Jan Gougeon was a visionary, ingenious, and a great innovator who could see beyond boundaries, one of a few people to really have changed the boatbuilding game in his lifelong quest for speed. This is how boat builders, designers, sailors, and iceboaters recall Jan. A natural engineer, Jan became an accomplished boat designer and builder who was always thinking about his next boat. His vibrant, boyish enthusiasm lit up the room. Jan was a fierce competitor who shared tips and technology openly, offering astute and encouraging advice to novice and veteran sailors and builders alike. Continue reading →
Above: Meade and Jan’s completed Gougmarans, shallow-draft power catamarans on Dick Newick-designed hulls.
Cover Photo: Brothers Meade & Jan Gougeon aboard their power catamarans with Dick Newick-designed hulls — GOUGMARAN and MAGIC CARPET.
In 2003, my brother Jan and I began talking about building a motorboat. This would be a first for the brothers, who up to this point have focused all our efforts on sailboats. Just a few years ago, it would have been inconceivable that we would ever take up powerboating. But time and circumstances change one’s views, especially as we enter our senior years. We have always regretted that major parts of our home waters, the Saginaw Bay of Lake Huron, Michigan, have been too shallow for our sailboats. Some of the most attractive parts of the Bay with the best wildlife have been off-limits to boats that draw more than 18 inches. Continue reading →