With this move IRC has become a truly global rating system and coupled with the Spanish move away from IMS means the demise of that system

The New York Yacht Club (NYYC) and the Storm Trysail Club (STC) jointly announced today that they will be racing under IRC beginning in 2005. The handicap rule will be used at the NYYC’s Rolex Transatlantic Challenge starting May 21, 2005 and the NYYC’s 151st Annual Regatta June 10-12, 2005. STC will offer IRC classes in the Lauderdale-Key West Race in January, the Pineapple Cup (Florida to Jamaica) in February and will use it at Block Island Race Week June 19-25. The commitment to IRC is from 2005 to 2007, or for a minimum of three years.

The rating rule for cruiser/racer sailboats is owned and administered by the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) Rating Office in Lymington, UK, and Union National pour la Course au Large (UNCL) in Paris. Presently there are about 6,000 yachts rated and racing under IRC in Europe, as well as in more than 30 other countries, including Australia, South Africa and Hong Kong. Most recently IRC was used for the first time in this country at the St. Francis Yacht Club’s Big Boat Series in San Francisco, is used at the Fastnet Race and will be used in the next Sydney-Hobart Race in December in Australia.

Reasons for the change include: ? A desire to improve and reinvigorate handicap racing in our local (NYYC, STC and U.S.) fleets; ? To encourage increased U.S. participation in international regattas and international participation in U.S. regattas; ? IRC’s popularity worldwide; ? It produces a single-number rating; ? Fairly rates a wide variety of types; ? Vast data base of hundreds of popular designs. This helps to keep measurement costs down.

IRC will also be used in the USA in 2005 at the Annapolis Yacht Club’s Annapolis-Newport Race, said Commodore Mark A. Myers; the Stamford Yacht Club will use IRC for the NORT and the Vineyard Race, according to Commodore James F. Love Jr.; St. Francis Yacht Club will use it for major handicap events including the Big Boat Series again next year, according to Commodore Terry G. Klaus, and it will be offered by Premiere Racing at Key West Race Week and Miami Race Week, says Peter S. Craig. Also, Larchmont Yacht Club will offer IRC classes in the Edlu Distance Race and Larchmont Race Week, said Commodore Peter E. Kelly.