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      Abbreviated rules   07/28/2017

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oceaneer

PHRF NW vs BC?? WTF

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Ok, I am confused on the backstory as to why in BC we have BC PHRF and NW PHRF??? 

Can someone straighten me out as why I have to pay/join both? And why we just dont have one.. 

Confused 

Oceaneer

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22 minutes ago, oceaneer said:

Ok, I am confused on the backstory as to why in BC we have BC PHRF and NW PHRF??? 

Can someone straighten me out as why I have to pay/join both? And why we just dont have one.. 

Confused 

Oceaneer

Because the water is thicker in Canada and boats have different handicaps there.

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19 minutes ago, Rum Runner said:

Because the water is thicker in Canada and boats have different handicaps there.

So you are saying that the "Border Wall" has been built, just to the north, and only under the surface of the water. 

And on the Canadian side, we are more salty, given our more manly/rugged nature... and all of this salt has not passed through the wall. 

Ok now I am understanding a bit better. 

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Someone more educated than me will hopefully chime in with all the gory details and correct any bits I've got wrong...

But to quickly answer your question, once upon a time all the sailboat racing in the 'Pacific Northwest' (which is either the northwest corner of the US, the southwest corner of Canada and approximately the northeast part of the Pacific ocean, but I digress) was done under PHRF NW...  with the majority of the racing in Puget Sound and Georgia Strait, so essentially Seattle and environs and Vancouver, BC with a little bit of Victoria in the mix.

Everyone raced under the PHRF NW rating scheme, but at some point Vancouver (I believe) started tweaking the ratings for their boats to improve their local racing scene. However whatever the Vancouver folks were doing conflicted with Seattle/NW, and apparently because of some strong personalities and an unwillingness to compromise on both sides Vancouver decided to spawn their own rating system named PHRF BC and the split was born.

This meant that yacht clubs had to decide which system they wanted to use. Easy choice for US clubs, but harder for the non-Vancouver clubs in Canada, like Victoria and Nanaimo. Royal Victoria hosts the Swiftsure race which historically draws a lot of US boats, and are a NW shop at the moment, while across town CFSA is a BC club.

it`s SOOOO annoying for racers... if you show up with a BC rating for a NW event (and vice versa) some organizers will `convert` your rating for free, others may charge or insist that you get the other flavor of rating. And it`s bad for racing because if you`re a Vancouver boat with a BC rating it`s an extra layer of goo to work through to get a NW rating for Swiftsure and if you`re a Seattle boat with a NW rating you have to jump through those hoops to do Southern Straits, etc...

Should they be harmonized for the greater good of sailing in the area? YES!

Will it happen when there are boats in each rating system who won't like what the 'new' rating will be if they merge? Sadly, probably not....

 

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I'm just going to add that Sailish.com is a good local blog that has some recent posts on area handicapping.  They are promoting a shift to Club ORC for competitive racing, and leaving PHRF for more social racing:

http://sailish.com/index.php/2017/12/22/the-elephant-in-the-bathtub/

I personally don't have a strong opinion on handicapping systems, but would like to fleets better split between sport boats and displacement boats.  Maybe Club ORC can be more fair without having to make that split.  Swiftsure does a pretty good job with making classes (but has the fleet size to make it possible).

They have some other related posts including a large survey (and analysis) looking at why racing participation is dwindling.

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Thanks, Alex W, for referring to my blog. I did a survey that showed clearly there's a big portion of the NW racing scene that has issues with PHRF. The NW/BC split is stupid, to put it mildly. We do have ORC there for the taking and the big boats (for the most part) are happy with it. For a club cert it's cheaper than PHRF. ORC for the serious guys and PHRF for the casuals/newbies - that way you can play loose with the ratings of folks who have old sails, anchors etc who want to get out and race. And the folks with the 3DIs can race to a system being refined around the world. Yeah, it splits the fleet, but it might make for happier racing at the high end and more participation overall.

 

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There is a multi-page thread around here somewhere that delves into this issue and provides some insight.

I guess in the meantime, we should just be happy that ORR and IRC have all but disappeared from the area, so Vancouver big boats only have to carry three certificates each year.

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2 hours ago, Grande Mastere Dreade said:

probably sometime ago,  BC got tired of NW PHRF bullshit and took their ball and started their own organization..

Not exactly. I knew all about this up close & personally. Politics, BS and someone wanted a job. And got it. I'm too busy get into this and I'd rather sort my sock drawer than that.It was back in the 80's too.

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If some silly SOB wanted to start an amalgamation move... Where would the idiot start?

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20 minutes ago, oceaneer said:

If some silly SOB wanted to start an amalgamation move... Where would the idiot start?

Waste of time.  

There is talk of amalgamation all the time.  As recently as about two years, but it always manages to collapse.  There is a thread on here about the last time.  Everyone was excited, but then it died a rather quiet death IIRC.  I have no idea of the sordid details. Someone like Dash34 may be able to fill you in.

The only upshot of that was that a good chunk of the Island (except RVic) jumped over to BC.  I can't recall if Kelowna did anything, but I think they are with NW.

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Also, BC started to change it's sail measurement system to be in line with PNW (and the rest of North America?).  So that was a positive.

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6 minutes ago, Expat Canuck said:

Also, BC started to change it's sail measurement system to be in line with PNW (and the rest of North America?).  So that was a positive.

By measurement system,  do you mean: what and how it is measured, how sail area is calculated, or the break points?

I recall there was a bit of a "loophole" in the break point for Code 6 spins, which I think has disappeared now.

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9 minutes ago, Expat Canuck said:

What and how measured.  There were also some changes to ISP measurement, i think

Thanks.

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3 hours ago, 12 metre said:

Waste of time.  

There is talk of amalgamation all the time.  As recently as about two years, but it always manages to collapse.  There is a thread on here about the last time.  Everyone was excited, but then it died a rather quiet death IIRC.  I have no idea of the sordid details. Someone like Dash34 may be able to fill you in.

The only upshot of that was that a good chunk of the Island (except RVic) jumped over to BC.  I can't recall if Kelowna did anything, but I think they are with NW.

I should know more details about this, but it was long ago. In the beginning, Penticton, Kelowna, Summerland were North West. At sometime it changed to BC, and under the direction of one fairly strong willed person. The appeals process seemed to improve with BC sailing, but some decisions were not dealt with adequately IMO. Having said that I had one boat where the rating was too low ( since sold ) and one boat, a Tanzer 22 where I think the rating is rather nice for the coast. About 236. My Viking 33 was rated by North West years ago. For the sissy inshore race at Swiftsure, I submitted all the measurements to the Royal Vic guy and got a reasonabl number. 138 I think.

