With the preliminary design study phase drawing to a close, the ground is now being prepared for the construction of the first Class 30, with the next phase of the project underway, which is the development of the detailed construction plans. These will be completed by the end of March 2022.
The new Class 30 design will offer two different specifications; a Club and One Design version, with the Club offering being seen as a tool for training, learning about and competing on the offshore racing circuit. This new boat is the fruits of an international architecture competition organised by France’s National Offshore Racing Union (UNCL) in partnership with the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC), in the UK and the Storm Trysail Club in America. With the constant involvement of the competition winners, the VPLP naval architecture firm and the Multiplast yard.
One of the objectives of the project is for the Class 30 Club boat, to have a competitive ready to sail price tag of under €100,000.
A promising start and the pre-booking process
At this early stage of the programme, the project has been very well received with over thirty reservations of production boat numbers recorded on the UNCL – Yacht Club de France stand at the Nautic boat show in Paris, where the launch process began in earnest together with the presentation of the model.
The registration protocol is both simple and safe. You need to send an email to [email protected] where all requests are received; in return a booking contract will be sent along with a short presentation on the boat. To secure the reservation a €2,500 deposit needs to be paid to a locked escrow account (all details in the information you receive), managed by a sworn lawyer. Once funds are received, the lawyer sends a booking number in chronological order to applicants. This booking number is non-transferable and you can cancel your reservation at any time and receive a full refund.
Production set to commence from January 2023
With regards to the build schedule, the study phase has been extended to finalise the tooling and moulds so that construction of the production boats can commence at the beginning of 2023, with the aim of having a few of the boats competing that Easter, either at the Spi Ouest France or the SNIM, or at RORC races in UK.
Depending how the order book evolves, promoters of the production boat will consider in due course whether or not to put in place an additional mould to increase production capacity in France, whilst evaluating the development of a licence programme overseas.
A boat designed to be container-shipped
In addition to the very contemporary lines and a series of simple and inexpensive solutions, what has come off the drawing board of competition winner VPLP-Multiplast is a truly stellar logistical feat. Indeed, through the possibility of fitting the whole boat and its rig into a 40-foot container was not a prerequisite of the initial specifications, it was quickly viewed as a major benefit in ensuring the best possible distribution of the one-design via both road and sea transport. The design of a transport cradle is also envisaged with this in mind. In line with the wishes of the project’s stakeholders, particular attention has gone into the pre-manufacture studies of the first prototype to ensure the best possible control of the budget for the production boats, which is a key aspect of the project.
A circuit for the Class 30 One Design™
The main aim of the class is to set up a sports programme enabling sailors – owners and clubs – to get out racing at the highest level as soon as possible on a variety of course types and stretches of water. To this end, the one-design is intended to provide an optimised response to the IRC measurement criteria. This option will pave the way for an extensive one-design race programme both in France, UK and overseas, around the cans and offshore. UNCL and RORC are also very keen to quickly schedule in a ‘Class 30 Tour’, an event which will serve as a reminder of the project’s suitability and ambition for training and replenishing a whole generation of offshore racing crew and skippers of renown. This Class 30 Tour could travel with crews going back and forth between the English and French coasts.
It is the intention to set-up class associations for both the Club and One Design to develop and manage the Class 30 (rules and racing programme), as well as being a forum for sharing ideas, training initiatives and managing and dealing with any issues that are relevant to the class.