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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.
Editor

that time of the month

110 posts in this topic

phrf-monthly.jpg


We know that you know just how much we loathe PHRF. We also know that almost all of you who sail it hate it too. We love this idea but need article headlines like "How to get even on a better sailor: Join the handicap board!" Or, "Know that you suck? Just whine about your rating!" Jump in here with yours!

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I think if pros would weigh in more it is actually a decent system. I always laugh at how many people complain but then they do not volunteer. BTW PHRF SoCal is going to need a new Chief Handicapper starting June Scot.

 

I have always thought that PHRF should have several baseline boats such as the Farr 40, Olson 30 and J-24 to base all ratings off of.

 

SCOT FOR PHRF CHIEF HANDICAPPER!!!!!

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Looks like Madmax pretty well nails it - easy to bitch about it, tough to do something about it. One problem - like a divorce lawyer the only just settlement is one where nobody is happy. If you do your job right you suck.

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I've often thought that in addition each boat's race result there should be a listing of what that boat's rating would've had to have been in order to tie for first place in that particular race. It would both eliminate a lot of griping and also offer some empirical evidence of an improper rating.

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Madmax has the right idea with standard baseline boats and adjustments made from there.

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im flattered, but where are the smart ass comments? jesus, save the sober shit for elsewhere.

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"Winning in PHRF - How To Choose the Right Boat Broker"

 

and

 

"Making Your Boat Slower by Making it Faster - Sailmakers Explain Asymmetrical Mathematics"

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Lol. That photo is of a local pnw race called Round Bowen Island. One of the past winners is a boat called Mad Max, davidson 40, With a controversial phrf rating.

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"Do's and Don'ts of Yacht Racing"

Featuring Tips on;

 

"How to Buy the Best Boat for your local area"

"How to get a Survey Done"

"Learn How to Sail your Boat to its Potential"

"Best places to get your boat repaired"

"Proper knot tying"

"How to raise and lower your mast on your own"

"Best places to finds new mast"

"What wrong with my Boat speed"

"How to Lodge Complaint about my Rating"

"Best Websites to Complain about my Rating System"

"Best Website to sell Racing Sailboats"

"College Tuition and Racing- Are they compatible"?

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Gramps said this is how the PHRF'er board gets ratings

 

 

wp-content-uploads-2013-01-stock-investi

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im flattered, but where are the smart ass comments? jesus, save the sober shit for elsewhere.

 

The meeting you were at I actually brought along a "Magic 8 Ball" but did not feel the need to use it.

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Rickfast has it. But then the moaners would find something else. It's never their fault !

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Lol. That photo is of a local pnw race called Round Bowen Island. One of the past winners is a boat called Mad Max, davidson 40, With a controversial phrf rating.

Looks more like SOAR to me. But who is counting.

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"Phrf- How to steer your way through an appeal hearing, skew facts and create reality."

 

"Phrf Handicaps - Why results don't matter but connections do "

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This is a great way to grow the sport. Trash on the main outlet that allows the average person to race a sailboat. Yes PHRF needs to be improved but all this site does is shit on it. With the "power of SA" why not work to help the sport, rather than just shit on it.

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FU Editor! PHRF saved the world from IOR when it wanted to be saved. Now, 30 years later, you ask any rating rule to equilibrate a Melges 32 with a Pearson 30 and you'll get the same result: Failure: In 1980, almost every race boag enerated a surfable wake with 25 knots breeze downwind. Now, a Melges 32 sails nearly 25 knots in 25 knots, while the Pearson 30 surfs to 7 knots, able to tow a wake boarder behind it.

 

Let's stop eating our own and face the music. PHRF is the worst handicap sysytem out there, except for all the rest. Make racing fun again: Ban windward leeward racing for one year, start races at 1pm and stop at 4:30. Make post-race parties Great Again! Penalize carbon sails and give credit for Dacron. Give rating credits for family crews. Subsidize FUN, penalize winning is everything. Respect the Tradition of cruiser racers. Promote destination races with post race raft ups and sleeping aboard. Introudce yourself to you fellow competitors...for the first time. Ditch the Opti and promote crewed junior sailing so crewing becomes Great again. Over and out

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This is a great way to grow the sport. Trash on the main outlet that allows the average person to race a sailboat. Yes PHRF needs to be improved but all this site does is shit on it. With the "power of SA" why not work to help the sport, rather than just shit on it.

Lighten up, Francis.

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FU Editor! PHRF saved the world from IOR when it wanted to be saved. Now, 30 years later, you ask any rating rule to equilibrate a Melges 32 with a Pearson 30 and you'll get the same result: Failure: In 1980, almost every race boag enerated a surfable wake with 25 knots breeze downwind. Now, a Melges 32 sails nearly 25 knots in 25 knots, while the Pearson 30 surfs to 7 knots, able to tow a wake boarder behind it.

 

Let's stop eating our own and face the music. PHRF is the worst handicap sysytem out there, except for all the rest. Make racing fun again: Ban windward leeward racing for one year, start races at 1pm and stop at 4:30. Make post-race parties Great Again! Penalize carbon sails and give credit for Dacron. Give rating credits for family crews. Subsidize FUN, penalize winning is everything. Respect the Tradition of cruiser racers. Promote destination races with post race raft ups and sleeping aboard. Introudce yourself to you fellow competitors...for the first time. Ditch the Opti and promote crewed junior sailing so crewing becomes Great again. Over and out

All of the above +1

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Anyone that races PHRF and has a modern boat, particularly a sportboat, or is an advanced sailor, needs to be questioning what they are doing. The rule is not designed for the top end. It is designed for the bottom end.

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We need to KILL PHRF NOW!

I suggest all fleets cancel PHRF starts. Maybe one out of 20 will buy a dinghy or OD sporty and the rest will quit racing forever. This will be exactly what is needed to clear our over crowded courses of the hundreds of "hobby racers" that get in the way of the cool people and the pros.

As a bonus feature, think of all the clubs with nothing but PHRF fleets that will die or become waterfront bars or something. God knows we don't need THEM around whinging and complaining about things.

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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!

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The biggest problem with PHRF is not mis-rated boats, but the use of time on distance rather than time on time.

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"penalty turns and why you shouldn't bother"

 

Ok, that was funny.

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Lol. That photo is of a local pnw race called Round Bowen Island. One of the past winners is a boat called Mad Max, davidson 40, With a controversial phrf rating.

Looks more like SOAR to me. But who is counting.

 

FFS

Winner!

 

It is SOAR, must be shot from a drone, you would have to climb the cliffs to get that pic otherwise.

 

Second boat to the right side is Halipeno, our local Martin 242...The Squamish Yacht Club

 

They didn't even get the Chief in the photo....

longexposure-iso100-abroad-squamish.jpg

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Sailboat Ratings - The Ultimate First World Problem

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Haploid - forest for the trees much.

 

Great read btbotfa.

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"Every horse has its day" comes to mind and so does

 

"If it normally lives on a trailer, has less than 2 feet of freeboard and the only reason you go below EVER is to get a tool, has ZERO wood trim, it belongs in its own class with others similar" The trailer boat class

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Lol. That photo is of a local pnw race called Round Bowen Island. One of the past winners is a boat called Mad Max, davidson 40, With a controversial phrf rating.

Looks more like SOAR to me. But who is counting.

100% RBI. Melges and Martin's are rarely in same place at same time.

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"Every horse has its day" comes to mind and so does

 

"If it normally lives on a trailer, has less than 2 feet of freeboard and the only reason you go below EVER is to get a tool, has ZERO wood trim, it belongs in its own class with others similar" The trailer boat class

Well some days are light and the newer lighter boats do better with their carbon everything and then some days the wind is blowing dogs off chains and chains off doghouses and doghouses are flying past. The old boat skippers smile in anticipation at their old boats for once being in the lead while the newer ones take a beating or are scared to leave the dock. Life is good and every boat gets their day.......wait...what is this.......racing is canceled today. Too windy :rolleyes::angry:

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This is a great way to grow the sport. Trash on the main outlet that allows the average person to race a sailboat. Yes PHRF needs to be improved but all this site does is shit on it. With the "power of SA" why not work to help the sport, rather than just shit on it.

