Route du Rhum Multi vs Class40 monos

Lykke

Member
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66
So Cal
As mentioned to me by another anarchist… the winning Rhum Multi boat would’ve been 10th in the Class40 on elapsed. And behind the winning Class40 by over 2 days.

And not like they haven’t really been pushing - two flipped I think (a 40’ foiling tri and a TS50 cat).

So what’s your explanation:

1) Class40 competition is so good that the evolutionary curve transcends the number of hulls.

2) Multihulls with their negative stability curves are not suitable for single handed operation, period. In, say, C600 multis have been beating Class40s

3) Conditions in this race weren’t right.

4) other?
 

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mpenman

Member
289
315
Pompano Beach
As mentioned to me by another anarchist… the winning Rhum Multi boat would’ve been 10th in the Class40 on elapsed. And behind the winning Class40 by over 2 days.
No one is having tea and biscuits on the Class40's or sleeping in a comfortable bed at the end of a race (on the boat that is). Those are serious racing machines, with accommodations not unlike the Volvo 70's of old.

Not a truly fair comparison.

And not like they haven’t really been pushing - two flipped I think (a 40’ foiling tri and a TS50 cat).
Unfortunate no doubt. The stability of the unimarans is definitely superior to the multi's.
So what’s your explanation:

1) Class40 competition is so good that the evolutionary curve transcends the number of hulls.
Great class IMHO.
2) Multihulls with their negative stability curves are not suitable for single handed operation, period. In, say, C600 multis have been beating Class40s
I think when you look at a cruising multi that loses the weight to go racing the stability curves do change. I multi you sail to the gusts, which limits canvas. Inevitably when trying to go faster you put up more canvas.
3) Conditions in this race weren’t right.

4) other?
For racing single handed, I'd take a Class40, for cruising/racing I'd take a performance multihull. Utility is far greater, but the cost will most probably be too.

Great question and discussion
 

munt

Super Anarchist
1,327
324
The belt
I got to look at a couple of the 40s up close on land. They are extremely serious racing machines. "Sailing to the gusts" as mentioned above is a big part of the answer. I sailed monos in a very gusty venue for about a year and I got to learn this for myself. It's pretty simple, really. In the mono, especially at night, you can push, knowing that a big gust is mostly only gonna lean you over or maybe spin you out or blow out a sail. The other big factor, also mentioned above is that the 40s are simply very, very fast sailboats. All the sailors are fantastic. I am surprised by the flipping, no fuses being used?
 
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bushsailor

Anarchist
725
226
QLD Australia
If you really want to compare a class 40 with other racing multis compare it with the ocean 50 trimarans, they are both out and out racing machines.
I have a fast catamaran but I would be going pretty slow across an ocean single handed with no insurance too!!! I would much rather do that race in a mono even if it is 20 times more uncomfortable.
 

boardhead

Anarchist
You don’t think it’s just racing monohulls vs cruising cats? An Outremer is hardly a race boat. Not terribly surprise personally.
Did you even look at the Rhum Multi entry list?
Plenty of high performance multis including ORMA 60's but more specific to the question - a state of the art, foil equipped, carbon, 40' tri that is currently out there upside down and was days behind the Class 40's before it flipped.
So why do you think that is?
 

boardhead

Anarchist
If you really want to compare a class 40 with other racing multis compare it with the ocean 50 trimarans, they are both out and out racing machines.
I have a fast catamaran but I would be going pretty slow across an ocean single handed with no insurance too!!! I would much rather do that race in a mono even if it is 20 times more uncomfortable.
No - let's compare it with current 40' Offshore Racing multihulls.
Back in the day, size for size, multihulls blew the doors off similar sized monohulls- What Happened?
 

mpenman

Member
289
315
Pompano Beach
No - let's compare it with current 40' Offshore Racing multihulls.
Back in the day, size for size, multihulls blew the doors off similar sized monohulls- What Happened?
I think foils changed much as did hull shape.

Now in the Route Du Rhum, the multi's were still almost half the time of other boats.......size aside :)
 

munt

Super Anarchist
1,327
324
The belt
I'll beat the dead horse a bit, if you ever get a chance to look at a newer 40, you'll see that it is a very big, very powerful, extremely serious racing machine. The guys in this class are hyper competitive. Another factor is that in a longer ocean race it's the ability to consistently maintain a high average speed. Seems obvious, right? But, in lighter air going to weather and in heavy air that 40 will keep marching forward at relatively high speed. Another thing to note is how close many of the 40s were to the Imocas. That shows you how nasty fast the 40s really are. They are really nothing like your local J40. I'm not sure exactly how far behind the lead 40s the tri was when it flipped? I'm a bit surprised too that it wasn't faster and moreso that it flipped but the mental strain of single handing a boat like that in "flipping" conditions must be pretty damn intense. I'm still wondering if there isn't some kind of anti flipping fuse on the multis?
 

r.finn

Super Anarchist
2,001
662
Did you even look at the Rhum Multi entry list?
Plenty of high performance multis including ORMA 60's but more specific to the question - a state of the art, foil equipped, carbon, 40' tri that is currently out there upside down and was days behind the Class 40's before it flipped.
So why do you think that is?
My guess is that were this race in flat water, Jessica Rabbit would be much much faster, but in waves, she has to be sailed below 100% or we have what ultimately happened to her happen. Meanwhile the Class 40 leaders were sailing at 100% of their polars. Usually in the rough conditions leaving Europe, the multihulls have to be sailed well below their polars to get out in one piece. Singlehanding multihulls is just much more dangerous. A Diam 24 is probably much quicker than a Mini 650, but I wouldn't bet against the mini in a Transatlantic race between the two. Waves.
 

boardhead

Anarchist
I think foils changed much as did hull shape.

