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    • UnderDawg

      A Few Simple Rules   05/22/2017

      Sailing Anarchy is a very lightly moderated site. This is by design, to afford a more free atmosphere for discussion. There are plenty of sailing forums you can go to where swearing isn't allowed, confrontation is squelched and, and you can have a moderator finger-wag at you for your attitude. SA tries to avoid that and allow for more adult behavior without moderators editing your posts and whacking knuckles with rulers. We don't have a long list of published "thou shalt nots" either, and this is by design. Too many absolute rules paints us into too many corners. So check the Terms of Service - there IS language there about certain types of behavior that is not permitted. We interpret that lightly and permit a lot of latitude, but we DO reserve the right to take action when something is too extreme to tolerate (too racist, graphic, violent, misogynistic, etc.). Yes, that is subjective, but it allows us discretion. Avoiding a laundry list of rules allows for freedom; don't abuse it. However there ARE a few basic rules that will earn you a suspension, and apparently a brief refresher is in order. 1) Allegations of pedophilia - there is no tolerance for this. So if you make allegations, jokes, innuendo or suggestions about child molestation, child pornography, abuse or inappropriate behavior with minors etc. about someone on this board you will get a time out. This is pretty much automatic; this behavior can have real world effect and is not acceptable. Obviously the subject is not banned when discussion of it is apropos, e.g. talking about an item in the news for instance. But allegations or references directed at or about another poster is verboten. 2) Outing people - providing real world identifiable information about users on the forums who prefer to remain anonymous. Yes, some of us post with our real names - not a problem to use them. However many do NOT, and if you find out someone's name keep it to yourself, first or last. This also goes for other identifying information too - employer information etc. You don't need too many pieces of data to figure out who someone really is these days. Depending on severity you might get anything from a scolding to a suspension - so don't do it. I know it can be confusing sometimes for newcomers, as SA has been around almost twenty years and there are some people that throw their real names around and their current Display Name may not match the name they have out in the public. But if in doubt, you don't want to accidentally out some one so use caution, even if it's a personal friend of yours in real life. 3) Posting While Suspended - If you've earned a timeout (these are fairly rare and hard to get), please observe the suspension. If you create a new account (a "Sock Puppet") and return to the forums to post with it before your suspension is up you WILL get more time added to your original suspension and lose your Socks. This behavior may result a permanent ban, since it shows you have zero respect for the few rules we have and the moderating team that is tasked with supporting them. Check the Terms of Service you agreed to; they apply to the individual agreeing, not the account you created, so don't try to Sea Lawyer us if you get caught. Just don't do it. Those are the three that will almost certainly get you into some trouble. IF YOU SEE SOMEONE DO ONE OF THESE THINGS, please do the following: Refrain from quoting the offending text, it makes the thread cleanup a pain in the rear Press the Report button; it is by far the best way to notify Admins as we will get e-mails. Calling out for Admins in the middle of threads, sending us PM's, etc. - there is no guarantee we will get those in a timely fashion. There are multiple Moderators in multiple time zones around the world, and anyone one of us can handle the Report and all of us will be notified about it. But if you PM one Mod directly and he's off line, the problem will get dealt with much more slowly. Other behaviors that you might want to think twice before doing include: Intentionally disrupting threads and discussions repeatedly. Off topic/content free trolling in threads to disrupt dialog Stalking users around the forums with the intent to disrupt content and discussion Repeated posting of overly graphic or scatological porn content. There are plenty web sites for you to get your freak on, don't do it here. And a brief note to Newbies... No, we will not ban people or censor them for dropping F-bombs on you, using foul language, etc. so please don't report it when one of our members gives you a greeting you may find shocking. We do our best not to censor content here and playing swearword police is not in our job descriptions. Sailing Anarchy is more like a bar than a classroom, so handle it like you would meeting someone a little coarse - don't look for the teacher. Thanks.
    • B.J. Porter

      Moderation Team Change   06/16/2017

      After fifteen years of volunteer moderation at SA, I will no longer be part of the moderation team. The decision to step aside is mine, and has been some time in the works but we did not wish to announce it in advance for a number of reasons. It's been fun, but I need my time back for other purposes now. The Underdawg admin account will not be monitored until further notice, as I will be relinquishing control of it along with my administrative privileges. Zapata will continue on as a moderator, and any concerns or issues can be directed to that account or to the Editor until further notice. Anyone interested in helping moderate the forums should reach out to Scot by sending a PM to the Editor account. Please note that I am not leaving the community, I am merely stepping aside from Admin responsibilities and privileges on the site.

