by Iléana Bonnet-Conroy, avid family sailor & RYA Instructor
When I went on holiday with my family a few years ago, I wanted to introduce them to small boat sailing. My mum has always been a keen sailor, but my dad… not so much! So, I needed to find a boat that would accommodate for both beginner and advanced abilities. Lucky for me, RS Sailing had done all the hard work and created the RS Quest. A classic design that’s easy to rig and fun to sail!
The RS Quest is so versatile with its option to hoist a spinnaker (both symmetric and asymmetric) as well as the possibility to trapeze. Equally, it creates a safe space to learn how to sail thanks to its masthead flotation device, furling jib (SO much easier) and high boom! So, while mum is in charge of the jib, pivoting centreboard and maybe a spinnaker – dad can focus on the basics of going port and starboard. Being so spacious and comfortable is one of the RS Quest’s best features – we weren’t in each other’s way, so no arguments were caused that day! Safe to say, the RS Quest is the perfect family sailing boat for my parents, but my brother? He prefers the RS Zest.
My younger brother has a need for speed and likes to #sailitliveitloveit on the edge! Hence, the RS Zest has rapidly become his favourite. As a more compact boat small enough to handle solo but comfortable enough for 3, it’s definitely an instructor’s choice for hassle-free, fun sailing. Essentially, the RS Zest is a mini double-hander which gives him rewarding performance, builds his confidence and encourages progression. The fact that this well-designed dinghy is user-friendly, damage resistant and simple to use is what makes it perfect for the likes of my brother who just want to be on the water as soon as possible! With features like the lock up & lock down rudder system, pivoting centreboard and roller furling mainsail – rigging time is almost non-existent! Which means more time on the water overtaking my parents…