18-3 Interpretation

Discussion in 'Racing' started by danstanford, Sep 17, 2018. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. danstanford

    danstanford

    Joined Aug 2, 2010
    267 posts, 40 likes
    Beneteau 323
    CA Cobourg
    During a recent race we watched a scene unfold that resulted in a disqualification for one of the boats and it highlighted my weakness in knowing all the rules inside-out. We watched a port tack Boat (A) approach the windward mark as a starboard tack boat (B)in front of us came into the mark reasonably concurrently. It seemed B was quite close to the mark possibly in the 2 length zone when they started yelling starboard and then immediately A called for mark room. This went on a couple of times before B had to turn hard upwind into irons to avoid a collision where they languished for some time before they got turned around and back under way. A clearly tacked in the zone tightly around the mark.
    As I was anticipating the event I thought that B should be turning up to provide room because I did not understand 18-3 correctly and thought they owed mark room to A. Though it was just my impression, I thought B could sail a higher course earlier and I did not get the impression that they turned down to cut A off. B claimed A could given room but did not and even that B dramatized the situation by turning up into irons rather than just moving up to close-hauled and letting them in.
    Finally, my question: Was B under any obligation to sail higher before the zone to create mark room for A. Assuming the answer is no because the rule only applies inside the zone, how would B decide what to do as they approach the mark unsure if there is room and or if there is room for B to sail higher?
    Dan
     


  2. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    As far as I can tell A has no rights at all in this situation, for numerous reasons:
    1) Per rule 18.1(a), Rule 18 (Mark Room) does not apply between boats on opposite tacks on a beat to windward
    2) Per rule 18.1(b), Rule 18 (Mark Room) does not apply between boats on opposite tacks when the proper course at the mark for one but not the other is to tack

    From your description it sounds like both of the above are true, so the meeting is strictly port/starboard, and A has no right to call for room. The above (especially 18.1(b)) don't require that B sail close hauled. He's on starboard so he's right, as long as he doesn't alter course in a way that doesn't give A room to keep clear.

    3) Even if the above weren't the case, 18.3 says that once A tacks she can't force B above close hauled anyway. If B had to turn up to avoid collision then not only did B not foul A, but A did foul B.
     


  3. Rick486

    Rick486

    Joined Oct 1, 2007
    1,300 posts, 357 likes
    Hunter 44DS
    US Pt. Judith
    Tough protest to win. Obviously A has no rights but by screaming at B caused B to luff up. Back in the day were we B I would have stood on until close to a collision before putting the helm down, just as you described B's behavior. B could be in a bit of trouble if they headed off below the "proper course to the mark" to force A to bear off. With no collision unless there are witnesses willing to testify at the hearing, they would have trouble trying to sort this one. Of course with cruising class boats, collisions are to be avoided.
     


  4. danstanford

    danstanford

    Joined Aug 2, 2010
    267 posts, 40 likes
    Beneteau 323
    CA Cobourg
    One of the Guys on our boat is certain that B had room and was sailing below close-hauled, but I wasn't so sure. I so wish I had known the rule correctly because I am sure I would have noted B's course and how far they were below close hauled as they approached and entered the zone.
     


  5. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    Well that's true with any class. See rule 14 (Avoiding Contact). B had to avoid contact with A as long as it's reasonably possible, once it was clear that A wasn't keeping clear. Only exception is that if B did make contact, they'd be exonerated for breaking rule 14 if there was no damage or injury.
     


  6. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    I don't think it matters. They were on starboard and had no obligation to be close hauled. A had to tack at the mark and B didn't, so just like any other crossing B can be on whatever course they like and not owe A room.
     


    Rick486 likes this.
  7. Rick486

    Rick486

    Joined Oct 1, 2007
    1,300 posts, 357 likes
    Hunter 44DS
    US Pt. Judith
    My understanding of the rule is that close hauled is not as important as "proper course to the mark". So, if proper course to the mark is a reach, then B over stood the mark and the proper course is a reach.
     