btbotfa

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  1. ALPHABET SOUP OR HOW I HAVE COME TO APPRECIATE PHRF By Dr. Thompson and R. Steadman esq. Anyone who has had the pleasure to race sailboats has also been subject to a cycle of promise eroding to disappointment or outright disdain for a plethora of rating rules. Those of us having been introduced to yacht racing at a young age sometime last century, have lived through these cycles repeatedly. From The CCA Rule, to The STC Rule, MORC, IOR, IOR MkII. IOR MkIII, IOR MkIIIa, MHS, IMS, IRC, and what now appears likely to be taking center stage, ORC. Pretty much all have started out with the best of intentions, put forth by folks who were committed to a fair and level competitive environment. It is important to note that most of these rules were not solely revolutionary, but rather evolutionary. IOR was born out of The CCA rule in conjunction with The RORC Rule. MHS rapidly became the IMS rule. CHS or Channel Handicap System was revamped and ushered in the IRC Rule. All of these rules have a commonality in that they set out to evaluate the potential performance based on a set of design parameters. By applying these measurements to the formula du jour, we arrive at a number, or, in some cases, several numbers that quantify speed potentials. The goal is to fairly handicap dissimilar designs so that they may compete on equal footing. By no means is this to be viewed unfavorably. For those of us that race sailboats, it is a noble endeavor that there are esteemed sailors who are willing to commit themselves to undertake such ventures. These efforts seek to serve sailors who wish to own differing boats-- boats that have caught their eye, come to admire or outright fallen in love with. The rub or bane of all measurement rules is that when assigning a value to a particular feature or aspect of a given design, how to accurately weigh that value both as a stand alone feature and in conjunction with other design aspects. A perfect example of this for me, in my very early teens, was getting my dad’s boat measured for the IOR. The fellow doing the measuring pointed out to us that the boat’s propeller strut was a bit shy in girth and width. Were we to make a minor modification to the strut, we would realize a .1 favorable gain in rating. Out came the Marinetex. The strut was thickened and extended from approximately a ½” thick to 5/8” and from a girth of around 2 ½” to around 3”. It made zero difference in the speed of the boat except in the eyes of the rule. While the most simplistic of examples, it foretold the future. Rather than designs that exhibited sea kindly or aesthetically pleasing attributes, an era of bumps and bustles, flat bilges, deep forefoots and pinched sterns came to define yacht designs. These elements were not intended to make boats faster, but rather to make them appear slower in terms of measurement. The value or weight of these characteristics having nothing to do with making better boats but rather better ratings relative to performance drawbacks or impediments. Along with how measurement rules would come to dominate the boats we sail, they also served to make designs become quickly obsolete. The upside was that the IOR, being defined as a development rule, served to accelerate yacht design at what seemed breakneck speed. By the late 1970’s, dissatisfaction with the IOR lead to its eventual successors. Two very different rules came to the forefront. One being the Measurement Handicap System Rule or MHS. Unique at the time because rather than measuring a set of given variables of differing designs and applying them to a straight measurement formula to derive a rating in feet, it took this data and applied it to a Velocity Prediction Program or VPP. The VPP used was one developed for large ships and a great deal of work went into modifying this to be applicable to sailboats. Without getting terribly bogged down here, the idea was to base ratings and thus results on the given conditions experienced on the race course. It relied on the competitors to supply wind speed and angle for each leg sailed. Those numbers allowed the race committee to select the appropriate predicted velocity based on the polars generated for each yacht. On paper it looked to answer everything wrong with the measurement rules that preceded it. The winner would be decided on which boat(s) sailed closest to their potential for a given course and conditions experienced. In practice it was beyond cumbersome. If memory serves, Storm Trysail Club used the rule for Block Island Race Week in 1979. Results were slow to be calculated and starting racing the next day without knowing who had won the day before was commonplace. MHS was short lived in its inaugural incarnation. It was quickly replaced by IMS which was essentially the same VPP but the process of arriving at a boat’s rating had been streamlined to make it more workable, more universally applicable. At around the same time another completely different way to assess boats was hatched. The concept was simple in that rather than a measurement rule of ever increasing complexity, it set out to rate boats based on empirical data. Performance potentials were to be based on observation and prior standings of any given design relative to another. In order for this scheme to work, there would need to be a