You raise an excellent and very valid question. We have made the obvious slight change to the format for this year's MEBAR in that participant's are given a Target Speed (as ground speed) for Flight Legs rather than the traditional Target Time. We had effectively used this in past events when Flight Legs had "blind" Target Times, but then you were still flying to the cruise speed established in your Test Flight. This year, we felt it was time for a change in order to provide a different element to the event. It also removed the potential for using certain techniques to hit the Target Time as close as possible. I am not suggesting these were inappropriate techniques, but the changes we have made place more emphasis back purely on participant's flight planning and flying skills, which has always been an objective of the MEBAR.
A consequence of the change for us in the planning and setup for this year's MEBAR has been detailed research on the performance parameters of entered aircraft. This involved researching real world aircraft performance data, validating it against the respective aircraft in the sim as much as possible, reviewing submitted Test Flight data from previous MEBARs, and finally, using the submitted Test Flight time to identify any gross performance discrepancies. Admittedly, this is not a perfect science and is often limited by the availability of sufficiently detailed and accurate data. It also cannot fully account for the inaccuracy of the modelling in the sim. When formulating the groupings of the Aircraft Categories and then specifically allocating entries to a category, a conservative approach was taken to the benefit of the aircraft (and participant). This also took into consideration the known weather conditions, particularly on the latter Flight Legs, where they are more severe.
So, in short, I anticipated there may be some aircraft entries where this process was less optimal. I had suspected and anticipated the Canadair CL-215 specifically, could be one of these aircraft because of the available performance data. As a case in point, my research data suggests the stall speed for the CL-215 is 66 kts. Based on this, allocating it to the TP-IP category with a Target Speed of 135 kts seemed reasonable, considering I made certain assumptions about the cruise settings you used in the Test Flight when I compared your Test Flight cruise speed to the standard cruise speed for the aircraft of 157 kts at 10,000 ft.
As I said, I anticipated the Canadair CL-215 may have been allocated to a more conservative Aircraft Category them was optimal. In your knowledge of the weather conditions for subsequent Flight Legs, and if you feel the TP-IP category is overly conservative, which I acknowledge it could be, I am more than happy to reallocate you to the TP-HP Aircraft Category with a Target Speed of 150 kts (ground speed). If this is acceptable to you, could I ask you send advice via the "Contact MEBAR" form on the MEBAR web site so both Joe and I can get your request formally.
I hope this rather complex explanation thoroughly answers you question.