Forum: Protest Hearing Procedures

Conduct of starters regarding U or I flag.

Geoff Chambers
Nationality: Australia
A group of skippers request the starter, who is a part owner of one of the requesting boats, impose the 'U' flag to prevent a pattern of dip starts by small boats in a small mixed club fleet of 7-10 boats.  

Starting flags other than P-flag have not been utilized in the past in this event.

The starters agree to this request but the smaller boats are not forewarned, one of which,  Boat-A, performs a dip start and sails the course unaware if a U flag was flown and is recorded by the RC as having started and also recorded a place. ie is not recorded DNS nor DSQ.

After the race a Boat-B tells Boat-A that the U flag was flown and they should retire. Another competitor, Boat-C, tells Boat-A an 'I' flag was flown and that Boat-A should retire. 

No protests are lodged (and time limits have long since expired).

Questions;

i. Is there any obligation on A to retire?

ii. If a group of competitors lobby a member of the RC to take certain action, such as to use a starting flag which is not customary for the event, and the RC agrees, is there any obligation by the RC to ensure all competitors are advised of the intended action?

iii What is the appropriate action if the RC awards a finish to a boat when another boat believes they didn't comply with RRS 30.3?

iv. Is owning an interest in a boat in a regatta a disqualifying conflict of interest for a race officer?
Created: 19-Oct-16 21:51

Comments

Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
1
Hi,

i. No, if A is not aware of her mistake. Even B and C don’t seem to agree on which starting procedure was used. Moreover, it is the RCs responsibility to score A correctly. If A is not aware of her mistake and the RC scores her with her finishing position, I would have a hard time finding A in breach of a basic principle here.

ii. No. Things like tradition or customary processes do not exist in the RRS. It is the competitors responsibility to check the flags flying on the RC vessel and to know the rules well enough to understand what those flags mean.

iii. For whom?
RC: if they determine from their own observations or records that they scored A incorrectly, they can correct that score anytime.
Other boats: protest A, preferably within the time limit (or have a good reason for being late)

iv. By the definition: quite possibly. I would not know a rule by heart to prohibit a conflicted RO from officiating, though. 

Cheers
Thorsten 
Created: 19-Oct-16 22:46
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
First off, I can't see why it should be thought necessary to discourage dip starts, especially in a small fleet:  dip starts are a normal part of the game.

If it was considered necessary, and I Flag start would do the trick, without getting as heavy as a U Flag.

i. Is there any obligation on A to retire?

A did not see the U flag.

B told A there was a U flag.

C told A there was an I flag.

I don't think it can be said that A can 'know' what flag if any other than P was displayed, so A does not 'know' that she has broken a rule and is not obliged to retire.

If B or C thought A had broken a rule and should be penalised it was up to them to protest her.

ii. If a group of competitors lobby a member of the RC to take certain action, such as to use a starting flag which is not customary for the event, and the RC agrees, is there any obligation by the RC to ensure all competitors are advised of the intended action?

The race committee and race officer should foster good communication and feedback with competitors.

The race officer is often a convenient channel for competitors to get through to the race committee.

The RO obviously needs to be careful about being unduly swayed by approaches from competitors

OP description seems to be saying that the U Flag was used for the first start, not for a later start after General Recalls.

Pulling out the U Flag for a first start is unusual.  U and Black Flag starts are usually used by a RO to gain control over a fleet that has shown that it needs more control (by going over early and getting General Recall from several P Flag starts).

To go for a U Flag for the first start looks like a policy decision that should have been discussed and decided by the full race committee.  It was unwise of the RO to do it off his or her own bat.

Likewise, whether or not to discourage dip starts is a policy issue that should have been considered by the committee.

A race committee is under no obligation to advise competitors that the race committee intends to implement procedures expressly specified in the rules.

HOWEVER

Pulling a U Flag where it's never been seen before, in a little club fleet is obviously fraught with peril.  Good communications, really says that the RO should have made his or her intention known to all.

iii What is the appropriate action if the RC awards a finish to a boat when another boat believes they didn't comply with RRS 30.3?

One boat thinks that another boat has broken a rule and should be penalised she should protest the other boat.

