A powerful new wave of design development is flowing through the Class40 fleet… with current world champion designer Marc Lombard joining in the fun with his latest creation for Akilaria. Lombard and his fluid mechanics engineer partner Lionel Huetz introduce the Akilaria RC3

After almost 10 years of constructive work with the MC Tec Yard, the time has arrived to draw together the high spots of our previous work together and update our Class40 offering.

Our first Class40 together, the RC1 was (and still is) an incredibly seaworthy, dry boat that delivers a strong performance across all points of sailing. However, the RC1 is a ‘big boat’, and due to the relatively large amount of hull surface it was always a challenge to hit class minimum weight using conventional, affordable construction methods (standard construction employs vinylester infusion).

The Akilaria RC2 demonstrated improved all-round performance, while changes to the deck layout and the generally lower freeboard enabled us to offer two different models, one aimed at regatta sailing and transatlantic races, the second for global ocean racing and shorthanded sailing.

At this point it is worth noting that Gonzalo Botín’s well-known Akilaria Tales was a combination design, with an RC1 hull under an RC2 deck. Tales won the Class40 Mondial title in 2010 and then again in 2012, proving that the Class40 rule delivers boats that remain competitive for a sensible period of time. However, nothing lasts for ever and in the last couple of years there have been growing numbers of more sophisticated production Class40s launched plus some interesting one-offs. It was time for us to do something new.

The Akilaria 40 RC3 is a completely new boat. The concept work was founded upon the experience of the RC1 and RC2 but without any constraint of having to reuse existing tooling. The hull, deck, appendages, mast and the internal layout of the RC3 are all completely new. The objective is a boat optimised as closely as possible to the current limits of the Class40 rule and taking careful account of the most popular races – including the next Global Ocean Race, for which ISAF Cat 0 is a requirement.

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