It should all be one big deal in my opinion. For adult summer camp we raced David's Laser 28 in a level 30 group.  I was a member of Penticton 73 to 79, and Kelowna 79 to about 008.

Unkle Krusty

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4 hours ago, Maxx Baqustae said:
7 hours ago, Grande Mastere Dreade said:

probably sometime ago,  BC got tired of NW PHRF bullshit and took their ball and started their own organization..

Not exactly. I knew all about this up close & personally. Politics, BS and someone wanted a job. And got it. I'm too busy get into this and I'd rather sort my sock drawer than that.It was back in the 80's too.

Very much not exactly.  Vancouver City (Mainland BC) decided to go their own way.  Vancouver Island (Mostly) decided to stick with PHRF NW.   So the split is even a bigger pain in the ass for Canadian boats.  I think there was some jealousy about Provincial funding for sport and some such political mess.  Therefore, interest/participation in "cross-straits" events has dropped off, witness the Southern Straits decline.  Club ORC may help sort things out.  But from what I understand, the friendly handshake between the Island and the Mainland is al

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5 hours ago, oceaneer said:

If some silly SOB wanted to start an amalgamation move... Where would the idiot start?

Been there, done that, got the t-shirt and the ostracization.  I was chair of a NW regatta and wanted the BC boats to be able to have their ratings converted for free.  I got my hand slapped and was told that NW would sue the club if we did that.  I stepped out of the chair position and took on PRO instead, but started an initiative to see if the time was right to put BC and NW back together or at least make membership reciprocal to make regatta attendance easier.  There was a meeting at SNSYC attended by many race chairs and local PHRF experts/handicappers.

What I found was that the bad blood was very deep between the two organizations, so deep that there was no chance of a merger at the time, or even reciprocal membership.  That was some years ago - most clubs are now offering free rating conversions and so far they are not being sued.  I say that in jest, the management at NW has changed a lot and they seem to get it now.

More recently a few enlightened and well-respected folks on the Island tried to start a merger initiative - on-line discussions seemed to favour consolidating the ratings but leaving the administration side of the two organizations separate.  Last I heard NW was on-side for discussing consolidating the ratings with BC,  but BC was not interested in  holding those discussions, and that is where we sit today. 

BC seems to think that consolidating the ratings can not be done, because the appeal process will be too complicated.  The problem they don't think can be solved is how to create a distributed appeal system.  There are really four regions - BC mainland, Vancouver Island, Puget Sound and Oregon.  How do we have appeals accessible to everyone?  I personally believe this problem can be solved, but management at BC disagrees.

Pity really.  But my sock drawer is just about as disorganized as Max's, so I'll go deal with that now....

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I've kind of watched this from a distance for quite awhile and without knowing all the intricacies, hurt feelings and whatever, the problem to me seems that the two systems could never meld because BC is based on  one second increments of correction  and NW is set up at  three second increments. How do you get past that?

 

Moe

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I am a handicapper at BC.  I was also born in '82 and missed the actual split of the two groups.  Suffice to say that the remaining good reasons for two separate organizations center on the different appeals processes and particularly the appeals locations - NW appeals are always going to be hours away for Vancouverites.

 

During the last attempted "uprising" BC was also doing some doublechecking of sail area formulas and took the opportunity to match their spinnaker measurement system and spinnaker code scheme to that of NW.  Literally I came as close as possible to a cut and paste job.  The huge side benefit of this is that you can now compare the base ratings of boats in both systems and make a real apples to apples comparison.  My belief is that 3 or 6 seconds between regions doesnt matter much; any more and its quite likely that one region is wrong and the other is right.

Someone somewhere most likely has such a comparison in spreadsheet form..  If you wanted a real detailed analysis.  I built such a tool but it was before the change in spinnaker rules and the data was basically unusable.

 

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4 minutes ago, Schnick said:

I am a handicapper at BC.  I was also born in '82 and missed the actual split of the two groups.  Suffice to say that the remaining good reasons for two separate organizations center on the different appeals processes and particularly the appeals locations - NW appeals are always going to be hours away for Vancouverites.

 

During the last attempted "uprising" BC was also doing some doublechecking of sail area formulas and took the opportunity to match their spinnaker measurement system and spinnaker code scheme to that of NW.  Literally I came as close as possible to a cut and paste job.  The huge side benefit of this is that you can now compare the base ratings of boats in both systems and make a real apples to apples comparison.  My belief is that 3 or 6 seconds between regions doesnt matter much; any more and its quite likely that one region is wrong and the other is right.

Someone somewhere most likely has such a comparison in spreadsheet form..  If you wanted a real detailed analysis.  I built such a tool but it was before the change in spinnaker rules and the data was basically unusable.

 

Yeah, too bad somebody doesn't invent something like Skype or Go-to-Meeting.   

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I certainly see that keeping this whole thing under one roof is probably too cumbersome. Oregon to BC, including Vancouver Island is a lot of distance to cover. To me it would be less important to rejoin the two groups than to agree on the handicaps.

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1 hour ago, Kelgato said:

I certainly see that keeping this whole thing under one roof is probably too cumbersome. Oregon to BC, including Vancouver Island is a lot of distance to cover. To me it would be less important to rejoin the two groups than to agree on the handicaps.

Thats kind of the whole point though.  If a guy in Tacoma appeals the rating of say, the X-119, the X-119 owners up here want to have their say.  You can't really just say that we will all use the same numbers.

I think the video conferencing thing will come but remember these meetings are not being held in fancy corporate boardrooms.

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What a shame... It seems so simple moving forwards. 

1)  all appeals are done online, and online only.  In this day and age we all have computers and services like "go to meeting"  or  Zoom are free for the invitee and really not that expensive for inviter. 

2) All ratings are harmonized at the mean average point for base ratings. 

3) All modifications to base ratings are off of an agreed upon formula. (Open to review after a season of results) 

4) Rating reviews for boats that seem to not be sailing to there potential... Sailors from the fleet can protest this in the first couple of years in a confidential manner as not to make to many waves. 

 

Or do we need another PHRF body to stop the bickering and take over from both.. ??

At some point, some people are going to get a worse rating and some better.. during the transition, but is that not the case now? My old cruising boat rates differently in PNW than BC. 108-123... I woudl say that PNW is closer to the truth,  but If I had to sweat out a season at 115(is).. then OK

Oceaneer

 

 

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23 hours ago, kurthoehne said:

For a club cert it's cheaper than PHRF.

