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With 14 boats in the fleet, Kestrels are the second biggest class at the RTYC.

This 65 year old design by Ian Proctor is ideally suited to the tidal river Tay and provides great cruising, racing and training abilities in a lovely handling boat.

See the kestrels in action


Whilst it has the accolade of being the first ever sailing dinghy made of glassfibre, it's design and structure has been updated regularly, utilising modern materials and fittings.

The Kestrel was designed and always intended to be a boat of reasonably high performance, but not a flat-out speed-at-all-costs type. She was intended to appeal to people who wished to race with their families sometimes, and to give them a chance to compete on even terms without needing to have crews of extreme athletic ability. At the same time it is one of the fastest non trapeze racing dinghies around, capable of tremendous performance off the wind.

Whilst the spinnaker is not large, because of its hull shape will pop up and plane in medium winds and upwards. In a blow, it's a real hoot! You cannot fail to come ashore without a big smile. The boat fit-out is user friendly with every control to hand.


The Kestrel is a great boat for improving your sailing skills. The RTYC has a large beginners training fleet but once you have mastered the basics, step up to the Kestrel to further improve your sailing skills. It is a beautiful boat to sail in all conditions. It has an alumininium centreboard and great hull stability so it's quite stable. If it does capsize, the Kestrel is easy to right and the twin self-bailers speedily remove the water. You'll be back up and sailing in no time.

During the year, we typically hold 4 Kestrel specific training days ranging from helping new crews get up to speed to tuning days just before the nationals.

Most Saturdays throughout the year, there are club sailing days with full rescue cover and instructors on hand to offer tips and help.


For those keen sailors wishing to compete in races, we have a great variety of events at the RTYC. The club holds many evening and weekend racing sessions as well as holding the Scottish Kestrel Championships and every 2 years the Kestrel Owners Association holds it's National Championships here.

The boat performs very well to its PY 1040 handicap and sailed by a confident crew will have a lot of success in all wind ranges. Kestrel's regularly collect prizes in club handicap racing.


The Kestrel has roomy cockpit, comfy crew positions with a large stowage area under the foredeck making it ideal for day cruising.

Utilising the tides in the Tay, our Kestrels can sail long distances both up and down the river. With such a lovely, easily sailed hull shape, the Kestrel is a great cruising boat which can cover the miles with safety and ease.

Last updated 16:20 on 2 July 2024

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