Handicaps and race scoring

  1. Results of all WSBA cruiser races will be calculated using the RYA’s National Handicap for Cruisers (NHC) system, sail configurations to be used are unrestricted; that is, asymmetrics, spinnakers & code zeros’ are allowed. There will be no allowances for boat or crew configurations. NHC is a performance based handicap system. A boats handicap will be adjusted after every race. An adjustment in handicap number is not grounds for redress, this changes RRS Rule 62.
  2. NHC will be used for all championship points’ races. The 2018 starting values, calculated using the RYA approved software HALSail from the 2016 and 2017 seasons results and agreed by the Race Committee can be found in Handicaps.
  3. Boats which have already started in an NHC series will retain their current handicap status, regardless of the number of subsequent new entrants to the series. Any newly entered boats which have not previously competed with the current fleet will start on NHC base handicaps. Handicaps are however automatically re-aligned and this may affect all boats.
  4. Boats joining an NHC series will attain their proper handicap levels after a few races, and these can be significantly different from the base numbers. Base numbers are intended to be a starting point only.
  5. Whatever the starting values, by definition NHC handicaps change after every race, unless there are fewer than three finishers in a race.
  6. For the Friendship race all boats will race off the NHC base handicaps.
  7. For the Irish Sea Challenge, the handicaps will be set to the current club handicaps following the preceding Championship Series race.
  8. For the Maiden Marine Cup mini series and the Marina Cup mini series handicaps will be set to the current club handicaps following the preceding Championship Series race and run as fixed handicap series.
  9. The result of the Friendship, Irish Sea Challenge and mini series will not effect the club handicaps.
  10. The NHC calculation of results must run only on HALSail which is an RYA approved web-based application. A mathematical explanation of NHC can be found here: http://www.halsail.com/Home/NHCExplanation.
  11. A list of the RYA’s NHC base handicaps as used by HAL’s Race Results can be found at http://www.halsail.com/boattype.
  12. Starting NHC values have been determined by finishing NHC values from the previous season.
  13. All this information is subject to revision by the Race Committee.

Championship Table

The Championship will be scored on a Low Point Scoring system over the ten championship races, indicated in the Race Calendar with the post scripts SR1 through SR10. There will be 2 discards i.e. final championship points will be based on each competitors best eight results.

For each race the first place finisher will get one point, second two points, third three points, forth four points etc.

  • DNC (Did Not Compete) will attract number of competitors in the race + 2
  • DNS (Did Not Start) will attract number of competitors in the race + 1
  • RET (Retired) will attract number of competitors in the race + 1
  • DSQ (Disqualified) will attract number of competitors in the race + 2
  • The competitor with the lowest score, out of their best eight races, will be declared the winner of the championship. All Scoring will be done by the HALSail web-based application.

In addition “The Jack Dickson Trophy” will be awarded to the vessel with the lowest score that has not won a trophy during the season.

Conduct of races

All participating vessels must be WSBA members and must sign the WSBA pre-season disclaimer

WSBA races are governed by the 2017 – 2020 World Sailing Racing Rules of Sailing.

A pre-race brief will be held outside the marina facilities building before the start of each race. The brief will include:

  • Listing of participating vessels
  • Collection of entry fee
  • Course details
  • Target race start time
  • Lock out arrangements
  • Reminder of safety requirements
  • Working VHF channel for the race

The race buoys will be laid and recovered by volunteers if prevailing conditions allow. Otherwise volunteers from the race fleet will be sought on a rota basis to lay and recover buoys. This is often the bug-bare of organising the race and if crews are willing to race they must be willing to take a turn in handling buoys. The basis will be that vessels expected to finish the race early will lay the buoys and the slower vessels will recover buoys.

The race fleet should look to use the sea lock economically. I.e. get the whole race fleet out in as few locks as is reasonably practicable. This will help to consistently meet the agreed start time.

In the interests of meeting the agreed start time, skippers should proceed to the muster area on the start side of the start line as soon as possible after locking out.

The starting procedure

  • A voice signal on VHF at T-10 with a 5 second count down.
  • Observe radio silence after T-10.
  • Engines off by T-5
  • A voice signal on VHF at T-5 with a 5 second count down.
  • Start horn signal over VHF will be give if possible with a 5 second count down.

After the T-5 signal the race is totally self policing and penalties for rule infringements must be taken as required and declared. Normal racing rules of sailing will apply. All race timing is to be given from a GPS source in hrs; mins; secs. Skippers are responsible for taking and declaring their finish times in writing on the declaration form to the race officer ASAP after the race. All vessels must complete the course as described in the pre race brief to qualify for a result.

The start line in use is formed by a transit of the Haigh pit head winding and the Perch to the south of the harbour. A buoy will mark the seaward end of the start line, this is the OUTER LIMIT and is not necessarily on the transit line. All yachts must start and finish races by passing between this buoy and the Perch.

Protest Procedure

  1. Any boat involved in or witnessing an incident may protest.
  2. The word “PROTEST” must be hailed so that the protested boat is known to be aware of the protest, at the first reasonable opportunity. Due to the nature of racing at Whitehaven, VHF Ch72 may be used hail the protested boat.
  3. A RED flag must be hoisted at the first reasonable opportunity by the protesting boat. It must be flown for the remaining duration of the race. It must be a RED flag, ideally flag B, which is red with swallowtails. It cannot be something other than a flag such as some article of clothing. For safety reasons the red flag can be flown from the backstay/guardrails etc. This is to avoid the unnecessary risk someone going forward to hoist it from the signal halyard in bad weather.
  4. The purpose of the hail is to give the protested boat an opportunity to take a penalty or to record the incident to contest the protest later.
  5. Once ashore the protesting Skipper must, as soon as practicable, give written details of the protest to the OD. The publication of the results can be delayed for up to 2 hours after the last boat finishes provided the OD is aware that the protest is to be lodged, and has time to assemble a Protest Committee.
  6. You may have supporting witnesses, but you must not discuss the incident prior to the Protest Committee convening or try to influence witnesses in your favour.
  7. You must be respectful to committee members, especially if you know more about the rules than they do. They will be fellow sailors doing their best to be fair.
  8. The protest committee will listen to all parties and to any witnesses, and requests for redress. This will only be done if the process is followed correctly.
  9. The Protest Committee’s decision will be final.