National Championships/Major Events

Yachting New Zealand has regulations in place for National Championship events and other major regattas to ensure there is value in the title of “National Champion”.

These regulations also aim to ensure National and World Championship events are sailed in accordance with the practices and procedures that apply to major events that shall be of a uniformly high standard of organisation on the water and on shore, and all New Zealand sailors can be informed of the opportunity to compete for the title of “National Champion”.

National championship events will be appointed a national race officer to review your race documentation and provide race management guidence if required.

View Regulation 4.5.4 Yachting New Zealand approval of National Championships and Other Major Events here

If an event fully complies with Regulation 4.5.4, the winner of a Yachting New Zealand National Event will be officially recognised as the National Champion. They will have their name published in the Yachting New Zealand Annual Report and will receive a Yachting New Zealand National Champion certificate.

For all clubs wanting to run a National Championship event there are a few steps that must be taken meet the criteria set in Yachting New Zealand’s Regulation 4.5.4.  The following National Event Guidelines are designed to help with the procedures required and help organising authorities to comply.

Steps to running a National Championship Regatta…

  1. Submit an Application to hold the event to Yachting New Zealand no later than 30 June prior to the event. Requests for dispensation, or approval of on the judging 42....requests must be made in writing to Yachting New Zealand. More below...
  2. Submit a Notice of Race to Yachting New Zealand at least 4 months to the event. 
  3. Submit the Sailing Instructions to Yachting New Zealand at least 2 months prior to the event. 
  4. Submit an Event Report to Yachting New Zealand within two weeks of the completion of the event. 

Downloads of the required documents and links to useful resources and information are all available on the Event Resources page

These guidelines are not intended as a step-by-step guide to organising a regatta.  For more detailed information, please refer to the World Sailing Race Management Manual available from World Sailing website.


Step One: Submit an Application

An National/Major Event Application Form to run the event must be submitted to Yachting New Zealand no later than 30th June. All dates should be published on the Calendar of Events on Yachting New Zealand’s website. 
If you wish to apply for a dispensation to deny the right of appeal (Refer to RRS 70.5) Or, seek approval for on the water judging of Rule 42 (Refer Appendix P) - then please apply in writing to the CEO of Yachting New Zealand - this can be sent via email to Danika Mowlem

Preliminary Notice of Race

  • It is recommended (but not compulsory) to publish a Preliminary Notice of Race in order to give advance notice to potential competitors when and where the event will take place, together with other data that they should know at an early stage.
  • The Preliminary Notice of Race can be published at any time prior to the publication of the Notice of Race.  (For an international or world event the criteria are stricter).  Whilst no timetable is set for this, it is suggested that it be circulated one to two months before the Notice of Race is published.
  • The requirements of this document are not as demanding as for the Notice of Race and do not require Yachting New Zealand approval.  It is generally in the form of a poster and preferably comprises one page.  It must however state when the final Notice of Race will be available.

Step Two: Submit a Notice of Race

  • The Notice of Race (NOR) must be published at least 3 months before the event.
  • Preparation of the NOR is the responsibility of the Organising Authority and must be approved by Yachting New Zealand before being published.
  • The proposed NOR and Entry form should reach Yachting New Zealand at least one month before the publication date (Please allow 2-3 weeks for YNZ checking).
  • The NOR must be written using the YNZ Standard NOR template. This template is designed for users to simply input their relevant event information, and ensures the NOR has everything that is required. Please make sure that you have the correct format and do not use a previous year’s version; it may have been superseded.
  • No other format will be accepted.  If you have a special requirement which you consider falls outside the scope of the standard form, please consult Yachting New Zealand before drafting any new clauses.
  • A NOR forms the basis of a contract between the Organising Authority and competitors.  In turn the competitors can expect the event to be run to the letter of the NOR. 
  • The NOR should not include anything that does not directly relate to the running of the event.  Please note that car parking, social events and other such matters should be included in a separate programme.
  • Organising Authorities wishing to conduct a “No Appeals” event must either appoint an International Jury in accordance with Appendix M, or obtain the prior approval of YNZ and meet all of the requirements of RRS Rule 70.5

Changes to the NOR
Any change to a NOR (once published) must be referred to Yachting New Zealand, which must approve the new version prior to publication.  The new NOR should then be sent to all recipients of the first version with an explanatory note withdrawing the first NOR.  Any competitor, who wishes to withdraw his entry because of the change, is entitled to a full refund.

Entry form
We strongly advise Organising Authorities to use the standard YNZ Standard Entry Form. This has a number of clauses which protect the organisers. Some of the boxes may not be appropriate to your event and should be deleted.

Step Three: Submit Sailing Instructions 

  • Sailing Instructions (SI) for a national event must be submitted to Yachting New Zealand 3 months prior to the event. This allows adequate time for alterations and discussion over any controversial points.  (Please allow 2-3 weeks for YNZ checking.)
  • The Sailing Instructions must be written using the standard YNZ Sailing Instructions template. Please make sure that you have the correct format and do not use a previous year’s version; it may have been superseded.  The intention is to provide the information in a format familiar to sailors, in the order in which they would need it, and in a language which has specific and accepted meanings. 
  • In compiling the Sailing Instructions please use the same wording as used in the Yachting New Zealand Racing Rules of Sailing 2017-2020 e.g. refer to “boats” not “yachts”, “flag” not “code flag”.  If modifying a rule, use the same terminology as in the original rule.  Any change to a rule must be noted with words such as “this modifies rule X”. Note Rule 86 outlines the rules allowed to be changed.
  • If a clause needs to be included which is not catered for in the standard format, please ask for guidance from Yachting New Zealand.  When introducing new ideas, there is frequently a hidden flow-on effect and the potential for ambiguity.  Seeking advice on this can save embarrassing times in the protest room.

The NOR or SI should not include anything that does not directly relate to the running of the event.  Please note that car parking, social events and other such matters should be included in a separate programme.
During the preparation of the SI, organisers should ensure the Race Officer is satisfied with its content and that he / she feels that in the circumstances of the particular event, they are capable of running the event according to the specified rules.

Pre-Event Publicity
Yachting New Zealand is happy to publish an event and Notice of Race on its online Event Calendar . This will be done following NOR approval, or can be submitted on the calendar page by the OA for publication prior to NOR approval.

Step Four: Submit an Event Report

  • Following the conclusion, a National Event Report Form must be sent to Yachting New Zealand no more than two weeks after the event, along with a set of final results. This allows Yachting New Zealand to establish that the event has been run to the standards required, and officially recognise the winner as a National Champion.
  • It is also a means of identifying and addressing any problems and any improvements noted for future occasions.

If you have any queries about National Events, please contact Danika on (09) 361 4028 or email danika@yachtingnz.org.nz