I started the process for Club ORC, but it costs $165 vs $60/year for PHRF-NW.  That isn't crazy expensive, but it also isn't cheaper.  I guess I'll wait until it's in use to actually get one. 

https://shop.ussailing.org/shop/orc-club-certificate-report-all-changes-boat-name-sail-in-order-notes/

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It always amuses me that people who handicap race 30' to 60' sailboats and seriously argue over their ratings and sweat/brag over their pickle dishes can complain over paying for a reliable system that costs about one winch handle per year.  Or a fraction of what they pay in race fees. 

I suspect the way to make a rating system popular is to give boat owners a coupon for a couple of free beers redeemable at any participating club.  

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I'm not complaining, I'm pointing out that Kurt's article has a mistake and that I'll wait until we're racing Club ORC to buy my rating.  When I read that it was cheaper that PHRF I was just going to buy it now to be ready.

I haven't heard from any of the local clubs that they are changing to Club ORC in 2018.  Have you?

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We paid $56 to renew our ORC Club certificate for 2017.  Haven't gotten the renewal for 2018 yet, but I suspect that now the US Sailing is involved it will go up.  I don't recall last year if we paid ORC directly or ORC Canada.  Regardless, it's still a bargain for a 3 number measured system.

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54 minutes ago, Green Card said:

We paid $56 to renew our ORC Club certificate for 2017.  Haven't gotten the renewal for 2018 yet, but I suspect that now the US Sailing is involved it will go up.  I don't recall last year if we paid ORC directly or ORC Canada.  Regardless, it's still a bargain for a 3 number measured system.

Not to mention that there's something to be said about a measurement based handicap system. 

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1 hour ago, Left Shift said:

It always amuses me that people who handicap race 30' to 60' sailboats and seriously argue over their ratings and sweat/brag over their pickle dishes can complain over paying for a reliable system that costs about one winch handle per year.  Or a fraction of what they pay in race fees. 

I suspect the way to make a rating system popular is to give boat owners a coupon for a couple of free beers redeemable at any participating club.  

Exactly. In a meeting  PHRF administrator he said: "What do expect for (at that time) for $35 a year rating/certificate? I laughed, a bit, as I thought he was being an a-hole but I thought about it later he was correct. PHRF was designed for Ma & PA casual racing for their Vistacruiser wagon not for real racing with high end boats. It's done by a volunteer handicapper with you "declare" many of your measurements to the handicapper. That allows for fudging the numbers; if not out and out cheating. As witnessed by one old coot that added 18 inches to their boom, used oversize sails, modifications to the hull all never declaring any of it saying it doesn't really matter for speed but got called on it eventually. Some old IOR boats that had a lot of lead ballast in the bilges taken out; like hundreds of pounds not declaring any of it but still the same rating forever. But I digress here but it bugs me to this day.    And  single point number doesn't pencil very well with the advent of "sport boats" that are different animals completely. It is almost impossible to rate them fairly or properly. Soon are they are on the plane the handicap numbers go right out of the window for mixed fleets like that. When I started to race in big boats in the early 70's I only knew IOR in those days and had no idea that PHRF even existed until 1980 or so. An IOR rating was an actual measurement system that was certified and surveyed that it is correct from a certified measurerer. Costing hundreds of dollars (even in the 70's & 80's) but hard to cheat that way. So can you bitch about the price of ORC club? Well, I was one of the advocates for ORC from the get go for a real measurement rule. It was implemented but even then the bitching with that it was an awful rule and wanted to go back to PHRF. Funny, with our (very successful program over 10 years) we could cross-pollinate in events between ORC to PHRF and had the pickle dishes to prove it. We found that ORC was a lot tougher on us than PHRF ever did but we believed in it so never complained ever; just suck it up and went racing. I think we won a Balleenas race or maybe Straits by 1 second when PHRF 30 seconds or minute difference maybe? It still proved the point IMHO. 

There are many real stories like that but my sock drawer beckons! 

   

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+1 for the folks that support ORC Club (multi-number measurement rule) for more serious racing and PHRF for racing the family station wagon.  And +1 that PHRF NW and BC should remain separate organizations for administration of certificates and collecting fees, but they should consolidate their ratings.  Creating a fair joint appeals system is feasible IMHO.  If we take the serious racers out of PHRF then the appeals process gets that much easier.  Want to argue about what you think is an unfair PHRF appeal decision?  Go get an ORC Club rating and race with the big dogs.

An anonymous, on-line PHRF appeals process would result in a flurry of appeals and probably sort out some of the issues that are literally floating around in PHRF NW/BC.  Everyone can attend, included all the handicappers in both systems, no matter where they live and at no cost.  All evidence/data would have to be put on-line for everyone to see, and the discussion, decision and rationale for the decision should be put on-line as well, similar to what we do (or should do) with protests. 

Back to the sock drawer....

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14 minutes ago, Streetwise said:

Use the National Reference Ratings as a baseline to start unifying ratings. 

Sorry, but LOL.  Not the tiniest chance, IMHO. 

Me...I now race ORC almost exclusively.  

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I’m not from your region, so I don’t know the local dynamics, but the NRRs have been useful for our Lake Champlain PHRF.

ORC might be cool, but since we don’t charge for PHRF, it would be a hard sell here. 

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1 hour ago, dash34 said:

+1 for the folks that support ORC Club (multi-number measurement rule) for more serious racing and PHRF for racing the family station wagon. 

The problem with that for a lot of clubs is they don't have the numbers... if you're having trouble getting enough boats out so you can have 2 divisions to narrow the rating bands, then having half of them race under a different system will really thin things out...

I don't care if it's NW BC or ORC, i just wish it was all the same...

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  • Alex W may be right in pointing out an error in my story about ORC. At the time of the writing, you could get an ORC rating for $50, but it appears that today going through US Sailing costs more. The US Sailing cost is here: http://www.ussailing.org/wp-content/uploads/DARoot/Offshore/ORC/US Sailing ORC Policy.pdf I'll keep looking into it and will provide updates to my story and if I find any further info, here as well. Thanks for pointing it out. 

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16 hours ago, overdraft said:

The problem with that for a lot of clubs is they don't have the numbers... if you're having trouble getting enough boats out so you can have 2 divisions to narrow the rating bands, then having half of them race under a different system will really thin things out...

I don't care if it's NW BC or ORC, i just wish it was all the same...

