The National 12 class in the UK has been the breeding ground for several particularly creative and free-thinking modern yacht designers including Bol d’Or champion designer Jo Richards and DSS inventor Hugh Welbourn. With few constraints and hydro and aerodynamic efficiency paramount, this non-trapeze class has seen imaginative solutions to very diverse questions. Now it is the setting for about as big an efficiency challenge as you could ask for… Designer Gavin Willis talks to current national champion Graham Camm

National 12 evolution since 2009 – and the concept of shape shifting
The National 12 is a well-established UK development dinghy class. The boats have a light hull, just two sails and a crew of two. The first 12s hit the water in 1936 and designs have continued to evolve ever since. Modern boats are carbon-foam sandwich while many beautiful wooden vintage boats are still sailing, particularly on inland waters where a well-sailed older design can still be competitive in the right conditions.

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