Yesterday’s racing was in conditions we rarely get at the lake. It was warm, the wind strength was perfect for J’s and there were enough shifts to create passing lanes, which showed with the numerous boats reaching podium positions in the various heats. The race officers, Rod Liddy and Bob Torrie, set a windward, leeward course with a gate at the windward end, and they never had to shift the course all day because of the consistent NE breeze. I should mention they did an excellent job of running the champs, even though they are both EC12 sailors.
Two items of note stand out in my mind apart from 150 beating 276 in 4 heats. (1) We have broken our many months old good behaviour record, I heard one issue of inflammatory behaviour.
(2) One of the heats had to be abandoned because of confusion over the finish placings, but the very clear winner of that heat by a large margin was Chris.
All the rest of the regatta was in exemplary behaviour mode and it was a great day. Congratulations to the three podium placers. Glen Church, Ron Bedyn and your humble Sailing Master.
A word about RRS. There was one rule that was broken by numerous boats in nearly every start, I did a rundown on this rule a while ago, but obviously to no avail, so a repeat is necessary.
In the starts, there were a number of boats that preferred to hover upwind of the start line at the committee end, then about 20-30 seconds prior to the start signal, sail downwind and round the starboard start mark on starboard tack and to windward of several boats who were approaching the same mark from a layline position. In all other mark roundings of a similar scenario of boat positioning, those upwind boats would have mark room and have right of way because they were inside overlapped………but…….let us read the preamble to SECTION C – Marks and Obstructions – Rule 18. This is what it says. Section C rules do not apply at a starting mark surrounded by navigable water or at its anchor line from the time boats are approaching them to start until they have passed them.
So, during this period of boats approaching the line to start, Mark room rules do not apply, therefore all these boats approaching the starboard mark downwind are under rule 11. ON THE SAME TACK OVERLAPPED When boats are on the same tack and overlapped, a windward boat shall keep clear of a leeward boat.
I was one who preferred these downwind starts, but several times I had to bail out early or, come in late to avoid the boats downwind, and protesting all the boats breaching this rule was more than I could remember at a protest hearing.
The time period of when ‘boats are approaching to start’ depends on the conditions. In a drifter it will be a lot longer than fresher winds.