Sportboats are often used for Match Racing events as the one design aspect makes them a perfect competition vessel.
Popular boat designs in Australia include the Melges 24, Viper 640, Esse 850, Elliott 7, Shaw 650 and Hobie Magic 25, VXOnes. More recently, New Zealand and Australian designs have become increasingly popular including various designs by Thompson, the Phuket 8 by Duncanson and a variety of boats by Shaw Yacht design.
The Racetrack website has kept relative performance data between a variety of Australian and New Zealand sportboats, in order to assess comparative performance. To date, the fastest sportboats have tended to be the lightest, least ballasted, widest boats, with the Rob Shaw designed 7 and 7.5m designs being the fastest in New Zealand, and the largest 8m Allan Carawadine and Bethwaite designs proving fastest in Australia.
The Australian Sports Boat Association is now the body that represents sportboat sailing in Australia. The Association is fully affiliated with Yachting Australia and aims to regulate and promote the racing of sports boats at regattas throughout Australia.
ASBA, incorporated in 2007, was founded by sports boats sailors Cameron Rae, Mark Roberts and Richard Parkes. The trio wanted to see a more scientific approach taken to handicapping the various designs racing together. Prior to the formation of ASBA handicaps were considered to be a bit of a lottery. Membership continues to grow with members in every state of Australia. The Association represents a myriad of sports boats including Thompson 7’s, 750’s and 8’s, Elliott 7’s and 780’s, Shaw 650s, Stealth 7’s and 8’s, Melges 24’s, Hobie magic 25’s and a host of other sports boat designs. Using their own new rating system called SMS the Association is aiming to create a level playing field for multiple designs, and to encourage high performance designs without the excessive penalties currently existing in other rating systems.
**Attributed to Wikipedia