subjective element to the rule as not all boats are prepared, equipped or sailed equally. A meeting was convened by The YRALIS in late 1978 or early 1979, if I recall correctly, to bring this new rule before the membership. My father was in attendance and sat next to his close friend Don King. Mr. King, a long-standing member of Larchmont Yacht Club and Storm Trysail Club said to my dad as the membership voted to accept this new rating rule, “They know not what they have done.” To this day, my father relaying me that story still resonates. Alas, Performance Handicap Racing Fleet, or PHRF, came into being on Long Island Sound and has proliferated throughout the United States in every major sailing region. So starts the era of PHRF. A rule vastly different than those that preceded it. Born out of a desire not to have our boats rapidly become obsolete in terms of competitive sailing. The essence of the rule being that as measurement rules matured and became better understood by designers, that they could be manipulated to gain a competitive advantage. That the rule would dictate the boats we sail rather than the boats we sail dictating how the rule would function. This is by far the most important distinction or attribute of PHRF. When a boat is deemed to have an unfair advantage or disadvantage, it does not require an exploratory committee to be convened, the peculiarities of the rule to be examined, explored and a fix to be developed. Instead, like-minded sailors can simply submit information and supporting documentation to their local PHRF committee and an adjustment can be considered and if warranted, implemented. Some argue that that is the exact problem with PHRF. The subjective nature of the rule allows for politicking that results in rating inequities. They view the strength of PHRF to be a flaw. Personally, I think this is wrong-headed for one very good reason: PHRF relies on the competitors input to work. Void of that, it is certainly prone to misapplications. It is important to note that our sport, the sport of yacht racing, is founded on the principle of self-enforcement by and for those that race. Just as the competitors are charged with enforcing The Racing Rules of Sailing, so are we charged with ensuring that our ratings are just and equally applied. Equally important is to understand who is PHRF? It is all of us who elect to sail under the rule. It is not some obscure committee that none of us know and have little access to. PHRF is the guy sailing right next to you. Be it a fellow competitor, our crew or the PHRF committee member who is out there sailing in the same venues. Because of this very construct, PHRF is highly accessible to all to offer their input. With that accessibility comes responsibility. All too often we chat amongst ourselves about rating inequities, misapplied credits or boats modified or sailing outside the boundaries of their rating certificates. These conversations are very important to the health of our sport but are little more than cocktail talk if we do not act by expressing our concerns to the local PHRF authorities. Perceived flaws within the PHRF rule are not actually institutionally based. They are of our own doing by not taking those concerns expressed in the tent or at the bar and translated and communicated to your local PHRF authority. Yes there are flaws in this rating system. To acknowledge that and to work to remediate these concerns is essential to “fixing” PHRF and thus serving to make it more equitable to a wider range of boats. Rather than wander off into the woods trying to address every complaint ever lodged regarding PHRF, we are better served to identify and discuss some fundamental causes that are at the heart or core of a multitude of concerns. By identifying the ancillary aspects that contribute to the majority of those issues, we can consolidate actions to be tabled and if warranted, undertaken to have the broadest impact to correct a host of issues. The number one complaint sailors express when talking about PHRF on a macro level would be a scaling issue. How many times have you heard or said, “PHRF is good at rating boats in a narrow band but not so good when rating faster boats against slower ones.”? This indicates that the difference between boats that rate 0 and boats that rate 99 is too small. If you added 30 seconds per mile, for example, to a 99 rater, the spread in the ratings would be fairer, more equitable. This may not be wholly linear as adding 15 seconds to a 48 rater may or may not serve to correct this scaling issue. One would have to look over a wide range of results to determine what sort of correction should be applied for different rating bands. It is also important to note that the longer the race, the harder it is to see this effect due to varying conditions, spreading of fleets, progression of weather patterns. What demonstrates this best is short course races. When sailing the same course configuration on something like a 5 mile course, it is not uncharacteristic to see the 40 plus footer rating 0 beat a 35 footer rating in the 80s by a minute or more. Since conditions on such a short course are more static, this would suggest or demonstrate that this is a real concern. Fixing the scaling issue would be a very worthy yet monumental task in making our competition fairer overall in bigger fleets with