This thread was born from a previous discussion exploring the possibility of reversing a decision to allow a protest withdraw. That thread can be found here
That discussion begged the question, “What is the proper procedure and circumstances a protest-withdraw should/could be allowed in the first place?”
The direct references in the RRS are scant (IJM ref’s at bottom). I know of only:
- RRS 63.1 : "... The protest committee shall hear all protests and requests for redress that have been delivered to the race office unless it allows a protest or request to be withdrawn."
- Appx T4.b " a boat may ask to withdraw her protest. The arbitrator may then act on behalf of the protest committee in accordance with rule 63.1 to allow the withdrawal. "
1) Is there a “right” to withdraw a protest?
This comes directly from IJM K-14’s title (below). Seems to me both the RRS and IJM’s are otherwise consistent that withdrawing a protest is a privilege/allowance by the PC and fully within its power to grant or not. Is K-14’s title’s use of “right” just unfortunate wording or is there more to it?
2) Is the PC’s determination-process a “brief hearing”? (ref: IJM J-7 below)
There are different types of hearings described in the RRS and a “protest withdraw hearing” is not one them. If it is a “hearing”, then
- who are the parties to this hearing? (by IJM J-7, it seems only the protestor is invited)
- if others, what notice is required or prudent?
- if there are parties, can they call witnesses?
3) What is this hearing/discussion trying to determine?
- IJM J-6 suggests a criteria is that if the PC believes the Protestee (or Protestor) took an appropriate penalty, the PC should offer protest-withdraw.
- IJM K-14 making sure that “damage, injury or foul-play is not suspected” (this loops back to the question of the structure of the “brief hearing”, what parties and testimony) .
- Question: is PC only to rely upon the Protestor’s information to determine if “damage, injury or foul play” are suspected? Seems to me both parties should be talked to.
- IJM L-5 uses the wide-open phrase “with good reason” and J-7 puts it the most firmly that “The PC would allow the withdrawal ..if .. satisfied that the request is reasonable“.
That’s all I’ve got as far as thoughts, questions ideas. I look forward to hearing your ideas.
In the IJM here are several references (non-header emphasis added). This list is not exhaustive of every reference. If I missed one that is potentially dispositive, please add it.
- J-6 " ... Once that [the Protestee's penalty acceptance] declaration is made, ask the protestor whether he or she wishes to withdraw the protest since, under rule 64.1(b) the protestee has now taken a penalty and could not be subject to any further penalty in that incident if it goes to a hearing. If so, ask the protestor to write on the form, “I wish to withdraw this protest”. The protest committee may then allow the protest to be withdrawn under rule 63.1."
- J-7 "Withdrawing Protests Once the protest has been received, a protestor’s request to withdraw the protest must be approved as a decision of the protest committee (rule 63.1). This involves a brief hearing in which the protestor provides the reasons for the request. The protest committee would allow the withdrawal of the protest if it is satisfied that the request is reasonable. The competitor should also sign the protest form confirming withdrawal of the protest."
- K-14 "Right to Withdraw a Protest Withdrawing a protest requires the approval of the protest committee. A competitor may not automatically withdraw a protest simply upon request. The protest committee should determine the reason why it is being withdrawn. If foul play, damage or injury is suspected, permission should not be given."
- L-1 "... The [Arbitration] process then permits the protestor to withdraw the protest."
- L-4 "... Only if the protestor requests to withdraw the protest may the arbitrator act on behalf of the protest committee to allow the withdrawal."
- L-5 "... The arbitrator may, with good reason, accept a request to withdraw a protest before arbitration begins. The arbitrator’s opinion and the decisions of the parties to the protest made at arbitration are not subject to appeal. If the protest is withdrawn, there is no protest remaining and nothing to appeal.