A boat might draw the attention of the race committee to the alleged breach, by means of a Scoring Review Request or otherwise, and if the race committee determines from its own records or observations that it has scored a boat incorrectly, it shall correct the error in accordance with rule 90.3c.

If the race committee decided after the event that it was a damn silly thing for the RO to go with the U Flag without notice, it might be that they would be unable find records enabling them to determine that any boat had been scored incorrectly.

iv. Is owning an interest in a boat in a regatta a disqualifying conflict of interest for a race officer?

The RRS say nothing about conflict of interest with respect to race officers.  If having a conflict of interest disbarred a boat owner from acting as RO, many small clubs would grind to a halt.

Conflict of Interest other than members of protest committees, at the WS or MNA level is dealt with through the Regulations or By-Laws.  At club level, it should probably rely on the good sense of the Flag Officers and committees.

I think the reasonable assumption, at a small club, is that a member, appointed as RO is expected to be able to put aside any favour of his or her own interest and to act impartially.  Where a club does roster competitors as ROs, it is probably a good idea for the race committee as a whole to keep a closer eye on things than would be the case where an independent qualified RO was controlling racing.



Created: 19-Oct-16 23:27
Philip Hubbell
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • Judge In Training
-2
This is "dirty pool."
A has an obligation to retire.
And RC has an obligation to abandon that race. It was, for the conflict and appearance reasons cited, not a "fair test."
Created: 19-Oct-16 23:48
Matt Bounds
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Race Officer
0
The first thing that popped into my head was, "Why is dip-starting such a problem that needs a drastic (Uniform flag) solution?"  Catamarans do it all the time to avoid traffic when they're headed for a pin start.  It's allowed by the RRS on a P-flag start - why prohibit it?

The U-flag is almost never used unless a fleet has "earned it" - either through prior experience (traditionally aggressive fleets which expect it) or by current experience (multiple general recalls on an otherwise fair line).  Otherwise, the RO is injecting themselves into the competition.  The goal should be P-flag starts for every race.

That notwithstanding, generally agree with Thorsten on items i. ii. and iii.  An RO with an ownership interest in a competing boat should refrain from making decisions - like initially using a U-flag instead of a P-flag at the start or sighting the line at the start.  That would remove the appearance of a conflict of interest.
Created: 19-Oct-16 23:56
Philip Hubbell
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • Judge In Training
0
As Matt says, U-flag is used when it is "earned" by repeated over-eager starters requiring general recalls.
But even then it is so harsh that the possibility of its use is declared in advance in the SI or at the competitors' meeting.
RO should have flown Lima to apprise all members of the fleet of its intention.
The starters who were involved in the discussion had "outside help" not available to A, in conflict with RRS 41. Again, not a fair test.  
Action by the RO after communication with only a portion of the fleet is not fair - and in this ownership situation arguably corrupt. 
Abandon this race - with apologies!
Created: 19-Oct-17 00:13
Matt Bounds
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • National Race Officer
0
Would abandoning be the fairest result for all competitors?  Abandoning a race after the fact should be your very last option - unless you're fond of the receiving end of pitchforks, torches, hot tar and feathers.

From what is presented, the RC did not make an error, other than mistakenly scoring a boat as finished when they should have been scored UFD.  Correct the scoring error (90.3 (c)) and wait for the inevitable request for redress.

Flying Lima to inform competitors of an impending penalty flag situation is fraught with peril (unless you are fond of redress hearings).  Oral instructions may only be given on the water if the procedure is stated in the SIs (90.2(c)).  The penalty flags are their own notification of a penalty.  An announcement on the radio (if appropriate) may be made in advance of the starting sequence ("This will be a Uniform flag start") or when the flag is flying ("The preparatory flag is displayed. Preparatory is UNIFORM") to alert the competitors of the penalty flag situation.
Created: 19-Oct-17 01:07
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
Phil, while I agree that going with a U flag start in the circumstances described wasn't a very good practice, I disagree that any extraordinary effort to inform the fleet was necessary. As long as the U flag was displayed that's all the notification required and it's not an error by the RC.

