High speed sail­ing is com­ing to Hamo

Whitsunday Times - - ON THE WATER -

ONE of the world’s fastest sail­boats for its size and type will be scorch­ing across the wa­ters off Hamil­ton Is­land dur­ing next week’s Audi Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week.

The AC45 class cata­ma­ran is one of the most tech­no­log­i­cally ad­vanced sail­boats of mod­ern times – and prob­a­bly the fastest sail­boat ever to be on the wa­ters of the Whit­sun­days. It is ca­pa­ble of sail­ing at more than 35 knots or 65 kilo­me­tres per hour.

The great news for some of the crew from the 181 yachts en­tered for Audi Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week is that they will get the chance to be aboard the cata­ma­ran on a demon­stra­tion run and ex­pe­ri­ence high speed sail­ing like never be­fore.

These ex­hi­bi­tion runs will hap­pen on Dent Pas­sage, im­me­di­ately in front of Hamil­ton Is­land Yacht Club, af­ter rac­ing each day.

The AC45 class was de­signed to pro­vide elite level sailors a smooth tran­si­tion to the in­cred­i­bly fast, Amer­ica’s Cup hy­dro­foil cata­ma­rans. The se­cret to the AC45’s ex­cep­tional speed for its size, is the ef­fi­ciency of its rig - the mast and main­sail form a sin­gle unit in an aero­foil-shaped, low drag, ro­tat­ing wing, which has flaps on the trail­ing edge like an air­craft wing.

The hulls and much of the rig are built from ul­tra-light­weight car­bon fi­bre, so while the hulls are 13.5 me­tres in length, the en­tire boat weighs only 1300 kilo­grams.

Audi Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week will be staged from Au­gust 16-23. The No­tice of Race, en­try form and regatta in­for­ma­tion are on the regatta web­site www.hamil­ton­is­landrace­week.com.au.

HIGH TECH: Team Aus­tralia's AC45 is com­ing to Hamil­ton Is­land Race Week from Au­gust 16-23. Photo by Andrea Francolini / Team Aus­tralia Photo Con­trib­uted

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