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13 April 2005, 02:32 pm
Pindar Protest Hearing Tomorrow
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2004/2005 Global Challenge
Cape Town, South Africa

Tonight marks the Civic Reception and Crew Arrival Party at the Royal Cape Yacht Club, and tomorrow, the start of the holiday period for skippers and crew. However, for Pindar tomorrow also marks the day of their Protest Hearing after an incident on leg four.
This evening starts with the Civic Reception, hosted by the Executive Deputy Mayor Councillor Gawa SAMUELS. Following this the Crew Arrival Party will take place at the Royal Cape Yacht Club - a chance for the teams to officially celebrate their arrival in Cape Town together. And nobody will have to work with a sore head in the morning as tomorrow is the first of eight well-deserved days of rest and relaxation away from the yachts for crew and skippers alike.

For Pindar though, tomorrow is all about the Protest Hearing. They are the only team being protested after an incident in leg four prompted the Race Committee to protest the team.

The Global Challenge Race Committee announced their intention to protest Pindar on 31 March, 'for a breach of RRS [Racing Rules for Sailing] 42.1 following notification, under General Sailing Instruction 20, of the use of their engine in reverse gear at 1530 (local time) on the 27 March 2005.'

Pindar was at position 44.39S 50.33E when the incident in question occurred, in 17/18 knots of headwind. After a report of a sluggish helm, kelp was found to be trailing under the transom. Assuming the rudder was fouled, Pindar was brought hove-to and the crew attempted to dislodge the kelp using the boat hook.

In the heat of the moment the engine was engaged for approximately one to three minutes in reverse gear only. This time, again using the boot hook, a large ball of kelp was freed from it's position where it had indeed been fouling the rudder before racing resumed.

The crew then recognized, with the benefit of hindsight, that this action may be regarded as a breach of RRS Rule 42.1 and immediately notified the race committee. In accordance with the Sailing Instructions, they presented a full written report to the Race Committee within 24 hours of the leg finish.

The Protest Hearing will take place at 1000 hours local time at the Royal Cape Yacht Club in Cape Town. The International Jury, appointed by ISAF, will hear Pindar's case and award any penalties if deemed necessary. The outcome of the hearing will be posted on the Global Challenge Website after the hearing.

Dan Wedgwood (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Pindar finish leg four:© onEdition
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