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Luffing (or not)

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Sam.Spoons View Drop Down
Really should get out more
Really should get out more


Joined: 07 Mar 12
Location: Manchester UK
Online Status: Offline
Posts: 955
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    Posted: 04 Mar 17 at 9:33am
This is purely of academic interest as we all know that luffing is rarely worth the time lost unless it's a two boat race (as, effectively, the FF incident in the other thread was).

Quite a few years ago when I was racing Raceboards fairly seriously (regional and a couple of national series events a year) when the 'new rules' came in. I was told at a National event, in an informal discussion, by a 'rules expert' (he was on the RC and would have chaired the PC had a protest resulted from the incident) that the new rules effectively banned luffing.

The incident :-

It's marginal planing conditions and board A is sailing in on a broad reach, spots/hears a gust coming from astern and also hears a following board (B) approaching, planing on said gust. A pumps onto the plane to pick up the same gust, heading up for pressure and shouting "windward board keep clear". Unsighted as he is to leeward of B he continues to plane on a higher than 'proper course' until, after his third hail 5-6 secs minimum) the two make contact.

Ignoring the fact that it probably wasn't prudent to luff (but it was to head up for pressure) who should have been penalised?

Before the 'new rules' it was pretty simple, you try to pass me to windward, I luff hard, you also luff to keep clear, then shout "mast abeam" and I stop luffing and sail for the mark. The only discussion can be if I think you shouted "mast abeam" too soon. Everybody knew that to try to sail over another boat close and to windward invited defensive action and sailed accordingly (i.e. not so close as to be unable to avoid the luff).


Edited by Sam.Spoons - 04 Mar 17 at 9:35am
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