GC32 World Championship

After the inaugural class championship in March 2017 in Oman, which brought together 11 GC32s, and a first World Championship wih 13 boats in Riva del Garda in 2018, the city of Lagos (Portugal) hosted the second edition at the end of June 2019...competition that the team won! In 2021 in Villasimius, Alinghi ends in second place behind Red Bull.


For the first time since the release of the GC32 in 2012, all of the boats built and participating in the Extreme Sailing Series and the GC32 Racing Tour were invited to Oman in March 2017 to compete in the inaugural class championship. At the end of that year, the GC32 class obtained the official recognition from the International Sailing Federation (World Sailing), thereby receiving the right to organise an annual competion with a World Championship designation.

But, to return to March 2017 and the championship credited as the first such meeting of its kind...Alinghi faced ten international teams over 16 races in Oman, and it was Oman Air who won the meeting, with Alinghi and SAP taking the remaining podium places. In 2018, 13 boats lined-up on Lake Garda, with Alinghi finishing 4th in the general classification and 1st in the rankings of boats sailed by owner-helmsmen. In 2019, Alinghi is crowned World champion, ahead of Team Tilt and INEOS Rebels UK.
No championship held in 2020 due to Covid-19 context, and in 2021, the team ends in second place behind Red Bull (but even in terms of points!).

The format of the racing differs slightly from that of the annual championship. While the course types are identical, the distance between the marks are greater, meaning that races last longer. One effect of this is that, with longer upwind and downwind legs, the conditions could exist for a team to break the GC32 speed record in competition.

Learn more about the GC32 World Championship >


The GC32 is a one-design, even down to the sails (and the number of sails teams are permitted to use during the season). Its main lifting foils are big, meaning it can take off in a wide range of conditions and can also foil upwind, albeit with 18-20 knots of wind. There are no hydraulics – instead, teams adjust the foils manually; just another way in which the emphasis is on the sailors to get the most out their machines.

  • Length (overall): 12.00m
  • Length (hull): 10.00m
  • Beam: 6.00m
  • Weight: 750 kg
  • Draft (upwind): 2.10m
  • Draft (downwind): 1.60m
  • Mast height (above deck): 16.50m
  • Bowsprit length: 6.60m
  • Mainsail: 60.00m²
  • Jib: 23.50m²
  • Gennaker: 90.00m²

GC32 World Championship News

GC32 vice-world champion, tied on points with Red Bull

19 September, 2021

Reigning world champion, Alinghi finished second at the GC32 Worlds in Villasimius, Italy. Tied on points with Red Bull Sailing Team after 14 races, the rule says the one finishing before the other in the last race ends up in front overall. The team had an excellent last day but broke its starboard foil two-thirds of the way into the last race. The hazards of motor sports! The double Olympic champions Hagara / Steinacher won gold while a second Swiss team, Team Tilt (Sébastien Schneiter), completed the podium. Alinghi continues to lead the annual "GC32 Racing Tour" Championship. Arnaud Psarofaghis: "We had everything to play for until the last day, it was an exciting world championship! The world title didn't escape us only on the last round, though. We lacked consistency this week. We lost too many points in the first few days in situations that could have been avoided. Today we raced really well to make up the gap, then take the lead before the last race and I'm really happy with the performance on board. Congratulations to Roman, Hans Peter and all their team, it was a pleasure to race against them!" Varied and complicated conditions Eight teams competed in fourteen races in Sardinia in mixed conditions during the four days of competition. Very light breeze and rain played the spoilsport during the first two days, with respectively one and three races validated. On Saturday and Sunday, the 32-foot foilers were finally able to complete the full programme by lining up for ten races in magnificent conditions. Timothé Lapauw: "We had a very good last day. In strong air we have good speed and efficient manoeuvres. The wind was very variable the first two days, which made it difficult on board. The race patterns were not clear and the strategy difficult to establish." The comeback Helmed by Arnaud Psarofaghis, Alinghi were seven points behind the leaders entering into the last day of competition. With three wins and a second place, the reigning world champions made a magnificent comeback this Sunday, September 19, to finish tied on points with Red Bull. Nicolas Charbonnier: "We have sailed among a fleet of eight boats here compared to six in the other races this season. It's still a small fleet, but it's always interesting the more numerous it is. The classification was really tight, unlike the other GC32 races this season. We had fewer good days during these Worlds, but reacted very well and are very happy to end on such a good day. Despite the damage..." Unfortunate foil damage in the last race A mechanical sport like competitive sailing generates its share of complications, sometimes beyond the control of the team members. Alinghi paid the price in the last race of this championship. With the team heading for overall victory by sailing at the head of the fleet and having started race 14 with three points lead on Red Bull, the team's starboard foil (the right part allowing the raising of the boat above the water) broke into two pieces. Bryan Mettraux: "Every year, at the start of the season, we do NDT (non-destructive testing), an ultrasound of all the carbon parts - the hulls, foils, beams and mast. This scanner allows us to check the state of wear of the boat, to identify and repair any initial cracks. We did not observe anything during the last scan and no signs of wear have been visible to the naked eye since, unlike a rope or block, which show weaknesses visually." A first victory for Red Bull The third of the four stages of the 2021 season, the Villasimius Cup, which also served as the World Championship, is won by Red Bull. The Austrians even sign for their very first victory since arriving on the circuit! The owner-helmsman classification (Owner Driver Trophy) goes to Erik Maris (Zoulou). Yves Detrey: "Red Bull sailed well all week, while our first races were more complicated. We are obviously disappointed to have suffered this foil breakage in the last race and not to have been able to fight to the end. In the history of the GC32 fleet, this is the first time that a foil has broken like this." Still leading the GC32 Racing Tour 2021 After three stages of the annual championship, Alinghi maintains the lead in the general classification, three points ahead of Red Bull. The team will stay in Italy and return to Scarlino for the last TF35 event of the season, September 23-26. As for the GC32 Racing Tour, the fourth and final stage of the season will be held in early November in San Pedro del Piñatar (Mar Menor), Spain. General classification after 14 races - GC32 World Championship and Villasimius Cup (3rd round of the annual championship) 1st - Red Bull Sailing Team: 43 points 2nd - Alinghi: 43 points 3rd - Team Tilt: 50 points 4th - Black Star Sailing Team: 51 points 5th - Team Rockwool racing: 58 points 6th - Zoulou: 60 points 7th - Argo: 90 points 8th - Swiss Foiling Academy: 109 points Extract from the provisional general classification of the GC32 Racing Tour after three races 1st - Alinghi: 4 points 2nd - Red Bull Sailing Team: 7 points 3rd - Black Star Sailing Team: 9 points Click here for the full results. Options to review the racing modeled in 2D thanks to the gps tracker placed on each boat from the first to the fourth days of competition: Tractrac website, or via these free apps (click here for an Iphone, or here for an Android). To find out more To learn more about the race monitoring system, the team composition and the GC32 Racing Tour in general, a summary of the event is here. #GoAlinghiGo  //  GC32racingtour Credit for photos © Sailing Energy / GC32 Racing Tour 2021

