

'Flog the Blog' Day (1)

Realized this morning it's my first (tiny) anniversary. Started this blog a month ago on November 18th.
I've "cleaned out the closet" by removing the text from my old website and leaving only a directive to this blog. No going back anymore. Also backed-up a months' worth of posts, on my hard drive.
To "celebrate" this momentous occasion (the likes of which the world has never seen) I thought to promote this day of the month (18th) into a "flog the blog"- day.
You, my readers, are urged on this day to tell me what I'm doing wrong, tell me what you want changed, tell me what you think is an interesting subject to discuss, or just tell me to shut up en get on with it. I'll put a reminder in my calender on the 18th each month and repeat this message.
So please, all you Seymours out there, FEED me!

Monday 17 December 2007


Second part of a four week series on Mondays. Every week a part of ISAF 100 Questions about the Racing Rules of Sailing; Today part 2; questions 26 - 50.
Answer each question by writing T(=true) or F(=false) after it, and find the appropriate rule.

The last two columns appear to be empty; but if you change the character colour to anything but white, the answers and rules I think are applicable, will appear. But beware, I might be wrong.
NB: These questions are written under the RRS 2001-2004 rulebook. Let me know if you think the answer is different under RRS 2005-2008.

For part 1 go to this post
Update: For part 3 go to this post
For part 4 go to this post

Sunday 16 December 2007


I've used Tactical Sailing Solutions (TSS- for short) for a couple of years now, to make situational diagrams for protests. My version was 2.3, and in those years I've periodically looked for updates to the program, without any success. Henri Peronneau, one of the people who created this program, now has a small website. Finally I can download a newer version! This v 2.5B has the now, among other things, the possibility to save as an animated picture (GIF). If you click on the picture the boats start to move. I've used the second protest from Keeping Clear blog to make the animation and it looks great!
If your interested in TSS go to It's shareware so you can try it out for 30 days, before you need to register.

V Open de España Match Race 2008

I've been invited by ISAF to go to "V Open de España" Match Race as an umpire, which will be my first Grade 1. It's in Calpe, about a 100 klicks south of Valencia. On Google Earth I can find two marinas. I still have to receive additional information about the venue, but if its the one on the right it seems to be next to a great big rock, which will no doubt have a severe impact on the wind patterns locally. Does anyone reading this know more? Please leave a comment and tell me. In the mean time I'll have a look at the clubs website and practice Spanish... I already learned my name translates into: Hombre del Clavo!

Saturday 15 December 2007


I've asked and received permission from David Dellenbaugh to post some excerpts from his Newsletter Speed&Smarts
This one is from #99 about rule 16 (changing course). Answers after the break. If you want to know more about the newsletter read this post.

Canadian Yachting Association Website & the RRS

Most Member National Authorities (MNA's) of ISAF - in other words - the Sailing Federations /Associations of each country, have found a place on the WWW. Some of them publish material for local Judges, Race Officers and Umpires. The big countries - like USA, Canada etc - have an extensive program, with many levels of skill and training, certification etc. They also publish quit a lot of material on the rules. In the form of a newsletter or appeals-decisions. When you are studying to become an International Judge this provides a great source of material. One of my favorites is the Canadian Yachting Association. They have an extensive site with a great deal to offer. I've made a file with excerpts from the CYA Judges newsletters with some very interesting rules questions. File: Excerpts CYA Judges Newsletter. The complete newsletters are also worth reading. Go to: and scroll down a bit.
Please do remember that the information is sometimes primarily focusing on national issues - i.e. Canadian prescriptions etc. Nevertheless you can - for study purposes - learn a great deal on the Racing Rules of Sailing.

Friday 14 December 2007

X40 iShares Cup Series 2008 dates

In a new mail today OC events announced there dates for the iShares Cup in 2008:

"OC Events, with the support of iShares and our other partners, are delighted to announce the dates for the 2008 iShares Cup. Confirmed venues will be announced once negotiations with the relevant cities have been completed.
30 May-1 June Switzerland / Italy
13-15 June France
2-4 August UK
29-31 August Germany
19-21 September The Netherlands

In addition to the iShares Cup events, a number of the Extreme 40 campaigns have already noted their intention to be present at other one-off events to complete their full season, such as the Abu Dhabi event in March, pre-event in the days before The Artemis Transat (11 May start) in Plymouth, JPMAM Round the Island Race (Cowes - 28th June), racing in Skandia Cowes Week itself (5th-9th August), and Centomiglia (6th September). All in all an excellent season is planned, with good Return on Investment for all your sponsors."
iShares Cup :: Extreme 40 Sailing Series

I've made a quick scan of the dates in my calender. And of course - Murphy has many cousins - all, yes all the dates coincide with another event, I've already lined up. This will mean - what else is new - if I'm asked to do umpiring at the iShares cup, I will have to forgo some events locally....

In 2008 we aim to continue to grow from the success of 2007 which saw the iShares Cup obtain media coverage in six European countries, hitting an overall media value of nearly £2 million across print, radio and television coverage.

Dedicated features were broadcast on Gillette World of Sport, Seamaster Sailing and Bloomberg TV with a one-off 26-minute programme transmitted on Sky Sports UK, helping to push the iShares Cup out to a wider audience. As did feature articles in national newspapers and magazines including The Sunday Times (UK), de Volkskrant (The Netherlands), La Provence (France) Die Welt (Germany) and many others.

For the iShares Cup in 2008 we are looking at increasing our TV coverage by producing a programme series (details to be finalised and broadcasters to be confirmed) as well as continuing to provide a features and news service to broadcasters.

In summary, OC Events will be offering support to the teams in the following areas:

* PR and media relations activity throughout season
* Media facilities on site at each official event including press boats
* Event communications at each official event
* A TV production service to include a programme series on the iShares Cup, features and news, supply of archive, etc
* Photographic services including access to images
* Info packs for press/VIP guests
* Official race website
* Dedicated team webpage within official website to include team news and updates
* Access to media monitoring website and media clippings
* Craneage, mooring, race management, on the water umpiring.
* Top class VIP hospitality and race village infrastructure

With plans to develop and grow the series in 2008, cost of entry will be 30,000 Euros ex VAT. We have some fantastic venues lined up for 2008 and with 4 teams confirmed we expect the remaining places to be taken up quickly. As you will see when we announce the venues, our aim is to sail in enclosed city locations - this could certainly lead us to limiting the number of boats on the water at any one time, and ultimately in the series. Places therefore will be allocated on a first come first served basis, so please register your interest as soon as possible.

