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Battle Flag Etiquette


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Once upon a time, when we were actually holding regattas, boats would proudly fly their battle flags (pennants won at previous regattas) at the dock. 

Assuming there will be regattas again one day, what if you sell your boat and get another one?

Is it bad taste to fly your old battle flags on your new boat, or do you have to start your flag collection from scratch with each boat?

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12 minutes ago, gspot said:

Once upon a time, when we were actually holding regattas, boats would proudly fly their battle flags (pennants won at previous regattas) at the dock. 

Assuming there will be regattas again one day, what if you sell your boat and get another one?

Is it bad taste to fly your old battle flags on your new boat, or do you have to start your flag collection from scratch with each boat?

No

Been There Won That!

Fly them proudly

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I dunno, if the battle flag has some family history why not hang onto it... it's not really part of the normal gear and equipment etc... 

What's the chances the boats name is gonna change at some point anyway and the flag will end up in the dumpster?

If you like it, keep it.. if it's a condition of the sale, then let it go... 

 

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2 hours ago, gspot said:

Once upon a time, when we were actually holding regattas, boats would proudly fly their battle flags (pennants won at previous regattas) at the dock. 

Assuming there will be regattas again one day, what if you sell your boat and get another one?

Is it bad taste to fly your old battle flags on your new boat, or do you have to start your flag collection from scratch with each boat?

Retire your flags, It's over

 

32905604-8708651-A_boat_decked_out_in_Tr

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2 hours ago, gspot said:

Once upon a time, when we were actually holding regattas, boats would proudly fly their battle flags (pennants won at previous regattas) at the dock. 

Assuming there will be regattas again one day, what if you sell your boat and get another one?

Is it bad taste to fly your old battle flags on your new boat, or do you have to start your flag collection from scratch with each boat?

Never heard of this. Then again I am a Quaker.

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1 hour ago, Bump-n-Grind said:

I dunno, if the battle flag has some family history why not hang onto it... it's not really part of the normal gear and equipment etc... 

What's the chances the boats name is gonna change at some point anyway and the flag will end up in the dumpster?

If you like it, keep it.. if it's a condition of the sale, then let it go... 

 

 

47 minutes ago, Sneaky Sanchez said:

It's worth mentioning that there is a distinct difference between the battle flag, and the brag flags.

Good points.

I was mostly concerned about committing a faux pas by flying the regatta pennants (brag flags) on the new boat. 

Sounds like it's not a problem.

Thanks all!!!

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I don't like battle flags. A little too "Rah Rah cheerleader" for me.

I sort of liked the little blue pennants for each Ensenada Race sailed. These showed the owner's participation or the boat's. You decide and nobody cares about it. I like when a boat has so many they reached all the way to the deck! I never flew one, but it's kind of cool.

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26 minutes ago, Cristoforo said:

The 'brag'  flags of a sold boat go with the seller to a box in his attic. The new boat didn't win those flags.  

That's exactly what I was wondering - the flags are really won by the boat/owner combo.

Either one changes and you retire the flags?

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2 hours ago, Cristoforo said:

The 'brag'  flags of a sold boat go with the seller to a box in his attic. The new boat didn't win those flags.  
The battle flag - seller would keep to hang behind his bar in his basement. Or use on new boat. 
New trophies can go on the main floor of the house  

Its all in here chapter 12 

ste-chapman-piloting-seamanship-68th-edition.jpg     

 

Made me look...  Chapter 12 is Weather. 

LOL!

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My Dad sent the big Battle flag along to the new owner who has yet to win any races against a tight fleet, so it’s more of a season end ritual for now. He kept his many Bay flag roosters and the fleet championship flags hang with the other championship flags at our club.

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So no boat can "win" a race or regatta without the crew.  There are good crews that win regattas with Boat X, and not as good crews that don't win regattas with the same kind of boat.  Brag flags go with the owner/crew, not the boat IMHO.  That said, really good crews don't need any brag flags, they just go out an win the next regatta, and everyone knows them...

Battle flags go on the owner's "I love me" wall...or can be the backdrop of the trophy case for all the trophies you won with the old boat if that's your thing...

