The maxZ86 phenomenon


 
We talk to the various parties involved with the new CBTF maxi box rule class
Next week making their competition debut at the St Maarten Heineken Regatta, will be the two brand new maxZ86 turbo sleds, Morning Glory of Dr Hasso Plattner and Roy Disney's latest Pyewacket. Created in 2001 by Californian sled guru designer Bill Lee, now class Technical Director, the maxZ86 class was designed to succeed the previous generaton of TransPac turbo sleds. The maxZ86 is a box rule that typeforms to create 86(ish)ft long maxis (obviously) that are state of the art in terms of their design and speed potential, can race both inshore and offshore and provide close, tactical time allowance-free competition. To date three maxZ86s have been built, all of them from the most prolific design house when it is comes to monohulls of this size - San Diego-based Reichel Pugh. The first maxZ86 to be launched was Bob McNeal's Zephyrus V, in March 2002. That summer she won the West Marine Pacific Cup to Hawaii (see Gordon Maguire's account here). In Europe last summer she came second over the line in the Rolex Fastnet Race behind Neville Crichton's larger newer Alfa Romeo. Autumn of 2002 saw the class take a significant step forward when it voted to allow canting keels and specifically CBTF (canting ballast, twin foil) technology as advocated by Reichel Pugh. The decision was based on the success of Bob Oatley's subsequent Admiral's Cup winner Wild Oats at Hamilton Island Race Week. Both of the two new maxZ86s are CBTF boats but this change over has outdated the water ballasted Zephyrus V and Bob McNeal has since sold her to the deVos brothers. She has now been rechristened Windquest, the latest in a succession of boats of this name the family who founded the direct selling group Amway have owned. The new maxZ86s boats are almost identical. Both launched in

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