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Gunboat 68, a concentrate of VPLP know-how

“All okay from Condor,” read the email sent in early April to all the teams which had contributed to the design and construction of the Condor, a Gunboat 68 launched a few weeks earlier in La Grande Motte. The skipper of the boat (owned by a New Yorker) was sending news from the middle of the Atlantic – “The food is good and the crew are happy!” – which included two key figures: true wind 16 knots, boat’s speed 19 knots…

For the teams at VPLP Design, this first Gunboat launched after the US brand was bought in 2016 by Grand Large Yachting (which also produces the Outremers) was an important development. “Gunboats occupy a middle-ground between racing and cruising, which is precisely the intersection of our expertise,” says Mathias Maurios, project manager for the firm. “It’s been a long time since a project utilized both of our specialties – comfort and performance. It made a lot of sense to do it,” add Marc Van Peteghem and Vincent Lauriot-Prévost.

Gunboats are catamarans that combine luxury and performance, which endows them with a very special DNA that cannot be denied. Carbon fibre construction, centreboards, impeccable finish, cockpit forward and helm in the deckhouse… VPLP Design, with help from the designers Patrick le Quément and Christophe Chedal Anglay, adapted its way of doing things to remain faithful to the brand’s values. On the design side, the firm’s performance department took care of the studies, the CFD, the hydrodynamics and the appendages, while the cruising department managed the general layout, the weight estimate, supervised the construction process and the 3D modelling.

Everyone was delighted with the result! “Our weight objective was ambitious but the teams did a super job because we kept to our target tonnage,” smiles Mathias Maurios. A second Gunboat has been ordered and a third one is under discussion.