Club racing except in large clubs would likely be PHRF only.  If you bring your racing machine to a club race, you'll have to live with PHRF.  It isn't just the numbers, a lot of club race committees are going to have trouble dealing with a three number system and the additional data gathering and processing that goes with it.  I would see ORC divisions in the major races like RSI, Swiftsure, Straits, RTC, VI360, and probably VARC, but there would still be PHRF in those races too.  

The problem is really that some racing machines have more favourable ratings under PHRF than they will have under ORC Club.  This happened during the Vancouver ORC Club experiment.  They will probably stay in PHRF and create problems, but if a better appeals system is put in place they will eventually migrate over.

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I would like to say that I appreciate the comments, especially from Dash 34 who seems to be very involved. Some observations, I can't see  PHRF BC and PHRF NW  ever coming together again under one roof and why should they? If we've come to agreement on  sail measurements why can't we come to agreement on basic boat handicap? I don't know how many handicaps are appealed each year for PHRF BC but checking the minutes for PHRF NW there have only been one or sometimes two per year going back to the Big Boat fiasco. So, why should this be such a hurdle? If people are so unhappy with PHRF and their rating why aren't there more appeals? One of the things PHRF holds up over fixed measurement systems is that if you feel you're being cheated, you can appeal! Final thought, is PHRF the average guys handicap? PHRF has been losing members at a pretty alarming rate. I've looked at the  PHRF NW roster and there are less than 450 current members. I realize that will increase a bit as we get closer to spring but that's a big decline from just a couple of years ago. So where have all these boats gone? I can account for a few of them. So far in the first two races of the Southern Sound Series (Tacoma Vashon and Duwamish Head) they've had 55 PHRF boats enter and 29 Commodore flying sail and non flying sail  boats. Pretty big percentage. Is it time for PHRF to restructure and possibly start  giving old age sail allowances?

It's a lot easier to ask questions than to find answers but at this moment I'm more interested in talking boat politics than the other kind.

Moe

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46 minutes ago, Kelgato said:

.....If people are so unhappy with PHRF and their rating why aren't there more appeals? ....

Among more serious racers it is seen as kind of a dick move to appeal a competitor's rating.  We'd rather find a way to beat them on the water than beat them in the appeals room.  Plus, over time many have come to accept that PHRF may have flaws, but it is cheap and convenient for owners and race committees, and people are just willing to put up with the flaws and go racing anyway.  These days there are not many boats being sailed to their full potential, so it is hard to go to the appeals room and argue that you are sailing as fast as the boat can go and still can't win. 

There are also a few boats that win consistently that are very well sailed.  Who is going to go to the room and argue they should have a faster rating?  Not me. There aren't any races where we finish the race and can't find things we could have and should have done better.  Sure, there is a nagging sense that maybe their ratings are a touch soft, but arguing that in front of the appeals committee is going to be very difficult.  Let's just go racing and try to sail faster/better is the prevailing philosophy, as it should be.

Are there boats out there that sail poorly and win anyway?  Not among the boats that we regularly play with.  

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BTW, the 2018 NOR for Southern Straits (3.2) says PHRF NW ratings will be converted free of charge.

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21 hours ago, dash34 said:

Among more serious racers it is seen as kind of a dick move to appeal a competitor's rating.  We'd rather find a way to beat them on the water than beat them in the appeals room.  Plus, over time many have come to accept that PHRF may have flaws, but it is cheap and convenient for owners and race committees, and people are just willing to put up with the flaws and go racing anyway.  These days there are not many boats being sailed to their full potential, so it is hard to go to the appeals room and argue that you are sailing as fast as the boat can go and still can't win. 

There are also a few boats that win consistently that are very well sailed.  Who is going to go to the room and argue they should have a faster rating?  Not me. There aren't any races where we finish the race and can't find things we could have and should have done better.  Sure, there is a nagging sense that maybe their ratings are a touch soft, but arguing that in front of the appeals committee is going to be very difficult.  Let's just go racing and try to sail faster/better is the prevailing philosophy, as it should be.

Are there boats out there that sail poorly and win anyway?  Not among the boats that we regularly play with.  

Nicely put. It does feel like a dick move (and really unpleasant at that) to appeal a competitor's rating. Nobody I know WANTS to do it. So you're stuck with appealing your own rating and that's a humiliating experience having to prove that you're sailing the boat to its potential. So we're left with the "nagging sense" you refer to. Racing with a nagging sense just isn't as fun. Appeals are a horrid system that should not exist.

 

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On ‎1‎/‎11‎/‎2018 at 9:17 AM, Grande Mastere Dreade said:

probably sometime ago,  BC got tired of NW PHRF bullshit and took their ball and started their own organization..

NW PHRF is the sole reason I stopped racing in the NW

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All,

Most, if not all of you, know that I am the current PHRF-NW handicapper for CYC Seattle, and have been for the last 17 years. I am tracking this conversation, and have long experience/knowledge in both the BC Sailing and PHRF-NW circumstances. I stand firmly, and personally, committed, to moving the PHRF experience forward. 

E63sccb, please PM me directly. Indeed, I would like to know what your concern(s) are, and how/what I can personally do to address your concerns. No promises, but I will do what I can. It is troubling to hear people state that "NW PHRF is the sole reason " you reason you stopped racing in the NW. If there is ANYTHING I can do to ( practically ) address your concerns ( and, for that matter, anyone else who has similar concerns ) I will.

PHRF has challenges, and also successes. The model is always in flux, but has, and continues to be, serve many hundreds of owners and dozens of clubs, well. The process is based on well-intended volunteers, who's intent is to provide fair ratings and service to members. 

I urge any, and all, concerned members to reach out to me on PM if you have specific concerns, suggestions, or needs, and I will act accordingly. 

Thank you.

M

 

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On 1/13/2018 at 12:53 PM, dash34 said:

Among more serious racers it is seen as kind of a dick move to appeal a competitor's rating.  We'd rather find a way to beat them on the water than beat them in the appeals room.  Plus, over time many have come to accept that PHRF may have flaws, but it is cheap and convenient for owners and race committees, and people are just willing to put up with the flaws and go racing anyway.  These days there are not many boats being sailed to their full potential, so it is hard to go to the appeals room and argue that you are sailing as fast as the boat can go and still can't win. 

There are also a few boats that win consistently that are very well sailed.  Who is going to go to the room and argue they should have a faster rating?  Not me. There aren't any races where we finish the race and can't find things we could have and should have done better.  Sure, there is a nagging sense that maybe their ratings are a touch soft, but arguing that in front of the appeals committee is going to be very difficult.  Let's just go racing and try to sail faster/better is the prevailing philosophy, as it should be.

