Dangit! You gotta tee me up to be informative!
Sailing is no more (or less) of an arms race now than it ever was. Everyone knows new sails are fast, that's a universal law of sailboat racing. The point of switching from a Genoa to a blade is NOT to chase some ratings advantage, it's for ease of sail handling and more enjoyable sailing. This became a reasonable option because ORR-Ez can rate a blade fairly in all conditions, something PHRF does not do. By design, PHRF is type-forming towards 155% LP Genoas and by comparison a blade will never get enough of a rating credit to be doable. If anything, it's PHRF that forces you to pay for more sailcloth!