According to Rule 18.2(e), if there is reasonable doubt that a boat broke an overlap in time, the PC should recourse to 18.2(e) and presume that she did not.
In a hearing, the PC finds as fact that a few lengths before the boats reached the zone, boat O had been overlapped outside boat I. However, the evidence for the PC to decide whether O bore away in such way as to eliminate the overlap just as she reached the zone, were insufficient. So the PC presumes that the overlap was not broken, according to Rule 18.2(e).
How should the PC formulate her decision? Namely, the presumption that the boats were overlapped when O reached the zone, is a fact or a conclusion?
Writing as a fact that the boats were overlapped when O reached the zone and just mentioning Rule 18.2(e) as a rule that applied, seams insufficient, since that fact was never actually “found”. It is not a statement of what happened, rather than of what the PC “presumes” happened.
Could that be a conclusion, in which the PC reached by applying Rule 18.2(e) to the fact actually found, thus that the overlap existed a few lengths before the boats reached the zone?
Anyhow, could the parties appeal on the grounds that the application of Rule 18.2(e) cannot be justified, since the evidence were sufficient and there was no reasonable doubt regarding the overlap?