Boats

Dragonfly 28 Sport

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Quorning Boats has been building trimarans in Denmark for more than 40 years. Run by the father and son team of Borge and Jens Quorning, the company specializes in Dragonfly fast cruisers with a “swing wing” system that reduces beam by more than 50 percent for trailering or berthing.

The Dragonfly 28 is the smallest in the range. It’s available as a Touring 28 with aluminium spars or a Sport 28 with a taller carbon mast and Technora sails, which provide a lighter rig with 20 percent more sail area.

Expanding the Dragonfly to full beam during our sea trial proved to be a one-person cockpit operation that took less than a couple of minutes per side—no tools or heavy winding required. Pulling the floats back alongside the hull proved just as easy at the end of the day. A 10hp Honda outboard linked to the tiller provided reasonable handling in the marina and pushed the Dragonfly along smartly.

Winds blowing 10-16 knots provided perfect conditions for a test sail of the Sport version. We hit 18.7 knots on the GPS at one point and averaged around 17 knots on a long reach across flat water under full mainsail and jib—not bad for a 28-foot boat! There was little drama—besides the boatspeed, of course—with smooth acceleration and minimal heeling in gusts. Given more wind, I have no doubt this little “cruiser” would top 20 knots.

Hardening up onto a beat, the Dragonfly 28 proved to be more than just a reaching machine. A wide beam, light weight and a full centerboard mean that sail power translates directly into forward motion, enabling the boat to point as high and foot faster than many hot monohulls. Tacking is predictable and fairly quick, although I got caught out one time pinching too high in the waves, with the boat losing way and threatening to get caught in irons. The simple solution is to sail free and fast.

Heading back downwind, we hoisted the spinnaker from the companionway and threw in a few gybes. The huge Sport spinnaker demands respect, but caused no difficulties. At almost half the size, an optional Code O would be considerably easier to manage on a furler, with the principal disadvantage being poor performance on broader reaching angles.

The Dragonfly 28 Sport would make a super cruiser-racer for three crew. The boat also has a surprising amount in its favor for sail cruising, with wide trampolines for sunbathing and five cramped berths down below. Selling points include sensational performance on a 28-foot trailer-sailor that’s exciting and delightful to sail, beautifully built and conceived, dries out on the beach, and will not heel more than a few degrees. Minus points include the high price and cramped accommodations compared to most 28-foot monohulls.

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