/ Paralympic Sports
Updated: 2008-08-29 16:03
Competition is run under the International Sailing Federations (ISAF) Racing Rules of Sailing, the IFDS Race Management and Classification Manuals.
Weather permitting, races consist of nine separate runs. Final placings are determined by the accumulation of points scored in each race. The team scoring the lowest total points being the winner. At the starting signal all boats pass a virtual starting line (between two marks in the direction of the first rounding mark - "upwind leg" in sailors terminology). In this leg, tactics, boat-speed and boat handling are very important because the boats need to fight their way into the wind. After rounding this mark boats proceed on a leg to the down-wind mark and round this as well. Again they move towards the windward mark and this continues for almost one hour (the marks are placed approximately 1 nautical mile (1852m) from each other). The finish consists of passing through a virtual line between two marks.
There are slight modifications in equipment in order to suit the athlete's ability. The yachts used in Paralympic competition have keels, mainly because this design provides greater stability. These keelboats have open cockpits to allow more room for the sailors. Sailors race under the fleet racing format, meaning all yachts race the course at the same time.
(Credit: IPC. Click here for further information.)