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Jim Young Rocket 31

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I am looking for any information on this design. My son has just purchased one that is in the Netherlands and was supposedly built in England. Thanks for your time.

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Following an impressive career in the marine industry, one of the great New Zealand designers and boat builders, the legendary Jim Young, designed the Rocket 31

Camp Freddie, a Rocket 31 built and sailed by Greg Peck in the UK won every regatta she entered. She was the overall winner of Class One Cowes week in the UK in 1994. In strong winds. Her slightly lower spec. sister Zapata won Class Two. Camp Freddie then went on to win the Round Isle of Wight race against 1800 starters. The only New Zealand design to make such a coupe.

The boat is very beamy, which makes for spacious cruising and can accommodate a lot of people for a 30 footer.

Due to the wide beam, there's a lot of volume below, so could optimise for cruising, although this is a little more sparse inside. You will have a lot of fun racing this boat, but can still have friends on for a barbie. You will not find better racing value for this price.

This one is in great shape and has been regularly raced and cruised with a good maintenance regime coming out the water each year for 3 months.

She starts planning at 11 Knots and down wind with the big red kite she achieved 20 knots in force 5-6 in waves on Round The Island Race

These boat details are subject to contract.

Note: Offers on the asking price may be considered



Zapata went to Belgium then Nederlands so I’m guessing that’s the boat your son bought ?


Sounds like Greg peck kept Freddie and still sails it , could be worth contacting him for info .


A little more info on viva zapata




Herald on Sunday24 Mar 2007


THROUGHOUT his long career, Aucklander Jim Young has designed and built boats that set new standards for both innovation and performance. Young-designed keelboats have carved out an enduring place on the race arenas in this country and internationally over more than 40 years. His powerboats have included designs that broke the boundaries at the time, including the famed Vindex launch. Now the Young reputation has been further enhanced by another member of the family — Jim’s grandson Aaron.

Positive Touch, a Rocket 31 (Young 940) launched in 1982 has been bought by Aaron and restored to racing trim — not that the boat was ever less than competitive over 25 years of action. Aaron bought the yacht in Tauranga late last year where it had been raced for about 20 years, but not raced hard.

‘‘She was competitive, but tired,’’ says the new owner. ‘‘The first race we did was very light. We got the gun and handicap double which was great. Then, in a race just two weeks later when we were doing just over 19 knots soon after the start, the mast went over. That brought forward rebuild time.’’

Now Positive Touch has a new keel, new rig, new interior, new floor structure and new galley. Again in full racing trim, the yacht is competitive against the latest high tech race boats in the 9m (30ft) to 13m (40ft) range. Two wins in the last two starts, the latest on Wednesday night, sees the yacht set for a serious competitive programme.

‘‘We will be racing the boat as much as possible,’’ says Aaron. ‘‘As well as the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron and Richmond Yacht Club events, we will be looking at some coastal racing like Auckland-Tauranga and Auckland-Russell.’’

Grandfather Jim is seriously chuffed that Aaron has done the makeover to Positive Touch, which introduced to the world the ‘‘sports keeler.’’ Built by Cookson Boats, the first Rocket 31 was commissioned by Laurie and Jim Keane following an article in the June 1980 Seaspray magazine.

Because the new owners were performance dinghy sailors and not used to racing keelers, the designer sailed the yacht for them for the first years of her racing life in Auckland before she was sold to Tauranga.

The lightweight high performance method of construction used for Positive Touch, and the first Young 88 Tickled Pink, introduced a new era of yachts capable of high planing speeds downwind and across the wind, with the ability to foot it with much bigger yachts upwind.

Cornish yachtsman Greg Peck put the Rocket 31 design on the international map campaigning Camp Freddie, a sister ship to Positive Touch. In 1993 he won every regatta on the English circuit, including the Class 1 in that year’s Cowes Week regatta.

Class II honours went to Viva Zapata (Mike Bennett) a slightly detuned version of the standard Rocket 31.

Camp Freddie then went on to win the Round Isle of Wight race against more than 1800 starters, including maxis.

This previously unheard of performance by these two little New Zealand-designed yachts in the Northern Hemisphere sparked the now worldwide popularity of what is now known internationally as ‘sports boats’.

It irks the designer more than a little that the success of these two of his designs at Cowes 1993 received little recognition here, even in the boating press.

Now 81, Jim Young will be watching closely as his grandson campaigns that first Rocket 31 against all comers 25 years after her launch and further enhances the design’s reputation.

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I decided I wanted a big skiff and built a forty foot NZ designed flat out racer, using balsa cored ply, which only weighed three tons. It relied on wide decks (and trapezes) and crew weight to keep it upright, but we never tipped it over, and used to water ski (single ski) behind it! It was called BUCKLE UP and really was ahead of its time with asymmetric spinnakers and a very modern rig. The last boating rush of blood to the brain was with my old Balmoral 12 ft Skiff Club friend and competitor, Bob Oatley, to build a fifty foot wave piercing power catamaran which does 20 knots very economically with only 400 h.p. I dont need yachts anymore, because he has the super maxi Wild Oats XI which we have campaigned in Europe, and a mini maxi Wild Oats X which we race every Wednesday with a mostly geriatric crew on the beautiful Pittwater.


Buckle up .....Rockets everywhere0F36DE3D-F6F2-4998-92CB-62C6379EA9F9.jpegECC31C69-595E-421B-9EE7-9727F579472A.png


Now called flashback



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