What are we about ?
It’s all about having as fair a system as possible to even out the technical differences between yacht design so that in any race, the result achieved is due to how well the skipper and crew has coped with the weather conditions, the equipment and sails available and have applied their best skills and tactics to beat other boats over a given course. The result is achieved having applied a time correction factor (TCF) to the elapsed time.
Who designed the system?
The system has evolved over 40 years from about 1965 from what was an older established formula, which was superseded by the IOR rule.
That rule is now defunct. At first it was called the NECRA Rule (North East Coast Cruiser Racing association) and was redesigned and manipulated to find the best relationships between a changing fleet over this period.
It was essentially designed to provide a handicap/Rating system for family cruisers.
The rule at present is expressed mathematically and is the responsibility of the handicapper (a University academic ) who has been involved with it for over 30 years. One of its strengths is that the handicapper has also competitively sailed most of this time.
Who controls it ?
The administration team are representatives of all the participating clubs who wish to use the rule for club racing.
Each representative is called a club measurer. They form a measurer’s committee who meet regularly to discuss all aspects of the rule.
The handicapper reconciles the mathematics with the views of the measurer’s who all sail competitively and recognise when relationships between yachts can go wrong.
How does it work ?
Essentially it is meant to be a self certificated system and as such has to be as simple as possible.
Yacht owners simply fill in a form which is self explanatory with diagrams and hand it to their club measurer. Any difficulties they might experience will be resolved by the measurer.
He/she takes the information from the form, opens up the web site section using their password and inputs the information. A rating is calculated by the system and a Certificated printed out. The certificate is stamped and issued to the owner.
Rating trials (What will happen if……)
Some owners are interested to see what will be the effect to their rating (TCF) should they change some elements of their boat. For example, a bigger spinnaker, a different headsail. What happens if they add or reduce weight, trim changes etc?
Most measurer’s are prepared to, when convenient, to sit down with the owner and test these changes to help in optimising the rating. Simply talk to your measurer.
How much does it cost ?
Nothing ! This is a service provided by volunteers who give up their time willingly to ensure that club racing can be enjoyed by all on as fair a basis as possible.
Who can use it ?
Any participating club, member or regatta / sailing organisation who request its use.