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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
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  #11  
Old 04-10-2012
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Re: "I'm going to watch a race" protocol

Quote:
Originally Posted by ftldiver View Post
find the NOR (notice of race), go to the skippers meeting (thursday?) and ask if anyone needs crew.
If you follow the fleet, do it with the engine so you don't take the wind from someone downwind. staying out of the way is only good if you are down wind, upwind you are blocking someone's clean air. -a sure way to be unloved.

and always bring gloves, good boat shoes, and ask if you should bring drinks or food. sometimes the owner provides all that, and extra weight is not appreciated.
This is the answer. The best place to watch a race, is on a competing boat.
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Old 04-10-2012
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Re: "I'm going to watch a race" protocol

Sublime, I sent you a private message.
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Old 04-10-2012
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Re: "I'm going to watch a race" protocol

"This is the answer. The best place to watch a race, is on a competing boat. "

Sometimes not! If the boat is competitive, you may be too busy doing things to sit back and watch what is happening. And the guys who are in the position to explain, will be way too busy to chat.

Now, if you're rail meat, you've got a perfect observation seat. Or if the boat is one of the ones that knows they're going to trail the pack...

After I took North U (when it was new) I tried selling my skipper on some of the tactical points. he wasn't interested. Until we tore the chute twice in one race and there was nothing left to do except trail the pack home and WATCH. (Yeah, North knew their stuff.)

Seat on a boat? Mixed blessing, depending on all sorts of things.

And if the volume gets terribly loud--pick a different boat next time around. Some guys need crew all the time because they simply don't know how to treat them.
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Re: "I'm going to watch a race" protocol

I take sailing students to watch races that are nearby (and yes, it is more interesting than "watching grass grow", thank you very much), and as a some-time racer I'm sensitive about where we can and can't be.

Assuming a windward-leeward course:

Before the start, stay away from the start line. "Away" means well downwind of the milling fleet, or well off to either side on a reach. NOT upwind of the line.

On the beat, you're okay if you start off on a reach, then close reach, then close-hauled. This will keep you to leeward of the "outer lay lines" and no one minds if you're to leeward. They HATE it if you're to windward.

Same thing on downwind leg, don't follow them from astern, get WELL OFF to port or starboard and stay off their wind lines.

On a reach (if there's a reach mark), stay off to leeward on both legs. Actually a reach mark is a good place to watch fairly close-up, stay about 10 boatlengths or more away from the mark on a beam reach luffing, you'll see all of them jibe 'in front of you' then head away to the leeward mark.

Just *always* remember where the wind's from and don't be between any racing boat and that wind. This means you have to move around and anticipate, which comes with experience. Until you get it, watching by motor with sails down is a good idea.
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Old 04-11-2012
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Re: "I'm going to watch a race" protocol

If you are going out when there is racing it is a good idea to know the course they will be using. Otherwise this might happen.

I was heading from St Barths to St Maarten knowing that the bucket racers were on the round the island course so was passing by the Groupers well off shore.

I timed my departure to get a sight of the race boats but had not realized that some faster boats were given a longer course with the final leg a reciprocal of my course to St Maarten. It was a gray and very rainy day but I got a few pics of the slower boats before realizing that there were a pack of mega million dollar boats emerging from the grey mist and heading straight for me. MUMMY! Still a few slalom manouvres and I am sure no race boat had to alter course for me although Hetairos the brand new 216 ft ketch did seem to be altering course anyway as it brought up the rear of the pack. I was lucky enough to get a great shot of Endeavor with the crew dangling their feet over the side and doing it without a safety rail. No wussy lifelines for these boys, just a little toe rail as it was the old days of yacht racing.
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