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10 September 2017 om 12:54

Pieter Heerema and his team Lars Hendriksen and Claus Olesen won the Dutch Open Championship 2017 in the International Dragon Class.


Pieter, Lars and Claus fostering the historic Dutch Silver Dragon which is the trophee for the Dutch Dragon Class Champion since 1947.

Defending Dutch champion 2016, Quentin Strauss, Nigel Young and (European champion 2017) Pedro Andrade  scored the second place.

This team won both the Dutch Open 2015 and 2016.

Dutch top team NED 422, Jan Bakker and sons Olivier and Dominic, scored the third place.

Jan, Olivier and Dominic Bakker had two winning scores out of 7 races. An excellent performance of this strong Dutch team.



The 2017 Dutch Open Championship was sailed during four days at the Markermeer from Muiden. The RNLYC hosted this championship in providing excellent race management, friendly administration, great catering services, smooth craning and many volunteers to manage the busy activitees at the club. Especially the parking of cars, Dragon trailers and parents with Optimists and Lasers on tow.


 The volunteers scoring the finish of the fleet


Jachtservice Muiden, the next door neighbour of the RNLYC, did an excellent job as well in craning out 20 Dragons in a record time (with the help of members of the RNLYC)  and offering their premises to prepare the boats for transport.



The Dutch Dragon Association is very grateful for all this work done behind the scenes and is proud to have shown the International Dragon community what we can deliver in Holland.


Eric van der Bandt took many pictures of this event. All pictures can be seen and ordered at his webshop via :

See also and read Stavros’ Blogs about this Dutch Open 2017


Previous reports about the days sailing & socializing during the Dutch Open 2017


The positive flow of the Dutch Dragon Class has it’s spinn off. A high quality fleet with several former Dutch champions, the European champion 2017 Pedro Andrade on board the GBR 803 with Quentin Strauss en Nigel Young to defend the title,  the revival of the famous NED 247 with Hay Winters, Richard van Reij en Stavros, Pieter Heerema with his Now Way Back Team NED 412 Lars Hendriksen and Claus Olesen, the Belgian Champion Ben van Cauwenbergh and his BEL 80 team, the Brown family with the GBR 770 and of course the top sailors of the Dutch class, like the team NED 422, NED 345, NED 275, NED 316  and many routiniers and new teams  who joined this championship. 37 boats is a record since at least 15 years.

Day 3

With oscilating winds coming over the city of Amsterdam and around the Ile of Pampus racing was quite difficult. Especially to chose the correct side of the course. As a famous (old time) Dutch Dragons sailor used to say: “when it’s difficult, stay in the middle with a minimum of short tacks” . And so was the ‘Game on’  for today. Even with a long tack to the lay line top sailors met the sailors who normally sail in the back field. Much to the supprise of both teams. It was also the bad luck of NED 247 who was in the lead for the final beat. A 3rd was the result of the choice of the course.

In race one the Bakkers ( NED 422) hit the jack pot; in race 2 it was GBR 803 who was the winner. NED 412 consolidated his 1st place relative to GBR 803, NED 247, NED 345 and NED 422. It will be one of those teams who will become the Dutch Champion 2017. We will see more tomorrow after the dices have been thrown. When the sun shines, the breeze will be light and variable and the sailing smooth, but difficult.

Day 3 ended with free beers after the races, however no bitterbals, given the Dragon Dinner scheduled in the evening. It was a great meeting of Dragon friends and their families in the cosy atmosphere of Brasserie Herengracht in Muiden. Drinks in the evening sun along the river Vecht, BBQ buffet,  and old friends among which Bram de Wilde and his wife Brigitte (NED 311). Bram is recovering from a major physical issue. It was great to see Bram and Brigitte among their  Dragon friends.

With day prizes and 20 prizes for the lottery, the RC members present and every team went happy home sweet home to be fresh and fruity for the final day.

We are very grateful to our sponsors:

  • Pig & Hen bracelets ( Dominic Bakker)
  • Jachtservice Nederlands /  (Bas Spaargaren)
  • Lijnespecialist (for a genua sheets and dynema siscors)
  • Code Zero for shirts & key rings ( Marc Blees)
  • Top Dek Zeilen ( Bart Peeters) for nose covers, dock fenders and boat covers
  • Tijssen Watersport ( Liesbeth Tijssen voor de beste sortering watersport spullen in de randstad)
  • en een anonieme sponsor voor Drakenbloed



Day 2

Day 2 started with a gale warning for the IJsselmeer and Markermeer Bf 7 with heavy rain. The fleet had to wait untill 12:00 hrs for the updated forecast for the afternoon. At 12:20 hrs local time notice was given to start racing. The fleet went out (apart from a few ‘sun shine teams’ ) to prepare for the third race. To much surprise the IJsselmeer seemed calm with only around 10 – 12 knots of wind. However with severe rain. The start of race 3 was in the middle of a serious shower. NED 393 ( Richard Blickman, Pouwel Brouwer and his daughter) was a bit eager to get moving. They were seriously over the line at the gun and had to correct their start manoeuvering through  the fleet at low visibility, which they managed well.


After the first beat this race was cancelled due to a major windshift of over 35 degrees.

The restart was well done. Even a bit prudent by all sailors. It was a dramatic view from motorboat Waterwacht to observe the fleet under a blanket of a dark cloud.

The race became a battle between GBR 422 ( Dmitri Bodarenko & team) and NED 412. It was GBR 422 who stayed in the lead after the 2nd beat. On the final run down both boats passed the gate at the same time. NED 412 must have seen more wind left of the course, where GBR 422 went to the right. Slowly but slowly NED 412 moved forward and controlled the final beat to the finish. GBR 803 was 3rd. BEL 64 (The Daltons) also raced a superb race and consolidated a 4th place.



GBR 770 also sailed a solid race and finished 5th, before NED 247 and NED 277. Perhaps it was the thorn shoulder muscle of Marc Reijnhout that handicaped NED 345 or is was just an off day for this top Dutch team. We will see more on day 3.

Again a great serie of pictures taken during day 2 by Eric van der Bandt.


Pictures day 1




Day 1 is in the pocket with two races in great sailing conditions. Steady wind from the west, however with a tendency to shift with gusts when clouds rolled in. In the modest opinion of the crew in the NED 398 the right side of the course seemed to pay of more than the left side. Anyway that was on the right side where we won several times a number of places. We were too far from the leaders to observe their tricks. Stavros, who is helming the NED 247 and scored with Hay and Richard an overall 4th position on day one, will certainly write more in his blog at the IDA website about the weather.

Anyhow: as we said before to Pieter Heerema: you are Back Again from your No way Back. And how !! With two 1 scores Pieter, Lars and Claus are the leaders for the 2017 Dutch National title after day one.

NED 345 with Reinier Wissenraet, Pim ten Harmsen van der Beek and Marc Reijnhout second. GBR 803 with Quentin, Nigel and Pedro third.

Many pictures were taken by Eric van der Bandt and are shown on the screens. A film will also be produced, however the drone  is temporarily out of service but saved from a crash. Parts are shown at the screens in the bar of the RNLYC, the host club for this championship.

Day 1 was closed with Beer, Bitterballen and a Nasi Goreng /Saté skippers meal, which strengthend the bond among the over 100 Dragon sailors from the UK, Belgian, Germany and of course The Netherlands.