New RRS and changes affecting Radio Sailing

This year sees the introduction of a new set of Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS) which cover the years 2021-24. Although there aren’t any significant changes, International Umpire Greg Eaton (GBR) has produced a short Powerpoint Presentation guide to the key changes affecting Radio Sailors, which (thanks to the GBR IOM class) is available here. This includes a link to the Racing Rules Guidance from the RYA which includes full information on the changes on pages 16-24.  I have posted an independent link to this here.

You can download a set of the new rules from the World Sailing website along with any changes made, although the RYA have a convenient page with links to download this and other documents associated with the rules here.

If you prefer a printed copy, then a full set of the Rules is available from the RYA in a convenient A6 format and printed on Waterproof paper for £10.99.  A link to the page of this and all RYA books on Racing is available here.  Of course there are always other books on the rules, including:

  • The Rules in Practice 2021-2024: The Guide to the Rules of Sailing Around the Race Course by Bryan Willis
  • Elvstrøm Explains the Racing Rules: 2021-2024 Rules (with model boats)

These books have diagrams to help explain many of the rules, unlike the RYA version which is simply the World Sailing text and RYA “Prescriptions”. Both books are available from online book store’s if you are interested.  Something to read whilst in lockdown?

Member Guidance with Club in Tier 3

As you may well have seen, the Club is now in a Tier 3 area.

This has little, if any effect on organised sailing at Birkenhead. Anyone in the local (Wirral) district area can travel to the club as before when it was in Tier 2. The guidance (and clarified for sporting events by Sport England) is that for anyone in a different area at a Tier 3 level (Liverpool, Halton etc or even further afield) is requested to stay in their local area and not travel into another area. The official guidance for Tier 3 is here.

If a member lives in a Tier 4 area they should definitely stay local to their home (the name for the Tier is “Stay at Home”) and not travel to the club. Should Wirral (and therefore the club) move into Tier 4, then the club will need to cease organised events again.

The above was summarised in the most recent MYA guidance here.

Rules for socialising before racing, between races and after racing, remains as the rule of 6 (as the club is based at a public park) and so is as per Tier 2. As a reminder, the groups of 6 should not mix on any day and should always remain socially distanced. If there are up to 13 racing on any day, be careful not to congregate in what could be considered to be groups larger than 6 or even one large group.

The clubhouse will be opened so that the toilets are available whilst members are on site. Face coverings should be worn whilst inside. Boat preparation or repair should all be undertaken outside.

The club therefore requests that anyone in a different (to Wirral) Tier 3 or 4 area, does not travel to the club at this time.

Stay Safe and let’s hope that 2021 ends better than it starts.

DF65 Social Racing #14 30/12/20

The last Race of 2020 saw 8 DF65 sailors arrive for a chilly windless start to the morning. R.O. Neil decided on a single lap course on the far side, to make the most of a very light westerly breeze.

John took a First and a Fourth in the first two races before deciding he had better things to do than drift around the lake. That left the rest of us to share in achieving line honours, and first places were then spread across the fleet.  Then later, as the wind filled, in the sailing became – well – proper sailing !

John, Sally and Neil had one win each, Charles and Richard
two wins apiece and Andrew had three wins, taking first place overall.
Thanks again to Neil Westbrook for acting as R.O.

Results as follows after 10 races:

  1. Andrew Peter          919   18 pts
  2. Neil Westbrook         03   21 pts
  3. Sally Collings          829   22 pts
  4. Richard Walker         39   29 pts
  5. Charles Legg               21   35 pts
  6. Paul Little                    45   41 pts  1 x 2, 1 x 4, 4 x 5
  7. Don Mackinnon      933   41 pts  1 x 2, 1 x 4, 2 x 5
  8. John Brierley              84   53 pts  (only 2 races sailed)

Seasonal Greetings from the Commodore

I would like to wish all our members and sailing friends a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy and especially a Healthy New Year in these difficult times we are experiencing.

I thank you for your support over the past year and look forward to seeing old and new friends at Birkenhead in 2021.

John Brierley

RG/DF65 Winter Series #1 report

The first of the RG65/DF65 today at Birkenhead, unfortunately the wind was from the South which for anyone that wants to know is the houses wind, not ideal, and difficult to lay a course but Peter once again donned the waders and did his best. All the RG’s were in there top swing rigs except for Martin that had borrowed Johns Pocket Rocket for the event but John chose to supply Martin with a slightly lower aspect top suit that did disadvantage him on the day but he’s still a tough nut to crack. The DF’s all chose the A plus rig.
The DF’s and RG’s all start on the same gun but the DF’s had a slightly shortened course, this option of racing does seem to work when sailing a mixed fleet, giving plenty of practice on a loaded start line.
The wind started off with quite a few vicious gusts but as the day went on these gusts vanished and the wind swung around about 20 degrees making more of a reaching course unfortunately, still plenty of skill required though looking for those pockets of wind and shifts.
The racing proved to be very close on the day with only 16 points separating 3rd-8th in the RG fleet, Graham and John sharing all 8 wins between them took 1st and 2nd, unfortunately we lost Peter after race 5 with a split tyre on his car and this needed to be changed before his journey home. The DF fleet was dominated by Mike who took all 8 races, well done.
Well done also to Bernie who started and finished us, having to walk round to the top bank to accurately get our finishing scores kept his steps up.
The club has gone from strength to strength in these lockdown periods that have stopped us travelling further afield, lets keep this level of entries and quality up in 2021 and hopefully we will see the fruits of this when travelling is open again.


  1. Graham Elliott            55   Argon                       6pts    6 wins
  2. John Brierley                84    Uno                        10pts    2 wins
  3. Martin Roberts            22   Pocket Rocket    20pts
  4. Peter Baldwin              63   Pocket Rocket    24pts
  5. David Potter                 20   Pocket Rocket   27pts
  6. Matt Stephenson        08   Pocket Rocket  33pts
  7. Dave Williams              33   Pocket Rocket  34pts
  8. Neil Westbrook            03   Pocket Rocket 36pts


  1. Mike de St Paer       35     6pts  6 wins
  2. Colin Deakin             93      18pts
  3. Derek Mathews       57      18pts