Link to Word version (.doc) of this report


From the chairman, technical committee.
Report for 2003-2004
There were no new rules during this period. It is pleasing to see how enthusiastically the new section
size and materials for the boom have been taken up.

The International Contender class rules were written almost 40 years ago. ISAF have decided that class
rules and measurement forms for all International Classes should be brought into a new format, which
uses the definitions found in the Equipment Rules of Sailing (E.R.S.). In the next year I intend to
bring us into line with these rules. Obviously this has to be done without changing the intent of our

We had one example this year where a sailmaker attempted to exploit a change in definition (the
headboard) in the current ERS to create a ‘big head’ sail. This was clearly against the intent of the rule,
and we ruled against it.

So you will be asked this year to vote to allow me to work with ISAF to create rules worded to keep
the boat as it is, but in line with ISAF’s standard format.

The International Contender continues to evolve, maintaining the modernity it had when Ben Lexcen
first designed it. This year you will be asked to consider and vote on minor changes to keep the boat
up to date.

At the AGM in 2002 (Black Rock) a proposal was agreed to move forward on a new design for a sail
to make use of modern sailmaking advances, and to allow a higher boom which would, by making
tacking more efficient, improve the appeal of the boat to new sailors, and increase the tactical nature of
the boat. I have to report that there has been lots of talk but little action, largely because it has proved
difficult to come up with a working plan for a sailmaker. I am reluctant to commit ICA funds to the
project unless there is a high chance of success. The current consensus is that the sail should not be
fully battened, but maybe would have two full length battens supporting a larger roach. It will also
have a boom pivoted near the base of the mast and angled upwards. For this project to go ahead we
need more ideas from the members of the association to work on.

The following proposed rule changes to be discussed and voted on at the AGM at Riva del Garda,

1.Proposal to adopt the ISAF E.R.S.(2005-2008) and to permit the restructuring of our rules to
the new format of the ISAF. The changes involve using current definitions of equipment, and
incorporation of values (such as sail stiffening) which currently are found in separate tables.

It is your committee’s recommendation that we take up ISAF’s offer to
redraught our rules to according to their new format. We ask the meeting to endorse this. As the
changes will be in wording only, there will be no need to submit this to postal ballot.

2) Rule 17.2
Reference to IYRU 1986 sail measurement instructions -change to “current ISAF Equipment rules of
Sailing (ERS)”.
Effect of proposed change: brings rule up to date.
New rule 17.2 The sail shall be constructed and measured in accordance with the ISAF Equipment
Rules of Sailing current at the time of fundamental measurement.

3) New Rule no.17.6
Effect of proposed change: to fix the dimensions of the head of the sail.
Reason: Changes in the definitions of parts of the sail in the current ERS require us to fix the
dimensions of the head of the sail without reference to the headboard, which is not defined in the ERS.
This will remove any doubt over the maximum dimension of the head of the sail and prevent the
construction of ‘big head’ sails using multiple layers of cloth to form an effectively oversized
Old rule 17.6 “The dimension of the headboard in any direction shall not exceed 120 mm”
New rule 17.6 “The dimension of the headboard in any direction shall not exceed 120 mm. The aft
head point shall have a maximum dimension of 140 mm”
4) New rule 17.8 This rule refers to the headboard as a measurement point. The new rule will refer to the aft head point.
Old rule 17.8 “The sail shall project not more than 5mm past the edge of a straight line joining the
headboard, or ends of the batten pockets or clew eyelet.”

New rule 17.8 “The sail shall project not more than 5mm past the edge of a straight line joining the aft head point, or ends of the batten pockets or clew eyelet.”

5) Rule 13.1
Effect of proposed change: To allow 2 part masts, which will aid in transport of the masts.
Current rules prevent the use of 2-part masts. While this rule has no effect on the sailing qualities of
the boat, it does on occasions cause problems during transport of boats. It is therefore redundant.
Old rule 13.1 “….All sections of the mast must be permanently fixed together…..”
New rule 13.1 1 “….The mast may be composed of two parts, the join being between the upper edge of band 2 and the lower edge of band 3”.

Rule 13.1
Effect of proposed change: To remove ambiguity in the definition of the mast section.
The old rules specified “inherently straight”. ISAF inform us that we should not use this term, instead
we should have a measurement with upper and lower limits. It is our experience that many masts are
manufactured with a slight bend, and of course bends may occur during sailing. To allow for this it is
proposed that a maximum ‘set’ of 50mm will be allowed. To make the measurement consistent it will
be performed with the mast supported at bands 1 and 3, and measured from the heel point to the lower
edge of band 4.

New rule is “straight, maximum allowed deviation from a straight line joining the mast foot to the
lower edge of band 4 of 50mm measured along the rear face of the mast while supported at band no
1 and 3.”

Alan R.Mollatt
Chairman, I.C.A. technical committee