Artemis test boat shows promise

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Artemis Racing ticked another box after the Swedish challenger launched their second AC45S test boat in California last month.

The wing-sail foiling catamaran, nicknamed “T2”, passed its first test on the waters of San Francisco Bay with flying colours and is expected to be in Bermuda soon.

The boat was launched on the eve of Artemis Racing’s relocation into their sailing operations at Morgan’s Point for next year’s 35th America’s Cup.

“It was very satisfying to launch T2 before we left for Bermuda,” Iain Percy, the team manager, said.

“The design and build of this boat was our key focus for 2015, and I’m very proud of the result of the team’s ingenuity and endeavour.

“It was particularly pleasing to be foiling around the bay on day one without any significant teething problems, giving us the chance to maximise the precious time on the water.

“We took away a number of key leanings and directions for our future America’s Cup Class development programme.”

Percy, who also serves as tactician on board Artemis’s fleet of foilers, is champing at the bit to start the team’s two-boat testing, which has been a mainstay of America’s Cup programmes since the 1980s when the 12-metres class was the racing yacht of choice.

“Two-boat testing is an important component of our campaign strategy,” said Percy, who won gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

“It’s going to be quite a sight seeing two Artemis Racing boats flying over the America’s Cup racecourse.”

Providing an insight into the team’s development pathway for the America’s Cup, Adam May, the Artemis design coordinator, said: “Very early in this America’s Cup’s cycle we upgraded our existing foiling AC45, a boat similar to those used in the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series, to boost its performance and provide a platform to test appendages.

“However, our development path truly began with our sister ship turbo programme. “T1” was launched in February 2015 as a test platform scaled to be similar to the AC62 class.

“The original AC45 foiler was then retired and converted into T2. There was a pause during its build while the AC class changed, and many features such as a similar deck layout to that of the new AC Class were incorporated into T2.

“T2 is our second fully loaded turbo charged AC45.

“The extra beam, larger wing, cockpits, and full fairing package make it a very different beast to the narrow traditional AC45s with foils.”

This story appeared in The Royal Gazette on February 4th, 2016.

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Artemis test boat shows promise