We look forward to receiving your entries on publication of the NOR in the new year and of course should you have any questions do not hesitate to contact us.

The iShares Cup Team

2008 Supplement Match Racing Call Book

ISAF send a mail today with an update to the Match Racing Call book:
2008 Supplement Match Racing Call Book
It addresses two questions about room in a "seamanlike way" and the the dial-down in match racing (rule 16.1 and ISAF Case 21)
1. In the definition of Room, how should the umpires apply the phrase ‘in a seamanlike way’?
2. Blue on port tack and Yellow on starboard tack are on a leg to the windward mark. Yellow bears away to a downwind course that is below her proper course and as a result Blue has to change course to keep clear. There is a Y flag. What should the call be?

Call Book for Match Racing for 2005-2008 supplement January 2008 (Replaces page 30)
Rule 16.1 Changing Course
Definitions Room

Question 1:
In the definition of Room, how should the umpires apply the phrase ‘in a seamanlike way’?
Answer 1
The question is addressed in ISAF Case 21, which refers to ‘extraordinary’ and ‘abnormal’ manoeuvres as being ‘unseamanlike’. However, actions that are not seamanlike in a fleet of many boats may be considered seamanlike in a situation with only two boats. Thus, in match racing some manoeuvres might be considered normal that would be considered abnormal in other racing, and therefore ‘seamanlike way’ should be interpreted somewhat more broadly in match racing.
Any manoeuvre, however, that puts a boat or her crew at unreasonable risk of damage is unseamanlike. The umpires will have to judge each incident on the basis of the boat's actions in relation to the conditions of wind and water that she is experiencing.

Question 2
Blue on port tack and Yellow on starboard tack are on a leg to the windward mark. Yellow bears away to a downwind course that is below her proper course and as a result Blue has to change course to keep clear. There is a Yflag. What should the call be?
Answer 2
Yellow breaks rule 16.1 by not giving Blue room, namely the space to manoeuvre in a seamanlike way. Penalize Yellow.

Thursday 13 December 2007

IU & IJ REPORT FORMS made easy

For Judges and Umpires: I've changed the ISAF Report Forms so that you don't have to circle your numbers anymore. Instead you can just tick off the appropriate box. In Word I use the safety button to switch between typing and ticking off boxes.
Stored under forms: IU_Report Form and IJ_Report Form
As ever, suggestions for improvement are welcome.
For All Race Officials: If you want your site or blog linked, please send me mail or post a comment. The first ones are up and running in the side-bar, a little lower.
Thanks for the idea, Ricardo.

KWS Regelcursus 12/12/2007

Het was prettig dat de regelcursus gisteravond weer in de Kajuit was, een vertrouwde omgeving. Ik vond het een levendige avond met de 41 deelnemers, die ervaringen en standpunten uitwisselden, in het bijzonder in het deel over wedstrijdleiding en de regels. Maar ook de oefening met feiten en conclusies was soms (te) verhit. Het blijft moeilijk om onderscheidt te maken tussen een oefening en een "echt" protest.

In een gesprek na afloop met een aantal deelnemers kwam nog het volgende naar voren: Uit de gegeven situatie in de huiswerkprotesten zijn verschillende mogelijkheden te halen over wat er gebeurd kan zijn. Als oefening moet je eerst één van die mogelijkheden kiezen (verzinnen), daarvan de feiten opschrijven en dan conclusies trekken. Niet het vinden van de waarheid is belangrijk, maar hoe schrijf ik het op een goede manier op.

Ik hoop dat er in het tweede deel onderwerpen bij waren, die aanleiding hebben gegeven tot nadenken. Soms moet je iets nieuws eerst proberen, voordat je besluit dat het niet werkt..... Voor diegene die dat nog eens willen nalezen, heb ik de presentatie na de break neergezet.

Graag tot de volgende keer: Leo-Pieter komt dan vertellen over de ontwikkelingen op Internationaal gebied vanuit zijn positie in de Racing Rules Committee.
(8 Januari 2008; Hotel Amicitia; 20:00 uur)

KWS Cursus Regels voor Wedstrijdzeilen
Wedstrijdcommissie en Regels
Woensdag 12 december 2007
door Jos Spijkerman
KWS Cursus Regels voor Wedstrijdzeilen
Wedstrijdcommissie en Regels
We gaan de RvW doorlopen en stoppen bij relevante regels;
Dit is een discussieavond waarin iedereen zijn/of
haar mening mag geven;
Bedoeld om jullie te stimuleren er bij Wedstrijden aan te denken of iets mee te doen;
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Waarom gebruiken we nooit de Z-vlag?
RYA initiative of Excellence
Uit Deel 1 RvW:
De verantwoordelijkheid voor het besluit van een boot om deel te nemen aan een wedstrijd of door te gaan met wedstrijd-zeilen is voor hemzelf alleen.
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 3 RvW:
RvW 25 Aank.& Wedstrijdbepalingen
Appendix S; werkgroep? I.s.m. RMC?
RvW 26 en 27 Starten, Voor het startsein
Vlag V (blz 287 RvW)
29 Individuele & Algemene Terugroep
Tracking volgend jaar?
30 Buiten om (I), 20% en Zwarte vlag
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 3 RvW:
RvW 32, 33 en 34 Afbreken, afkorten, Baan wijzigen en Ontbrekend merkteken
35 Tijdslimiet en Scores
Test? RCA
36 Opnieuw of Overzeilen
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 4 RvW:
40 Persoonlijk Drijfvermogen
Is dat een protest waard? En zo ja, waarom doen we het dan niet?
41 Hulp van buiten > (e)
Geef je beleid mee aan Stand-By wanneer wel wanneer niet? Is daar overleg over?
Gezien de ontwikkelingen moet PC daarover niet vooraf met Klasse een afspraak over maken?
(44.3 Scorestraf)
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 5 RvW:
60.2 Protesteren tegen een boot
Wanneer vinden jullie dat de WC moet protesteren?
Willekeur bij verschillende evenementen?
Karakter van onze sport?
Wie in het comité moet/kan dat doen?
Mag een Stand-by boot protesteren?
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 5 RvW:
61.1 Op de hoogte brengen
Verschil tussen vereisten voor protest door boot en protest door WC, is dat fair?
Mag de WC aanroepen? Zouden ze dat moeten doen?
Wijzigingen in de WB?
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Uit deel 5 RvW:
62.1 Verhaal
Scoringsverzoek / Clearing?
Indien, dan met tijdslimiet
OCS en bewijslast?
69.1(e) voor 69 nieuwe PC aanstellen
70.3 Vragen aan Nationale Autoriteit
Hoeveel van jullie maken daar gebruik van?
Wedstrijdcommissie heeft met de volgende regels te maken:
Deel 6, Deel 7
Wanneer gaan we wat doen aan leesbaarheid van zeilnummers?
Klassenvoorschriften? Problemen worden op een NK uitgevochten; met alle gevolgen voor het evenement van dien.
Appendix A:
A5 Scoring door WC, alle andere scorings eerst Protest nodig
Appendix F, G, H
Appendix J, K en L
Appendix S
KWS Cursus Regels voor Wedstrijdzeilen
Wedstrijdcommissie en Regels

