SLSA Rankings

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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby SLSA Rankings » Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:57 am

SLSA Rankings wrote:Starting August 1st:

as defined in "SLSA Rankings - Calculation", the "Quality factor" will be now in use for ACA Rankings.

"The Quality Factor (Q) is calculated according to the number of top ranked competitors attending the regatta. It can only be calculated when the results have been received. Q is determined by the formula Q = 1 + n/20 where n is the number of competitors who feature in the top 10 of the last published ranking list prior to the event. The limits of Q are set between 1.0 and 1.5. The Quality Factor applies only when at least 5 competitors have raced 12 graded events (last published ranking list prior to the event)."

Only FIZZ and ACA rankings matches the underlined prerequisite so far. Some other classes will certainly follow later.

So, starting August 1st, and as indicated in the "SLSA Rankings – Current Rankings" page under the ACA section, you may get more points when racing WITH sailors in "Top 10 for Quality factor in August". An evolution graph for ACA rankings will be online very soon.

Have fun! :)


:arrow: NEW EVOLUTON GRAPH FOR ACA (Top 10)
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Naeve Rossini » Wed Aug 04, 2010 1:06 pm

Woot! I'm not in the cellar of the ACA racers anymore!
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Opening discussion regarding QW factor

Postby SLSA Rankings » Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:38 am

SLSA rankings will be 6 months old by the end of August. Time to discuss few tweaks? As already explained, we are all in a learning curve, some variables may be adjusted over time, but the main principles are very likely to remain unchanged. I'd like some particular points to be discussed in this thread, in order final decision is archived, explained and understood (accepted) by everyone. Again, SLSA Rankings is not Bea's things, make it yours by contributing.

Some of the competitors already expressed remarks about the QW factor.

So far, it is defined as:
"Quarterly Weightings (QW) add a bonus percentage weighting to Rankings Points from more recent graded events compared to Rankings Points from 6-12 months ago. The Quarterly Weightings are determined as follows:
Results in the last 3 months (rounded to 90 days): QW = 1.5
Results in the last 3 to 6 months (rounded to 91-180 days): QW= 1.0
Results in the last 6 to 12 months (rounded to 181-360 days): QW= 0.5
Results more than 12 months old (rounded to 361 days): QW= 0 (discarded)"


History:
At the beginning, this parameter was called "HYWF - Half Year Weighting Factor", with:
Results in the last 6 months (rounded to 180 days): QW = 1.5
Results in the last 6 to 12 months (rounded to 181-360 days): QW= 1.0
Results more than 12 months old (rounded to 361 days): QW= 0 (discarded)

After 3 months, looking at the results, we changed HYWF to QW on purpose, in order to provide more interest, more "dynamic", generate more traffic in weekly events, to avoid a border effect while all racers have not 12 results: a racer who wins 12 races, may remain 1st ranked for 3 months (without participating in any event), until others have also 12 "good" results. (This issue will disappear with time, once all top ranked sailors, in each class, have entered 12 events).

I received several IM from sailors, with suggestions, especially from sailors involved in Fizz rankings, which is the most active. So far, the 2 suggestions I have got are:

1) Use a 4-month value:
Results in the last 4 months (rounded to 120 days): QW = 1.5
Results in the last 4 to 8 months (rounded to 121-240 days): QW= 1.0
Results in the last 8 to 12 months (rounded to 241-360 days): QW= 0.5
Results more than 12 months old (rounded to 361 days): QW= 0 (discarded)

2) Use a "smoother" factor, such as:
Results in the last 3 months (rounded to 90 days): QW = 1.5
Results in the last 3 to 6 months (rounded to 91-180 days): QW= 1.25
Results in the last 6 to 12 months (rounded to 181-360 days): QW= 1.0
Results more than 12 months old (rounded to 361 days): QW= 0 (discarded)
or even:
current month "M": 1.5, M-1: 1.4, M-2: 1.3...M-11: 0.4, M-12: 0

What is important to keep in mind is:
- the same calculation method MUST apply to all classes (some have 12 events a month, some others have only 3 or 4)
- SLSA Rankings are intended to be long term and permanent (perpetual): don't be influenced by a starter effect (or holidays effect), try to anticipate or plan for the future.
- Also, keep in mind you may use your brain to optimize your ranking :). I mean, R and Q factor are very important... e.g: when top ranked sailors race against each other, it has a huge effect on ranking...

