IRC is rule of choice for CYCA’s blue water programme

The overall trophies in nearly all the world’s blue riband offshore races are awarded using the IRC rating system (International Rating Certificate) to establish the boat race positions and overall winners, including the Rolex Fastnet Race, Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, Rolex Middle Sea Race, Aramex Dubai to Muscat Offshore Race, Aegean 600 and Rolex China Sea Race.

The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) is the organiser of the Rolex Sydney Hobart and other offshore races comprising an extensive blue water race programme. The CYCA Board has recently confirmed that IRC will be the sole rating system used to determine the overall and divisional winners in their major Category 1 and 2 races in 2023, including the Rolex Sydney Hobart, Audi Centre Sydney Blue Water Pointscore, Noakes Sydney Gold Coast and Ponant Sydney Noumea Yacht Race.

CYCA Commodore Arthur Lane says “This decision reflects the evidence that IRC has become the most prevalent globally in blue water racing; it is not only a leading international rating system but also helps to foster the development of new yachts and classes, both of which are critical for the long-term growth of offshore yacht racing.”

IRC rated boats in Australia make up around 10% of the global IRC fleet and IRC owners and race organisers are supported by Australian Sailing as the IRC Rule Authority and the RORC Rating Office.

Jason Smithwick, Director of Rating at the RORC Rating Office, responded to the announcement: “We are very pleased that the CYCA, a world-renowned offshore race organiser, has demonstrated their commitment to the IRC rating system and we look forward to working with the club and supporting their excellent race programme and sailors.”

CYCA website:

CYCA press release: Cruising Yacht Club of Australia to adopt single rating rule for the 2023/24 Audi Centre Sydney Blue Water Pointscore – Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (

Australian Sailing rating resources:

An iconic view of the start of the 2022 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. © ROLEXAn iconic view of the start of the 2022 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. © ROLEX