Now in the Route Du Rhum, the multi's were still almost half the time of other boats.......size aside :)
Let's stay on point and see if we "Multihull Anarchists" can learn something here.
The question was boat for boat - 40' vs 40' on this particular race which is generally viewed as the Ultimate for the Class 40.

I agree that foils changed much - apparently beneficially for lead slingers, not so much for multihull - the sister ship of the 1978 winner killed the 2020 state of the arter!

Hull shapes - huge benefit for the mono's again but what of the Multi's?

The fact that gazillion dollar hundred feet plus foiling multihulls perform amazingly is wonderful but the triple down appears almost detrimental to multi's mere mortals can afford.
 

longy

Overlord of Anarchy
7,003
1,285
San Diego
I think you're still seeing the difference in the way the two types end up when over pressed. The mono's will have a topsy turvy bit, might lose a sail. Multi's go topsy upside down. So mono sailor's can push harder in the big breeze & get the big numbers, multi's have to reef way down to keep a safety margin.
In Stan Honey's discussion of weather routing in his 'round the world trek on a maxi multi he states they wanted light breezes & flat water as they're fastest conditions
 

Lykke

Member
122
66
So Cal
So the conclusion seems to be that for a self-financed single hander Class40 is more appropriate than a 40’ multihull. Which shows in the entry numbers, and explains the death of the class 40 multihull racing.
 

boardhead

Anarchist
Yeah - I think we all know about the merits of the pendulum but it was long since established that multihulls generate greater righting moments for a given weight and do so with the rig almost upright where it is more efficient so they go faster.

This is not about routing through the best conditions around the world - it's Brittany to Guadalupe in November so probably upwind in breeze for a thousand miles then down trades for three.

The upwind bit is more OSTAR where multihulls were totally dominant by the 80's - mostly trimarans - in 1988 an amateur designed 40 footer (MTC) beat all the monohulls including four sixty footers!

The monohull boys always acknowledged multis were faster downwind but crap upwind - this latest R-du-R saw the Imoca 60's with the 50' trimarans upwind but the tri's ran away in the Trades - the old story!

So if we say it's all about the ability of the boat to take care of itself hard pressed in short handed races OK - but isn't that what we want for owner operated offshore multis which, of course we also like to be fast - so not only are the latest design not winning races, they are not providing better options for fast, seaworthy, private ownership.
I think you're still seeing the difference in the way the two types end up when over pressed. The mono's will have a topsy turvy bit, might lose a sail. Multi's go topsy upside down. So mono sailor's can push harder in the big breeze & get the big numbers, multi's have to reef way down to keep a safety margin.
In Stan Honey's discussion of weather routing in his 'round the world trek on a maxi multi he states they wanted light breezes & flat water as they're fastest conditions
 

boardhead

Anarchist
So the conclusion seems to be that for a self-financed single hander Class40 is more appropriate than a 40’ multihull. Which shows in the entry numbers, and explains the death of the class 40 multihull racing.
Whilst remembering that, since 2006, there has been a 40' monohull class in the R-du-R but no 40' multihull class.
Also the Atlantic Cup is the biggest and richest shorthanded sailing event on the east coast - for Class 40
 

munt

Super Anarchist
1,327
324
The belt
Just my opinion, but the newish 40 monos in the RdR seem to have found a "sweet spot" wherin they have a very powerful boat that is relatively easier to push single handed than a multi. What would happen if you had 3 or 4 really excellent sailors on the tri with similar crew on the mono 40? I'm guessing the tri would be 10 (or more) percent faster than it was singlehanded but the mono might be the same or slower due to weight? On a powered-up multi at night the difference between having skilled hands on tiller and sheets and being able to reef and unreef quickly has to be worth at least 10-20 percent. Keeping in mind that those 40s were mixing close to the Imocas and the foiling Imocas are almost not even monos anymore, almost like airplanes. And the Ultims really are like 747s. And still nobody will answer my damn question about having some kind of fuse on the multihull sheets. I thought that would be a relatively simple safety contraption at this point. Anybody knows?
 

r.finn

Super Anarchist
2,001
662
Just my opinion, but the newish 40 monos in the RdR seem to have found a "sweet spot" wherin they have a very powerful boat that is relatively easier to push single handed than a multi. What would happen if you had 3 or 4 really excellent sailors on the tri with similar crew on the mono 40? I'm guessing the tri would be 10 (or more) percent faster than it was singlehanded but the mono might be the same or slower due to weight? On a powered-up multi at night the difference between having skilled hands on tiller and sheets and being able to reef and unreef quickly has to be worth at least 10-20 percent. Keeping in mind that those 40s were mixing close to the Imocas and the foiling Imocas are almost not even monos anymore, almost like airplanes. And the Ultims really are like 747s. And still nobody will answer my damn question about having some kind of fuse on the multihull sheets. I thought that would be a relatively simple safety contraption at this point. Anybody knows?
Yes, a lot of the top Multihull programs have an anti capsize system. It's called UpsideUp or something like that. It ain't cheap.
 


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