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Rule ? #182130
06/16/09 02:22 PM
06/16/09 02:22 PM
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US 99 Offline OP
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At the Mark Madness regatta in michigan this past weekend, I came upon an interesting situation. The NOR stated that a gate would be used for the weekend racing. During the first downwind leg of the first race we were coming down to the gate but there was one problem. NO Gate existed! only one mark was placed. So if no gate is set, does a gate exist, or do you treat it as a typical C mark rounding?

Chad S F17 widespread panic 692

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Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #182132
06/16/09 02:28 PM
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If the RC has the resources, they could have a mark boat with an M flag stand in place as the missing mark.

RRS does not specifically cover this, other than to state the course requirements in the SIs.

Typically, the SIs state that if one of the gate marks is missing, round the remaining mark to the (required) side.

Hope this helps.

Mike

Re: Rule ? [Re: brucat] #182150
06/16/09 04:08 PM
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In brucat's example, the SIs would state something to the effect of "all marks left to port, except gates", then the mark would be left to port.

However, if the SIs are silent to that effect - then one could assume that the remaining mark could be either mark of a gate, thus could be rounded in either direction. Obviously, this could be a very bad situation, with boats coming at each other head-on.

That's why if you say you're going to have a gate, then you should have a gate - or a fail safe, like "all marks left to port" in the SIs.

Re: Rule ? [Re: mbounds] #182154
06/16/09 04:36 PM
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THe OOD abandons the race and you start again with a proper course....


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Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #182155
06/16/09 04:50 PM
06/16/09 04:50 PM
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So what happened differently on the 2nd downwind leg and proceeding races. Did they drop another mark to form a gate?


MP*MULTIHULLS
Re: Rule ? [Re: Mark P] #182158
06/16/09 05:46 PM
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The commitee boat dropped another mark in the water to form the intended gate by the second leg. I sailed an F18 at this event and the worst thing that could happen during the first time downwind happened. I was on the wire (and driving) my crew was preparing to drop the shoot and leave the mark to port since there was no gate. Well another f18 was coming in on starboard and intending to leave the mark to starboard as if it were the starboard gate (looking downwind)Infact, I do not believe they even realized the other gate mark was not in existence. They were crying foul and not changing course so I was forced to round up above the mark quickly to avoid hitting them. We end up gibing onto starboard and rounding behind them. Crazy. Infact, not knowing the rule here, we actually did a penalty turn because the other boat apparantly was going to protest. I figured we would be granted redress if it went that far. Well no one protested, but none the less an interesting and rare situation.

Chad S F17 692

Last edited by F17323; 06/16/09 06:40 PM.
Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #182162
06/16/09 06:37 PM
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Isotope235 Offline
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As a practical matter when sailing, I would round the existing mark as if there were no gate.

As a technical matter, things would be more complicated. Did the sailing instructions specify a leeward gate, or did they allow a single rounding mark? If they conflict with the Notice of Race, then RRS 63.7 comes into play, and the protest committee needs to decide which one will apply.

If the Race Committee set a gate, and one of the marks is missing, then RRS 34 applies. The RC shall, if possible, either replace the mark, or substitute an object displaying flag M. Failing to set a required mark, or failing to replace one that is missing is an improper omission on the part of RC and may be grounds for redress (see RRS 62.1(a)).

Things could get really complicated if boats chose to round the mark in opposite directions. As a Protest Committee member, I'd be inclined to accept roundings in either direction. As a competitor, I wouldn't count on PC sharing that interpretation.

I hope that helps,
Eric

Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #182165
06/16/09 06:56 PM
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Isotope235 Offline
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Originally Posted by F17323
I was ... preparing to ... leave the mark to port since there was no gate. Well another f18 was coming in on starboard and intending to leave the mark to starboard as if it were the starboard gate...

