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National Handicap For Cruisers (NHC)

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blueboy View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote blueboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Mar 13 at 6:41am
Originally posted by JimC

NHC is basically intended for entry level racing for those not ready for IRC for one reason or another. In such racing crew ability is going to be vastly more important than handicap.


"Vastly more important". Not particularly true for yacht racing in a medium breeze. I gave up yacht racing in PY decades ago. Just a waste of time. Might as well toss a coin.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Apr 13 at 8:05pm
So if crew ability in leadmines is largely irrelevant, even with beginners, and the only thing that counts is your handicap - which is certainly what you seem to be implying, then why on earth does anyone bother racing them at all?

Mind you, I just had a look at a few OD result from the RTI race last year, and I note that in the Sigma 33s 13 finishers varied in elapsed time from 7:44 to 9:36 hours, and 20 Sigma 38s from 7:09 to 8:11, and that less than half the Sigma 38s had a better elapsed time than the best Sigma 33. Are you really sure that crew ability is not a lot more important than handicap? Is there really that much difference in pure boatspeed between boats of the same class?

Edited by JimC - 09 Apr 13 at 8:07pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RS400atC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Apr 13 at 1:13pm
If you run the new system on that data, handicap will become pretty important, with 'identical' yachts having 15% different handicaps.
Especially since the handicap goes with the yacht and not the skipper, helm or tides 'expert'.
We really must get the Sunsail fleet on this system....
 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote blueboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 12:07pm
Originally posted by JimC

Mind you, I just had a look at a few OD result from the RTI race last year


Full of once-a-year racers and corporate entertainment charters. Plenty of racers decline to play bump-a-boats in that crowd. The results are hardly representative of regatta sailing. If you are going to keep on commenting on keelboat sailing, maybe you ought to try some?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RYATechnical Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 4:10pm

All,

NHC is designed for club racing - it will not work for a single race. It is some thing that we are looking at as part of its future development - along with adding multihulls to the scheme.
 
We have a significant amount of boat data on which we have based the NHC Base List. Within this data it clearly shows that no two boats are the same - even in the one-design fleets are no two boats the same.
 
Personal Handicapping - from experience based on my email inbox and voicemail - can be an emotive subject. In the case of NHC I would argue that it is not "personal" but performance handicapping that we are applying. If we were talking about say the Laser (or Torch, take your pick), then it could be personal handicapping. But in cruisers, the personal element plays a role but so do a large variety of other factors.
 
There are a number of reasons as to why the RYA were forced to change systems. There are a number of reasons why we have taken some of the decisions we have done. I would like to conclude on the note that we are offering as many talks as possible on NHC - if you really want to know more about the scheme I would invite you to contact the Technical Department to have a talk arranged for a club near you.
 
Cheers,
 
Bas
Bas Edmonds
RYA Technical Manager
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RS400atC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 6:14pm
What clubs are actually using this system?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote craiggo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 8:51pm
Originally posted by RYATechnical

All,


NHC is designed for club racing - it will not work for a single race. It is some thing that we are looking at as part of its future development - along with adding multihulls to the scheme.

 

We have a significant amount of boat data on which we have based the NHC Base List. Within this data it clearly shows that no two boats are the same - even in the one-design fleets are no two boats the same.

 

Personal Handicapping - from experience based on my email inbox and voicemail - can be an emotive subject. In the case of NHC I would argue that it is not "personal" but performance handicapping that we are applying. If we were talking about say the Laser (or Torch, take your pick), then it could be personal handicapping. But in cruisers, the personal element plays a role but so do a large variety of other factors.

 

There are a number of reasons as to why the RYA were forced to change systems. There are a number of reasons why we have taken some of the decisions we have done. I would like to conclude on the note that we are offering as many talks as possible on NHC - if you really want to know more about the scheme I would invite you to contact the Technical Department to have a talk arranged for a club near you.

 

Cheers,

 

Bas


Sorry Bas but I disagree with some of your points, most notable of which is the personal handicapping.

I take the point that there is a lot of variation even within a particular model of cruiser, what with different prop configurations, different keel options, hi-tech sails, weight of boat due to fit-out, roller furling vs hanks or foil. Conventional vs assymetric spinnaker, however many small cruiser racing clubs thrive on two or three owners buying in to one particular model of a cruiser in order to get boat on boat racing. As an example, at our club over the last 10yrs we had a couple of lifting keel Sonatas, we then developed a small fleet of Jeanneau Sun 2000s, this then developed into a fleet of Jeanneau Sun 2500s, We have alongside this had a small fleet of Achilles 24, and recently we have a couple of highly competitive Impalas.
In each of these cases one of the prime reasons for buying these boats was to ensure that people had someone to race off scratch. You say that no two boats are the same, but when owners go out and buy a boat which has the exact same spec. then I and they expect to be able to sail off of the same handicap, and not have it adjusted based on their personal performance.
As a further example, in order to ensure that both our Impalas were equally matched one of the owners went and bought a new suit of sails to match the other owner so that they have identical boats, yet NHC will adjust these guys down very different values as they will not end up neck and neck on the water.