That said, it wouldn't have hurt for the RC to give all boats a heads up, either through a published notice or on the water. 
Created: 19-Oct-17 01:07
Philip Hubbell
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Race Officer
  • Judge In Training
0
90.2.c only limits changes to the sailing instructions.
It does not limit unofficial communication with all competitors.
A heads-up about unexpected activity does not change the SI.
In the given case, communication with all, rather than to a few, would be proper RO action.
Created: 19-Oct-17 01:17
Tracy Heritage
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • International Race Officer
  • National Measurer
0
Agree with Thorsten. If A was unaware of her mistake she has no obligation to retire. Both B and C gave A conflicting info, so why should she believe this information anyway?

It is the competitors responsibility to observe all flag signals flown by the Race Committee. Whether the preparatory signal is a P, I, Z, U or Black. There is no obligation on the RO to pre-warn competitors. Decisions on the water are the responsibility of the RO not the Race Committee as a whole. However, with club racing, where clubs fall into a routine with their racing, it would be prudent to mention either by newsletter, noticeboard, sailors meeting, etc., that a change to the usual P may happen sometimes with a reminder that it is the competitors responsibility to watch the flags. 

It is also not good officiating to go straight to a U. Yes, at the high level regattas such as World Cup or Olympics they do, but definitely not at club racing level unless the fleet has earned it after failed attempts at P. However, it is not against the rules, just really bad policy/judgment.

The Race Committee is always under obligation to ensure results are correct through their own observations or records. If they have incorrectly scored a competitor the onus is with the Race Committee to check their records which includes their starting logs. 

As for conflict of interest, at club level it is often hard to find someone to run the racing who does not have some kind of conflict. Most clubs would not be able to run racing at all. Conflict of Interest is judged upon what the Interest actually is and what level the racing/regatta is. The higher the level, the more stringent the policy with WS for all officials. Clubs rely on good faith and there is nothing wrong with that. 
Created: 19-Oct-17 02:03
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
With due deference to Tracy and Thorsten’s “by the book” interpretation of the responsibility of competitors to look for flags and no obligation of notice, I find it hard to ignore the origin of this unexpected change and the implication that a subset of the competitors DID have advance notice, while others did not. 

Remember, by the OP, the starter was convinced to do this, a starter who had an ownership interest in the complaining boat (this is a co-owner).   This “inside information” smacks of unfairness in my opinion, and twists the concept of equal and fair burden of responsibility to watch the flags ... especially in this club race where U and I flag were never used after a general recall, let alone the first gun.  

So, yes, by the book it’s on the competitors and no obligation to warn .... but when some had a heads-up and others did not, it smacks of favoritism and unfairness to me. 
Created: 19-Oct-17 02:29
Tracy Heritage
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • International Race Officer
  • National Measurer
0
Yes Angelo, I do agree about the fairness issue, however, it was a ‘group of skippers’ in a ‘small mixed club fleet of 7-10 boats’ that approached the starter (which included the skipper of the boat the starter had an interest in). It was this reason that I wrote :
‘However, with club racing, where clubs fall into a routine with their racing, it would be prudent to mention either by newsletter, noticeboard, sailors meeting, etc., that a change to the usual P may happen sometimes with a reminder that it is the competitors responsibility to watch the flags.’

An RO would have been wise to just say ‘I’ll take it onboard’ and then do as I mentioned above before making any sort of change to routine, whether it be a bad policy/judgement decision or not.

Unfortunately in club racing, as I mentioned previously, there rests a lot of good faith in those that run the races. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. The other competitors really should have put in a request for redress in this situation.

Perception is one word I use a lot when it comes to race officials and conflict of interests. 


Created: 19-Oct-17 03:32
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Thanks Tracy, I agree also about the perception issue. 
Created: 19-Oct-17 03:53
Phil Mostyn
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
1
Yo Tracey, I agree entirely with your submission and Thorsten's as well.
Created: 19-Oct-17 08:58
P
Michael Butterfield
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
  • International Race Officer
0
I do not think the boat needs to retire.
The flying of "U" is sufficient notification.
I disagree you earn "U" it is a tool dependant on the circumstances. I have been to a number of regattas recently 30+ starters where the first flag was always "U" I think for over 25 World Sailing in it's race management guide recommends "U".
The race committee should rescore even after the end of the regatta.
When they were within the time limit boats could have requested redress if the race committee did not rescore. That time limit would have been an extended one when they realised the RC were not going to act.
Under no circumstances should the race be abandoned.
Created: 19-Oct-17 10:37
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
Michael, agree with everything you wrote, but the nitpicky goblin in me would go for a protest instead of a request for redress.. ;)
Created: 19-Oct-17 13:40
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Thorsten, that brings up something I was thinking of, after Mike’s “under no circumstance ... abandoned” comment, and that’s of process forward.  

