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Sailing Instructions

Sailing Instructions for Club Series Racing and Trophy Events

Revised January 2022

  • 1 RULES
    1.1 Club series and trophy races will be governed by the 'rules' as defined in the Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS).
    1.2 The Prescriptions of the Royal Yachting Association will apply.
    1.3 The Rules of relevant class associations will apply.
    1.4 Competitors shall wear lifejackets or other adequate personal buoyancy at all times when not ashore. Wetsuits and dry suits are not considered adequate personal buoyancy.
  • 2.1 Notices to competitors will be posted on the official notice board located at the front of the Clubhouse.
  • 3.1 Any change to the sailing instructions or change to the schedule of races will be posted at least 1 hour prior to the scheduled start time of the appropriate race.

  • 4.1 Signals made ashore will be displayed at the Race Office.
  • 4.2 Light and sound signals are made from the Race Office as follows:




Course up


Three (3) sound signals

Shorten course

Three (3) white lights on as the leading boat of each fleet passes the penultimate mark.

Two (2) sounds

General Recall

1st Substitute Flag signalled from tender near the start line.

Whistle and hail


One (1) red light on

Two (2) sounds

Race Abandoned

Four (4) while lights on

Frequent sound signals

Clear the water immediately -return ashore via the slipway area

Four (4) white lights and one (1) red light on

Frequent sound signals

4.3 When a Postponement is signalled ashore, the warning signal will be made not less than 1 minute after the Postponement signal is removed.

4.4 Four (4) while lights and repeated sound signals indicates the race is abandoned.


5.1 Racing is scheduled as specified in the Racing Calendar.

For class racing, the start sequence will be a single start sequence for all classes (Fast Handicap (PY1089 and below), Laser and Slow Handicap (PY 1090 and above).

5.2 Where races are advertised as 'back to back' the warning signal for the second race will be sounded no less than 5 minutes after the last boat has finished.

5.3 Changes to the Racing Calendar will be posted on the website and Club Notice Board at least 3 days prior to the race(s) affected.


6.1 Where committee boat starts are used for series racing or Trophy events, the class flags to be used will be defined at the competitors briefing and may be numeral pennants 1 to 3.


7.1 The racing area is Scaling Dam reservoir. Helms should make best endeavours to keep clear of:

the Bird Sanctuary in the southwest corner of the reservoir marked by a continuous floating line and orange buoys,

the disabled fishing pier in the northwest corner of the reservoir marked by black buoys,

fishing from the margins of the reservoir.

7.2 Competitors are expected to show consideration to fishermen and should make best endeavours to a) avoid sailing within 30m of fishermen and b) avoid causing damage to their tackle.


8.1 The course will be displayed 15 minutes before the first warning signal on the Course Board at the front of the Clubhouse, which shows the marks, the approximate angles between the legs, the order and side which the marks are to be passed or rounded. The course will be displayed both diagrammatically and in writing; in case of ambiguity the written version of the course will take precedence. The number of laps for each class to complete may also be shown. Where races are advertised as 'back to back' the same course shall be used for both races.

8.2 Where the Committee Boat is used, the course may be displayed before the Warning Signal on a board showing the order and side which the marks are to be passed or rounded, (the background colour denoting the required side).The number of laps to complete will also be shown. Where races are advertised as 'back to back' the course may be changed between races.


9.1 Club course marks are defined by the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 8 and by the letters W (white) and Y (yellow).

9.2 Marks of the course will be as designated on the course board.

9.3 Temporary yellow inflatable tower buoys (T) may be used.

9.4 The starting and finishing marks will be indicated on the course board. A dan buoy with an orange flag will normally be used at one end of the start line and a designated mark or the committee boat at the other.

9.5 A map of the lake with permanent marks is attached at the end of the sailing instructions, this is included as a guide and competitors must establish the location of marks themselves prior to going afloat.


10.1 Start Signals

Races will be started by using RRS 26. (5, 4, 1, go) and will normally be started using a system of lights from the race office, as follows:

Time Relative to

First Start


Light Displayed

Sound Signals

-5 minutes


2 white lights

1 sound

-4 minutes


2 white lights extinguished, 1 white light on after 3 seconds

1 sound

-1 minute

One minute

2 white lights

1 sound



All lights off

1 sound

The warning signal for each succeeding class will be made with or after the 1 minute signal of the proceeding class. The starting line will be between a staff displaying an orange flag on the starting mark at one end and a mark designated on the course board at the other end.

10.2 For Trophy events, races may be started from a committee boat. In this case, races will be started using Rule 26 with the warning signal given 5 minutes before the starting signal. The starting line will be between the flagstaff displaying an orange flag on the committee boat and the orange flag starting mark.