Ik wens jullie allemaal alvast een goede Kerst een gelukkig Nieuwjaar.
Graag tot ziens op 8 januari in Hotel Amicitia (20:00 uur)

Wednesday 12 December 2007


In the rulebook under appendix G a list is published of all the National Sail Letters. The one currently published (2005-2008) has several flaws. Not surprising, as the world of nationality changes more often than in a cycle of four years. ISAF publishes on their web site a list called Member National Country Codes.
You should think with that, you might be able to update the one in the rule-book. Not so.

The reason I find this necessary for judging, has to do with an incident several years back when I went to an International Grade 1 event as a National Judge to get experience. I think this was in 2004, at the (then still called) SPA regatta. Together with two experienced IJ's I was on the water to do Immediate Penalties for breaking Rule 42 ( Appendix P).
We observed a laser (sorry Tillerman) perform his kinetics and decided that we would give him a yellow flag. The Laser had the letters CZE in his sail. I was the designated whistler and "flagger" for that race and - being not absolutely sure - asked the others, this is Czechoslovakia, correct? No answer.....
The rubber speeded up to get to a place where we could flag. Again I asked and the others nodded. I whistled and shouted to the sailor his nationality and sail number, while waiving the yellow flag. The sailor looked back and started his turns. While he was doing this, he was talking out loud and seem to swear. This is not altogether unusual. Most people don't like to be caught and punished.

After his gybe he shouted something towards us, but we didn't understand what. Getting closer he shouted again: "Czech Republic!" at the top of his lungs. Right..... we fell silent and realized he wasn't cross for getting caught, but because we identified him with the wrong nationality!

Let me make clear that this was my mistake and I apologized as soon as I was able. But the deed was done. Since then I make it a habit of going trough the boatpark, trying to find as many nationalities as I can, to learn them before I go on the water.

I've since then found a few who are not in the rule book and also not on the MNA list. For example, do you know what SCG stands for?

If you know others, please let me know. I don't want to get shouted at, again.

Tuesday 11 December 2007


Posted on Desert Sea by Pat a comprehensive list for Race officers on Race Equipment.
This is the one you always were planning to make, but never came around to. You can also pester the treasurer for money for that one essential item you need, because it's now written down and every other club has it.

Update: 12 dec; 00:08 h; Pat has graciously donated his Race Equipments files! I'll be sorting them out and will put them under FILES asap, so you can download a doc or xls - file. Thanks Pat!
Its now well past midnight over here, so I'm off to bed for now.....

Monday 10 December 2007


To get some sort of sequence going, I'll try to post a “Test” on Mondays in the coming 4 weeks. Every week a part of ISAF 100 Questions;
Today part 1; questions 1 - 25
Answer each question by writing T(=true) or F(=false) after it, and find the appropriate rule.

The last two columns appear to be empty; but if you change the character colour to anything but white, my answers and rules I think are applicable, will appear. But beware, I might be wrong.
NB: These questions are written under the RRS 2001-2004 rulebook. Let me know if you think the answer is different under RRS 2005-2008

update: for part 2 go to this post
update: for part 3 go to this post
update: for part 4 go to this post

Sunday 9 December 2007


Deep within the bowels of the extensive improved ISAF-website it is still available. You have to dig because the search box gives you too many hits when you type in "English Words", but it's there! Written by Jim Capron in 2003 - so it is one rule-cycle out of date - but useful for IJ-seminar participants from other than English speaking countries nevertheless.
I’m talking about: English Words Used in the International Judges Examination.
I’ve made a copy of the words in an excel-file and started to translate. Care to improve the file and do the same for your native language? Have a go in P-words V2.xls
Please send me the results.

Dick Rose

American Rules Expert Dick Rose publishes articles about the rules in Sailing World. Usually because of questions from readers. You can have a look at his latest piece titled: What Happens When Rule 18 Doesn’t Apply?
It explains a 3 boat situation approaching a windward mark.

He also has a clear explanation about when a penalty is beginning.
The archive goes back a bit - his first article is from Oct 2001 - but still good reading. Good graphics too.
The only criticism I have is that he names the boats after a person. Persons are not protested, boats are. People on board represent the boat in a protest..... Or am I now being pedantic?

Saturday 8 December 2007


IMG_2739, originally uploaded by RRS Look to Windward.

I've just set up a Flickr-account to publish photo's to my blog.
If you follow the link you'll see all the photo's Vincent has made on the last day of the National Championship 2007 in the "Flitsklasse".
It was held at our local club KWV Langweer with a Medalrace and all.
On the photo Flits 1102 with helm Laurens Hanselaar and crew Steven Sijperda with the championship pennant flying. Well done!

(Now I have to buy a camera myself.....)


