01 Nov ClubSwan 36 heading North after The Nations Trophy
Philippe Oulhen, ClubSwan Product Line Leader, shares these words with us: The Nations Trophy was an event full of emotions. The overall picture was incredible, especially with the ClubSwan50 becoming the biggest One-Design fleet of this size boat, but for me the first racing for the ClubSwan 36 was quite special, after almost a year and half of work to develop, design and launch the production and bring the first four boats to the starting line. But to be more specific, I appreciated the end of the event very much, for two very good reasons:
1. The four ClubSwan 36 teams enjoyed the boat and racing without issues.
2. It was time to head north for an offshore delivery to Barcelona!
I always like offshore sailing and even if a sport boat can be challenging on open sea, it is a moment to extract oneself from shore-based concerns and focus on the tasks at sea. This was a great opportunity to test different ways to sail this boat with its foil and its rig, and also sharing a privileged moment with two people after this first season of tasting. Our prototype boat captain, Bernardo Zin, for sure the one with the most miles onboard a 36 today, even involved in finishing the boat before its launch in spring, and Ivan Kljakovicgaspic, manager of a new fleet of six ClubSwan 36’s for ACI Marina in Croatia. Bernardo is an accomplish offshore sailor as is Ivan who also adds three Olympic campaigns in Finn class.
Just the day after the TNT closed, we had no time to spare, after a weighting session for the four boats, we had to sail right away to Barcelona where most of the sailing magazines had gathered to start their sea trials to elect the European Boat of The Year. Safety equipment, some food, a sleeping bag and the latest chart to set our course, and we were ready to go under the full moon. Even in light airs, in the lee of the island, the 36 sailed faster than our 6 knots motoring, a great feeling and a quiet moment for the ones looking to catch up on some sleep.
This boat was boat number 2, or the first production boat, spec’d with the « Offshore kit », including two bunks, which were dry and comfortable according to Bernardo.
During the night, the wind increased and shifted to the right, giving us the opportunity to deploy completely the foil on port, trim the jib on the outboard lead and twist the mainsail and off we go. The lesson is simple, build some speed and let the boat heel, as soon as you feel the bow going up a little, record the heel angle (just the visual between the headstay and the horizon is enough), and steer fast with a constant heel angle. In our conditions of 12 to 15 kts True Wind Speed, we were fast and steady with a heeling angle close to 18 degrees. No need to record this, the feeling is clear and the control easy with the balanced rudder.
That was a great test before presenting the boat to the press and giving them some tricks to enjoy the ride. I think they did exactly that during the following days. For sure Bernardo, Ivan and myself we enjoyed it, very much!
Bernardo and Ivan, smiling after one night reaching on starboard full foil out – Full main + medium jib (no need for a kite!) => 11 to 12 knots of boat speed with 12 to 15 knots of True Wind speed (look at the bow up on this picture).