Scope and Purpose

This is a practical course intended for those who would like an introduction to mark laying and to allay any fears that it is too hard - it's actually good fun! The course is planned for 20th January 2019 10.00 to 16.00, but the timing may be tweaked to suit the preferences of those wishing to attend.

Expressions of interest should be addressed to the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and will be forwarded to Tim Flatman who is organising.

What does a mark layer do?

  • Lays marks to create a course
  • Gives wind a tide information to the Race Officer
  • Moves marks to suit changes in wind direction/strenth
  • Signals course changes
  • Replaces missing marks

The course introduces and teaches some of the basic skills and understanding needed, including:

  • Personal and club equipment required
  • Sailing Instructions and course configurations
  • Understanding what the Race Officer is considering
  • Duties at Windward, Leeward, Gybe, Start/Finish marks, and at Gates
  • "The Knot" and rope handling
  • Mark and tackle set up
  • Towing and streaming marks
  • Basic GPS operation - distances and bearings - and hand-bearing compass use
  • Basic VHF communications
  • Signalling using flags and Charlie Boards

Knowledge of these can make you a real asset to any Race Officer, and will ensure the successful and professional running of club events. Preparation is everything!

The course is not Death by Powerpoint; nor is it technical, and nor does it result in an RYA qualification.

What you'll need:

Warm, old clothing + Work gloves + (if you have one) a sailing knife (think anchors, rusty chain and weights, old rope!)