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DRAGON FLEET AVAILABLE FOR CHARTER FOR ANTIGUA SAILING WEEK
Tuesday 22nd February 2011

The Antigua Dragon Association is pleased to announce that its fleet of eight Dragons will be made available for charter for Antigua Sailing Week 2011.  Individual boats are available at a cost of only US $2,100 for an entire week, including the Sailing Week entry fee.  The entire fleet may also be chartered as a package.  Please inquire for fleet charter prices.

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 10 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.

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 end of the Dragon’s Olympics era, the Dragons have gone from strength to strength.  The major reason for this has been the ongoing controlled development of the boat.

Originally built of wood, in 1973 a GRP specification was adopted.  Metal spars were introduced in 1970.  These changes proved to be major milestones in the development of the class.  Designed from the beginning to compete on equal terms with existing wooden boats, the GRP Dragons are incredibly stiff which is one reason why the boats have remained competitive at top levels for years.

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 is the most popular material, but both new and old wooden boats regularly win major competitions while looking as beautiful as any craft afloat.

Exotic materials are banned throughout the boat, and strict rules are applied to all areas of construction to avoid sacrificing value for a fractional increase in speed.

The key to the Dragon's enduring appeal lies in the careful development of its rig.  Its well balanced sail plan makes boat handling easy for lightweights, while a controlled process of development has produced one of the most flexible and controllable rigs of any racing boat.
Spars and sails are infinitely and easily adjustable while racing, allowing the skilful crew of three (including helmsman) 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.

The Dragon’s technical specifications are:  LOA 8.9 metres, Beam 1.95 metres, Draught 1.2 metres, Displacement 1700 kg (with mast), Mainsail 16 square metres, Genoa 11.7 square metres, spinnaker 23.6 square metres.

For further information about chartering the Dragons for Antigua Sailing Week, please contact the Antigua Yacht Club Marina at aycmarina@candw.ag  or the Antigua Sailing Week organisation at roc@sailingweek.com.
 


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