I was surprised to see a 35 Nauticat at 180 which is similar to Hans Christian 38 at 192, Hallberg Rassy 35 at 180, Island Packet 35 at 186, Tayana 37 at 180, and much better than a Westsail 32 at 213 or Island Packet 32 at 198.
Does the Nauticat PHRF of 180 in comparison to the others listed make sense to you?
Despite the ratings listed, I would guess that the Nauticat will be
slower than all these other boats, including the W32, on most points of
sail and in most conditions.
PHRF ratings are initially arrived at by a little educated guesswork,
then generally refined by observed performance. For a type of boat
that is commonly raced, the rating will be a pretty good indicator
of a boats potential. All of the boats listed would have difficultly
sailing anywhere near their ratings on a windward / leeward course.
I doubt that a N35 would ever make it to a windward mark under sail
in light air. Most of these boats will only have a rating, because they
decided to enter a point to point race. Many of these sorts of boats
that are listed in the So Cal PHRF roster have a rating mainly because
they plan to compete in the Newport to Ensenada Race. They are not
raced any other time, so there is no emperical basis to their rating.
If the race happens to be a windy reach, these boats may sail to their
rating and then some. This one reason why So Cal PHRF wisely uses
a three number rating system with ratings for Bouy W/L, Random Leg,
and Off the Wind. Under this scheme, I would give the Nauticat 35
provisional ratings of 264/ 192/198.