New Canadian C-Class challenger

Student team from Montreal has construction well underway with new foiler cat

Friday February 27th 2015, Author: James Boyd, Location: Canada

With the next Little America's Cup set to be held on Lake Geneva this September a new project has emerged from Montreal.

The Rafale C-class catamaran project was started in autumn 2013 by students at the École de Technologie Supérieure. It's aim is to design and build a catamaran to compete in the next C-Class Catamaran World Championship.

Supported by Julien Chaussée, a former member of the British C-Class team Invictus and Simon Joncas, a professor at ETS and specialist in composite materials, 20 undergraduate BAcc and MAcc students are working hard to build this cutting edge catamaran.

With an estimated budget of $ 130,000, the C-Class catamaran project is significant to get to the start line in Geneva in September 2015 with a brand new boat 'made-in Quebec' . Thanks to partnerships with different companies, who make high quality materials and services available for the team, the boat is schedule to be on the water in the summer of 2015.

The Montreal team intends to be the first ever student team to compete in the Little America's Cup up against well-established teams such as Groupama and Hydros.

Over the course of the two year project, students have been deployed in all areas of the project from the design to the construction of the boat which will take place in the school's workshops. This has had to be done in a relatively short time, taking up nights and weekends, as the project is in addition to the student's work full-time on their engineering degrees.

The design of the new catamaran will include hydrofoil rudders and daggerboards as featured on the leading boats that competing in the last Little America's Cup in Falmouth two years ago. As part of its Hydrofoil development, the Rafake team designed and manufactured its first set of foils that were fitted to a 20ft catamaran last autumn with successful first flights taking place during testing in November 2014. Fabrication of the foils was made in partnership with Mystery Composite, a catamaran builder near Montréal.

At present construction of the team's new 25ft long C-Class catamaran is in full swing and many parts are ready to be assembled. Launch is scheduled for May to allow a three month work-up period in the Montreal area, before the boat is shipped by container to Geneva.

To ensure professionalism and competitiveness, Team Rafale is affiliated with two former members of the Canadian 49er team - Marc Farmer and Tej Trevor Parekh, who will sail the boat during September's event. The team is following the footsteps of the Canadians Fred Eaton and Magnus Clarke, who won the 2007 Little America's Cup in Toronto and then defended in 2010 in Newport before finishing third in 2013 in Falmouth aboard Fill your hands.

The team is continuing to look for partners and sources of funding to complete the budget for the campaign. Become a partner or support the project by making a donation here.


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