And an interesting thought from Matt on going to windward after his day off Lanzarote on the SCA Farr one-design in the autumn: ‘All the crew knew at that time was that the boat was very tricky in a sea on the wind. It doesn’t dig in. It tended to go up over a wave and then the bow would get blown off – this made it a challenge to keep the boat pointing properly and the speed up. It was harder to keep on the boil than the Volvo 70s on that point of sail.’
So perhaps windward performance can be added to all the other variables that will determine the outcome of this even contest. Oh, and I forgot one more: luck. Every winning crew needs its share of luck and this race will be no different…
Here's a short piece from the VOR website on Brunels' 540 miles in 24hr run to Lanzarote from NL:
One of the new boat’s main performance factors appears to be the six degrees of incline axis of the keel. The vertically inclined keel lifts the bow out of the water to avoid nose-diving – a major issue in the past editions of the race. This means that the boat is faster and safer in running conditions with the wind behind it.
Matter of fine tuning to see what works best under what conditions?