Friday, June 22, 2012

4.1.2 When two or more groups of Blockers equal in number are on the track; are more than 10 feet from one another; and no single group meets the pack definition, no pack can be defined. Skaters will be issued a penalty for intentionally creating a no pack situation i.e. destroying the pack (see Section 6.10.2). Both teams are responsible for maintaining a legally defined pack. A skater or group of skaters is always responsible for the consequences of their actions. If their actions create a no pack situation (except those covered in Section, they should be penalized as directed in Sections 6.10.9–6.10.24.

Today’s rule is what defines the “no pack” situation (also called a no pack scenario) we are all becoming ever more used to seeing. 4.1.1 explains what defines a pack. This rule explains what happens when no such definition exists. Two or more groups of Blockers equal in number could be two groups of 4 Blockers; three groups of 2 Blockers; two groups of 3 Blockers; etc. Where this rule mentions no single group meeting the pack definition, that is again in reference to 4.1.1. If there are three groups of 2 Blockers on the track, and one group is 2 pink Blockers, another group is 2 black Blockers, and the third group is 1 pink and 1 black, that group is the pack. However, if the group of 1 pink and 1 black were instead 2 pink or 2 black, and all three groups are more than 10 feet from each other, then no single group would meet the definition of a pack, and no pack can be defined. That is why this is referred to as a “no pack scenario”, because it is a scenario in which there is simply no pack. If a team intentionally creates a no pack situation, they will receive a penalty for it. Pack destruction is only illegal if it meets the definition of illegal pack destruction, as outlined in section 6.10.2 and its subrules. Over the last couple of years the strategy of legally destroying the pack during a power jam has become commonly used. Section 6.10.2 also explains how a no pack scenario can happen legally, especially section, which is referenced in today’s rule. The rule finishes by referencing the rule sections that enumerate penalties to illegal pack destruction actions, which are contained among the rules from 6.10.9 to 6.10.24. Also contained within this rule is the requirement for both teams to maintain a legally defined pack. That is why teams are penalized for illegally destroying the pack.