Camper VO70 - the nuts and bolts

Chris Cameron / Camper
Neil Cox gives us the guided tour
This article follows on from our interview with Marcelino Botin and Chris Nicholson published on Wednesday. Australian Neil Cox came on to the radar as boat captain of ABN AMRO Two during the 2005-6 Volvo Ocean Race, moving on to running shore operations for Puma during the last fully crewed round the world race, a job he has continued for Emirates Team New Zealand’s Camper campaign. With skipper Chris Nicholson, Cox from the outset was integral to some of the fundamental decision-making over the Kiwi team's new VO70. “We thought there were massive performance gains to be made by just basic yacht design that hadn’t been tapped into, so it was a case of ‘let’s re-evaluate the box’ - everything from VCG to why does the freeboard need to be this big, to why does the deck need to be so cambered - material, windage, VCG, etc," he says. "Some of them were gains of a small percentage, but if you take them together they add up. A lot of thought went into every detail. The biggest thing was just trying to make the boat clean.” As usual with Emirates Team New Zealand boats, Camper was built by Mick Cookson in Auckland but, interestingly, unlike the Juan K designs which are fully carbon-Nomex, Camper has a foam core in the slamming areas. Cox has fond memories of having to replace a large section of the bows areas on the ABN AMRO boats when they were in Cape Town back in 2005. There is some superb build detailing like the rule-compliant foredeck hatch, a flush-fitting circular carbon fibre affair built by Cookson (“one of New Zealand’s little treasures” as Cox describes him) and offset to port, but of a minimum size, so it doesn’t look like it will see too much action other than for