Stories from the Street

Published on July 28th, 2013

Donald Street Jr. is somewhere north of 80 years old, and has swallowed more salt water than most of us will ever have splashed on us. Here he shares some handicap rule history…

The Cruising Club of America (CCA) rule was created in the middle twenties and slowly evolved with no major changes; just changes to stop the developement of unseaworthy characteristics in offshore racer/cruisers.

Under the CCA rule, a good boat could be a winner and also be an offshore or coastwise cruising boat; witness Carina, Hother, Bolero, Baruna, and others.

The rule lasted from the middle 1920’s until replaced by the IOR rule in the 1970s.

The CSA (originally the WIYA – West Indies Yachting Association – which became the Caribbean Sailing Association rule) was originally developed by Alfred Rapier from Trinidad in the late 60’s and is still used 55 years later!

This rule slowly developed under Alfred’s guidance as yacht design changed through the years. It is an excellent rule as boats can be measured in the water at a reasonable expense. They do not have to be weighed.

That it works is proven by the fact rating boats under IRC or CSA (in some regattas boats sail with a double rating and prizes are given to both ratings) does very little to change the finishing placement of the boat.

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