"squeezing" up the startline

Thread starter #1
Now then, a coach once told me back in the late '90's that his son (an Olympic hopeful at the time) could actually sit on the start line (well a boat length or two behid it) in the last two minutes before the start and position his body weight / sail / daggerboard / rudder in such a way that he could marginally squeeze "up" towards the starboard end thus creating space to accelerate into 5 seconds before the gun and leaving opponents to windward with no space to do this. The result of this is he could actually "roll" them straight after the start leaving himself with completely unmessed up air!

Does anyone know how to pull this off, think it's only possible in flat water and medium air, if you do please enlighten me as my coach couldn't describe it although he looked like he could visualise it!
It's very easy, and very illegal under the rules (it's clearly a no-no in the interruptations listed here:
http://www.sailing.org/default.asp?...c565?b6jeEm4oBIa5,3P7xSYJ8,,E~?`4AIKV0h0aCYmg )

It involves getting the boat almost head to wind, then pushing the boom out to leeward so the sail starts to back, and at the same time sculling with the rudder from the centerline up to the windward side.... The boat will "crab" nicely sideways to windward...
157800 said:
i have used it. Just be subtle.
If we are talking about the technique described by 49208 above then there is nothing subtle about it. And it is very definitely a Rule 42 violation.

I was second start at a Laser Worlds a few years ago and sat behind the line watching while the first fleet started. It is amazing how easy it is to pick out rule 42 violations from this vantage point - it surely must be the easiest job the judges have all day long. Your eyes are absolutely drawn to the people sculling and the leach flicks once the gun goes. As I sat there during that start my eyes were drawn immediately to a guy with an overactive leach and within nanoseconds the judges were on him with a yellow flag.

My point is that what you may think is subtle in regard to your competitors may well stand out like a sore thumb to the judges. Sitting head to wind holding the boom to leeward and trying to scull the bow down will get you flagged so fast you won't know what happened.

I'd offer that it is better to practice the legal moves for starting so when you get to a judged event you don't find yourself unable to figure out how to get off the line.

The rule 42 interpretations cited above are very clearly written and well worth understanding when racing a boat like a Laser.