For my own, I think that the actual value for QW is a good compromise and works well. It seems "logical" for me, that when a 1st ranked sailor stop racing for 2 months he/she falls in rankings, because his/her top 12 results cannot be in the last 3-month gap (so some will be x 1.0 instead of 1.5).

Thus, I am pretty happy with QW as it is, but I'm looking forward to hearing from you.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Liv Leigh » Fri Aug 06, 2010 3:26 am

I think QW is rather representative, also because it doesn't 'force' sailors to participate in all events. It gives more room than monthly changes to skip events and sleep/eat in the time saved ;)
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Dahral Huet » Sun Aug 08, 2010 11:53 am

I confess i was one of the sailors who suggested a change in the QW factor.
In order to have the maximum points (with factor of 1.5) in 3 months, you need to sail an average of at least 4 races per month. This will give you a factor of 1.5 for the 12 last races. If i look at the rankings, only a few people race 4 races per month. (that would be 20 races in the 5 months the ranking is running so far). Only 4 sailors sailed so many races in all the boat classes (all 4 in Fizz).
The next thing is, that the QW as it is now, gives huge advantage to people who have a lot of time in RL. Someone who is working 5 days a week will hardly be able to sail 4 races per month on a regular base. So i suggested a change to a factor of 1.5 for the last 4 months. That will make 3 races per month to have the full amount of races with the factor of 1.5 within these 4 months.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby SLSA Rankings » Tue Aug 10, 2010 9:17 am

Liv, Dahral, thank you for your input. Waiting for more insights, decision by August 31st.

Rem: Quaterly means every 3 months... My Harrap's says "Quarter" is the English word for american "Trimester" (school). ("Quartal or trimester" in german? / "Trimestre" in italian? / "kwartaal" in dutch? / "trimestre" in french / "quarto" in portugese / ... In brief, for some of us, 3 months are equal to 3 months, while for others 3 months are equal to one year divided by 4... Mhmm. Well, anyway, 3 = 1+1+1 = 12/4 (or 12 4 / if like me you prefer RPN - Reverse Polish Notation). Btw, a "trimester" in polish is said "kwartał". Not sure it helps... :)
:?: If it happens we change QW into a 4-month period, what name will we use ?
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Lynn » Wed Aug 11, 2010 3:26 pm

Regardless of what terminology we use, I am totally in agreement with Dahral's suggestion.

I am new to SL competitive sailing, but I am trying very hard to attain a ranking. However I am one of those who works in US time (central), and so I can only be online on weekends and after 6 PM on weekdays. My thanks goes out to all those race directors who put out the effort to hold graded races, but... For my time schedule, it's still hard to find any graded events in my available time. I sail every one I can make, but I'm lucky to find one or two a week in the ACA, and fewer or none in the other boats.

I know stretching out the ranking time may not seem fair to someone who has more available time, or to the lucky Europeans who have several regular races at noon and 4 PM SL. (Yeah, I know time zones work against the Europeans in other ways though...so I'm just kidding). But faced with the realities, until we can create more US evening and weekend race directors, it would allow more of us to participate in the rankings if we spread out the time for ranking, perhaps to the most recent "rolling" 3 month period.
Last edited by Lynn on Wed Aug 11, 2010 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby SLSA Rankings » Wed Aug 11, 2010 3:36 pm

Lynn wrote:Regardless of what terminology we use, I am totally in agreement with Dahral's suggestion.

I am new to SL competitive sailing, but I am trying very hard to attain a ranking. However I am one of those who works in US time (central), and so I can only be online on weekends and after 6 PM on weekdays. My thanks goes out to all those race directors who put out the effort to hold graded races, but for my time schedule, it is still hard to find any graded events in my available time. I sail every one I can make, but I'm lucky to find one or two a week in the ACA, and fewer or none in the other boats.