a wide rating spread. The second most commonly voiced concern would be, “It just wasn’t our conditions”. Little doubt to anyone that any single number rating system allows for the race to be decided based on ‘horses for courses’. Some would argue that this isn’t really a concern-- over the course of a season, that it all comes out in the wash and the better-sailed boats end up with a better cumulative result. There is no denying that to be true. At the same time, is it fair that a boat that sails better in a given set of conditions, outside of the conditions the ratings are based on, should come out on top? Couple that with trying to rate dissimilar boats designed over a span of time to differing measurement rules and it becomes clear that a single number system has its drawbacks. In reading the other day about Offshore Racing Association’s Triple Number Plus rating system, my eyes glazed over. While I understand and, in principle, agree that there is great utility in such a system, the administration seems unruly. That said, I think they are onto something. For racing on Long Island Sound, we already have a dual number system. One rating for windward leeward courses and another for distance racing. I am not sure you could ever effectively use a multi-tiered rating for distance racing. The conditions are rarely one set of conditions versus another. While they may tend to one end of the scale or the other, the application of a dual rating system would prove impractical. However, for short course and W/L racing you could easily employ a dual number system and in turn ensure more competitive racing with fairer results. Such a system would allow for sportboats that can plane when the breeze gets up to actually race against older displacement boats. Of course the devil is in the details and determining what the cutoff would be and how to arrive at a high and low wind rating makes a great deal of work. That said, the reality is all the data already exists by looking to other PHRF areas/regions and seeing what boats rate there based on predominate conditions. This brings us to the third thing that needs to be addressed regarding PHRF. Much has been discussed about ratings not being consistent from one PHRF region to another. Partly this is due to differing conditions and partly to how the rule is managed or administered by a wide variety of Regional PHRF Authorities. While this may on the surface matter little to most sailors, there are several drawbacks for those that travel to other areas to compete. Further, it inhibits the ability of one PHRF committee to draw from the experience of other regions that may have a deeper database for a given design that could be used to determine a local boat’s potentials. We would be well served to see PHRF officially nationalized. At the same time, this should not be done at the expense of losing local autonomy. Rather than seeing the nationalization of PHRF under the umbrella of an existing national authority, the regional PHRF boards should come together and form a cooperative with the purpose of fully sharing information and standardizing the criteria of how ratings are arrived at. It would also allow for the consolidation of a variety of databases. From such a database, it would not be particularly hard to decipher how boats of similar design perform in a range of conditions. This could have tremendous application in developing a multi-tier rating system and while those in San Francisco might view the cutoff for light vs heavy conditions/rating to be 16-18 knots, WLIS may well peg that at closer to say 13-15 knots of breeze. In any event, all the numbers to support such breaks would be compiled in that national database. In closing, no other rule can do what PHRF has done. To survive as long as it has, is a testament to its strength as a rating system. It is highly adaptable with the ability to correct itself through the input of those who sail under the rule. The key to the rule, and to its longevity, is those who serve to make it work. It is dependent on you,the sailor. So next time you are in the tent, at the bar or awaiting a postponement, make it a point to do something more than just talk amongst your crew and fellow competitors. Write that e-mail, commit to volunteering on the PHRF Committee, have your say and do something positive to better our sport. “They know not what they have done” indeed!
  2. It's the same three or four voices out of 1000 members throwing sand in their sandbox-same voices for all the years here on SA and same little backwater bay been shit-stirring for decades. Once mildly amusing but now perceived by most as being out of touch and nattering nabobs of negativism. They are only happy when they are fighting and miserable and concocting deep theories of conspiracy and subterfuge. Can't see the forest for their stunted trees. Personal vendettas and past perceived slights color every perception. Hell of a way to enjoy something that is supposed to ultimately be a fun hobby with family and friends. Unfortunate that the majority of folks who sail and race in LIS are lumped into this perceived morass but the world according to the posters on SA isn't reality, ya know. It's all tiresome and tedious and takes away from the enjoyment of the sport for those of us who actually try and improve things-nuff said. See ya SA. Mic drop.