As promised in this post I’m coming back to the issue of identity in the protest room.
We asked our MNA's appeal board, in the Netherlands it’s called “Zeilraad”, in accordance with rule 70.3, a couple of questions about the obligations of the PC.
- Does a PC have to check if a sail number on the form is correct?
- Do they have to check if someone in the hearing is in fact a competitor?
I’ve uploaded two files: The original Dutch answers and a translation in English. Have a look at HB 04-07_NED or HB 04-07_ENG.
As to the first question: Sailors beware! You might want to check that protest form again.

Friday 7 December 2007

Race Committee Acumen - Test

I've invited my old IJ study group - from way back then (2004 ) - to have a look at my blog. One of them, who was always quick back then too, responded immediately. He came back with an E- mail. As promised Hugh, posted already:
“Attached is a quiz given at the Moosehead Awards Lunch. I have started it off with one of the answers supplied by a race officer. The Moosehead Awards are given by the Yacht Racing Association of Long Island Sound and commemorate spectacularly poor performance by race committees.”
So Ro's, go take the Race Committee Acumen - Test and send me your answers, the best ones get posted.

update: 11 dec; fixed the link; apologies for that


As a Race committee we communicate with sailors by hoisting flags on the starting vessel. Nothing to it, each flag has it's meaning and with a little effort, we can easily tell a whole story. Right?

Can anyone tell me what this RC is up to?

Thursday 6 December 2007

Keeping Clear

It seems I have started up something; local umpires are coming out of the woodwork: Frank Koornstra - whom I umpired with at the Braassem - started his own blog and has called it Keeping Clear. What was the saying again: "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."?
He's a very keen trainee who wants to become an umpire. I have no doubt he will succeed, when he keeps up with this pace. Good luck with that, Frank!
Oh, and in line with the rules: By naming you blog, you are now the "keep clear" boat. So, give me some "wiggle" room! [EG]

(No longer on the internet! What's up with that, Frank? tired of blogging? red)


Van een van de deelnemers aan de BWO-cursus kreeg ik een vraag of er meer mogelijkheden waren om regelkennis te testen. Het Watersportverbond heeft op de site de vragen uit Schipper van Henk Plaatje neergezet. Doormiddel van flash-animaties wordt de situatie beschreven en in tekst vragen gesteld. Ook de antwoorden en een toelichting zijn vermeld.
Ga naar
Met deze 82 vragen kun je voorlopig wel even vooruit.

Wednesday 5 December 2007

2007 iShares Cup on Sky Sports!

This year I was given the opportunity to umpire twice during the iShares cup (Marseille and Amsterdam). I've received an E-mail today announcing a tv-special on Sky Sports - which I can't receive unfortunately. For all of you who can, here are the particulars:

See all the action from the 2007 iShares Cup Extreme 40 sailing series on Sky Sports next week [full timings below]. The 30-minute programme is presented by Dame Ellen MacArthur and gives viewers the chance to see all of the hair-raising moments from this fast-paced sailing series.

Tune in for all the drama of the iShares Cup Extreme 40 season including team Basilica's impressive sweep of the series and the battle for second-place between BT Better World and the Dutch team of Holmatro. France's legendary sailor Franck Cammas puts in a star appearance in Marseille whilst double Olympic gold medallist Shirley Robertson joined in mid-series and experienced some exhilarating and near catastrophic moments onboard JPMorgan Asset Management, whilst the US team of Tommy Hilfiger swept the board in the fashion stakes! Plus the skippers and crew provide an inside look at how these boats are raced at close-quarters.

Held across four Europe's destinations - Munich, Marseille, Cowes and Amsterdam - the 2007 iShares Cup brought together many of the worlds best sailors from the America's Cup, Olympics and offshore ocean racing circuit. The Extreme 40 fleet raced on a mix of challenging racecourses from the open sea off Marseille and Cowes, Lake Starnberg and a canal the size of a football pitch in Amsterdam. This series drew spectator crowds at all locations and there crowds were never disappointed.

Get a sneak preview of the programme here!

The 2007 iShares Cup Extreme 40 sailing series was also supported by official timekeeper, Omega, and the crews celebrated their wins courtesy of official champagne supplier, G.H. Mumm.

iShares Cup Extreme 40 Sailing Series programme will be broadcast on Sky Sports as follows:
12 December 18:00 Sky Sports Xtra
12 December 22:30 Sky Sports 3
13 December 01:30 Sky Sports 2
13 December 10:30 Sky Sports 3

More information on the circuit can be found at

We umpired under addendum Q. And oh boy, did we need rule 19.1 in Amsterdam .
I hope Sky will be able to show the hair raising moments there.

The Dark Site

Someone - anonymous - commented on the dark background of my blog and asked why I did this, as he or she had trouble reading the posts.... To be sure, I like this template, but perhaps you - my visitors - don't. If you would care to leave your opinion, please use the comments button.
I'll keep fiddling with this weblog until things are better. Please remember, I'm new at this and still have a lot to learn.


I've fiddled with a couple of forms for you today. Arriving at an event, it is my experience that half of the time a proper protest hearing schedule-form is something the organisers haven't thought of. And why should they? The PC is suppose to be independent and should keep their own records... So to print, here are a Protesthearingschedule.xls (ENG) and a Protestbehandelingsschema.xls (NED)
In Excel you can store several worksheets in one file. You can switch sheets by the tabs at the bottom. In this file I’ve made an English and a Dutch version of the same schedule. Both files are actually the same, only start up in a different worksheets.
This basic form you can change it to your liking. If you do it before you travel, you can add the name of the event and stuff like that. Or use your laptop. It is however likely that at the event the possibility to print is limited, so bring a couple of forms with you, to publish on the notice board. After end of protest time I usually fill in this form and before publishing I make a copy for the panel to record the decisions. Afterwards you publish that, after copying one for the scorers. Don’t forget to record the time of publishing! Their might be requests for redress or re-opening….

