Photos; Juerg Kaufmann/Mirabaud

Mirabaud LX gets a wing

The latest developments on Thomas Jundt's foiler

Thursday May 12th 2011, Author: Bernard Schopfer, Location: Switzerland

Thomas Jundt, the Geneva based sailor and engineer, has unveiled the 2011 version of his experimental foiler, Mirabaud LX.

The radical foiler, in addition to its foils and carbon fibre structure, now features an innovative new wing mast comparable – relatively speaking – to the one that recently won the America's Cup. It also features solid carbon rigging.

“I have been monitoring the evolution of wing masts for years,” said Thomas Jundt. “And now, thanks to significant advancement in know-how and materials, it has become feasible to mount one on this sort of platform. Early trials on Lake Geneva over the past few weeks have been conclusive and we are keen to start the new racing season and to attempt to set some records.”

Mirabaud LX is the second boat on Lake Geneva to feature a wing mast. Philippe Stern tried it 19 years ago on his Altair XII.

“Thomas Jundt and his team's ability to develop cutting edge new technologies never ceases to amaze us,” declared Antonio Palma, partner and CEO of Mirabaud. “I look forward to seeing Mirabaud LX sail with its wing mast. The 2011 season promises to be an exciting one.”

Since its launch in April 2008, Mirabaud LX has undergone constant improvements that include new floats, new sails, new foils and numerous refinements to the overall structure and fittings. To date, aside from the Moths (single-crewed), it is the only sailing foiler on Lake Geneva that has accomplished its goal of winning races and breaking records.

Most recently, Mirabaud LX won its category at the 2010 Weymouth Speed Week where it notched up an average of 23.24 knots, with a peak of 25.8, over 500 metres. The foiler also shattered the Geneva–Rolle–Geneva record in 2009 with a time of 3h43'47” in the monohull class.

This year, Thomas Jundt will sail with his usual crew made up of helmsman and coach Antoine Ravonel and bowman, Eric Gobet.

Wing masts are aerodynamically very efficient due to their rigidity and shape control, but while they allow for significant improvement in terms of performance, they are also a serious technological and logistical challenge and require time, patience and a lot of talent.

Mirabaud LX technical specifications:

Length overall: 10m
Hull length: 8.5m
Beam overall: 5.4m
Wing area: 17m2
Weight of the wing: 29kg
Upwind sail area: 26m2
Downwind sail area: 49m2
Displacement: 170kg (25kg of foils)

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