I don't have anything against Nacra Sailing but yes, they are not very knowledgeable about the early days of the company.On the original question; After some checking on the www, which has limited info on the subject, it looks like the 36 ended up as a marketing tool for the nacra class. Originally, if they were going to have a pro race series they dont say that on the nacra site. http://www.nacra-na.com/about-us.html
The 5.2 came out the same year as the 36. https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/nacra-52
https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/nacra-36 Note the co-designer
The Alpha cat was the first cat listed from Tom Roland and Glastron 1970 https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/alpha-cat-18
There is also a 15' singlehander Alpha cat according to the about-us article
The article by the current nacra company has the facts mixed up . Possibly because they had to write the original 5.2 out of the story because 5.2 is 17', the famous olympic Nacra 17 cant be mixed up with the old 5.2. Weird because the 5.2 was popular. Also they bought the company performance catamarans which was an amalgamation of prindle and nacra.
The 18 square nacra story is glazed over as well. There was an 18 square made with 5.2 hulls first, then the 5.5 hulls came out to be faster against the other 18 squares the way i remember it. Also the Prindles were still made by Sufrglass then, even though the about-us story kind mixes those 2 histories into one.
And yes, they jealously guard the brand at this point. Which, of course, is to be expected.
There is the small problem of Nacra Australasia though. Back in the Performance Catamaran era the Nacra brand and designed were licensed to a company in Australia. Who went on to build some of the famous classic Nacra's particularly the 5.8 which is still a huge class down under, and has been updated with square top main and a spin setup, and is still manufactured. They also built some of their own boats, and apparently they ended up with the original Nacra 36 molds, and are making those now too, again updated.
Full Disclosure: I wrote the original Wikipedia NACRA article, which was *not* "Nacra Sailing" but rather about the boats, including building the table. I modeled it after the Hobie Cat article. It was a labor of love, and I suffered through about 3 rounds of rejections of the article as not good enough. (Which is why it now has something like 25 citations, including several from the New York Times, which is the gold standard of "reliable sources" and helped me get over the final hump of having it accepted for publication.)
Since then the company has clearly taken over, and somehow managed to morph the article from "Nacra" to "Nacra Sailing" and put in a nice little info box about their company in the Netherlands.
(I'm not sure how Nacra Australasia feels about that, they were sort of edited out of the article a bit in the transition, but as I understand it: they do have an independent claim to the name, and while they resell some of the Netherlands boats they do still have their own branch of the brand going on.
I added a bunch of links at the bottom, it will be interesting to see if they remain, or are edited out. While it might seem a bit counter-intuitive, companies are not supposed to edit their own web pages, it's considered bad form, against Wikipedia rules, and a conflict of interest. Because the encyclopedia (which falls short of it's own ideals too often) isn't supposed to be a PR machine.
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