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References for the Rules of Racing
April 26th, 2011 @ 11:54 AM EST by admin

There are many sources to help with the Racing Rules of Sailing. Here is an annotated list of some of them.

CYA Racing Rules of Sailing 2009-2012 – Every boat should have a current copy, available from the NYC Office or the good folks who do the regalia service. This is the ISAF book with the CYA prescriptions. It includes lots of useful information beyond the right-of-way rules.

The rule book without the CYA materials can be downloaded from ISAF:

If you download the book, you will need the electronic version of the CYA Prescriptions:

ISAF publishes the Case Book, with appeals decisions from around the world. These apply to us:

The rules also include, for us, the CYA Appeals, which can be found on-line only at: 

There are many good books on the rules – most serious racers have studied at least one of these:

Dave Perry, Understanding the Racing Rules of Sailing, US Sailing, paperback. Diagrams, extensive discussion, clear diagrams, and cartoon fish to call attention to issues, make this a terrific source. The depth of his coverage is why it is published by the American association.

Bryan Willis, The Rules in Practice, Wiley, paperback.  The rules are addressed primarily through diagrams, showing most of the situations that can happen on the racecourse. Rather than working rule-by-rule, Willis takes you around the racecourse, pointing in each case to the applicable rule. If you (or your crew) are a visual learner, this thin book is a good bet.

Paul  Elvstrom (Soren Krause, editor), The Racing Rules of Sailing. Alard-Coles, London, plastic-covered paperback.  This (almost) pocket-sized book is the most recent in the distinguished series from the great Danish sailor. Working through the rules, with helpful reference to the included ISAF Rule book and the ISAF cases organized by the appropriate rule (the case book lists them in order of acceptance and publication regardless of the rules which apply).

Trevor Lewis, The Racing Rules Explained, Royal Yachting Association, paperback. In the tradition of his mentor, the late Mary Pera – who wrote the definitive book on the rules, this encyclopedic and readable book is a must for a serious student of the racing rules. He works ISAF cases and appeals from the UK, USA, and Canada as well as the ISAF Q&As, into the text rather than sending the reader to them. 

Enthusiasts of the electronic age could look at the DVDs that are available:

David Dellenbaugh, Learn the Racing Rules. 2-DVD set. Animation, computer graphics, film footage, and Dave’s narration.

For the  comprehensive Australian-produced electronic guide: it’s available on-line, or on a DVD.

All of these can be found at the Nautical Mind bookstore, or at online.