This is one of the problems that occurs when Race Committee sets an unintended course. I think both boats have a good argument for rounding on opposite gybes and when that is the case, Rule 18 does not apply. RRS 18.1 states "Rule 18 applies between boats when they are required to leave a mark on the same side...". So, in the absence of Rule 18, only Rule 10 applies and it is a plain starboard/port encounter. The port boat was obligated to keep clear (which it sounds like you did), but may exonerate herself if not (which it also sounds like you did). Had you filed for redress under Rule 62.1(a), I think you would have had a good chance of receiving it.

Situations like this are why SI's should be careful not to set unusual courses, and RC should take care to set them properly.

Regards,
Eric

Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #182169
06/16/09 07:19 PM
06/16/09 07:19 PM
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The course description should never have been in the NOR (notice of race). Are you sure you're not talking about the SI's?


Jake Kohl
Re: Rule ? [Re: Jake] #182172
06/16/09 08:11 PM
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I'm not going to bother with rule numbers as it just gets messy to read. This is going to be messy enough......

OK, if I was on the PC for this, my comment would be

"Why the <long list of rude words> did the reace officer not kill this race".

Here is why.......Remember PC's have to use FACTS.

How did the SIs define the course, did it state what the gate would look like? most say "between two bouys of the type <>".

Now, in this case there was no gate as one mark was missing.
So how can racers identify the place they should take the kite down and go back up wind to find the windward mark?
THEY CANNOT.
THE SI's say sail thru the gate, there is no gate, you cannot sail this course, keep going until you find the next race track WITH A GATE ON IT WITH THE MARKS as described in YOUR SI's....

IF the SI's stated there might be just one mark, then there would be a flag flown to indicate <gate> or <single mark to port/stbd>.

This tells you what to excpect and thus turn round. If they are not there(or you get a gate when you expect a mark), you do not have a race track. You were expecting a gate, there was not one, you cannot turn round by following the defined race track.




OK, so IMO, you cannot race this "course"; however.... YOu did and it gets worse....

So we could now say it's just port/stbd, but why were eaither of you rounding a mark that COULD NOT BE PART OF A DEFINED COURSE, so we might think we can say it's simple port / stbd, nope, not yet.....


Both boats (P + S) are attempting to round a mark that IS NOT A MARK WITHIN the racetrack (remember the SI's tell you you should be looking for a gate), so they are just both "rounding up in a bit of water".

Again we may still think port / stbd applies and P is wrong....

Not yet..............

Because S is changing heading and speed, P only has to react to what S does, and S HAS to give room to avoid, thus S cannot just come in, wildly drop and headup without giving room to P to avoid. P is also trying to go back upwind around a mark that IS NOT A MARK OF THE COURSE (refer SI's) as it has not been defined and so also has to keep clear of S.

Essentially it's a P / S, but with added chaos as both boats are dropping / heading up (remove the mark from this, it's not really there), so there is burden on both boats to either give room or avoid, and manover in a certain way.


Race officer should have killed the race PDQ or get a mark boat in pronto!


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Re: Rule ? [Re: scooby_simon] #182203
06/17/09 07:10 AM
06/17/09 07:10 AM
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You must be feeling better. grin


Have Fun
Re: Rule ? [Re: catman] #182212
06/17/09 08:19 AM
06/17/09 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by catman
You must be feeling better. grin


Kinda.....

Last couple of months have been crap. Son is unwell and off school most of the time. He's not a happy bunny so I'm not a happy bunny. Because of the nature of his illness, I cannot take him Skiing or sailing to take his mind off things so I just get thrashed at Monopoly, PC and Wii games most of the time. He can manage a little school work now and then which I try to make fun.

Not a grate time in the Scooby household.....


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Re: Rule ? [Re: scooby_simon] #182236
06/17/09 11:14 AM
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Matt's comment was where I was going, but after reading some of the other posts here, there can definitely be times when this can cause confusion, and the PRO needs to be ready to fly a flag...

