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Trial Certificates

See also rules regarding fees for new designs and design trials

The underlying purpose of an IRC trial certificate is to allow an owner to assess the effect of a proposed modification to his boat which because of the confidential nature of IRC he is unable to calculate for himself.

A parallel is what is known as a 'designer trial'. This is a trial certificate issued to a designer based on design data before construction of a boat to enable the designer to estimate to the owner what the boat will rate.

Noting IRC rule 2.4: The Rule discourages unnecessary expense at all levels, it is essential that a trial certificate system is in place. However, it is also essential that this system is controlled to prevent abuse and hence 'leakage' of the confidential elements of the rule.

The RORC Rating Office has seen an increase recently in trial certificates and specifically in designer trial certificates giving rise to cause for concern about confidentiality. In the interests therefore of satisfying both of the above, the following offers guidance on the number and type of trial certificates that will be issued.

1. The RORC rating Office reserves the right to refuse to issue a trial certificate without stating a reason and to amend these conditions at any time without notice and without stating any reason.

2. The following is given as guidance only. There will inevitably be exceptions which will be treated on an individual basis.

3. All requests for trial certificates shall specify definitive data. Trials of the form 'What must E be to achieve a TCC of' will not be issued.

4. Requests for trial certificates should be accompanied by a drawing showing hull, appendages, fitout, rig, etc. as appropriate. This will always be the case for designer trial certificates. The Rating Authority reserves the right to request further information before running trials

5. Discrete series of trial certificates, exploring the effect of incrementally varying a single variable, will not be issued.

6. Not more than 6 trial certificates will be permitted in any one calendar year for any existing boat. Not more than 3 of these may concern modifications to the hull or appendages.

7. Not more than 25 designer trial certificates will be issued to any one design office in any one calendar year. Within this number, not more than 6 will be issued in any 2 metre range of LOA, of which not more than 3 may concern variations to the hull, appendages or weight.

8. Requests for designer trials shall clearly identify the boat and any previous designer trials issued for that boat.

Rating Office February 2008

Sail Numbers

Yachts racing under the Racing Rules of Sailing (ie. any boat racing under any of the rating rules we administer) must hold an approved sail number as prescribed by her national authority. This sail number shall be displayed in accordance with RRS 77, Identification on Sails.

In the UK, sail numbers are issued by the RYA or by the RORC Rating Office. RYA members can obtain a sail number from the RYA free of charge, contact them on tel 0845 345 0400 E-mail . Sail numbers issued by the RYA will have a Y,M,N,T,A or L suffix. Clyde Yacht Clubs' Association numbers (C suffix) are also approved under RRS Appendix G .

RORC sail numbers have an R suffix.

Standard sail numbers are available in the range 1000 - 9999.  RORC members are entitled to a 3-figure sail number.

To apply for a standard 4-figure RORC sail number please register with MyIRC (see main menu item above) if you have not already done so. You then have the option to select and pay for your sail number online, and will get a discount on the sail number fee.

If you experience problems with this please contact the RORC Rating Office.

For 3-figure number if you are a RORC member, please contact the RORC Rating Office. 

Important information regarding the issue of sail numbers, and what happens if you sell your boat.


What Happens If You Sell Your Boat

The RORC Rating Office issues two different types of sail numbers:

3 or 4 figure numbers (with an R suffix) eg. GBR123R/GBR1234R: These are issued to the BOAT and by default they stay with the boat when it is sold, unless specific arrangements are made to retain the number.

2 figure "special" numbers (with an R suffix) eg. GBR12R: These are like personal numberplates and are issued to a PERSON rather than the boat. By default the sail number does not transfer with the boat when it is sold, it remains the property of the person who purchased it. However, to avoid confusion we strongly recommend that it is explicitly stated in the sale documents that the sail number is to be retained.

The safest thing to do is always explicitly state in the sale documents if the sail number is to be retained by the previous owner.

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