Archive for January, 2011

PostHeaderIcon Polar Diagram

Polar diagram — a graphical chart that plots target performance data for a specific boat. Includes theoretical boat speed and heeling angle for every true wind speed and true wind angle combination, along with the associated upwind and downwind VMGs; i.e., velocity made good against the wind direction. Also known as a boat performance table and polars. See also: isochrone and velocity prediction program. Compare to: sail crossover chart.

PostHeaderIcon Can Racing

Can racing — inshore racing around the marks of a multi-leg racecourse. See also: buoy racing.

PostHeaderIcon Piano

Piano — a term used variously for the pit crew member, for the location where this crew member works, and for the clutch banks or stopper banks that hold halyards and control lines. Keyboard is also a term used.

PostHeaderIcon Bearing Gain

heading up in a lift or pinching in a header to gain height on a competitor. Compare to: pulling bearing.

PostHeaderIcon DPL

a non-Racing Rules of Sailing scoring abbreviation for a discretionary scoring penalty issued by the protest committee against a competitor who has violated a procedural rule but not a racing rule. This has been replaced by the official scoring abbreviation DPI. See Racing Rules of Sailing 2013 – 2016 Appendix A11.

PostHeaderIcon Tacking Line

Tacking line – a line used during a tack to help a genoa around a babystay and across the foredeck. It is typically connected half-way along an overlapping genoa’s foot. Compare to: retriever line. See also: dive the clew.

PostHeaderIcon R Flag

Some fleets will display an International Code Flag “R” (red background divided by a yellow cross) from the signal boat at the finish of the current race to show that the race committee intends to run another race that day. Some fleets will display an R flag ashore to show that the race committee intends to run races that day. Other fleets display an R flag to indicate that marks shall be sailed in reverse order. No R flag uses are specified in the Racing Rules of Sailing for 2009-2012. The R flag’s specific meaning will be detailed in the appropriate Sailing Instructions or by local convention.

PostHeaderIcon LanCote

LanCote® – a lanolin-based heavy lubricant and anti-seize compound from Forespar. Available as a spray or paste, LanCote stands up better under high loads and continuous motion than anti-seize liquids, but is more prone to picking up dirt.

PostHeaderIcon Big Squeeze

Big squeeze — the maneuver by which a boat ahead and to leeward sails up into a position that gives a boat to windward and behind dirty air. The leeward boat then also takes advantage of the resulting lifted flow. See also: wind shadow.

PostHeaderIcon Choker

Choker – a control line used to adjust a headsail’s vertical sheeting angle. Used on a boat without jib lead cars or when using a reaching sheet lead well aft. Also known as a downhauler. See also barber hauler and inhauler.


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