High-tech racers put to test
Northland's world-class marine industry has been given a boost with some of the most advanced foiling catamarans in the world to be tested in waters off Bream Bay.
Those involved in the developing the super-charged catamarans, which are capable of zipping across the tops of waves at 53 knots (98km/h) say the testing phase based in Northland could become an annual occurrence.
Kiwi Russell Coutts and American software tycoon Larry Ellison are behind the Sailgp global racing league. Their newclass wingsailed F50 catamarans would go through sea trials off Ruakaka starting this month. Warkworth-based Core Builders Composites has established a technical and development hub on a hardstand compound at Marsden Cove Marina as part of its work to build the catamarans which are to be used in the global Sailgp competitive yachting series in Sydney next year.
Over the next three months Sailgp will take advantage of local resources and experts to conduct testing and ensure the F50s are race-ready by February.
Teams from the United States, Australia, Great Britain, France, Japan and China will compete starting in 2019.