Swans have always offered their owners the joys of cruising combined with the opportunity for racing success. This includes the first ever Swan model, the 36, launched in 1968. One such Swan 36 was skippered to remarkable success in regattas around the British Isles, and in particular at Cowes. Her racing achievements generated such a positive feedback that Nautor’s Swan rapidly established a reputation as the foremost manufacturer of high performance racing yachts; a reputation emphatically endorsed by Swan 65 Sayula II’s victory in the first ever Whitbread Round the World Race in 1973/74.
This heritage is as important in maintaining the status of Swan as the craftsmanship, excellence and expertise; the exacting design process and production; the use of top-quality materials and technological innovations; and, the comfort and safety of all the yachts. According to the Group Chairman, Leonardo Ferragamo, it is vital to respect the company’s heritage as well as maintain it. In this sense, it is essential Nautor’s Swan continues its evolutionary drive.
As part of its evolution, Nautor’s Swan entered the one-design world in 2001. Despite its racing heritage, this move was viewed initially with surprise. However, the Swan 45 model, drawn by German Frers, had all the hallmarks of a Swan. At its base, it was like all other Swans, a high-quality performance cruiser/racer competitive in handicap racing; its uniqueness, its one-design capability. The Swan 45 would be followed by the Swan 601, and then by the highly-regarded ClubSwan 42 in 2006. Developed in association with the New York Yacht Club, the 42 was commissioned as a one-design cruiser/racer for both inshore and offshore racing. As a result of it efforts, and success in the one-design field, Nautor’s Swan rapidly acquired valuable experience in designing one-designs and managing the resultant fleets. Carefully written and strictly enforced rules secured the success and longevity of the Swan One-Design classes while providing a template for additional one-design classes to be added.