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David Thomas is president of the EOA. Although not as young as he was, he is still an active boat designer. The Elizabethan 30 may be considered his first commercial success but he went on to make his name by designing the "round the world" British Steel boats, Sigma 33, 36 and Fastnet capable 38, and many highly successful Hunter yachts. His Hunter Sonata and Impala are the treasure of many a family and the most successful sportsboat ever, 707, was his design. The Sigma 35 designed in 1990 reflects the changes in racing rules (10 crew to be race competitively) but mum and dad could make quick cruising passages.
He also designed for the BT Global Challenge. One of his vessels with steel hull, described as efficient and easily driven with a fine entry forward,. and stainless steel decks was later convert for Artic Expeditions.
He not only designed sailing monohulls but also he was a consultant on the hull design for the Stealth sports catamaran and his latest design is the Bradnam Launch, was described as:
classic lines though reminiscent of the thirties are in fact a happy
coincidence as the underlying concept is more akin to modern ideas on energy
conservation than to creating a replica of that era.
The design brief was born out of a desire to improve on the gas guzzling performance of the average GRP motor cruiser whose "Deep V " shape is dictated by having to move a heavy displacement over the water at high speed, thus causing a huge amount of wash disturbing the tranquillity of the surroundings and irritating other users, particularly at a low speed.
David Thomas, the designer, is well known for his sailing yachts in which the disciplines required to achieve good performance are somewhat more demanding with the limited power available from the wind. For example, a modern 25ft racing yacht will develop from its sails about 15hp and with this limited power achieve speeds in excess of 12knots. With his experience and the help of a computer aided design programme, he has applied these disciplines to the design of this easily driven low wash power boat."
David Thomas not only designed the Sigma 33 but also won the National Championship and many other trophies in his own boat Circe. Sailing his own Elizabethan 30, Liz, he nearly won the Round the Island race more than once; he was second by a mere 20 seconds in the year 2000.