So what do we do, well you would have us believe that dual scoring is the way, but why?
Dual scoring means doubling up on prizes therefore clubs have an additional cost to administer NHC which some small clubs just wont stomach. The other thing is competitors will be confused regarding which trophy has the most clout, after all we are competitive and this is racing, not just taking part!

So I dont have a problem with the method of calculation in NHC but I do have an issue with the way it is applied. I believe that I should be able to specifiy that I want two or three boats to be scored as the same type of boat and then the rating changes based on the results of those two or three boats and not on an individual.

This then leads me to wonder why on earth have you over complicated this so much?
You have spent 4 or 5 years developing the PYS system which I think works very well for the dinghies, and you have now worked hard to establish a basic measurement scheme for cruisers which defines your base list and yet you have missed the obvious solution of simply using these two things to drive cruiser PY forward. Your base list is fine as a start point, then get the cruiser clubs to run PYS with all of their historic data and bingo you have a local handicap where it can be applied to a particular spec of each cruiser. If you look at my clubs PYS page you will see that there are several Moody 31s, one with bilge keels one with a fin, nicely seperated by config. We even have several versions of Sadler 25s depending on the rig.
Now in effect I have been looking into this method for 5yrs. We use Byron as a means to get a base number which as you know has been adopted by the clubs of the Bristol Channel, and I then enter all our results into PYS and year on year I can adjust the numbers appropriately. We have run our keenly contested Cruiser frostbite series on the two sets of numbers with Byron numbers being the official results, and the adjusted PYS numbers as a secondary scoring system. I suppose we are dual scroing but are not awarding prizes for the PYS results. They are simply there to allow us to investigate the merits of apply some local adjustment and perhaps moving away from rigidly using Byron as some owners are not convinced by the weight some measurements are given.

Now call me cynical but given that RORC are now promoting NHC I cant help but feel that the RYA have done a backroom deal with RORC to try and gradually move cruiser owners towards IRC. Otherwise why adopt numbers that look like IRC numbers? If cruiser owners want to race competitively on the South Coast then I dont think the fact that the numbers look different is going to stop them paying for an IRC certificate.

Sure the historic PY system failed to work for cruisers, but NHC in its current form is flawed.

If you want the opportunity to prove to me and our cruiser fleet otherwise, then feel free to PM me and arrange a talk at our club (Thornbury SC), we'd be very interested to hear what you have to say.

Paul
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RS400atC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 9:56pm
I think the explanation would be much better put formally on the web, rather than expounded on in a short evening talk at a club bar.

The maths of it all certainly needs to be explained formally and openly in writing.
See how difficult most people in our club find understanding the simple adding up and taking away involved in club accounts, I don't think people will take this in properly once the bar's been open 20 minutes.

I do not believe that most sailors want the personal handicap implied by this system.
Were they ever asked?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Aching Knees Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Apr 13 at 10:30pm
I agree that  it is not easy setting PY for the small number of returns for cruisers but normally a handicap can be sorted out that most parties can agree on, I know who I have to beat on the water and roughly how far apart we should be. 
Now we are going to use the NHC it will be a case of sandbagging for the 1st few races and working out the maths to come say 3rd until the big race , then get out the best sails.
Who wants to race like that?




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Post Options Post Options   Quote Helmit Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Apr 13 at 1:40pm
Even if the NHC works (which is doesn't) how do you now compete at other clubs.
 
MAJOR CONCERN
As you know In regatta races you always return to the base list.
But the base list shows a Sonata which is currently the fastest boat on our race course as now the slowest according to the RYA list?
The base list also shows a Sunfast 26 level rating with a beneteau 21.7?
It shows different rating for the 211 the 210 and the 21.7 when they are all identical.
It shows a Sunfast 32  nearly level rating with a Benetaeu 25.7 cruiser.
It shows a cruising lift keel jeanneau 35 being faster than a Jeanneau Sun Fast 32....and on and on
 
If we can see this, more clubs must also have the same problem.
Remember this is a National scheme and therefore must also be fair to those boats that do travel.
 
We have spent years getting the seperate clubs to join together in open meetings as a means to keep numbers up and get more people into sailing.
 
These events would be a mockery if we adopted the RYA's scheme.
All five clubs on Lake Windermere have rejected NHC.
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