24th of April, 2015

Elusive Line Ups

It looks like it will be bext week, pre Gaastra Palma Vela, before the latest of the newly launched, latest generation TP52s take the chance to line up against each other. Though it is widely acknowledged that being up to optimum speed as early as possible before the 52 SUPER SERIES season starts in Valencia on May 19th is essential, so far the expected plans and opportunities for new boats to line up have just not materialised.

Last weekend saw three new boats sailing off Valencia at different times, Harm Muller Spreer’s Vrolijk designed Platoon, Andres Soriano’s Botin designed Alegre – sistership to Quantum Racing and Tony Langley’s new Gladiator.

Alegre, which will compete at Gaastra Palma Vela, was delivered to Palma after initial sail and boat testing and has had some more intenstive training and tuning with the crew on board out from Palma. 
Olly Cameron, Alegre’s Boat Captain/Project Manager, reports from Palma:

We have had a week which was really devoted just to testing the rig and systems and now after having delivered the boat to Palma we have been sailing since Tuesday with the race crew on board and today were out doing laps in the bay with some buoys down.

We should have a good nine days on the water training before Palma Vela and we are really pretty happy with where we are. I think we are pretty much absolutely where we wanted to be at this time, everything has worked out well.

Disappointingly no one has really lined up so far. We, and I am sure everyone else, is very keen to line up with other new boats because everyone wants to check in and see their speeds. But so far it has just not happened. Now it seems like the Botin boats will be in Palma for Palma Vela and the Vrolijks in Valencia.

I think really it will then be something like the 12th or 13th May before everyone is out there lining up just before Valencia. We all want to know how we shape out.
Olly Cameron, Captain/Project Manager Alegre

Cameron continues:

I think that all of the boats are going to be so very close in speeds this year, the hull shapes are very similar that a lot will depend on the aero package, rigs and sail set up, and so it will be in everyone’s interest to line up as much as they can. The only way to tell will be having good line ups.

We are very pleased with where we are. In essence we were out of the factory eight days after Quantum Racing and we are in good shape. Yes, we still have a big jobs list to get through.
Olly Cameron, Captain/Project Manager Alegre

Alegre will have a core crew including John Kostecki as tactician, Ross Halcrow trimming and have Matteo Aguardo from Rán Racing on the bow.

Out from Valencia, the new Gladiator has been testing and trialling, as Project Manager Tom Wilson reports:

The boat feels awesome, very lively. We crossed over with Platoon here but were not on the water at the same time. At the moment we have just really been sea trialling. The builders have done a great job. We have a lot of the crew here now but it really will be in the lead up to Valencia that we will get the chance to train as a full team.
Tom Wilson, Project Manager Gladiator

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