41.7 metre J Class sailing yacht Ranger is a truly special yacht – not just because of her classic beauty, but because she is the first J Class yacht to be built since their 1930s heyday.
Ranger was delivered in 2004 by Denmark-based Danish Yachts, and – unlike most other J Class yachts – she is built out of steel, and handicapped appropriately within the fleet. As owner John Williams puts it: "If there was a war, the safest place to be would be on board Ranger." The steel hull makes her incredibly sturdy, meaning that on the odd occasion that there's been a collision, the other yachts have come off a lot worse than Ranger. In fact, quite remarkably, in Ranger's 13 very successful years of regattas, she has never suffered any race-related damage. She is also kept lightweight, thanks to her Nida-core interior and carbon-fibre dog house, meaning she can glide through the waves at a much faster pace.
Ranger was built as a replica of the 1937 America’s Cup winner of the same name. This event was the last time that the huge J Class yachts would race in the America’s Cup, hence making Ranger that little bit more special. Like with the original yacht, the team behind the new Ranger pushed boundaries in terms of technology and speed. While appearing very similar to the original sail designs of aluminium and cotton, they were replaced with carbon-fibre to help with strength and durability. It clearly worked, as Williams races her at least four times a year every year, from the Caribbean to the Mediterranean, and has an outstanding track record.
You can see her in action at the St Barths Bucket here...