The RYA Racing Rules Of Sailing And Racing Charter
started sailing the International Yacht Racing Rules were extremely
harsh and unfriendly; if you infringed a yacht on the start line and
you were protested the only options were to retire immediately or at
the end of the race have a long and adversarial protest hearing where
you would probably be disqualified. If you touched a mark you had to
Now days things are very different; we don’t
have Yachts (too elitist), we have two turn penalties for infringing a
boat, and one turn penalty for touching a mark. There are much more
friendly alternatives to a full protest hearing.
I have sailed at AQSC since 1993 and during that time we have never had
a protest hearing; this gives an easy life but isn’t good for
improving the knowledge of the rules.
and using them to one’s advantage is a very big and enjoyable
part of sailing, We don’t have referees so we are responsible for
obeying the rule and taking penalties where necessary. There is a great
deal to learn and often quick decisions must be made and they
won’t always be correct.
The latest rules allow advisory hearings where the
parties to a protest present their case to a ‘Rules
Advisor’ who decides the facts and who is at fault; there are no
penalties unless a helm decides to take a voluntary penalty. This can
be very educational, improves every bodies understanding of the rules
and improves the fairness of racing.
I hope we start getting some protests and advisory hearings.
RYA Racing Charter Objectives
To provide the framework for everyone to enjoy the sport
of sailboat racing in whatever capacity and to whatever level the
To ensure that the sport of sailboat racing welcomes people and treats them equally.
To ensure that those who experience sailboat racing are encouraged to continue.