I know it may not seem fair to someone who has more available time, or to the lucky Europeans who have several regular races at noon and 4 PM SL (yeah, I know time zones work against the Europeans in other aspects though...so I'm just kidding).But faced with the realities, until we can create more US evening and weekend race directors, spreading out the time for ranking, perhaps to the most recent "rolling" 3 month period would allow more of us to participate in the rankings.


Thank you Lynn.
I join you in hoping that more and more RDs join this competition, to offer more opportunities to the greatest number.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Liv Leigh » Thu Aug 12, 2010 4:16 am

I had some issues with Fizz races that sometimes took place at 'inconvenient' times for me. So.. how do you solve this?
One method is: Start your own event!

Honestly.. there are plenty clubs that would welcome a new RD and, if I listen to stories like yours, plenty sailors that would join in an event that would take place at a time suitable to them.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby SLSA Rankings » Mon Aug 16, 2010 6:37 am

2 things here:

1°) Reminder: 2 weeks to go before we decide regarding this discussion: Opening discussion regarding QW factor. I'd like to get more contributions.

2°) New ACA V3
Compared to V2.53: V3 is a totally new boat, with a new sailing engine, new sailing style, new characteristics, features and performances. Mixed races between 2.53 and 3.0 would have no sense. That said, there will be early adopters of V3, while some others will sail the 2,53 for a (short?) while. The market/race directors/sailors will then decide, but we keep the 2.53 table still alive for the moment.

So, the actual ACA rankings becomes ACA 2.53 Ranking, and we start from scratch with another ACA V3 Ranking.

It is let in RD's hands to announce a grading event for V2.53 only OR for V3 only. Those concerned could also IM me in order I may add this information in the SLSA Rankings calendar.
Also, RDs please, indicate clearly which version has been used when you post the results, in order I may update the right spreadsheet...


And again... more YCs/RDs/Class... are welcome to participate in rankings.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Lynn » Mon Aug 16, 2010 10:39 am

Weighted Gradings

Current weaknesses The current SL Sailing graded races have two serious weaknesses. These have been pointed out and discussed at length.

(A) The grading today favors a racer who can enter more races, even if the racer is losing the races. Someone who averages fourth place in 20 races may gain more points than someone who always comes in first, but can enter only 5 races.

(B) The grading today favors a racer who enters races where the best racers do not enter. The quality factor currently in use is too weak to differentiate the quality of the races. Said in plain English, it is not just 1.5 better to beat the top two racers than to beat only the 30th and 40th ranked racers. It is much, much better than that.

Offsetting concerns In trying to remedy these weaknesses, there are some opposite concerns to keep in consideration.

(A) It is a good thing to reward those who enter races often. More racers entering more races is what will make the sailing community grow and become more exciting and competitive.

(B) We cannot encourage someone with a top position to simply "hide out" and not defend that position. The rankings should be able to completely "turn around" in a six-month duration, since a departure from activities in SL for 3 months or longer is about the same as closing your account. This keeps the competition alive and vibrant. You should not have to compete with skeletons.

(C) Lastly, we cannot make the grading system so complex that it cannot be understood, or so weighted down that a new sailor cannot challenge the leaders and attain a significant ranking that reflects his/her abilities.

Two Adjustments A race quality factor and a race aging system can be used to address these issues, as they now are, but both should be made to have a stronger effect.

Grading the Race

(A) Hold graded races as we now do. Use the points triangle based on the number of participants and the place attained in the graded event, based on the number of wins with the worst race thrown out. This gives us the unadjusted grading points.

(B) Competitive Quality Factor: I would propose a factor with a maximum value of 3.3 and a minimum value of 1.0, with the formula: 20 divided by the sum of the rankings of the top 3 graded contenders in the race, or a minimum value of 1. [Added 18 Aug 2010] The ranking used would be the sailor's most recent ranking, or 15, whichever is least. This has the effect of focusing the quality factor on the top 15 ranked skippers, and also handles the issue of ungraded competitors.

As examples, a race with the top three racers in the rankings participating would therefore have a weighting factor of 3.3, or 20 divided by (1+2+3). A race with the top contenders being only the 10th and 20th place racers and one ungraded would have a weighting factor of 1.0 (since 20 divided by 30 is less than one).