SA became SA by trashing things. It chums on the home page and let's the sharks in the forum do the damage. Growing the sport thru SA isn't going to happen.

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I really did enjoy the magazine cover on the front page.

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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!

 

 

 

.......what -he- said. :mellow::)

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PHRF to do list

 

Be the scratch boat or near the scratch boat in your fleet. Being 30 seconds a mile slower than scratch is a fools journey in dirty air. How many seconds a mile does that cost?

Better yet buy a boat that is one of the longer and slower ones from the next fleet up and dumb it down till it makes the cut for your fleet. Waterline baby

Exploit everything Grey is the new orange

Get a great tactician/sailmaker to point the damn thing in the right direction. Getting one involves buying lots of sails and that dont hurt

 

Enjoy your pickle dish and empty wallet you deserve it

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S/V, with only minor modifications you could say the same thing about any single OD fleet.

 

Hell it can be even worse, in some OD fleets their version of buy the scratch boat is buy the new boat.

Exploit everything -> like going off and changing your forestay length between races, swapping out bulkheads, or dropping in a new rudder? At least when people do that in handicap fleets, it's usually just ratings wankery and not outright cheating.

Get a great tactician -> that's some sage like advice, How has no one in the OD world figured that out yet? It's gonna be a revolution. Foiling x 1000.

 

Of all the many reasons to knock PHRF, cost is pretty damned low on the scale.

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S/V, with only minor modifications you could say the same thing about any single OD fleet.

 

Hell it can be even worse, in some OD fleets their version of buy the scratch boat is buy the new boat.

Exploit everything -> like going off and changing your forestay length between races, swapping out bulkheads, or dropping in a new rudder? At least when people do that in handicap fleets, it's usually just ratings wankery and not outright cheating.

Get a great tactician -> that's some sage like advice, How has no one in the OD world figured that out yet? It's gonna be a revolution. Foiling x 1000.

 

Of all the many reasons to knock PHRF, cost is pretty damned low on the scale.

I was just making a joke. I sail in some damn wide rating bands which frankly is the major cause of the my rating is fucked and his is a gift rant. Hard to fix that. Of course PHRF is always going to be horses for courses but its the biggest problem i see. Then you have the crap boats with dirty bottoms and old ass sails bitchery but hey we need the participation so break out the golf handicaps. Give me a break

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I like SSN's thought. If you are a top level racer, WTF are you doing in PHRF?

 

PHRF serves a great purpose, it gets more adults into sailboat racing than ANY other avenue.

 

If you think that's a bad thing then I got nothing for you.

 

I race a mix of OD and PHRF I'm sailing a boat with my friends. It ain't all bad...

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I like SSN's thought. If you are a top level racer, WTF are you doing in PHRF?

 

PHRF serves a great purpose, it gets more adults into sailboat racing than ANY other avenue.

 

If you think that's a bad thing then I got nothing for you.

 

I race a mix of OD and PHRF I'm sailing a boat with my friends. It ain't all bad...

I do both on several programs it is what it is but the bottom line is money. Whether its dough for the traveling to stay up in OD racing or in some instances its directly related to how much time the crew can get off from work. Its a balancing act for most programs and the crew.

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PHRF to do list

 

Be the scratch boat or near the scratch boat in your fleet. Being 30 seconds a mile slower than scratch is a fools journey in dirty air. How many seconds a mile does that cost?

Better yet buy a boat that is one of the longer and slower ones from the next fleet up and dumb it down till it makes the cut for your fleet. Waterline baby

Exploit everything Grey is the new orange

Get a great tactician/sailmaker to point the damn thing in the right direction. Getting one involves buying lots of sails and that dont hurt

 

Enjoy your pickle dish and empty wallet you deserve it

 

In the NW most of our races are reverse start now. So scratch means passing the slower boats anyway.

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Scott - If PHRF was banned forever this Sunday, what do YOU think the results would be?

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Everyone should just get a participation award, no need for ratings or know who placed where. Works great for kids, why not yacht racing? We're all special, talented, gifted and the best at everything, just ask your mom and dad.

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Not this shit again! I appreciate that tome of treatise about PHRF, IRC, IMS, IOR.....blah, blah.......blah.To the point of making my brain hurt. I didn't know what PHRF was when I started to race 4 knotsb's when the earth was still cooling. There was only IOR for me in those days. But I always thought PHRF was for low key club racing never meant to be anything but. Then people get competitive with their 4 knotsb's and there is a sort of a bar set by certain well known designs it everyone recognizes. Wasn't it the Thunderbird one of this as bench mark? But with random, picking a rating out of hat system sometimes. Then you get the: "It can't be me - it's the rating!" Well buddy - it is you! Sorry about that. They squawk, piss & moan or burn the handicapper's house down to get their way. At that level it's a phuqing hobby at best okay? One well know sailing administrator and former medalist said in a sailing meeting: "What do you expect for a $35 a year (at that time) rating system?" I sort chortled under my breath he being so cheeky. The I thought - wait a second; he's right!

 

That said: That type of system can only work if people are playing the game right. Particularly sail measurements and changes of the boat/rig etc that "should" be declared. There is a certain of mis-knowledge of the rules which is fair enough to blatant cheating that I have seen. But some are reluctant to protest a rating or changes to a boat not on the the rating certificate record. It's easy to do and administrators are often volunteers and not happy to have call someone down in that situation. Again, they are volunteers and who wants the stress.

 

In specific instance a guy had added 12 to 18 inches to the transom to scoop it. Added a number of inches of his boom - with the main to match. Oversize No.1 genoa by lots. And a oversized spinnaker too boot. Not declared for any of it. When racing with that club's handicapper I asked him what's the deal with this guy with the changes? A little new to be handicapper he said I'll check it out as that had been going on for years. And winning again & again when he wasn't that good. Same guy that thrown out of racing by boarding another competitors boat at contentious mark rounding by punching him in the face many years ago. It took awhile and the guy has been a belligerent prick anyway. My friend did the remeasurement process but the guy was still being belligerent to the point they had to get another handicapper saying it doesn't make any difference for speed etc. And guess what? After re-rating the boat for the real numbers he lost his trophies and ended up as fourth placings, or worse, as it should be.

 

And Irish - I know all about that boat as I raced against it. And raced on it and against it with the previous owner with in the one ton LIOR fleet in the late 80's/early 90's. It never went that quick. We did a Straits race with very light air. We were leading our fleet going around Halibut Bank and that black boat came up on the horizon and all of us were in the same situation. Damn passed them door handle to door handle. I remarked at the time that that boat never went that fast before - ever in those conditions. A little pressure for us we finally sailed away. Still situation like that again that made go.......hmmm. The rating for the boat for PHRF has changed since it was rated so another.......hmmm. I have my own theories about this as to why but not here. IM me Irish if you are interested of my thoughts.

 

Again - PHRF is what it is. And it works okay for Bodunk Yacht club racing but would never say it is premium racing. If it's prone to cheating it won't work at all.

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Everyone should just get a participation award, no need for ratings or know who placed where. Works great for kids, why not yacht racing? We're all special, talented, gifted and the best at everything, just ask your mom and dad.

And we all get ice cream! Yay.

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Scott - If PHRF was banned forever this Sunday, what do YOU think the results would be?

 

 

dats simple

people would spend a few xtra scrilla n get a real rating from a legit organization

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Lol. That photo is of a local pnw race called Round Bowen Island. One of the past winners is a boat called Mad Max, davidson 40, With a controversial phrf rating.

Looks more like SOAR to me. But who is counting.

100% RBI. Melges and Martin's are rarely in same place at same time.

 

Want to talk about something really important??!!.....let's talk about using a photo without credit or payment. Scot please PM me.

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Everyone should just get a participation award, no need for ratings or know who placed where. Works great for kids, why not yacht racing? We're all special, talented, gifted and the best at everything, just ask your mom and dad.

