La Grande-Motte, France
July 26th, 2019
La Grande-Motte, France
July 26th, 2019
On July 23rd, Gunboat launched the second boat of the new Gunboat 68 design from the factory in La Grande Motte, France – just over six months after launching Gunboat 6801 CONDOR.
“We’re thrilled to be presenting Gunboat 68 DASH to her owners and to the world, with this yacht representing owner-selected optimizations geared for world cruising,” Comments Benoit Lebizay, Gunboat Managing Partner. “We now have two boats, with 6801 representing the high-performance owner-selected options like the bigger rig, sail plan, rotating rig, etc., and 6802 electing for a luxury cruising setup. We’ve designed the platform in this way so that the owner sets the cursor.” CONDOR has been actively cruising since March and has just completed her first regatta last week, and DASH will set off soon with plans for purely voyaging.
Gunboat COO William Jelbert notes some of the differences this time around. “Her character already shows! With the Cruising Rig and Sail Plan she’s still an enviable performer, but she’s all about fun in the sun. This may be in part because we’re not cracking ice off the deck during this round of commissioning, and we also have prior knowledge from the first build, making boat number two a little more automatic and less labor intensive. But we also have some new details like where the fishing rods get clipped up and if the dive compressor hose is long enough. It’s hot at the moment, so the air conditioning, a full 70,000 BTUs, is well tuned and pumping. We’re testing the washer/dryer and other luxuries in comfort and style here. Anyone questioning if the Gunboat 68 would be enough of a ‘condo on the water’ for their liking should come and see for themselves!”
The first two Gunboat 68s make their public debut simultaneously in September – with 6802 at the Cannes Yachting Festival from September 10th-15th and 6801 at the Newport International Boat Show from September 12th-15th.
Benoit Lebizay adds, “This milestone comes with a great sense of pride at the factory and increased momentum in the 68 series and beyond. We have a relatively small team, but a dedicated team who are really passionate for the Gunboat community and this vision of ultra-comfortable, high-performance catamaran sailing – designed for global blue-water sailing and highly capable in any setting where you want to enjoy her with family and friends.”
On July 23rd, Gunboat 6802 DASH rolled out of the factory, in the “last push” by the factory team. She was then moved by truck to the waterfront through the narrow corridor between the buildings.
She was splashed and rigged on July 24th, and will undergo commissioning and sea trials over the course of the next 4-5 weeks before handover to the owners. As with 6801, Gunboat is completing over 1200 checkpoints throughout the build and sea trials. This tight process yielded a solid, turnkey yacht for the owners of 6801 and represents the focus on quality and accountability in this new era of Gunboat.
The Gunboat brand was acquired by Grand Large Yachting in 2016, and the 68 series was conceptualized, designed and built by Gunboat in just two and a half years – with a 16-month build time of 6801 from the first carbon laid on September 15th, 2017 to her splash on January 17th, 2019. Just over 6 months later Gunboat 6802 was launched from the factory for the beginning of her commissioning and sea trials.
The North 3di sails are ready to go onto the high modulus Lorima rig, and the performance VPP is posted in the salon as a reference for sea trials. DASH is a Gunboat to the core, capable of crushing miles and cruising comfortably past most high-performance boats.
Interested in more technical detail? Read our series of articles about the design and build of the Gunboat 68.