Laps and handicap results: help please!


New Sailwave user, so apologies if this is a dumb question.

I’m struggling to work out how to handle race results with these two characteristics:

  1. Lapped competitors are finished a lap early

  2. I’m using start/finish or elapsed time rather than place order because of the need to generate handicap results

For point 1, our SIs specify:

“Once the leading boat has finished, all other boats in her class will finish when they next cross the finishing line in the same direction as the leading boat. Lapped boats will have finishing positions behind boats which completed the same number of laps as the leader.”

I had naively assumed that Sailwave uses a combination of elapsed time and laps completed to calculate the correct finish order, but this doesn’t seem to be the case.

Illustration below. Omega (1605) was lapped, and should be 7th. I can see what’s happening, but had assumed that Sailwave would look first at laps completed in calculating the corrected time.

I’m probably missing something obvious, but I’ve been through the manual and tried to search the the forum and haven’t found a hint yet.

Hi Jon, There is nothing to set up, just adding the laps is all that is required, Suggest you attach your Sailwave file so Jon / Hugh can take a look. The corrected time is calculated on average lap and handicap rating so suspect its related to scoring system not matching your requirements. Can’t tell as ratings not shown and everything looks good on the screen shot based on corrected time.

Hi Jon,
Welcome to the Sailwave User Group.

You have not missed anything. Seems I need to update manual section on using Average Lap Time.

Sorry, Sailwave cannot deal with what is written in your SI’s :frowning:

Sailwave uses ‘Average Lap Time’ calculation for boats with different number of laps:

Corrected Time = Elapsed Time x (max laps completed by any boat / number of laps completed by boat in question) x (1000/PN)

The RYA published a guide to ‘Average Lap Racing’ a few years ago.

I am happy to take a look at your Sailwave if if you care to share.
Kind regards,

Thank you both.

New user/can’t upload the file, otherwise I would put it here.

The handicap results are secondary to the on-the-water ones and so I think the club would probably be perfectly content to calculate the handicap results using average lap rules, acknowledging that this also can produce curious results. Additionally, being an urban riving sailing club = plenty of unpredictable racing conditions, so all the club sailors are well used to taking their lumps from time to time!

In fact I thought I was effectively using Average Lap Time. That Corrected Time calculation looks just right.

The more I look at the results, the more I can see that it’s an unusual situation where the 4th placed boat (rating 1259) is getting just enough of an advantage to finish above the next two boats (ratings of 1144 and 1050 respectively), even with the Average Lap calculation working.

I thought that the RYA rules specified that boats with fewer completed laps have to finish behind those with more, and so I was hunting in vain for the check box to specify that!

I assume that for now I have to stay vigilant and manually correct, which is a bit of a pain because I was hoping to use one file to publish both the on-the-water and the handicap results.

Thanks again.

Hi Jonathan - I’ve upgraded your user level - so you should be able to attach files now

Quickly looking at your SI’s you quote. That doesn’t seem fair that a boat that has been lapped will be scored after the lapping boat unless they are of the same rating. This could be an issue with longer races with more laps


Thank you Jon.

File attached, although I’m fairly convinced now that this is a matter of edge cases in complex systems rather than me COMPLETELY misunderstanding what I’m doing.

On the question of fairness:

Firstly, these handicap results provide a secondary competition after the main results, which don’t use any ratings, so the rule makes sense coming from that perspective. It’s used primarily for evening racing, where the wind tends to die at dusk and forcing back markers to complete that final lap just becomes cruel.

Secondly, I did think that the requirement to score boats with fewer laps lower than those with more was an RYA rule, but I’m struggling to find it so perhaps I imagined it. The 1998 Guide to Average Lap Sailing that I found doesn’t seem to cover it. Instead, it offers a calculation for Modified Corrected Time. This is for the situation where boats with the same rating end up the “wrong way round” because one sailed an additional, slow lap.

At this point, I’m sorry I ever said I’d look into this!

TC Summer Series 2022 - Points.blw (67.0 KB)

Hi Jonathan,

The thing I missed originally was these where all the same class of boat so this is really a personal handicap.
If they were different classes then I think then it would be totally unfair for all boats doing less to be scored behind the others.
As what you are trying to do is not standard - I don’t think there is an easy way of doing what you want in this case

Click on the “Want to know more?” link here for the RYA’s explanatory document.

This states: If a boat ends with a corrected time greater than a boat which completed less laps but has the same PN, a modifying calculation should be applied as follows…
It’s basically a fudge.
The problem is that there could be another boat affected that has a very slightly different PN. The best thing to do is try and avoid this situation, by shortening course sooner if the wind is going to drop, or tide is going to have a more significant impact.
I’d argue that rather than “next cross the finishing line” your SIs should state “next complete a lap”, as otherwise a lapped boat could go straight to the finish line and not complete a full lap. For Average lap times to work each lap has to be the same course.

Thank you all, again.

What I’m now appreciating is that my club has (rationally) adopted quite a difficult set of processes, and that the outcome is some rational but eccentric-looking results.

As a result, I expect that we will continue to do what we are doing, but with a better understanding of the limitations. The RYA documentation that Martin points to is the stuff I couldn’t find. And I agree, further correcting feels not only more complex, slower and prone to error, but of limited value. Transparency and clarity can be more important than resolving edge cases.

Martin, you’re also right to pick up on the wording of the SIs. I will recommend a correction, because that was surely the intention. That said, all of our sailors are far too nice to contemplate such an egregious bit of sharp practice…I think.

Hi Jon,

I typed info below before xxxxxxxx I checked your website where I see you already have to sets of results but I shall leave it there for info as may help later. As you only need 1 file.

Looking at your results I would suggest they are correct (well Fair) and it’s your Si’s that may need to be adjusted for Personal Handicap racing as when scoring with a personal handicap you need to allow the slower handicaps to finish with fewer laps and still get a result based on the handicap.

Or Just explain to the person who asked then keep your head down…

xxxxxxxxxxxxx below for info

Please see attached modified version of you file.

It Users competitor aliasing, (alias automatically has same results of main competitor)

  • !!! Warning I have not changed FTP destination so don’t upload…_Just Preview

I have set each alias to to be in a different fleet, “Per Handicap”
Changed scoring to be per fleet
set Fleet White to not use any handicap system (Scoring override)
You get 2 sets of results one using PY and 1 based on race time.

It is still possible to get spurious results for the non handicap fleet results if for example the wind died to nothing for the boats completing the most laps but finishing mush latter. but much more unlikely.
(same as the Current process you have)
If we get that situation I usually just fiddle the finish time to get desired results and add a note.

We have a rule for boats of Same Class and PY that complete more laps finishing ahead of those that complete less laps, but apply a manual time adjustment to achieve this.

may be of use.

Demo–TC Summer Series 2022 - Points.blw (118.7 KB)

Thank you very much, Keith. I really appreciate the help that everyone’s offering.

In part this is a matter of getting up to speed and working out how we need to use Sailwave. We’ve been using it for a while, but it turns out in a quite basic & uncoordinated way across the fleets.

Now we’re trying to up our game and it turns out that once we’ve got the basics straight enough there’s going to be another level of optimisation. When I’m ready for that I’ll take a look at Keith’s version and try to make sure we’re doing it nicely from here on.

Thanks again, all.