Fleet 4 505, report on year one

This spring the Nepean Sailing Club (NSC) supported the Ottawa 505 Fleet in purchasing a 505 to promote fleet building and encourage participation in the class. The boat maintenance, sailors’ selection and mentorship were managed by a team of three 505 sailors: Paul Place, Shona Moss and Marie Gendron. Following are the program highlights:

  • Quick statistics: 
    • The boat was sailed by over 15 individuals (several repeat users); 
    • Used at four regattas and two training clinic’s.
    • Sailed at 7 Wednesday evening dinghy racing nights at NSC;
    • Several practice outings by users of the fleet boat throughout the summer.
  • One of the objectives at the start of the season was to see the boat sailed at both NSC regattas. We had two different teams sail both the Nepean One Design and Nepean FANFARE Regatta. Notably, the team that sailed at FANFARE had several strong finishes. The boat was also used at out-of-town events during the fleet’s annual clinic at the Kingston Yacht Club, the 505 Canadians at CORK and at the 505 East Coast Championships in Sakonnet, Rhode Island. One of the highlights was that the fleet boat provided an opportunity for two former NSC sailing school instructors to experience the 505 fleet throughout the summer. They decided to participate in the 505 East Coast Championships and were able to borrow the boat to sail at this event. 
  • The Fleet boat was used at the annual 505 Espoir Camp held in late September. The Espoir Camp is an annual clinic organized by the fleet to provide an opportunity for new and young sailors to try the class. Participants are usually sailors from the local 420 and ILCA youth race teams. Boats are lent to the participants for the day by members of the fleet. This year the camp had 13 participants and 6 boats.
  • Structured and unstructured mentorship was provided to those using the boat at regattas by 505 fleet members. This was often done by pairing the new sailor with a more experienced crew or driver with strong experience in the 505 along with on land debriefing after races. 
  • The team feels as though it has provided an opportunity that did not previously exist for experienced sailors to test the boat. It has generated more interest in the class mainly from youth sailors in the Britannia Yacht Club and NSC dinghy programs along with other dinghy sailors at NSC. The fleet remains the most active and competitive dinghy fleet at NSC. We had one new boat join the fleet this year and another one is set to join next year (currently 14 boats in the NSC dinghy yard). The fleet boat contributes to this activity and growth in the fleet. 
  • The 505 Fleet Boat team is looking forward to continuing the program next year and building on the success from this year while taking stock of lessons learned.     
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