Different links layout for the 2012 Races page

As you probably already know, I try to put race files for the 2 most common routers used on SOL, as well as ‘raw’ GPX for importing into other programs like Google Earth or other Nav software, on the Races page (except for the very short ‘non-routable’ races). A recent update of Expedition allows it to import the course from GPX (and about time!), and it can do so from either the BWR race file or the raw GPX.

So, now instead of 3 links for raw GPX, CSV for Expedition and a Zip file for BWR I will now post 4 links (if in doubt there are tooltips over the links)


  • gpx – The same as before, raw GPX. Expedition can import marks from this file.
  • course – This is a BWR file containing the course and occasionally a separate Leg 1. Expedition can also import this file (but only the marks)
  • bwr_polar – Is the polar optimised for Bluewater
  • exp_polar – Is the same data formatted for Expedition

BWR users now download the 2 files separately, instead of the single zip which was unzipped directly into the BWR installation folder. The course must be put in your ‘races’ folder, and the polar in your ‘polars’ folder.

This will also save on downloading duplicates of the polars – if you already have it, don’t download it again (they never change)


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  1. #1 by scallions on June 10, 2012 - 20:37

    I’m not sure if this is the appropriate place for this comment.

    Getting a gpx error when I attempt to import a route into BWR
    After downloading and saving SWR8.gpx,
    File/Import routes/Browse/SWR8.gpx
    GPX error: can’t read “config(markprefix)”: no such variable
    “Attempt to add routes anyway” doesn’t work

    Using BWR 1.73 and SWR8.gpx

    • #2 by AGage on June 11, 2012 - 01:01

      You don’t actually ‘Import’ the routes – it is a normal ‘BWR saved course file’ (I created it in BWR), so just use ‘File->Open’
      Even on most systems BWR registers itself to be the default application for .gpx files (does the file have a BWR icon?) – meaning you may also be able to just double click the file.
      File opens fine for me on BWR 1.73


      • #3 by scallions on June 11, 2012 - 20:20

        Yep, file has a BWR icon and it works fine when I double click on it. Sometimes I just don’t remember how I got it to work before. Thanks.
        On another issue. I remember you saying you used BWR to optimize a race after it was over. How do you treat the weather to do this? Is there a single grib source for a hindcast for the duration of the race? Or is there a way of concatenating parts of Brainaids files to produce a hindcast? I believe removing weather variability would be enlightening.

      • #4 by AGage on June 12, 2012 - 04:24

        I hadn’t thought of concatenating multiple gribs – you would really have to extract just the first 6 hours of each one though (this is something I may look into)

        What I would do though is, say I downloaded the 0430 grib today – I would then record my position (say at 0500) and then load that grib, set the route start point to my 0500 location and obviously set the start time to 0500

        You can really learn a lot by retrospectively routing the previous 24hours (I used Sailplanner though) – and of course, what you can also do is enable isochrones, then make yet another route starting on the point where the previous optimal route crosses the +12h isochrone, and using the 1630 grib (based on using a 0430 initially). So, in this way you break the previous 24 hrs into 2x 12 hr blocks and route them.
        Now, you still need to do a lot of thinking/analysing. Especially earlier on, the computerised route will likely differ from your own quite a bit, and the trick is to understand WHY – that way you can apply the same logic next time you sit down to plot your own route for the next 6-12 hours 😉

        Not entirely sure what you mean ‘removing wx variability’ ?? That is a key aspect of this sport


      • #5 by AGage on June 12, 2012 - 04:33

        Actually now I think of it, it should be possible to construct a composite grib using the TCL console in BWR.
        I have an ‘extra documentation’ PDF sent me by Jeff the author of BWR, that documents almost all of the grib functionality available from the console.
        I routinely ‘trim’ the grib files down to smaller sizes (in area covered), and there is also a command to extract certain ‘Frames’. The ‘grib write’ function also has an append option, so yeah this is certainly possible. I think Expedition has ‘grib data extraction’ features to.
        I have been meaning to post about a script I wrote to make trimming the gribs easier (I could never remember the lat/lon bound order!) – and I will take a look at possibly making a script to generate a composite grib from the first 6 hours of those currently loaded in BWR.
        Doing it externally from BWR is also possible – and this could well be a useful thing to be able to do.
        76Trombones may well be able to shed some light on the best way to do this (although for many a BWR script would be easiest)

  2. #6 by scallions on June 14, 2012 - 08:30

    I’m only starting to understand how I should be using a router. There was a time when I implemented everything it said. Now I use it to get opinions on the best route and try to understand why it is recommended.
    Your description of retrospectively routing the previous 24 hrs describes my hopes for what I could learn.

    Thanks for your help, it’s much appreciated.

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