Sailing Instructions 2016

The sailing instructions can be downloaded here

Schull Harbour Sailing Club


Sportsmanship and the Rules.

Competitors in the sport of sailing are governed by a body of rules that they are expected to follow and enforce. A fundamental principal of sportsmanship is that when competitors break a rule they shall promptly take a penalty or retire.

1. Rules

All races will be sailed under the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Racing rules of sailing (RRS) 2013 - 2016 edition, Irish Sailing Association (ISA) prescription IR 2000 rules, ECHO Class Association Rules, and these Sailing Instructions which will take precedence should there be any conflict with any of the above rules. No Echo Cert & SHSC 2016 Membership = No Result. The same rule applies to IRC.

2. Starting Finishing Lines.

Club Line: The starting will be formed by a transit from the Club Rib (moored west of the inner limit mark) and the Outer Limit Mark, an orange buoy with a SHSC flag. The inner limit mark, a buoy with an orange flag is set to keep yachts away from moored boats. Boats must leave the inner limit to starboard when starting a race. The finishing line will be between the flag pole in the field and the outer limit mark. Boats must leave the inner limit to port when crossing the finishing line. Note as the ferry will be used to start the race all sailors should be on board at least 10 minutes before the First Gun.

3. Starts

Racing will be started in accordance with RRS 26. White Sail Class flags shall be flown when appropriate.

First Gun will be at 1400 Hrs unless otherwise stated on the club programme or altered at the skippers meeting.

Starting sequence will be as follows:

5 Minute Warning Class Flag “W” One Sound
4 Minute Preparatory Blue Peter “P” One Sound
One Minute Blue Peter Lowered One long Sound
Starting Class Flag Lowered One Sound

Subject to prior announcement at least 1 hour before the start of the race, the Race Officer may start the race using VHF radio and Sound Signals only.

4. Courses

Courses will be displayed on a board at the Watersports Centre, Pier Road not later than 1 hour 30 minutes before the warning signal of that race.

The course is not set until signed by the Sailing captain, the PRO or his agent.

No later than the warning signal the PRO has the discretion to alter the course.

The course will be announced on VHF radio approximately 5 mins before the starting sequence.

5. Registration.

All competing boats are required to and shall check in and register at Schull Watersports Centre in the register provided at least 45 minutes before start time indicating the name of the Skipper, the boats Sail Number and class being sailed.

The Skipper shall be a member of Schull Harbour Sailing Club, each yacht shall have a current Echo Handicap Certificate. A race fee of €10 euro will be collected prior to each race.

If absolutely necessary registration details may be given to the PRO over the VHF prior to the commencement of the race starting sequence. Once the starting sequence is commenced there will be no further communication with the PRO until the race is underway.

6. Time Limit

The time limit for all races will be 1730 hrs extended by 30mins if the leading boat finishes within the time limit, except where otherwise indicated on the board at the Watersports centre.

7. Protests and Requests for Redress

7.1 Protest forms are available from the PRO. Protests and requests for redress or reopening shall be delivered to the Officer of the day or the sailing secretary within the appropriate time limit.

7.2 For each class, the protest time limit is 60 minutes after the last boat has finished the last race of the day.

7.3 It is the responsibility of the PROTESTOR to inform the PROTESTEE of the lodging of the protest, the likely time and place of the hearing and to supply him with a copy thereof. It is the responsibility of all parties thereafter to attend at the time and place of any hearing with their witnesses.

8. Penalties

8.1 The one turn penalty for touching a mark, (RRS 31), shall apply.

9. Protest Arbitration (changing RRS 44.3, 63, 64 & 66):

9.1 When a protest alleges a breach of a rule of Part 2 or RRS 31 (Touching a Mark), a boat may at the same time request arbitration or, the Protest Committee may offer it.

