Duty Officer 2

2. Getting ready for racing.


2.0 Prepare 'Stan'

NOTE: Operators should not use 'Stan' unless they have been given training by a competent person.

The Engine

This has given us a lot of trouble - so please treat it nicely. It does however start first time and goes off at a great rate of knots.
The overhanging roof is also a danger that you need to be aware off. Unless you are the height of Ruth Cross then you should be OK.

Take on board:

  • Petrol can with attached 2 killcords and ignition keys.
  • Clipboard with race recording sheets.
  • Timer (your choice of two).
  • If it is a pursuit race - PY folder with countdown numbers.
  • You might want to consider a backup stop watch and whistle.
  • A mobile phone.
  • Radio for 'Stan'.
  • Your ADO

On Board:

  • Put petrol can in starboard rear locker, making sure air-valve is open.
  • Switch on electric isolator in port rear locker
  • Put stern bird scarer in a safe place. Note the the metal pole that held the stern bird scarer is lifted out of its hole, inverted, and placed back in the same hole. This protects the bird scarer clip and makes fitting the race board easier.
  • Leave the roof bird scarer where it is.
  • Go to cabin, fit killcord. LOWER THE ENGINE using rocker switch on throttle handle then START engine using key.
  • Use your ADO to go to the bow and release carbiner - allow buoys to go free. Making sure they don't catch on the anchor.
  • Under power and moving fit the kill cord to your leg. If going to the pontoon approach windward side and sit- off parallel to the pontoon and allow Stan to drift on.
  • Check flags, brief your ADO as what you expect them to do.
  • Plug in timer and switch on.
  • Place yellow flag in a position where you can look down it to the pin end of the start line.

Returning to anchorage

  • Use your Boat Officer. Go straight to the anchor buoys. Rescue boat picks up red buoy and hands it over to you when you arrive. Attach the 'big ring' back on to the carabiner. Alternative 'pick up' is to use boat hook from the lowest part of 'Stan' (not the bow).
  • Finishing checklist: Radio off and out. Engine off and lifted. Electric isolator switch set to 'off'. All 'racing' paraphernalia out. Petrol can with keys and kill cords out. Bird scarers re-fitted.

2.1 Position Stan on Start-Line

  • Stop the boat head to wind and upwind of the desired final position. Depress to electric winch switch within the cabin. Move slowly astern and lower the anchor so that chain does not build in a heap on top of it. Control switch is right-side of cabin. The rough guide is to pay out a chain length three times the water depth. The maximum reservoir depth is 10 m.
  • When the chain is paid out take a transit of two objects in line across the wind to check that the anchor is not dragging. If in doubt pay out more chain.
  • When raising anchor watch out for string marker indicating one metre of anchor chain left to raise. Move Stan slowly forward while doing so.

2.2 Setting a course

  1. Take a rescue boat out with a wind indicator. Stop the boat near the leeward mark (first mark) and check the actual wind direction.
  2. Decide on a course leaving space for training activities (discuss this with SI). Note, fishermen should have a 30 metre space from you and sailing boats.Some typical courses for various wind directions can be found HERE
  3. If the wind is light, set a small course, otherwise control over the length of the race is lost.
  4. Aim for a lap time for the fastest craft of no longer than 15 minutes – better lots of short laps than a few very long laps. Estimate the number of laps. If in doubt, overestimate- you can always shorten a course but never lengthen it.
  5. Check: a. the beat is true b. the reaches are not too close to the wind c. the course is a reasonable size and doesn't force boats into the weed, shallows and wind shadows.
  6. startline
  7. The start should be a beat to windward with preferably a PORT rounding for the first mark to avoid protests as the approach should be made on starboard tack.
  8. Set a start line almost at 90 degrees to the wind with a ten degree port bias. Port bias means the port tack end of the line is closer to the wind than the starboard tack end.
  9. The start line should be 1.25 x the total length of boats starting. For 25 boats of average length of 4m this means a line of 125m. Most Hollowell start lines are TOO short.
  10. Course board: Make sure that the sequence and direction of the rounding is correct. Suggest you draw your course on a piece of paper first.
  11. The start can be postponed at any time up to one second before the actual start if there are problems with timing or wind direction.

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