There is something about this. We usually race OD which can get intense at times. Yet every Thursday night (during our short sailing season), our club hosts a beer can race... Everyone invited, two starts, non spinny, then spinny, everybody who finishes gets a whistle (horn), no times or scores are kept.

 

It's a blast. Everybody knows who they want to beat. It's boat on boat, and it's fun. Kind of like a grudge match that doesn't count, with a social hour afterwards and a BBQ every other week or so.

 

Newcomers, including myself when I first joined the club, are sceptical. Why not score the race? But not scoring is the beauty. Participation keeps growing, and so has participation in our series race, because of it (IMHO). It's good fun.

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THE SECRET RATINGS WAR

What the NSA is doing with your PHRF data!

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WHY HIS PHRF NUMBERS MATTER

Dr. Phil talks to Cosmopolitan about how to avert low self esteem in your man

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THE WOLF OF WEDNESDAY NIGHT

How Jordan Belfont manipulated PHRF for a decade, defrauding millions of middle class owners from their hard earned pickle dishes.

( soon to be made into a movie directed by Martin Scorese, starring Leonardo Di Caprio and Scot Tempests)

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Perennially Hysterical Rating Fiasco.

 

 

If yer not winning yer whining

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All kidding and satire aside, the way PHRF is administered in this country has IMO contributed to the general decline in sailing. PHRF fans point to weeknight beer can racing as a barometer of their success and while I give them credit, what I see are relatively few boats packed with a boat owner and a lot of non-boat owners who only really do weeknight beer can racing and some take it the point where they actually believe they are WORLD CLASS sailors. Look at how the sailing industry has declined in this country because no one is really buying boats and I believe PHRF feeds that beast. At our clubs on the gulf coast, new sailors are typically pointed to the POS club boats that are in poor shape or pointed to the PHRF crowd to become rail meat. I'm on the Gulf Coast and OD sailing is pretty much dead. They recently voted in the Viper 640 as the GYA interclub boat but most clubs will only have one boat with something like 10-20 sailors that want to sail it, Not really a OD class building scenario.

 

I don't see things getting better unless you can somehow get OD sailing growing again in popularity and people willing to invest in a boat to have skin in the game. I've done plenty of work as a district chairman and a class president in two OD classes. I'm close to 60 years old and more ready to go cruising for a while. I hope the situation improves.

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The thing that bugs me the most about PHRF is people bitching and whining about their rating and how it's "too punitive" when they're ignoring the #1 tenant of PHRF: that you're sailing its boat to its potential. I'll illustrate this in a few vignettes.

 

Crew Work: One blown tack on a beat can equate to 3 seconds of difference, no question. A slow drop or poor trimming around a bottom mark can mean another 6 seconds. The trimmer letting the kite collapse in the gybe is another couple seconds. These don't result in the boat just stopping for all that time, but examine the counterfactual of a boat that was able to accelerate quicker, carve a better line around the gate, or keep their kite full through the gybe and maybe escape a wind shadow because of it and you'll see that boat winds up much further ahead and this has nothing to do with boat performance, rating, or the handicap board.

 

Mast Setup: This is where PHRF racers can lean a lot from OD sailors. Show up to any small keelboat or dinghy OD event and look at what those sailors are doing with their boat. They're adjusting their shrouds, mast butt, and forestay in between every race - or they've developed ways to change the rig shape during the race with aggressive fracalating or similar tricks. Those sailors live by their tuning guides and are constantly refining them for every wind and wave condition. Now back to PHRF. We all know a boat that puts their boat in the water in May and puts the rig in and tunes it to the 8-12 knot "base" that their sailmaker gave them 5 years ago then leaves it there. From there, they don't add turns when it gets windy and they don't take them off when it's super light. A bad tack or old sails pales in "badness" comparison to sailing a beat in 20 knots with your rig tuned for 12.

 

Weight: Not crew weight - (sidebar: crew weight shouldn't be given a credit or limit as it's hurting participation). But I mean "stuff." And not just how much "stuff" but where that stuff is. I can't tell you how many people in my local fleet sail around with sails in the bow, anchors in the cockpit lazarettes, a full library of piloting books above the port settee, a mechanics grade tool kit under the starboard quarterberth, and a full duffelbag for every crew member sliding around on the cockpit sole between every tack. Not only does this weight contribute to overall "slowness" by hurting your acceleration and top end speed, but it also causes the boat to pitch and roll much more violently. With every wave, every move of the helm, the weight of the equipment and gear in the ends of the boat experiences a gravity of its own and that gravity is fighting the gravity of the boat as it's trying to stabilize itself. A boat traveling straight and level is a boat going faster.

 

Tactics: Too many people equate this with "how well can you muscle in at a start and fuck the people around you" or "how you can get away with skirting the rules at mark roundings." I've sailed with enough Olympians to know that there are people out there who just read the course better. They can pick a side of the course well, spot puffs well, and call the favored end of a start line to within a degree. These are skills that should be studied and refined over time, and are the most valuable aspect of the pre-race period.

 

-------

 

This diatribe is not meant to serve as a browbeating for every PHRF racer out there. Bob and Jane shouldn't feel the need to fuck with their forestay to and from the racecourse on Wednesday night. To the same end, Bob and Jane should recognize that the boat winning every week because they sail the boat well, leave their duffel bags on the dock, and put the time in for practice and preparation is winning because they're sailing to what the rating rule assumes, not because the rating on Bob and Jane's Islander 41 is wrong.

 

Furthermore, with practice, crew debriefs, and hard work, everything I've mentioned above can improve the performance of any PHRF boat without costing the owner a cent. And if I were on a PHRF board, I would take the "evidence" an owner brings me that his rating is wrong (mostly race results, and maybe boat specs) and put it on the table before asking to see his tuning guide for various windspeeds. 90% of the time this will illicit a blank response or stammering. My followup will be that if he comes back in a year after adjusting his rig for changing conditions and is still having performance problems we can talk about his rating.

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All kidding and satire aside, the way PHRF is administered in this country has IMO contributed to the general decline in sailing. PHRF fans point to weeknight beer can racing as a barometer of their success and while I give them credit, what I see are relatively few boats packed with a boat owner and a lot of non-boat owners who only really do weeknight beer can racing and some take it the point where they actually believe they are WORLD CLASS sailors. Look at how the sailing industry has declined in this country because no one is really buying boats and I believe PHRF feeds that beast. At our clubs on the gulf coast, new sailors are typically pointed to the POS club boats that are in poor shape or pointed to the PHRF crowd to become rail meat. I'm on the Gulf Coast and OD sailing is pretty much dead. They recently voted in the Viper 640 as the GYA interclub boat but most clubs will only have one boat with something like 10-20 sailors that want to sail it, Not really a OD class building scenario.

 

I don't see things getting better unless you can somehow get OD sailing growing again in popularity and people willing to invest in a boat to have skin in the game. I've done plenty of work as a district chairman and a class president in two OD classes. I'm close to 60 years old and more ready to go cruising for a while. I hope the situation improves.

 

Counterpoint:

 

One Design is killing sailing. In pure terms of competitiveness the racing may be "better" but perhaps that's not what the mythical "average sailor" wants. Let's look when yacht racing was at it's peak, the IOR days. The boats were all different and a lot of times kind of bizarre to look at and sail, but shit there were a lot of people out there. The racing was varied and there wasn't this pervasive idea that, "If you're not racing one design, you're not actually racing." I'd wager the vast majority of sailors don't actually want to trailer their boat all over the country at great expense to regattas that are almost indistinguishable from each other.

 

Maybe less people are racing because their sick of assholes with clapped out backmarker J/105s telling them they're doing it wrong.

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Leo-

 

Great post but please consider that many people racing PHRF are racing old boats, with telephone rigs where rigging quick adjustments are not only difficult, but also have little effect.

There's no tuning a Pearson 30 or a Catalina 27. If you're lucky, you'll have a backstay adjuster to take some sag out of the forestay in a heavy breeze but that's it.

 

Everything else was great.