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6 hours ago, sledracr said:

I like 'em.  Makes it much easier to find my boat in the marina after libations....

Aren't you a little long in the tooth to be sleeping on the boat at the regatta?

 

Hang them in the garage. Go win new ones.  Hang those in the garage too. 

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10 hours ago, LB 15 said:

I never knew that if you win a race they give you a flag...

Been a while since you went to Hobart?

Or maybe haven't been arriving until the winners have left?  (Not surprising with the Line Honours winner,  I've been passed by one heading north outside Tasman, & we finished on the 30th!)

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8 hours ago, TUBBY said:

Been a while since you went to Hobart?

Or maybe haven't been arriving until the winners have left?  (Not surprising with the Line Honours winner,  I've been passed by one heading north outside Tasman, & we finished on the 30th!)

No just trying to inject a little self depreciating humor into a rather pointless topic. 

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Battle flags are colourful and fun and can add to the occasion. Especially en masse.

Don’t care what they are, how old they are, how many there are, but they do say something about you and your boat, so choose wisely and for the occasion. I used to fly an international K flag with my lot, but very few people ever understood the significance or the message.

The only battleflag etiquette necessary is to take them down at night if it is windy.... they make a racket if you are trying to sleep on board or nearby. Especially if there is a marina full of them....

 

014240E5-50B6-4BC5-AFC8-5CFB959E3416.jpeg

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Back in the day, when the plastic boats would start hoisting their paltry brag strings, the R boats would put up 50 yrs of flags. They belong to the boat, if it’s sold and sailed under the continuing name. Just as the boats name gets engraved on the silver. 

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Seems like if it is a boat with some legacy, selling them with the boat would be cool so they stay connected.  Write your name or sign them to mark your place in history.

If they aren't going to be used by the new owner of the old boat, you should keep them and fly them on the new boat.  But pick out the best of the best ones that you have memories of winning, and mark on the flags that they are from the old boat.  And then as they get tired or as you win new ones you can replace them with new regatta flags.  Say every time you get a new flag that you won with the new boat, you retire an old one.  Hang it up in your garage/shop or give it a viking funeral by burning with rum....

I grew up racing on Lake Ontario and it was impressive to see some of the successful racers and all the regatta flags they had up the forestay and down the backstay!!  Some even only flew their 1st place flags...

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1 hour ago, 10thTonner said:

Is that an Anglo-American thing? That last time a boat was given a flag for winning a race over here must have been at Kiel week 1899 or so... 

I think you can remove the Anglo.. I've never heard of it in the UK... if it happens it must be rare..

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8 hours ago, LionessRacing said:

Back in the day, when the plastic boats would start hoisting their paltry brag strings, the R boats would put up 50 yrs of flags. They belong to the boat, if it’s sold and sailed under the continuing name. Just as the boats name gets engraved on the silver. 

There used to be R at Rocky River.

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5 hours ago, Pog said:

by burning with rum....

I grew up racing on Lake Ontario and it was impressive to see some of the successful racers and all the regatta flags they had up the forestay and down the backstay!!  Some even only flew their 1st place flags...

Ah, do you recall Kathea II ? (I was foredeck on Vitesse, not quite as successful)

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On 3/16/2021 at 2:10 PM, Cristoforo said:

The 'brag'  flags of a sold boat go with the seller to a box in his attic. The new boat didn't win those flags.  
The battle flag - seller would keep to hang behind his bar in his basement. Or use on new boat. 
New trophies can go on the main floor of the house  

Its all in here chapter 12 

ste-chapman-piloting-seamanship-68th-edition.jpg     

 

Read that, got the cert...LOL..  Dad made mr take it before he let me take the big boat out alone...  I think i got the cert at about 13....

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15 hours ago, LB 15 said:

No just trying to inject a little self depreciating humor into a rather pointless topic. 

Yeah,  that's the way I read it,  but if you leave an opening that big someone just won't be able to resist it.

This time it was me!

