General Race Rules

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General Race Rules


About six weeks before the race, successful skippers are informed they have been accepted to complete in the race. A number of documents arrive in this pack which, taken together, specify the rules for the race. At Race Control the latest revision of some of these documents are re-issued and additional ones issued.

Pre-Race Pack

Acceptance Letter

Apart from the very brief note that you have been accepted for the race, the acceptance letter includes list of things that it is required be carried aboard any competing boat:

  • Navigation Lights - with spare batteries
  • Torch
  • Complete set of spare clothing for each crew member
  • Identification Boards (Provided by the race organisers for boats without sail numbers)
  • Waterproof (not showerproof) clothing and hat
  • Personal flotation Device for each crew member (with spare gas cylinders if self inflating)
  • Provisions for 24 hours for each crew member
  • Pen/Pencil
  • River Toll (Weekend tolls are issued on the day by the race organisers)
  • Green Flag
  • Suitable tow rope (Minimum 3m length)

At one time all boats were checked for compliance. In recent years, this has been reduced to a spot check. However, failure to pass that spot check will lead to exclusion form the race.

Other information included in the letter are the time of the compulsory skipper's race briefing and when and where to collect pre-ordered race merchandise.

Declaration of Fitness

This is a form, which must be handed in at Race Control before the ace briefing, in which the skipper declares all the items specified in the acceptance letter are on board his boat. Additionally, all crew members undertake to sail at their own risk even though they may suffer a specified range of medical conditions.

Sailing Instructions

The Sailing Instructions list variations to the standard RYA "Racing Rules of Sailing" that will apply to the race. Most are straight forward and follow from the information in the Invitation Letter, Notice of Race and Acceptance letter. Others may be less familiar to those not used to regular club racing or the Three Rivers Race, e.g.:

  • Boats must fly a rectangular distinguishing flag
  • Substitutes to the notified crew are only allowed under special circumstances
  • Where it is permitted to lower the mast, use paddles and quants.
The Pack of Documents, issued at Race Control, that includes the tokens to be dropped at the marks

Starting Schedule

The Starters list shows how the boats will be grouped and the times of the various starts for each group. The list also shows:

  • The Race number for each boat
  • The Skipper's name
  • Boat Name
  • Boat Class
  • Sail number
  • Provisional Handicap

Race Control Pack

Apart from a re-issue of the Starters List and Sailing Instructions, there are further documents issued when you check in at Race Control. These include:

  • Incident Procedure Check List
  • List of Starting Signal Flags
  • Map Showing the X-Zone buoy and Start Line (But not the Finish Line!)
  • List of Guard Ships, Locations and Pennants flown
  • Set of Tokens to be dropped at the marks

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