HdGYC Sailing Instructions


 Thursday Night and Weekend Racing have as their goal entertainment, education and an introduction to “around the buoys” racing, as well as providing earnest competition for all. These races are meant to provide a special opportunity for beginners and novices to use their boats more often and to take their first step toward learning racing, as well as providing experienced sailors with the opportunity to further their skills.

Thursday Night races are an excellent opportunity to socialize and get to know your fellow sailors before, during and especially after the racing whether you participate in the racing or not.  Remember your family; encourage them to take part in the tactics and sailing of your boat.

The motivating force that defines the sport of sailing is the satisfaction of finding your own level of ability. Participating and having fun is more important than winning.


For Thursday Night Races, Hospice Cup, Bob McVey Memorial Race, J-24 After Dark Series and the Sunday Series.  The starting sequence may be modified for the After Dark Series and the Sunday Series.


The event will be governed by The Racing Rules of Sailing, 2017-2020, the prescriptions of the National Authority when they apply, the Regional Authority, the rules of each class concerned, these Sailing Instructions, and such other rules as are applicable.


Notices to competitors will be posted on the official notice board located adjacent to the Havre de Grace Yacht Club Storage Room at Tidewater Marina.


Any attempt by a contestant to exercise right of way, to cross in close proximity to or to interfere with the reasonable transit of the race area by a commercial freighter or burdened tug shall result in disqualification.  Contestants must take corrective action well in advance of any extreme situation.  See inland rule 18, responsibilities between vessels.  Penalty provisions can be up to $5,000.00 for each violation.


Safety equipment shall be in compliance with that required by the U.S. Coast Guard, Maryland Marine Police and class rules.


To be made on a form supplied by the Havre de Grace Yacht Club. The racing entry fee is fifty-five dollars ($55) for the season.


Time on distance scoring applies to PHRF Spinnaker and Non­-Spinnaker classes.  The J-24, Lightning and Star fleets race as One-Design classes.


Anyone racing in the Bob McVey Memorial shall participate in the class they sailed in for the majority of their Thursday Night Races. In the event of a no majority tie, the deciding factor shall be the class in which the boat sailed the most in the second half of the season.


Each competing boat shall fly the appropriate class flag (as designated below in Starting Schedules) from the backstay, above the stern rail. This is to assure that they are recognized in their proper class. Boats not in compliance with this rule will have no recourse if their finish is not properly recorded.


Race Committees should attempt to use GPS times for the following sequences.


Thursday Nights:

Approx.   Time

Flags Displayed by RC Boat Class Flag
RC Boat in area


RC flag
Warning Daysailer Class


code flag “1” no class flag
Start Daysailer


Start J-24 and PHRF Spinnaker Classes


code flag “U” (J/24) and code flag “7” code flag “U” (J/24) and code flag “9”, “6” or “7” (PHRF Spin)
PHRF NonSpin Racer/Cruiser (SA/D < 17.1)


code flag “5” code flag “5”
PHRF NonSpin Performance (SA/D > 17.1)


White Flag White Flag


Signals made ashore will be displayed from the Tidewater Marina flag pole on the marina bulkhead.  In the event of hazardous weather, or the threat of hazardous weather, the race committee will display ashore either the flag AP over the flag H, indicating a postponement with further signals ashore; or the flag N, indicating abandonment of racing for the night.  When the AP over H is displayed, information on new starting times and any changes in starting sequence shall  be posted on the official notice board.  Once the decision to race is made, the race committee will display the flag L from the Tidewater Marina flag pole, indicating a notice has been posted with the new starting times and any other relevant information.


One boat of a class finishing in two hours makes a race for the class. Any boat not finishing within two and one half hours of her starting signal may be scored DNF. The word “class”, for this notice is defined as any one of the classes or divisions named in the starting schedule above (Daysailer, J24, NonSpin A-C, NonSpin D, Spin).


The starting line may be between a mark designated as “Z” just off Tidewater Marina, outside of the mooring area and a yellow flag on a race committee boat anchored east of the “Z” mark.

If a proper course with an upwind start can not be laid from the “Z” mark, the starting line will be moved to any of the marks A to H designated on the “Havre de Grace Yacht Club Racing  Chart”. The start line will then be between the Mark and a yellow flag on a race committee boat anchored in the vicinity of that mark.


The finish line will be between the flagpole on the Tidewater Marina and the “Z” mark. A race may be shortened to finish between any mark of the course and a yellow flag on a race committee boat that is displaying code flag S.  The direction of finishing is indicated by the color (red or green) of the posted “Z” mark.


