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Thought for the day - Days like these are few and far between

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

Racing at Emsworth has been epic for the last two Thursdays. Wind straight down the pond and plenty of it finishing close to the limit of the B rig. It was a glorious morning with sunshine, wind and not too cold and helped by a near clean score sheet.

I am eternally grateful to Emsworth for allowing me in their group and apologise for not helping cleaning the buoys and the drained pond this weekend. It is a great club with a thriving membership and enthusiastic competitors sailing IOMs and DF95's.

What did I learn with the B rig in a breeze. Upwind - Sail fast and free in the gusts and let the boat go like the clappers. Downwind - run by the lee in the hard gusts when the boat is on the limit and then luff up to maximise speed in the lulls. There were runs when I could gain up to 10 boat lengths using just this approach.

Finally my view on the rules situation in the last post.

Yellow is approaching the windward mark on starboard on a course about a boat length to windward of the mark. Yellow sees blue on port starting to tack and shouts don't go in there. Blue is coming in on port and tacks well under Yellow to close hauled and easily lays the mark. From position 3 yellow bears away sharply and hits blue as they arrive at the mark, pushing blue onto the mark. Who would be penalised if this went to protest?

In this case I believe rule 11 and 18.3 applies

Rule 11 On the same tack overlapped.

When the boats are on the same tack and overlapped, a windward boat shall keep clear of a leeward boat.

18.3 Passing Head to Wind in the Zone If a boat in the zone of a mark to be left to port passes head to wind from port to starboard tack and is then fetching the mark, she shall not cause a boat that has been on starboard tack since entering the zone to sail above close-hauled to avoid contact and she shall give mark-room if that boat becomes overlapped inside her. When this rule applies between boats, rule 18.2 does not apply between them.

So in our scenario, blues obligation was to tack onto starboard and sail to the mark without forcing yellow to sail above close hauled which she did. Yellows obligation as right of way boat is to hold her course and keep clear of blue once she was close hauled on starboard. She bore away into blue and therefore was in breach of rule 11 and takes the penalty.

Of course this is my interpretation and not an official one.

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