GC32 World Champions

1 July, 2019

A performance from the whole team from the first to the last delivers GC32 World title. After four intense days in the waters of Lagos (Portugal) to decide between ten world-class teams from seven countries, Alinghi is crowned GC32 World Champion by recording 12 podium-place finishes (including eight wins) in eighteen races. For the second year in a row, Switzerland wins. "Who would have thought that one would have to be Swiss in order to be GC32 World Champion”, joked the team’s helmsman, Arnaud Psarofaghis, at the prize-giving ceremony. Team Tilt, the former World Champion, finished in second place, ahead of INEOS Rebels UK, the team of Ben Ainslie, four-time Olympic gold medalist. Ernesto Bertarelli, Alinghi’s skipper who had to remain in Switzerland during the competition, said: "I'm proud of my team. Arnaud, Nico, Bryan, Tim and Yves sailed brilliantly. This title is the result of a lot of work upstream, both on the water and on land. I would also like to congratulate the technical team, David and João, and the coaches, Nils and Pierre-Yves, whose work contributes so much to great results such as this one." Arnaud Psarofaghis, helmsman and co-skipper: "I'm very happy. The guys on board and the technical team have done a great job. We even managed to secure the win with two races to go and that’s a great result given the calibre of the fleet. And with Tilt in second place, it shows that sailing in Switzerland is doing well." Yves Detrey, bowman: "It's a long-term job that pays off. We are not World Champion because of these four days. It’s happened because of months and years of hard work." Nils Frei, coach: "You couldn’t really say that the team is missing titles from its list of achievements. A two-time winner of the America's Cup, seven victories in the Bol d'Or and the D35 Trophy, and four-time Extreme Sailing Series winner; the team is constantly evolving, renewing itself and seeking to improve. “But a World Champion title is really nice. The opportunity to win a world class championship does not come around every day. Indeed, you’d need to go back to 2001 to see the team’s last world crown, which was in the Farr 40." It is therefore with joy that the team records this new victory, which is the fruit of many years of work on the GC32: working to learn its behaviours, to tame it, to repair it and to optimise it. The work done at team-level has also been huge and fundamental: the team’s composition, training, adaptability, not least in the face of injury-enforced absences, its member’s knowledge of one another and their ability to come together as one. Pierre-Yves Jorand, Team Director: "The knowledge of the boat and teamwork allowed us to compete in a variety of conditions this week in Lagos. We started the racing with several reaching starts in strong winds, then, in the middle of the championship, we sailed in light conditions with upwind starts style. Each time the guys were able to find the keys to make good starts, go to the right side of the course and especially to run the GC32 fast, very fasty, while manoeuvring wonderfully. Congratulations to all, as well as to the organising committee who delivered a very good event both on the water and on shore." One special mention for Bryan Mettraux, the sailor who retains his title of World Champion given that he was aboard Team Tilt last year, during the first world championship of the series in Riva del Garda. Congratulations also to the American team Argo, led by Jason Carroll, who wins the world title of owner-driver. The whole team would like to thank its supporters and partners for their daily support. After the dismantling of the boat, the team will enjoy a few days of rest before regrouping in Palma de Mallorca at the end of July for the 3rd stage of the GC32 Racing Tour. Click here for the general ranking after 18 races. To find out more #gc32worlds #gc32racingtour #GoAlinghiGo To find out more about how to follow the racing, the team composition and the circuit in general, find the event recap by clicking here. Photo credits ©Sailing Energy/GC32 Racing Tour

