Since Their arrival on the scene the foils-sporting new generation of Mono 60s have caused a great deal of discussion. There are both supporters and opponents of these new appendages, but a definitive answer to the question of perfromance has not yet been proven In the wake of the recent events pitting the new boats on the block against the older traditional hulls, the latter seemed to have the upper hand in the light wind conditions of both the Artemis Challenge and the Rolex Fastnet.
It was not until the reaching legs during the Azimut Challenge where the newly foiled Mono 60s were able to shine. The appendages will offer the most significant advantage off the breeze, something that has not yet been seen in a competitive event. The Vendee Globe however, the ultimate end game of the IMOCA teams is primarily a downwind event, and the new boats will be in their element.
The experts behind the Gitana Team Mono 60 Edmund de Rothschild, are predicting as much as a 4 day advantage for the new generation, a huge gain over the current record of 84 days.
The new boats are an unquestionable architectural development, and the foils will provide a new challenge to the teams who have opted to equip them, as they race to understand and capitalize on their intricacies before the start of the 2016 Vendee Globe.