Centreboard Division

Learn to Sail

Register Now for our Learn To Sail (LTS) Classes held at the SYC Algies Bay facilities
43 Gordon Craig Place, Algies Bay.

The 2023 Term 1 classes are now fully subscribed.  Please email us on office@sandspityachtclub.nz to register your interest should spaces become available.


We offer 8 week x 3hr courses in Term 1 and Term 4 of the school year for sailors ages 8-16yrs.

There are three levels: LTS1 Opti, LTS2 Bic and open fleet racing. 

Classes are held each Sunday morning, 9am-12noon (all levels).

On Sundays, from 12.30pm, there is the opportunity for any sailor, including adults to join in with their own boats, to make up a decent sized fleet for a series of short races. Focus is on fun, and along the way, learning rules. Finish 2.30-3pm. 

2023 Dates:

2023 Term 1

Sunday 12 February 2022 to Sunday April inclusive.  

During the year there are opportunities for extra coaching, extra practice days, destination sails and interaction with the SYC Keeler Division. All based on sailor enthusiasm, numbers and coach being available.


$85 Centreboard Membership Fee (6 months) plus $200 Lesson Fee for one sailor of the family.  The Lesson Fee is $100pp for subsequent sailors*

LTS1 = Opti supplied free of chargeAll other classes, sailors may provide their own boat or hire one of the Club’s O’pen Bic boats.

centre board sailing

Centreboard Sailing on Sundays

 The mornings are dedicated to 3-hours tuition of the Learn to Sail classes. Sailors arrive at 8.30am to get their boats and themselves ready for a prompt 9am on-the-water start. After sailing, all the gear and boats are washed down and put away. Then we have a 5 minute de-brief followed by a sausage-sizzle.

We ask that sailors and parents assist with launching and retrieving the sailing boats and the RIBS/patrol boats, washing down all the boats and helping to store all gear before leaving for the day.

By 12-noon we aim to be finished so that sailors and parents can have a half-hour break before the casual sailing/racing part of the programme beings for those interested in further practice. Afternoon sailing is for any sailor, including adults; this starts at 12.30pm with a briefing with on-the-water racing starting 1pm, finishing 2.30-3pm. 

learn to sail auckland

By keeping an eye on the fortnightly/monthly SYC newsletters, you’ll see when the SYC Sailing Division has races on and the opportunity is there to secure a spot on one of the ‘big’ boats and race regularly in the SYC Sailing Division races.

* We encourage sailors to stay in Optis until they have outgrown them, rather than see the Bics as the next step up. The 10 Bics were very kindly donated to us by various entities, and we are fiercely proud and protective of them. They cost a lot of money, and require a lot of respect, hence, not everybody is entitled so sail them. As such, potential Bic sailors must demonstrate their skills before sailing in them for the season. 

Bics are like skiffs; they require no bailing, are easy to rig; they are light and fast and a lot of fun. And the big appeal to parents of course, is that you don’t have to bring them home and store them. But! they don’t teach the fundamental skills than an Opti will. Lighter sailors can sail a Bic in light airs but simply don’t have the weight required to hike/stack out when the wind and waves get up; Hence, we use the Bics as the alternative to an Opti for novice sailors who are physically too big for an Opti; and as a stepping-stone to assist the undecided or uncommitted sailor or those not ready to commit to the purchase of a boat, so they can sail see the variance in sailing different boats and how much fun one can have. We have only 8 Bics available for hire, on a first-come-first-in basis providing we feel the age/stage of sailor is appropriate. The cost for this is $200 for the 8 week season. All costs include GST.

sailing classes


The Centreboard Division is run by volunteers, and parent participation is paramount. We need parents to help with launching sailing boats and patrol boats, retrieving them at the end of the class, washing down and putting them away. Whilst sailors are on the water we prefer that parents stay to keep an eye on the sailors from the beach or assist coaches on water. Those running the programme are not baby-sitters, and like to feel that parents are sufficiently engaged to want to learn along-side their children. As the sailors grow in skill-set and confidence they are able to do more for themselves, less parent help is necessary so you will not have to stay for the 3hr duration. You will be able to gauge this as you each week goes along.  For the duration of the 8 week course, there will be a roster, with small tasks on it requiring one parent of each sailor to do his/her bit. 

sailing classes

SYC Membership

Course fees above are based on a six-month Centreboard membership for the whole family, which covers use of the facilities, cost of maintenance, administration and general running of the division from the main Sandspit office located at Sandspit.

They also include affiliation fees to YNZ, cost of a handbook, insurance, running fees and coaching fees. We keep our fees at an absolute minimum in order to give every child the opportunity to join these classes. Members are kept regularly informed with emails/texts from Centreboard Division and receive monthly newsletters from the main Sandspit Yacht Club encouraging the whole family to participate in activities put on by the greater club. Centreboard Membership does not entitle one to a vote, but attendance at and participation in the SYC AGM is actively encouraged (AGM held second Tuesday in July, 7.30pm).

*Those whose parents already hold Full Membership to SYC, pay just $200 for each course.

Full SYC membership is available also.

sailing centreboard yachts


09 425 9008