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New Azzurra sets sail

Guillermo Parada and the crew begin their tests

Wednesday March 18th 2015, Author: James Boyd, Location: Spain

In preparation for this year's 52 Super Series, the new Azzurra TP52 has been launched and had her maiden voyage off Valencia.

Salt water first touched the hull of the Yacht Club Costa Smerelda's latest yacht after her launch on Saturday in the Port America’s Cup in Valencia.

On Monday the crew led by skipper Guillermo Parada and tactician Vasco Vascotto went sailing for the first time on their new TP52, designed by Botin Partners and constructed under the supervision of Project manager Miguel Costa.

“For an Italian sailor,” tactician Vasco Vascotto said, “having the privilege of sailing aboard a boat named Azzurra has a unique value. It gives us the chance to continue a tradition of success that began over thirty years ago. It’s a great honour and a huge responsibility that I share with a strong and unified team.”

Azzurra was built to the new class rules for the upcoming season. These allow for a larger sail plan and deeper draft on lighter boats turbo-charging their performance. The boat comes from careful study of fluid dynamics for top performance both up and down wind. Special attention was paid to structural engineering for maximum rigidity and resistance at the lowest possible weight. The deck is clean and unencumbered with no coachroof and the cockpit is free of lines as they run under the deck.

Azzurra will now begin a series of training sails against Phoenix, a boat with similar characteristics that was launched last year. These trials will be both a workout for the crew will be an excellent opportunity to optimise the new Azzurra.

In about eight knots of breeze the team has been running structural stress and systems tests.

Guillermo Parada commented: “The job list is still very long but we are happy so far. The feeling on the boat is good and the system seems to be very neat so once we have everything tweaked and working properly we are confident that it’ll be really, really nice. We are headed for a long week of work, but we’re very happy and I’m sure we’ll be in good shape by the end of the week.”

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