Monday 25 April 2011

Messages - a situation at a windward mark

Boris Kuzminov is asking me about a situation at a windwark mark trough his facebook page
Messages - a situation on windward mark: "- Verzonden met Google Toolbar"

The situation is in a friendly Match Race between the Blue and Yellow boat, and it looks like Blue wants to slow down the other, but that does not succeed.
See also

Right, this is how I see this:

In position one, Blue enters the zone (which should have been two hull lenghts in a MR) clear ahead. That means that she's entitled to mark room. Besides that, she's also right of way boat.

In position two, Blue is still entitled to mark room - she has luffed but has not passed head to wind - and Yellow still must keep clear.

In position three; the same applies. Blue is ROW either under rule 11 or under rule 12. Yellow is still keep clear boat.

In position four, Blue is no longer right of way boat. She becomes keep clear boat under rule 11. She's still however entitled to mark-room. If she is taking that Mark room she shall be exonerated for not keeping clear under rule 11, a rule in section A (RRS 18.5(a))

Because Blue never passes head to wind, so the second sentence in rule 18.2(c) never applies, she keeps being entitled to mark- room. Rule 18.3 also never applies because boats are not approaching the mark on opposite tacks.

In position five the boom of Blue is touching Yellow. Blue does not keep clear. Having mark-room she must be able to sail to the mark and sail her proper course at the mark. Yellow is preventing her from doing that.
Therefore Blue is exonerated for not keeping clear and Yellow penalized for not giving mark-room

Yellow Penalty.

Sunday 24 April 2011

Waiting for Wind; Easterregatta in Sneek

It's Sunday the 24th of April and I'm on the Sneekermeer waiting for wind.

As RO for the Easterregatta at my local club the KWS. The lake is like a mirror most of the time, only a few wisps now and then. Certainly not enough to start the 8 classes participating in this event.

I imagine every Race Officer has days like this. Hanging around ashore at information or on the starting vessel, waiting for wind. Sailors coming by or phoning in, asking what is going to happen. I'm trying to get a picture what the afternoon will bring, but it does not look hopeful. Perhaps something in the second half is what the wind-gurus are telling me.

We did have two races yesterday. My team is fairly new and we made a couple of (small mistakes), resulting in two requests for redress. In one start we had an individual recall for one boat, but were a little late in signaling X. According to the tape it took us 13 seconds. That was because we couldn't directly identify the boat involved. I've changed the procedure so that the signal is now the first thing done before we worry about the sail number. The request for redress was not from the OCS-boat, but from another who decided to return after the late signal. That boat wanted redress because it took us so long to signal.

The PC denied the request. It was the boats own decision to return - even though he was not OCS - so the criteria for granting redress were not met.

The second request was from a boat who we did identify as OCS (in another class) and the signal was 4 seconds after the starting signal. In fact we identified 5 boats on course side. One returned immediately, a second after 40 second, but the requesting boat after more then two minutes. And - you already guessed what happened - we missed seeing him return. In a multi-class event like this, it is very hard to make a distinction between boats that are coming to the next start and boats who return after OCS, but in this case we just stopped looking after two minutes. Another procedure that needs adapting., I guess.

I'm typing this post on the computer of the starting vessel, looking out now and then trying to see if anything is coming. Nothing and less.

I guess we have no choice but to keep waiting for wind.......

Friday 22 April 2011

ISAF Q&A 2011-008; The answer

You remember we send in a Q&A about a situation that happened in ESS Act 1 in Oman?
If not read this post:

The Q&A Panel came back with an answer:

The boats are fast moving multihulls. Addendum Q applies and decisions are made on the water by the umpires. In position 1 Yellow asks for room to tack. In position 3, Red responds ‘You tack’. Shortly after position 5 there is contact between Red and Blue and they both protest.

What are the rights and obligations of the three boats? And what should the decision be?

When Yellow hails for room to tack, Red only has two options for responding. By choosing to respond ‘You tack’ she is responsible for giving Yellow room to complete her tack and then avoid Blue. Therefore, if Yellow breaks rule 13 during the tack or rule 15 immediately after the tack is completed, she will be exonerated under rule 20.2. If Yellow does not respond by tacking as soon as possible, she will break rule 20.1(c).

