Artemis on course with new test boats
Artemis Racing remain on schedule to launch their two-boat test platform in the Great Sound by early spring.
The Swedish challenger's first wing-sail foiling AC45S prototype catamaran is due to arrive back on Island from San Francisco by the end of the month, and its second in February.
Two-boat testing has been a mainstay of America's Cup programmes since the 1980s when the 12-metre class was the racing yacht of choice.
The Artemis catamarans will be stored inside the team's fully operational base at Morgan's Point, along with its AC50, to be used in the Louis Vuitton America's Cup Qualifiers, one-design AC45F and one high performance one-design RC44 monohull racing yacht.
The facility, which measures 145ft by 120ft and which rests on eight acres of land at the eastern tip of Morgan's Point, is built with state-of-the-art technology and can withstand 200mph winds.
The building's heavy steel columns are mounted on swivel joints that allow the structure to sway in strong winds without comprising its structural integrity and are reinforced by braces that are also designed to displace external wind loads.
“We wanted a really heavy building, but also flexible so that the structure can get some motion with the wind,” Pablo Mira, the team's Bermuda operations manager, said.
“Four boats can be maintained and stored here at the same time. Normally, you are doing a two-boat programme and you work on the other one [AC racing yacht].”
The facility will allow Artemis to test and improve their boats on Island. “This is where we are testing all of the secret weapons,” Mira said.
Morgan's Point proved to be a suitable site for Artemis because of the open space that it offers.
“We are not a small team and needed at least the same space that Oracle Team USA has at Dockyard,” Mira said. “But Dockyard was not big enough, so we talked with Morgan's Point, who were really happy for us to come here to this huge space.
“The shore team are working but they are in the middle of the racecourse and that's awesome. Even if you are only a boatbuilder, you look around and you are in the middle of the racecourse with the breeze in your face.
“We are really happy with our time in Bermuda and the support that we have on the Island is incredible. Everyone on the team feels that a big factor in our victory at the last event was that we feel at home.”