International Class Dragon Sailing Yacht Restored by Steve Waldron

The Dragon was designed by Johan Anker in 1929. The original design had two berths and was ideally suited for cruising in his home waters of Norway. The boat quickly attracted owners and within ten years it had spread all over Europe.In 1937 the Gold Cup was presented to the class by the Clyde Yacht Club Association. This quickly became one of the principal championships in the class and a prestigious trophy in the world of competitive yachting.

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The Dragon’s philosophy of gradual evolution within one-design principles has produced a boat with state of the art rig and boat handling controls, reducing the learning curve for sailors transferring from other classes and making the boat flexible enough to cater for every level of ability.The Dragon class remains one of the few top level racing classes where sailing skills still predominate over crew weight and fitness. These are just some of the reasons why yachtsmen of every age and every standard are attracted to the Dragon.

Dragon Class Specifications

One sail is enough to make Dragon ownership the goal of many sailors’ racing careers, while for others the class provides a lifetime of challenges. The International Dragon, A truly thoroughbred racing yacht. In 1948 the Dragon became an Olympic Class, a status it retained until the Munich/Kiel Olympics in 1972. It remains the only Olympic yacht ever to have a genuinely popular following outside the Games. Since the Olympics the Dragons have gone from strength to strength. The major reason for this has been the ongoing controlled development of the boat. The Dragon’s long keel and elegant metre-boat lines remain unchanged, but today Dragons are constructed using the latest technology to make the boat durable and easy to maintain. GRP (introduced in 1973) is the most popular material, but both new and old wooden boats regularly win major competitions while looking as beautiful as any craft afloat.

Spars and sails are infinitely and easily adjustable while racing, allowing the skilful crew to optimise the boat for any conditions, and removing the need for an optimum body weight that characterises so many other classes.Dragon races cannot be won by brute strength. The Dragon’s design philosophy has made it a class where extremely close racing is the norm, and where races are won by the crew’s mastery of the conditions and tactics on the course rather than by speed advantage.

For more information on Dragons check out: nadragons.org.

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