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29 March 2007, 10:35 am
Transpac Removes Rating Limit For Fastest Boats
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Transpacific Yacht Race 2007

An unexpected development has prompted the Transpacific Yacht Club board of directors to remove the rating limit for the fastest boats seeking first-to-finish 'Barn Door' honours and possibly an elapsed time record in this summer's 44th Transpac from Los Angeles to Honolulu. The new eligibility limits will now allow boats up to 30 metres (98.5 feet) in length overall (LOA) to compete in their maximum configuration.
The Transpac race has had a rating limit based on the slightly smaller maxZ86 class (87 feet LOA). A special rating system was used to rate yachts near that limit. The design offices of Juan KOUYOUMDJIAN and Reichel/Pugh discovered significant loop holes in that rating system which resulted in a large unfair rating advantage for their first-to-finish contenders.

Given the short time for first-to-finish yachts to adjust their configurations to the limit, the Transpac board of directors elected to follow parallel paths to simultaneously: (1) request correction of the rating system in favour of fleet-wide fair ratings and (2) delete the rating portion of the eligibility limit so that first-to-finish contenders can complete their configuration changes while the rating system is corrected.

NOR Revised

The Notice of Race is being revised to state that monohull yachts with lengths between 26 feet and 30 metres, which meet the other race requirements, are eligible for entry in the 2007 Transpac. The eligibility limit now is based on maximum LOA and qualification under the other standards, common to all entries, listed in the Notice of Race. The rating is now immaterial to qualifying for entry at the upper end of the fleet.

Transpac Commodore Al GARNIER said, 'We regret making such significant changes so close to the race, but under the circumstances we believe it was the best way to keep the race as fair as possible for everyone.'

Two maxZ86s set the pace in the 2005 race. Hasso PLATTNER's (GER) Morning Glory logged an elapsed time record for monohulls of 6 days, 16 hours, 4 minutes and 11 seconds and finished about 2 and a half hours ahead of Roy E. DISNEY's (USA) Pyewacket.

Rich Roberts (As Amended By ISAF). Image, The big boat start for Transpac 2005:© Rich Roberts
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