When Blue gets to the breakwater, Yellow is tacking boat and not an obstruction. The breakwater is an obstruction and Red, who is overlapped to windward of Blue, must keep clear of Blue and give Blue room for the obstruction.

When Red bears away in position 4 to avoid contact with Yellow, Yellow is a keep-clear, tacking boat and not an obstruction. When Blue then bears away to avoid contact with Red, Red fails to keep clear as windward boat and breaks rule 11. Red’s only option to comply with the rules once she has chosen to respond ‘You tack’ to the hail from Yellow is to tack as soon as possible herself.

Once Yellow’s tack is completed she becomes right-of-way boat. Because both Red and Blue must keep clear of Yellow when her tack onto starboard is completed, Yellow becomes an obstruction for both boats. Yellow must initially give Blue room to keep clear of her under rule 15. Blue gets that room. However, if Yellow breaks rule 15 with regard to Red, Yellow will be exonerated under rule 20.2.

Although Red and Blue have been overlapped for some time, it is not possible for Blue to give Red room at this new obstruction. Blue is compelled to break rule 19.2(b) because of Red’s breach of rule 11 before Yellow became an obstruction, and Blue is therefore exonerated under rule 64.1(c). Red however, was not compelled to break rule 19.2 and the umpires should penalize Red for breaking rule 19.2. Red also breaks rule 14.

I'm happy we made the right decision on the water, but a little disappointed not the receive an answer regarding the "from the moment the overlap occurred" issue. Nevertheless the logic in the rules is flawless.

Saturday 16 April 2011

ESS 2011, China, Qingdao day 3

The third day in Qingdao was spectacular, difficult, amazing and unique. Wind shifts of 180 degrees, temperature drops from 20 to 6 degrees, gusts up to 25 knots and patches with no wind.

We did only four races, but in those no less then five boats were either severely damaged or capsized. Only one incident was the result of a collision and we are hearing the request for redress later today. The same boat capsized in the last race after they managed to repair their tillerbar and rudder, so it took them a long time to come in.

I promised a couple of pictures of the venue, but that is not happening, because it takes to long to upload - and I'm using someone else's laptop, and the connection is too unstable. I'll do them when I'm back home.

The rules in these circumstances are not suspended but it gets harder to be in the right place every time. If the wind shifts you suddenly need to be behind the boats. Also because we are the ones who are closest to the boats, usually we are the ones next to a capsize. So we stop and count heads and wait for the safety boats to arrive, before continuing. And then it's full throttle to catch up.

Today I'm doing some judging/umpiring for radio controlled racing in a pool ashore in the morning and in the afternoon back to the extremes.

Friday 15 April 2011

ESS 2011; Act 2; Qingdao, CHINA; day 1&2

This morning, (Friday) I finally managed to get to my blog. In China social media like blogger, Facebook and twitter are still restricted by the sensors. By using a proxy server on someone else's computer, I'm circumventing them by logging onto the internet "outside" China.

We have been racing in Qingdao for two days outside the harbour in Fusan-bay. Roughly on the same spot where the medal-races were held in the 2008 Olympics. Qingdao is a Sailing City indeed. Big buildings for the club and lots and lots of access to the water with facilities for public to watch the show. I'll snap some pictures today and upload them, hopefully tomorrow.

The Chinese are pulling out all the stops and have turned the former Olympic harbour into the Extreme Sailing Harbour.

Racing has been good. Enough wind to do six races each day on a upwind-downwind course. Tomorrow we'll be doing "stadium"-style racing inside the harbour.

Most penalties were at the start (pin-end) and the upwind mark. We are keeping a tight grip on things because the "heat" is on. This years group of eleven are all (with maybe one or two exceptions) in it, to win!

I'm afraid my plan to fill the empty hours with catching up on the blog is not going to be possible due to the restricted access. I'm very sorry, but the comments on Fact Finding Friday Animation 11.4 will have to wait another week.

I'll try to post a few incidents if they are of interest, nevertheless.

You can catch up on the racing at:


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