ECHO Class Rules 2021
ECHO at ICRA
ICRA supports and promotes the ISA policy of dual scoring at all its events. An ECHO certificate is mandatory for all entrants from Ireland. An ECHO rating may be assigned to boats with IRC certificates from other areas.
ECHO racing may be more approachable for new entrants to racing, may encourage boats who do not have the time or resources to compete at the top level and should ensure that more boats have an interest in results as the regatta nears its end.
ECHO however works best when applied to a constant fleet which always races together. It is more problematic when applied to a disparate fleet such as is found at a national event.
Currently at the ICRA Nationals we start all boats at their standard ECHO rating which is usually within a few points of the IRC rating. In practice this means that the leading boats on IRC are nearly always the winners on ECHO as well. This is not in keeping with our policy on events.
ECHO rating mechanism
In order to assign suitable ratings to boats a number of assumptions are made:
- The standard of racing at events around the country is reasonably similar.
- Boats are doing their best in each race.
- An owner with a new boat is performing at the same level as in their previous boat.
- Visiting boats (eg from the UK) are taken to be high performance teams unless previous data from listed events is available.
- U25 teams are rated at the standard ECHO for their boat.
- Irish boats for which no data is available will be assigned the standard ECHO rating for their boat plus 2.5%
Data will be drawn from a variety of events.
Level 1 events
ICRA 2021, Sovereigns Cup 2021, D2D 2021.
Level 2 events
WIORA 2021, DBSC 2021 (Thurs Overall). Calves Week 2021, ISORA 2021, HYC Autumn League 2021 and KYC Spring Series 2022
Boats are divided into 5 groups based on their IRC results:
Group 1 (Standard ECHO X 1.10)
Class win in a level 1 event (with at least 6 boats in class)
Group 2 (Standard ECHO X 1.05)
2nd or 3rd in a level 1 event (with at least 6 boats in class)
1st or 2nd in a level 1 event with less than 6 boats in class
Class win in a level 2 event
Two podium finishes in level 2 event
Group 3 (Standard ECHO X 1.025)
2nd or 3rd in a level 2 event
3rd place in a level 1 event with less than 6 boats in class.
Group 4 (Standard ECHO)
Generally finish in top third of fleet and do not reach groups 1 to 3.
Group 5 (Standard ECHO X 0.95)
Generally finish outside of top third of fleet and do not reach groups 1 to 3.
Handicaps are adjusted automatically after each race using a progressive handicap system with a 75/25 split (New handicap is 75% of previous handicap plus 25% of performance index). The RC reserve the right to prospectively adjust handicaps in some circumstances or to exclude some races from handicap calculation. The RC also reserves the right to apply a handicap outside these guidelines.
ECHO and IRC Certification
ECHO, as the national performance handicap system, is mandatory for all boats wishing to take part in cruiser racing. All boats are also encouraged to take up an endorsed IRC certificate.
We promote that policy because of a belief that it encourages high levels of participation in cruiser racing.
There are no exceptions to the policy of mandatory ECHO certification so I’m afraid that if you require IRC certification then you will have to take an ECHO cert as well.
The Irish Sailing Association and Irish Cruiser Racing Association strongly recommend that all cruiser races be dual scored under ECHO and IRC rating and handicap systems. The purpose of this policy is to encourage participation by all cruiser boats in cruiser racing.