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Battle flag is the boats name/logo stays with boat, the boats calling card on display.

brag flag is the races won, etc stays with owner, you dont give your trophys to the new owner do you?

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The nearest thing to a battle flag I've ever seen is a race plaque, issued for fitting to any boat completing the race. Some boats have many as the race is having its 60th event this year. The plaque is about 4inches by 1inch.

https://images.app.goo.gl/9F2Lr7f4ACCRQkqJ8

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6 hours ago, TUBBY said:

Yeah,  that's the way I read it,  but if you leave an opening that big someone just won't be able to resist it.

This time it was me!

Fair enough- that’s why I bowled that slow full toss in the first place. But you need to put them on the roof of the stand, not just a gentle push though mid on for a single.

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2 hours ago, LB 15 said:

Fair enough- that’s why I bowled that slow full toss in the first place. But you need to put them on the roof of the stand, not just a gentle push though mid on for a single.

You should see what would happen on the Haverford College cricket pitch when a converted baseball player at bat received a full toss. Here they had all been well schooled in proper cricket batting technique and were really very good but the moment that ball came in full, immediate gear switching, bat up, and WHAM! Baseball style for a six.

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On 3/18/2021 at 2:56 AM, The Q said:

I think you can remove the Anglo.. I've never heard of it in the UK... if it happens it must be rare..

Not even American.  On the US east coast, I've never seen any trophy flags awarded.  I know it's common on the great lakes.

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On 3/18/2021 at 3:40 AM, fastyacht said:

There used to be R at Rocky River.

There was a fleet of like 5 or 6 last I checked in the early 00's, has the fleet dissolved? 

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On 3/16/2021 at 8:43 PM, Rain Man said:

Keep the battle flag, and also remove the name from the boat as part of the sale unless you are ok with the next owner using the same name. 

Names stay with boats.   New owner can decide to take the risk of changing but there are the boat's feelings to be considered here.

Its not like you have to change your name whenever ypu get a new job

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1 hour ago, EYESAILOR said:

Names stay with boats.   New owner can decide to take the risk of changing but there are the boat's feelings to be considered here.

Its not like you have to change your name whenever ypu get a new job

I mentioned it because the previous owner of my last racing boat asked us to change the name after we had purchased it - he wanted to use the name on his next boat.  We refused.  He was mad at us for years, especially since the name became associated with our racing program and everywhere he went he was reminded of that.  He's dead now, so I guess he isn't mad any more.

If you are planning to re-use the name, and don't want the name used on the old boat, you have to take it off the old boat prior to sale.

I agree that boat names should not be changed, because the small gods that live within them are offended, and must be placated somehow.  Usually expenditure of the GDP of a small country on renovations and upgrades will do it.

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27 minutes ago, Cristoforo said:

Bollocks. It’s very common to require a name change when selling a boat. Sometimes the seller will pay to have it done. How many Pyewackets or Anarchy’s or Hustlers do you want sailing around? 

Friend bought a J105 and the seller came 3 months later and asked him to change the name. Offered $500 to cover the cost. Friend said sure. He didn’t care about the name he was gonna change it anyway. 

 



 

 

This would probably have worked for us too.   At the time (early 80's) it was expensive to change the name.  Vinyl lettering is much cheaper now.  $500 buys a lot of beer for the crew.

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2 hours ago, EYESAILOR said:

Names stay with boats.   New owner can decide to take the risk of changing but there are the boat's feelings to be considered here.

 

1 hour ago, Rain Man said:

I mentioned it because the previous owner of my last racing boat asked us to change the name after we had purchased it - he wanted to use the name on his next boat.  We refused.  He was mad at us for years, especially since the name became associated with our racing program and everywhere he went he was reminded of that.  He's dead now, so I guess he isn't mad any more.

 

27 minutes ago, Cristoforo said:

Bollocks. It’s very common to require a name change when selling a boat. Sometimes the seller will pay to have it done. How many Pyewackets or Anarchy’s or Hustlers do you want sailing around? 

As an owner I can understand the sentimentality of a boat name, especially when the boat name is a play on the owner's name (e.g. Wild Oats).

