Yacht: Rainbow

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On May 15th, 1934, the Burgess designed  J-Class, Rainbow was launched at the Herreshoff Yard in Bristol, Rhode Island, USA. She was built to defend the America’s Cup against Endeavour in 1934.   The first 2 races were tough for Rainbow but in the last 4 races she beat the Challenger.  The owner, Harold Vanderbilt, laid Rainbow up in a dry dock and had her refitted.

In 1937 she was sold to Chandler Hovey and competed for the defense of the Cup.  Sadly for her, Ranger won and became the new defender.  In 1940 Rainbow was sold for scrap.


Dykstra Naval Architects were chosen to give Rainbow a new life. A repeat client, the former owner of Windrose of Amsterdam, showed his trust in the Dykstra team to be the Naval Architects and designers for this new J Class yacht. The 46 meter schooner Windrose of Amsterdam set the Trans-Atlantic schooner record at 10.5 days in 2005, the previous record of 12 days was set by Charlie Barr with Atlantic in 1905.

The 40 metre J Class Rainbow is built in aluminum and designed according to the JCA (J Class Association) maximum performance rules. She launched in 2012. After 78 years she sails again.

Since her launch, Rainbow has won multiple awards, including Sailing Yacht of the Year (39m+) at the Superyacht Awards and the European Spirit of Tradition class at the inaugural 2013 Classic Boat Awards.

Information courtesy of the J-Class Association

Designer: William Starling Burgess
Type of Boat: J-Class
Rig: Bermudan Cutter
Year Built: 2012
Built By: Holland Jachtbouw in Zaandam
LOA m / ft: 39.89m / 131'2"
LOD m / ft: 39.89m / 131'2"
LWL m / ft: 27.10m / 88'9"
Beam m / ft: 6.37m / 20'9"
Draft m / ft: 4.80m / 15'7"
Yard No:
Sail Stats Upwind sail area: 950 sq.m / Downwind sail area: 1500sq.m Sail No: JH2
Construction: Aluminium hull, teak superstructure and carbon spars
Air draft: 53.66m / Displacement: a.175 tons

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