Big green giant


 
Editor James Boyd takes a sail on board Franck Cammas' incredible new Groupama III
Since the demise of Loick Peyron's Fujicolor campaign after the disastrous 2002 Route du Rhum in 2002 few have come close to matching Franck Cammas' Groupama trimarans on the ORMA/MultiCup circuit. Groupama 1 was hard to beat in the 2003 season and since the launch of the new Groupama 2, the only new 60ft tri to be built since 2002, Cammas has been all but invincible. Thus it was with high expectations that thedailysail pitched up at the team's base within the giant Nazi-built concrete submarine silos in Lorient, Brittany to touch, step on board, snoop around and ultimately sail on the latest offering from Cammas' team - a 105ft state of the art trimaran, unconfined by any rules and a vessel designed to take on the fastest offshore race boat in the world - Bruno Peyron's maxi-cat Orange II. Launched just six weeks ago Groupama III represents Cammas' first step into the world of G-class maxi-multihulls. It should be emphasised that despite the present decline of the 60ft trimaran circuit the launch of this boat does not mark the end of Groupama's participation in the MultiCup circuit. Indeed Cammas views it as filling a gap over the class' quiet winter months. The boat was designed by trimaran experts Marc van Peteghem and Vincent Lauriot Prevost who designed the previous Groupama trimarans, with additional input from Martin Fisher, Herve Devaux and Guillaume Verdier. Construction was carried out by Gilles Ollier's company Multiplast who have built nearly all these large multihulls. Compared to the 60ft long trimarans Cammas has sailed for almost a decade now, the new three-huller is obviously substantially longer, albeit small compared to the 120 footers Steve Fossett's PlayStation and Orange IIthe present holder of the 'big three': Jules Verne Trophy and the west to east Transatlantic and 24 hour

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