High tech handicapping

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High tech handicapping

Post by chris » Tue Jan 02, 2018 3:21 pm

Under ‘NEWS’ on the sail racer website is an article about GPS Dynamic handicapping, which has a method for working out handicaps that take into account the specific conditions of that race. It is an interesting article to read and may give food for thought.
Any comments?

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Re: High tech handicapping

Post by davidh » Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:02 pm


In case you missed it I had been looking into this at length - and have enjoyed a lot of interaction with the team at SailRacer who are getting very, very clever at this sort of thing. Is it pertinent to the CVRDA though.....no, I don't think it is but some years (or even many years) downstream it may be.

However, better PY 'management' is and ought to be right up there on our agendas! The MR classics are making a total dogs breakfast of the whole topic, but that is not to say that this is because the issue is too big or complex. We came up with some far more intuitive numbers for the Miles James woodie revival without too much difficulty and now that I've seen these numbers at work I think they're on the right path and would be worth developing (if the whole revival thing is going to flourish). The same approach gave some useful numbers for classic 505s, only for the class to decide that mixing carbon and oldies was okay and guess what - there is only so much you can ask the PY system to do. My guess is that the next class to meet this issue will be the low rider classic Moths; as much later, 'tricked up' boats with camber rigs start appearing, keeping a level playing field with the Skols, Shelleys, the mystery minty green moth, even the earliest Magnums will be a challenge for whoever works out the numbers.

Currently the CVRDA are still tied to the 2 digit PY baseline - I'm not going to question if this is a good or a bad thing, that is for others. But I would respectfully suggest that whilst we're still positioned as such, doing anything that is going to be a leap forward in complexity is probably a step too far to fast. Far better to put any new effort into sharpening up what we've got now rather than look at what is still right at the cutting edge of PY thinking.

Just in case you missed it - the link to my recent thoughts on PYs...
http://www.yachtsandyachting.com/news/1 ... t-a-number

David H

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Re: High tech handicapping

Post by PeterV » Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:01 pm

I think we should fit Pat with a GPS tracker and base Sandy's handiccap on the results.

The article makes some statements I'm not sure are true. Unless the class has seen some significant development I don't agree there is so much difference between an old boat and a newer one. Look at a Firefly, Enterprise or Wayfarerer for example, where very old boats X compete very equally with newer ones when well prepared and sailed. There's a strong perception that older boats are slower because so many old boats have poorly finished hulls and foils, inefficient controls and poor sails. If these are sorted the differences are much smaller. Where there are differences is when there's step changes in technology. With the Finns it's the rigs, and to a lesser extent the hulls. This drives the distinction between a Classic, with an alloy/ Dacron rig and a Clasics with carbon which has a modern carbon/Mylar rig. The Devoti hull outclassed all previous hulls so is a modern boat. Appropriate handicaps seem to be 1071 classics and 1060 for classics with carbon, which is halfway to a modern handicap.

For each class the distinction between old and new will be unique, for Merlins it's. The hull design development, for Solos, Phantoms and Scorpions it will be the adoption of epoxy foam construction, for the Supernova it's the comprehensive weight reduction and rig change that outclassed all previous boats.

As for the 'modes', don't we just accept it. I don't expect to beat a Moth at a small lake in light winds, but I wouldn't expect the handicap to adjust so I could.
Finn K197 & GBR564

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