Luna Rossa Challenge – the Italian America’s Cup syndicate backed by Prada and Pirelli – has published pictures of its scaled-down test boat sailing for the first time in the waters off the team’s training base in Sardinia.
This makes the Italian squad – the official Challenger of Record for the 36th America’s Cup to be held in Auckland in 2021 – the third team to sail a surrogate test boat. The British team Ineos Team UK were the first to launch their highly modified Quant 28 known as T5, followed by American Magic who used a McConaghy 38 as the base for their test yacht, nicknamed ‘The Mule’.
Of the four “super teams” this leaves only the Defender Emirates team New Zealand yet to launch a test boat.
The images posted on the Luna Rossa Challenge Facebook page reveal the Italian test boat to of a similar size to the British team’s T5, sailed by three people – including newly crowned Moth European champion Francesco Bruni and past Nacra 17 world champion Ruggero Tita – and by the looks of it foiling very comfortably in a moderate breeze.
All four of the super teams are expected to launch their first full-size AC75 in the next few months.