International 420s are the intermediate training dinghy of choice for teenage and young adult sailors. With a very high level of inherent in-built safety, high stability and highly adjustable rig the 420 provides the ideal platform for either extending the skill level of junior sailors or introducing novice sailors to the sport.
The 420 has been around since the 1950s and is still the recognised world double handed youth class for sailors. The 420 is currently the class used to determine the male and female double handed dinghy world youth champion.
Of course not every young sailor wants to set the world on fire, in fact few do. Most want to be able to come down to the club on a Sunday, get some help improving their sailing in the morning, hang with their friends at lunchtime and go out for a fun and exhilarating sail in the afternoon.
For those who do want to compete at the top WA has a long and proud tradition in developing young champion male and female sailors in 420s. In 2006 a team of WA girls won the world youth championship in England . Previously WA teams have won the world youth championship in 420s a number of times.
A couple of key reasons behind the success our young sailors have enjoyed have been the robust nature of the class association and the very high level of coaching available in WA. We are lucky to have a very strong and active class association organising inter-club regattas as well as several world class coaches for 420s living in Perth .
The 420 is a strong and durable dinghy. The strength of the boat is in its very clever design. It encompasses immense strength, light weight and high buoyancy, making it ideal for sailors with a combined weight of between 110 and 145 kilograms. The great beauty of this is of course that the sailors can go through teenage growth spurts and not outgrow the boat. Some adjustments to the rig and you will see lightweight and heavyweight crews competing side by side in a variety of sailing conditions.
These same features mean you don’t have to spend big to get the latest and fastest boat. All 420s are the same design they were 50 years ago and many older boats still compete in and win major regattas.
SoPYC, as one of the major WA Swan River yacht clubs, is also a strong supporter of the 420 class in WA. The 420 lends itself to being sailed by either all male, all female or mixed crews. With approximately 10 boats sailing in the 420 fleet at SoPYC there is a wide cross-section of ages, sizes and skill levels, providing the ideal fleet to either enjoy sailing for the wonderful sport it is, enjoy making great friends with a common interest, or enjoy competing against some of the best young sailors in the country.
For more information regarding the 420 email the Club’s 420 Chairman, Serena Kipling on0404 024 080 or via email at email@example.com or visit the Western Australian 420 Association Website at www.420sailingwa.org.au. See also SoPYC 420 Face Book Group