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Alinghi Red Bull Racing christens second AC40

by Alinghi Red Bull Racing 24 May 2023 21:15 BST
Maxime Bachelin (L) and Elena Saez (R) of Alinghi Red Bull Racing seen during the christening of AC40#2 in Barcelona, Spain on May 24 © Alinghi Red Bull Racing / Samo Vidic

The Swiss challenger for the 37th America's Cup has received its second AC40 foiling boat and, following a christening ceremony attended by the Barcelona team, it headed out to the America's Cup race course for a test sail. This one-design boat is key to match race training ahead of the upcoming America's Cup.

In an important step forward in the Swiss campaign for the 37th America's Cup, Alinghi Red Bull Racing — representing the Société Nautique de Genève — has taken delivery of a second AC40 one-design foiling boat meaning the Swiss challenger can soon match race on the America's Cup course in Barcelona.

"This is an important step for us, we will be able to have all members of the Driving Group on the water at the same time and this will raise their performance," explained Sailing Team Advisor Pietro Sibello.

The seven members of the Driving Group will rotate between the boats, accompanied in turn by the two Sailing Team Advisors Pietro Sibello and Dean Barker and by Ernesto Bertarelli.

Christened at the Alinghi Red Bull Racing temporary base in Barcelona by Elena Saez, Shore Team Assistant, AC40 #2 underwent a successful first round of tests out on the water.

"The tow testing validated the boat's structure and allowed us to check the systems, the next step will be to put the sails under tension before being able to shift into second gear," said skipper Arnaud Psarofaghis.

With just four months to go to meeting its rivals for the first time at the opening America's Cup pre-regatta in Vilanova y Geltrù in mid-September, Alinghi Red Bull Racing is getting into race mode and will soon start valuable two-boat training sessions on the water following months of virtual two boat training on a simulator.

"With almost a year to go to the Cup, we are making progress in the campaign and it's time to race!" said Nicolas Charbonnier, from the Driving Group. "This second AC40 will give us a reference point on the water which will allow us to be more efficient in everything we test."

The team will alternate between match racing the two AC40s and training on the AC75 from next week, while the design team in Barcelona and the build team in Ecublens, Switzerland, continue working on the race boat.

Arnaud Psarofaghis, Driving Group: "We are finally sailing two boats, and this completely changes the dynamics of the team. This second boat will allow us to have more sailors on the water and therefore to increase the feedback and learning from everyone. These are precious elements for the development of the project. With the pre-regattas fast approaching, we can specifically train for the competition against the other teams."

Pietro Sibello, Sailing Team Advisor: "Since the beginning of the project, each step has met the plans and expectations, so we are ready to move on to the next one. Until now we have been alone on the water and have taken the time to get to know the AC40 well. A second boat in training will change the dynamic completely. It will also activate the sailors' competitive spirit! We'll be able to challenge each member of the Driving Group in training and that will challenge them internally and raise them up. We will concentrate on match racing, with the contribution of Alfredo Ricci. Dean Barker and I will accompany the sailors on board sometimes to complete the crews."

Nicolas Charbonnier, Driving Group: "With just over a year to go before the Cup, we are moving forward in the campaign. It's time to race! This second AC40 will give us a reference point on the water which will allow us to be more efficient in everything we test. We will be able to continue to alternate between the AC40s and the AC75, although our priority remains BoatZero, where we continue to learn and develop."

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