Sailing Instructions * Downloadable version* Sailing Instructions March 2017


Revised March 2017



The Norfolk Broads Yacht Club has adopted the RYA Racing Charter and will do its utmost to adhere to the principles embodied within it, including the adoption of the Exoneration Penalty, Advisory Hearings and RYA Arbitration for the resolution of racing disputes, as stated in the Racing Rules of Sailing 2017-2020 A notice to this effect is displayed in the clubhouse.

Any trophy owned by a class may be subject to the rules of that class regarding the eligibility to compete. Competition for trophies owned by Norfolk Broads Yacht Club shall be regarded as “open”, other than when entry is restricted to NBYC members, and without limitation imposed by class rules to the contrary.


1.0       RULES and AUTHORITY 
Racing will be governed by the Racing Rules of Sailing 2017-2020, the prescriptions of the RYA, the Notice of Race, the rules of the classes racing, except as any of these are changed by these Instructions. Except in races governed by special rules authority for the matters of racing rests with the Duty Flag Officer (DFO) who may delegate it to the Race Officer (RO).



2.1       General
The safety of a boat and her entire management including insurance shall be the sole responsibility of the owner/competitor racing the boat. Neither the establishment of these sailing instructions nor the inspection of the boat under these conditions in any way limits or reduces the absolute responsibility of the owner/competitor for his crew, his boat and the management thereof. The race organisers shall not be responsible for any loss, damage, death or personal injury howsoever caused to the owner/competitor, his skipper or crew as a result of their taking part in the race or races. Moreover, every owner/competitor warrants the suitability of his boat for the race or races.

2.2       Insurance
A Boat sailing at N.B.Y.C. shall have third party insurance for a minimum of £2,000,000.

2.3       Sail Numbers
Under exceptional circumstances, the RO may, on request prior to racing, permit a boat to use sails carrying sail numbers other than those required by Rule 77.

2.4       Eligibility
    At class weekends and whole day regattas a boat shall submit an entry form and the required fee before her first warning signal of the event otherwise she will not be scored.
(b)   In Club races a boat ranks as a competitor by displaying a racing flag (SI 12.1) and by sailing in sight of the “Bridge” at her preparatory signal.

2.5       Helmsman and Crew
In all Club races the helmsman shall be a member of the Club or a visitor having the permission of the RO. In the case of a visitor, the boat shall not be awarded any Club Trophy or points towards a Club Trophy, any Trophy or points being awarded to the next boat whose helmsman is a member of the Club.

2.6       Number of Starters and Prizes
     Two entrants to start or no first prize.
     Four or more entrants for a second prize.
     Eight or more entrants for a third prize.
     Twelve or more entrants for a fourth prize.
     Sixteen or more entrants for a fifth prize.
     Twenty or more entrants for a sixth prize.
     In Club races no points will be awarded if there are less than 2 competitors

                 (i.e. there shall be no sail over).



3.1       A personal flotation device shall be free from any damage that would reduce its efficiency and be capable of adequately supporting the wearer in the event of them entering the water.

3.2       Rule 40 is amended to include: –                                                                                        

            The helmsmen and crews of all centreboard boats, and others sailing single handed, shall wear properly fastened personal flotation devices at all times whilst sailing at NBYC.  A boat that fails to observe this instruction at the preparatory signal for a race in which she intends to compete, and until she finishes racing, shall be disqualified.

3.3       Reefing: At the discretion of the RO, and after consultation with a fleet representative, if available, in the case of the following classes, reefing may be ordered. The maximum amount of sail which may be carried shall be signalled not less than 40 minutes before the start of the race, by flying the appropriate class flag over the following:-

            Yare and Bure OD:

                 One cone – one reef

                 Two cones – two reefs and storm jib                              

                 Two cones (lower one reversed) – three reefs and storm jib                                                               

            Broads OD:                                                                      

                 One cone – one reef and large foresail                           

                 Two cones over international code flag ‘L’ – two reefs and large foresail  

                 Two cones – two reefs and small foresail                        

                 Two cones (lower one reversed) – Three reefs and small foresail                                                       

            Norfolk OD:                                                                      

                 One cone – one reef                                                     

                 Two cones – two reefs                                                  



4.1       Notices to Competitors
Notices to competitors will be posted on the official Notice Board located outside the Club office.