Courses will be indicated by letters displayed on the Course Board. The Course Boards may be displayed on the side of the committee boat away from the starting line in order to keep the starting line clear.  If one course is displayed, all classes will sail that course.  If two courses are displayed, the Daysailer, J/24 and PHRF Spinnaker fleets will sail the course indicated by a black triangle and the Non-Spinnaker fleets will sail the course indicated by a black circle.

The letters reading from left to right will indicate the order of rounding or passing. The letters so displayed correspond to letters on the “Havre de Grace Yacht Club Racing Chart”, contained herein. Twice around will be indicated by the number 2 at the end of the course letters before the number, and three times by the number 3.

A green letter signifies leave the mark to starboard.  A red letter signifies leave the mark to port. Letter “Z” signifies that boats must pass through the finish line on the way to the next mark of the course, and watch for a possible course change.  RC may use the letter “Z” for multi-lap courses since the wind frequently dies with the daylight, as the course can then be shortened by finishing at “Z”.

RC will also consider using a triangular course for the non-spin fleets, with special attention to the interactions of marks selected for the different courses.  When possible, marks should be selected that do not require the fleets to cross courses or round marks in opposite directions.


Rule 26 starting system shall be used. A series of short horn blasts will be sounded approximately twenty seconds prior to the beginning of the starting sequence.


Individual recalls shall be made by the Race Committee flying code flag “X” (Individual Recall) and making one sound signal.  An attempt may be made by the RC to hail the sail numbers of the boats that have started prematurely (OCS). Failure to hear a hail is no excuse for not returning to restart.  General Recall, when necessary, will be made after the starting signal, by raising the first substitute and with two sound signals for the class recalled. The class recalled shall start last. If more than one class has a General Recall, the first class recalled will restart first, five minutes after the starting schedule has been completed.


The 720° penalty, RRS rule 44. l and 44.2 will apply.


Protests will be heard on the night of the race at Tidewater Marina, as soon as possible after the race.  When protesting another boat, follow all necessary procedures, RRS rule 61.1, concerning notifying the protested boat and displaying code flag “B” at the first reasonable opportunity.  Also, notify the Race Committee of your intention to protest when you cross the finish line.  The Race Committee will note the protest on the scoring sheet for that night’s race.  The results for that race will become provisional, based on the outcome of the protest hearing.  An official Protest Form may be obtained from the Race Committee, the Thursday Night Chair or the Race Chair.  It is the skipper’s responsibility to complete the necessary forms and to present them within a hour of the protesting boats finish time. The protest committee reserves the right to postpone the protest hearing to a mutually agreeable site and date, if they feel circumstances warrant more time or a more formal environment.

We have been fortunate to have very few protests in the past, and we look forward to a continuation of Corinthian racing.


The Low Point scoring system of Appendix A of the RRS will be used.  A boat that came to the starting areas but did not start, did not finish, retired after finishing, was the only boat racing in a class or was disqualified shall be scored points for the finishing place one more than the number of boats that started the race. A boat that did not come to the starting area (DNC) shall be scored points for the finishing place one more than the number of boats entered in the series. A minimum of two boats in a class appearing at the start makes a race.

A skipper serving as Race Committee shall receive points for service equal to the average of the best three races of the series, provided that his or her class is racing. He or she shall only serve as race committee one time for the purpose of point retention in a series. If the Race Committee makes a good faith effort to conduct a race, but other factors prevent her class from racing (e.g. insufficient wind, too much wind, insufficient boats), the skipper shall receive points for service equal to the average of the best five races of the series.  If the committee’s boat chooses to race, her finish will not be scored for the series results. The RC boat does not count as a boat racing in her class, when determining the scoring of that class.  Boats will not be scored for individual races until racing dues are paid. Thursday evening scores shall be based on each boat’s best 6 races of the series including DNC scores, providing an adequate number of races were completed overall.


Ties will be broken in accordance with Appendix A8 of RRS.


Only boats with paid Havre de Grace Yacht Club racing entry fees will be scored for series trophies. Havre de Grace Yacht Club overall trophies for J24 and Star classes shall be awarded on the basis that each class shall select.  Overall trophies for Nonspin and Spin classes shall be determined by equally weighting the finishes for the following club events:  Spring Series, Summer Series, Hospice Regatta, HdGYC Invitational and McVey Memorial Race.  The best four places out of these five events are used to calculate the overall score for a boat. Ties wil be broken based on the finishes for the Spring Series. Thursday evening series trophies and Havre de Grace Yacht Club overall trophies will be awarded at the annual meeting of the Havre de Grace Yacht Club.


Havre de Grace Yacht Club will not knowingly serve any alcohol to anyone under 21 years of age, or dispense alcohol to anyone who is viewed as abusing the consumption of alcoholic beverages. The ultimate responsibility for the conduct of all participants at a sailboat racing event, including social events connected with it, falls upon the individual skipper of each participating boat.

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