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National Handicap for Cruisers

Printed From: Yachts and Yachting Online
Category: General
Forum Name: Race Management
Forum Discription: For race officers and competiors to discuss the topic
URL: http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=13531
Printed Date: 22 Jan 21 at 3:41pm
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Topic: National Handicap for Cruisers
Posted By: Sighmoon
Subject: National Handicap for Cruisers
Date Posted: 11 Feb 20 at 2:47pm
The opinion threads I've read about the RYA's NHC scheme seemed to be a bit negative but they also seemed to be very old (circa 2013).

How is it going now? Are clubs happy with it?

Did the doom and gloom fears materialise? People were saying it would be easy being able to game it, and were worried about a personal based handicap system penalising consistent good sailing.

What's the verdict? I'm pondering whether my timing app needs to be able to support it.



Replies:
Posted By: JimC
Date Posted: 11 Feb 20 at 11:15pm
It depends whether you see your timing app as also doing series results. NHC handicaps are basically just a TMF, like most other larger boat handicap systems. The difference is that the handicap is different for each race. If you're using external programs for scoring the series you just need to be able to import boats and the current handicap from whatever the scoring system is.


Posted By: Brass
Date Posted: 11 Feb 20 at 11:51pm
Pardon me for shortcutting, but is NHC an observed performance based system: speed index compared to benchmark boat, averaged over best 5 of last 6 races sort of thing?


Posted By: Sighmoon
Date Posted: 12 Feb 20 at 6:17am
Originally posted by JimC

It depends whether you see your timing app as also doing series results. NHC handicaps are basically just a TMF, like most other larger boat handicap systems. The difference is that the handicap is different for each race. If you're using external programs for scoring the series you just need to be able to import boats and the current handicap from whatever the scoring system is.
It does do series results.

Under NHC the app should make the handicap correction for each race. It's a lot of extra work so I just wanted to ascertain if the feeling was that it's worth doing and here to say. 

I personally like the idea of not being penalised for having baggy sails and carrying 45m of anchor chain and full tanks. I don't like the idea of anyone other than the best sailor winning though. 


Posted By: JimC
Date Posted: 12 Feb 20 at 12:30pm
Originally posted by Brass

Pardon me for shortcutting, but is NHC an observed performance based system: speed index compared to benchmark boat, averaged over best 5 of last 6 races sort of thing?

Sort of I think. I don't know as much about the internals as I ought to. Its a progressive system, where the handicap changes as the series progresses. The folk that designed it looked around the world at a lot of systems, but I think the Irish Echo system was one of the major influences. In practice its still largely a best boat wins system: when I tried dual scoring my club PYs results the order wasn't terribly different.
https://www.rya.org.uk/racing/Pages/nhc.aspx


Posted By: craiggo
Date Posted: 12 Feb 20 at 12:34pm
I'd be interested to know the take-up of NHC.
As suggested by the RYA we implemented dual scoring of NHC and PY(Byron). Our starting point was the Byron handicaps we had been using and for our main cruiser series we rolled the results so that the last race of the season was used to determine the starting point for the next season as suggested by the RYA and Sailwave. The results were interesting and overall tended to pull the outliers in but the same boats typically won the series just not quite as comprehensively.
My impression is that in recent years our club have stopped the dual scoring and are only scoring on Byron.
People weren't overly happy with the constantly changing numbers and what amounted to a personal handicap. Interestingly it was the back end of the fleet who seemed more vocal, feeling uneasy when they won a race when they felt they're skill level was considerably lower than others on the race course.
There were also those sailing OD boats like Impalas who wanted to be racing each other on the same numbers but NHC doesn't allow for that (or at least didn't when I was doing the results).

There is an acceptance that even within a class people are sailing different configurations and therefore a class based PY is perhaps not accurate. Also many don't want the cost of IRC, so Byron represents an acceptable compromise where for a donation you get a number based on your boats measurements and it's then fixed unless of course you change something

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