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Leo-

 

Great post but please consider that many people racing PHRF are racing old boats, with telephone rigs where rigging quick adjustments are not only difficult, but also have little effect.

There's no tuning a Pearson 30 or a Catalina 27. If you're lucky, you'll have a backstay adjuster to take some sag out of the forestay in a heavy breeze but that's it.

 

Everything else was great.

Ajax - Sorry but I gotta disagree (this seems to happen a bit too often lately and its not intentional). Raced quite a bit on a friends Alberg 30. You can find these boats both ODing and PHRFing. Tree trunk of a rig if ever there was one. And yes, it was adjusted on the dock before racing based on expected breeze and in-between races for actual breeze. And yea, its makes a difference that is easily noticeable when racing OD and you have other boats to compare to. Wess

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All kidding and satire aside, the way PHRF is administered in this country has IMO contributed to the general decline in sailing. PHRF fans point to weeknight beer can racing as a barometer of their success and while I give them credit, what I see are relatively few boats packed with a boat owner and a lot of non-boat owners who only really do weeknight beer can racing and some take it the point where they actually believe they are WORLD CLASS sailors. Look at how the sailing industry has declined in this country because no one is really buying boats and I believe PHRF feeds that beast. At our clubs on the gulf coast, new sailors are typically pointed to the POS club boats that are in poor shape or pointed to the PHRF crowd to become rail meat. I'm on the Gulf Coast and OD sailing is pretty much dead. They recently voted in the Viper 640 as the GYA interclub boat but most clubs will only have one boat with something like 10-20 sailors that want to sail it, Not really a OD class building scenario.

 

I don't see things getting better unless you can somehow get OD sailing growing again in popularity and people willing to invest in a boat to have skin in the game. I've done plenty of work as a district chairman and a class president in two OD classes. I'm close to 60 years old and more ready to go cruising for a while. I hope the situation improves.

 

Counterpoint:

 

One Design is killing sailing. In pure terms of competitiveness the racing may be "better" but perhaps that's not what the mythical "average sailor" wants. Let's look when yacht racing was at it's peak, the IOR days. The boats were all different and a lot of times kind of bizarre to look at and sail, but shit there were a lot of people out there. The racing was varied and there wasn't this pervasive idea that, "If you're not racing one design, you're not actually racing." I'd wager the vast majority of sailors don't actually want to trailer their boat all over the country at great expense to regattas that are almost indistinguishable from each other.

 

Maybe less people are racing because their sick of assholes with clapped out backmarker J/105s telling them they're doing it wrong.

 

Yea, I just don't know if OD is the answer A-class. OD racing boat design evolved to place where the boats are fun to race but you would not take your family cruising on it. Dual purpose racing cruising boats died and dinghies and beach cats are their own world that really does not translate.

 

I don't understand why but where it was very possible to both race OD and have a fun family boat - things like Alberg 30s, Cal 25s, Catalina 27s, and even multihulls like F27s and then F28s - but all these classes died and people who race moved on to race boats that are not dual purpose. And then families went away.

 

The only place to race your average family cruiser (be it new or used) is PHRF.

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Leo-

 

Great post but please consider that many people racing PHRF are racing old boats, with telephone rigs where rigging quick adjustments are not only difficult, but also have little effect.

There's no tuning a Pearson 30 or a Catalina 27. If you're lucky, you'll have a backstay adjuster to take some sag out of the forestay in a heavy breeze but that's it.

 

Everything else was great.

Ajax - Sorry but I gotta disagree (this seems to happen a bit too often lately and its not intentional). Raced quite a bit on a friends Alberg 30. You can find these boats both ODing and PHRFing. Tree trunk of a rig if ever there was one. And yes, it was adjusted on the dock before racing based on expected breeze and in-between races for actual breeze. And yea, its makes a difference that is easily noticeable when racing OD and you have other boats to compare to. Wess

 

 

I guess I'm just not good enough to perceive and leverage these changes. :)

I did try to adjust my rig for conditions once and it took a shit load of turns to put any bend in the mast and I was put off by the amount of tension it took, so I put it back to the "general purpose" setting and left it. Other, more experienced folk told me that I just wouldn't be able to affect much change.

 

Question: Did your friend have some special hardware or tricks for quick and easy adjustments or were they cranking turnbuckles?

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Off topic for the thread so just PM me if you want more Ajax but depending on what needed adjustment it was turnbuckles or specialized hardware. Can likely get you on his boat if you want to check it out. Nice guy and good sailor.

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Per race or during the race rig tuning of an Alberg 30 is an interesting concept - I bet they would not have done it without a OD fleet. You really do see a difference if the entire fleet is the same kind of boat.

That said, PHRF should also be a friendly place for the boat that has the rig tuned exactly as delivered a year/decade/half century ago, some tools, and a TV, as log as the skipper doesn't think the boat should be winning over prepared boats ;)

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All kidding and satire aside, the way PHRF is administered in this country has IMO contributed to the general decline in sailing. PHRF fans point to weeknight beer can racing as a barometer of their success and while I give them credit, what I see are relatively few boats packed with a boat owner and a lot of non-boat owners who only really do weeknight beer can racing and some take it the point where they actually believe they are WORLD CLASS sailors. Look at how the sailing industry has declined in this country because no one is really buying boats and I believe PHRF feeds that beast. At our clubs on the gulf coast, new sailors are typically pointed to the POS club boats that are in poor shape or pointed to the PHRF crowd to become rail meat. I'm on the Gulf Coast and OD sailing is pretty much dead. They recently voted in the Viper 640 as the GYA interclub boat but most clubs will only have one boat with something like 10-20 sailors that want to sail it, Not really a OD class building scenario.

 

I don't see things getting better unless you can somehow get OD sailing growing again in popularity and people willing to invest in a boat to have skin in the game. I've done plenty of work as a district chairman and a class president in two OD classes. I'm close to 60 years old and more ready to go cruising for a while. I hope the situation improves.

 

Counterpoint:

 

One Design is killing sailing. In pure terms of competitiveness the racing may be "better" but perhaps that's not what the mythical "average sailor" wants. Let's look when yacht racing was at it's peak, the IOR days. The boats were all different and a lot of times kind of bizarre to look at and sail, but shit there were a lot of people out there. The racing was varied and there wasn't this pervasive idea that, "If you're not racing one design, you're not actually racing." I'd wager the vast majority of sailors don't actually want to trailer their boat all over the country at great expense to regattas that are almost indistinguishable from each other.

 

Maybe less people are racing because their sick of assholes with clapped out backmarker J/105s telling them they're doing it wrong.

 

Yea, I just don't know if OD is the answer A-class. OD racing boat design evolved to place where the boats are fun to race but you would not take your family cruising on it. Dual purpose racing cruising boats died and dinghies and beach cats are their own world that really does not translate.

 

I don't understand why but where it was very possible to both race OD and have a fun family boat - things like Alberg 30s, Cal 25s, Catalina 27s, and even multihulls like F27s and then F28s - but all these classes died and people who race moved on to race boats that are not dual purpose. And then families went away.

 

The only place to race your average family cruiser (be it new or used) is PHRF.

 

THIS needs to be pinned on the FP.

Forget about mono-multi-OD-tall ship-whatever, the removal of families has fundamentally altered the nature of racing.

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All kidding and satire aside, the way PHRF is administered in this country has IMO contributed to the general decline in sailing. PHRF fans point to weeknight beer can racing as a barometer of their success and while I give them credit, what I see are relatively few boats packed with a boat owner and a lot of non-boat owners who only really do weeknight beer can racing and some take it the point where they actually believe they are WORLD CLASS sailors. Look at how the sailing industry has declined in this country because no one is really buying boats and I believe PHRF feeds that beast. At our clubs on the gulf coast, new sailors are typically pointed to the POS club boats that are in poor shape or pointed to the PHRF crowd to become rail meat. I'm on the Gulf Coast and OD sailing is pretty much dead. They recently voted in the Viper 640 as the GYA interclub boat but most clubs will only have one boat with something like 10-20 sailors that want to sail it, Not really a OD class building scenario.

