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The oldest video footage of 505 racing dinghies

by Magnus Smith 5 May 04:00 PDT
First 505 hull completed, just awaiting varnishing and fitting out © Jack Chippendale

Our video archive is fully searchable, and linked to all the clubs and classes in our database. It is updated weekly with the latest videos of sailing, but here we delve into the past, and round-up everything that shows early racing in the 5o5 class.

The oldest footage we could find was from Emsworth (UK) during the 1950s and it is a long video covering many classes. You may not have an hour free to wallow in nostalgia, so feel free to skip ahead according to this guide, since the first two 505 moments are mere seconds:

  • 24 mins - See number 49 launching, with her age also betrayed by the cut of the sails
  • 49 mins - a reefed 505 can be briefly seen
  • 54 mins - newer models launch and are seen racing (keep going till the end)

Next up is a wonderful promotional film for Fairey Marine, outlining their range of dinghies, in the late 1950s. The 505 features at 2m45s but only btiefly.

Then we move to the sixties, with 505 racing in Argentina, 1969 with spinnakers flying. This silent footage is courtesy of British Pathé.

There is only one boat in this next video, but it is fun to see a 505 in Stockholm, 1971. Someone is having a great time singlehanding it! (Note, half-way through the video it changes to a slideshow of still photos.)

Now we move to a series of great footage from the Worlds, starting in 1973 with the 505 World Championship in Hong Kong (see also some extra video and event photos and results).

The next year the event was in Marstrand, Sweden, 1974 (see also event photos and results.)

Then we move to the eighties, with the 505 Worlds in Cork, Ireland, 1982. (See also event photos and results.)

We now have nine links from Youtuber Ebbe Rosen, covering the 505 Worlds in Enoshima, Japan, 1985. Take your pick!

Ending our eighties focus is the 505 Worlds at Felixstowe, Great Britain, 1989. (See also event photos and results.)

A random selection of archive 505 material from the 80s and early 90s now. There are some land-based sailor quotes as well as plenty of on-water blasting. Amazingly, for 1990 there is even some brief masthead footage! No GoPros in those days.

In the early nineties we next have the 505 European Championship at Quiberon, 1990.

Last of all we move to the UK for the 505 World Championship at Mount's Bay, 1995.

What of the rest?

Do you know the location of any Five-Oh videos that show racing fleets from the early years? We would love to share these with other sailors. You can submit video links to us for immediate review.

Keep watching with:

The UK's leading dinghy historian recorded a series of videos about the life of John Westell, the 505's designer. (Skip to part 3 if you are interested in the Coronet, the forerunner to the 5o5, or to part 4 for the 505 story starting.)

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