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Redesign the world rankings lists?


Horton
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Every year about this time I start thinking about who I think the “BallOfSpray Skiers of the Year” are. This involves me calling @MattP to ask where the scores are and what really happened. Without fail at this point I complain about the standings lists. The basic IWSF ranking list (whatever that list is really called) favors the highest scores at any record event. The Elite List is weighted by the amount of money on the line at specific events.

 

Both lists have their detractors.

 

Some would say the standard list favors the skiers who look to ski as many record events as possible and are shopping for perfect conditions and the best drivers. (Most Ballers would say this sounds like a lot of fun.) If a high level skier hits 20 or 50 rounds and gets 3 magic scores, that is his or her score for the list. It is a ranking of lower pressure and more casual scores done under record rules. This is basically the same as the AWSA ranking list.

 

The Elite List assigns a value to cash prize events largely based on the amount of the cash prize. The purpose of this list is to show who can win in adverse conditions and when the pressure is on. In theory this is a more important list. It is more of a “Pro Ranking”. The problem is that the amount of cash to be won is not always an indicator how adverse the conditions are. With a limited number of Elite events and with varying point values the end results may or may be influenced by more than a dash of chance. Some years this list make perfect sense and some years it is just wacky.

 

If you were to rank the worlds best and have to defend your methods how would you do it?

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What a great "winer" project.

 

one way is to assign a point value to every major tournament based on prestige, then take their raw score/average and multiply them together

 

for an example: a victory at Moomba or the masters garners a score of 5 second is a 4

 

Where a victory at a smaller pro tournament might only garner a 2.5 for first and 2 for second.

 

ten meet total might be a 43 points then multiply it by 111.7 or whatever their buoy average is

then you get a total score and the winner is?

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A question old as the sport itself: it needs to be based on Who you beat, or how close you were to the winner, and who that winner is. If someone wins a tourny in Timbuktu with a huge cash prize, but Nate, willy, etc aren't there, well congratulations , enjoy the cash. But your Ranking goes up a little.

Same guy, 2nd in Moomba behind Nate by 1/2 buoy, ranking goes way up. It's done in ski racing. It's a mathematical equation . The hills (difficulty) have a factor as well. Moomba, masters could have a 1.2 factor or whatever ( take a percentage based on course records).

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The challenge is that the number, quality, locations, and prize money for pro events has been wildly variable the last several years. The events vary on what events are contested, jump, trick slalom. What also varies is who attends, This is a factor of location, expense to travel there versus the potential prize money and sponsor exposure.

 

Idea: create a committee (think like NCAA football , basketball) (maybe we can get Condi LOL).

 

Establish a ranking factor like 1-10. The committee votes for a factor for each pro event.

 

Multiply the placement with some formula by the event factor and add them up and you have a score.

 

Any event that provides prize money counts. Event has to be sanctioned at least 30-60 days in advance to the committee has time to award a factor number.

 

Idea #2: Tax every cash prize event like 10% of the purse. That amount goes into a pot that establishes an end of year prize purse for the top 3 ranking list winners in each event. Eventually after a few years you might be able to attract a "tour" sponsor.

 

 

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@Horton‌ I suggest we create a baller list and rank people by number of tournament wins. Not the score, just the number of top podium finishes. I think that will eliminate the variables that affect the two other lists. As someone once told me all that matters is top of the podium.
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The point @Drago makes about who you beat is pretty compelling. I have a rough idea of how I want to design my ranking list formula but all of these points so far are valid factors.

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I didn't think I was off topic. Forget the rankings! However If you really want a more fair ranking system forget the $ and weigh every single score in every single tournament (pro or otherwise ) not just the top three scores. If they MOP tough, it counts as a score. Require a minimum number of tournaments to be in the top 10 etc. and rank all tournaments according to their significance. Major tournaments weigh higher than an R in Timbuktu and so on. Make it really complicated so no one but a computer can follow it. Willing to bet the really good ones stay at the top no matter the requirements or conditions. Might be accurate one year maybe not the next. All you're really doing is playing with statistics. Remember though, statistics lie and liars use statistics. Rankings are really more about seeding, The battles in the bigger shows sort out the real winners.

 

 

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I started on this project for real today. Holy crap that is a lot of darn data. The VBA I wrote to clean it up about melts my pc. I am sure there is a better way but VBA and Excel are the tools I like. (I could do it fast and dirty but it would not be as repeatable - defendable)

 

I am starting with the 2013 data to see how different my results will be from the Elite list.

 

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I think I finally have a plan for the BallOfSpray Rankings list. If I really get it done in a timely fashion or not is another issue.

 

For fun I have done a quick analysis on all 34 mph skiers in the world based on a 3 score average from ELR tournaments. This is draft data and I need to triple check it but it looks right. A few notable names. The ladies are in bold.

 

1 Rogers

2 Mapple

3 Newbey Ricci

4 Leach

5 Halt

5 Miller

7 Raley

8 Ross

9 Favret

9 Jaquess

11 Badal

12 @skidawg‌

 

15 McClintock

16 @Chad_Scott‌

 

20 Stinky

 

22 Shaw

23 @matthewbrown‌

 

25 @Kevin Bishop

 

28 KLP

 

42 Truelove

43 Coble Eller

44 @MrJones‌

45 @Dirt‌

 

49 Hensley

 

52 @Sethski‌

 

71 DUMALA

 

77 @schroed‌

 

85 Costard

 

110 Haw

 

118 Goode

 

127 @Horton‌

 

135 @Bruce_Butterfield‌

 

159 @richarddoane‌

 

168 @MS‌

 

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when and if I am sure this data is 100% correct and complete I will publish all the data. The hard part is that I am working on an automated process to gleam exactly the data I want from the 40k lines of source data. Not really that hard but takes a little time.

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@mike_mapple‌ I am glad you asked. The goal of messing with this data is to publish really unbiased rankings. The non-Elite data is an extra but I want to get it right.

 

AM has a 4, a 5 & and a 6 at 10.25 (41) (70 + 71 +72= 213)

 

JR has a 4.5 , a 5 & and a 6 at 10.25 (41)(70.5 + 71 +72= 213.5)

 

If you think I have the data wrong please say so. We ( @MattP‌ and I) are going over the data a number of time to make sure we have it right.

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Well my code is not agreeing with me tonight. It does not like 43 off for some reason.

 

Bottom line (i think)

AM has 3 scores of 1 @ 43 (73 +73 + 73 = 219)

JR has a 2 @43 a 1.5 @ 43 & a 6 @ 41 (72+73.5+74 =2.19.5 )

 

I will TRIPLE check and reissue the whole list this week. @mike_mapple‌ thanks for finding the error

 

 

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For those more interested in who you beat, as opposed to absolute scores, the numeric ranking used in Chess is a model that has been adapted to many other .. err .. "sports." I am going to assume no one cares to learn more about that, so send me a PM if you do.

 

P.S. Somewhat surprisingly, I do not play Chess and really don't like it. When I try to play I spend all my time thinking about how I could write a computer program that would be soooo much better than I am.

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Snow skiing works that way. Bit of a complicated formula that looks at the seeding points of

the top 10 in the race, and their placements. Additionally, races other than World Cup have

a defined minimum 'penalty', so some unknown can't suddenly leap onto the US Team.

 

There are 7 or so updated seeding lists that come out during the season, which is something

well beyond water skiing at the current time. Although, the IWWF is working on a real-time

seeding list, or was.

 

Nastar is a bit simpler, where your time is compared to a local Pacesetter's time and his %

difference back of the top person (Ted Ligety?), to figure out what time Ligety would have

gotten on that course.

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