The IRC rating rule has been used by racing owners in Asia for many years, with major IRC regattas well established in Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. In the last few years Japan and mainland China have benefitted from the use of IRC for their racing fleets, and now the RORC Rating Office and the Chinese Taipei Sailing Association (CTSA) are pleased to announce that IRC will be used for Taiwan-owned boats in 2016, further strengthening the IRC fleet in East Asia.
The local yachting scene in Taiwan has recently been boosted by the relaxation of harbour entry and tax rules, in an effort to help develop the domestic market in leisure yacht ownership as well as attracting visiting yachts. Against this positive background the CTSA, as the World Sailing Member National Authority for the country, is enthusiastic in its responsibility to organise and encourage fair yacht racing for their sailors and recognises the IRC rating system as a superior method of handicapping its local fleet.
The CTSA plans to hold IRC racing at the Penghu International Regatta Series this summer and looks forward to introducing IRC rating to boat owners in Taiwan.
Photo provided by Penghu Sailing Association
Taiwan lies around 180km east of China, so using the IRC rating rule will allow Taiwanese owners to race not only in their local waters but also in events organized by neighbouring China and Hong Kong, and indeed any other IRC race worldwide. Visiting sailors who hold IRC ratings will also be able to join in with races in Taiwan and have the opportunity to race in a different mixed fleet and boost local entries.
IRC is one of only two International Rating Rules as recognised by World Sailing, and annually issues 8000 certificates to 6000 boats racing in hundreds of club and international events in almost 40 countries worldwide. In all but one of the famous offshore classic races, including the Rolex Fastnet Race, the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race and Rolex Middle Sea Race, the major trophy is awarded to the overall winner in IRC.