Class Rule and Builders Manual Compliance


The International 49er Class has recently been reminded of the requirements for its members to comply with the ISAF Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS), the International 49er Class Rules and the ISAF approved Builders Construction manual when competing at events.

The International 49er dinghy class rule is a CLOSED CLASS Rule.

Closed Class Rule means “where anything not specifically permitted by the class rules is prohibited”


          78.1        A boat’s owner and any other person in charge shall ensure that the boat is maintained to comply with her class rules and that              her measurement or rating certificate, if any, remains valid.

(The 49er being a Manufacturers Controlled class does not have a measurement certificate but the requirement to maintain your boat in compliance with the class rules remains).

(This means that it is the sailors responsibility to ensure compliance and not anyone else)

Builders Construction Manual – Although not a part of event measurers “toolbox”, accessibility to the ISAF Technical Department relating to any equipment or manufacturing concerns is available and will be used if found necessary.    

Following on from the concerns expressed to the Class by others, the International 49er Class Executive have issued a directive to its measurers that for all future events a ZERO Tolerance attitude is to be taken by the event measurers.

What does this mean?

In simple terms the following should be observed;

  1. Repairs to equipment only where permitted in the class rule may be undertaken.
  2. Equipment presented to an event measurer that has been repaired that is not within the class rule will be rejected.
  3. Additional reinforcement of manufacturers supplied equipment (i.e. Wing inboard ends) will be rejected.
  4. There are some fittings that have covers over them that do not comply with the Class Rule. The class rule allows for “coverings made of any soft material” over exposed fittings. Hard covering needs to be removed.
  5. Event measurers shall report any non-compliance to the Event Race Committee for actioning. This is a requirement of the Class Rules AND the Racing Rules of Sailing.
  6. Teams are well advised to consider their equipment for event use before entering a pre-event measurement.
  7. Equipment that has already been rejected has been recorded and this information will be sent to event organisers for reference.
  8. Modifications that are not specifically permitted including those such as stainless steel or alloy inserts in the holes in the wings are not permitted, even if they seem like a good idea.

If there are common modifications that are currently widespread throughout the fleet, but which are currently not permitted by the class rules, then as members of the Class Association you are entitled to put forward such proposals to change the class rules to the ICA Technical Committee for consideration.  This is the appropriate course of action.  Making modifications because others are doing so or because it seems like a good idea and without first consulting the Class Rules or Technical Committee first is not advisable.

If you see modifications or repairs you do not believe to be permitted by the class rules, then you are entitled to protest the boat in question, or at least bring it to the attention of the event measurer.  Do not simply copy the idea and make similar modifications to your boat without first checking if it complies with the class rules.

The Class Executive are adamant that the Zero tolerance approach be used in the 2015 RIO Test Event and has already instructed its measurement team of the need to follow such.