THE FOILING FOLLOW-UP — W
TF 10 CLASS ASSOCIATION
ill the high-performance, highdollar and high-tech foiling advances pioneered by the America's Cup "trickle down" to the average sailor? Can everyone realize the magic of these modern underwater wings that lift boats out of the sea and make them fly? It's a question we first asked in The Foiling Feature in January 2018. Around that time, video of the "Foiling Optimist" had gone viral, and perhaps suggested that foiling could be an egalitarian pursuit. While ultimately an experimental novelty boat, the Foiling Opti might have created a buzz around the idea that the average Jane and Joe could get in on the action, instead of just professional sailors in body armor. In fact, foiling trickled down to smaller craft long ago. The multi-million-dollar research-and-development boon created by the 2013 America's Cup, as well as continued advancement in materials, has created ubiquity in small foils for small vessels, like kiteand windsurfers. The upcoming 2020 Olympics in Tokyo will see the firstever foiling boats with the Nacra 17, and the number of foiling dinghies and small multihulls continues to grow. But what about the trickle-down effect to big boats? Could the average Jane and Joe, assuming they had some money to invest, jump on a 30-plus-ft boat with their friends, hoist the sails, Top left: The ocean-racing, foil-assisted Beneteau Figaro 3. Bottom: The coastal-sailing, fully-ﬂying lower those mysterious, curved wings, TF 10. Right: 'A Fond le Girafon' sails out the Golden Gate in last year's Paciﬁc Cup. Inset: Charles and start to carve out some kind of CoDevanneaux, right, and Matthieu Damerval doublehanded to Hawaii faster than boats twice their size. rinthian foiling big-boat niche? Yes. Race; there are a total of six boats in it's well within the capability of an avThe 36-ft TF 10 foiling trimaran, a the fleet. erage racer to foil an entire course." trailerable, coastal and bay racer, and The TF 10 was the brainchild of MalGefter, who comes from a clubthe Beneteau Figaro 3, a foil-assisted colm Gefter, a Newport, Rhode Islandsailing background, said he's always monohull designed for offshore racbased sailor who kept his TF 10 Celeribeen interested in high-performance. ing, both represent dramatically diftas in the Bay last winter. Gefter said "I sailed Melges 32s and the Marström ferent design choices and aspirations, he considered several designers before cat competitively. I've always tried to but are also among the few one-design selecting Morrelli & Melvin. "M&M destay out in front of the best-performing production vessels that, in accordance signed the Nacra 17 that had reached boats out there, and keep an eye on with our theme, the younger genwhat's the most updated form of sailare available for eration, and has ing. I crossed over into multihulls when average-sailor "Don't bother adding weight opened a window I realized what was going on worldconsumption. "We into the class," wide. They'd taken over the faster, most on the windward side, but call the TF 10 the Gefter said, adddaring and extreme parts of sailing." rather, push up on the 'gentleman foiler'," ing that he was Gefter said the monohull formula said Gino Morrelli the driving force relies too heavily on ballast to create leeward side." of Morrelli & Melthat conceived of righting moment, both in the keels vin Design (M&M) bringing all of the and a large crew to hike the boat flat. in Newport Beach, California. "You parameters together — namely safe"If you're trying to go fast, why be sadshould probably wear a helmet if you're ty and performance — for the TF 10. dled with monohull configuration?" sailing it, but five guys from New York "I was the first guy to ask, 'Can Gefter asked. "What a multihull does Yacht Club don't need to wear full body we take all of the things we know so is moves the weight outward — you're armor." When we spoke to Morrelli in that a good racing sailor can step on not saddled with a lead keel and a millate 2017, the first TF 10 had just been to this thing?' We've taken out 25 to lion people on the rail." With the TF 10, launched in Miami, and the fleet has 30 people, and if you spend 10 minGefter said the theory "is basically saybeen slowly building its ranks. Two TF utes with the average skipper, they ing, 'Don't bother adding weight on the 10s sailed in this year's Great Vallejo can foil. They can't keep flying, but windward side, but rather, push up on Page 72 •
• September, 2019
The September 2019 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.