Rules Around the Race Course – Saturday, May 5, 1:00-5:00, BCYC

“Protest” is not a dirty word. It is a required hail to inform another boat the she has (in your opinion) broken a rule. It does NOT mean that you have to go into a protest hearing. Over 90% of the time it is clear if a rule has been broken, and by which boat. The appropriate next step is for the boat that broke a rule to take a penalty per rule 44.1, and the race continues.

There are situations when a protest hearing IS warranted. But this is only in complex situations when the competitors really DO NOT KNOW who was at fault, and a panel of experts is required to find facts, interpret the rules, and make a decision. Otherwise, everybody is better off when rule violations are handled on the water. But, this only works when the competitors know the rules!

There is no sugar-coating that the rules are complex and can be difficult to learn.  And, they change every four years, so while you may have learned them in the past, you probably do not know them in the present form. While this half-day experience will not make you an expert, you WILL learn why and how the rules work. One thing is for certain – you cannot learn the rules by reading the rule book. But, you do need the book! The most reliable place to get it is from If you join US Sailing, you get one for free…

Protest hearings are expensive! They require that a panel of experts be assembled (who often are not otherwise already onsite), delay trophy presentations, and deny participants the enjoyment of after-race events.  For this reason, BCYC is sponsoring a one-time special offer for this event:

Participants, skipper or crew, in the 2018 16 week BCYC TACO TUESDAY series are offered a discount of over 50%! The more that rule violations are handled on the race course, the better the famous after-racing party, weekly trophy presentation, and raffle!

Click here to register.

The Racing Rules of Sailing for 2017-2020 book is available here.


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