Topic : Winter Warmer - Datchet Sailing Club

Anyone consideering doing the Winter warmer at Datchet Sailing Club in Feb (four week ends). Or any other short winter series in this area.

Posted: 11/12/2008 22:11:54
By: ?
If you are thinking about winter series in or around London, there's also: 

Tamesis Club Winter Travellers Series:

• When: Sunday 4th January to Sunday 29th March 2009
• No. of races: 26 (2 per Sunday)
• Race Times: 10.30am and 11.15am
• Entry fee: £80 per boat and two crew (includes mooring fee and temporary membership of club from January to March)

Posted: 12/12/2008 07:59:48
By: ChrisB (3062)
I've tried to list most of them here.

Posted: 12/12/2008 10:42:33
By: Mags
I am sure you would be more than welcome to join the ever growing Merlin fleet at Wembley, great racing on the Welsh Harp

Posted: 15/12/2008 11:20:28
By: Ian
Stuart Gurney is Sailing his Winder at Island Barn (Molesey) winter series. The only Merlin at the moment. The only Merlin at the moment, I'd take mine down if any wants to crew me ( I have my Laser there at the moment). They have a Jan-Mar Winter membership.

Posted: 15/12/2008 11:48:07
By: Alan F
Good turn out of Merlins at the Snowflake series see link, more welcome Iam sure

Posted: 15/12/2008 13:33:15
By: Merlins and more Merlins

Posted: 15/12/2008 13:55:42
By: Alan F
Snowflake Merlin PY 1014 ?

Posted: 15/12/2008 16:36:07
By: jeremy C
Looking at the results, the Merlins still seem to dominate the top end of the results, perhaps they should try an even lower number.

Shame we haven't got the actual times on the results sheets and then we could play some what 'what if' scenarios. For instance an interesting calculation would we 'what is the lowest number that could be used to keep the top two in the same position'.

It will be interesting to see how the new dymanic data driven PY calculations change the numbers more rapidly than they do today.

My prediction is that it will make a difference and the Merlin number will drop quite rapidly (or some others will increase).

Will that be a problem for the class? I doubt it, no one buys a Merlin to win a handicap race - even events like the snowflake are, from teh Merlin sailor perspective, a Merlin fleet race with some other boats joining in!

Posted: 15/12/2008 18:34:33
By: Alan F
Alan, If you scroll down from the results sheet all the times are listed on the seperate race results. You will notice though that not all the merlins are on the same PY for some reason. Pat and Jilly appear to be on 1028 some are on 1024 the rest 1014.

Anyone shed some light on that?

Posted: 15/12/2008 19:00:25
By: Jez3550
Thanks, time for the spreadsheet.

The 1024 is the +10 for old Merlins.

I can't see the 1028 you refer to.

Posted: 15/12/2008 19:42:47
By: Alan F
CYC adjust the handicaps based on age of boat, as per the MROA recommendation.

Posted: 15/12/2008 19:49:06
By: Mags
ok. some what if scenarios

If the PY number for a Merlin was 1000, only one race (R6) in 8 would the first or second place Merlin be knocked off their position. In that one race the MR handicap would have needed to be 1009 to tie first with an RS 400.

In all the other 7 races, with the Merlin handicap set accordingly would have seen the top two Merlin retain their positions
(subject to cut and paste errors etc)
R1 - 975
R2 - 965
R3 - 948
R4 - 992
R5 - 981
R6 - 1009
R7 - 950
R8 - 890

I am not sure of the statistical relevance of an average is here - but that is an average of a staggering 964.

Posted: 15/12/2008 20:37:43
By: Alan F
That's why Shoreham race off 982.

I think the current national PY is 1018? My guess is as Merlins win every year, CYC decided to drop it a bit this year....

Posted: 15/12/2008 21:07:41
By: Ross
The way I understand the PY system works today, unless CLUBS adjust the PY, no adjustment happens.

If one club (shoreham) submit a return for 982, and everyone else submits 1018 (i.e. no change), lets say 20 clubs, averaging effect means = new PY of 1016 - the next year the same thing happens = PY 1014, year after year - it would take over 18 years to get close to a proper PY for the Merlin.

Thats why the PY system doesn't work today and has been re-engineered for 2009.

Posted: 15/12/2008 21:37:32
By: Alan F
It would appear it has been changed back!! I am not going mad really!!

Posted: 15/12/2008 21:40:33
By: Jez3550
Alan, by my rough calculations a PY of sub 1000 would put me roughly last in every race!! Great, lets keep tyhis quiet shall we.

