After each event I review the rules and modify them to close loopholes or improve safety. Some of you can look forward to the new rules which will be published soon. I have eliminated a lot of redundancy and simplified them. The result is a much shorter set of rules.
One big change has to do with reefing. I am giving a heads up for two reasons. First, I want to get input before I make it official. Second, I want to give advance warning in case any of you are buying new sails or modifying existing sails.
Here is a draft of the new reefing rule:
Reefing Rule for ALL Class 3, 4, and 5 Boats: All sailing classes must have a safe and efficient reefing system for all sails. You must know how to use your reefing system and it must be fully rigged and ready to go before you launch. If there is a small craft advisory at the time of launch and you don't have a reef or two in your sails, you will be immediately DQed.
All main sails and mizzen sails up to and including 135 square feet must have 100% roller reefing or at least two reef points that are roughly spaced equally along the luff. The sail maker has some latitude on exact placement of reef points considering battens and such. Main or mizzen sails larger than 135 square feet need special approval and usually such approval will not be given because these events are for small boats.
All head sails must have 100% roller reefing and they must be controlled without leaving the cockpit.
Racing spinnakers are not allowed. Cruising spinnakers and screechers are allowed keeping in mind the roller reefing requirement for all head sails.
All class 3, 4, and 5 WaterTribers must have "Reef Early and Reef Often" tattooed on their forehead. (Just kidding, but you get the idea.)
The big thing to note is that ALL main and mizzen sails must have at least two reef points. This includes BSD or similar sails. It does not include class 1 sails.