10.3 Boats whose warning signal has not been made shall avoid the starting area.

10.4 A boat starting later than 5 minutes after her starting signal will be scored Did Not Start.

10.5 Starting Penalties For all starts Rule 30.1 "Round-an-End Rule" shall apply. Flag I will not be displayed.


10.6.1 Individual Recalls

Rule 29.1 is replaced by:

When at a boat's starting signal any part of her hull, crew or equipment is on the course side of the starting line, then that boat shall return to the pre-start side of the starting line via one of it's extensions (rule 10.5) and if that boat does not, and the race committee is presented with evidence from the safety or committee boat to that effect, then the race committee may disqualify that boat without a protest hearing

Note: Whilst the race committee will endeavour to fly Flag X, the responsibility lies with each craft to ensure that they comply with the starting procedure

10.6.2 General Recalls

Rule 29.2 is replaced by:

When at the starting signal the race committee is unable to identify boats that are a) on the course side of the starting line or b) to which Rule 30 applies, or there has been an error in the starting procedure, the race committee may signal a general recall.

Where the class recalled is the only or the last class in the sequence, its new Warning signal will be made at least one minute after the recalled start signal. Where one or more classes follow the class recalled then the Warning signal for the new start will be the 1 minute signal for the last class in the sequence (back of the queue).


11.1 The finishing line will be designated on the course board.

11.2 Where a Committee boat is specified, the finish shall be a line between the mast of the Committee boat and the adjacent mark of the course and boats shall finish in a direction from the previous mark of the course.



For each class involved, a shortened course shall be indicated by 3 white lights and 2 sound signals as the leading boat of that class rounds or passes the last mark before the finish. The 3 lights shall remain on, but be extinguished briefly prior to shortening the course for any subsequent class, as above.


For each class involved, a shortened course shall be indicated by displaying Flag S and the relevant class flag on the Committee Boat and 2 sound signals as the leading boat of that class rounds or passes the last mark before the finish. For subsequent classes to finish the relevant class flag will be displayed with 2 sound signals as the leading boat rounds or passes the last mark before the finish.


Under Option 1 or 2 and at the discretion of the Race Officer, one or more boats may be finished after completing fewer laps than the leading boat, provided that:

a) The start lap and the first lap times for a representative boat in that race are recorded. The start lap shall be calculated as a fraction of a complete lap by ratio of the start lap and the complete lap.

b) The total race time for a boat so shortened shall be calculated in proportion to the laps (and fraction of lap) completed by the representative boat and by the shortened boat.

c) Where possible the shorten course signal shall be made as the leading boat approaches the penultimate buoy. However, the Race Officer at his discretion may make the signal for a boat other than the leading boat in order to maintain control of the race (e.g. to avoid sending slower boats round the course in a dying wind). When this discretion is exercised the Race Officer will endeavour not to split fleets (e.g. finish some boats of the same class on different laps). Should a fleet become split and the results show obvious anomalies, redress may be applied to restore the natural order within that fleet without disadvantaging other competitors.


13.1The Scoring Penalties. Rules 44.1 and 44.2 shall apply.


14.1 Boats failing to finish within 30 minutes after the first boat sails the course and finishes will be scored Did Not Finish. This changes Rules 35 and A4.1.


15.1 Protest forms are available from the race office. Protests shall be delivered there within the protest limit time.

15.2 For each class, the protest time limit is 30 minutes after the last boat has finished. The Race Committee may extend this time limit if it deems it reasonable in the circumstances.


The Advisory Hearing, Post-race Penalty and RYA Arbitration procedures of the RYA Rules Disputes Procedures may be available for protests relating to club races.


When there is an incident that will not result in the lodging of a protest or a request for redress, a boat, protest committee or race committee may request an advisory hearing, and notify any boat involved in the incident. An adviser will then call a hearing to learn what may have happened and will state whether any rule appears to have been broken, and by which boat. A boat may as a result notify the race officer that she accepts a Post-race Penalty when it applies to the incident, or choose to retire.


18.1 When a protest or request for redress is lodged, a boat may at the same time request that the dispute be settled by Arbitration; Protest Committee or Race Support Team may offer it.

18.2 If the parties and a member of the Protest Committee or Race Support Team agree that RYA Arbitration is suitable, an arbitrator, (who may be a member of the protest committee) will call an Arbitration Hearing. When it is the arbitrator's opinion that a boat that is a party to the arbitration hearing has broken a rule for which the Post-Race Penalty is available, the party will be invited to accept that penalty, and if accepted, the protesting committee will allow the protest to be withdrawn, changing rule 63.1.

18.3 When there is not agreement to use RYA Arbitration or when, after RYA Arbitration, a protest is not withdrawn or the Post-Race Penalty is not applicable to the facts, there will be a normal protest hearing at which the arbiter may be a member of the protest committee. Rules 66 and 70 (reopening and appeal respectively) do not apply to an arbitration since this is not a protest committee decision or procedure. A boat may still accept a Post-Race Penalty at any time before the start of a protest hearing and receive its protection from further penalisation. She may also retire.