Are there boats out there that sail poorly and win anyway?  Not among the boats that we regularly play with.  

 

On 1/13/2018 at 12:10 PM, Kelgato said:

I would like to say that I appreciate the comments, especially from Dash 34 who seems to be very involved. Some observations, I can't see  PHRF BC and PHRF NW  ever coming together again under one roof and why should they? If we've come to agreement on  sail measurements why can't we come to agreement on basic boat handicap? I don't know how many handicaps are appealed each year for PHRF BC but checking the minutes for PHRF NW there have only been one or sometimes two per year going back to the Big Boat fiasco. So, why should this be such a hurdle? If people are so unhappy with PHRF and their rating why aren't there more appeals? One of the things PHRF holds up over fixed measurement systems is that if you feel you're being cheated, you can appeal! Final thought, is PHRF the average guys handicap? PHRF has been losing members at a pretty alarming rate. I've looked at the  PHRF NW roster and there are less than 450 current members. I realize that will increase a bit as we get closer to spring but that's a big decline from just a couple of years ago. So where have all these boats gone? I can account for a few of them. So far in the first two races of the Southern Sound Series (Tacoma Vashon and Duwamish Head) they've had 55 PHRF boats enter and 29 Commodore flying sail and non flying sail  boats. Pretty big percentage. Is it time for PHRF to restructure and possibly start  giving old age sail allowances?

It's a lot easier to ask questions than to find answers but at this moment I'm more interested in talking boat politics than the other kind.

Moe

PHRF membership numbers are indeed nominally diminished if you look at the roster now. Annual dues were just sent, and if past trends are reflected we will be close to historical numbers by midsummer. Frankly, club racing itself is somewhat challenged, but I remain convinced that this is not exclusively the "fault" of PHRF-NW per se. ,

 

At CYC Seattle we are experiencing significant growth in keelboat OD racing ( J-105, J-80, etc.) which is effectively replacing handicap racing in some regards. Additionally, we have seen a trend to more larger boats, which "consume" more crew, who otherwise would have been racing other, likely smaller, boats.

The reality is, racing is evolving, but not dying. It is critical we embrace ALL these changes and work with one another to enhance this great game we all love.  

Respectfully,

M

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I'm new to the Seattle area and racing in general having cruised in many places on the east coast having no sizable sailing community to race with.  I don't have any background in the drama but I can tell you about my experience as a skipper new to the Pacific Northwest and racing in general. 

As per mentioned by Kurt on Sailish.com PHRF-NW gave us an opportunity to get started racing.  The handicapper made easy work of providing us with a rating, was professional, and has been a no fuss process. The idea of appealing ratings for ourselves or others hadn't crossed our thoughts as we still have so much to learn I don't feel like as a team we are driving the boat to it's rating anyways.  Secondly having participated as crew in ORC races such as the Van Isle 360 I can say that I'm very excited to get our Club ORC certificate for 2018.  I like the measurement system, the differences in weather ratings, and the infrastructure provided by ORC in searching other vessels internationally and reviewing in detail their ratings.  Amongst my friendly competitors that I've had the joy to meet there seems to be a similar push to go to an ORC rating as all the competitors felt fairer about the rating system.

It does take a little more time to gather up your ORC rating but it's also a great way to get to know your boat.  While all of our major events (Swiftsure, Van Isle) have ORC divisions I'm excited to see the day when the club races can utilize ORC for those boats that have elected to race it alongside PHRF ratings.

There is one major drawback for the ORC ratings system and that is the difficulty in getting a rating for older vessels in the fleet.  Speaking with a friend in Canada he was worried that some beautiful wooden vessels would have a very difficult time getting a Club ORC certificate.

As a final note, despite some acrimony described here, I have found the PNW, BC, and Vancouver Island sailing community to be incredibly welcoming and supportive.  I'm ecstatic over the clubs, regattas, and people.

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12 hours ago, masterpiecetheater said:

As a final note, despite some acrimony described here, I have found the PNW, BC, and Vancouver Island sailing community to be incredibly welcoming and supportive.  I'm ecstatic over the clubs, regattas, and people.

I think the acrimony is over - new people are taking over the management of both organizations and are bringing a fresh perspective to the situation, and it is now hard to find people who bear the grudges from the past.  From personal experience things are much better than they were even ten years ago, when just a mention of merging NW and BC in any way, shape or form would get some people apoplectic.  

IMHO, there are just a few roadblocks left to clear, and we will finally get where we, and PHRF racing in the NW/BC, need to go - ratings consolidation.  The racers want it, the handicappers (mostly, as far as I can tell) support it, we just need all the system managers to want it too and find solutions for a few logistics problems.  I think ratings consolidation is inevitable, but not everyone realizes this yet.

Ten years ago I pushed for ratings reciprocity and was branded a heretic.  Today we have almost full reciprocity, at least here on the Island.  Sometimes you just have to be patient.

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12 hours ago, masterpiecetheater said:

I'm new to the Seattle area and racing in general having cruised in many places on the east coast having no sizable sailing community to race with.  I don't have any background in the drama but I can tell you about my experience as a skipper new to the Pacific Northwest and racing in general. 

As per mentioned by Kurt on Sailish.com PHRF-NW gave us an opportunity to get started racing.  The handicapper made easy work of providing us with a rating, was professional, and has been a no fuss process. The idea of appealing ratings for ourselves or others hadn't crossed our thoughts as we still have so much to learn I don't feel like as a team we are driving the boat to it's rating anyways.  Secondly having participated as crew in ORC races such as the Van Isle 360 I can say that I'm very excited to get our Club ORC certificate for 2018.  I like the measurement system, the differences in weather ratings, and the infrastructure provided by ORC in searching other vessels internationally and reviewing in detail their ratings.  Amongst my friendly competitors that I've had the joy to meet there seems to be a similar push to go to an ORC rating as all the competitors felt fairer about the rating system.

It does take a little more time to gather up your ORC rating but it's also a great way to get to know your boat.  While all of our major events (Swiftsure, Van Isle) have ORC divisions I'm excited to see the day when the club races can utilize ORC for those boats that have elected to race it alongside PHRF ratings.

There is one major drawback for the ORC ratings system and that is the difficulty in getting a rating for older vessels in the fleet.  Speaking with a friend in Canada he was worried that some beautiful wooden vessels would have a very difficult time getting a Club ORC certificate.