But as a competitor I find it particularly annoying when somebody sells their boat, keeps the name, and shows up at a regatta with a different boat.

I hate reading the fleet list and looking forward to dicing it up with our arch nemesis, only to find the owner got a new boat and it isn't the same thing after all. 

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There is a proper ceremony when renaming a boat, some kind of alcohol is involved.  And words.  That being said, if the name is Predator and the flag arrives looking like Barney then when the ship is destroyed in the hurricane the flag goes with it.  True story.

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10 hours ago, Rain Man said:

I agree that boat names should not be changed, because the small gods that live within them are offended, and must be placated somehow.  Usually expenditure of the GDP of a small country on renovations and upgrades will do it.

The Penates?

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9 hours ago, gspot said:

 

 

As an owner I can understand the sentimentality of a boat name, especially when the boat name is a play on the owner's name (e.g. Wild Oats).

But as a competitor I find it particularly annoying when somebody sells their boat, keeps the name, and shows up at a regatta with a different boat.

I hate reading the fleet list and looking forward to dicing it up with our arch nemesis, only to find the owner got a new boat and it isn't the same thing after all. 

Imagine if Courageous had been named Intrepid!  That would have royally pissed me off!

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On 3/18/2021 at 1:04 PM, LB 15 said:

Fair enough- that’s why I bowled that slow full toss in the first place. But you need to put them on the roof of the stand, not just a gentle push though mid on for a single.

Or you get crickets......

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On 3/16/2021 at 1:21 PM, Somebody Else said:

I don't like battle flags. A little too "Rah Rah cheerleader" for me.

I sort of liked the little blue pennants for each Ensenada Race sailed. These showed the owner's participation or the boat's. You decide and nobody cares about it. I like when a boat has so many they reached all the way to the deck! I never flew one, but it's kind of cool.

After you accumulated ten blue pennants they gave you a yellow pennant and you started over with blue pennants.   Always impressive to see a boat with two yellow pennants but the champ has to be Dr. Vic Stern (RIP), who  sailed in the Newport to Ensenada race for 45 (4 yellow pennants) years on his catamaran the Imi Loa, his last race being in 2006.  You can't meet a nicer sailor.

kpj5jr-27ensenada1lg.jpg.95252e12b6b32729b132cb67cc2298d4.jpg

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On 3/19/2021 at 7:22 AM, bgytr said:

Not even American.  On the US east coast, I've never seen any trophy flags awarded.  I know it's common on the great lakes.

I haven't been in years, but at Cowes Race Week the winner of every race received a flag.

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On 3/16/2021 at 4:40 PM, gspot said:

That's exactly what I was wondering - the flags are really won by the boat/owner combo.

Either one changes and you retire the flags?

I'm not sure I understand.  I win a flag, I stuff it in the plastic bin with all the other flags.  Why would I brag at the start of a race?

As they say in the stock market - previous performance does not in ANY way guarantee future performance.

I've seen it in the parades, like in the Black River at the start of the Port Huron to Mac.  But they drop them the second they are out of the river - they just put them up for the spectators.  But we didn't bother with that either.

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1 hour ago, Grrr... said:

they just put them up for the spectators

^^^ This is really what it's all about.

Lots of non-racer spectators wander the docks, and colourful flags create a more festive atmosphere, regardless of what they are really. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 3/16/2021 at 9:31 AM, VWAP said:

Retire your flags, It's over

 

32905604-8708651-A_boat_decked_out_in_Tr

The FBI is looking to interview that boat.

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On 3/20/2021 at 3:59 AM, gspot said:

 

 

As an owner I can understand the sentimentality of a boat name, especially when the boat name is a play on the owner's name (e.g. Wild Oats).

But as a competitor I find it particularly annoying when somebody sells their boat, keeps the name, and shows up at a regatta with a different boat.

I hate reading the fleet list and looking forward to dicing it up with our arch nemesis, only to find the owner got a new boat and it isn't the same thing after all. 

Owners should remove the previous sponsors logos as well.

A6405FBA-E5B0-4F99-8B11-97F0EF3D51D2.jpeg

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