470 (dinghy)

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470 blue.svg
Class symbol
470 dinghy.svg
Designer André Cornu
Year 1963
Crew 2 (single trapeze)
Draft 500 mm (1 ft 8 in)
1,066 mm (3 ft 6 in)
Hull weight 120 kg (260 lb)
LOA 4,700 mm (15 ft 5 in)
LWL 4,400 mm (14 ft 5 in)
Beam 1,690 mm (5 ft 7 in)
Mainsail area 9.12 m2 (98.2 sq ft)
Jib / Genoa area 3.58 m2 (38.5 sq ft)
Spinnaker area 13 m2 (140 sq ft)
D-PN 86.3
RYA PN 973
Current Olympic Equipment

The 470 (Four-Seventy) is a double-handed monohull planing dinghy with a centreboard, Bermuda rig, and centre sheeting. Equipped with a spinnaker, trapeze and a large sail-area-to-weight ratio, it is designed to plane easily, and good teamwork necessary to sail it well. The name comes from the overall length of the boat in centimetres (i.e., the boat is 4.70 metres long).

The 470 is a popular class with both individuals and sailing schools, offering a good introduction to high-performance boats without being excessively difficult to handle, but it is not a boat designed for beginners. Its smaller sister, the 420, is a stepping stone to the 470.

The 470 is an International Sailing Federation International Class and has been an Olympic class since the 1976 games.


The 470 was designed in 1963 by the Frenchman André Cornu as a modern fibreglass planing dinghy to appeal to sailors of different sizes and ages. This formula succeeded, 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 Olympic women's sailing event used the 470.

The sailor[edit]

To sail the 470, good physical health is enough; strength is not crucial, while world class 470 sailors spend a large portion of their time on fitness. The competitive crew weight is 110–145 kg, making it ideal for both women and men.


470 al via.jpg

World and Continental Championships are organised every year with separate starts for women and men/mixed teams. There is also a World Championship for juniors and a Master World Championship. The 470 is used in regional championships such as the Asian, Mediterranean, and PanAm Games. Entries are limited in important international races, encouraging more competition by requiring qualifying races in most countries.

2008 470 World Champions Erin Maxwell and Isabelle Kinsolving sailing upwind.

In the World Championships more than 30 countries have been represented. There are 65 member nations in the International Class Association and more than 40,000 boats have been built in 20 countries.

The 470 may be raced in a mixed fleet of boats, its performance being adjusted by the Portsmouth Yardstick handicapping scheme. In the RYA-administered scheme, the 470 has a Portsmouth number of 973.[1] In the US Sailing-administered scheme, it has a D-PN of 86.3.[2]


As a strict one-design class, the 470 is required to be built by a licensed[by whom?] builder. Class rules require that construction use materials of the 1960s era, most notably fibreglass with integral buoyancy tanks for the hull.[3]

Additional Specifications.[4]

  • Mast height: 6.78 m (22 ft 3 in)
  • Boom length: 2.65 m (8 ft 8 in)
  • Spinnaker Pole length: 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)

While the hull speed is just 5.1 knots, the 470 readily planes at much higher speeds.



At the Olympic Games, the 470 Class was initially an open class, but since the 1988 games there have been separate events for men and women. Since 2008 each consists of a 10-race series, with teams being awarded points on a point-per-place system, and each team's worst result being discarded. The top 10 boats qualify for the medal race, in which double points are awarded. The Australian team of Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page are the current Olympic champions.


Games Gold Silver Bronze
1976 Montreal
 Frank Hübner
and Harro Bode (FRG)
 Antonio Gorostegui
and Pedro Millet (ESP)
 Ian Brown
and Ian Ruff (AUS)
1980 Moscow
 Marcos Soares
and Eduardo Penido (BRA)
 Jorn Borowski
and Egbert Swensson (GDR)
 Jouko Lindgrén
and Georg Tallberg (FIN)
1984 Los Angeles
 Luis Doreste
and Roberto Molina (ESP)
 Steve Benjamin
and Chris Steinfeld (USA)
 Thierry Peponnet
and Luc Pillot (FRA)
1988 Seoul
 Thierry Peponnet
and Luc Pillot (FRA)
 Tõnu Tõniste
and Toomas Tõniste (URS)
 John Shadden
and Charles McKee (USA)
1992 Barcelona
 Jordi Calafat
and Francisco Sanchez (ESP)
 Morgan Reeser
and Kevin Burnham (USA)
 Tõnu Tõniste
and Toomas Tõniste (EST)
1996 Atlanta
 Yevhen Braslavets
and Ihor Matviyenko (UKR)
 John Merricks
and Ian Walker (GBR)
 Victor Rocha
and Nuno Barreto (POR)
2000 Sydney
 Tom King
and Mark Turnbull (AUS)
 Paul Foerster
and Robert Merrick (USA)
 Juan de la Fuente
and Javier Conte (ARG)
2004 Athens
 Paul Foerster
and Kevin Burnham (USA)
 Nick Rogers
and Joe Glanfield (GBR)
 Kazuto Seki
and Kenjiro Todoroki (JPN)
2008 Beijing
 Nathan Wilmot
and Malcolm Page (AUS)
 Nick Rogers
and Joe Glanfield (GBR)
 Nicolas Charbonnier
and Olivier Bausset (FRA)
2012 London
 Mathew Belcher
and Malcolm Page (AUS)
 Luke Patience
and Stuart Bithell (GBR)
 Lucas Calabrese
and Juan de la Fuente (ARG)


Games Gold Silver Bronze
1988 Seoul
 Allison Jolly
and Lynne Jewell (USA)
 Marit Söderström
and Birgitta Bengtsson (SWE)
 Larisa Moskalenko
and Iryna Chunykhovska (URS)
1992 Barcelona
 Patricia Guerra
and Theresa Zabell (ESP)
 Leslie Egnot
and Jan Shearer (NZL)
 J. J. Isler
and Pamela Healy (USA)
1996 Atlanta
 Begoña Vía-Dufresne
and Theresa Zabell (ESP)
 Yumiko Shige
and Alicia Kinoshita (JPN)
 Olena Pakholchyk
and Ruslana Taran (UKR)
2000 Sydney
 Jenny Armstrong
and Belinda Stowell (AUS)
 J. J. Isler
and Sarah Glaser (USA)
 Olena Pakholchyk
and Ruslana Taran (UKR)
2004 Athens
 Sofia Bekatorou
and Aimilia Tsoulfa (GRE)
 Natalia Vía Dufresne
and Sandra Azón (ESP)
 Therese Torgersson
and Vendela Zachrisson (SWE)
2008 Beijing
 Elise Rechichi
and Tessa Parkinson (AUS)
 Marcelien de Koning
and Lobke Berkhout (NED)
 Fernanda Oliveira
and Isabel Swan (BRA)
2012 London
 Jo Aleh
and Olivia Powrie (NZL)
 Hannah Mills
and Saskia Clark (GBR)
 Lisa Westerhof
and Lobke Berkhout (NED)

World Championships[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "RYA Portsmouth Yardstick List 2010" (PDF). Royal Yachting Association. Retrieved 21 August 2012. 
  2. ^ "Centerboard Classes". US Sailing. Retrieved 31 July 2012. 
  3. ^ 470 Class Rules, available at http://web.archive.org/web/20090509090940/http://www.sailing.org:80/1893.php. Archived from the original on May 9, 2009. Retrieved May 29, 2009.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ 470 Class Homepage, http://web.archive.org/web/20110616183926/http://www.470.org/content.asp?id=347. Archived from the original on June 16, 2011. Retrieved June 14, 2011.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]