A Sabot is a simple small beginner dinghy approx 8’ long with a single sail. It can be sailed by either two children under the age of twelve or one up to sixteen years old.
An Optimist is a similar size to the Sabot with a small sailor. Children have an absolute ball learning to sail in these great little boats.
We sail a number of Sabot and Optimist fleets at the club. You can read more on our Learn to Sail page.
The first Sabot fleet sails early in the morning when the wind is usually lighter and more suited to beginners. This group is focused on those learning the basics with the help of the older skilled children. This works great and is a joy to see in action, as we have found children respond well when another child who has acquired the skills to race becomes a teacher and mentor to teach them how to learn to sail. At the same time adult coaches split their time between each boat out sailing.
The second Sabot fleet competes in Junior racing. Here they hone their knowledge of racing rules and advanced boat handling skills. This group usually finishes up before lunch.
The club owns a number of Sabots and Optimists which are available on a first come first serve basis and are free for club members to participate in the above club events. Children take the responsibility to move and rig the boats with the ‘assistance’ of parents and helpers and at the end of the day make sure they are washed and stored. It is great the way the kids all help each other as the adult ‘assistants’ take a back seat supervising.
Narrabeen Lakes is affiliated with the Southern NSW Sabot Sailing Association and we hold a Sabot event each year, typically the Sabot Australia Day Regatta. A number of our members actively compete in events at the zone, state and national level.