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The ultimate decision on whether or not to race remains the sole and inescapable responsibility of the owner or the owner’s representative.


None of the establishment of these Rules, their use by Race Organisers, the issue of a rating certificate under these Rules, nor any inspection of the boat under these Rules shall constitute any representation or warranty by the Rating Authority as to the seaworthiness of any boat or the safety of any gear and shall not in any way limit the absolute responsibility of the owner/competitor referred to in Rule 3.1. This notice shall be brought to the attention of any person who sails on a boat in respect of which a rating certificate has been issued under these Rules.


Ratings issued under IRC are calculated in good faith from the data available. Neither the Rating Authority nor any Rule Authority shall have any liability whatsoever for any error in the application of these Rules or the determination of any factor which may affect the rating or the exercise of any judgement in the application of these Rules or the issue of a certificate or for changes in these Rules.


The establishment of an IRC Crew Number in respect of any boat does not constitute any representation or warranty as to the safety of the boat when sailing with this or any other number of crew (see Rule 3.1). When domestic law invokes any form of crew limitation different from the IRC Crew Number, this limitation shall replace IRC Crew Number.



IRC is administered by Seahorse Rating Ltd (referred to in these Rules as the RORC Rating Office) and the UNCL Centre de Calcul (referred to as UNCL) only. The expression Rating Authority is defined as the RORC Rating Office and the UNCL Centre de Calcul acting jointly. The expression Rule Authority is defined as any other individual or body authorised by the Rating Authority to act for the Rating Authority on a local basis for the administration of IRC in a defined geographical area.


In order to ensure the integrity of the unpublished elements of the IRC Rule all details of the IRC Rule are the sole property of the RORC Rating Office and UNCL who shall appoint an IRC Technical Committee comprised solely of those persons who have knowledge of the unpublished elements of the Rule. This committee shall be solely responsible for any changes in the Rule algorithms.


IRC TCCs are the copyright of RORC Rating Office and UNCL jointly and shall not be modified by any third party. Action may be taken against any third party using IRC derived handicaps, whether precise or amended for the purpose of race handicapping any boat without a current IRC certificate. Adjustment of elapsed time to effectively amend an IRC TCC is considered to be modification of the IRC TCC by a third party unless: (a)

agreed in writing by the Rating Authority for a specific purpose, or

(b) (c) 4.4

applied due to an infringement of a Rule while racing defined in the Sailing Instructions which would otherwise be a matter for a protest committee, or

application of a penalty by a protest committee.

Stability and Safety Screening numerals are RORC Rating Office copyright.

The IRC Policy Steering Group is responsible for the overall direction of IRC. The IRC Policy Steering Group comprises representatives appointed by RORC and UNCL, and a representative appointed by the International IRC Owners’ Association.

4.5 Additionally there shall exist an International IRC Owners’ Association comprising owners of boats holding current IRC certificates. The International IRC Owners’ Association shall have international representation which reflects the distribution of certificated boats, and shall be a forum for owners to discuss and if agreed to make recommendations or suggestions to the IRC Technical Committee and the IRC Policy Steering Group.

8.3 8.4

5 5.1


Requests for interpretation of the IRC Rule shall be made in writing through Rule Authorities to the Rating Authority who will consult and communicate any decision to Rule Authorities.


The Rating Authority may grant dispensations to the IRC Rule on an individual boat basis at its entire discretion. Any such dispensations shall be noted on a boat’s IRC certificate.


The languages of IRC shall be English and French. In the event of any discrepancy, the English text shall prevail. The meaning of any word shall be by reference to the Oxford English Dictionary in the context in which it appears. The words ‘shall’ and ‘must’ are mandatory, the words ‘may’ and ‘can’ are permissive. The word ‘should’ is advisory.


Any reference to the Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS) is defined as the current version of the World Sailing Racing Rules of Sailing. Reference to the Equipment Rules of Sailing (ERS) refers to the current version of the World Sailing Equipment Rules of Sailing. Reference to Special Regulations (OSR) is defined as the current version of World Sailing Offshore Special Regulations.


ERS shall apply except where deleted or amended by IRC Rules or Appendix 1.

7.4 Any dispute arising out of the administration of the IRC Rules by the Rating Authority or a Rule Authority shall be referred to the IRC Policy Steering Group referred to in Rule 4.4 – which shall allow the applicant to be given a fair opportunity to make his case either in writing or in person (as the IRC Policy Steering Group may determine). The decision of the IRC Policy Steering Group shall be final.


All IRC ratings will be calculated by and rating certificates issued by the Rating Authority. Rule Authorities may be authorised to print rating certificates under licence.

Each boat racing under IRC shall hold a current valid IRC certificate. A boat shall not hold more than one valid IRC rating certificate at any time except as permitted by Rule 8.2.1. 8.2.1 A boat may additionally hold a separate short-handed certificate. This short-handed certificate shall be valid only for racing in classes, or divisions of classes, for no more than 2 crew, included in a Notice of Race. When specified in a Notice of Race, boats holding short-handed certificates, and racing in a short-handed class or division, may also be scored in the overall results of the race. The short-handed certificate will be clearly identified and shall only vary from the primary certificate in respect of mainsail widths, headsail dimensions, single furling headsail allowance, the use of stored power, SPA, STL, spinnaker pole/bowsprit, moveable ballast and variable ballast. A boat holding a short-handed certificate shall use that certificate for races for no more than 2 crew.

8.2.2 Issue of any new rating certificate automatically invalidates the old one.

8.2.3 A copy of the current rating certificate(s) shall be kept on board the boat.

An IRC certificate is valid for racing under Part C, IRC, advertising permitted and Part D, IRC, advertising not permitted.

Rating certificates will be issued with the heading of the Rule Authority and any sponsorship as appropriate.

8.5 An ENDORSED IRC certificate is one for which the data on the certificate has been audited and if necessary verified by measurement, or other methods in accordance with current published standards. An owner may apply to their Rule Authority to have an IRC rating certificate Endorsed. The Rule Authority will inform the owner of any measurement, including weighing, or other checks required prior to issue by the Rating Authority of a certificate carrying (irrespective of

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