18.4 When redress is offered and accepted by boats at the RYA Arbitration, all parties, the protest committee or race committee may seek to have this reviewed by asking for a full hearing. When redress is offered and not accepted, or not offered at all, all parties may ask for the request to be heard before a protest committee.


19.1 A boat that may have broken a rule of RRS Part 2 (When Boats Meet), or RRS 31 (Touching a Mark), may, after finishing the race concerned and before the start of a related protest hearing, notify the race committee that she accepts a 20% scoring penalty as stated in RRS44.3(c), (except that the minimum penalty is two places if that does not result in a score worse than DNF). This penalty does not reverse an OCS score or a disqualification under RRS 30.3. It is not available for a breach of RRS 2 (Fair Sailing); RRS 69 (Misconduct) or of Cass rules. Nor is it available to a boat that caused injury or serious damage, or gained a significant advantage by her breach: in these circumstances, her penalty is to retire.

19.2 When an Exoneration Penalty is accepted:

(i) Neither the boat nor a protest committee may then revoke or remove the penalty.

(ii) The boat shall not be penalised further in a protest hearing when the protest committee decides that it was appropriate to the facts found and the applicable rules.


20.1 Long Series

Scoring will be as per Appendix A, except as follows:

A2 Races to count will be approx. 50% of total number of races sailed (when 6 or more races are sailed). The table below shows the number to count in all cases:

Races completed













Races to count














Scheduled No. of Races

Total Races to Count, depending on the number of Races Held

Wednesday Night (Thornton Trophy & Walworth Personal Handicap)


Up to 11 or 50% rounded down

12 o'clock Trophy


Up to 12 or 50% rounded down

Junior, Youth, Shell Trophy


Up to 12 or 50% rounded down (scores extracted from the 12 o'clock Series)

Millennium Trophy


Up to 12 or 50% rounded down

Summer/Autumn Class Series:

Turner Townsend Rosebowl, Scaling Bell, Aphrodite Trophy, Evening Gazette Cup

Summer 12

Autumn 13

In both cases: Up to 6 or calculated from the table above.

Trophies placed from combined results of both the Summer and Autumn Series.

A4 modified so that 1st place shall be awarded ¾ points.

A5.3 will apply.

20.2 Short Series

The following events are 'Short Series':

  • March Series,
  • Freezer Series,
  • One Day Trophy Events: Colin Harrison Memorial (RNLI) Trophy; Ruby Trophy; Anniversary Trophy; Commodore's Cup (Regatta); Huntcliffe Trophy.
  • Youth & Junior Saturday Series
  • Sail Camp Series
  • Scoring will be as per Appendix A, except as follows:

A2 Races to count: The number of discards will be as follows:

Races completed


















A4 modified so that 1st place shall score ¾ points.

A5.3 will apply.

20.3 Duties

20.3.1 Average points will be awarded to Helms or Crews who have performed Race Officer, Assistant Race Officer or Support boat duties, at the end of each series.

20.3.2 In a 'Long Series', a maximum of 2 duties per helm per series can be counted towards final average points. In a 'Short Series', a maximum of 1 duty per helm per series can be counted towards average points, with the exception of a One Day Trophy Event.

20.3.3 On a 'One Day Trophy Event', average points are not awarded.

20.4 Ties

Ties shall be broken by applying Rule A8.1 and if a tie remains Rule A8.2

Rule A8.1 is replaced by:

If there is a series-score tie between two or more boats, each boat's race scores shall be listed in order of best to worst, and at the first point(s) where there is a difference the tie shall be broken in favour of the boat(s) with the best score(s). All scores shall be included.

If a tie remains rule A8.2 shall apply. All races will be used including those with DNC results.


21.1 All competitors must sign on prior to going afloat.

21.2 All competitors must sign off within 30 minutes of the last boat finishing. A boat that retires from a race shall notify the race committee by signing the declaration sheet as retired.

21.3 When 4 white and 1 red lights accompanied by frequent sounds are signalled from the Race Office all boats shall return ashore immediately.


A boat or equipment may be inspected at any time for compliance with the class rules and sailing instructions.


A boat shall neither make radio transmissions while racing nor receive radio communications not available to all boats. This restriction also applies to mobile telephones.


Competitors participate in the club events entirely at their own risk. See Rule 4, Decision to Race, Scaling Dam Sailing Club will not accept any liability for material damage or personal injury or death sustained in conjunction with, prior to, during, or after racing.


Each participating boat shall be insured with valid third-party liability insurance with a minimum cover of £3 million.


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