4.2       Changes in Sailing Instructions
Changes in the sailing instructions will be posted for at least one hour before the advertised starting time of the race or races concerned. Changes in the sailing instructions will be indicated by displaying International Code flag “L”. When no further changes have been made, I.C. flag “L” will be lowered after the start of the last race of that day.

4.3       Class Signals
The following class warning signals will be used.

           1.   Allcomers A                            – Numeral 9

           2.   Allcomers B                           – Numeral 6

           3.   Combined A / B                       – Numeral 4

           4.   River Cruiser Class (First start)    – Numeral 3

           5.   River Cruiser Class (Second start) – Numeral 2

           6.   Y&B OD                                 – V

           7.   Mixed OD                               – L

           8.   Yeoman                                  – Y

           9.   Wayfarer                                – I

           10. Norfolk OD Dinghy                  – U

           11. Mirror                                     – Naval Numeral 6

           12. Laser                                     – Special Design

           13. Star                                       – C

           14. Optimist                                 – O

           15. Topper                                   – T

           16. Junior Allcomers (Dinghies)      – A

           17. Broads OD                             – Z

           18. Splash                                   – E


4.4       Declaration Forms
Competitors may be required to sign a Declaration Form or Board, in which case a notice to Competitors will be posted on the Notice Board outside the Club Office.



5.1       Course Area
The course areas shown in the sketch below are for guidance only.

5.2       Courses
The course to be sailed is indicated by white numbers on red (port hand) or green (starboard hand) background posted on the Clubhouse below the signal mast, except in the case of Committee boat starts when the course will be displayed on the Committee boat. The numbers are to be read from left to right. If any class is required to sail a different course, this will be indicated by a board carrying a representation of the class flag which will be situated to the right of the general course and rounds indicator and precede the course and round indicator for that class.

5.2.1     When the number of a buoy is preceded by letter X, the buoy is not a mark during the first round.

5.2.2     When the course instructions require boats to finish by crossing the Finishing Line:
(a)  in a northerly direction and East Mark and/or West Mark and/or Number 5 Mark and/or Number 6 Mark is located north of the Finishing Line and one of these Marks is shown as the last of the series of marks to be rounded, boats shall finish when they cross the Finishing Line. 

(b)  in a southerly direction and East Mark and/or West Mark and/or Number 5 Mark and/or Number 6 Mark is located south of the Finishing Line and one of these Marks is shown as the last of the series of marks to be rounded, boats shall finish when they cross the Finishing Line.

5.3       Number of Rounds
The number of rounds is indicated by a white figure on a black background.

5.4       Description of Course Marks
The marks of the course will consist of spherical buoys surmounted by a staff and flag; each buoy will be positioned in the general area shown on the map 5.1.
Two additional distinctively marked buoys wearing Flag ‘M’ designated N (to be used north of the finishing line) and S (to be used south of the finishing line) and two additional distinctively marked buoys wearing Flag ”V’ designated E and W (to be used on the East side and West side of the Broad) may be laid to enable alternative courses to be set.
A course may also be set using all or some of buoys designated A, B, C, and D. These buoys will fly Code flag O. Buoys A and B will normally be set North of the finishing line in the general area of Number 1 and Number 2 buoys respectively; and C and D to the South in the general area of Number 3 and Number 4 buoys respectively. These courses will be indicated in accordance with the provisions of S.I. 5.2 substituting “letters” for “numbers”.

5.5       Distance Marks
Spherical buoys (without staffs) may be laid on or immediately adjacent to the starting line as distance marks.

5.6       Finishing Mark F

            An additional mark F may be laid close to the finishing line. When the indicated course to be sailed is succeeded by the letter F, this mark shall be rounded on the required side only on the final leg of the course, prior to finishing.


6.0       STARTS

6.1       Starting times
Starting times are published in the Club Programme.

6.2       Split Starts
When the RO., after consultation with the Fleet Captain, considers that either the numbers of boats competing or weather conditions would compromise safety of competitors he may order split starts. Details of such splitting, together with revised starting times, warning signals etc., shall be posted, as detailed in Sailing Instruction 4.1 at least 15 minutes before the advertised starting time of the first race. The posting of this notice may be indicated by the flying of Code flag “L” over the appropriate class flag and two sound signals. The visual signal shall be lowered one minute before the warning signal for the first of the affected races is made. Split starts may also be detailed in a notice of race.

