Thanks for all your information and you kind explanations of ORRx. From the very source, ORR manipulates the data and change ratings this time spicifically for the Bermuda Race. Why did the Farr 40 get faster?
I have a lot of respect for those who try to fix an everwidening problem handicaping sailboats as they have changed from displacement hull, planning hulls, Asymetrical spinnakers and I am sure in the future Foiled hulls. ORR has chosen to let a computer compute ratings bassed on data placed in somebody's algorithm which places weights on specifice performance indicataors. College football tried to similar techniques to rank teams and was eventually dropped in favor of the human polls Computers and AI have come along way and are certainly an aid to our problems but IMHO you just cannot take the human element out of it which ORR does. Yes, one of the problems with PHRF was the human element. When you take out that element you loose the "savvy" humans have for doing things including holding the tiller.
Handicapping our sport is an impossible task regardless of the tool used. I have a lot of respect for Tom Berry and his team. They have really done an admireable job of the years. Were there problems, sure, Will we have problems with ORREZ sure. What happens when we find a problem under ORREZ? Do we change that boats rating? Do we say dont buy that boat to race? If so we are right back to where we were with PHRF. My biggest problem with ORREZ is the complexity with different wind ranges and race types. It takes some control out of the hands of the racers and places it with the RC. I see perpetual arguments between competitors and RC about how hard the wind blew. It could be light for the beginning of the race and pick up toward the end. A wind shift could make a WL a reach reach race. So now we have conversations at the club bar based around not only ratings, but RC committee variables. And just wait untill the foils show up.
Under PHRF everyone knew what boats work in light winds what boats worked in heavy winds, which ones were upwind boats and downwind boats. I think it evened out pretty well over the years. While ORR attempts to take that variation out, it has produce a highly complex rule that most local racers dont understand.
I really dont have any true evidence that numbers are wrong but just intituition and experience tells me that a J22 will win D class against a Wavelength 24 under ORREZ. Or a certain boat was docked 100 seconds mile under the new rules just doesnt seem right to me. Even you admit that the ratings are not 100% perfect. When we find a rating problem, what is the avenue to address it? Do we use humans to resolve the issue by changing the paramaters for that boats data.
Locally, I think we need a simple rule much like we had over the past years, with human input and add the computer input if you want. I want to be able to "read" the race course and not who I have to cover and who and can let split in real time. In reallity, I see "Offshore Handicapping" dead or dying as a form of racing, it just can be done equitablly. That's why we should all support one design as the best form of sailboat racing and leave "offshore" as a fun series with simple rules.
While we are in a GYA Offshore Challenge Cup thread, we can even look at that. When this cup started we all raced boats that had heads, motors, a galley of some type and the smaller ones were classified coastal cruisers. Today, we find Vipers, Melges 24s, J22s. Hardly what I would call offshore boats so we may have to redifine what the Challenge Cup is about. Let's make 4 one design classes out of it for grins.
Thanks for all your efforts in getting us ORREZ ready and let's give it a try. My prediction is that we will find that it is "just another rating rule" with inherent flaws as we have seen since the beginning of this whole handicapping game. Is it better, who knows, Is it more complex, for sure.
See you on the race course