l’Hydroptère DCNS Sets Sailing Speed Record

Press Release
Tuesday, September 04, 2012


San Francisco Bay sailing speed record set by l’Hydroptère DCNS

World's fastest boat partners with local experts to certify historic 1-mile speed run and gives speed demo in Ronstan Bridge to Bridge Race

 

On Friday, l’Hydroptère DCNS, the fastest sailboat on the planet, set the first certifiable one-mile sailing speed record on San Francisco Bay. A race committee under the authority of the Yacht Racing Association of San Francisco Bay (YRA) and the San Francisco Bay Area Multihull Association (BAMA) declared a preliminary one-mile speed record of 37.5 knots (43.2 mph / 69.5 kph) based on visual timing that will be certified on analysis including precise Global Positioning System (GPS) plots.
 
The race authority set a one nautical mile course angled between the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island, in winds of 16 knots gusting to 20 knots. The beginnings of an ebb current kicked up tight, square waves. The boat made five passes at a record run between 2 p.m. and 3:45 p.m. The second run was fastest. The third run was threatened by a large excursion boat that did not yield way.
 
The all-French crew for skipper Alain Thébault consisted of two of the world's most celebrated ocean racers, Yves Parlier and Jean Le Cam, his long-time co-skipper and expert ocean racer Jacques Vincent, and boat captain Warren Fitzgerald. They were joined for the record run by the world's fastest sailor, kiteboarder Robert Douglas, who holds the outright sailing speed record of 55.35 knots (set on a special speed track in Namibia).
 
"When we learned there was no formal sailing speed record on this extraordinary bay, we knew we must see what we could do," said Thébault afterwards. "Our project has always been about showing how fast sails can fly, and we were so happy to work with the sailors of San Francisco to set this record."
 
The winds were lighter than usual for San Francisco Bay, but had winds been high enough to demonstrate the boat's full speed potential, safety considerations in the heavily trafficked bay suggested a limit of 45 knots. The boat has flown at 56 knots, and reached a top speed on the bay of 44.5 knots on Wednesday. Sustained speed, such as over a one-mile course or ocean passage, is a harder challenge than top speed.
 
The one-mile speed course was set up by experienced race committee representatives from a half-dozen local yacht clubs and associations. US Sailing Certified Race Officer Eric Arens (Richmond, Calif.) served as race officer, and Bob Naber (Alameda, Calif.), who is an officer of both YRA and BAMA, was official observer.
 
"It was hard for our two mark boats to perform the calculus, remain precisely stationary, and track times in the middle of the pitching bay. I was proud and pleased to partner with Eric and the committee to put together a process and protocol to do it in these tough conditions," said Naber, a multihull speed expert who recently helped BAMA create a virtual speed track. "When l'Hydroptére DCNS accelerated up onto its foils, it was like watching Star Wars, going to light speed."
 
The l'Hydroptére DCNS record sets a baseline for later speed testing of any boat that tries to break a sustained speed record. YRA and BAMA will apply the experience gained to future one-mile speed tests.
 
With the record in the bag, Thébault and his men then took part in the Ronstan Bridge to Bridge Race organized by the St Francis Yacht Club. For safety reasons, l’Hydroptère DCNS was not officially entered and set off a few minutes before the official start given the horde of windsurfers, kiteboarders and sports dinghies. Thébault and his crew remained at the head of the fleet from beginning to end and managed to thwart the numerous pitfalls dotted along the seven miles or so of the course between the Golden Gate Bri dge and San Francisco Bay Bridge. The crew teased out the potential of the flying trimaran despite the current, the big chop and the mostly downwind course. They successfully dodged the wind shadow of the island of Alcatraz and then flew along to the finish line.
 
This comes as the first reward for Thébault, and his crew in their preparation for the project's major offshore challenge: trying to break the Transpacific sailing speed record between Los Angeles and Honolulu. The ultimate aim is to demonstrate the offshore potential of 'flying' sailboats.

 

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter January 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Marine Power

Indian Navy Shows Off Strength

India’s naval might was on full display off the coast of Visakhapatnam today (Saturday) as President Pranab Mukherjee reviewed the naval fleet.   Mukherjee,

VPS Raises Concerns Over Revised Rules for Fuels

Veritas Petroleum Services (VPS) expressed reservations about some of the proposed revisions to the international ISO 8217 specifications of marine fuels. Areas

China to Enforce Low Sulphur ECA in Yangtze River Delta

Vessels calling ports in China’s Yangtze River Delta, including Shanghai, will be required to burn low sulphur fuel while at berth from April 1 this year.   China’s

News

MHI's Entity to Oversee Material Handling Equipment, Engine and Turbocharger Businesses

Today Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) decided in principle to launch a new wholly owned entity to integrally oversee its current businesses in material

Globus Maritime Reclassifies Board Member

Globus Maritime Limited, a dry bulk shipping company, announced today that when Georgios Karageorgiou, a Class I director of Globus Maritime Limited  resigned on December 28,

First Panama Canal Water-Saving Basin Filled

The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) announced that the first water-saving basin of the Agua Clara Locks’ upper chamber has been filled to the required level in order

Yachts

Honda Marine, BRIG USA Ink OEM Deal

Honda Marine, a division of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and marketer of a complete range of outboard marine 4-stroke engines, announced today a new OEM agreement with BRIG USA.

Peak Shipping Season Is Approaching For United Yacht Transport

Spring is the busiest season for United Yacht Transport, the North American leader in boat transport. The international boat transporters are set to complete various shipments in the upcoming months.

Italian Yacht Maker Ferretti Creates Defence and Security Unit

Italian luxury yacht builder Ferretti, owned by Chinese industrial conglomerate Weichai Group, has created a new unit to build boats for the patrol and defence of international waters,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0974 sec (10 req/sec)