The most common cause of this issue is when a boat catches an anchor line and the mark goes away, usually with the rest of the fleet nearby or on their way. Most of the time, there will still be a "gate" (assuming the mark being dislodged is still floating and visible), and the rest of the boats will go around the other mark, so there isn't too much of an issue.

However, it occurs to me that many times at skippers meetings, statements such as, "If you see a gate, go through it, if not, round it to port."

But, in the true sense of the rules, if the course is identified as a G at the start, and there is no gate mark present, that could get tossed on a technicality in a protest. It would be best to get the mark boat in there with the M flag, assuming time allows, etc.

Mike

Re: Rule ? [Re: brucat] #182240
06/17/09 11:46 AM
06/17/09 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by brucat
But, in the true sense of the rules, if the course is identified as a G at the start, and there is no gate mark present, that could get tossed on a technicality in a protest. It would be best to get the mark boat in there with the M flag, assuming time allows, etc.

Mike


Mike,

That's the point I'm getting to.

If it's jus ta round the cans race, use the one mark and suggest the PRO gets better at setting gates, and HOPE someone does not try and go round the other way at the same time as it gets complex as I show above.

Championships are a different issue.....


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Re: Rule ? [Re: scooby_simon] #188840
08/24/09 02:09 PM
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Apparently, we're not the only ones with this issue, see this link:

http://www.sailing.org/tools/documents/QA2009034-%5B7483%5D.pdf

Basically, they are saying what we've been saying. The odd thing is that they consider a half-gate to not be a mark at all, unless the SIs specifically provide for that. That would be ugly.

I do like that they give several options, including abandon after the fact if all else fails (which in reality is always a last-resort option).

Mike


Re: Rule ? [Re: US 99] #188854
08/24/09 05:00 PM
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Last year we had a related issue. It was a mixed keelboat/larger multihull race with a gate mark set. I was crewing on a F28r trimaran. We were closing on the port side (looking downwind) gate mark on starboard tack. Another F28 was to behind and leeward of us also on starboard. I watched as the other boat seemed to head lower than the layline. We prepared to gybe around the mark when I suddenly realized what that other guy was doing...he was trying to round the port mark from the downwind side...intending to harden up and tack through the gate!! This is completely backwards to every gate I'd ever sailed. I then realized my helmsmand was also confused, not sure which way to go through the gate. I quickly assured him we were OK. But we had to take avasive action with the other tri now coming at us on starboard after we'd gybed to port. What a mess.

After getting out of the gate area, I saw several other boats doing the same wrong-way gate passing. I guess gates must be quite a new thing still for lots of racers.

The sailing instructions were vague...just that a downwind gate would be set. Even the old 2008 rules didn't specify direction through the gate. The new 2009 rules state something like gates must be passed/entered from the windward side.




Mike Dobbs
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Re: Rule ? [Re: Tornado] #188863
08/24/09 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Tornado
I guess gates must be quite a new thing still for lots of racers.


As an "old timer" it is rather hard to understand what problem "gates" are trying to fix.

I know that the concept is to lessen the traffic found in big fleets with a conventional mark rounding. It seems that gates only create new complexities that are worse than any single mark rounding senario.

I hate gates but apparently those wiser than I think they are the way to go. Just add a few more ambiguities to the rules...good on you.


Jack Woehrle
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Re: Rule ? [Re: Mugrace72] #188870
08/24/09 08:37 PM
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mbounds Offline
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Originally Posted by Mugrace72
Originally Posted by Tornado
I guess gates must be quite a new thing still for lots of racers.


As an "old timer" it is rather hard to understand what problem "gates" are trying to fix.

I know that the concept is to lessen the traffic found in big fleets with a conventional mark rounding. It seems that gates only create new complexities that are worse than any single mark rounding senario.

I hate gates but apparently those wiser than I think they are the way to go. Just add a few more ambiguities to the rules...good on you.


It's a common misconception that gates were invented to "lessen the traffic found in big fleets with a conventional mark rounding." Gates were used in the last America's Cup - a match race where only two boats are on the course!