GC32 World championship: 4th overall; 1st of the owner-driver

27 May, 2018

- 13 flying boats representing nine nations - 65 international-level sailors - Four days of racing and 16 races, all amid various conditions - Team Tilt the World Champion (Hopp Schwiz!), - Alinghi, helmed by Ernesto Bertarelli, 4th overall and winner of the owner-driver championship Thus ended the inaugural GC32 World championship, which was organised by the Fraglia Vela Riva and the class representatives. Ernesto Bertarelli, skipper-helmsman: "I am satisfied with our result. Of course, I would have preferred to make the podium, but considering the fact that the 100% professional teams that finished above us – and indeed some of them beneath us –, we can be satisfied with our 4th place overall and also to get the title of owner-driver. "The reality is that we have not sailed together enough in this format. Arnaud has changed his position from helm to tactician, while we'd have to go back to last year for the previous time I took a GC32 helm in a regatta. In 2018, we trained two days in Oman two months ago and two days last week in Riva. "I think I have been able to steer the boat in its modes, to manage the foiling while at the same time remaining cautious, and I found that we were pretty fast around the course! But then it's the communication that we have to work on. At this level of competition, with each crew as competent as one another on the manoeuvres around the marks, what makes the difference is the communication and decision-making, and I feel we were a little bit behind here. "Anyway, I had a lot of fun racing, especially during the windy Friday. It's a beautiful class, a great boat, foiling catamarans are the future of sailing, I'll be back! "The Alinghi team sends our heartfelt congratulations to Team Tilt for their World title. Their victory is fantastic for Swiss sailing. Out of 13 teams, Switzerland was the most represented nation with three boats. I am very proud of this young generation of talented sailors."   Find the video of the reactions of the team back to dock by clicking here. The series of spring races continues next weekend with the D35 on Lake Geneva and the Grand Prix of Versoix on Friday 1st June and Sunday 3rd of June, with, in between, the classic Genève-Rolle-Genève on Saturday. Overall ranking after 16 races 1. Team Tilt (SUI) - 60 points 2. SAP Extreme Sailing Team (DEN) - 68 points 3. Oman Air (OMA) - 79 points 4. Alinghi (SUI) - 88 points (1st owner-driver) 5. INEOS Rebels UK (GBR) - 88 points Click here for the overall ranking in its entirety and the ranking of owner-driver. To find out more Event hashtags #GoAlinghiGo // #GC32worlds Credit for photos © Martina Orsini, Pedro Martinez, Lloyd Images

2nd round of the D35 Trophy, as well as the GC32 World Championship

17 May, 2018

From May the 19th to the 27th, Alinghi will be taking-on seven full days of racing over two events: > The second stage of the D35 Trophy takes place from Saturday the 19th to the 21st of May. Organised by the Versoix Yacht Club, it again will bring together the nine boats competing for the 2018 Championship. > Following its official recognition as a class by the international federation, World Sailing, last December, the very first GC32 World Championship will take place on the iconic Lake Garda between the 24th and 27th of May. Some 13 to 15 boats have responded to the invitation issued by Fraglia Vela Riva and the GC32 Class and will line-up against one another to compete for the ultimate title. Pierre-Yves Jorand, Alinghi's team director, said: "With these two regattas so close together we will have to know how to best stay focused day after day, and we will take advantage of every precious free moment so as to optimise our recovery phases. But, of course, we're delighted to be involved with both, as competition is what we live for. The GC32 World Championship will be magnificent, what with the teams taking part and the ideal setting for sailing that Lake Garda usually provides." Follow the action On Twitter @teamalinghi > Updates after each race, as well as photos and video clips On Facebook @teamalinghi and Instagram @alinghi > Interviews, videos and photos On our website > News and photos To find out more // Event hashtags #GoAlinghiGo // #D35Trophy // #GC32worlds To find out more about how to follow the racing, the composition of the team and the D35 Trophy in general, find a recap of the competition by clicking here. Credit for photos © Lloyd Images