9.2 If the parties and a member of the Protest Committee agree that arbitration is suitable, an arbitrator will call a hearing. The arbitrator may be a member of the Protest Committee. The hearing will be conducted in accordance with Part 5 of the RRS except that RRS 64.1 will not apply. Instead, if the arbitrator decides that a boat that is a party to the hearing broke a rule for which the exoneration Penalty is available, the party will be invited to accept that Penalty. If it is accepted, the protesting boat will be allowed to withdraw its protest. This change RRS 63.1

9.3 If there is not agreement to use arbitration, a protest is not withdrawn, or the Exoneration penalty is not applicable to the facts, there will be a normal protest hearing at which the arbitrator may be a member of the Protest Committee. Rule 66 shall not apply to an arbitration decision.

9.4 A boat may accept the Exoneration Penalty at any time before the start of a protest hearing, or she may retire.

9.5 The Exoneration Penalty is a 30% scoring penalty calculated in accordance with RRS 44.3(c) and based on the number of entrants in the race (except that the minimum penalty is two places and no boat shall be scored worse than if she had been scored DNF).

9.6 The exoneration Penalty does not reverse an OCS score or a disqualification under RRS 30.3, and, it is not available where a boat has caused injury or serious damage, or gained a significant advantage by her breach.

10. Scoring

10.1. The low point scoring system will apply. DNF will receive Fleet Number + 1. DNS will receive Fleet Number +2.

Note; 1 discard will be allowed for every 4 races sailed for the overall trophy. If you sail 8 (up to 11) races, you will be allowed 2 discards.

10.2 The Sailing Captain may at his or her sole discretion allow a boat that is not owned by a Club Member, and which does not fall into any of the categories of membership listed in the Constitution, to race in any club race. In these circumstances this boat may be assigned a time only and may not be assigned a score under the scoring system outlined above.

10.3 Echo Standard Handicaps as per your certificate will be used for any new boats joining the first race of the season, for existing boats last year’s final handicap will be used for 2015.

10.4 Each boat must decide at the start of the season if they are sailing in the Cruiser or Whitesail Fleet. The handicaps are not interchangeable between the two different fleets. If a boat changes fleet during the season, the handicap will be adjusted upwards by 5% and then will be adjusted in accordance with subsequent results in the fleet.

10.5 Any boat that sails exceptionally below normal performance in a particular race will get a result as normal, but the result will not affect their handicap which will remain the same for the following race.

10.6 The May league will be a ‘stand alone’ league and will not be included in the overall results for the season. Each race in September will be included as a separate race and will be included in the overall season results.

10.7 IRC results will be awarded for those boats with current IRC Certificates.

11. Radio Communications

11.1 Except in an emergency, competitors shall neither make radio transmissions while racing nor receive radio communications not available to all competing boats.

This restriction also applies to mobile telephones.

11.2. Race Course VHF Channel is Channel 14.

12. Disclaimer of Liability

12.1 The safety of a yacht and her crew is the sole and inescapable responsibility of the person in charge who shall do his best to ensure that the yacht is fully found, thoroughly seaworthy and manned by an experienced crew who have undergone appropriate training and are physically fit to face bad weather. He must be satisfied as to the soundness of hull, spars, rigging, sails and all gear. He shall ensure that all safety equipment is properly maintained and stowed and that the crew know where it is kept and how it is to be used.

12.2 Decision to race - The responsibility for a yacht's decision to participate in a race or to continue racing is hers alone – RRS Fundamental Rule 4.

12.3 Schull Harbour Sailing Club does not accept any liability for material damage or personal injury or death sustained in conjunction with or prior to, during, or after any race.

12.4 Each boat shall have a minimum of two crew, there is no maximum. (Skipper plus one other person complies with this rule)

13. White Sail Rules.

13.1 The use of Gennakers, Bloopers and Spinnakers or other purpose-built downwind sails is prohibited.

13.2 Spinnaker poles are allowed for poling out headsails.

13.3 Only one headsail is allowed to be sheeted at any time.

14. Insurance

14.1 It is the duty of each boat owner to have his boat adequately insured against any risk, including civil responsibility to third parties and to ensure that such insurance remains valid for all racing events.

Panoramic picture of Schull Harbour