Wednesday, 30 May 2007

Multihull / trimaran mindset in Europe?

Having our office in Stockholm Sweden we are of course influenced by local multihull activities, which as I wrote in a previous blog entry are growing substantially. Of course multihull entries in races are still a fraction of the total however it is being generally recognized that in the last one or two years a lot of races now as standard are open to multihulls. Racing is done according to the Swedish LYS rating rules. This rating also allows to appoint a total winner among all classes (mono and multihulls), an opportunity which many organizers use.
Of course it is quite tough to win overall with a multihull, however it adds to your ego passing through fields of monohulls classes, especially since one the last few years enjoys admiration rather than a puzzled or scared UFO encounter facial expression.

Multihulls also are quite active on Lake Geneva with their big racing event Bol d’Or coming up. Obviously Mr Bertarelli and the D├ęcision 35s catamarans are an attraction (http://www.decision.ch/ANG/default.htm) on the lake, however on the very extreme end of multihulls. Soon having two Seaon 96crb on Lake Geneva we of course would be delighted to grow a fleet for racing and high performance cruising there.

Obviously there are a lot of multihull activities around Europe – it would be nice to share some experiences on the multihull mindset among monohull sailors around Europe. I assume many of us at least initially have encountered arguments such as “multihulls cannot sail upwind”, “multihulls cannot tack”, “not appreciated in harbours” (due to space needed) etc. however I assume we have passed this first level of “scepticism”.
What is your experience? Are multihulls gaining admiration and interest? Once tried most sailors are “hooked on the feeling”? What is the multihull mindset among monohull sailors?

/Jan