As a final note, despite some acrimony described here, I have found the PNW, BC, and Vancouver Island sailing community to be incredibly welcoming and supportive.  I'm ecstatic over the clubs, regattas, and people.

 

13 hours ago, Matthew Wood said:

All,

Most, if not all of you, know that I am the current PHRF-NW handicapper for CYC Seattle, and have been for the last 17 years. I am tracking this conversation, and have long experience/knowledge in both the BC Sailing and PHRF-NW circumstances. I stand firmly, and personally, committed, to moving the PHRF experience forward. 

E63sccb, please PM me directly. Indeed, I would like to know what your concern(s) are, and how/what I can personally do to address your concerns. No promises, but I will do what I can. It is troubling to hear people state that "NW PHRF is the sole reason " you reason you stopped racing in the NW. If there is ANYTHING I can do to ( practically ) address your concerns ( and, for that matter, anyone else who has similar concerns ) I will.

PHRF has challenges, and also successes. The model is always in flux, but has, and continues to be, serve many hundreds of owners and dozens of clubs, well. The process is based on well-intended volunteers, who's intent is to provide fair ratings and service to members. 

I urge any, and all, concerned members to reach out to me on PM if you have specific concerns, suggestions, or needs, and I will act accordingly. 

Thank you.

M

 

My compliments to my friend Matt Wood. He works hard to make PHRF work for the Northwest. I'd like to see PHRF thrive by playing to its strengths. Masterpiece's tale could be a model. PHRF served him well, but as he/she gets into it a little deeper and more seriously there's the option of ORC. The two systems can strengthen each other. There's a sizable number of sailors for whom PHRF doesn't, and won't, work. There's an even greater number of sailors for whom PHRF serves well, especially if we take away the pressure of the most serious racers. Yeah, it splits the fleet, but that might help it grow. Unlike Matt, I foresee ongoing participation issues unless we do something. As I've laid out in my sailish posts, handicapping is just part of the picture.

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FYI The mistake I made citing the costs of getting an ORC certificate because I was going on info from earlier last year. The cost has gone up now that it's going through US Sailing. I hope that means US Sailing is going to do more to support ORC racing.

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Thanks Kurt.  I don't mind the mistake, it just made me switch from "I'll sign up now!" to "I'll wait to see when the system is in use".  

Do you know what races are looking at Club ORC classes in 2018?

 

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SYC and CYC have scored races last year in ORC.  It is based on interest for a class, IRC can be scored also. 

There also is a ORC scoring seminar on Jan 27 at SYC.  Details:

Ian Lloyd of ORC Canada will lead a two-hour interactive workshop on ORC scoring and the ORC Scorer Software including:
• Importing of boat's performance files

• Race set up
• Scoring options including Time on Time, Time on Distance and Performance Curve scoring
• Exporting results and scratch sheets.
Who should attend? 
• Race Officers
• Boat Owners
• Racers
Participants should download the ORC Scorer software to their (Windows X) laptop in advance of the workshop.

When? Saturday January 27, 2018 from 2 - 4 p.m.
Where? Seattle Yacht Club
To register call the Seattle Yacht Club (206-325-1000) 

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6 minutes ago, nwsailboat said:

SYC and CYC have scored races last year in ORC.  It is based on interest for a class, IRC can be scored also. 

There also is a ORC scoring seminar on Jan 27 at SYC.  Details:

Ian Lloyd of ORC Canada will lead a two-hour interactive workshop on ORC scoring and the ORC Scorer Software including:
• Importing of boat's performance files

• Race set up
• Scoring options including Time on Time, Time on Distance and Performance Curve scoring
• Exporting results and scratch sheets.
Who should attend? 
• Race Officers
• Boat Owners
• Racers
Participants should download the ORC Scorer software to their (Windows X) laptop in advance of the workshop.

When? Saturday January 27, 2018 from 2 - 4 p.m.
Where? Seattle Yacht Club
To register call the Seattle Yacht Club (206-325-1000) 

That sounds good. Scoring was a pretty big issue when we were racing IMS back in the early 90s. 

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34 minutes ago, Kelgato said:

That sounds good. Scoring was a pretty big issue when we were racing IMS back in the early 90s. 

IMS scoring was totally screwed up with boats reporting observed wind at various points around the course and reverse-engineering a wind for each leg or the whole race.  What a joke, as boats would call in North at 5 knots or South at 15 knots a half-mile apart.  Which is perfectly possible on Puget Sound, actually.  But a joke as a handicapping methodology.

ORC is open to similar problems if the RC makes the wrong choice about scoring methodology.  The Van Isle race attempted to use an ORC VPP-program-based imputed wind calculation; calculating wind speed based on how quickly boats finished each leg.  It was NOT well received by the competitors.  Just because you can do something mathematically, doesn't mean you should.

ORC handicaps for general purpose and for low/medium/high wind ranges in general seem reasonable, however.

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All the major races will offer ORC again this year.  I would expect to see ORC at Center Sound Series, Tri-Island Series, Swiftsure and Grand Prix, with a possibility of ORC at other races.

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1 hour ago, Left Shift said:

IMS scoring was totally screwed up with boats reporting observed wind at various points around the course and reverse-engineering a wind for each leg or the whole race.  What a joke, as boats would call in North at 5 knots or South at 15 knots a half-mile apart.  Which is perfectly possible on Puget Sound, actually.  But a joke as a handicapping methodology.

ORC is open to similar problems if the RC makes the wrong choice about scoring methodology.  The Van Isle race attempted to use an ORC VPP-program-based imputed wind calculation; calculating wind speed based on how quickly boats finished each leg.  It was NOT well received by the competitors.  Just because you can do something mathematically, doesn't mean you should.

ORC handicaps for general purpose and for low/medium/high wind ranges in general seem reasonable, however.

You mean, race committees shouldn't get one of these?

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161121090726.htm

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On the US Sailing support side, there are two people in the Seattle area being trained as measurers for any of the measurement rules (ORC, IRC, ORR). 

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1 hour ago, Left Shift said:

IMS scoring was totally screwed up with boats reporting observed wind at various points around the course and reverse-engineering a wind for each leg or the whole race.  What a joke, as boats would call in North at 5 knots or South at 15 knots a half-mile apart.  Which is perfectly possible on Puget Sound, actually.  But a joke as a handicapping methodology.

ORC is open to similar problems if the RC makes the wrong choice about scoring methodology.  The Van Isle race attempted to use an ORC VPP-program-based imputed wind calculation; calculating wind speed based on how quickly boats finished each leg.  It was NOT well received by the competitors.  Just because you can do something mathematically, doesn't mean you should.

