France. Brand new Ocean50 class sets up headquarters in Port La Foret
Tuesday, 21 August 2012
Even if the roads of Brittany are used to seeing a few yacht hulls on their concrete, it is an exceptional convoy that travelled from Bénodet to Port-la-Forêt yesterday.
The Ocean50 class, taken over by Mer Agitée, Michel Desjoyeaux’s offshore racing team and Mer Forte, his design office, launched its campaign yesterday and is gearing up to be able to produce the Ocean50s as soon as a minimum of 5 boats are ordered. The adventure starts now with the transfer of the moulds to the CDK boatyard where the boats will be built.
Present for the big move and being heavily involved in the campaign, the two time winner of the Vendée Globe is full of enthusiasm when he speaks about the new campaign: “It’s an important symbol for us to see the moulds arrive at CDK boatyard where the boats will be built. The Ocean50 class campaign is moving forward nicely and now that the hull moulds are here, we are getting in the thick of it!
“The moulds will remain unchanged as the hull is strong and fast. We will adapt the deck layout to make it more ergonomic and to improve safety and the sailor’s protection. It’s also an ideal platform for hospitality and hosting guests on board. It is a very important day for us all that marks the beginning of an adventure we hope will be long and successful.” concluded Michel before supervising the manoeuvre to get the moulds into the building.
Having worked on the project for several months, the Mer Agitée team have been reassured in its approach by the excellent feedback from institutions and skippers interested in this intermediary class which sits between the Figaros and Class40s and the IMOCA 60. Moving up to the IMOCA 60s can be a daunting step both from a sporting and technical viewpoint as well as a financial one. The Ocean50 class fills that gap by creating a bridge linking both worlds. The price of the boat “ready to race” is €1.767 million, exclusive of tax and that level of investment further supports the positioning of this new class as a ‘middle ground’.
The aim of the Ocean50 class is to participate in the main offshore races such as the Transat Jacques Vabre and the Route du Rhum. Talks are ongoing with Clipper Ventures, the organisers of the Velux 5 Oceans.
Editors note :
From as early as 2005, Michel Desjoyeaux was involved in the creation and development of the first one-design 50-footer (16m) monohull alongside Loïck Peyron. The initiative is supported by the French Federation of Sailing and is a collaboration with the design office of Jean-Marie Finot - Pascal Conq and Associates. The Finot-Conq design office has four Vendée Globe wins to its name and is the official designer of the boat. This combination of skills and talent, combined with Yvan Griboval’s original concept, has given birth to the one design 50-footer.
Having been convinced of the suitability of this intermediary class since its inception, Michel Desjoyeaux agreed to take on the project in its entirety in November 2011. It is therefore a natural progression that his two companies Mer Agitée and Mer Forte are now developing the concept. The Finot-Conq design office is the designer of the one-design monohull. The first Mer Agitée Ocean50 will be launched in 2013.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 21 August 2012 )