Gates add strategic and tactical elements to racing. They provide another "passing lane" so that sailboat races don't necessarily turn into the parades that they often are.

Two examples - taken from this past weekend at the Hobie 14 North Americans (14 boats - hardly a big fleet).

Scenario 1:
Dan Borg is leading going into the gate. I'm a couple of boatlengths behind. Normally, I would have no choice but to round behind Dan, try to point above him (not going to happen if you know Dan's pointing ability) or foot past him (not going to happen either). Tacking a 14 is slow and painful and best avoided in the moderate air and big chop we had.

The PRO had properly skewed the gate so that the favored mark (right) led to the less favored side of the course. (Left/Right are always looking upwind.)

Dan takes the unfavored mark and goes left towards the favored side of the course. I go right. Dan is forced to cover me (tack) AND he took the unfavored mark AND when I tack, I'll be on starboard. See how that can work? Turns out I blew my tack to starboard, but I would have had him if I hadn't.

Scenario 2:
Again, Dan's leading into the gate, followed close behind by Bill Jeffers. They go left. No way am I getting in that parade, so I go right. Dan can't tack to cover because Billy's on his hip (and on starboard tack). I look up the course - lo and behold, here comes some pressure on the right side (it was light air).Big header, too. I dig into the pressure / header, flop over to starboard tack to say in the puff and I'm almost laying the weather mark. I ended up with a 100 yard lead around the mark.

Gates aren't about big fleets. They're about tactics. Hobies have been using them at our North Americans since 1994. They're hardly new anymore.

Re: Rule ? [Re: brucat] #188877
08/24/09 09:07 PM
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Isotope235 Offline
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Originally Posted by brucat
Apparently, we're not the only ones with this issue, see this link:

http://www.sailing.org/tools/documents/QA2009034-%5B7483%5D.pdf

The odd thing is that they consider a half-gate to not be a mark at all, unless the SIs specifically provide for that. That would be ugly.


Basically, all that the ISAF clarification is saying is that that if the SI's specifiy a gate, then RC must set a gate. This is their way of recommending that the SI's provide an alternative rounding if only one mark is present.

This falls under the category of "improper action or omission of race committee", and could be grounds for redress. If the SI's specify a gate (and no other option) and one side is missing, then boats could reasonably assume that:
1) This is not the mark - in which case they may go on sailing looking for a gate, or
2) That it is the left gate, and round it to port, or
3) That it is the right gate, and round it to starboard.

If a boat boat decides that it is not a mark, then rule 18 would not apply.
If two boats decide to round it the same way, then rule 18 would apply between them.
If two boats decided to round it on opposite sides, then rule 18 would not apply and things can get hairy very quickly.

The recommendation for Race Committee: Don't do that. If the Sailing Instructions call for a gate (with no other option), then you must set a gate. If one mark disappears, then you must reset or replace it (possibly with a boat flying flag "M"). If you don't, then expect to either abandon the race or spend some time in a redress hearing (or both).

I hope that helps,
Eric
US Sailing Certified Judge
Area D Appeals Committee

Re: Rule ? [Re: Isotope235] #188879
08/24/09 09:22 PM
08/24/09 09:22 PM
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Jake Offline
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Originally Posted by Isotope42
[quote=brucat]Apparently, we're not the only ones with this issue, see this link:


The recommendation for Race Committee: Don't do that. If the Sailing Instructions call for a gate (with no other option), then you must set a gate. If one mark disappears, then you must reset or replace it (possibly with a boat flying flag "M"). If you don't, then expect to either abandon the race or spend some time in a redress hearing (or both).

I hope that helps,
Eric
US Sailing Certified Judge
Area D Appeals Committee


I think I've seen it before where the downwind mark is specified to be a mark to be rounded to port OR a gate...wouldn't this eliminate the issue (unless, someone took the right gate (as you're approaching from windward) to be a mark).


Jake Kohl
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