New boat for the Volvo pt3


Today yacht designers Mani Frers Jim Pugh Marc Lombard and Merfyn Owen give their views
Following on from madfor sailing's interview with Bruce Farr, we asked other yacht designers for their views on what Volvo should be considering for the new boat for the 2005/6 race. Over the following pages we get the opinions of Mani Frers, Merfyn Owen and Jim Pugh of Riechel/Pugh and Marc Lombard. Marc Lombard Leading French designer Marc Lombard, who has been responsible for the Open 60 Sill Plein Fruit and the 60ft trimarans Banque Populaire and Sopra Group, feels that the Volvo Ocean Race is too expensive because the boats have too many crew members and too many sails to handle and the race itself has too many legs. Compared to Open 60s he says the Volvo Ocean 60s are relatively slow downwind and reaching, due to their relatively large displacement and poor directional stability (a VO60 weighs in at around 13.5 tonnes compared to 7-9 tonnes for a marginally smaller Open 60). Lombard also feels strongly that having the sails stacked up to weather along the toerail and having to move it around while sailing in the Southern Ocean is "stupid and dangerous". The stability of the new Volvo boat should not rely on the positioning of crew weight or 'the stack', Lombard continues. "I think we should limit the number of crew to seven people, the number of sails on board should also be limited to a maximum of 5/6 upwind sails, and 3/4 spinnakers/gennakers. The total number of sails used during the Volvo should also be limited to a reasonable maximum." Lombard would also like to see the new boat fitted with a swing keel rather than movable water ballast. He says this would allow more tactical options on reaching legs and would be safer. In conclusion he thinks that the boats should be around 70ft long

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