It would seem it’s 
  1. Scoring Inq
  2. Score Change to OCS/UFD (finally learn what the RC flew)
  3. Request for Redress by Boat-A (claiming selective pre-disclosure of U/I-Flag intention was improper action)

When I run that scenario forward, and imagine the worst of testimony/evidence against the RC, I can’t see abandoning the race either (so I agree with Mike), because based on OP,  apparently Boat-A started, sailed the course and finished oblivious to this and thus it appears her finish time wasn’t effected.

So if there is no circumstance the race should be abandoned, can we imagine some circumstance (combination of testimony/evidence) where the P.C. might determine that reinstatement of Boat-A’s finish is the fairest arrangement for all?

Created: 19-Oct-17 14:02
P
Michael Butterfield
Nationality: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
  • International Race Officer
0
The request for redress is against the RC for failing to rescore.
No action against the boat.
Created: 19-Oct-17 14:32
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Mike I’m not following.  Wouldn’t the result of that R4R likely be a change of score for Boat-A and thus end up at my 2 and 3?
Created: 19-Oct-17 14:59
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
Ang, your 3. is no improper action or omission according to the judges manual: an omission is something you did not do while a rule says you shall, an improper action is something you did when a rule says you shall not.
Poor performance or judgement is neither.
However, even if the PC decided it was improper, starting with U still is not.
A did not comply and hence contributed.
A request for redress by A is going nowhere - in no circumstances.

Michael, while I agree that not rescoring A is improper and might entitle another boat to redress (if he finished behind A), what redress would you give?
Hence, I, being another boat, would ignore the RCs mistake and go for a protest against A instead, naming the RC as witness.
Created: 19-Oct-17 15:01
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Thorsten, thanks for that layout. 

PS.  Though the IJM is a guide, it is not a Rule.  Do we have a Case that codifies those interpretations? (I couldn’t find one)
Created: 19-Oct-17 15:23
Geoff Chambers
Nationality: Australia
0
The question that hangs is whether U or I was even flown or not.

Normally it would seem unlikely that another boat would tell Boat A that a flag was flown if it was not, yet in this scenario they may have merely been expecting it to have been flown because they were privy to the plan for it to be flown. This might explain why one thought a U flag was flown, as was planned, yet another thinks an I flag was flown. Maybe they didn't actually see whether P, U or I was flown, but if a U flag was the plan agreed between the group of skippers and the starter then how is it one boat is adamant an I flag was flown. Has there been a lapse of memory, or did this skipper actually look for the U flag and identify that the starter had flown an I flag instead?

That is an attempt to reconcile why two skippers reported different flags being flown.

If the starters had scored Boat A as either not starting (DNC) or DSQ, things would be eminently clearer, so the real question becomes; if the starters flew a penalty flag and were readily able to identify Boat A and its movements in the final minute but chose not to apply the penalty then is their decision binding?

Is the starter at liberty to chose not to impose a penalty when it has flown a U or I flag, for any reason? Normally one would think not, however what if the starter feels in this scenario that as the flag being flown in unusual circumstances (first start, small fleet, not in response to repeated early starts where boats could not be identified, contrary to established routine etc) and with some of the fleet pre-warned and others not, or that the combination of factors, including perceived conflicted position of the starter, warranted in the interests of fairness Boat A not be penalised? Would such a decision be within the rules?

What if Boat B, C, or D, beaten by A , were to seek redress that failure to impose the penalty has caused them disadvantage?



 
Created: 19-Oct-17 21:34
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Michael Butterfield
said Created: Today 10:37
I disagree you earn "U" it is a tool dependant on the circumstances. I have been to a number of regattas recently 30+ starters where the first flag was always "U" I think for over 25 World Sailing in it's race management guide recommends "U".


