There is online help available that describes how to set up a regatta, score it and printout the results.A manual, RaceSail.pdf is present after installation or it can be downloaded by itself. This file contains a list of problems that have shown up in the past.
When you create the division (menu item Regatta>Enter/Change Any Divisions...), make sure that the box "Has Start Time and/or Distance" is checked. If it's not checked, the program assumes that the division is just a cosmetic split of boats for a prize such as Seniors, Juniors, etc.. Divisions can be used for splitting boats into groups with different starting times if it's a handicap class. i.e. PRHF can have divisions, A starting at 11:00, B starting at 11:05, C starting at 11:10, etc. A boat can only be in one of these divisions that define starting time. It can also be in divisions defining a group for a separate prize. i.e. Women, Masters, Under16, etc. You can have an unlimited number of divisions of this sort. In the left-hand tree view, you can select the appropriate division node and the scores for just that division will be listed.
Select the Class (i.e. Ocean) and then use the Publish>HTML Web Page... In this select the Handicap.lua file that is a template for extracting information from the regatta file. This Handicap.lua (and a corresponding Onedesgn.lua) file can be tailored to provide the web page look that you want. A separate style can be set for the rows in the results for OddRow and EvenRow so different colors could be defined for alternate rows.
The File>Preferences... dialog sets options that become the default for any race class that is created after the defaults have been changed. It has no effect on any current created class. To make changes to a current class, select the class node in the tree so that the program knows which class to change and then select Edit>Class Options... It is this dialog that will change the options in a current class.
In RaceSail, divisions take the place of Optimist fleets. Fleets are used by ISAF to denote splitting a large class into fleets to reduce the congestion on the starting line. Create divisions for Red, White, Blue. Sort by birthday and use Edit>Division Assignment... to assign large blocks of boats to the correct division. Boats can be in as many extra division as you like such as Seniors, Women, USATrials, etc. Also since Optimist Red, White and Blue divisions are scored overall, make sure that the checkbox "Use Division Scoring" in the General Tab of the Edit>Class Options... dialog is unchecked. If this box is checked then each division will be scored 1, 2, 3, etc so there will be three firsts, three seconds, etc when the division results are printed. This is not according to Optimist class rules. See other question below.
Create the race class (select Portsmouth Handicap) and register all the boats of all types in the same class. Each boat is placed in a division that has a starting time. Portsmouth Yardstick doesn't need distance. Also create divisions Boy and Girl. Create a race and enter the start times for each division that needs one. Finish the race by entering the finish time of all the boats. You don't need to split the finish times into divisions. The program knows the starting time of each sail number. Then select the Boy division in the left hand tree and the winner will be shown with the smallest corrected time. Same with Girl division or any other subgroup that you want to define. For comparison of corrected times, the distances must be identical for each division. This technique applies to any handicap system with a finish time.
Optimist scoring is designated to be Overall. This means that if the boats in the first race in the Blue division have a score of 33, 54, 21, 22 in the overall order that they crossed the finish line, this score is to be carried over to the individual division score when that is displayed. The fix is to make sure the box labelled "Use Division Scoring" in the Edit>Class Options... General tab is unchecked.
The breakdown of groups in RaceSail is class, division and fleet. A class is a boat type or a scoring method such as Optimist, Laser, PHRF, Ocean. Within each class you can define divisions which are usually the groups to which you will award prizes. If you have a large class, you can break this down into fleets which can have their own Start, so reducing the number of boats that cross the starting line together. Fleets are defined in ISAF document on Expanded Sailing Instructions, Appendix LE Appendix C.
Fleets are usually colors and can be assigned on registration or better by selecting large groups of boats and using Edit>Fleet Assignment when all the boats have been registered. The Edit>Fleet Assignment... menu item acts on the group of selected boats. If you choose Edit>Select All, then the Fleet Assignment... dialog can do a random assignment of fleets or a sequential assignment, used for reassignment of the class overnight. If the fleets are colors in the order 1, 2, 3, 4, the sequential assignment will be done in the up/down order 1, 2, 3, 4, 4, 3, 2, 1, 1, 2, ..., rather than a cyclical order, this as specified by ISAF..
Select the Overall node from the race and export the results to a file. This will create a .csv file with one of the columns headed by Sail in the rank order of the race set just sailed. Create an empty regatta or open up the regatta that contains the class you are accumulating. You can clone the race class by Copy/Paste with the Overall node selected. This will produce a class with no results yet. Now with the class you want to fill with the rank order having focus, create a new race and select this in the tree. The choose the File>Import/Export>Load Results... menu item and load the .csv file that you saved previously. The sail number order will follow the old ranking. Each boat will be scored 1, 2, 3, ... in the new class. Alternatively, it might be quicker just to score a single race in the accumulating class, using the overall order of the racing class.
Laser Master scoring has a handicap (added for each race) of +3 points for an Apprentice Master (35-44), +2 points for a Master (45-54), +1 points for a Grand Master (55-64) and no points for a Great Grand Master (65...). If there are eight races, an Apprentice Master will have to add 24 points to their overall score To score this type of race, create a group with no races (Tools>Group Races...). Select the first age group, say the Apprentice Masters, and give them a score of three times the expected races on the first day. Do the same for the other groups. If there are to be three races on the first day, the Apprentice Masters will all have a base score of 9. On the second day or if the number of races was different to the forecast count, the handicaps must be changed. The trick to this it to always update the largest count first. Sort the group based on score and select the whole array of boats in the highest handicap class (click and then shift-click for the group). Change this count to the current number of races times the handicap. The reason for changing the highest handicap class first is as follows: Consider that there are classes with handicaps of 0, 1, 2 and 3. If the one handicap class is changed to a two for an extra race, then sorting by score will lump all the Grand Masters with the Masters. Take the three and change its score, since all the other scores will be smaller, so this cannot clash with any other handicap class.
Alternatively, create a separate race and score each boat using an RDG (redress given) score. If there are going to be four races, give an Apprentice a score of 12 (4 times 3), a Master a score of 8 (4 times 2) in the dummy race and so on. Make sure that the box for "Discardable" is unchecked. This entails far more work since each boat has to be given a score by a separate action. Using a group, allows a large number of boat's scores to be changed en masse.