Following INEOS Team UK "T5" and NYYC American Magic "The Mule", the Italians of Luna Rossa have also launched their first test boat and have started training on the waters of Cagliari (Sardinia), their home base.
In typical America’s Cup fashion, the Challenger of Record have been keeping a very low profile publicly and have not released much information. Still, from the first images published by Luna Rossa on social media, their test boat is able to fly consistently on the water with three sailors onboard and appears to be more similar in dimension to the T5 rather than The Mule.
The Mule is indeed the largest test boat launched so far as, being a modified McConaghy 38, is about 11.5 m long whereas the T5 was originally a Quant 28 (8.5 m). Regardless test boats must be smaller than 12m (39 feet) as per the Protocol and teams are only permitted to launch two AC75 (22.8 m).
The images published by the American, British and Italian teams are showing a very different boat when it comes to hull and foil shapes, confirming that there is no sure path to follow to develop the fastest boat.
The AC75 is one of the most revolutionary monohull concepts, nothing like it has ever been designed so far, therefore no one can be sure of what could transpire. Differences in shape and speed might be substantial and with the first act of the America’s Cup World Series less than one year away, things are quickly coming to a head.
Progress is moving fast at the teams’ HQs, with three test boats on the water and the first generation of AC75 soon to be launched, the Northern Hemisphere summer looks pretty busy and exciting…