Boat of the Year Nominee
Photos by Walter Cooper
The slick Motive 25R was a showstopper at the U.S. Sailboat Show in Annapolis (and the Newport International Boatshow where it was named best-in-show). In the BOTY fleet, it was certainly the most unique and most intriguing. According to Motive Trimaran founder Pete Ansel, a special-effects-specialist-turned-boatbuilder, the concept of the Motive 25R is based on the popularity of "raiding" (adventure racing/camping) in Europe, the desire to have something with the performance of a Weta Trimaran and trampoline space on which to sleep.
Ansel also says the design emphasis was on "easy performance," so to achieve this there’s no boom to have to deal with, it has simple sail-control systems, and a clever way to remove the amas for trailering. The judges, however, couldn’t overlook two serious construction issues that appeared during the test sail: The center hull’s deck wasn’t cored so it flexed underfoot and creased beneath the gennaker winch when it was loaded (preventing them from flying the screecher), and the four synthetic cables between the main hull and the amas regularly dragged through the water (the angle of these, said designer Jeremy Wurmfeld, would be adjusted).
The judges also felt that the rig (which did not have a mast rotator, which is important on multihulls) was too short, and as a result, the boat was underpowered. “This is one of those boats that’s great in concept but needs a lot more time in development and workup,” said Greg Stewart. “It wasn’t ready.”
We hope to see a finished version for BOTY 2014 because the potential for something very cool is there in the waiting.