6.3       Signals Displayed Ashore
Flag AP displayed over one or more shapes means “the start of the designated race is postponed for 15 minutes per shape”.

6.4       Committee Boat Starts
Flag Q means “there will be a Committee Boat start”.  The warning signal will not be made less than 20 minutes after this signal is displayed.



7.1       Starting Line
The starting line is a transit from the red staff carrying triangles on the front of the Clubhouse through a yellow and black staff carrying a yellow X. The starting line to be used may be indicated by a WHITE board bearing a BLACK number placed immediately BEFORE the course shown. The number will relate to the distance indicators on the far shore which may not be in precise transit with the starting poles. When letter D precedes all other letters and numbers on the course board, boats shall start between the distance marks (SI 5.5).

7.2       Committee Boat/Platform Starts
When Committee Boat/Platform starts are ordered (see Sailing Instruction 6.4), the starting line will be between a red and yellow staff with a triangle on the Committee Boat (flying flag Q) or Platform and the outer distance mark.

7.4       Prohibited Area
No competing boat may, at any time, pass between the Committee Boat or Platform and the limit buoy carrying the Club burgee.  Competing boats shall also keep clear of any boat flying flag Q and acting as a Committee Boat in the vicinity of the outer distance mark.  Failure to comply with these instructions may result in summary disqualification.

7.5       Distance marks
Distance marks do not have a required side at the commencement of the second and subsequent rounds.

7.6       Starting Procedure
Rule 26 is changed so that the following shall apply:- Signals shall be made at five minute intervals.
Signals shall be made as follows:-

                 Warning                          Class Flag                       1 sound

                 Preparatory                     Flag P                             1 sound

                 Start                               Flags removed                 1 sound

            When five minute intervals are used, the P flag shall be left displayed until the last class starts and the warning signal for each succeeding class shall be displayed at the time of the preparatory signal of the preceding class. If there is a general recall or postponement after the Preparatory signal, the warning and preparatory signals of any succeeding classes shall be removed after the general recall or postponement have been signalled.

7.7       Individual Recalls
Individual recalls will be in accordance with Rule 29.1 except that the class warning signal will remain at “the dip” instead of displaying code flag ‘X’

7.7.1     A boat that is on the course side of the Starting Line at the starting signal may be recalled by hail, but the responsibility for returning will rest with the boat concerned.

7.8       General Recalls
Rule 29.2 is changed to give the effect that the Warning and Preparatory signals for the new start of the recalled class shall be made one minute after the First Substitute is removed.

7.8.1     For short series events Rules 30.2 and 30.4 will not normally be applied unless there has been at least one general recall in the series.

7.8.2     Rule 30.4 is changed so that the phrase “within the triangle formed by the ends of the starting line and the first mark” shall read “on the course side of the starting line and its extensions”. The Black Flag will be “defaced”.


7.8.3     a)  A boat disqualified under Rule 30.4 will be hailed at the earliest opportunity. The display of sail numbers required by Rule 30.4 shall not apply.

            b)  The hailed boat shall immediately sail clear of the racing fleet and return to her moorings. If she fails to do so she will be disqualified without a hearing and her score will not be excluded in calculating the series score. This changes rules 62.1(a) and A5.

7.8.4     Rule 30.2 is changed so that the phrase ‘in the triangle formed by the starting line and the first mark’ shall read ‘on the course side of the starting line and its extensions’, and that flag F will be flown in lieu of flag Z.

7.9       Postponement after Preparatory Signal
Under these circumstances only, Rule 27.1 and Race Signals are changed to give the effect that the Warning and Preparatory signals for the new start will be made one minute after the AP signal is removed.


8.0       FINISHING

8.1       Finishing Line
The finishing line is a line between the inverted triangle on the front of the box and a white staff carrying a white triangle on the opposite shore.

