The AC75 expected in May 2024In addition to recruitment, the other major priority for Orient Express Racing Team in recent weeks has been to launch the build of the French AC75 which has just started from the design package purchased from Emirates Team New Zealand, which is surrounded by considerable discretion on the part of those we spoke to, the subject remaining very sensitive and obviously scrutinized by the other challengers. “The manufacturing of the tools has begun,” explains Antoine Caraz, “Building the hull, the deck and the structures should take from the end of June until October at Multiplast, before the start of assembly from the beginning of November, then the boat equipment with hydraulic and electronic systems, fittings.”
The mast will finally be made at Southern Spars, New Zealand, and not by CDK Technologies, as initially announced – “for planning reasons and because they had another customer in the America’s Cup“, specifies the technical director. The appendages will be from “a local supplier, but it is not yet signed”, he adds, while North Sails France has been entrusted with the design of the sails of a boat which should be finished in May 2024.
As for the “chase-boat“ with foils and hydrogen, imposed by the Protocol, “we will communicate on it soon, there will be a great project of French hydrogen nautical sector, with this chase-boat at the base”, comments Stéphane Kandler. In the coming weeks the team will move from Lorient to Vannes, to the heart of the Multiplast yard, while the shore team and the sailors will settle in Barcelona in early July on a temporary base made up of 25 containers and a tent capable of accommodating the AC40, at the bottom of the Porta d’Europa bridge, in the commercial port. The final base, with a total area of 6,000 m2, will be operational “at the end of winter 2023-2024 and will come into operation when the AC75 arrives”, adds Louis Viat.