One of the greatest things about our boat is that it offers a huge amount of fun and family pleasure to all ages yet at the same time it satisfies the desire for excellence and a physical test at the highest level in the Olympic Games. The ILCA dinghy is something very special. Over 200,000 owners have been attracted to its simple charm and continue to be attracted at a rate of nearly 4000 new boats per year.
Seeing 15 and 16 year old youngsters, fresh out of Optimists, getting a thrill out of sailing an Olympic class boat in full control with the ILCA 4 or ILCA 6 rig is as exciting as listening to the stories of 60 year old Masters recounting their wild rides on Pacific rollers during the 1997 World Masters Championship in Chile.
The ILCA dinghy is challenging and it is rewarding whether it be at club level or the Olympic Games. When you take your 10 year old boat out for a local race the challenge is to work harder, hike longer, be smarter and sail better than the other ILCA sailors. At the end of the race you count the number of boats behind you and you are rewarded with the knowledge that you beat them fair and square by your own skill and effort. Even if there are no boats behind you the challenge is to go out next time knowing that you have the same equipment and the potential to improve.
And there is a bonus! It is quick to rig, it keeps you fit and is inexpensive.
When you look in the centre pages of the Handbook and count ILCAs sailing in 115 different countries all over the world and you see that ILCA has achieved the highest ever country entry at the Olympic Games, and see how many countries are entering ILCA World Championships, you perhaps realize just how great our little boat is and why it is so important to look after it with a strong class association.