The USS Drake was a 24th century Federation starship operated by Starfleet. It was classified as a light cruiser.

In 2364, Commander William T. Riker, then-XO of the USS Hood, had been offered command of the Drake, but declined in favor of the USS Enterprise-D. Instead, Paul Rice was given command.

Later in 2364, the Drake was sent to Minos on a mission to investigate the disappearance of the Minosians. After the ship reported arriving at the planet, there was no further contact with the Drake. The USS Enterprise-D would investigate the disappearance of the Drake and the Minosians.

The fate of the Drake was still unknown; however, in a conversation between a holographic image of Rice and Riker, the former, when stating the top speed of the "Drake" at warp 3, used the present verb tense of "is". This indicated to Riker that, while the crew might probably have been killed, the ship itself was not destroyed. When he asked for its location from Rice, he responded that the ship's location was "classified". (TNG: "The Arsenal of Freedom")


Background information

This starship was only mentioned in dialogue.

In an internal list of starships, from 26 September 1990, the Drake was identified as a freighter which was presumably destroyed at Minos. [1]

In the main entry for this ship in the Star Trek Encyclopedia (1st ed., p. 80), it was stated that the ship had been destroyed. However, in the second and third editions (3rd ed., p. 122), the Drake from "The Arsenal of Freedom" and the USS Drake from the DS9: "Apocalypse Rising" were treated as the same ship. Then, in the Star Trek Encyclopedia (4th ed., vol. 1, p. 218), they were treated as two separate ships, with the first ship being reported as destroyed. In the Starship Chart, for the Star Trek Encyclopedia (3rd ed., p. 471), there were two Drake's listed. This list in Star Trek Encyclopedia (4th ed., vol. 2, p. 328), with a major change being that the first Drake was identified as a freighter.

According to the Star Trek Encyclopedia (3rd ed., p. 122), this vessel was a Wambundu-class starship, with the registry NCC-20381. The Encyclopedia further noted that "the ship was named after the English admiral Sir Francis Drake, who commanded the first British ship to circumnavigate planet Earth."

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