Swiss C-Class favourites

Photo: ADimages
Jeremie Lagarrigue talks us through the two VPLP-designed Decision-build foiling Hydros Lombard Odier beauties
While Canadian Fred Eaton has won the last two International C-Class Catamaran Championships, favourite going into next week’s event in Falmouth is the Hydros Lombard Odier team from Switzerland. Led by Jérémie Lagarrigue, this is the same group that created, the foil-assisted catamaran we sailed last year, that has since gone on to break several records on Lake Geneva. Ten people have been working full time for two years on the two-boat Hydros C-Class campaign, but over this period some 56 people have been involved in total. Among its sailors, the team features some of the world’s top dinghy catamaran specialists including Billy Besson - this year both the F18 and the Nacra 17 World Champion - who helms for Lagarrigue, while Dutch F18 gurus, Mischa Heemskerk (also the A-Class World Champion) and Bastiaan Tentij, sail the other Hydros Lombard Odier C-Class. The Swiss C-Class campaign has been underway for around two years now and whereas the other two boats teams here in Mylor comprise boats of different generations, the two Hydros Lombard Odier catamarans are near identical – the only difference is their rudders: on Besson/Lagarrigue’s boat they are transom hung, on the other boat they are spades. The Hydros platforms and wings have been designed by VPLP. However the foils were developed in house, starting with base data the team gained from Foiling was one of the key developments of the Swiss C-Cats and, like Groupama with their foiling F18, the team spent much time developing this on board their flying Nacra 20 – including working on optimum foil shapes and movement (cant and rake, etc) as well as how to use all these in different conditions and through manoeuvres. Developing the foils on the Nacra 20 was far easier, says Lagarrigue, because they could throw the boats around with relative impunity (something