The Draco 22RS is tested to the limit in rough Solent seas
The law of boat testing states that when you test a Nordhavn or a Hardy the sea is like a millpond but when you test a small, fast, open sportsboat you have a seething chop. And said law was upheld during our test of the Draco 22RS in the Solent.
A grizzly westerly was blowing against a steaming tide, churning the Hurst narrows into a boiling cauldron of peaks and troughs for the little 22 to negotiate. And negotiate them it did, with real aplomb.
Landings were soft and controlled and the boat generally felt rock solid, even when landing hard off the back of steep waves.
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The 200hp Yamaha is the perfect partner for the 22, delivering punchy performance and a wicked howl as it screams towards the top end of the rev range.
The rough weather limited our top speed somewhat as we managed just short of 40 knots on what, in reality, should be a 45-knot boat.
Mind you, achieving 38 knots into the teeth of this fierce chop is not to be sniffed at.
Despite the bowrider design the boat has good freeboard and a broad knuckle of rubbing strake to push water clear of hull.
The wet stuff only really made its way on board when the unrelenting breeze picked up spray and dumped it over the decks.
Pure and simple
Like its larger sister, the 27RS, the 22’s deck spaces are vey easy to negotiate and laid out in a safe and practical manner.
The two forward-facing helm seats are well protected and easy to adjust plus they can swivel around to face the aft bench and plug-in table.
The bowrider section, which is deep and safe and can be totally partitioned off from the cockpit to keep kids secure, has a perimeter of handrails to grab for, and storage underneath each bench with an optional cool box on the port side.
Any changes to make? I would definitely add some more cupholders or cubbies to the helm station as it only has one as it stands and a handrail around the windscreen, as fitted to the 27RS, wouldn’t go amiss here either.
Read our quick spin review in the November 2015 issue of MBY.
Contact: Go to Draco website for dealers. Web: www.dracoboats.com
- Attractive Scandinavian design
- High level of finish
- Talented hull
- Punchy performance
- Deep, safe decks
- Lack of oddment storage at the helm
- A grab rail around the windscreen would be good
- It's on the pricey side
Price as reviewed:
The Draco 22RS may be on the higher end of the price scale but you can feel the expense in the quality of the finish and mature handling in the rough. The bowrider layout works brilliantly and it is littered with sensible touches where parent company Windy's influence shines through; all in all a fun and competent family day boat.
Length: 21ft 9in (6.68m)
Beam: 7ft 9in (2.4m)
Fuel capacity: 30 imp gal (140 litres)
Displacement: 1.3 tonnes
Test engine: Single Yamaha 200hp
Top speed on test: 38 knots