Tuesday 4 December 2007


Since I started this blog, I've discovered a whole new world out "there". I've tried to find other blogs who write about the RRS, but so far I have found only incidental posts on sailing blogs or websites. But I'm sure I haven't even visited half of them.
A very good sailing blog and one of the first I stumbled upon, was
Proper Course written by Tillerman. He now has done a post on me and listed Look to Windward among his sailing blogs. The increase in traffic is clearly visible in Google Analytics. Thanks Tillerman!
If there are any other blogs or sites who want to link to this one, please feel free to do so. If you drop me a mail or comment I'll have look and see if I can return this courtesy.
I'm especially interested in blogs who focus or at least have a more than passing interest in the rules.

Monday 3 December 2007


In preparation for an IJ Seminar, candidates are send a Quick-Test. I've made a pdf-file of mine and you can download it here.
As in the written IJ-Test, you are allowed to use your rulebook, but I suggest you try it once without. Just to find out how good your rules-knowledge actually is....
I'm not going to publish answers, but if you want to discuss a particular question, feel free to E-mail me, or use the comments button.

Sunday 2 December 2007

BWO 2007

Voor alle deelnemers aan de BWO 2007 heb ik nog een pdf file geplaatst over Verzoek om Verhaal. Tijdens de middag hadden we geen tijd deze dia's nog te laten zien. Hierbij alsnog (link)
Naast het onderzoek of een boot recht heeft op verhaal, moet een Protest commissie ook altijd onderzoek doen naar wat een boot krijgt als een verhaal wordt toegekend. Dan is niet alleen de score van de boot van belang, maar ook hoe het de andere boten in de wedstrijd beïnvloed.
De PC moet een oplossing vinden die het "eerlijks" is voor alle boten, ongeacht of ze om verhaal hebben gevraagd of niet. Lees RvW 64.2 en A10 nog een keer, voordat je een beslissing neemt. De wedstrijd afbreken is naar mijn mening zo'n beetje het slechtste wat de PC kan doen. Dat is echt het laatste waar je op uitkomt, als alle andere oplossingen hebben gefaald.

Friday 30 November 2007


A beautiful site with perfect video's! Done by US Sailing
All the basic rules explained. You can even take a test to see how well you know them.
Have a look at


Today another pair of forms for your PC or Laptop. These are two templates of the protest-form in Word (doc) format. PCtemplate 1 is the front and PCtemplate 2 is the back side of a standard protest form, with pre-arranged fields for all blank spaces. If you are able to bring a lap top to the protest room, one of the panel members can use this form to write all relevant information directly into the form, during the hearing.
Big advantage is that after the hearing is finished, you'll have a printable protest-outcome which can be handed over to the competitor if he or she asks for it (in writing RRS 65.2).
Also added a sheet with boat pictures which can be placed into that word document. This protest diagram kit was made by Angelo Buscemi. He explains how to use it on the first pages. Not only boats are provided but also pages with different places on the race course, i.e. starting line or leeward mark. A finished diagram looks like this:

To be as perfect as this, might take a couple of hours practice, but the result is impressive. By click-and-hold on the handles of each boat you can easely change even the size!

Thursday 29 November 2007


RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PROTEST COMMITTEES. With Further Advisory Notes from the RYA Racing Rules Committee
When it is possible that a party may not know a member of the protest committee, introduce and name the protest committee members (including yourself) when asking for objections. At regattas with many hearings before the same protest committee, type the name of each member in 24 pt across the middle of a piece of paper and fold and tape it into a ‘toblerone’ shape to put as a name-plate in front of each protest committee member. It will speed the introductions. If a protest committee member is a Regional, National or International Judge, you might add the initials RJ, NJ or IJ to the name. While only the parties are entitled to be present, it is good policy to agree to requests from others to observe, on the understanding that they can say nothing, that they sit behind (and so out of eye contact with) the parties, and that they cannot then be called as witnesses. When a protest involves children, the presence of a parent as observer is desirable, if only so that the parent can appreciate that the procedure was correct and any penalty was appropriate on the facts found.

This piece goes trough Appendix M with commentary from the RYA Racing Rules Committee.
Very usefull information. You can find the complete piece under FILES.

Wednesday 28 November 2007

E-mail test

This is a test message send from E-mail directly to my blog to see if it’s published and how. I’ll even attach a small picture to see if it’s picked up.
If this works I’ll be able to send from anywhere, even from my phone!

AC 33

If you want to read the court decision about the 33th AC, have look at:
The entire decision from the Judge is online at the Golden Gate Yacht Club site.
I keep thinking, any International Jury panel would have done it in a lot less time and with a 10th of the fuss and paperwork, to decide what: "having for its annual regatta on the sea or arm of the sea" means.. But what do I know.....



Today - November 28th - the world match tour final match race event is starting in Pulau Duyong, Terengganu, Malaysia. This event will decide the winner for 2007. They have a nice website for the MONSOON CUP.

It’s only a pity the information on the rules, how match racing is done and the video's are a couple of years out of date. I've spotted several crucial mistakes... Hopefully the event umpires are better up to speed. Have a look at the videos and see if you can find what is wrong with them.


I've added a new list to the blog site where I'll store the different forms in use for protest work.
First of course the "standard" protest forms you can print. Please remember that - unless it's specifically written into the SI - any paper handed in to the protest-desk is to be considered a protest, as long as it complies with RRS 61.2. Validity is never determined by the person sitting at that desk, always by the protest committee/jury. Even papers handed in hours after end of protest time, should not be refused, there might be a valid reason why the form was handed in so late. Also, once a form is handed in, a party cannot withdraw a protest, without the permission of the committee.

Een nieuwe lijst op de blog site. Daar komen de verschillende formulieren die in gebruik zijn voor protest werk.
Als eerste een standaard protestformulier voor afdrukken. Onthoud echter dat elk als zodanig beschreven papier - tenzij specifiek omschreven in de wedstrijdbepalingen - als een protest moet worden aangenomen, zo lang het voldoet aan de voorwaarden uit RvW 61.2. Geldigheid mag nooit bepaald worden door de persoon die het protest aanneemt, altijd door het protest comité/jury. Zelfs wanneer het formulier uren na het einde van de protesttijd wordt ingeleverd, mag het niet worden geweigerd. Er kan een geldige reden zijn waarom het zo laat werd ingeleverd. Ook, wanneer een formulier is ingeleverd, mag een partij het niet terugtrekken, zonder toestemming van het protest comité/jury.

