Flying Phantom development

New mast, new sails and new foils equals lighter boat and more stability

Wednesday January 15th 2014, Author: James Boyd, Location: France

After a successful launch of the Flying Phantom One Design at Paris Boat Show, Phantom International is gearing up for production of its fully foiling F18 catamaran. The boat will be on display next week at Dusseldorf Boat Show.

Gurvan Bontemps, who has been testing the Flying Phantom commented: “I’m very happy with the new boat, the one we presented during the Paris Boat Show, that is the first production unit. The last two weeks were dedicated to four sailing sessions. These were very instructive enabling us to discover more about the boat: we have a new mast, new foils, new sails and the boat is much lighter than the prototype.

"We are continuously optimiing the settings and the new L-shaped foils and T-shaped rudders are a success. We experienced different conditions in wind speeds from 6 to 20 knots including flat water and moderate sea.

"The new boat exhibits more stability compared to the prototype, without any impact on performance. Furthermore as the production boat is lighter, take-off is earlier than what we used to have with the prototype and the boat is also foiling very well upwind.

"We had a session with my crew Benjamin Amiot between Saint Lunaire and Saint Malo in areas with high current and significant waves and by changing slightly the foils’ angle of attack, we moved the boat into a mix flying-skimming mode that allowed us to sail at a level of performance that is not achievable with an F18 catamaran. The boat was exhibiting a lot of power and stability with a smooth ride in full control even in difficult sea conditions.

"We also sailed with Louis Viat (Franck Cammas' crew on Groupama C) and François Gabart (winner of the 2013 Vendée Globe). Louis was really surprised by the performance and the simplicity of the Flying Phantom compared to his experience with the C-Class catamaran. François is an experienced F18 sailor and is used to multihulls and he was able to safely fly within the first 10 minutes. After 30 minutes he was pushing the boat in full flying mode with a big smile on his face. For him the biggest surprise was the ability of the Flying Phantom to go between 5 and 10 knots faster than a conventional F18 catamaran, even in moderate conditions.

"We think we have really moved a big step forward in beach catamaran sailing and we will race the boat this coming season in dedicated Flying Phantom events but also in fleet races and long distance races.

"We would like also to thank the early adopters and top multihull sailors that ordered the first examples of Flying Phantom OD and We are looking forward to the first customers’ deliveries in April.”

We just need one in the UK now...

To see some of Pierrick Contin's detail shots of the Flying Phantom - click here

Flying Phantom One design from Jeremie Eloy/ Wanaii Films on Vimeo.

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