12. Starting Penalties (Flags U, I, Z and Black Flag)
12.1 Flag I (RRS 30.1) and Flag Z (RRS 30.2) will not be used.
12.2 Flag P will be used for the first attempt of fleet race of 10 or less entries. For fleet races of more than 10 entries RRS 30.3 will be used for the first start

I would suggest that this is a highly 'situational' policy applicable to Olympic and World Sailing Events, which is what the Policies focus on.

I don't think it is good practice for club racing.







Created: 19-Oct-17 22:20
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Thorsten Doebbeler
said Created: Today 13:40
Michael, agree with everything you wrote, but the nitpicky goblin in me would go for a protest instead of a request for redress.. ;)

Given that under an U Flag there is no Individual Recall signal (rule 28.1 last sentence), an aggrieved boat would have no way of knowing that the race committee had not UFD the boat, it is unlikely that she would have hailed 'protest' and if necessary displayed a red flag, hence her protest would be invalid.

Request for redress, on the other hand, will be valid if delivered in time, and will achieve the same result.
Created: 19-Oct-17 22:28
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
Given that under an U Flag there is no Individual Recall signal (rule 28.1 last sentence), an aggrieved boat would have no way of knowing that the race committee had not UFD the boat, it is unlikely that she would have hailed 'protest' and if necessary displayed a red flag, hence her protest would be invalid.

Not sure I agree with that reasoning. If a boat observed another boat breaking 30.3 at the start and didn't become aware that the RC had not DSQd the boat without a hearing as required by 30.3, then I could see an argument where the protestor's first opportunity to inform the protestee would be when they became aware of the failure to DSQ.

So I think protest, request for redress or scoring inquiry would all be valid paths for boats that started properly and were scored behind Boat A. I also think that if Boat A suspects (from reports by other boats) and/or confirms (by asking the RC) that the prep flag was something other than P, she has reason to believe that she broke a rule and should retire.

Whether the RC's decision to use a U flag start was arrived at through fair or foul means is another question - even if you think it was clearly unfair how would a protest committee invalidate it or grant redress to Boat A under the rules?
Created: 19-Oct-17 22:46
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Tim,

Breach of the U Flag Rule is an incident in the racing area that the protesting boat saw:  that requires hail and flag.

61.1 Informing the Protestee
(a) A boat intending to protest shall inform the other boat at the first reasonable opportunity. When her protest will concern an incident in the racing area that she was involved in or saw, she shall hail ‘Protest’ and conspicuously display a red flag at the first reasonable opportunity for each.

Unless the protesting boat was beyond hailing distance (rule 61.1a(1)) and had a hull length less than 6m (rule 61.1a(2)).

Or maybe the protesting boat did not see the incident and is protesting based on what one of his or her friends told them.

And you just can't turn 'suspects' into 'knows'.
Created: 19-Oct-17 23:10
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Geoff,

As described in you OP, Boat A has been scored in her finishing position.

On that basis it would have been possible (within the appropriate [extended] time limit for another boat that thought it was a U Flag start to request redress on the basis of an improper omission by the race committee to apply rule 30.3.  As discussed above, that request would have good prospects of success.  The race officer has no discretion about applying rule 30.3.

If Boat A was scored UFD, she might essay a request for redress based on the alleged impropriety of using the U Flag without prior warning.  As discussed above, that request would have slim hope of success because applying any of the rule 30 options is not an improper action.
Created: 19-Oct-17 23:46
Tim Hohmann
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Club Judge
0
And you just can't turn 'suspects' into 'knows'.

Of course you can. By gathering additional information.

But why is "knows" the standard anyway? Boats take a rule 44 penalty when they may have broken a rule. Wouldn't retiring under the SPORTSMANSHIP AND THE RULES use the same standard?
Created: 19-Oct-17 23:57
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Rule 44 (and rule T1) create entitlements for a boat that may have broken a rule to take a penalty, that may have favourable consequences for her in the event of a protest decision that she actually did break a rule, namely that she shall not be further penalised (rule 64.1b).

Basic Principles Sportsmanship and the Rules states a principle that when competitors [actually] break a rule they will promptly take a penalty, and rule 2 requires that a boat and her owner shall compete in compliance with recognised principles of sportsmanship and fair play.  Rule 2 thus creates an obligation on a boat to take a penalty, but only if she is aware or knows that she has broken a rule (see Q&A 2017-07).

