Individual Yacht Histories and Recollections
The following section is being prepared for the history of yacht ownership, location and achievements sourced from AIDA, Clubs and Individuals to be recorded. Many members provide recollections of yachts they have owned, sailed on and/or competed against. This is an attempt to keep those anecdotes recorded. It is a work in progress and the ongoing commentary and feedback is welcome.
Kevin Bates of NSW recently made contact enquiring about several Dragons built and owned by his father, George Bates. He recalls that:
Marjorie Anne DKA 6 was built in 1951 in their back yard in Northbridge Sydney. Records show that her last known whereabouts was Queensland.
Echo DKA 41 was likely built in the same back yard. AIDA records indicate she was built in 1951. In 1969 she appeared to be renamed Blue Jacket VI and at that time was owned by D Wilcock of Point Piper NSW.
Lynette DKA91 was built in 1962 at Clareville Sydney on Kevin's uncle's front lawn and then launched into Pittwater. The records in 1992 showed that Lynette was then owned by Henry Roesinger in WA and then by 1992 was owned by R Katnich of Myrtle Bank SA.
Austin Rugless recalled that he sailed with Rocco Katnich on Lynette in the 1980's at the RSAYS. One of many incidents Austin remembers is "popping the headsail in a squall (probably 1983), and sailing Lynette downwind on only the mast as the wind was so strong. A few minutes before running her aground in the Port River (not a lot of steering control with no sails up) we were rescued by the motorboat Des Corcoran and towed upwind to a safe location where we could tie her up and hop off for a few bevvies while the squall died down. Two yachts sunk in the river that day, but not Lynette and that is testimony to Roccos skill".
Marjorie Ann and Lynette were named after Kevin Bate's mother and sisters middle name.
Kevin's father George was very proud of his boats' beauty, as his mates would testify. His words to Kevin every time he fitted the mooring lines were “watch the brightwork”.
If you have any recollections of the George Bate's built Dragons, please email AIDA.