 

I don't see things getting better unless you can somehow get OD sailing growing again in popularity and people willing to invest in a boat to have skin in the game. I've done plenty of work as a district chairman and a class president in two OD classes. I'm close to 60 years old and more ready to go cruising for a while. I hope the situation improves.

 

Counterpoint:

 

One Design is killing sailing. In pure terms of competitiveness the racing may be "better" but perhaps that's not what the mythical "average sailor" wants. Let's look when yacht racing was at it's peak, the IOR days. The boats were all different and a lot of times kind of bizarre to look at and sail, but shit there were a lot of people out there. The racing was varied and there wasn't this pervasive idea that, "If you're not racing one design, you're not actually racing." I'd wager the vast majority of sailors don't actually want to trailer their boat all over the country at great expense to regattas that are almost indistinguishable from each other.

 

Maybe less people are racing because their sick of assholes with clapped out backmarker J/105s telling them they're doing it wrong.

 

Yea, I just don't know if OD is the answer A-class. OD racing boat design evolved to place where the boats are fun to race but you would not take your family cruising on it. Dual purpose racing cruising boats died and dinghies and beach cats are their own world that really does not translate.

 

I don't understand why but where it was very possible to both race OD and have a fun family boat - things like Alberg 30s, Cal 25s, Catalina 27s, and even multihulls like F27s and then F28s - but all these classes died and people who race moved on to race boats that are not dual purpose. And then families went away.

 

The only place to race your average family cruiser (be it new or used) is PHRF.

 

THIS needs to be pinned on the FP.

Forget about mono-multi-OD-tall ship-whatever, the removal of families has fundamentally altered the nature of racing.

 

Oh geeze. Sorry been disagreeing with you a lot also (and also not intentional). I was not clear and that's actually not what I meant.

 

I don't think there was ever a lot of families racing in bigger boats. I could be wrong but just don't think that was ever a significant segment (Mom, Dad and the kids doing a big boat regatta OD or otherwise). But the boyz could go race the family cruiser which could be a dual purpose boat that the family could also go cruising in. But now, today you gotta pick one or the other as there is really no OD boat that the family would want to cruise and I would be able to race (in decent size OD class). That is what I am saying I am guessing is limiting the number of folks racing.

 

The only place I ever saw lots of families was in OD dinghies and beach cats.

 

Why big boat racing evolved away from dual purpose boats is something I think impacts racing #s but I just don't understand how and why it happened.

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Wess - you ARE wrong. I grew up racing "big boats". There were always kids and families on the other race boats you would meet up with after a race. It was a very fun way to sail :D Also <cough wink nod> once one got past age 15 or so, the wonderfully non-existent checking of age at the rum table and beer keg did not go unnoticed B)

I actually had almost zero interest in dinghy racing as a kid. Why screw around going back and forth in the harbor when you could be going places and meeting people. Learning the 15th way to move a 420 around the course by sculling was of little interest compared to being navigator on long distance races or a heavy air spinnaker duel. (At age 12 I was king of RDF navigation.)

 

As for how the dual-purpose boat died, I have some guesses.

1. As racing become more serious, wives and kids either didn't want to go out or were no longer welcome.

2. W/L racing likewise chased off people racing for fun, which IMHO W/L is most certainly NOT on a big boat.

3. Serious people bought serious boats and did NOT give a crap about comfort or cruising or if their wives ever even got near the boat.

4. The falling finances of the young killed the segment of people looking for a boat that was a fun family recreational boat as well as possibly a racer.

 

You also may want to check your trolling instincts if you can't even agree with what YOU write :lol:

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Wess - you ARE wrong. I grew up racing "big boats". There were always kids and families on the other race boats you would meet up with after a race. It was a very fun way to sail :D Also <cough wink nod> once one got past age 15 or so, the wonderfully non-existent checking of age at the rum table and beer keg did not go unnoticed B)

I actually had almost zero interest in dinghy racing as a kid. Why screw around going back and forth in the harbor when you could be going places and meeting people. Learning the 15th way to move a 420 around the course by sculling was of little interest compared to being navigator on long distance races or a heavy air spinnaker duel. (At age 12 I was king of RDF navigation.)

 

As for how the dual-purpose boat died, I have some guesses.

1. As racing become more serious, wives and kids either didn't want to go out or were no longer welcome.

2. W/L racing likewise chased off people racing for fun, which IMHO W/L is most certainly NOT on a big boat.

3. Serious people bought serious boats and did NOT give a crap about comfort or cruising or if their wives ever even got near the boat.

4. The falling finances of the young killed the segment of people looking for a boat that was a fun family recreational boat as well as possibly a racer.

 

You also may want to check your trolling instincts if you can't even agree with what YOU write :lol:

What class and what % of boats was crewed by Mom, Pop and the kids?

 

You sure this ain't rose colored glasses, good ole days, grass always greener kinda stuff? Maybe dementia? I mean judging from your posts you are clearly getting older :D

 

And if having schizophrenia, can't I troll myself? :blink:

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Wess - you ARE wrong. I grew up racing "big boats". There were always kids and families on the other race boats you would meet up with after a race. It was a very fun way to sail :D Also <cough wink nod> once one got past age 15 or so, the wonderfully non-existent checking of age at the rum table and beer keg did not go unnoticed B)

I actually had almost zero interest in dinghy racing as a kid. Why screw around going back and forth in the harbor when you could be going places and meeting people. Learning the 15th way to move a 420 around the course by sculling was of little interest compared to being navigator on long distance races or a heavy air spinnaker duel. (At age 12 I was king of RDF navigation.)

 

As for how the dual-purpose boat died, I have some guesses.

1. As racing become more serious, wives and kids either didn't want to go out or were no longer welcome.

2. W/L racing likewise chased off people racing for fun, which IMHO W/L is most certainly NOT on a big boat.

3. Serious people bought serious boats and did NOT give a crap about comfort or cruising or if their wives ever even got near the boat.

4. The falling finances of the young killed the segment of people looking for a boat that was a fun family recreational boat as well as possibly a racer.

 

You also may want to check your trolling instincts if you can't even agree with what YOU write :lol:

 

Last Thursday, I attended an evening seminar with Ken Read and Jeff Johnstone.

 

They both agreed (Ken Read rather strenuously) that W/L racing has encouraged pro's racing stripped out eggshells and chased the families away.

Jeff Johnstone stated that one of the points in the design brief for the J/121 is that it be "family daysail friendly" and a couple of the target demographics are- "Distance/Adventure sailing" and "shorthanded sailing."

 

Both of them stated that the "health" of sailing is strong, and that even racing is strong, which really surprised me. However, they do seem to understand that the strength appears to be at the high end of things and that a substantial segment is being shut out. They are also both concerned about the loss of youth after dinghy sailing. That gap between Optis and college.

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Wess, Multiple Personality Disorder is what allows one to troll oneself. Schizophrenia does not do that. Just FYI

 

In the 1970s I had no interest in nor any way to survey all racing fleets across all parts of the country for level of family participation. I was there though and know what I saw. We even had races that involved total non racers, even powerboats, where we just told them where to start the raft and and we would all finish and join the party. Obviously there were people racing without families back then and there were serious programs too that would not even dream of pick up crew of unknown skills. That was the real high end though back then, not the average racer.

I think one boat in the first Bermuda race I did had an *infant and a puppy* on board!

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Wess, Multiple Personality Disorder is what allows one to troll oneself. Schizophrenia does not do that. Just FYI

 

In the 1970s I had no interest in nor any way to survey all racing fleets across all parts of the country for level of family participation. I was there though and know what I saw. We even had races that involved total non racers, even powerboats, where we just told them where to start the raft and and we would all finish and join the party. Obviously there were people racing without families back then and there were serious programs too that would not even dream of pick up crew of unknown skills. That was the real high end though back then, not the average racer.

I think one boat in the first Bermuda race I did had an *infant and a puppy* on board!

Who is this Wess guy of which you speak and can you really remember the 70s? Because that don't sound like a race. It sounds like a "trip."

