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Club in Focus: Safety Bay Yacht Club

Published Wed 03 May 2023

Founded in 1947 on the shores of the picturesque Safety Bay in Western Australia, the Safety Bay Yacht Club (SBYC) is the oldest Yacht Club in its local area. Located less than three kilometres from Penguin Island, the waters for this off the beach class specialist club provide ample opportunity for the experienced and learned sailor to perfect their skills in windsurfing, kitesurfing, and sailing.

SBYC is widely noted as one of the safest places to learn to sail in Western Australia, with regular sea breezes during most of summer providing safe training and competition conditions. The club has access to multiple sailing areas that provide fantastic sailing conditions for windsurfers and kitesurfers of all skill levels.

A fantastic advocate for new and existing sailing disciplines alike, SBYC regularly hosts many a training or competition event on its local waters. In particular, SBYC is proud of the increasing popularity of its signature racing event – the Boss of the Bay, which has attracted statewide attention and placed a spotlight on the club and the local area.


Current activities focus on regular slalom racing for windsurfers and kitesurfers (twin tip racing) which has encouraged a stable but generally positive trend in membership growth.

In the last 12 months, and currently operating in an “on-demand” manner, the newly developed Discover Sailing Centre at the club has put through over 40 participants undertaking any of a number of courses offered, which include learn-to-sail programs (dinghy, windsurfing, and keelboat), recreational skipper’s tickets (RSTs), and marine radio. Following completion of some recent Start Sailing One courses, around 30% of course graduates purchased a ‘Laser’ (now ILCA) dinghy and joined the club.

SBYC is confident that the steady interest from the community for engaging in wind-sports will continue, and are hopeful that the club with continue to build on the set benchmarks over the next 12-18 months.

Classes supported and types of Sailing:

SBYC is a specialist club that focuses on windsurfing and kitesurfing but is reinventing itself with its newly developed Discover Sailing Centre (DSC). Programs that are actively supported by the club are:

  • Kitesurfing: twin tip racing
  • Windsurfing: slalom racing
  • Out There Sailing and various learn-to-sail programs in optimist and laser dinghies
  • Out There Sailing, keelboat experience and learn to sail


Key Club Events:

A welcoming and active club with a matching membership base, SBYC hosts multiple annual and once off events each year. These include:

  • Regular in-season kitesurf twin tip racing
  • Regular in-season windsurf racing
  • Boss of the Bay downwinder event from Port Kennedy to Safety Bay (late Jan/early Feb each year).

Recent Challenges and Successes

Sand movement has presented a significant challenge to the club in distancing the club house from the water’s edge. Local businesses have helped significantly in donating used conveyor belt matting to help line the access paths so as to improve the ability to safely transfer equipment to/from the beach.

This outside involvement and partnership has proven how important the club is to the local community, and demonstrated the passion that its members, volunteers and administrators have for the club and its future.

A fantastic, welcoming club with a significant amount of specialist training and events on offer to its members and locals alike, SBYC is integral to the fabric of its local community. There is no doubt that the small but mighty SBYC will continue to go from strength to strength in the future.

Commodore: Laura Lilly