We sailed a bunch of RS Aero regattas in New England this year but we never got around to setting up a proper series in advance with rules on things like which regattas to count and how to generate a series score, so I thought I would make my own rules retrospectively and write a blog post on what it might have looked like if we had run a proper series.
There were six RS Aero regattas in New England in 2018. At least there were six events for which a regatta report and regatta results were posted on the official class website. I think two or three Aeros may have gone floating around on the Essex River one Saturday afternoon in August but if it’s not on the the official class website it never happened. And before someone asks me why I haven’t included the Ward Bell Memorial Regatta it’s because that was in NY State and last time I checked NY State is not in New England. (Hey, this is my blog and I make the rules here.)
So here are the six events in the Tillerman RS Aero New England Series 2018 along with the number of people who sailed in each one.
Massapoag YC Small Boat Regatta – 19
Wickford Regatta – 14
Newport Regatta – 9
Stonington Harbor YC Red Lobdell Memorial Regatta – 8
Massapoag YC Annual Regatta – 15
Bristol YC Quahog Regatta – 8
Thirty three different sailors sailed at least one event in the series, and four dedicated souls sailed all six events. If it were up to me I would reward those four sailors with free lifetime North American RS Aero Class membership for their dedication. But it’s not up to me, and I don’t have any cool RS Aero bumper stickers to hand out either, so they will just have be satisfied with being mentioned here… Andrew McConnell, Derek Stow, Jim Myers and Eric Aker.
Marc Jacobi, two times RS Aero 9 World Champion, won four of the regattas.
Madhavan Thirumulai, Marc’s training partner, won Newport.
Rob Scala, 2018 Force 5 North American Champion, won at Stonington.
So anyway, in the absence of any rules on how to score the series I thought I would do roughly what the English sailors do for their RS Aero circuits because everyone knows the English are best at everything to do with sailing. (Well, except for the America’s Cup… yet.)
Rule #1 – Low point scoring. Yes I know this gives an advantage to the people who do well at the smaller regattas but, for that reason, it also encourages people to sail the smaller regattas, which is a good thing.
Rule #2 – There are six regattas. You have to race three regattas to qualify. Competitors count their three best event scores to determine their overall series score.
Nine people raced in three regattas or more this year and qualified for the series. Here they are with their series scores in the right hand column.
And here are the race scores of the twenty four other sailors who raced one or two events,
One thing that was not entirely consistent across all the regattas, and which was not really fair to all the competitors, was how we scored the different rigs at each regatta.
To the best of my knowledge, at Newport, Wickford, and the two Massapaog YC regattas all the rigs raced together and were scored using Portsmouth Yardstick handicaps, which is our preferred method of scoring.
At the Lobdell Regatta the scores are raw finishing positions with no handicap adjustment. But everyone sailed 9 rigs that day except for Karen Binder who sailed a 7 rig. Karen would surely have been scored higher in the regatta standings if we had used PY handicaps. Sorry Karen.
And at the Quahog Regatta, the RC did not do handicap scoring but we did persuade them to let the 7 rigs start 30 seconds per lap before the 9 rigs (in every race except the first.) A bit rough and ready but it was probably a pretty good approximation to a fair pursuit race.
Whatever. Something to consider next year if we want a REAL New England Series.