The 470 was designed in 1963 by the French André Cornu, as a modern fiberglass planing dinghy. The boat should appeal to sailors of different size and age. This formula was right, and the boat spread around the world. In 1969 the class was given international status and it has been an Olympic class since 1976. In 1988 the first Olylmpic Womens event was sailed, naturally in the 470.
Sailing and Racing
The 470 is equipped with spinnaker and trapeze, which makes sailing a real teamwork. The 470 is not difficult, but to be competitive, everything should be mastered to perfection. Tactically the boat is demanding as speed differences are small and fleets are usually big.
To sail the 470 a good physical health is enough, strength is not crucial. The competitive crew weight is 110 – 145 kg. This makes it ideal for both women and men. On the national level there are a log of sailors outside this weight range who enjoy racing the 470.
World and Continental Championships are organized every year with separate starts for Women and Men/Mixed teams. There are also a World Championship for Juniors and a World Championship. The 470 is used in regional championships, like the Asian-, Mediterranean – and PanAm Games. In the important international races the entries have to be limited. This develops good competition as qualifying races have to be organized in most countries.
In the World Championships there have been more than 30 countries represented. There are 65 member nations in the International Class Association and more than 40,000 boats have been built in 20 countries in all continents.
The class rules are strict, banning exotic materials and restricting rigging and fittings to reduce cost. The main objective is to enable variations in equipment to suit different crew size and sailing technique, but to keep the equipment at a reasonable cost.
Length Overall 4.7 m / 15’ 5"
Length Waterline 4.4 m / 14’ 7"
Beam 1.68 m/ 5’ 6"
Draft .5 m / 6"
Draft (CB down).5 m / 3’ 6"
Weight 120 kg / 264 lbs
Mast 6.78m / 22’ 3"
Boom 2.65m / 8’ 8"
Spinnaker Pole 1.90 m / 6’ 3"
Jib 3.58 sq. m/ 39 sq. ft.
Main 9.12 sq. m/ 98 sq. ft.
Spinnaker 13 sq. m/ 140 sq. ft.
Total Sail Area 12.7 sq. m/ 137 sq. ft.