Once sailors have enjoyed racing and training at their home club and have experience of racing at other local clubs through their IOCA regions the next step would be to consider whether to apply for an RYA Zone Squad. The RYA run a winter training programme from November to May and to see which zone your club is in please visit the RYA Zone Squad Zone Squads are usually the first squad a sailor gains a place in and to do this they must attend 3 local events in September and early October. Further information on Zone Squads can be found by clicking on the RYA Zone Squads link on this page.
For more experienced racers IOCA runs, in conjunction with the RYA, four squads over the winter months. The RYA National Squad, RYA Boys Squad, RYA Girls Squad and the IOCA Squad. Sailors are selected for these squads based on their performance at three specified ranking events (Inlands, Late Summer Championships and End of Season Championships) which take place from May to October. The selection policy is produced based on strict guidelines and recently has been updated to ensure that there is a 50/50 split between boys and girls achieving a squad place. The training may include some residential camps and usually comprises of 5 or 6 training weekends. Training provides sailors with advanced teaching and opportunities to sail at International regattas with IOCA coach support. The class agrees a selection policy for these Winter Squads with our independent selectors and publishes this. The selectors then offer squad places based on this policy.