Tuesday 27 November 2007


Interactive and in 3 levels of difficulty. Most of you will have found this site by now.
For all new sailors and judges, you can study the rules by answering Uli Finckh's Rulesquiz

Monday 26 November 2007


At our annual sailing event in 2007 we had a very strange protest - a sailor came up to me on the fourth day claiming he was not aware that he had been involved in a protest and could I tell him why he was given a DSQ. This on itself is not very strange, as many protest are done under rule 63.3(b) After studying the papers I told him what the committee had found as fact and their decision. The sailor was very surprised because he wasn't involved in the hearing. On the protest form however his boat was represented by such and so. How was this possible?
After I asked the panel chairman to join us, we quickly came to the conclusion that someone else had pretended to represent his boat. Further investigation revealed that this person wasn't even a competitor but a total bystander. There was even a witness claiming to have sailed on the same boat!
After a lot of discussion in the jury morning meeting, we decided to
ask around if we could find the culprits. No luck.
We investigated the rest of the week without success.

What do you think?
If the presence of the true representative was not unavoidable and
there was no reason to reopen on those grounds, do you think the panel should?
Or should the committee find that they may have made a mistake (RRS 66) and reopen the protest on those grounds?

Give me your opinion. We asked our national Appeal Board for the answers. I'll publish them in a couple of days.

Continued in this post


The Port Of Bristol was once famous for importing tobacco, sherry, chocolate and .....slaves. Slave ships smelled and could bring disease. They were not allowed into port until they were cleaned and made tidy (tides are predictable and ordered). Before entering Bristol, slave ships were rigorously inspected so as to be ship shape and Bristol fashion. Even once tied up at the quay, sailors would not be allowed ashore until the vessel had slewed her yards, swinging them inboard so as not to obstruct passing ships and quayside buildings. No cock up crew was allowed ashore until each had cleared his yardarm to a neatly braced order.

In Portsmouth, floozies would come aboard naval vessels to aid ship morale. Shore leave was often forbidden for fear that pressed men (landlubbers who were forced into service by press gangs) would desert. Each morning the petty officer would shout for the occupants of hammocks to show a leg. If the leg was smooth and shapely, the lady was allowed to sleep in; if the leg was hairy, the officer turned out the hammock for the sailor to swab the deck. Hammocks were not really suited to the activities of these ladies and most preferred to work in the spaces between the guns. The gun decks also offered convenient spaces (with suitable rings) for child-birth. Children born on the gun decks could never be certain of their father and were entered in the Deck Log as son of a gun. The gun deck and the four deck rings for each canon were also useful for tying men to be flogged over a barrel. Sailors referred to this predicament as being married to the gunner's daughter, from which there was no respite.

The text above is from a piece I found somewhere on the www when I started studying for international exams.
Not only does it explain what things mean, but it gives you also some insight in where a particular word originated from. (see under FILES: Glossary of Sailing Terms)

Other sites with explanations and glossary:

Sunday 25 November 2007


When I started out as a draftsman - I work at an architectural firm - we used to draw on boards with big rulers with pencils and rötring pens. You know, those wriggly building plans. On that board we also used a lot of templates for lettering and fixed symbols. I had a bag full of those in my cabinet.
Nowadays we draw only on the computer. Chasing a pointer on a 22 inch screen all day long. In the picture you'll find a credit card sized template for drawing protest diagrams. Complete with different sizes of boats, wind- and current direction arrow, marks and scales for circles. This one I haven't used yet, as I just bought it, but am eager to try out. Perhaps I'm a bit nostalgic?

Update: You can buy this template from John Doerr (download a page with his Retail Items here)
Update: 2011/02/25 No longer available (Link removed)

Friday 23 November 2007


Kreeg vandaag in de mijn mailbox de eerste "Holland" Regatta Nieuwsbrief.
Blijkt dat Breitling al na één jaar afscheid heeft genomen van het evenement. Ben benieuwd hoe de Regatta volgend jaar gaat heten.... Oh, in 2008 is het evenement vanaf woensdag 21 tot en zondag 25 mei.

Thursday 22 November 2007


In New Zealand they can do one better! Not satisfied with 3 windward marks they use 4 in the New Zealand Match Racing Championship. Click on the picture to read the relevant SI.

ISAF (1)

Learned a new abbreviation tonight. "NAIU" which stands for: "Newly Appointed International Umpire". ISAF informed me in a mail today that the grouping criteria are based on performance when acting as an International Umpire. NAIUs have not acted as IUs yet, and therefore the grouping criteria cannot be applied. For that reason I'm "ungroupable" until November next year.

IU's are grouped in one of three categories: group 1, group 2 and ungrouped. There's a short paragraph in the Umpire's manual about this grouping:
"The grouping system divides international umpires into groups that reflect their competence in top-level match racing events. The system was introduced to facilitate the process of selecting appropriate umpire teams for the events that ISAF appoints umpires to (listed in regulation 18.12) and to provide a basis for developing individual international umpires."

Hopefully the ISAF can get me a place into a Grade 1 event next year, but it they are now in the last stage of the appointments, so no guarantees.....

Wednesday 21 November 2007


One of the best rules quizzes I've seen on my Internet travels can be found HERE. Done by UK Halsey Sailmakers. They update the quiz regularly with new situations. The trick of course is, to first write out your own facts, before looking at the answers.
Very good animations!

Als je een Nederlandse site wilt bezoeken die ook met geanimeerde plaatjes werkt, kijk dan naar de site van Henk Plaatje. Elke maand een nieuwe test en uitleg over nog veel meer, ook BPR.

Tuesday 20 November 2007


I'm currently trying to find out more about body-language as a means to determine if someone is telling the truth in the protest room. I found a page with a few pointers
Most of us use unconsciously the signals someone sends trough his/her body to tell if we trust or like a person. If he or she tells the story what happened on the water we credit not only the words, but also the way they are expressed. At least I know I do.
And all a protest committee has to do, when told two different stories about an incident, is to decide who to believe and who not. There’s no burden of proof.

