Youngsters top dinghy charts

Poptastic Gerald New looks at the climbers and fallers in the dinghy Top 100
While entries at UK dinghy class championships continued to decline in 2001, three of the top five positions in the championship rankings were taken by classes associated with young sailors - the Topper, Cadet and Optimist. Only these three classes plus the RS400 and the Dart 18 managed to attract more than 100 entries at their UK National Championship this year. Back in 1999 twenty-nine classes managed fifty or more entries at their UK Nationals with a total of 2096 dinghies. Last year only 26 classes broke the fifty barrier, involving some 2068 entries at an average of 78 per class. This year although 26 classes again reached the magic fifty, the total was down at 1922 an average of 74 per class - a drop of 174 dinghies in two years. Using the 60 classes that I have sufficient data for, the overall numbers remain steady; 1999 at 2946, 2000 at 3012 and this year 2968. But while they do not show any overall decline, they do not show any growth. So although the leading sail numbers at most championships continue to indicate new boats, it seems this is top competitors up-grading to remain competitive and the overall number competing do not show any increase. Classes with 50 or more entries in 2001 Continued with the winners, loosers.... page 2.. Where now for dinghy racing.... page 3.... PLUS the full ranking table....12345next ›last »