Please select your home edition
Edition
Predictwind - Iridium

Hydroptere team takes advantage of winter season

by Thomas Lesage on 19 Jan 2013
Aerial photo shoot of l’Hydroptère DCNS, Alain Thébault and his crew (Yves Parlier, Jean le Cam, Jacques Vincent, Luc Alphand) during the first series of trials on the Med before trying to beat the Pacific crossing record between Los Angeles and Honolulu next summer. La Ciotat in the Bouches-du-Rhône, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, France. Christophe Launay
Following an eventful year and a first summer spent in the USA, the Hydroptere team of Alain Thébault is taking advantage of the winter season to fine-tune their technological and sports program. The partner search continues.

In 2012, the winter was quickly over. Just sponsored by a French group, Hydroptere aimed to break the Transpacific Record between Los Angeles and Hawaii. The new geographical parameters required an upgrade of the 'F1 of the seas' to a '4x4 of the oceans.'

At La Ciotat, in the south of France, the technical team worked seven days a week at the metamorphosis of the boat. The carbon bird left France in late May. 'These were some of the most intense and rewarding winter works that I knew,' said Warren Fitzgerald, the Boat Captain.

Hydroptere started sailing in Los Angeles in mid-July. Unfortunately the weather was not appropriate; the only favorable weather windows were already finished. The team trained for a month in southern California and then went to San Francisco to greet the America's Cup World Series sailboats.


Hydroptere encountered up to three meter high waves and thirty knots of wind at 'Point Conception', the difficult part of the California coast. In the cold and the tumult of the Pacific Ocean, the flying trimaran went from the desert climate of Los Angeles to San Francisco fog. Apart from the wind angles, it gave the sailors a good foretaste of what they could expect on their way to Hawaii. The Golden Gate Bridge was passed at night, under the sound of foghorns. 'Wonderful memories. We were really exhausted, and despite the cold, we were all on the deck to contemplate the pillars of this red metal giant' recalls Jacques Vincent, co-skipper.

In San Francisco, the autumn was there but still no appropriate weather window to Hawaii appeared. The hope for a record attempt this season disappeared. Never mind, Hydroptere sailed in the bay and shared its technology with the American public. Some stars of the Silicon Valley and of the America's Cup went on board and the team of Alain Thébault took the opportunity to establish a small local record of 37.5 knots of average speed over one nautical mile. 'Just a wink to the competitors; we hope that this record will be broken and that we will be able to come back and defend it next autumn,' jokes Alain Thébault, skipper and designer of Hydroptere.

In early November, the title partner of the team for three years announced his early withdrawal. The postponement of the record attempt disrupted the schedule and no longer corresponded to its objectives. Before Christmas holidays, Hydroptere was sheltered in the bay of San Francisco and the search for new partners began.

The team of Hydroptere is currently working on a development program over five years with a double clear objective: offshore racing and pure speed.


In the short term, Hydroptere has to gather as much experience as possible in the Pacific and aims to demonstrate that sailboats can fly offshore. The Transpacific record attempt is still scheduled for the coming summer and this will be followed by a public relations campaign to introduce the trimaran to the public. 'It's amazing how this boat continues to make people dream; this technology still fascinates a lot. Hydroptere is the only boat able to sail offshore and to take guests to nearly 50 knot' says Yves Parlier.

In the medium term, the team wants to start building a prototype of pure speed, inspired by the recent works of Vestas Sailrocket. 'The supersonic sailing barrier was crossed thanks to Paul Larsen. Now the target has to be an average of 80 knots' explains Alain Thébault.

In the longer term, finally, Hydroptere 2, a trimaran that will be a synthesis of Hydroptere performance and of those of the best conventional maxi-multihulls, will aim to cross the Atlantic in three days and to exceed the legendary barrier of the thousand nautical miles in 24 hours.


'We have considerable experience in the field of foils and high speed. With these three challenges, we have enough to fill an ambitious program over five years. Technology and pioneer spirit will always be the core of the project. We take advantage of the winter to gather skills, to get various sources of advice and we are working diligently to develop a global roadmap. The objective is to get a first series of support before spring to consolidate the process,' says Alain Thébault.

