Brian Pearson suggests that Duncan of Melbourne should take a look at the designs of Joel White in his quest for a wooden racing shell.
"Joel White is a favourite designer of mine - Wooden Boat Store sells plans for his Bangor Packet here, plus a few additional designs," he writes.
It's a lovely boat (picture above from the Wooden Boat Store site) and Joel White is a legend, but lofting is required to build it and the skill level is described as 'advanced', which would rule me out for one. I am more attracted to the next design in the Wooden Boats catalogue, Kingfisher by Graeme King. It is longer (= faster) and no lofting is needed. The skill level is 'intermediate' which is still way above my level but I wouldn't be quite so afraid of the challenge.