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Delta: another mahogany racer par excellence

February 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

Delta side

Delta is an 18 ft. Class 225 cubic inch Class Ventor (Apel) designed racer built by Minett-Shields in 1936. She was originally created for a customer on Lake of Bays who won a World Championship with her at the Canadian National Exhibition in 1937. Delta was originally powered with a 175 h.p. Lycoming engine. Her hull design is still used today. Delta, fully restored and operational, is still an exciting boat to watch as she reaches into the 60 mph range.
Delta at Clayton
Delta stern

The design of Delta, patent #2, 126.304 could be purchased from Minett Shields in varying stages of completion at incremental price increases or as a finished boat.
A semi finished hull could be purchased for $790, a complete hull for $1,575 and a “ready-to-race” boat with the Lycoming engine could be yours for $2,450! It is a testament to Bert Minett’s craftsmanship that this boat is still with us in 2016, eighty years after her “birth”. Some would say that this very rare Delta type design is the most sought-after wooden boat ever built world-wide.
Delta 6

The early  photo below shows “Astrea” one of the three boats apparently built to the 18 ft. Ventnor (Apel) design by Minett-Shields.  It is conceivable  that Astrea might be Delta, in it’s earliest manifestation. There is one  noticeable difference however: canvas, rather than wood, is used as a stern cover,  presumably to reduce the weight of the boat.


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