ORC: Coming to America

Published on March 12th, 2015

The ORC rating system has proven immensely popular in Europe, with the ORC World Championship as the only offshore World title sanctioned by the International Sailing Federation. The 2015 Worlds in Barcelona, Spain already has entries from 17 countries on four continents, with organizers anticipating a fifth consecutive year of over 100 entries at this annual offshore championship.

But despite the handicap rule’s traction in Europe and over 9000 certificates worldwide, it has not taken firm root yet in North America except for use in Vancouver and for the Vic-Maui race, the longest offshore race on the West Coast. But this may be changing…

This year marks the first time the new ORCsy handicap rule, specially developed by the Offshore Racing Congress (ORC) in collaboration with the Superyacht Racing Association, will be used at the fifth edition of the Loro Piana Caribbean Superyacht Regatta & Rendezvous taking place in Virgin Gorda, BVI on March 12-14.

The ORCsy rule has been under development for several months and will be put to the test for the first time during the Loro Piana event. Three ORC officials, including ORC Chairman Bruno Finzi, are on site to ensure that application of the new system runs smoothly.

“The great thing about the new rule,” said Finzi, “is that it is transparent, so each owner can see how the data has been treated and can compare his yacht to all the others.”

Three days of racing are scheduled, with boats divided into Classes A and B based on their handicap.

Details: EventORC rule

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