Q: I have a flag with my boat logo on it and another with the logo of my beverage of choice on it. Am I allowed to fly those under Class Rule 2.8?
A: You can under certain conditions. Generally speaking, you can fly whatever flags and display any advertising you want if you are not racing. CR 2.8 applies to boats and competitors while racing. CR 2.8 also invokes World Sailing Regulation 20. There may be other rules for the event which limit advertising.
Regulation 20 allows the Organizing Authority of an event, in the Notice of Race, to require supplied bow numbers, backstay flags, and other event advertising to be displayed at all times. Also, Regulation 20 sets aside certain portions of the boat for specific stake-holders, such as the organizing authority, sailmaker’s marks, etc. You cannot interfere with those areas if they are in use.
Please keep in mind that our sport and especially our big events depend on sponsorship. Therefore, please limit your advertising displays so that you are not directly competing with them, whether allowed by the NOR or not.
The term "Advertising" is defined in World Sailing Regulation 20.1.1.
The terms "Racing" and "Rule" are defined the Racing Rules of Sailing.
The current WS Regulations can be found at https://www.sailing.org/documents/regulations/regulations.php.