  3. Not sure why there is this gross misconception that the YRALIS PHRF Committee members are non-racers-a few folks on here seem to think that their little bay or harbor is the cynosure of Long Island Sound racing-I beg to differ-the purview of the YRALIS extends from New York Harbor, part way up the Hudson and all the way up to the Black Rock area in CT and out to Mt. Sinai on Long Island- a large amount of water with over 60 clubs all vying for participants on their respective courses. Just because you don't see some of the Committee members on a scratch sheet in your neighborhood doesn't mean they ain't out there. Let's walk through it: The Chair, Rick Royce, Naval architect at Webb Institute and recent honoree as a new Fellow of the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers, has campaigned his own Tripp 33 for years and is now a regular helmsman on various Hunt Lawrence financed rocketships. The Kendricks, Bob and June, though they dialed back a bit in recent years other than local Lloyd Harbor events, have re-upped in a big way with their recent purchase of a J44. The sailmakers on the committee, Tom C and Mark P are out there all the time on customer boats, obviously, and not only are sailing on local waters, but all over the country and beyond so have a good perspective on how different wave and wind conditions from typical LIS weather effect respective boats' performance possibilities. Charlie Powers is out there all the time as tactician on another J44 Resolute, as well as being a mainstay of the Pied Piper program. Andrew Weiss is prbly one of the last of the active big boat campaigners in these waters with his long-standing Christopher Dragon program-what regatta is he not sailing in? Rick Sinclair is a regular at all events emanating from the Indian Harbor area and has been on these local waters for decades in various capacities, including his time in the marine industry. Rich Gold, once a regular campaigner of his own boat, has now stepped back a bit but is a vital part of the Cedar Point Racing scene and knows all of the players in that area. George Samalot basically built the entire database of the PHRF ratings and though we don't see him much on Long Island Sound, he is still mucking about up there on the Hudson and has a keen eye on how boats are sailed up there and a voluminous memory for boats and their performance levels over the years. Matt Berger used to be a vital part of the 105 fleet and perhaps has lost touch with what happens out there as he isn't very active any more-will give you that one. Iris Vogel probably races more than anyone commenting on this forum or just about anywhere else on this site. How many race days did Devo do last year? KWRW, Charleston, AYC etc. etc. etc. I think Bill's Sock Puppet said 90?? And that probably didn't include weeknight or club stuff. As far as John E. becoming a member of the committee again or his partner at the EBYRA, Vince N., all involved at the committee level appreciate the desire to help the cause but I think the past history , repeated rinsing of dirty laundry on forums such as this,(though most involved don't read what goes on here, and I find it less and less interesting as a whole) and continued expressed ire and insults relayed through various channels kind of negates the positive sentiment of volunteering. Unfortunate, really, as I think both guys bring a wealth of knowledge but sometimes the method of delivering their message obscures the intent, to support and build the sport.
  4. been on the front page since sunday...... expo, do you neede compurter helpe? they should be under the phrf committee meeting minutes heading but due to their late posting, figured front and center on the first page
  5. been on the front page since sunday......
  6. fixte Thanks Snag, works for me! and PHRF committee chair apologizes, his fault in not forwarding minutes from Oct. and Nov. meetings-secretary out on Friday so will get them up tmw--the committee have been on recess since then-kind of like congress taking a long vacation!!! -first meeting of the new year this Thursday evening at Larchmont-8 oclock.
  7. Just watched the Dan Rather Big Interview last night with Greg....who, remarkably, got sober and clean twenty years ago and is in great shape. Seminal American band-Watkins Glen, Allmans, Band, Dead,,,,possibly music Nirvana, but there were too many damn people to really enjoy it!
  8. Ok, it was 2 min job to add toggle: https://gis.ee/vg/navionics.php?boat=3 There is now 'navionics' toggle next to: wind waves pressure... buttons that is pretty brilliant-thanks for making this great race even greater
  9. Harrowing and horrible.....
  10. Snag, you could be the YRA financial advisor but only if u have worked at Goldman Sachs
  11. Well we shall have to work a little harder then. What we seek is tears and begs for mercy sir! Seppuku or any other form of ritual suicide shall not absolve. Oddly many see the pinnacle of that pyramid to be at the other end of the spectrum. Power to the People! While we have your attention Mr. President. Have been following the US Sailing PHRF Appeals thread. Very entertaining BTW, which would be greatly enhanced were those in the know to chime in. The rank and file deserve to hear from our leadership!! Now bearing that in mind can you please confirm that the rumor being floated that the accused, as identified by The Great Spandexpo, was offered not to be "subjected" to a rule 69 in return for accepting the assigned rating with no required admission of guilt? And as a follow-up question, is that truly in the best interest of the sport or a matter of expediency? I'll just sit on the rail and enjoy a diet coke while awaiting your well crafted responses. Lol, that is some convoluted something there, not sure I follow the who was subject to what rule when, but bottom line, it all started in the swamps of EBYRA and one can only hope that it slinks back into the muck and disappears. Looking forward to taking applications for the new Rule 92 Technical Committee. Working on the uniform design now. Tasers will be issued.
  12. balls entertainingly busted-it is those at the top of the pyramid that get to climb over the broken bodies of the downtrodden and oppressed. #maketheSoundgreatagain
  13. That's a great idea Crush. Like an end of season Edlu. Talk to your pals over there at MBYC.
  14. Strange interpretation of the process-self-policing sport-competitors are to protest, or choose not to protest,each other if they see an infraction of rules, any rules, on the race course-it then goes to the protest committee of the respective event-and moves up the ladder from there through an appeals process. You still have some wacky vision of a PHRF police force out there on the course patrolling in whalers handing out red cards and tickets. Not the way this sport works. And this was spurred by the beginning of the Fall sailing season and an observed slackening of folks paying attention to the rules....just a reminder to all what this is supposed to be about.