Swiss C-Class catamarans prepare for Little America's Cup

Billy Besson and Jeremie Lagarrigue, who will lead the Swiss Hydros challenge at next year's Little America's Cup, recently finished third in the Formula 18 Catamaran World Championships at Long Beach, USA. Two catamarans bearing the Hydros colors will represent Switzerland at the next Little America's Cup, which will take place at Falmouth next year. Besson and Lagarrigue will sail the first catamaran, and a team selected by Daniel Schmaeh, the helmsman and skipper of record breaking l’, will sail the second one.Click image for larger image

Hydros intend to design two boats to study different types of appendages and hulls, capitalizing on the know-how garnered from l’Hydroptè and the latest Swiss technology. They will then optimize the best of these to suit the race in question and – last but not least – we will do their utmost to bring home the cup.

The two catamarans are currently undergoing construction at the Décision SA shipyard near Lausanne and will be the first ever boats built in TPT – Thin Ply Technology - famous as the "black sails" that Alinghi trialled prior to the 2007 America’s Cup. The rigid wing that will replace the sails is also under construction at Decision. Built with great attention to detail, it will be a model of precision and probably one of the most sophisticated wings ever made.

The first Hydros catamaran will be launched on 30 Novembre 2012 and the second in January 2013, with an intensive training schedule this winter in Switzerland before the teams move to milder waters.

The International C-Class Catamaran Championship, nicknamed the Little America’s Cup, has been held since 1961. Since the beginning it has symbolized fundamental research and technological development with no restrictions imposed, but conducted on a human scale.

The rules are very simple: the yachts must be catamarans measuring a maximum of 7.62 x 4.20 meters, with a total sail area of no more than 27.8 m2 and a crew of two, who are both allowed to trapeze and... The last International C-Class Catamaran Championship was held in Newport in summer 2010 the next will be held in September 2013 in Weymouth (UK).

l’ - image D Schmah/A TinturierClick image for larger image

The Hydros catamaran l’, recently broke the one-hour record on Lake Geneva and achieved the best time since 2007 on the Blue Ribbon course, smashing the record by covering the stretch from Geneva to Le Bouveret in 1 hour 44 minutes.

The l'Hydroptere adventure has been made possible by the unconditional support pledged since 2005 by Thierry Lombard, Managing Partner of the firm of private bankers Lombard Odier, whose year of foundation – 1796 – is printed on l''s mainsail.