A person may certainly proceed from 'suspicion' to certain knowledge or awareness by factual investigation and reasoning, but a competitor who 'may have broken a rule' is under no obligation to cut their own throat by investigation outside their own certain knowledge.
Created: 19-Oct-18 01:13
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Whether the RC's decision to use a U flag start was arrived at through fair or foul means is another question - even if you think it was clearly unfair how would a protest committee invalidate it or grant redress to Boat A under the rules?

Thorsten, that’s where my Case request for the IJM’s interpretation of “improper action” comes in, as the list of items the RRS state an RC “shall not” do is very small and can never be complete.  It’s very much along the same lines of “proving a negative”.  

On the other hand, “omissions” being checked against an exhaustive list of “shall” items is possible. 

So I could argue that, unless we have a Case (or Appeal locally) that gives us a definitive interpretation of “improper action”, the rules guide us to use the words in their general understanding and meaning. 
Created: 19-Oct-18 14:38
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
I don't think Thhorsten is entirely right.  As Ang has pointed out the Judges Manual is not binding.

I suggest that it is inconceivable that in a case of official misconduct where favouritism or bias, directly affecting the fairness of the competition, is proved, a boat should get no redress.
Created: 19-Oct-18 21:37
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
John,

misconduct is of course improper, don‘t get me wrong here.
I am just saying the test for an RCs action to be imprope is quite high.
If the action was within the RCs portfolio of options, it was likely not improper.

As to the suggestion of a request for redress instead of a protest - lets play it through:
Say Boat B finished behind A and files a request for redress.
What would your decision be?
Redress given? To B? What type of redress?
Created: 19-Oct-19 01:27
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
Say I’m the Mayor of a city and it’s my prerogative to set the day and times for the next election in which I’m a candidate.  

In my city, there is a large religious  group who must stay indoors and pray from sunrise to sunset each 1st Tuesday of the month and the members of this religious group overwhelmingly support my opponent.  

I decide to hold election on the first Tuesday of the month, polls open from 9am-3pm to ensure my opponents supporters can’t vote thus ensuring my victory. 

Doing an allowed action (setting date/time for election) for improper intent and purposes (to disenfranchise citizens of their vote for my benefit) can make an allowable act improper. 
Created: 19-Oct-19 01:55
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Thorsten Doebbeler
said Created: Today 01:27

misconduct is of course improper, don‘t get me wrong here.
I am just saying the test for an RCs action to be imprope is quite high.
If the action was within the RCs portfolio of options, it was likely not improper.

Thanks Thorsten.

I quite like Angelo's example:  a lawful action done for an improper purpose is improper.

Just as I am very careful about rule 2 evidence and proof, I would be wanting very strong evidence and argument as to improper purpose.

As to the suggestion of a request for redress instead of a protest - lets play it through:
Say Boat B finished behind A and files a request for redress.
What would your decision be?
Redress given? To B? What type of redress?

Depending on the evidence of parties and witnesses, including the race committee (and without going near improper purpose):
  • improper omission of the race committee:  not observing boat in the triangle;
  • improper omission of the race committee:  not recording boat in the triangle;
  • improper omission of the race committee:  not applying rule 30.3;
  • improper action of the race committee:  scoring Boat A in her finishing position;
  • improper omission of the raced committee:  not correcting the score of Boat A in accordance with rule 90.3c

Any of these made Boat B's score worse than it would have been had Boat A been UFD in accordance with rule 30.3.

My view is any loss of a place by a boat is significant.  Additionally, in this case, all boats finishing after Boat A lost a place:  overall, that is significant.

Boat B was not at fault in any way.

Boat B is entitled to redress.

Redress should be that Boat A is to be scored UFD in accordance with rule 30.3, other boats places and scores to be adjusted accordingly.
Created: 19-Oct-19 06:41
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
Ang, your example would probably violate an anti discrimination law or some other prescription.
On the other hand there are things like gerrymandering.. ;)
Lets not go deeper into that misconduct thing.
The standard of proof is high and going for a U flag start instead of P does not seem like the most reliable conspiracy.