The quality factors would be calculated initially using the rankings currently in place.

Calculating the Rankings (obviously, all these numbers can be tweaked)

Normalizing the Number of Races Use up to 15 races, consisting of the sum of the top 5 races over the past two months and the top 5 remaining races over the past 4 months, and the top 5 remaining races over the past 6 months. This would penalize someone who didn't race in the class at least 15 times in 6 months, but would also make someone's score drop significantly if they quit racing for a two month period. Someone who enters more races simply increases their chances of getting a good score in their races to include in the total.

The net effect of the normalization process is to give effect to age quality of the races as well as to normalize the number of scores included. At the same time, it does not allow someone to gain a ranking based on only three or four races, or give someone who can race 3 times a day an advantage over someone who does not have that amount of time available on SL.

This system is not overly complex, and yet will give due credit to more recent and higher quality races in each class of boat, with fairness to SL Sailors with varying amounts of time to spend online.
Last edited by Lynn on Wed Aug 18, 2010 7:51 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Bea Woodget » Mon Aug 16, 2010 1:08 pm

Wow Lynn, thank you! I appreciate your interest, too bad you were not around when we started this thread. :)

My feeling is that the "weaknesses" you are talking about, are also somehow due to a "border" effect, the time for the rankings to be in place, the time most of the sailors have 12 results. (It may take 1 year). Of course, one of the pre-requisites for a sailor to be in the top ranked list, is ... to participate.

I will have a look at your proposal, more in depth, but so far, I think that our formula (P = R x F x Q x QW) may fix all the points, perhaps by tweaking some values, like we are discussing now regarding QW. Others factors R, Q, and F (which is not in use yet) may also be improved, step by step, as we acquire more experience and more datas.
The actual formula being based on a RL one which has been proven and improved for decades, then slightly adapted to SL (mainly frequency of races), I think it should work pretty well, and when I run different simulations with my spreadsheet, I am rather confident.
So, I'd tend to say: let's give it a change, let's see how we may adjust it, improve it, and finally change it if necessary.
But there are a lot of border effects to take into consideration (I see 1 or 2 that could arise with your proposal).
With your ideas, we have a good base together with the current formula. I understand your points, and I focus more on their motivation, rather than on the formula itself. Your remarks are based, and your approach is constructive. I appreciate, indeed.
And what if I tell you that some of my posts, doesn't reflect a critical side, but a perfectionist side, that I can not stand mediocrity when one could do great things even easier. Do I deserve a spanking? Do not say "yes!" or assume...
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Lynn » Mon Aug 16, 2010 2:01 pm

Thanks, Bea! I'm simply putting all that out there for the consideration of the group.

Regardless of the direction we go with the formulas and math, I am thoroughly enjoying the races and the people who compete, as well as those who put out so much effort to make the races happen and who bring them to life in the web blogs.
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby SLSA Rankings » Fri Aug 20, 2010 3:56 am

1. Calendar: A new graded RCJ44 event: Weekly - Hosted by GGWSYC - Fridays at 02:00 PM SLT

2. Regarding QW - Decision next saturday, 2 choices:
- either no change - SOLUTION 1 : QW=1.5 (less than 3 months) / QW = 1.00 (3 to 6 months) / QW = 0.50 (6 to 12 months) / QW = 0.00 (> 12 months)
- or new factor - SOLUTION 2 : QW=1.5 (less than 4 months) / QW = 1.00 (4 to 8 months) / QW = 0.50 (8 to 12 months) / QW = 0.00 (> 12 months)

SOLUTION 2 seems to be your preference. I see no drawbacks. What do you think?
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Re: SLSA Rankings

Postby Liv Leigh » Sun Aug 22, 2010 3:34 am

I think solution 2 offers a little more options to those of us who are not complete racing maniacs like me (or: like I used to be.. I race less events since about a year). Though of course I am still of the conviction that motivation is a factor too in it. A good example is Colin Nemeth, who fought his way into the ACA top 10 ranks.
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