America’s Cup: NYYC team signs Botin Partners
Published on October 20th, 2017
Bella Mente Quantum Racing (BMQR) has announced it has signed an exclusive agreement with Botin Partners Naval Architecture to design the yacht it will sail in the 36th America’s Cup competition, which is scheduled to take place in Auckland, New Zealand, in early 2021.
The syndicate will represent the New York Yacht Club, which has returned to the America’s Cup arena after a 15-year absence.
Botin Partners is one of the world’s most reputable yacht design firms, with a unparalleled track record of success across many classes, particularly large monohulls. The Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron announced just over a month ago that the next America’s Cup will be sailed in the AC75 monohull.
“Botin Partners has been the premiere monohull designer for the last decade,” said BMQR CEO/Skipper Terry Hutchinson. “We have had a great relationship with the Botin design office through five TP52s, and it just feels like a natural fit.”
BMQR is the combination of two successful American keelboat programs, Hap Fauth’s Bella Mente Maxi72 program and Doug DeVos’ Quantum Racing team. Over the past decade, Quantum Racing has sailed Botin Partners’ designs to five world championships in the TP52 class. Locking in the design team early allows BMQR the opportunity to begin development of its AC75.
“Any good team needs to learn how to communicate and understand each other,” said Hutchinson. “This takes time. The ability to start assembling this team now is critical as we have ground to make up against the established teams.”
Marcelino Botin, the founder and president of Botin Partners, has extensive experience in the America’s Cup having been the principle designer for Emirates Team New Zealand from 2004 to 2011, including the 32nd America’s Cup when ETNZ won the Louis Vuitton Cup and narrowly missed defeating Alinghi in the America’s Cup match.
“Our ambition is to win the America’s Cup, and BMQR, with the New York Yacht Club as challenging club, has in our view the best chance to achieve this goal,” said Botin. “We have enjoyed a long relationship with many of the members of this team and feel very comfortable working with a group that has proven over the years to be extremely competitive.”
With just a rough outline of the rule currently available, Botin said his immediate focus is on finalizing his design team. The bulk of the design parameters for the AC75 monohull will be released at the end of November with the rule finalized by March 31, 2018. Botin is hopeful the defending Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, represented by Emirates Team New Zealand, creates an America’s Cup class that balances performance with maneuverability.
“One important factor is proximity,” said Botin. “The boats need to have similar speeds and be capable of engaging in typical match-race maneuvers. A fast boat is desirable, but it should also be reactive at lower speeds. We would like to see upwind starts with all the pre-start strategy that goes with it. A light displacement monohull would be the perfect platform for these situations.”