farr40 replied to Mid's topic in Ocean Racing AnarchyIF there was a mistake, the mistake was not reading the SI carefully, however, the act of turning off the AIS was not a mistake. Without being on board, we don't know for sure. There may not have been a mistake at all, just like the people who used to not turn on navigation lights until hours after sunset and they have changed course, etc. Those people made a conscious decision to violate the rules and decided to take the risk, knowing that a) it is unlikely a competitor would file a chicken shit protest about navigation lights and b) even if a protest is filed, they can defend by saying their batteries were low and their lights are very dim, etc. It is entirely possible that the Wild Oats situation is a modern extension of that mentality. The act of turning off the AIS was not a mistake. It was most likely a deliberate choice (someone could have fallen against it, etc, but very unlikely given the timing of it going off line). I have been in discussions with boats that don't want their AIS to transmit (if it is not required by the rules) but they still want to receive other's transmissions for the tactical advantage.
farr40 replied to Mid's topic in Ocean Racing AnarchyHit it on the head. Richard's quote that "it" was not mandatory and his quick excuse that "it didn't matter because we could see each other the whole race" suggests an intentional choice they made to go stealth, knowing all the information AIS provides which visual confirmation does not. If its wasn't mandatory, nothing wrong with doing it, but it was and Richards either didin't read the SI's or worse, knowingly turned it off. Its a low class move similar to (in the days before trackers and AIS) boats that didn't turn on their nav lights until hours after sunset so that nearby competitors would lose visual id. Glen is correct, chicken shit by the R/C, but WO should be chucked none the less.