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Supporting the IRC Shift


"IRC handicapping produces a single-number rating that doesn't try to be perfect—it tries to be useable."

The IRC rating rule for racer/cruisers is co-produced in Britain and France and has been adopted all over the world–nearly 6,000 certificates in 31 countries. For years, U.S. race organizers resisted the idea of using this single-number rating rule because PHRF was cheaper and locally administered, and because for more serious racing our rulemakers have been pursuing the Holy Grail—computerized boat measurements plugged into velocity prediction programs to score races on any course in any windstrength. But VPP rules favor certain types of boats, are thus far too complex for users, and although advocates are forging ahead to use VPP rules for several major races, most big races have been using the simpler, but often-flawed PHRF. At last, like a fast-arriving frontal system, the shift is on to use IRC. St. Francis YC took the plunge first at the 2004 Big Boat Series, and now Storm Trysail Club, New York YC, Annapolis YC, and others have joined them.   more...


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