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Chandlers and equipment manufacturers take note, changes to Racing Rules of Sailing

Published on: 07 December 2020

rules sail racing

Every four years, World Sailing updates the Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS). The rules for 2021 – 2024 will apply from 1 January 2021. These rules contain two key changes that sailing equipment manufacturers and chandlers must recognise. 

Rule 50 relates to Competitor Clothing and Equipment with 50.1(c) specifying that a trapeze harness shall be of the quick release variety and compliant with ISO 10862. This change was first agreed by World Sailing at their annual conference in November 2018 and it’s implementation was delayed until January 2023 to give the industry five years to develop harnesses compliant with the ISO standard.

Given that this rule is now contained within the newly published 2021-2024 Racing Rules of Sailing, it is gaining more attention with individuals looking to upgrade their harnesses to ones that will be compliant with the new rule.

The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Technical Department would like to hear from any manufacturers who currently have available on market or are in the process of developing a quick release trapeze harness which is compliant with the ISO standard.

Rule 50.1(b) relates to the weight of such harnesses. At World Sailing’s 2020 Annual Conference an urgent change to the rule was made.

This amendment reverses a previous change that had been made to the maximum weight of a trapeze harness and also reinstates the ability of class rules to change this from 2kg up to 4kg.

Rule 50.1(b) now reads:

“Furthermore, a competitor’s clothing and equipment shall not weigh more than 8 kilograms, excluding a hiking or trapeze harness and clothing (including footwear) worn only below the knee. Class rules or the notice of race may specify a lower weight or a higher weight up to 10 kilograms. Class rules may include footwear and other clothing worn below the knee within that weight. A hiking or trapeze harness shall have positive buoyancy and shall not weigh more than 6 kilograms 2 kilograms, except that class rules may specify a higher weight up to 4 kilograms. Weights shall be determined as required by Appendix H.”

This is the same wording as currently exists in the 2017-2020 RRS.