While most have been tantalized by the spectacle of the AC 72s ripping around the bay, some may have noticed another fast multihull making waves in San Francisco. Over the past weekend some of the team members were given the opportunity to sail aboard a MOD 70 trimaran owned by Tom Siebel, as well as his Sig 45 catamaran.
Saturday June 29th, Peter, Graham and Coach Charlie went out on the Sig 45, a high-performance racer/cruiser catamaran made of all carbon fiber. After reaching 27 knots with a jib and reefed main, the team was treated to a fly-by from the MOD 70. Graham described the Sig 45 as, ”lots of fun and surprising.” He added that they weren’t expecting to go that fast on a catamaran designed for cruising.
Sunday, Charlie B., Sam, and Coach Charlie had the opportunity to sail on the very MOD70 that dusted them the day prior. Compared to the other multi-hulls that he has sailed in his career, coach Charlie described the MOD as, “massively more powered, but the construction and design are superb which makes a boat that size a lot of fun to sail.” One gust in particular ended up with the boat reaching a velocity of 43 knots which was not only a boat record, but a MOD70 class record as well. “It was surreal,” said Charlie B. of the speed record, “almost felt like it was slow motion.” By the end of the day, the team had gained valuable experience that they would be able to bring with them for both their Extreme 40, but the AC45 as well. “Orion is probably one of five boats in the Bay that can simulate or go faster than an AC45,” Sam commented.
On Monday, Jake L. and Peter sailed aboard the MOD 70, with Tom and the rest of Orion’s crew. With breezes forecasted up to 35 knots, the 43-knot velocity record seemed achievable and the team was quickly put to work. Peter and Jake hit the pedestal grinders hard, sheeting the jibs, gennakers, control lines and dagger boards. “The grinding was a full on work load,” Peter said, “pretty darn physical.” While the guys weren’t hit the 43 knot mark, they still reached 40 knots which is the fastest any of them have ever gone on a sailboat. One of the day’s highlights was a foil-to-foil gybe spectacle from Emirates Team New Zealand’s AC72 less than 150 yards away.
More importantly, they learned valuable lessons that they will be able to transfer to the AC45. “There is so much that goes into one maneuver,” Jake added. “We were able to get into the mentality about what is happening through each maneuver, with so many moving parts at high velocities, sailing on the MOD was an amazing experience.”
The team would like to extend a huge ‘Thank You!’ to Tom Siebel as well as the entire crew of the Sig45 and Orion. The sailing was a surreal experience that we hope to have an opportunity to partake in again.