Darwin Sailing Club

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Posted on 06 April, 2018

The Rule Quiz 6-04

The Rule Quiz 6-04

This Week's Quiz:


The definition Racing states that a boat that 'finishes and clears the finishing line and marks' is no longer racing. When does a boat' clear' the finishing line and marks?

Last Week's Quiz

Between the preparatory and starting signals, Ephesian on starboard tack and Jupa on port tack approached each other head-to-head. Both boats were heavy keel boats, 33 feet (10m) long. Neither boat was aware of the other. The bowmen on both boats, who normally would have been stationed by the forestay, were handling their genoas, and no other crew members were keeping a lookout. Ephesian was moving slowly with limited manoeuvrability. They collided, causing serious damage to Jupa, who therefore retired. In the resulting protest, Jupa was disqualified under rule10, and Ephesian was disqualified under rule14. Ephesian appealed, claiming that she could not have avoided Jupa by changing course or speed.


What did the Appeal Jury decide


Rule 14 begins' A boat shall avoid contact with another boat if reasonably possible.' This requirement means a boat must do everything that can reasonably be expected of her in the prevailing conditions to avoid contact. This includes keeping a good lookout while sailing in the starting area during the starting sequence, a  time when boats are often close to one another and frequently change course.

The protest committee concluded that if either boat had seen the other a collision could have been avoided, even at the last minute, particularly if Ephesian had hailed Jupa when it was clear that Jupa was not changing course to keep clear. Until that moment, rule 14(a) allows a right-of-way boat to delay acting to avoid contact. It follows that at that moment she must begin to act in an effort to avoid contact. The word 'act' is not restricted to changing course or speed. Hailing was an action that Ephesian could and should have taken. Ephesian broke rule 14. Because the collision resulted in damage, the protest committee's decision to disqualify Ephesian was correct (see rules 14(b) and 64.1). Her appeal is therefore dismissed.

Clearly, Jupa broke rule 10. As a result of the serious damage she suffered in the collision, she retired from the race and thus took the applicable penalty (see rule 44.1(b)). Rule 64.1(b) prohibits penalizing her further. The disqualification of Jupa is reversed and she is to be scored RET.

as a mark of the finishing line on then on-required side before passing it on the required side.

Thanks to supporters of the Darwin Sailing Club