Sunday, December 28, 2008

Rules Quiz #1

To get you all ready for the for the Dick Rose Rules Seminar on January 21st, I will post a series of questions from US sailing Judges test. Click on the question to make it larger.

Post your answers or questions for discussion as a comment, and I'll post the "Official" answers after you have had a chance to ponder the questions. Down load the new rules using the link to the right.


  1. Green: Green is on starboard, Blue on port Green has right of way. Rules 11 or 12 don’t apply because they are not on the same tack.

  2. Green: For the same reason as in question 1 Green has right of way over Yellow.

  3. Yellow: Both Yellow and Blue are on port tack so rule 11 applies between them. At position 3 Yellow is leeward boat because she is on the same side as Blue’s mainsail. The trick going down wind is look at the side the mainsail is on, and that is the boat’s leeward side. This is in the definitions given in the RRS.

  4. Blue breaks two Rules: 10 and 14. She doesn’t keep clear of Green who is on starboard (Rule 10) and she doesn’t avoid contact with Green (Rule 14). Blue doesn't break Rule 11 only because Green is in the way.

  5. Yellow breaks the same 2 rules.

  6. Green breaks Rule 14 avoiding contact. However, it’s hard to see what she could have done to avoid the contact. She will be not be penalized per Rule 14(b) because there was no damage or injury, or she would be exonerated per 64.1(b) even if there was damage or injury.

  7. Both Yellow and Blue should be disqualified.

One of you felt Rule 19.2 applied to Blue. This is an interesting question. However, Rule 19.2 does not apply in this case because Yellow is not an "obstruction" to both Green and Blue she is only an "obstruction" to Blue. Read the definition of obstruction to see how a boat racing is an obstruction. If the question was changed so that both Yellow and Blue were on the same side of Green, then Rule 19 would apply between Yellow and Blue. Think about how the Rules are different between Yellow and Blue depending on which side of Green they are.

Yellow and Blue didn’t “break” Rule 44.1 because you are never required to take a penalty, although you are allowed to exonerate yourself by doing so.

If I were Yellow or Blue in this case, I would gybe to starboard before Green is overlapped. Green is not in such a good position then. If you are Blue you would have right of way over both Yellow and Green, and if you are Yellow Green would be limited to her proper course by Rule 17 provided you gybe before Green is overlapped. If you gybe after Green is overlapped, then the limitations of Rule 17 do not apply to Green, so gybe early if you are Yellow.