Naja is a sailboat that was designed by Sylvestre Langevin, French naval architect who designed Elf Aquitaine, the winner of the the Route du Rhum in 1982, and built at the Whisstock yard in the 80's. I own a Naja and would like to use this platform to gather information on the Najas that are sailing today around the world and display pictures of the boats.
"Fleetwood" is Jack van Ommen's sailboat. His web site is probably the most comprehensive on the subject. One can see and read the various steps in building Fleetwood as well as a detailed account of Jack's trips around the world.
Jack built 4 Najas, so he is definitely the authority on this fine boat.
For those of you who read French, there was an article written on the Naja by the "Loisirs nautiques" magazine in 1979. The authors were very enthusiastic about the boat and praised the shipyard for the quality of the materials and the overall performance of the boat. At the end of the article, there is an interview with Georges Whisstock, general manager of the shipyard.
In his 1982 book, "Best boats to build or Buy", Ferenc Maté offers elaborate descriptions of more than 26 sailboats that he describes as beautifully designed or best built. The 9th entry titled "If I were King of Bjazarstan" presents the Naja.
Here are a few lines found in the book:
"...the celebrated French naval architect Sylvester Langevin, who designed the magically fast trimaran Elf Aquitaine (which, among other things, holds the transatlantic sail speed record) and the Whistocks Boat Yard of Woodbridge, Suffolk, England, have collaborated and come up with a beautiful thing called Naja."
"Naja' aggressive good looks are highlighted by her teak decks. With her fine entry and shrouds well inboard she should be an excellent windward sailer and with her light displacement of only 6,200 pounds on a 27 foot waterline she ought to fly downwind"
One interesting comment from Mate is this one: "I am, however, unsure about one thing, and that is whether the dread of wood boat owners regarding toredo worms is applicable here." I believe we can all rest assured this is a non issue. These boats have been around now for more than 28 years and some ( Fleetwood is a fine example ) have sailed around the world without having any problem whatsoever.
This book is available in bookstores and at Amazon.com
Here are a few links to Najas that are for sale or were sold:
A particularly splendid one that was sold and according to the ad was finished to a very high standard for the Paris boat show. I would like to hear from the new owner. I tried to contact the sellers with no luck.
A beautiful Naja owned by David Whittock. Here is what David wrote when he sent the pictures:
Here are the pictures of my boat taken in Holland. One was taken by myself while waiting for the lock to open, the other two while moored in Veere which is a small town situated at the Veeres Meer end of the Walcheren Canal. I hope this will give you details of the boat. The person in the boat is my friend Brian who usually sails with me as my wife does not like sailing and chooses other places for her holidays. We hope to be going to Holland again this year and try further north maybe as far as the German border.
Bonita is now back from Verchères where she was restored by Jean-Pierre Fournel of Vexcel Yachting . Jean-Pierre is a wooden boat lover, an artist and an exceptional ebenist. He has renovated/built several boats and was featured in L'Escale, a Quebec nautical magazine, for the lobster boat he built in the 90's.
Bonita is getting a new teack deck, one coat of fiberglass on the hull and she will be ready for my trip to the Saguenay river next summer. Progress of the work can be seen here.