Even if that was the intention, the RC communicated the starting procedure used by displaying the correct flag.
No errors in that were reported.
It is the responsibility of the competitors to check the signals on the RC boat.
A obviously did not do that and did at least contribute to her result by not complying with the displayed U flag proceure.
This alone would be reason enough not to give A redress if she were scored UFD.


John,
ok, lets go forward with it.
I believe items 1 and 2 in your list of improper actions / omissions should relate to not sighting the line rather than to not observing/recording A in the triangle.

Item 5 would only be an omission if the RC learned about the wrong scoring from their own records or observations.

However, in your redress hearing (with or without A being a party), your PC found B was not at fault and entitled to redress. You decide to score A UFD and adjust the other boats scores.

7 minutes after publishing the decision, A files a request for redress because of an improper action of the PC, claiming that she was penalized by the PC without a protest hearing  and not as provided in RRS 30.3 in contradiction to RRS 63.1. ;)

Created: 19-Oct-19 19:36
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
A was not penalised by the redress given.

A was disqualified by the operation of rule 30.3 the instant the U flag was removed, and correcting her place and score in compliance with rule 30.3 merely corrects the results.
Created: 19-Oct-19 21:32
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
John,

not sure I would follow you on that one - probably this is also the point where we would need to know the actual facts..

30.3 allows the RC to score A without hearing - RC did not, so the provisions of that rule were not followed.

90.3c allows the RC to correct As score based on their own recordings. They did not, so at this point, without the actual facts, I assume they do not have A in their records as UFD (or observed her on their own).

The hearing was a redress hearing, not a protest hearing. As score was changed into a (penalty) scoring code, so she was penalized.

While the PC may change As score in a protest or redress hearing, they cannot put on the RCs hat and score A on RCs behalf.
I think in our situation, the only possible redress for B (et al) would be to have their scores adjusted without touching A.
Tossing A from the race would require the RC to rescore her according to 90.3c or the PC to disqualify her in a protest hearing.
Created: 19-Oct-20 08:52
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
Thorsten,

You seem to be saying that after initially having been recorded in a place and scored accordingly by the race committee, A may not have that place and score changed adversely to her because that would be to penalise her, and that rule 63.1 states 'a boat shall not be penalised without a protest hearing ...'.

I don't think that this is right for two reasons.

  1. In my opinion, A is disqualified by rule 30.3 itself, at the instant that she breaks it:  A is not disqualified either by the race committee or the protest committee, but by the rule itself (recall that we had a similar discussion about exoneration a little while ago).
  2. If my opinion in 1 is wrong, and applying rule 30.3 after the initial results and scoring is 'penalising' A, rule 63.1 continues to expressly except application of, among other penalising rules, rule 30.3, from the requirement for no penalty without a protest hearing, and rule 30.3 also expressly states that a boat that breaks that rule shall be disqualified without a hearing.
As to any disquiet about the protest committee 'directing' the race committee to take some action, rule 64.2 both requires and empowers a protest committee in giving redress to 'make as fair an arrangement as possible ...'.  In my opinion this is quite sufficiently broad to empower a protest committee to direct or instruct the race committee to act in accordance with the rules.  Protest committees, in giving redress, give directions to the race committee (or the OA scoring service) all the time:  typically "[BOAT A] is to be scored in race [##] points equal to the average ... " and "[BOAT A] is to be scored in position [##] ".  It's not as if the protest committee is trampling on the race committee's discretion:  the rules give the race committee no discretion in this case.
Created: 19-Oct-20 21:25
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
It's not as if the protest committee is trampling on the race committee's discretion:  the rules give the race committee no discretion in this case.

John, on the “crossing the Rubicon” above, in previous discussions about an SI that breaks the RRS (by changing a disallowed item), we concluded that the only recourse, prior to the race a competitor has, is to R4R on an RC improper action.   In that discussion we concluded that that the P.C. could not compel the RC to correct the SI.  

Seems we are at the same place.  The RRS states an SI shall not change certain items, but a P.C. having found that an SI does change a disallowed item, the P.C. can not compel the RC to make a correction.  Like the scoring question, the RRS does not give the RC discretion to change a disallowed rule. 
Created: 19-Oct-21 13:07
John Allan
Nationality: Australia
Certifications:
  • National Judge
  • Regional Race Officer
0
I don't know who the 'we' were that agreed that the protest committee could not give redress in those circumstances.

