About the International 29er Class

The sailing class promoting fun, fast, dynamic sailing!

Who are we?

We are the International 29ers Class Association and we are here to promote and develop 29er sailing around the world.

We organise and support annual world and continental championships, with all events focusing on top-level racing, safety and fun.

Importantly, the class maintains strict one-design control standards so that every team is racing with the same equipment. Find out more about the 29er boat spec.

Our Story

The 29er was designed and brought to life in 1998 by Australian skiff legend Julian Bethwaite.

By the year 2000, the 29er had already become a recognised World Sailing class, and the class has now grown from 200 boats back then to over 3000 today.

With nearly 200 boats competing at each World and European Championships we have a growing global footprint.

This is a class in which girls and boys compete on a level playing field. Over a third of the fleet in the last World Championships in Poland were all-female crews and we were proud to award the first World Championship title for girls in 2019.

The 29er is a fantastic place to develop your sailing skills and is such an exciting boat that it’s already proving to inspire a life-long passion for the sport in all who sail in it. In its short lifetime, it’s also become the springboard for many sailing greats who’ve gone on to compete and win at Olympic level. Read about our Alumni sailors here:


Julian Bethwaite and the birth of the 29er.

The 29er was conceived as a concept in 1992. The first version was born in 1996 and took to the water in 1997. Versions two, three and four swiftly followed between 1997-98. Finally, in 1999 the first shipment of 80 boats left the dock. The first World Championships took place in Garda in 2000, Julian sailed in number 256 with his then young 10-year-old son Harry. 2020 marks the boat's 20th year as a World Sailing recognised class. Happy birthday to the 29er!