In a lecture I gave to a group of national judges recently, we had a heated discussion about this. Some in the group were very adamant that this should not be a factor in believing what was said, while others used body-language as a means to pick up on a lie.
I'll try to find out more and will get back to it in this blog - perhaps even talk to someone who does interviewing or interrogation as a profession.

Monday 19 November 2007


At the Ladies Only Match Race 2007 in Hamburg, where I was participating as an umpire some weeks back, the Race Management tried something new.
On lake Alster, in the centre of the City, they have a lot of wind shifts. The saying at the Hamburg Sailing Club is: "When someone opens a window in one of the hotels along the shore, the direction of the wind will change"

To be able react quickly to each shift they laid out 3 top marks in different colours. (green, red and yellow). Together with the preparatory-signal a coloured flag was shown indicating which mark for that match, was to be rounded. They could change for each match without any time loss. The mark boat could even change the position of a mark without waiting, just by only towing the one which was not in use for that particular match. And a RC-boat could indicate a change of top mark at the gate, if needed.

The only disadvantage we experienced was that the sailors had something extra to remember. And of course sometimes they didn't and rounded the wrong one. But overall the sailors were very positive. Time loss between flights was less and no races had to be abandoned because of shifts.

I’ve seen systems with two top marks but never with three. Maybe something to consider for your next match race?

UPDATE: in this post


Speed & Smarts is a newsletter by David Dellenbaugh for racing sailors.
Many useful how-to tips to race faster and smarter. From tactics to rules, from reading the course to rounding marks. You can subscribe to the magazine or read some of the articles on-line. Very good, also for race officials.

Sunday 18 November 2007


De definitie uit de Regels voor Wedstrijdzeilen
Veel gehoorde uitspraken in de protestkamer:
  • “ Ik heb de andere boot toch niet geraakt?”
  • “ Hij hoefde niet af te vallen, ik kon er makkelijk voor langs”
  • “ Zijn punt kwam aan lij zo dicht langszij, dat ik niks meer kon doen”
  • “ Als ik had opgeloefd was ik te vroeg over de lijn geweest”
Deze uitspraken hebben allen te maken met het begrip vrij blijven uit de Regels voor Wedstrijdzeilen. Blijkbaar zijn er over deze definitie nog veel misverstanden. Eerst maar eens de letterlijke tekst uit het regelboekje:

Vrij blijven: Een boot blijft vrij van een andere als de andere zijn koers kan zeilen zonder de noodzaak van uitwijkende handelingen en, wanneer de boten over dezelfde boeg een overlap hebben, als de lijwaartse boot in beide richtingen van koers kan veranderen zonder onmiddellijk in aanraking te komen met de loefwaartse boot.

In elke verhouding tussen twee boten is er één die voorrang heeft en één die vrij moet blijven. (Ik laat de beperkingen uit regels 14 t/m 18 even buiten beschouwing)
De definitie is geschreven vanuit het standpunt van de boot met voorrang. Deze moet kunnen zeilen bijna alsof de andere boot er niet was. Het eerste recht van de voorrangsboot zit in “zonder noodzaak van uitwijkende handelingen”.
Op het moment dat de boot met voorrang het gevoel krijgt “dit gaat niet goed- ik moet iets doen” is de noodzaak om ontwijkend te handelen al bijna aanwezig. Een paar seconden daarna zal de boot met voorrang al handelen. Hij voelt de noodzaak. Op dat moment is de andere boot volgens de regels NIET vrij gebleven en overtreedt hij daarmee al één van de vier voorrangsregels. Zolang die noodzaak er niet is blijft de andere boot vrij. Natuurlijk zal niet elke stuurman die noodzaak op hetzelfde moment ervaren. De een heeft nu eenmaal een betere “boothandeling” dan de ander. Toch is de regel geschreven met – het voordeel van de twijfel naar de boot met voorrang. In een SB-BB protest moet de BB boot aantonen dat die noodzaak er absoluut niet was. Als daar twijfel over is, zal de SB-boot het protest winnen.

Aanvullend daarop heeft de boot met voorrang nog een voorrecht. Bij twee boten die een overlap hebben en die vlak naast elkaar zeilen zal de lijwaartse boot nu niet direct de noodzaak voelen om ontwijkend te handelen. Hij is immers niet direct in gevaar om geraakt te worden. Daarom is in de definitie ook opgenomen dat hij moet kunnen sturen – naar loef en naar lij – zonder onmiddellijk in aanraking te komen met de andere boot. Anders zou door de nabijheid van de andere boot, de lijboot als het ware gedwongen worden rechtdoor te varen en dat is een beperking die niet past bij een boot die voorrang heeft.

Weersomstandigheden, boottype en alle andere omgevingsfactoren zullen invloed hebben op de afstand die boten onderling houden. In een zeerace met hoge golven is dat anders dan tussen twee J22’s op de Braassem. De definitie is juist geschreven zodat daarmee rekening gehouden kan worden. Als de definitie was geschreven met een bepaalde afstand – bijvoorbeeld een halve scheepslengte – zou dat in veel gevallen als teveel en in andere gevallen als te weinig ervaren worden.

Als boten elkaar raken heeft de boot die moest vrij blijven al een regel overtreden VOORDAT er contact was. Hij is daarvoor al niet “vrij gebleven”.

Protest Conclusion & Decision Wordings

In the Jury room we all struggle with getting the protest done quickly. But we do want the writing to be accurate and clear. Jörn Richter and Pat Healy started a file a couple of years back, with "standard" wordings, you can use for writing conclusions and decisions, based on the Racing Rules for Sailing. I've added to this and made a Dutch translation, so has Eric Mehlbaum. Adriaan Bauder has made a German translation in the beginning of 2007.
The file can be downloaded HERE (version 5)

Example conclusion:
Rule 17.1: X established a leeward overlap from clear astern within two lengths of Y and while remaining overlapped, sailed above her proper course without passing astern.
Rule 17.2: X, not on a beat to windward and within two lengths to windward of Y, steering a course to leeward, sailed below her proper course and did not gybe.

If you have improvements or can make a translation please contact me and I will publish the "upgraded" version.