ORC handicaps for general purpose and for low/medium/high wind ranges in general seem reasonable, however.

I don't know how ORC scoring has developed over the last 30 years but looking at my new ORC certificate, it looks the same as it did 30 years ago. Without hearing what's new my immediate thought is the same as it was then. You have a very sophisticated VPP based on wind speed and angle yet you're trying to give boats a one number handicap on a variable wind angle and wind speed course. Did not make sense to me and unless it has changed, it doesn't make sense now.

In reference to your first point, in essence that is what was done so that your whole rating was used, but, only it was done in a very systematic way. All major point to point races in the sound were broken down into segments. Each boat was given a work sheet with those segments and were required to fill them in as they completed each segment. They would consist of wind speed and wind angle. At the end of the race each boat would hand in their completed sheet to the IMS scorekeeper (Club scorers were not yet capable of running this system). The high and low were thrown out. The rest of the information was entered into the scoring program which resulted in the average wind speed and wind angle for each leg and that was used for scoring. It was really interesting how close most of the work sheets were and that was from a time when very few boats had true wind instruments. Sounds complicated but really worked very well. You then had a very accurate use of you handicap certificate. At that time there was quite a verity of boat sizes but all similar types. No one boat dominated the IMS races at that time.

Scoring to me is a big issue. Think about it. Would you want the Race Committee for the Winter Vashon (or any other point to point race), sitting on the deck of the Tacoma Yacht Club or on the pier in Des Moines determining the average wind speed and wind angle for the course.

I think IMS was the fairest system that I have raced under.

 

Moe

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3 hours ago, Kelgato said:

I don't know how ORC scoring has developed over the last 30 years but looking at my new ORC certificate, it looks the same as it did 30 years ago. Without hearing what's new my immediate thought is the same as it was then. You have a very sophisticated VPP based on wind speed and angle yet you're trying to give boats a one number handicap on a variable wind angle and wind speed course. Did not make sense to me and unless it has changed, it doesn't make sense now.

Have been following this thread with interest. Kelgato and others are (nearly) correct: the ORC system resembles IMS from the days of yore. The principles are the same: measure a boat and use the data to have a VPP grind out a matrix of values that predicts the boat's performance and use full transparency to reveal the Rule, the VPP formulations, the certificates, the data, and the scoring models. After taking input from the users at the AGM in November, this year's version has been published earlier this week online at www.orc.org.

What's different is that the tools the ORC rule makers have are as good or better than what the designers had 15-20 years ago, and in fact the Technical Committee of ORC is composed of the same designers that would try to fool the Rule by creating cheater designs...yet none do, and the rule therefore is in balance between working for older boats and newer boats too without any strong type forming.

The choices of which scoring model to use is entirely up to the race managers, and it sounds like Ian Lloyd will discuss this at SYC on 27 January...a similar session is being held coincidently the same day on the East Coast at Annapolis YC. Many find the Triple Number solution a good compromise, and this seems to get the most traction for W/L races, and for anything else the Coastal Ratings can work if the race managers are happy with the percentage scoring mix used in this model (circular random wind angles). If not, using the ORC Scorer software a custom mix can be devised...they key is that you reveal what this mix is so people know.

On PHRF vs ORC, its good to see that some recognize the true role of PHRF as being for the entry-level racer only. Those that are better at the game should use a measurement-based system, and has been observed, there may be little or no difference in the results but they will be closer, more consistent and more fair using an objective system. Its too bad a leadership role is not taken by the National Authority in this matter, as it would really help give needed guidance to race organizers everywhere.

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Not sure if this discussion is still active?  It doesn't seem that anything much came of Kurt's polling?  My comments regarding handicapping...

ORC: Appears to be some mix of empirical modeling and CFD for the hull/keel drag and lift.  It has black-box appeal, but keep in mind it will fail in some applications.  I'm certain they have ground-truthed their modeling on some boats, but the further you are from from the normal racing boat, the worse the model will likely be.  Do you think they're going to run a CFD model on your CAL 34-1 hull?  For $100?  Do they have accurate data??  Please correct me if I am wrong.  The polar data is certainly enticing.  You can review a number of old ORC polars here.  Getting an ORC certificate will be a hurdle for some.  ORC requires a measurement certificate for the sails you are using.  This means you will need to take the sails to someone else for measurement, unless a certificate came with your sails.  I attempted to point out to some ORC officials that cheaters will cheat, and in club racing it's as simple as flying different sails.  I don't know who would arbitrate cheating, ORC doesn't appear to have a very big footprint.  However, it is kind of a pain in the butt for all of us busy people to be dragging our sails off to some loft and paying to have them measured.  We are adults, and I for one still have some faith in the honor system.  Finally, I suspect that ORC will likely deflect angst between yacht owners to criticism of race committees.  This because the RC has to choose a wind condition to score the race with, in an area that has notoriously fluky conditions... brace yourself RC.

PHRF: "Observed performance" with simple empirical models to account for changes in sail area.  I am not steeped in the history of PHRF-NW.  I have had some very good interactions with Matt Wood and others involved.  I get the sense that the issues with PHRF revolve around the "observed" part of it, and the baggage/history of how those observations have been both introduced and handled.  People are people after all.  I think this system can work very well when boats have similar ratings and are of similar design.  The problem lately has to do with low participation and the resulting spread of ratings within a class break, which we all know doesn't work well.  I think this system could be made to work better if a documented, unbiased method of observation/whining were introduced (more results, less conjecture), to at least take a crack at assuaging individuals who harbor longstanding gripes.  Second, for the purpose of bring more people in, I would advocate for only giving ratings for the manufacturer's original sail plans.  I'm sure I'll get some crap for this, but the empirical models don't really work all that well, and are worse the farther a boat gets from the norm.  I'm an engineer and I enjoy the puzzle of making a boat go faster, but boat/sail plan design isn't really a part of becoming a better sailor.  I think this one-design for the masses would go far in eliminating the minor arms race that is "dialing" a boat in for PHRF.  It may also allow statistics to replace the whining in what is a random fleet where at least differences in the same design of boat could be minimized.

I am not a proponent of using two handicap systems.  Thinning the fleet out is worse for everyone.

 

 

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A101 - So the survey said (summarizing) quite a few people are unhappy with PHRF and vocal about it, some are happy, and a fair number are in between. There was a definite interest in ORC. I'm told the survey got the attention from PHRF-NW, but to my knowledge they have not responded directly to any of the criticisms. I've had good casual interactions with Matt Wood. One of the people involved with PHRF recognized my name and said "oh, you're the shit-stirer." Hey, that's a title I'm proud of. There's a lot of shit out there that needs to be stirred.

