Home > general update, handicap opens, handicap regattas, official news > Joint Statement from the RYA & RS Racing re RS100 PN

Joint Statement from the RYA & RS Racing re RS100 PN

The following joint statement is available to download as a PDF file in the documents section.

Please feel free to circulate to your sailing committees, fellow handicap fleet sailors and other interested parties.

The RS100 was launched in January 2010 with the option of having two different rigs.

These two rig options, whilst raced under the same hull will share branding, event infrastructure and training and support; however they are regarded as separate rig configurations with separate manufacturer’s recommended Portsmouth Numbers for handicap racing.

These are currently recommended by RS Sailing as follows:

RS100 10.2 – PN 1005
RS100 8.4 – PN 1014

The 2010/11 RYA Annual Yardstick Return (and Microsoft Excel format alternative) will contain box fields for both the RS100 10.2 and RS100 8.4.  This is to offer clubs the option to return a breakdown of the different rig configurations in their generic ‘RS100’ results.

Neither the 10.2 nor 8.4 features on the current (2010) Annual PN List. This will be updated in March 2011.

In August 2010 an initial Experimental Number (EN) was released for registered users of the RYA online returns system.  This EN was based on three individual race results from two coastal clubs from two boats.

This initial EN for the RS100 10.2 rig was a fair assessment based on the extremely limited data available to the RYA from only three races. The RYA, whilst recognising that the data on which the RS100 number was established was limited, are committed to the Experimental Number system which ultimately makes the whole Portsmouth Yardstick Scheme much more flexible in how it treats new classes such as the RS100. However, this flexibility comes with the caveat that it also requires clubs to use the new Experimental numbers appropriately and have confidence to adjust any number that the RYA publish if it does not provide fair racing for that club.

Experimental Numbers were introduced by the RYA in March 2010 with the purpose to increase the speed that a new, growing or developing class‘s PN can reach a higher level of statistical accuracy. An EN is different to Primary, Secondary or Recorded numbers in the fact that they are monitored by the Portsmouth Yardstick Group and adjusted throughout the year, dependant on the data received from clubs. Users of the RYA online returns system will have access to the latest published EN for each class and they are encouraged to factor-in any changes to the number they implement locally.

RS Sailing urge all RS100 owners to:

1)     Check that your club returns RS100 race results based on the correct rig configuration.  It is our duty to our class to ensure that our results count if we want the fairest, impartial PY recommendations from the RYA now and in the future.

2)     Secondly, try to encourage your club to adopt the RYA online returns system to give you a fairer handicap ongoing.  The RS100 is a new class and the handicap will fluctuate from the manufacturer’s recommendation.  It is in your interest to ensure that your club has access to the most up to date assessment the RYA can provide so they can attribute a suitable number locally.

For more information on the RYA Portsmouth Yardstick Scheme, guides on how to use it effectively at your club and further details of the RYA online returns system, please see:


Signed by:

Nick Peters, Executive Director, RS Racing
Bas Edmonds, Technical Manager, RYA

  1. M.Hobin
    26/08/2010 at 2:43 pm

    What a shame our national sporting body, a major manufacturer and the relevant class association seem unable to communicate with each other well in advance of holding ‘talks’ to resolve such basics as a preliminary PY.

  2. jwlbrace
    26/08/2010 at 5:34 pm

    That’s a tad harsh Mike, the RYA could only work with results from clubs, and RS needed to release something to get the process going… Classic chicken and egg.

    IMHO, the clear message I get from this is that we need to do everything we can to get more returns in so the RYA can give it a fairer assessment in time for the 2011 update. Three results is simply not enough, but what else were they supposed to do given the circumstances?

    It’s up to us now chaps….

  3. bert
    26/08/2010 at 8:02 pm

    Agree with TT there,But most of the clubs on the on line system will be the more open water larger clubs & this could “slew” the PY in it`s own way.
    Not a dig – just a likeyhood because small clubs like the one I sail at have just thrown out the abacus & therefore the PY would move to a lower then “reaility” for the first couple of years,But hopefully less then the orginial proposed drop.

    bert 131

    • jwlbrace
      26/08/2010 at 8:16 pm

      That’s possibly true Bert, but don’t forget the paper and excel returns due before 31st Nov will still count this year towards the 2011 update. This data far from irrelevant, therefore we should encourage clubs to return, even if they hand write them!

  4. Anonymous
    26/08/2010 at 9:17 pm

    publishing a number from just three races is crazy!

  5. M.Hobin
    27/08/2010 at 9:25 am

    “The RYA could only work with results from clubs”. Jimbo, that surely is the crux of the problem. “What else were they supposed to do under the circumstances?” As with any new design, liaise with the designer, manufacturer and class association (if one exists) and agree a TN based on collective experience, empirical evidence, judgement and above all common sense. That number ought then to be adhered to until such time as statistically valid data is available to justify change.

    • jwlbrace
      27/08/2010 at 10:14 am

      I’m sure going to struggle to argue with your logic there Mike… all I can do is offer the response I received when raising similar concerns myself with the RYA.

      The PY system is a product designed for clubs; not classes, not specific regattas and not for individuals. As a result, the RYA will only work with the data they receive from clubs, and clubs alone. Therefore it is clubs, not the RYA who are responsible for ensuring that the RS100 receives two ENs based on a quality selection of data.

      Now following this conclusion forward, clubs are nothing more than a collection of sailors… us! So let us influence our clubs to submit our data broken down by rig selection and submit as much data as possible. All we seek here is a fair assessment, if 990 is the real average for the 10.2, even the 8.4, then so be it, for those of us punting around puddles on tight reaches we know what ‘impact’ our results will have on the ‘average’…

      Time is running short- we need to move forward on this if we want progress. There’s little point overly analysing the historic data which has led to the current situation… I mean seriously, how much analysis does 3 results really require?

  6. bert
    27/08/2010 at 4:49 pm

    I wasn`t thinking that the paper & pen results were irrelevant in any way ( I am sure you knew that ) I was thinking that they are just slow to be “active” on the system because the more “normal” or “common” results would come from the little local clubs rather then the up to speed big open water jobbie`s with all the bells & whistles.


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