RRS 2021-21 Changes – Bulletin 01

Read the Introduction to the Rule Changes here if you haven’t already done so. Each Episode we’ll highlight changes to different types of rules.

All of these changes impact Sailors and Officials


A boat shall not receive help from any outside source, except
(a) help for a crew member who is ill, injured or in danger;
(b) after a collision, help from the crew of the other vessel to get clear;
(c) help in the form of information freely available to all boats;
(d) unsolicited information from a disinterested source, which may be another boat in the same race.

However, a boat that gains a significant advantage in the race from help received under rule 41(a) may be protested and penalized; any penalty may be less than disqualification.

So the big change here is to make sure that there is no hesitation in giving or receiving  help for a crew member who is ill, injured or in danger.

Foiling Changes
42.3 (c) When surfing (rapidly accelerating down the front of a wave), planing or foiling is possible
(1) to initiate surfing or planing, each sail may be pulled in only once for each wave or gust of wind, or
(2) to initiate foiling, each sail may be pulled in any number of times. 

So this introduces unlimited sail pumping to initiate foiling, but not to maintain foiling.

Some foiling classes will need to consider if this rule fully works for them because some classes get up on the foils by pumping and ooching the foils – which this rule change does not allow. Classes that have modified this rule will need to consider if their modified class rule is still the best wording for the class.

Simplicity and fairness changes


A5.1 A boat that did not start, sail the course or finish, or comply with rule 30.2, 30.3, 30.4 or 78.2, or that retires or takes a penalty under rule 44.3(a), shall be scored accordingly by the race committee without a hearing. Only the protest committee may take other scoring actions that worsen a boat’s score.


…NSC Did not sail the course

So these changes let the Race Committee score a boat NSC if they did not sail the course correctly. Previously they had to lodge a protest or request the boat to retire. This makes things simpler and easier.