The survey was to get people thinking about ways to upgrade the sport in the PNW and plant some ideas. (Not just handicapping - there's a lot more to it than that) For now, the racers that remain seem satisfied with the status quo. Center Sound numbers were incrementally higher. It'll be interesting to see the participation numbers for weekend round the buoys regattas and weeknight racing. I'm afraid there's no momentum for change - yet. 

I get the concerns about splitting the fleet, but I feel that it needs to be split, between the serious racers and less serious racers, and that they'll naturally gravitate toward ORC (or IRC or other measurement system) and PHRF respectively. Then we might have appropriate landing places for the serious and less serious, and have greater participation overall. For now, however, the seeds are in the ground but have not yet germinated.

Looking ahead - there's an incredible group of high school sailors in the PNW, and my guess is that if they want to move to big boats as they get older, they'll be a force for good change, though we may not know what that looks like at this point.

I'll keep the discussion going on sailish.com so non-anarchists and non-Facebookers can participate as well.

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1 hour ago, kurthoehne said:

 

Looking ahead - there's an incredible group of high school sailors in the PNW, and my guess is that if they want to move to big boats as they get older, they'll be a force for good change, though we may not know what that looks like at this point.

 

 

Yes, there have been extremely talented sailors over the last few graduating classes. The problem here is that many adult owners and crew tend to be incredibly derisive of the skills that these youth sailors have. Just because someone needs to be taught how to use a winch properly does not mean they don't know how to trim a sail. 

I was incredibly lucky in that I was able to be involved in both flights of PNW sailing, but not all kids have a neighbor who has been inviting them out on Wednesday night races since they were 12. 

I would love to see something like the J105 Young American program on the east coast that is skippered and crewed by youth sailors ( ages 15-18)

6 skilled high school sailor with a few hours of practice would give the local 105 fleet a scare. 

my 2cents as one of the only people in my peer group, who have bridged the gap between youth and keelboat sailing in the PNW. 

 

 

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37 minutes ago, ASP said:

The problem here is that many adult owners and crew tend to be incredibly derisive of the skills that these youth sailors have....

 

 

That is not my experience.  Over here on the island we have all our youth sailors on speed dial trying to get them to come sail with us.  I have nothing but praise for these kids, I have only had great experiences with them on my boat, and I would love to name names but I won't.  I don't think I have ever seen a youth sailor looking for a ride at a regatta not be taken on by a boat.  Maybe it is different in other places.

Just one example.  In RSI I had two young female 420 sailors (15/16-ish) on board.  We had a bit of an upwind race.  These two did every single tack, and we short tacked a few shores.  After a while I asked if they wanted a break.  Nope, "we're good" they said.  Later in the year the same two did all the tacks in a RTB regatta and we won our division after 15 years of trying.  They are welcome on my boat any time.

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On 1/11/2018 at 8:33 AM, oceaneer said:

Ok, I am confused on the backstory as to why in BC we have BC PHRF and NW PHRF??? 

Can someone straighten me out as why I have to pay/join both? And why we just dont have one.. 

Confused 

Oceaneer

Not to be a shit stirrer but it is much like the So Cal PHRF and the SD area not liking it and starting their own SD PHRF.

Except the SD PHRF Rating does not apply to SO Cal if you leave the SD area. So you may have to pay twice for a rating.

Some people just want to be in charge or they do not want to travel to the regional meetings.

PS: I have to drive for 3 to 4 hours through LA traffic to get to LB for a regional meeting every month. 2.5 of those hours are to go about 35 miles.
LA SUCKS

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10 hours ago, Meat Wad said:

Some people just want to be in charge or they do not want to travel to the regional meetings.

Sometimes those reasons apply. But in my general experience with non-profits, most schisms typically occur because (rightly or wrongly) a group of members consider that the original organization is chronically dysfunctional or non-responsive to their needs/wants.

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I don't race or rate

 

but drag racers have a dial a time system [self rated] and IF exceeded they LOST the race

call breaking out of your bracket

 

and as wind speed is a BIG factor I fail to see how one number can be fair in all wind speeds

another stray thought money matters

if J-xx class has a given rating based on older boats with older sails

and a guy shows up with a brand new boat with new sails he gets the same rating as the older boats ?

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7 hours ago, Svanen said:

Sometimes those reasons apply. But in my general experience with non-profits, most schisms typically occur because (rightly or wrongly) a group of members consider that the original organization is chronically dysfunctional or non-responsive to their needs/wants.

I agree. I am in arguments with SO Cal Regional over the Published Rules and the calculated results on your So Cal Cert. They do not JIVE.
And it's not like I do not have any experience in this sort of thing, given my past experience.

For you So Cal PHRF People take a look at the rules. http://www.phrfsocal.org/wp-content/uploads/Rules/lr.pdf 

  • First look at Section 7, page 9 and notice that all the max dimensions of your Sym And Asym kite measurements are referencing SPL and ISP.
  • Next go to appendix A 5.3 page 12 and notice everything is ISP and SPL in regards to your Sym and Asym spin.
  • Finally go to Appendix A 9.0 and see the Standard Sym Area. This is the only place that the I and J are referenced. Thus giving false data on the cert. But the equation in the database does a check for the J vs SPL but not the I vs ISP. Every boat that has an ISP longer than the I has a false SYM Spin area.
  • Additionally, I have argued that the Sym and Asym areas should display the MAXIMUM Areas Allowable based on the Max Dimensions allowed based on your boats measurements.

I argued that it is understood based on  Section 7 and App A 5.3 that it is understood that when referencing the Sym and Asym that the ISP and SPL are the dimensions determining the max dimensions and area of those sails.

Nope some old guy said No and I was overruled. Still waiting for some fix.

 

 

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7 hours ago, nota said:

and as wind speed is a BIG factor I fail to see how one number can be fair in all wind speeds

That is the single biggest issue with most rating systems. Unless you are rating very similar boats, a single number cannot be fair over a wide range of conditions and only a few systems adjust for wind speed (and if you wanted to be more fair you would have to adjust for sea state as well...)

Adjusting the rating based on conditions has its own challenges (especially as the race gets longer and the conditions more variable) but that's the only way there is any chance of a "single race" event being fair.

If you have a series of a bunch of races over the year it should mostly average out but you can still predict pretty accurately who's going to win a specific race based on the conditions that day.

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