 

Maybe more of that trippin stuff that could save sailing, racing and PHRF!? :o

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My boat base on Lake Huron 102. The same boat with epoxy hull (600 lbs lighter) but with shoal draft is 117 on Lake Michigan. That's what not to like about PHRF.

Either I am being screwed or the other boat is "blessed". Wonder what would happen if a raced on Lake Michigan?? Would I go up or he come down. ????

Checked other ratings too, Ben 40.7 PHRF for example on LM and LH is the same so it not about adjusting rating for local conditions.

BYC is going ORR wonder how that will work out?

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

Yea, that comment re ww/lw always surprises me and certainly does not reflect my view.

 

I would hope one reason people race is to become better sailors and there is no better learning ground that OD classes on ww/lw courses. I look forward to it actually.

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

I very much think this and think government marks and GOING SOMEPLACE make (or made) VASTLY more enjoyable racing.

W/L might be fun for dinghies, but taking a big boat out to do that is beyond me. The only reason I would ever do it is to get a lot of crew practice done in a short time period.

Can you imagine:

W/L in an Opti

W/L in a 420

W/L in a Laser

W/L in a 30 foot boat

W/L in a 40 foot boat

W/L in a 50 foot boat.

Die

Have someone drag your coffin back and forth across the church but never go out the door - that IS what you are used to :rolleyes:

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

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The thing that bugs me the most about PHRF is people bitching and whining about their rating and how it's "too punitive" when they're ignoring the #1 tenant of PHRF: that you're sailing its boat to its potential. I'll illustrate this in a few vignettes.

 

Crew Work: One blown tack on a beat can equate to 3 seconds of difference, no question. A slow drop or poor trimming around a bottom mark can mean another 6 seconds. The trimmer letting the kite collapse in the gybe is another couple seconds. These don't result in the boat just stopping for all that time, but examine the counterfactual of a boat that was able to accelerate quicker, carve a better line around the gate, or keep their kite full through the gybe and maybe escape a wind shadow because of it and you'll see that boat winds up much further ahead and this has nothing to do with boat performance, rating, or the handicap board.

 

Mast Setup: This is where PHRF racers can lean a lot from OD sailors. Show up to any small keelboat or dinghy OD event and look at what those sailors are doing with their boat. They're adjusting their shrouds, mast butt, and forestay in between every race - or they've developed ways to change the rig shape during the race with aggressive fracalating or similar tricks. Those sailors live by their tuning guides and are constantly refining them for every wind and wave condition. Now back to PHRF. We all know a boat that puts their boat in the water in May and puts the rig in and tunes it to the 8-12 knot "base" that their sailmaker gave them 5 years ago then leaves it there. From there, they don't add turns when it gets windy and they don't take them off when it's super light. A bad tack or old sails pales in "badness" comparison to sailing a beat in 20 knots with your rig tuned for 12.

 

Weight: Not crew weight - (sidebar: crew weight shouldn't be given a credit or limit as it's hurting participation). But I mean "stuff." And not just how much "stuff" but where that stuff is. I can't tell you how many people in my local fleet sail around with sails in the bow, anchors in the cockpit lazarettes, a full library of piloting books above the port settee, a mechanics grade tool kit under the starboard quarterberth, and a full duffelbag for every crew member sliding around on the cockpit sole between every tack. Not only does this weight contribute to overall "slowness" by hurting your acceleration and top end speed, but it also causes the boat to pitch and roll much more violently. With every wave, every move of the helm, the weight of the equipment and gear in the ends of the boat experiences a gravity of its own and that gravity is fighting the gravity of the boat as it's trying to stabilize itself. A boat traveling straight and level is a boat going faster.

 

Tactics: Too many people equate this with "how well can you muscle in at a start and fuck the people around you" or "how you can get away with skirting the rules at mark roundings." I've sailed with enough Olympians to know that there are people out there who just read the course better. They can pick a side of the course well, spot puffs well, and call the favored end of a start line to within a degree. These are skills that should be studied and refined over time, and are the most valuable aspect of the pre-race period.

 

-------

 

This diatribe is not meant to serve as a browbeating for every PHRF racer out there. Bob and Jane shouldn't feel the need to fuck with their forestay to and from the racecourse on Wednesday night. To the same end, Bob and Jane should recognize that the boat winning every week because they sail the boat well, leave their duffel bags on the dock, and put the time in for practice and preparation is winning because they're sailing to what the rating rule assumes, not because the rating on Bob and Jane's Islander 41 is wrong.

 

Furthermore, with practice, crew debriefs, and hard work, everything I've mentioned above can improve the performance of any PHRF boat without costing the owner a cent. And if I were on a PHRF board, I would take the "evidence" an owner brings me that his rating is wrong (mostly race results, and maybe boat specs) and put it on the table before asking to see his tuning guide for various windspeeds. 90% of the time this will illicit a blank response or stammering. My followup will be that if he comes back in a year after adjusting his rig for changing conditions and is still having performance problems we can talk about his rating.

+1

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

 

 

That's always been my issue. It's not the racing in and of itself, when on the course I'm usually having a great time. It's the cumulative grind that comes from doing more or less the same exact thing over and over again. I can't tell you the number of times I've been talking with the other people I sail with about a given race and we struggle to place which regatta it was part of.

 

On the other hand it generally costs even more money to be competitive in distance racing so there is that trade-off.

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

 

 

That's always been my issue. It's not the racing in and of itself, when on the course I'm usually having a great time. It's the cumulative grind that comes from doing more or less the same exact thing over and over again. I can't tell you the number of times I've been talking with the other people I sail with about a given race and we struggle to place which regatta it was part of.

 

On the other hand it generally costs even more money to be competitive in distance racing so there is that trade-off.

 

 

 

 

What I don't understand is the reluctance to have any course other than w/l, with a start to weather. Why not have downwind starts from time to time. Triangle and/or gold cup courses. A day race around government marks. The way we promote sailing, even to ourselves, is like the old Saturday Night Live skit about the store that sold only one type of scotch tape - that was the ONLY thing they sold. Aren't we smarter than this? (I guess not).

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We used to have a rotating race committee and one guy had no clue about course setup. He put up all the boards he had in random order and the course was like a bowl of spaghetti that got thrown on a chart of the river. We had a couple of legs in there what were maybe 50 yards long. We were ROFLMAO the whole way around the course, but did have a word with the RC after :lol:

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

 

 

That's always been my issue. It's not the racing in and of itself, when on the course I'm usually having a great time. It's the cumulative grind that comes from doing more or less the same exact thing over and over again. I can't tell you the number of times I've been talking with the other people I sail with about a given race and we struggle to place which regatta it was part of.

 

On the other hand it generally costs even more money to be competitive in distance racing so there is that trade-off.

 

 

 

 

What I don't understand is the reluctance to have any course other than w/l, with a start to weather. Why not have downwind starts from time to time. Triangle and/or gold cup courses. A day race around government marks. The way we promote sailing, even to ourselves, is like the old Saturday Night Live skit about the store that sold only one type of scotch tape - that was the ONLY thing they sold. Aren't we smarter than this? (I guess not).

 

You think you have rating bitches now bring back a heap of random leg stuff with modern sport boats and all other grades of boat design mismatch and hang on. The rating system will have to evolve to a three rating system like SoCal then i'm all in. If not those boats that go the same speed no matter which way you point them are going to be really pissed when the paint gets sucked off the side by a sport boat screaming by on a nice 20 knot reach

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Do people really think W/L racing is to blame for the decline in PHRF? Maybe short course get in as many as you can is. I wonder if a few less races on longer WL courses would be a better fit. Triangles these days with all of the newer boats wouldn't seem to be the answer and i damn well know that 25 mile triangles are not it. Maybe we just go back to government marks and set something crazy all over the place.

 

Me i just think its money and time and not so much the course

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

 

 

That's always been my issue. It's not the racing in and of itself, when on the course I'm usually having a great time. It's the cumulative grind that comes from doing more or less the same exact thing over and over again. I can't tell you the number of times I've been talking with the other people I sail with about a given race and we struggle to place which regatta it was part of.

