THE ONLY RULES WE NEED TO KNOW
What’s tricky about the rules is the more one races, the more the rules make sense. So how do we get a newbie on the racecourse without them spoiling the plot? We give them a short, yet meaningful, list of guidelines. The rules are full of specifics, but let’s keep it simple and have newcomers master these five hot areas, all from the Racing Rules of Sailing, which will carry them from start to finish:
Basic Principles: If you play the sport of sailboat racing, you are expected to follow the rules. Not following them is not only unsafe, but it also makes the game less fun for others to play. If you don’t know a rule, don’t pretend you do. And when you know you’ve broken a rule, put your hand up, take responsibility, and take whatever the penalty is for that race.
On the Same Tack, Overlapped ( Rule 11): Windward boats have to get out of the way of leeward boats, so on the starting line, if there is a boat to leeward of you, stay away from them, and if they start coming toward you, turn away from them, even if it means going over the starting line early.
On Opposite Tack ( Rule 10): Whenever you are on port tack, do not interfere with boats that are on starboard tack.
Mark-room (Rule 18): When you’re near a mark, boats on the outside have to give boats on the inside room to round the mark. It’s better to stay behind a pack of boats than to barrel full steam ahead into the pack. Your chances for a good rounding improve when you’re not stuck in a crowd.
Fair2): Don’t Sailingbe a ( Rule jerk. Screaming at everyone is just unpleasant for all involved. If you have something that needs to be said, say it in a way that is helpful.