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Home / Sailing / Yawls / Devon Yawls

Devon Yawls

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The Topsham Fleet numbers about 15 Devon Yawls who sail mainly within the Exe estuary. From April until September between two and four races are held bi-weekly at high tide on weekday evenings. There are also weekend series from April until November so it can be seen there is no shortage of racing.

Unlike the Cruisers the DYs sail as a one design level rated fleet so it's just the skill of the sailor and how well the boat is set up that counts.

Devon Yawl hulls measure 4.878m (16ft). The hull is made of GRP with the mould being taken from a wooden Salcombe Yawl. DYs have a jib, mainsail and mizzen (no spinnaker). The jib is flown from a wooden bowsprit and is poled out going downwind. The swivelling centre plate weighs 77kg (170lbs) and provides plenty of stability making capsizing a very exceptional event. The overall dry weight of the boat is not less than 431kg (950lbs).

The Exe Estuary is tidal with extensive areas of mud and sand visible at low water, however there is a deep-water channel which can be navigated with care in a dayboat at most states of the tide. At high tide the estuary provides a wide expanse of sheltered water giving ideal sailing/racing conditions but there is still a need to keep out of the shallows and away from the strong tidal streams and therein lies the challenge!

We're a friendly bunch so if you would like to sail in a Devon Yawl get in touch with the Yawl Captain or any of the skippers you meet down at the club.

Follow this link to the Devon Yawl website

Follow this link for Devon Yawl sailing tips on the DY website

Last updated 08:59 on 2 April 2024

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