Planet Warriors then Ciela Village then Koesio
Launched in 2020 for Fabrice Cahierc and subsequently picked up by Erwan Le Roux, the Ocean Fifty class (formerly the Multi50 class) generated a lot of preliminary work for the firm because she was the first multihull structure to be designed entirely by VPLP. Up until then this kind of work would have been farmed out, but in 2019 VPLP began developing the necessary software tools. “We came up with a totally new structure,” says Antoine Lauriot-Prévost, “given that the client wanted the lightest boat possible within the rules (3,200 kg for the platform). The tools allowed us to make a broad sweep and try out loads of configurations with the aim of optimizing her weight.”
Weight-saving efforts also included the static parts of the boat, such as the fittings, the engine, the lines, the pipework and the wiring. As a result, Ciela Village is the lightest boat in the Ocean Fifty fleet.
For the hull shapes, VPLP drew on feedback relating to foiling behaviour from the two previous Ocean Fifties designed by the firm (Solidaires en Peloton-ARSEP and Ciela Village, now Leyton), thus turning the research dial significantly towards enhancing performance. In practical terms, a lot of work was done on the longitudinal centres of volume, moving them aft to stop the boat from porpoising too much because of the lack of foiling surfaces in the stern.
Another innovation involved the K-shaped set-up of the beams, with the after beam extending to the foot of the mast. This freed up space so the cockpit could be twice as long and entirely shielded with plenty of room under the canopy. This has been a huge improvement for the skipper’s protection out on the ocean, but also for the Grands Prix because weight could be centred, the winches and other gear having been moved forward. “As a result, the crew are further forward, giving the boat a better trim overall,” says Antoine Lauriot-Prévost.
In 2021, Erwan Le Roux’s Ocean Fifty is renamed Koesio for the Transat Jacques Vabre.