Ron Holland needs no introduction. He has spoken of his life to members at a packed out Library on Club night. This book charts his “unplanned” life from early beginnings when he started sailing and winning races aged 8 years in 13’ P Class at the Torbay Boating Club in the Hauraki Gulf to designing mega sized cruising yachts such as the 250’ sloop M5 and the 182’ ketch Ethereal. In between he has lived life to the max, always saying “yes” to the next opportunity and designed by the seat of his pants!

I loved his descriptions of his first sail with his father aged 6 years when they capsized, his description of a club as a “community of people engaged in a worthwhile project”, and his life changing experience of the 1979 Fastnet Race with Hugh Coveney, Harry Cudmore and Rodney Pattison when Golden Apple’s carbon fibre rudder shaft snapped when they were in the lead.

This passionate memoir and important record of an era of yacht design is an easy and worthwhile read. It has certainly whetted my appetite for another new book on yacht design by Dick Carter entitled “Yacht designer in the Golden Age of Offshore Racing”.



ISBN number: 978-1-7750968-0-1