Alain Thébault will be present at the Düsseldorf boat show (BOOT) on Sunday 20th and Monday 21st January, and he will talk during two conferences about the future of multihulls and the new challenges of high-speed sailing.

http://hydroptere.com

Naiad/Oracle SupplierSouthern Spars - 100Barz Optics - Melanin Lenses

Related Articles

Volvo Ocean Race unveils combined Monohull-Multihull future
The Volvo Ocean Race has solved the question of whether its future should be monohull or multihull – by opting for both The race announced the next generation of One Design boats – to be introduced in 2019 and designed for use over at least six years ­– as the centrepiece of its vision for the next decade which significantly raises the game in both sporting terms and commercial value.
Posted on 18 May
Kids would rather go fast!
What do you do with 29 kids who want to sail faster? Why not put them in Nacra 15s? What do you do with 29 kids who want to sail faster? Why not put them in Nacra 15s? Which is how 29 moms missed having Mothers' Day brunch 2017 with their kids, but the chief culprit in the scheduling was bronze medalist Pamela Healy, a mom herself, so maybe it's okay.
Posted on 17 May
Lloyd Thornburg and his crew break Transpacific record aboard Phaedo^3
Lloyd Thornburg and his crew aboard Phaedo^3 swopped past Diamond Head Lighthouse buoy at 4:32:18am local time. In the darkest hour of Tuesday morning, Lloyd Thornburg and his crew aboard Phaedo^3 swopped past Diamond Head Lighthouse buoy at 4:32:18am local time. Looking like they shaved just on hour off the previous record. The total elapsed time was three days 16 hours 52 minutes and 03 seconds (all times still to be ratified by the WSSRC)
Posted on 17 May
Kiwi offshore star 'Trae' joins NZ Extreme Sailing Team
Extreme Sailing Series young guns NZ Extreme Sailing Team have further bolstered their squad with addition of Tony Rae. Extreme Sailing Series™ young guns NZ Extreme Sailing Team have further bolstered their squad with the addition of round the world sailor Tony Rae.
Posted on 16 May
Team Tilt takes second place at GC32 Riva Cup
Team Tilt gave a glimpse of their form at GC32 Riva Cup over the weekend, finishing second overall at their final event Team Tilt gave a glimpse of their form at the GC32 Riva Cup over the weekend, finishing second overall at their final event before representing Switzerland at the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup in June in Bermuda.
Posted on 15 May
Switzerland owns the podium at GC32 Riva Cup conclusion
Despite an impressive late charge from their compatriots on Team Tilt Jérôme Clerc-steered Realteam hung on to its lead Despite an impressive late charge from their compatriots on Team Tilt, the Jérôme Clerc-steered Realteam hung on to its lead to win the GC32 Riva Cup by four points after another three race day held in perfect 10-16 knot conditions on Italy’s Lake Garda. Flavio Marazzi’s ARMIN STROM Sailing Team managed third place, making podium of this first event of the 2017 GC32 Racing Tour a 100% Swiss affair
Posted on 15 May
A few rays – no water, no way?
Sunscreen that won’t wash off with spray or capsize … if only! Sunscreen that won’t wash off with spray or capsize … if only! Let’s go back a bit. Water is repelled by the skin. Thankfully so, or we would be in trouble when it rains, or when we swim or take a bath.
Posted on 15 May
2017 Wildwind season update - new boats and new accommodation
Our season opened last Saturday sixth. It was a perfect Vassiliki day with the cross-shore wind filling in at about 2pm. Our 2017 season opened last Saturday 6th May. It was a perfect Vassiliki day with the cross-shore wind filling in at about 2pm and giving our first clients of the season perfect conditions to launch our brand new ice-blue Lasers and our refurbished fleet of cats and dinghies of all shapes and sizes.
Posted on 14 May
Phaedo^3 attempting to break Transpacific World Speed Sailing Record
Pulling out in the fog from Long Beach dock in California this morning was Lloyd Thornburg and his crew aboard Phaedo^3 Pulling out in the fog from the Long Beach dock in California this morning was Lloyd Thornburg and his crew aboard Phaedo^3 headed towards the official start point of the WSSRC Transpacific Record.
Posted on 13 May
New multihull sportboat class for RORC Vice Admiral's Cup
The 7.25m by 5.62m one design is from the drawing board of VPLP, who has penned many top offshore multihulls The 7.25m by 5.62m one design is from the drawing board of VPLP, who has penned many top offshore multihulls such as the MOD70 and all recent Jules Verne Trophy record holders. Significantly the Diam24od is the first multihull class to be invited to compete in the Vice Admiral's Cup, the annual one design/level rating regatta, celebrating its 12th birthday this year
Posted on 12 May