Bewoordingen voor Protest Conclusies en Beslissingen
In de Protestkamer willen we allemaal het protest snel afhandelen. Maar we willen ook dat de feiten, conclusie en beslissing accuraat en helder op papier komen te staan. Jorn Richter en Pat Healy zijn een aantal jaren geleden begonnen om voor de conclusies en beslissingen standaard bewoordingen uit de regels voor wedstrijdzeilen te verzamelen. Ik heb toevoegingen en een Nederlandse vertaling gemaakt samen met Eric Mehlbaum. Adriaan Bauder heeft begin dit jaar (2007) een Duitse vertaling opgesteld.
Het bestand kun je HIER ophalen. (versie 5)

Voorbeeld conclusies:
Regel 17.1: X verkreeg een lijwaartse overlap vanaf vrij achter, binnen twee romplengtes van Y en, terwijl de overlap bleef bestaan, zeilde boven haar juiste koers zonder achter Y langs te passeren
Regel 17.2: X, niet op een kruisrak en binnen twee romplengtes van een lijwaarts sturende boot Y, zeilde beneden haar juiste koers zonder te gijpen

Als je verbeteringen hebt of een vertaling neem dan contact op met mij, dan zorg ik voor de publicatie van de "upgraded" versie.

KWS Regelcursus 13/11/2007

Voor all deelnemers aan de KWS Regelcursus 2007-2008
Hierbij mijn lijstje met de samenvatting van de Protestprocedure:

Richtlijn Protestbehandeling
  • partijen op de hoogte? (mededelingen)
  • kopies aanwezig?
  • alle partijen aanwezig? Anders RvW63.3(b)
  • bezwaar tegen een van leden?
  • Voldoende gegevens op form? [RvW61.2 of 62.1]
  • Op tijd ingediend? Zo niet goede reden? [RvW61.3 of 62.2]
  • Was protesteerder betrokken bij incident? [RvW60.1(a)]
  • Protest geroepen en vlag gezet? [61.1(a)]
  • protesteerder op de hoogte gebracht? [63.5]
  • JA: ga door; NEEN: ongeldig verklaren
  • verhoor: eerst protesteerder dan de tegenpartij [63.6]
  • gelegenheid elkaar vragen te stellen
  • daarna vragen van protestcomiteleden
  • zekerheid in verhalen voordat getuige(n) worden oproepen
  • beslissing over het horen van getuige is aan partijen
  • andere relevante verklaringen
  • slotverklaring
  • stel feiten vast / maak een tekening [63.6]
  • bepaal regels die zijn overtreden en conclusie
  • baseer beslissing op vastgestelde feiten [RvW64]
  • breng partijen op de hoogte van feiten en beslissing [65]
Print bovenstaande lijstje en plak het achter in je Regelboekje, dan heb je altijd de procedure bij de hand.


This First Post is the text from my "old" website; If you want to visit use this linkSome of the files I've also included in the files-list (upper right). The rest is still available on the old site.
Update: 18/12/07; Don't visit unless you want to be directed back again.
There's nothing there anymore, I've "cleaned out the closet" so to speak.

Removed some files (part of) on the request of the author.
I hope to receive some alternatives.

It has been some time, but I’ve received some feedback from “students” which has prompting me to do something about the site.
A Turkish Judge wanted to know the answers to the Test-Questions in my posting from 09/12/05 (see just below).
I’ve put them in a small file which can be found (removed)
Remember, these are my “best guesses”, there is no definitive answer given…

Good luck to all students for the upcoming seminar in Belgium..

I’ve scanned a couple examination TEST questions from 2004:
1. Test-Questions as they are used on a seminar (pdf-file)
2. Two more questions in the same style (doc) with my answers

In the last couple of years I’ve studied the rules intensively, firstly to become a better judge, but also to pass the International Judges examination. The ISAF judges seminars are great but the candidate who wants to pass, needs to have his or her homework done beforehand.
One of the factors which make the examination particularly difficult is the language-barrier, for al those who don’t speak English as a mother tongue. So being able to read test questions and understanding quickly what is asked and what is not, is an essential skill, because there is not enough time to reread. And the examination time is two and a half hours….
I’ve suggested in the evaluation after my seminar (in October 2004) that the ISAF should make available some “practice- questions” for candidates who want to attend, by publishing them on the ISAF-site. But until now nothing materialized. It’s difficult to make good questions for the examinations and always there are not enough, but still.

I’ve made a shortlist of files I’ve gathered in the years and making them available to anybody with access to the Internet. I’m also planning to scan my seminar papers and publishing those as well.

At the moment these files are available:
RRS 2005-2008; Official Rules from the ISAF (link)
  1. PowerPoint presentation Rule 18 Workshop; a new approach (ppt-file)
  2. How well do you know the new 2005-2008 racing rules of sailing, by David Dellenbaugh (word-doc or link)
  3. US Sailing Judges Workshop study questions (pdf-file)
  4. RRS2005 compared to RRS 2001, all the changes highlighted if you make revisions visible (word-doc)
  5. Glossary of Sailing Terms (htm-page)
  6. 100 ISAF Study questions (word doc)
Also a list of links to useful or interesting sites:
  1. A very good interactive rules Quiz, by UK-Halsey Sailmakers (link)
  2. Yacht racing Site with useful info including a glossary of sailing terms (link)
  3. 2005-08 RRS Rules Quizzes - Test your knowledge and understanding of the 2005-08 Racing Rules of Sailing with these Rules Quizzes. No.1 - Answer
  4. All about Team racing rules with PowerPoint presentations (link)

I try to work on this list at least once a week, so please check back now and then. And if you are preparing for the IJ-examination try to contact the other candidates and start a study-group. It was a great help in my preparations. I’ve passed the exam and ISAF approved my application in November 2005. And don’t hesitate to E-mail if you have questions.

All files have been found searching the Internet, have been submitted by the authors, or have been written by myself. If someone does not agree on the use of his or her material on this site, please send an E-mail to and I will promptly remove the file.

Good luck in your studies,
In case you are wondering why there are 'older' posts then this FIRST POST, the explanation is simple: I parked some permanent pages with information or link-lists before this one. You can mostly reach them with a link on the home page. Or they are TEST posts, to be used as archive or backup. Sometimes it is easier to copy - paste from a post, with the HTML-code already written, then start again from scratch.....

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