Submission 172-11 which changed rule 62.1 to include 'may be' specifically contemplated "the protest committee to redress such actions or omissions by directing the organizing
authority or the race committee, as appropriate, to change one or more rules in the notice of race or the sailing instructions."

Submission 172-11 shown in full below.

Submission 172-11
Rule 62
A submission from the Chairman of the Racing Rules Committee
Purpose or Objective
To enable a boat to request redress when there is the possibility that an action of the race
committee, protest committee or organizing authority may make the boat’s scores in a race yet to
be sailed significantly worse.
Proposal
62 REDRESS
62.1 A request for redress or a protest committee’s decision to consider redress shall be
based on a claim or possibility that a boat’s score in a race or series has been or may
be, through no fault of her own, been made significantly worse by
(a) an improper action or omission of the race committee, protest committee or
organizing authority, but not by a protest committee decision when the boat
was a party to the hearing;
(b) injury or physical damage because of the action of a boat that was breaking a
rule of Part 2 or of a vessel not racing that was required to keep clear;
(c) giving help (except to herself or her crew) in compliance with rule 1.1; or
(d) a boat against which a penalty has been imposed under rule 2 or disciplinary
action has been taken under rule 69.1(b).
62.2 A The request based on an incident in the racing area shall be in writing and be
delivered to the race office no later than the protest time limit or two hours after the
incident, whichever is later. Other requests shall be delivered as soon as reasonably
possible after learning of the grounds for making the request. The protest
committee shall extend the time if there is good reason to do so. No red flag is
required.
Current Position
As above.
Reasons
Before the first race of an event, or between races during an event, it is quite possible for the race
committee, the protest committee or the organizing authority to act in a way that may possibly
significantly worsen a boat’s score in a race that is yet to be sailed. Examples are easy to come
by. A rule in the notice of race or the sailing instructions, or an amendment to either of those
documents, may have been written ambiguously or may not be consistent with the racing rules,
the class rules or another document governing the event. After boats had prepared, entered and
travelled to an event, a rule in the notice of race may have been changed in a way that was
disadvantageous or unfair to one or more of the boats entered. [In the 2010 America’s Cup,
several such improper actions or omissions occurred.] If such an event occurs before the first
race of an event, then in the interest of fair competition, redress for such actions or omissions
should be given before the first race. If such an event occurs between races, then it may be
appropriate to conduct a redress hearing before additional races are sailed. It is frequently easy
for the protest committee to redress such actions or omissions by directing the organizing
authority or the race committee, as appropriate, to change one or more rules in the notice of race
or the sailing instructions. The proposed changes would enable requests for redress in such
situations to be made prospectively, and this would help to make competition fairer
Created: 19-Oct-21 13:25
P
Angelo Guarino
Nationality: United States of America
Certifications:
  • Judge In Training
  • Fleet Measurer
0
John, sorry if I incorrectly attributed something.  I wasn’t saying that this wasn’t a basis for redress, only that I thought I remembered you taking the position that the PC could not compel the RC to change the SI. In other words, I thought I remembered you taking the position that a PC can only suggest that a change be made.  If that is incorrect, my apologies as I didn’t go searching for the old thread. - Ang
Created: 19-Oct-21 14:11
Thorsten Doebbeler
Nationality: Germany
Certifications:
  • International Judge
  • International Umpire
0
John,
the rules do not act (disqualify) on their own, that is always a RC/PC action.
63.1 creates an exception from the requirement of a protest hearing ‚as provided in rulw 30.3ˋ.

Obviously, in this case A was not penalised as provided in 30.3 (or via correction based on the RCs own observations).
Ths can have various reasons, which the PC hopefully found as facts - and this is why I said the actual facts matter at this point of the discussion.

However, as A was not penalised as provided in 30.3 (by the RC), we are sitting in a hearing now # not in a protest hearing now.
Changing the (posted) score of A from a finishing place to UFD means penalising her, this is probably undisputed.

As A was not penalised as provided by 30.3 (by the RC right away, and not as a correction based on their own observations), this exception to 63.1 is not available and A is entitled to a protest hearing.

This makes sense, by the way, as A is not even necessarily a party to the redress hearing requested by B.
Created: 19-Oct-27 20:24
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