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Old 07-31-2013
theonecalledtom theonecalledtom is offline
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Rule 18 and Starboard Tack at the Leeward Mark

A situation I was in in a race last year has been bugging me and it would be awesome to get some clarity on it.

Winds were light and as we rounded the leeward mark on port tack (heading for a port tack reach) we were in a bunch of boats, perhaps half a dozen or so. We managed to get inside and overlapped on the front row and it seemed like we were going to have a great rounding, though everyone was going pretty slowly.

Into this situation a significantly larger and faster boat approached, in clear air and on starboard. We were already within a couple of boat lengths of the mark and they just barged in front causing us to take evasive action and nabbing our position on the inside of the rounding.

The captain and tactician did not protest as the other boat had starboard advantage but my understanding is that this only applies at the windward mark and in this case big boy needed to step back and take his turn.

Who's right?
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