• Try Yachting

    3 hours
    Experience the magic of sailing on Sydney Harbour on one of our comfortable yachts. This short lesson introduces you to the exciting sport of sailing in a safe and controlled way.
  • Discover Yachting

    1 day
    Spend a fabulous day sailing on Sydney Harbour aboard one of our comfortable yachts. This is an excellent way to gently learn the ropes, meet new friends, and have a whole lot of fun in the great outdoors. Please choose one of our scheduled dates or enquire below to book it as a private event for your group.

Meet our staff

Experienced, friendly and professional.

Meet our team of experienced and highly qualified coaches and instructors.

These professionals have a wealth of knowledge and share a commitment to providing quality instruction in a friendly and supportive environment. 

From the founders to every one of our instructors, we share a passion for sailing and the ocean. 

Want to work for Flying Fish? Find out more about the options here

Andy Fairclough

Founding Director
AMSA Master 24, RYA Yachtmaster Examiner, RYA Cruising Instructor Trainer, RYA Dinghy Coach Assessor, RYA Windsurfing Trainer

Andy grew up sailing and windsurfing, which inspired his interest in the ocean. He went on to study oceanography and worked as a senior lecturer at Universities in the UK and Spain.  

In 1996, Andy and fellow windsurfing enthusiast Andrew Lorant spotted a niche for professional education in the burgeoning sailing and watersports industry. They founded Flying Fish from a small apartment on the Isle of Wight, aiming to offer vocational adventure sports training worldwide. Their first course was a windsurfing instructor program in Barbados.

Over twenty-five years later, Flying Fish has grown into a thriving international training business known for quality and innovation.

‘I have fond memories of the early days in Barbados, with more windsurfing and less office time!’ says Andy. ‘Today, I am proud of Flying Fish’s growth and grateful to our many excellent staff.’

Russell Bonner

Operations Director
AMSA Master 24, RYA Yachtmaster Instructor, RYA Cruising Instructor Trainer, RYA Windsurfing Trainer, RYA Dinghy Coach Assessor

After ten years in the London design industry, Russell took a career break and joined Flying Fish to do a windsurf instructor traineeship in Vassiliki, Greece. He never went back!

He says, “I decided to trade the material comforts of mainstream life for the opportunity to acquire skills that would stay with me for life.”

After his Flying Fish course, he spent a few years working as an instructor in Greece and Spain before returning to Flying Fish to work as an instructor trainer.

Russell has now been the Operations Director for Flying Fish Australia for many years.

In his free time, Russell can be found surfing in Manly, windsurfing in Greece, or playing his guitar. 

Mathew Ackroyd

Chief Watersports Instructor
RYA Windsurfing Instructor, RYA Dinghy Senior Instructor, RYA Powerboat Instructor Trainer, RYA Yachtmaster and Cruising Instructor

Matt is the versatile, ever-popular, hands-on face of Flying Fish watersports in Sydney. As Chief Watersports Instructor he mixes his time between teaching courses and managing a busy fleet. 

He is also an accomplished yachtsman and can be found running some of the Yacht courses. 

Sailing since his college days, Matt decided to make a career out of watersports.

Before moving to Australia, he worked as a Senior Instructor in Greece and then as Assistant Chief Instructor of a watersports centre in Spain. 

He then worked in China as an adviser for Vanhangs first RYA centre.

Tim Palmer

Chief Yacht Engineer

Where would we be without Tim and his exceptional skills?

Tim Palmer, a toolmaker by trade, can fix just about anything.

But with years of experience as a Grand Prix Motorbike engineer, he is an absolute wizard with anything mechanical, especially diesel engines, which is a godsend for us. 

Tim can be found rushing around yachts at Middle Harbour Yacht Club and is always cheerful and helpful.

If you get to spend a few hours with Tim, you will learn a lot in a short space of time. 

Will Frost

Instructor and Examiner
RYA Yachtmaster Instructor, RYA Yachtmaster Examiner, Diesel and Outboard Engine Instructor

Aircraft Engineer turned Chippy and Isle of Wight kitesurfing/windsurfing/surfing legend – Wil Frost -joined us in 2014 for a Yachtmaster Offshore Fast Track programme. 

Now, he is a freelance Yachtmaster Instructor/Examiner and Engineering Instructor for us in Sydney.

In his own words, ‘Old and bold but still got it, some of it anyhow’!

Jim Wills

Freelance Instructor and Examiner
AMSA Sailing Master, RYA Yachtmaster Instructor, RYA Yachtmaster Examiner

After a lifetime of sailing dinghies and occasionally bigger vessels when he could, Jim gained his Yachtmaster qualifications, then Cruising Instructor, Yachtmaster Instructor and Yachtmaster Examiner qualifications soon after that and joined the team at Flying Fish as a freelance instructor.

 Jim retired from working as an emergency medicine doctor and hospital clinical director after 40 years and now delights in teaching sailors how to get the best out of their yachting safely and enjoyably.  

When not teaching yachting, Jim is the Director of Education for Forster Surf Life Saving Club and enjoys spending time with his wife, children and grandchildren!

Ivan S

Ivan Signorelli


After a long and successful career in the Brazilian corporate world Ivan Signorelli came to Flying Fish in 2012 for a career break and to get his Yachtmaster. 

Little did he know that six years later, he would have completed several Sydney to Hobart yacht races, and be working full time for Flying Fish as the skipper of Fish’s luxury yacht, Calypso.

george team member

George Martin


George Martin joined Flying Fish Australia as a RYA Senior Dinghy and Powerboat Instructor in 2014 after two seasons of teaching in South France.

Wanting to progress in the sailing industry, George joined our RYA Yachtmaster Offshore programme and got his certificate in 2016.

Now, as a Yachtmaster Instructor George is working full time teaching the Yachtmasters of the future.

When asked what the best part about the job was, he said “I enjoy the challenge of taking on brand new students from all walks of life and working with them to develop their skills.”


Una Wood


Una joined Flying Fish Australia with four years of instructing experience. She has worked in a variety of different centres, based mainly in Europe, for companies such as PGL and Neilson, but last winter found herself further afield working in China for Vanhang Sailing. Whilst out in China she took part in multiple training videos for their race squad, as well as assisting the centre to help maintain their RYA status.

Professional instructors and fabulous yachts.

Flying Fish employs a team of highly qualified, friendly and professional instructors and operate a range of fabulous training yachts.

We offer scheduled Fast Track training packages for Yachtmaster Coastal, Offshore and Ocean certification.  If you are an experienced Day Skipper you can join our Dayskipper to Yachtmaster Fast Track course. All our programmes can be customised to suit individual needs.

Middle Harbour YC
barefoot sailing adventures

Want to join our team?

If you want to join the fun and excitement whitle having the time of yhour life, then get in touch.

We’re always on the look out for new instructors that can share our passion for teaching and fun.