  8. danstanford

    danstanford

    Joined Aug 2, 2010
    267 posts, 40 likes
    Beneteau 323
    CA Cobourg
    David, I read the rule to say that B could not sail below close hauled to prevent A from having mark room based on the sentence in italics:
    18.3. Tacking When Approaching a Mark

    If two boats were approaching a mark on opposite tacks and one of them changes tack, and as a result is subject to rule 13 in the zone when the other is fetching the mark, rule 18.2 does not thereafter apply. The boat that changed tack

    (a) shall not cause the other boat to sail above close-hauled to avoid her or prevent the other boat from passing the mark on the required side, and

    (b) shall give mark-room if the other boat becomes overlapped inside her.
     


  9. Rick486

    Rick486

    Joined Oct 1, 2007
    1,300 posts, 357 likes
    Hunter 44DS
    US Pt. Judith
    ..Except they cannot be on a course below the proper course to the mark. This is part of why this is such a difficult protest to win.
     


  10. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    Are you sure you're looking at the 2017-2020 rules? 18-3 was updated in that version. It now reads:

    18.3 Tacking 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
     


  11. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    Why not? What rule says they have to be on a proper course?
     


  12. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,304 posts, 3,310 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    I didn't read all this.

    You come to the WINDWARD mark on port you have ZERO rights.

    You are on PORT vs starboard boats
    You have no mark room.
    If you tack in the zone (even if you finish your tack) and get clear ahead you cannot force any starboard boat above close hauled.

    Its dangerous and stupid to come into a crowded windward zone on port. Calling for 'mark room' is a public display of your stupidity.
     


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  13. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,304 posts, 3,310 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    There is a interesting wrinkle to this rule that some have pointed out. If a starboard boat has over-stood and is REACHING in, a port tacker in the zone can finish their tack and can legally have them have turn up, as long as they do not force them to go past close hauled. This is pretty common in less skilled fleets where boats over-stand.

    A good (but risky/skilled) trick is to put your nose UNDER them if you have speed and can make the mark. Then THEY have to keep clear and owe you mark room.
     


  14. JRacer

    JRacer

    Joined Aug 9, 2011
    928 posts, 327 likes
    Beneteau 310
    US Cheney KS (Wichita)
    And, you better have the GoPro recording it all!
     


  15. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,304 posts, 3,310 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Another rule to fully understand in mark room calls is Rule #13.

    Rule 13 says that WHILE TACKING, a boat has no rights, UNTIL she comes to her new close hauled course.

    Many boats think that once they pass thru the eye of the wind they are on starboard. Not true. The boat has to settle down to the new close hauled angle before they are granted the rights of the tack they are on. Note that the sails to not need to be trimmed to that angle. The boat just has to be pointing there.
     


  16. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,304 posts, 3,310 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    Funny you say that.
     


  17. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    Just to make sure I understand (because I think I had forgotten this part up thread) - that's just because of windward/leeward, right? There's nothing special about the writing of rule 18 that applies there, or is there?
     


  18. danstanford

    danstanford

    Joined Aug 2, 2010
    267 posts, 40 likes
    Beneteau 323
    CA Cobourg
    This wrinkle is the basis for the defence in this case with the boat who came in on port claiming the starboard boat had turned down to cut them off and on close hauled would have given them room. Very tough call and I was there!
     


  19. Davidasailor26

    Davidasailor26

    Joined May 17, 2004
    1,733 posts, 445 likes
    Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE
    US Havre de Grace
    My interpretation from your initial post was that B headed up before A had even tacked. If that's the case then I don't think A had any right to force B up (still port/starboard). If A cleanly tacked and then forced B to turn up to close hauled I agree A could be OK.
     


  20. Jackdaw

    Jackdaw

    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,304 posts, 3,310 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI
    If you finish a tack in front of someone, normally you are clear ahead and are ROW, even if they have luff or tack to avoid you. 18 says in the zone you cannot do this.
     


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