All newcomers to the sport and to the Club are encouraged to complete a GISBS (Get into Small Boat Sailing) course run in the Club’s Sailing Academy Puffin Pacers. This gives participants the opportunity to assess if they wish to continue sailing without any major financial committment at the outset. Once this has been completed, they can then move into the Pelican Section training programme conducted by the Club coaches.
Second hand Pelicans sell for between $500 and $3,000 depending on their condition, age and hull type, i.e. wood or fibreglass. Pelicans are advertised for sale on the Club’s Junior Notice Board. The cheaper, older wooden boats are perfectly adequate for the first two years of training , however new fibreglass hulls are available locally from an authorised Pelican Sailing Association builder and cost approximately $4,000 to complete. The Club also has some Pelicans it hires to children for a restricted period whilst they consider the purchase of their own boat. With a boat ready to go, children can move straight into the Pelican Section training programme which is a comprehensive, structured programme, fully supervised by trained and certified coaches. The programme takes non-sailors through a series of skill based stages, both theoretical and practical, until a satisfactory level of competence is achieved both from a sailing and safety aspect. Training starts with on-the-beach theory, followed by practice on the river and encompasses the rules of racing and race tactics with each sailor being allowed to advance at their own pace into the three structuredtraining groups. These are:
Bronze Fleet - For beginners who have undertaken a GISBS course, which gives them a thorough grounding in the basic parts of a dinghy and theory of sailing combined with elementary boat handling.
Silver Fleet – For the regular racers who need advanced skills, particularly relating to strategy and tactics of racing and the rules of racing.
Gold Fleet - For more advanced sailing techniques, spinnaker handling and introduction to racing.
Registration forms can be obtained from the club office. After registration, training commences each Sunday morning with a briefing at 9.00am in front of the Junior Clubhouse. Following the briefing the sailors breakup into their groups and await specific instructions about the days training from their coach. Once sailors have reached the required level, they are eligible to compete in Club races which are held every Sunday afternoon throughout the season. These take place on a selection of predetermined courses on the Swan River within the vicintiy of the Club.For more information on Pelican Sailing, contact the Pelican Section Chairman, Tim Putt on 0408 815 883 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Pelican Association Website at www.pelican.org.au