Veteran junior sailing instructor Hugh Goodday of the St. Margaret’s Sailing Club in Nova Scotia writes the following about his Club’s decision to form a 420 race team:
“In recent years, the 420 has witnessed a decline in popularity in Nova Scotia and Canada. This is a direct result of the impressive design and clever marketing that have made the 29er the nationally recognized double-handed dinghy for youth. Nevertheless, the 420 is still the world’s top youth training boat. It is undeniable that learning how to race in a 420 is the ideal way to master the fundamentals of competitive sailing. Canada has lost its prestige on the international level with respect to competition in classes such as the 470, Soling, Star, Tornado and Etchells. This problem stems from a weak grass-roots movement—there is an overwhelming tendency for young sailors to jump right into a byte or laser while totally ignoring the excitement and education available with double-handed, full-sail set dinghies. While providing certain challenges with respect to the team dynamic (coordinating schedules, organizing compatible skipper/crews, transportation, etc.), the benefits of 420 racing vastly outweigh any cons.”
The 420 has been a fabulous training boat for our racers and, for those of them that wish to continue into collegiate racing after their Junior Club days have ended, their SLSC training will hold them in good stead. The 420 is the inter collegiate racing class.