Technical features

Year of construction: 2023

Launch date: February 19, 2024

Shipyard: Structures

Architect: Cabinet Guillaume Verdier

Skipper: Vincent Riou


Launched on February 19, Vincent Riou’s new Class40 is ambitious: a single rudder and a flap on the keel. Ahead of his return to competition on The Transat CIC, departing on April 28, Vincent Riou explains the choices made on this new boat.

“It’s a Structures but a bit different. I’d say that Structures sold me a decked and structured hull. I took care of equipping the boat and then making the rather special parts that are the boat’s appendages. Because the boat is unusual in that, instead of having two rudders and a fixed keel, it has a single rudder and a keel with a trimmer, with a flap. So it’s a conscious architectural choice that I made, and that the Verdier firm studied for me. Apart from that, it’s a Pogo, so there weren’t any major modifications. I just wanted to try out this concept,” explains Vincent Riou.


A single Safran and a keel flap

“Well, we know that with a flap keel, we’re able to perform better than with a fixed keel. So that’s a certainty. Now, with a single rudder, we have less handling, so it’s going to be a little bit more touchy boat to steer. Now, to what extent? We don’t really know yet, because it’s difficult to simulate the behaviour of a boat, even with today’s digital tools. The first trials have been fairly conclusive,  we’re quite happy. In the end, it’s always a question of architectural compromises. You win on one side, you lose on the other. So we know that going upwind, going downwind, it’s going to be a pretty high-performance boat, but during reaching it’s going to be a little more complicated, because when you’ve got a lot of heel with only one rudder, it’s harder to steer. We’re going to need a little time to fine-tune it, and a little time to compare it with the others and draw conclusions. I’m confident that the concept will work now, and that it will be more typical than other boats.