Hamburg: At the pinnacle of the yacht racing world sit the offshore ocean racers, designed for maximum performance in the most testing conditions imaginable. “Offshore racers are often on the cutting edge of design technology and in their use of new materials, and our customers are looking to DNV GL to ensure that the investment they make is protected,” says Hasso Hoffmeister, from DNV GL’s Special Craft unit.
On Boxing Day, the yachting world turned its attention to the annual Sydney to Hobart race – one of the most exciting and toughest events in the offshore racing calendar. These finely tuned vessels walk the line between speed and strength. Many of the purpose built ocean racing newbuilds lining up to start will be certified by DNV GL to the new Guidelines for the Structural Design of Racing Yachts > 24 m, including the 60ft Ichi Ban, launched in 2013, the New Zealand built Farr designed 80ft Beau Geste and the 100ft Perpetual Loyal which features America’s Cup winner Tom Slingsby on-board.
The new DNV GL guidelines were developed as a result of work class society’s special craft team undertook with the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), which was looking to update the standards governing offshore racing yachts in the wake of several incidents. The rules are specifically tailored to the specific needs of high performance vessels with amendments which address their specific load cases for keels, keel fatigue assessment, bottom slamming pressures and their design speed.
“We worked closely with the ISAF in establishing the procedures for the structural plan review of racing yachts and soon after began the process of developing our own rule set,” says Hasso Hoffmeister. “Our plan review involves subjecting the design to static and dynamic sea loads, which we can also further examine through the use of 3d models and finite element analysis.”
DNV GL will soon begin the certification of its 50th offshore racing yacht, the 6th in the over 24m class. The as yet unnamed “Wallycento” class yacht, will be the 3rd to be built to the “Guidelines for the Structural Design of Racing Yachts > 24 m”. Designed by Reichel/Pugh in the USA, the new 100ft long yacht is built to the Wallycento class rules, which incorporate the DNV GL “Rules for Racing Yachts”, which mix top-line racing performance with cruising comfort.