8.2       Time Limit
(a) When no boat finishes within one hour of the actual time of start, the race may be abandoned or cancelled.
(b) Rule 35 shall not apply.  The finishing period for any class may be restricted to 30 minutes after the first boat in that class has finished.  Such restriction shall be signalled by hoisting the appropriate Class Flag under Signal Flag ‘E’ with one sound signal.  Thereafter, boats in that class will be deemed to have retired and will not be timed in.
(c) As an alternative to “timing out” boats, the RO may, at his discretion, apply an Average Lap Time calculator.  When this procedure is in operation it shall be signalled by hoisting the appropriate Class Flag under Signal Flag ‘A’ with one sound signal.  This course of action shall not be used following a Committee Boat or Platform start.

8.3       Shortening Course
When Flag S is displayed from the Clubhouse, it means “The race will finish when the leading boat followed by the other boats next crosses the finishing line having first left all the previous marks on the required side”.



9.1       The One-Turn and Two Turns penalty, Rule 44.1 and 44.2 shall apply.

9.2       River Cruisers Only. River Cruisers, when racing, shall not be subject to Sailing Instruction 9.1.  Instead, the following shall apply: –
The One and Two Turn(s) Penalties (Rules 44.1 and 44.2) shall be replaced by Time Penalties of 1 and 2 minutes respectively, added to the boat’s elapsed time, to be acknowledged as soon after the incident as possible by the said boat flying a green rectangular flag. It is the responsibility of the helmsman to declare to the RO, within 30 minutes of the finish of the last boat in that race, which penalty or penalties the boat is taking. A boat that fails to make a declaration shall be deemed to have retired. It is the responsibility of other competitors to ensure that these provisions are enforced.


10.0      PROTESTS

10.1      Rule 61.1(a)(2) is changed to give the effect that ALL protesting boats shall be required to conspicuously display a red flag at the first reasonable opportunity.

10.2      Protests or notices of intention to protest in respect of each incident in a race shall be made in writing within 30 minutes of the finish of the last boat in that race. The completed protest form shall                 be delivered within two hours of the finishing time of the last boat in that race. R.Y.A. protest forms                     and notices of intention to protest are available in the Clubhouse (notice board). Completed forms should be handed to the RO.

10.3      Disqualification without a Hearing
A boat that has broken Rule 45, S.I. 7.4 or does not sail the course, may be disqualified without a hearing.  This changes Rule 63.1



11.1      Wroxham Week, one day and weekend regattas will be scored in accordance with Appendix ‘A’ sections A1 to A8 inclusive.

11.2      For the purpose of Appendix A Section A2, unless specified in the notice of race or otherwise ordered (see Sailing Instruction 4.2), points shall be scored for races one less than the number available except that if only three or fewer races be available, ALL shall be scored.


            Appendix A, Section A4.1 Low Point System will be used: –

            Finishing Place  Low Point system

            First                1 point

            Second            2 points

            Third               3 points

            Fourth             4 points            

            Each place thereafter ADD 1 POINT. The declared entry (A4.2) will be 50


11.3      The scoring system for all Club races except for Class Weekends, Wroxham Week and Team Matches will be as described below and in the notices posted on the notice board in the Clubhouse: –

            Winner       40 points

            Second      39 points

            Third         38 points and so on.

  • Boats annotated DNS, DNF, OCS shall score points equivalent to ONE less than the last boat would have scored if all starters had finished.
  • Boats annotated RAF shall score points equivalent to TWO less than the last boat would have scored if all starters had finished.
  • Boats annotated DSQ shall score points equivalent to THREE less than the last boat would have scored if all starters had finished.
  • Boats annotated DNC (see S.2.4b) shall score ZERO points.
  • ·       In Club Series, points for half the available races shall be counted.                                     


12.1      Racing Flags
Every boat while racing shall carry at or near her masthead, or near the highest point on her sail plan, a rectangular racing flag. On retirement either this flag shall be lowered or an ensign shall be worn at the stern or a white cloth tied to the boom. At Open Meetings competitors may apply to the RO for dispensation from this rule.

12.2      Collision with moored vessels
A boat that is racing shall keep clear of all moored craft.  A boat that is in collision with a moored craft shall either protest, retire or accept the alternative penalty (Sailing Instructions 9.1 and 9.2). 

12.3      Gender
In these instructions the masculine to include the feminine.




Revised March 2017