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English Braids flying high!

On behalf of English Braids well done to Michi at Quant Boats, designer Hugh Welbourn and Paul Jennings at Projects by Design for creating such an amazing boat. English Braids used all the latest fibres to create a complete fibre solution for standing and running rigging.

Designer Hugh Welbourn has spent more than 10 years developing the patented DSS, which comprises a retractable hydrofoil that is deployed to leeward on a yacht. The foil provides vertical lift to leeward, improving the yacht’s righting moment, an effect similar to having extra crew on the weather rail or a bigger keel bulb, and in turn dramatically increases performance. DSS style foils are now becoming generally accepted on a wide range of racing yachts, from the multiple Sydney/Hobart winner Wild Oats XI, the range of Infiniti racing yachts, IMOCA 60s, MiniTransAt, and in particular the Quant series of lake racers.

These craft are all designed to stay mostly waterborne, although the foil at speed can provide up to 70% of the displacement of the boat which, along with the increased stability, results in a major leap forward in the speed potential as well as increased comfort from the greatly reduced motion in a seaway. However the Quant 23 is another step along the way altogether, and is logical extension from the Q28 and Q30 that have proved so successful in the lake-racing environment. Designed from the outset to be fully foiling in relatively low wind speeds, this latest project from Michael Aeppli of Quant Boats utilizes the righting moment and lift from a development of the standard DSS configuration to fully support the boat and crew from 8 knots of wind speed and above, aided by a tee foil on the rudder to control the fore and aft trim.

Quant boats have by far the most experience and time with the DSS configurations, so for Michi this was the next dream – for all to be able to fly their boats without the complications of multiple foil controls. Already without any changes the Q23 has reached speeds in the mid-twenties, and with further detail developments much more is expected!

Of paramount importance to the extraordinary success of the project, the weight saving offered by a full package of running and in particular the Dynastay standing rigging from English Braids has been a key item in the weight control of the whole boat. Being nominated in the Special Category for European Boat of the Year has recognized the immediate appeal of the Q23, and the trials of the contestants will take place in Italy at the beginning of October.