SYRF Venn Diagram V5

At SYRF, we strive to be the leader in advancing the science and analysis of sailboat performance. Our mission is to develop and catalog the science underlying sailboat performance resulting in more accurate sailboat handicapping formulae for the benefit of all racing sailors.


The vast majority of sailors around the world compete in handicap racing. SYRF is dedicated to improving their experience by providing science-based support to enhance the accuracy, transparency and usability of existing handicapping systems and rules used by these sailors. Enthusiasm and participation is often undermined by the perception that the rating rules are unfair, so it is SYRF's role to help these rules improve.

SYRF is not another rating rule—it is instead a foundation that seeks donations to fund cutting-edge, science-based tools to accurately predict the performance of sailing yachts in varying conditions. Current projects include low cost, high correlation simulation tools (aero and hydro models) for yacht performance and a unique method of weather analysis to solve the issue of weather’s effect on results. These projects, if successful, will represent a vast improvement in the available technology-driven tools to support the efforts made by rating authorities to publish accurate science-based rules and ratings.

“The research that SYRF supports can be very valuable,” said Alessandro Nazareth, Chairman of the International Technical Committee of the Offshore Racing Congress (ORC). “For example, providing a library of performance data from race boats is a useful tool in refining and validating the VPP.”

SYRF has also helped developed apps to allow rule makers to permit competitors to see real-time corrected positions on their smart phones while racing—no more guessing who is leading or who has won, transforming the end user experience and reducing the scoring burden on event organizers.

More accurate, lower cost, transparent rating tools coupled with real time scoring will lead to “fairer” and better racing, which in turn  will encourage higher levels of   participation.  SYRF therefore needs the continued support of all those who favor a fair, honest and transparent approach to handicap racing.

SYRF, a 501(c)3 foundation, was incorporated in 2006 by a group of sailors and scientists who, through research into the performance of competitive sailing yachts, made it their goal to develop the tools that aid in promulgating better handicap racing in all categories.

Help ensure our research and development continues