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Native 38: The trimaran which is going back to the future

Published on 01 february 2016 at 0h00

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Richard Newick’s trimarans have become the stuff of legend. But is their number limited to the existing collectors’ fleet, or are we likely to see them back in build in boatyards? Only the future will tell, but we have wanted to see the launch of a restored Native 38 model to get a positive response to this hypothesis and proceed to test it, (almost) as though it were a new model.

The Wizard of Maine (Newick’s nickname) was an Ocean Surfer!

In 1979, following receipt of the order for Moxie (the 50 foot winner of the 1980 Transat and Newick’s third trimaran after Gulfstreamer and Rogue Wave), Dick left St.Croix in the Virgin Islands where he had honed the naval architect skills which had given rise to his first trimarans. He later moved to Martha’s Vineyard where he was to encourage architects, sailors and builders along the US east coast, the creative melting pot of the period. By the late seventies, Newick was universally known among the racing elite (specifically American and French) around whom there gravitated a few specialist journalists and a core of enlightened talent. Newick only enjoyed partial racing success however, as this wasn’t necessarily the architect’s primary aim. For him it was more a question of personal accomplishment. His visionary interpretation of designs originating in Polynesia, both intuitive and calculated, were combined with real on-water experience (in 1955 Dick Newick toured northern Europe by kayak!). The immediate and spectacular use of possibilities offered by the Gougeon brothers’ new West System technique (wood-molded ...

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