Plans underway for 2016 GC32 Racing Tour

Published on October 30th, 2015

Following a successful conclusion to the Bullitt GC32 Racing Tour at Marseille One Design last month, the circuit’s organisers have been looking ahead to 2016. They can now confirm that a minimum of six teams will be participating, with more due to sign up to the foiling catamaran one design circuit over the winter months.

With a season running from May until mid-October, the 2016 GC32 Racing Tour will be held exclusively at southern Europe venues that offer optimum wind conditions in order for the ultra-high speed catamarans to spend as the maximum time foiling. ‘Sun, speed and spectacle’, will be the watch words of 2016 with teams able to offer a VIP experience to their guests in the most beautiful venues.

“You can’t predict this far out what the weather will do, but the aim is to increase the chances of the boats racing in 10+ knot conditions most of the time,” explains well known Swiss sailor and race organiser Christian Scherrer, the new Manager of the GC32 Racing Tour. “This is more than enough to get the GC32s not only foiling comfortably, but sailing at more than twice wind speed…Our goal is to provide the teams with the best possible sailing for these boats and with this format we maximise their time afloat and increase the enjoyment of the foiling-racing experience.”

Like previous GC32 seasons, the aim is to remain with four day long events, with modern America’s Cup-style courses with reaching starts and finishes and other race formats tailored to provide maximum enjoyment and thrill factor for crews. The larger race areas provided by the GC32 Racing Tour provide ample runway for the foiling catamaran to reach maximum speed, as well as increased safety while racing.

Optimum conditions and less sub-10 knot ‘marginal foiling’ conditions should also make it easier for newcomers to get to grips with the foiling GC32 catamaran.

The finalised dates and venues for the 2016 GC32 Racing Tour will be announced over the next few weeks. The Tour promises to be a hit with teams looking for a taste of modern day America’s Cup-style foiling catamaran racing on a now well-developed boat capable of speeds approaching 40 knots. Thanks to being a one design, it avoids escalating costs and is small enough so it can be towed between venues either on a trailer or in a container, minimising transportation expenditure.

The organisers can already confirm a minimum of six teams will be participating in 2016, with more due to sign up to the foiling catamaran one design circuit over the winter months.

In addition to the GC32 Racing Tour, the GC32 Class plans to hold special events at existing or new venues.

Details at http://www.gc32racing.com

About the GC32 Racing Tour
The GC32 is a 10m long (12m including bowsprit) by 6m wide foiling catamaran conceived by Laurent Lenne.

Her hulls and foils were designed by Dr Martin Fischer, previously a leading F18 catamaran designer with his Capricorn, Hobie Wildcat and Phantom F18 designs and who was part of the design teams behind the Groupama ORMA 60, maxi-trimaran, VO70s and Groupama C C-Class catamaran. Until recently he was a designer with the Italian Luna Rossa America’s Cup Challenge.

With structural engineering carried out by Brett Ellis (ex-Alinghi/Luna Rossa), the boat is built in carbon fibre throughout by Premier Composite Technology in Dubai, builder of the Carkeek 40HP, 47HP and 60 and the Farr 400.

The foils are manufactured by Heol Composites in France: The GC32 features T-foil rudders and J-shaped daggerboards/foils, similar in concept to those used on the AC72 America’s Cup catamarans. However relative to the size of the boat, the foils are substantially larger, allowing the GC32 to foil even in low wind speeds and with much great stability and ease. Despite having big foils, the GC32 has already recorded a top speed of 37.9 knots.

Unlike the AC catamarans the boat features a more manageable soft-sail rig with one design sails from North Sails France, carbon fibre spars from Southern Spars and composite standing rigging from Easyrigging.

The boat is demountable with a two piece mast for easy transportation.

Bullitt GC32 Racing Tour 2015
27-31 May: Austria Cup – Lake Traunsee, Austria
24-27 June: Cowes Cup – Cowes, UK
29 July-2 August: Kiel, Germany
27-30 August: Rome Cup – Civitavecchia, Rome, Italy
30 September-3 October: Marseille One Design – Marseille, France

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