Posted: 15/12/2008 21:55:23
By: Jez3550
This is where Roger G in his 200 would be an interesting benchmark. Accounting for CSF is quite difficult.

Posted: 15/12/2008 22:06:30
By: Chris M

were you just going for the sympathy vote, or tricking me into doing the calculations.

Anyway I did them for you, PY of 1000 would not have changed your position in any race.

Posted: 15/12/2008 22:17:45
By: Alan F
Well, I think that between the top of the fleet and the bottom (sorry Jez) there being no significant changes in position at a PY of 1000, says a lot about the boat, on that particulat peice of water, in those particular conditions, rather than CSF.

Posted: 15/12/2008 22:19:56
By: Alan F
Not necesserily. The standard in the merlin fleet is very high compared to most fleets, which is evident when sailors from this class go to other champs.

While we have data about where all the Merlins finish at champs, ST events etc we know nothing about the people they are sailing against. To work out CSF you need a good benchmark, you can't just assume that the Merlin national champion is about as good as the guy who came 3rd at the 400s, or that a mid fleet merliner is about as good as a front fleet Javelin.

Posted: 16/12/2008 07:13:23
By: Chris M
Alan, I was not looking for you to do the calcs but thanks, that is quite suprising, and pleasing really. Maybe I am not as bad as I thought, just in the wrong class?! Not that I am going change the class at any point soon! Think I just need to loose the weight I carry.

Posted: 16/12/2008 08:07:39
By: Jez3550
Chris M.  You are right about the assumptions on CSF. An no handicapping system is ever going to be perfect either. I think the key is is get lots of data - whilst the top end of the Merlin fleet attracts high quality helms it is important that the data samples are not so restricted that they do not include a broad range of CSF.

It is also true to say that other classes attract very highly skilled sailors too (I14, 49ers etc etc )

Posted: 16/12/2008 11:43:02
By: Alan F
Just thought I would add my two pennys worth to the discussion on PY ratings.....
Nine years of racing between the MRXs and Merlins at the Welsh Harp have shown
(at least in the minds of the MRXers but I think our leading Merlin helms will
grudgingly agree)that there is next to no difference in performance between the
two classes; the Merlin has the edge in the heavy stuff, the MRX in the light
flukey conditions. Whilst we don't have an official PY rating because we're too
small a class we sail away on a provisional rating of 1000 and over the years our
experience is showing that we have got this about right. Over six years of our best
3-4 boats going to the Icicle Pursuit race and the best MRX has achieved 2nd. or 3rd,,
losing out to a RS300, a Solo or an Enterprise. Four of our best MRXs have regularly
raced at Medway Marathon over the last six years, each time against a large
varied fleet, and have performed well, our best boat winning it the last two times
both cases in EXCEPTIONALLY light conditions which once again plays in MRXs
favour. Meanwhile, back at the Harp, after nine years of starting off the same gun
(in 9 yrs that's a lot of races!) if our best Merlins helms (in their Winder boats) are
out you wouldn't want to put your money on whether its a Merlin or a MRX that crosses the
finish line first some 90 mins. later.

Posted: 16/12/2008 16:14:27
By: MRXer Mark
I agree with you Mark. Having sailed with the Dark Side. There's no significant difference. But there might be if you got up to 98Kg!. 1000 PY would be about right for the front runners 1018 is hard work, for me anyway. (But I'm still learning to sail fast!)

Posted: 16/12/2008 17:02:46
By: Jon3581
I think the merlin handicap really lies somewhere between 1000 and 1015. I refuse to beleive that the Merlin is consistantly as fast/faster than a Fireball once you eliminate CSF and go above a force 2/3.

Posted: 16/12/2008 18:28:31
By: Chris M
Forgot to mention, are the better I14 and 49er sailors taking part in the Snowflake?

Posted: 16/12/2008 18:29:27
By: Chris M
OK, I'm not diss-ing my own blood, as she did very well to be 2nd junior, and I worked hard as her crew. But take a look at 37th versus 38th.  Ok so it was light winds so the fireball was diadvantaged, but we held Matt off for two spinaker legs once the wind kicked in, literally 'on the pace' and losted out on the last tack of th last beat, due of course to my tactical error.

17 year old girl club sailor, with her fat dad crewing her, in a 8 year old Winder, versus Fireball World champ? Was that fair?

Posted: 16/12/2008 18:59:01
By: Alan F


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