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Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another?
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Scotty Dog
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Oct 6, 2011, 9:53 PM

Post #1 of 5 (10190 views)
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Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another? Log-In to Post/Reply

Here's a question:
Can a boat be protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another?
Here's my story (I'll try to keep it as objective as I can...)
We were recenty protested for an incident that occurred before the start of a club race. Winds were light, under 5 knots. About a minute before the start, we went head to wind from port tack. A starboard tack boat was reaching down towards the line about three boat lengths away. They hailed starboard. We hailed head to wind. They hailed protest. (Note: it took about 20 seconds before the starboad boat crossed our stern)
The protest was filed under Rule 18.3 Tacking at a Mark (not sure why they chose this rule as I always thought it pertained only to windward marks....)
During the protest, we tried to have the protest thrown out as rule 18.3 does not apply before the start. The committee declined our request, heard the testimony, and decided to DSQ'd us under Rule 10 Port/Starboard.
My question: Shouldn't the protest have been heard on whether the rule in question had been infringed? Can a protest committee DSQ a competitor on a rule that the protesting boat didn't feel was broken?
Is this common? If it is, then what's to stop a competitor from filing a protest (using any rule) and then hope that something comes out in the testimony that incriminates the other boat?
(I liken it to being charged with theft only to be convicted by the judge for murder....maybe not that drastic....)

Thoughts?
(and a follow up....how long do you have to be head to wind before you are no longer considered to be on one tack or the other?)


The Publisher
*****


Oct 7, 2011, 6:56 AM

Post #2 of 5 (10179 views)
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Re: [Scotty Dog] Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another? [In reply to] Log-In to Post/Reply

I can ask a rules expert, but I am not sure that's needed. Here seem to be the two points:

- You were on port tack. The other boat was on starboard tack. Per Rule 13, you would not have changed from port tack to starboard tack until you had passed head to wind and been on a close-hauled course. It also says that you must keep clear of other boats while tacking.
- Rule 64.1(a) states that a protest committee can disqualify a boat that is party to a protest if they find that a rule was broken, regardless of whether that rule was mentioned in the protest.

Sorry, but I agree with the Protest Committee.

- Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt


Scotty Dog
*

Oct 7, 2011, 8:24 AM

Post #3 of 5 (10098 views)
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Re: [The Publisher] Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another? [In reply to] Log-In to Post/Reply

Thanks Craig,
OK Rule 64.1 covers it... I should probably read the whole rule book next time :-)
It was just surprising because we were all set to defend ourselves against 18.3, but the committee didn't even want to discuss that rule (in fact, after our initial request to have the protest thrown out, they never discussed 18.3 again).
So for future reference, instead of just going head to wind from port tack, if we had tacked and then gone head to wind, we would have been considered on starboard tack? Essentially we would have been in the exact same position, just the wind would have crossed our bow at some point.
Keeping clear of the other boat had we tacked was not an issue in this situation as they were two -three boat lengths away (60-90 feet) and moving slow.
Thanks, Scotty Dog


The Publisher
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Oct 7, 2011, 8:44 AM

Post #4 of 5 (10083 views)
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Re: [Scotty Dog] Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another? [In reply to] Log-In to Post/Reply


In Reply To
So for future reference, instead of just going head to wind from port tack, if we had tacked and then gone head to wind, we would have been considered on starboard tack?

Yepster.

- Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt


dstorrs
*

Oct 11, 2011, 8:20 AM

Post #5 of 5 (9963 views)
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Re: [The Publisher] Protested on one rule but DSQ'd on another? [In reply to] Log-In to Post/Reply

Got to be a little careful here. Just going a little past head to wind and then holding head to wind isn't enough (at that point you are still a "tacking" boat and have to keep clear. You have to actually complete your tack by falling off onto a starboard closehauled course to get right of way.
Going back to the original scenario, once you were head to wind on port tack, the starboard tack boat is limited (by rule 16) to not head off at you if you can't keep clear. It's only if you could have kept clear that you can get a penalty.


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