The yacht designer died of cancer at the age of 71. "I wanted to design boats when I was ten," Peterson once said and consequently implemented his early career aspiration. He made his breakthrough in 1973 with the one-ton truck "Ganbare". The project was underfunded and partially chaotic; The only reason the boat did not win the trophy, which was highly competitive at the time, was because the crew rounded a ton incorrectly. But from now on things got better: "Gumboots" got the bowl in 1974, and "Pied Piper" followed suit.
Breakthrough in the one-ton class: "Ganbare" 1973
This was followed by victories in almost all tonnage classes, in the most important international series such as SORC, Admiral's Cup and SardiniCup. The clients also included German ocean sailors such as Hans-Otto Schümann ("Rubin"), Udo Schütz ("Container") and Willi Illbruck ("Pinta"). Doug Peterson shaped the heyday of the International Offshore Rule in the seventies and early eighties like no other. But his love was also for the meter classes. Peterson owned a few copies himself and restored them.
German customers: "Pinta" by Willi Illbruck
He never drew just a twelve for the America's Cup. For this he was the designer of the victorious America's Cup Class "Americ3", which won the Cup in 1992 in his hometown of San Diego. In the following cup cycle, Peterson moved to New Zealand without an order from the USA and again designed the victorious boat. It was the Kiwi's first success in 1995. Peterson passed away on the day the New Zealanders won the Cup for the third time off Bermuda.
The Californian was also successful in series production. He drew for Jongert, Baltic Yachts, Grand Soleil, Solaris and, together with J&J, for Bavari (Match series).