 

On the other hand it generally costs even more money to be competitive in distance racing so there is that trade-off.

 

 

 

 

What I don't understand is the reluctance to have any course other than w/l, with a start to weather. Why not have downwind starts from time to time. Triangle and/or gold cup courses. A day race around government marks. The way we promote sailing, even to ourselves, is like the old Saturday Night Live skit about the store that sold only one type of scotch tape - that was the ONLY thing they sold. Aren't we smarter than this? (I guess not).

 

Where?

 

Here in the Chesapeake a HUGE part of CBYRA racing is distance - not ww/lw - racing. The OD dinghy (and other) folks like ww/lw and so that is what those clubs set-up for them, but for the rating racers (and CBYRA OD classes) its lots and lots of distance races so much so that I look forward to the rare ww/lw regatta like NOODS, Screwpile or what used to be NBRW. And I gotta tell you the distance races are seeing a much greater drop off in participation than the OD ww/lw clubs.

 

What I don't understand and do have to LOL a bit at is the Naps folks complaining about the lack of distance races and preponderance of ww/lw because its really not so... If you can't find a distance race on on the Chesapeake you really ain't looking very hard or can't read. Go check the Green Book or CBYRA schedule here (which is not nearly a complete list of races): http://www.cbyra.org/application/files/1614/9183/2677/2017_Schedule_Grid_031517.pdf

 

Fast approaching is the Down the Bay Race: http://hamptonyc.com/events/down-the-bay/

 

Its a great distance race and fun cruise home over a long weekend (or cruise up and race home). The hosting club will go miles out of their way to help and support racers and they throw a great party. For sure the OA and DTB racers would love to have all those complaining about ww/lw and wanting more distance races to come do the DTB race. Lets see how many do!?! :unsure:

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In the dark ages racing a Cal 25 in San Diego the courses were generally W-R-L-W-L and windward finish. For the Ton Cup there were two of those followed by a Round the N. Coronado island then another buoy race and the "long distance" race leaving N. Coronado and Sugar Loaf Rock to port.

That worked out to a lot of racing in a Quarter Tonner.

 

I raced with the same owner on both the Cal and later a Ranger 23 (1/4 ton) and we generally sailed with his wife and sometimes infant daughter aboard. Deliveries from San Diego north for the MdR-SD race always had rally starts and stopovers in Oceanside, Newport and Catalina with families on the delivery and most of the time on the race back south. Racing really was a family activity and got the kids involved who then usually stayed in sailing.

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In the dark ages racing a Cal 25 in San Diego the courses were generally W-R-L-W-L and windward finish. For the Ton Cup there were two of those followed by a Round the N. Coronado island then another buoy race and the "long distance" race leaving N. Coronado and Sugar Loaf Rock to port.

That worked out to a lot of racing in a Quarter Tonner.

 

I raced with the same owner on both the Cal and later a Ranger 23 (1/4 ton) and we generally sailed with his wife and sometimes infant daughter aboard. Deliveries from San Diego north for the MdR-SD race always had rally starts and stopovers in Oceanside, Newport and Catalina with families on the delivery and most of the time on the race back south. Racing really was a family activity and got the kids involved who then usually stayed in sailing.

Here's the problem with these courses with different numbers of windward and leeward legs - in a mixed fleet of sporty and less sporty boats, it creates a definite advantage to the less sporty boats. As long as you're willing to balance out the racing with some L-W-R-L-W with downwind finishes then I guess it's ok ;)

 

BTW I totally get why there aren't more upwind finishes. Most RC's I've seen can barely get one RC boat and a mark boat together - trying to finish folks at a top mark is usually too much for them to handle while also starting races at the bottom mark.

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There was only one R/C boat. The start line was half way between the windward and leeward marks, piece of cake for windward or leeward finishes.

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There was only one R/C boat. The start line was half way between the windward and leeward marks, piece of cake for windward or leeward finishes.

still an uneven number of w/l legs, so that just accentuates the differences between boat types.

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I don't understand about even number of W/L legs being any better than odd number. As far as more weather legs favoring non sporty boats it just evens the playing field. Shouldn't have all finishes downwind romps to favor planning hulls.

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I don't understand about even number of W/L legs being any better than odd number. As far as more weather legs favoring non sporty boats it just evens the playing field. Shouldn't have all finishes downwind romps to favor planning hulls.

that's making the assumption that a sporboat and a leadmine are equal upwind - they're not. I can't point with a J109 upwind and they have more waterline, but they can't hold me downwind (usually). that's why we both rate 72. so if they beat me to the weather mark, and I make up the ground on the downwind, then if they get 3 upwind legs vs 2 downwind legs they will beat me every single time. Likewise if I get more downwind than upwind I'm going to beat them every single time. It's funny, isn't it, that two boats can have the same rating but different strengths?

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I know I’m a bit late to the party, but here are some article ideas:

  • How to pick the right Dacron triangles.
  • Why your rating isn’t correct and you really should be winning.
  • Sportboats: a smart sailor's guide to safety at sea!

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I don't understand about even number of W/L legs being any better than odd number. As far as more weather legs favoring non sporty boats it just evens the playing field. Shouldn't have all finishes downwind romps to favor planning hulls.

that's making the assumption that a sporboat and a leadmine are equal upwind - they're not. I can't point with a J109 upwind and they have more waterline, but they can't hold me downwind (usually). that's why we both rate 72. so if they beat me to the weather mark, and I make up the ground on the downwind, then if they get 3 upwind legs vs 2 downwind legs they will beat me every single time. Likewise if I get more downwind than upwind I'm going to beat them every single time. It's funny, isn't it, that two boats can have the same rating but different strengths?

 

And you're making the assumption that a sport boat and "lead mine" are equal downwind. So the sport boat guys will only be happy with courses that just go from reach to reach? Do triangle/w/l/finish upwind courses and sporties should pick up enough on the reaches to have a fighting chance on the final beat.

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This is a great way to grow the sport. Trash on the main outlet that allows the average person to race a sailboat. Yes PHRF needs to be improved but all this site does is shit on it. With the "power of SA" why not work to help the sport, rather than just shit on it.

 

 

You have a 26X ...............yes :o:o:o:lol::lol:

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I don't understand about even number of W/L legs being any better than odd number. As far as more weather legs favoring non sporty boats it just evens the playing field. Shouldn't have all finishes downwind romps to favor planning hulls.

that's making the assumption that a sporboat and a leadmine are equal upwind - they're not. I can't point with a J109 upwind and they have more waterline, but they can't hold me downwind (usually). that's why we both rate 72. so if they beat me to the weather mark, and I make up the ground on the downwind, then if they get 3 upwind legs vs 2 downwind legs they will beat me every single time. Likewise if I get more downwind than upwind I'm going to beat them every single time. It's funny, isn't it, that two boats can have the same rating but different strengths?
And you're making the assumption that a sport boat and "lead mine" are equal downwind. So the sport boat guys will only be happy with courses that just go from reach to reach? Do triangle/w/l/finish upwind courses and sporties should pick up enough on the reaches to have a fighting chance on the final beat.
Actually, I'm assuming we are not equal downwind. I never said anything about "only" being happy if reaches are involved. But I'm not going to be happy if there are unequal numbers of upwind and downwind legs in a w/l race. Even when there is a triangle involved.

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See attached tabulation sheet.

I a little research I did many years ago.  Current effects on handicapping.

This "race" is between a boat with a PHRF 105 and one with a PHRF 175 
(60 seconds/mile)
 
Average boat speed according to PHRF;  3600/(600+PHRF#)   in light wind.
 
Race is 2 miles between buoys ( 4 miles)  with a 45 degree tack going upwind.
Actual distance over the water  upwind would be 2.82 miles.
 
I stepped the current from +1 ( tacking against the current) to 
-1 ( tacking with the current)
 
Now -- if both boats "sail to their #"  the 105 boat should finish 4 minutes in front of the 175 boat.  
Which it does -- in ZERO current.
 
