LELYSTAD, september 2017 ~ DNA Performance Sailing, the high-performance sailing unit of the Holland Composites engineering and manufacturing company, says the foiling revolution that the America’s Cup has unleashed means that fast multihulls are no longer for geeks. It can be trailered as its outer hulls fold inward making it only 2.5m wide.
The company has provided its A-cats to AC teams to get used to foiling. DNA makes 4 foiling multihulls, from 5.5 to 14.2m. The latest: the one-design, 10.94m TF10 Foiling Trimaran, a European Yacht of 2018 nominee.
DNA shares a sharp learning curve with us. The TF20 is designed to replicate much of the performance of a modern foiling AC boat but without the crashes, flips or power needs, DNA says. It sails at 2-3 times the wind speed in light conditions. But a recent Mediterranean test run produced an ‘Oops!’ moment: with the TF10 going past 25knots, its high-modulus carbon fiber mast broke.
To DNA, breakages are an important part of developing foiling boats. This one showed “we may be quite a bit faster than the simulations predicted.” says multiple cat world champion and DNA advisor Mischa Heemskerk. Work on design modifications began immediately. “The silver lining is that we had a great month of sailing,” says Heemskerk. “We learned a ton about the boat. Aside from the mast and a couple of insignificant bits and pieces, the boat performed flawlessly.”