Boat Timer – where do I start?

What does it do?

Boat Timer exists to make timing a lap or finish easier in a sailing race. Writing down times on paper as several boats finish near each other is difficult, but in the app you just press a “Finish” button.

How do I run it?

Boat Timer runs in your browser, so you just go to

There are options in the app to install it so you have an icon on your desktop, but you do not have to use these for Boat Timer to work.

There is no internet or phone signal – can I still use it?

Yes. You need the internet to open Boat Timer the first time, but after that it can be used without the internet.

Can it run on my phone?

Not really. It is possible on some phones, but the screens just aren’t big enough to record the boats.

What about a tablet?

Yes. The touchscreen makes it a quick way to record finishes.

A word of warning – Apple devices such as the iPad can be used, but they are not as good a choice as an Android tablet for some technical reasons. In particular, the export and backup options do not work on an iPad. However the timing or a race and viewing results do work correctly.

If you have an Android tablet you can use either the Chrome browser or the Android app for Boat Timer.

What sort of laptop can I use?

Just about all of them. Ideally you should install the Chrome web browser (even on a Macbook). But a variety of systems should work, including Windows 7 & 10, Apple Macbooks, Chromebooks and various types of Linux. An up-to-date version of the Chrome browser is the best way to get a good Boat Timer set-up.

I have more than one start in my club races. Will Boat Timer cope?

Yes. In the “Race” page you can add as many starts as you like. You get results for each start.

Does it do results of handicap races?

Yes. You set each start in a race to use a rating system like Portsmouth Yardstick. This will be used automatically to produce a results table at the end of the race.

Does it upload results to the internet?

Your club can sign up to Boat Timer “Cloud Services” in order to sync information with the internet. This gives your sailors online entries and results on the web as soon as the race is over. The Cloud Results Service calculates race results on handicap (for races using a rating system) and gives you a series or event table, based on your discard and scoring choices.

Clubs can get online race entries and instant race results using Cloud Services for a small monthly fee.

Is Boat Timer free?

Yes. You can use it to time races free of charge – no registration required. The app produces results at the end of the race (including corrected times if you use a rating system) which can be printed off or exported to a CSV file.

How can I print the results table?

There is an “export” option in the results for the HTML format (a web page). If you export the results to that format you can open the file in your browser and print the page. As it is an HTML file on your computer you do not need the internet to see it.

Can I export the results to Sailwave?

Yes. There is an export to CSV format option in the results. You can use that CSV file to transfer results to another scoring system like Sailwave.

2 Replies to “Boat Timer – where do I start?”

  1. Hi the app looks great I have been having a play with it, at our club we all start at the same time using average laps and handicaps, is it possible to enter all boats into race 1 and then rather than a start time ( ie 10.30) you could set your as normal and on zero hit the start button and then run the race for the designated time and use the lap and finish button as you already have available.
    Thanks Dave Thomas

    1. Hi Dave, sort of… Boat Timer has to have at least one start for each race, but you can change the time of the start whenever you like – even after the race. So as long as you record the finish times for each boat you can change the start time and the scoring system afterwards. Hope that helps. Ian

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