For a number of years, the Bermuda Race Organizing Committee (BROC) has imposed monetary penalties for failure to satisfy eligibility, entry, measurement and registration requirements by set deadline dates. These monetary penalties have proven ineffective in the case of some deep-pocketed racers, and have led to an increasingly burdensome entry process and to the potential for unfair advantage for racers who may wish to make last-minute sail and other gear decisions dependent on weather forecasts.
Yachts that do not meet set deadlines in the entry process will face time penalties instead of monetary penalties in 2014. Shown here os Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Class 10 in a rare spinnaker start in the 2012 Newport Bermuda Race.
To counter this trend, the BROC has replaced monetary penalties with elapsed time penalties beginning in 2014. These apply to administrative matters rather than infractions that may be associated with sailing the race course, and are designed to provide a level playing field (eligibility and measurement) or an orderly race administration (entry and registration).
The penalty for failure to meet eligibility, entry, measurement and registration requirements in a timely manner shall be the addition of 10 minutes to the yacht's elapsed time for each 24 hour period or any part thereof for which the yacht failed to meet the relevant deadline. Such requirements include any rule having a deadline, e.g., late supplemental information form, rating data, fees, crew information and waivers, satisfactory completion of inspection, and registration appearances.
Any yacht that suffers a catastrophic gear failure requiring submittal of new rating data after the rating submittal deadline may petition BROC for a waiver of penalty, provided that for other than the catastrophic failure, she would have in all respects been able to comply with the dates specified in the Notice of Race. In addition, any yacht requiring crew changes subsequent to the deadline for submitting crew information for reasons of illness, injury or family emergency may petition BROC for a waiver of penalty.
'Catastrophic Gear Failure' means damage to the hull which results in a loss of its watertight integrity, loss or damage to the keel or rudder which renders either ineffective or inoperable and/or loss of or damage to mast(s), boom(s) and/or standing rigging, any of which require repair or replacement to maintain a yacht's seaworthiness. Damage to sails or running rigging are not considered catastrophic gear failures.
'Crew Information' includes each crew member's official ISAF Sailor ID and status under the ISAF Sailor Classification Code (Category 1, Amateur, or Category 3, Professional). Time penalties will be imposed for every crew member who has not submitted an ID and Classification Code by the Crew Deadline of 1700, June 1, 2014. Each sailor must apply for her or his own ID and Classification Code on the ISAF web site here.
The 2014 Newport Bermuda Race will start on June 20, 2014, off Castle Hill, Newport, RI. For more information about the race, visit Bermuda Race.