"In racing it's a big deal because"
In "how to" racing books
I don't think I've ever seen outright mention of this, but how you race
and how you decide sufficient room, really varies with your knowledge of the competition. And your wallet. I think those of us who have spent any time racing would agree on that?
When I was on a boat with regular crew, a well-off skipper, steady winds (which mean steady control of the boat), smooth water
, etc. and we KNEW that the "other boat" was also an experienced racer
, everyone on both sides knew that "sufficient room" meant you could drop a playing card between the boats and it would reach the water
. Anyone who has been in that situation knows, that's all it takes for clearing the other boat.
Except, there was this one boat one season, all gleaming wood and varnish
, where we all followed a gentlemen's agreement of "It really would be a crime to hit that...let's give 'em room". [g]
Versus a day when there's a bit of an upset in the water, half the crew are new, the wind
is gusty and all confused, and the other boat is some guy who has never been around before, with lights of confusion apparent on deck
. The key phrase to listen out for is "It's the OTHER STARBOARD, @@@####!" In that case, you turn and run fast, because sufficient room means the other end of the course.[g]
Racing rules bind racers who have agreed to follow them, among themselves only. COLREGS (etc) govern the rest of us, and if we pass through a racing fleet and give them the "courtesy" of the racing rules--that's just a courtesy, not an obligation.