As the current increases delta between finishing times changes.  
Corrected finishes when tacking against the current gives the 105 a 1.26 minute advantage. using Time on Distance.
Time on Time  cuts the advantage to .76 minutes.  Still significant.
 
When tacking with the current  the advantage is minimal -- 
actually favoring the slower boat, until the current reaches 1 kt.
 
Now, these results are based on the boats sailing to their #...    Light wind.  
Do you really think the PHRF speed formula  is accurate ?  
Do the boats in your fleet even come close to their PHRF  calculated speeds?
 
F-UP  fast boat (105) time going upwind in minutes  F-DN  fast boat  (105) time going downwind.
S-UP ......    S-DN...
 
Note: I just used PHRF's own formulas for this study.
 
When the boats speeds are slower the effect of the current is amplified.   Advantage -- Faster ( lower PHRF #) boat.
 
 
 
 

PHRF-RACE-105-165.pdf

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Bragging Rights - the REAL prize for winning on PHRF

Your PHRF Rating does not define you

The Psychology of Sailing - learning to live with PHRF induced depression

PHRF and PTSD - Whats the difference?

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14 hours ago, Hershey said:

 

 

See attached tabulation sheet.

I a little research I did many years ago.  Current effects on handicapping.

This "race" is between a boat with a PHRF 105 and one with a PHRF 175 
(60 seconds/mile)
 
Average boat speed according to PHRF;  3600/(600+PHRF#)   in light wind.
 
Race is 2 miles between buoys ( 4 miles)  with a 45 degree tack going upwind.
Actual distance over the water  upwind would be 2.82 miles.
 
I stepped the current from +1 ( tacking against the current) to 
-1 ( tacking with the current)
 
Now -- if both boats "sail to their #"  the 105 boat should finish 4 minutes in front of the 175 boat.  
Which it does -- in ZERO current.
 
As the current increases delta between finishing times changes.  
Corrected finishes when tacking against the current gives the 105 a 1.26 minute advantage. using Time on Distance.
Time on Time  cuts the advantage to .76 minutes.  Still significant.
 
When tacking with the current  the advantage is minimal -- 
actually favoring the slower boat, until the current reaches 1 kt.
 
Now, these results are based on the boats sailing to their #...    Light wind.  
Do you really think the PHRF speed formula  is accurate ?  
Do the boats in your fleet even come close to their PHRF  calculated speeds?
 
F-UP  fast boat (105) time going upwind in minutes  F-DN  fast boat  (105) time going downwind.
S-UP ......    S-DN...
 
Note: I just used PHRF's own formulas for this study.
 
When the boats speeds are slower the effect of the current is amplified.   Advantage -- Faster ( lower PHRF #) boat.
 
 
 
 

PHRF-RACE-105-165.pdf

That's why you shouldn't have more than a 30 second spread!

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I agree that spreads should be limited, which is the cause of most of the problems.  

But -- PHRF US should make that PERFECTLY CLEAR.  My club, for many special races --  such as our Holiday series  will mix a J-105 and an O'Day 22...   :-(

Then they wonder why the smaller boats do not come out ......

I recently paid $30 to race in a multi club  (6) regatta and my Capri 22 was matched up with 2 boats ( 30  & 36 ft.).  One had a PHRF around 125 and the other around 180.  Guess what Regatta I am not going to race again next year.

Oh well.

Thanks

 

 

 

 

 

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On 4/17/2017 at 4:15 PM, ryley said:

In my opinion W/L is adding to the decline in racing in general, regardless of handicap system. Take the Mass Bay schedule for instance. There are 10 north shore qualifying regattas, of which 9 are generally W/L and the other is an overnight distance race. There are 8 qualifiers on the South Shore, and 3 are generally W/L and the other 5 are round islands or government marks.

 

So 12 regattas, around 15 days of racing, 3 races per day, 2 laps per race. 90 sets and douses... BIRW is 4 days of W/L and one RTI and everyone looks forward to the RTI. I can't believe I'm the only one who thinks racing two lap W/L and then getting 10 minutes to shove a sandwich down your throat before you do it all over again turns into a grind.

Interestingly, the Mudhead Hospice regatta added a spinnaker class to the Navigators circle as an opportunity for boats to get away from W/L for a change.  

One boat signed up ...and they were subsequently moved to the W/L circle.

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On April 17, 2017 at 1:37 PM, kent_island_sailor said:

Wess - you ARE wrong. I grew up racing "big boats". There were always kids and families on the other race boats you would meet up with after a race. It was a very fun way to sail :D Also <cough wink nod> once one got past age 15 or so, the wonderfully non-existent checking of age at the rum table and beer keg did not go unnoticed B)

I actually had almost zero interest in dinghy racing as a kid. Why screw around going back and forth in the harbor when you could be going places and meeting people. Learning the 15th way to move a 420 around the course by sculling was of little interest compared to being navigator on long distance races or a heavy air spinnaker duel. (At age 12 I was king of RDF navigation.)

 

As for how the dual-purpose boat died, I have some guesses.

1. As racing become more serious, wives and kids either didn't want to go out or were no longer welcome.

2. W/L racing likewise chased off people racing for fun, which IMHO W/L is most certainly NOT on a big boat.

3. Serious people bought serious boats and did NOT give a crap about comfort or cruising or if their wives ever even got near the boat.

4. The falling finances of the young killed the segment of people looking for a boat that was a fun family recreational boat as well as possibly a racer.

 

You also may want to check your trolling instincts if you can't even agree with what YOU write :lol:

All true.

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1 hour ago, Hershey said:

I agree that spreads should be limited, which is the cause of most of the problems.  

But -- PHRF US should make that PERFECTLY CLEAR.  My club, for many special races --  such as our Holiday series  will mix a J-105 and an O'Day 22...   :-(

Then they wonder why the smaller boats do not come out ......

I recently paid $30 to race in a multi club  (6) regatta and my Capri 22 was matched up with 2 boats ( 30  & 36 ft.).  One had a PHRF around 125 and the other around 180.  Guess what Regatta I am not going to race again next year.

Oh well.

Thanks

 

 

 

 

 

If 12 boats with ratings from 50 to 170 sign up, it sucks to be in one big class and it sucks to always "win or place" in your two boat class too :(

This kind of thing is a reality for some races now.

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I see some of the input here has been a dissatisfaction with the W/L courses.    

Problem is; the PHRF #'s are based on W/L courses.  Deviate from W/L and the handicap falls apart..

Most of these problems could be solved with tight PHRF spreads, and with one-design they go away.

Aaaah, things have changed.  25 years ago the 6 club association I belong to would have  3 PHRF &  a  12 boat J-24 fleet show up at a regatta.    Now the 1 J-24 sails PHRF.

I guess one can sum it up with any handicapping system;; Sailers are trying to get perfect results with an imperfect system.

Hershey

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12 hours ago, silent bob said:

That's why you shouldn't have more than a 30 second spread!

That is one way to look at it. On the other hand tomorrow evening we have one of the great races of our season. It is a pursuit start with the slowest boats (a pair of Cal 20's) starting at 1600 and the scratch boat, a Farr 40, starting at 1835. In between there is quite a diversity from pocket rockets like a Melges 20 and a J/90 to cruisers like a Sabre 36-2 and a Worth 40, as well as some racing boats like a Farr 395 and a Figaro 2. It is a 34 mile round trip course with a combination of running and reaching on the way up the river and a beat back to the finish which is usually between 2300 and midnight.   

Who will win? Who knows. Maybe the largely favorable current will favor the smaller boats. Or maybe waterline will matter more given the reaching. Or maybe it will be breezy enough for the Melges 20 to plane past everyone. Or maybe it will turn light after sunset and the Farr 40 will smoke us all. Hell, even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while so maybe the J-105 will win from the middle of the fleet. Or my little old woody might surprise some folks.

The point is that, while we all take it pretty seriously, it is not a foregone conclusion and the winner will almost certainly be a well sailed boat. In any case, it isn't a world championship, and there is no money at stake. We should all finish around the same time and head up to the Club for some warm chowder, cold wine and stories. What could be better than that?

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