I believe it is illegal to reach across an uncrossable barrier to punch in sprints, but the course setter should also set flags so that such a thing isn't possible. At that control, the fence wasn't actually denoted on the map (just the wall) but there was a strip of olive green on the north side on the fence so either way you had to reach across an uncrossable barrier (olive green or a wall) to punch. (I reached it from the south side because that's where it looked like the circle was centered; the clue didn't provide any info about side.) There were a few other cases (e.g. #4 on sprint C, #3 on sprint A) where punching required crossing something forbidden, and some places where it you had to step into a flower bed that wasn't mapped as olive green but seems like it should have been.
Adding mine here=
No, to the rules it is not legal to reach through or over un-crossable walls or fences. They should be treated as impenetrable and infinitely tall.
But you make the point, course setting, and flag placement should make it not possible to violate this, and shouldn't make it questionable if you might be able or not. Pass-ability should always be clear and exaggerated at least to the minimum separations of the mapping specs.
I don't like eye sight tests, where the flag is placed and legal approaches should be plainly decipherable from the map or you shouldn't use that as a control site.
These are o-maps, not engineering site plans. Think the RIT map is good for all that I went.
As well the olive green on a sprint map should also be out of bounds, but we had a control in an olive green area. The gardens at RIT would mark a lot less out of bounds olive green and leave it to common courtesy, and in sensitive areas, purple hash to make more notable and try to not make passing through tempting as best you can for such areas.
It was all fine for a local event, not a terribly big deal.
For control #8, I think it would have helped a lot if the control description had indicated it was on the south side of the wall. The band of olive green theoretically should have been enough to say that it shouldn't be approached from the north, but it was very narrow and not at all obvious to me at competition speed, at least to my aging eyes. (Plus it's hard to take the olive green totally seriously when there was at least one control that was surrounded by olive green.) I did read the control description hoping for an indication of what side to approach the control from, but there was none. And the control circle looked to me, even viewing the pdf file at high magnification, to be essentially perfectly centered on the wall. So I (illegally as I know now) reached across the fence to punch.
Overall, the courses were very good, this quibble aside.
Interesting - I think many of us were equally logical on that;-) [And I had checked the clue to see if there was an indication]
I also dislike the use of an OOB area as a barrier, esp if that barrier is not necc clear.
I do enjoy the sprints we have had at RIT, and hope to keep returning from time to time.
Yes, I don't think any of the discussion about little details should discourage any of the course setters! The sprints are fun.
Right, we definitely don't want to discourage anyone from setting sprint courses, I really liked them. But that doesn't mean there can't be lessons learned -- in this case, at least in my opinion. all ambiguity would have been removed if the control description had indicated it was on the south side of the wall. And possibly offsetting the control circle about 1 mm to the south would have helped also.