Thanks to the experience and skills acquired on the Vendée Globe 2012 and the technological expertise developed on the M100 trimaran, MerConcept has been selected by APIVIA Mutuelle to enable Charlie Dalin to take the start of the Vendée Globe 2020 with a winning project.

From the design to the construction of his 60-foot single-hull hydrofoil boat, via its technical and sporting preparation, Charlie has been able to take advantage of the experience shared by François Gabart and the professionalism of the whole team to head to the start line on the most complete new generation IMOCA and achieve his performance objectives.

Construction department involvement

A complete and ambitious project was then developed over 4 years from 2018. Boosted by the experience and skills acquired in the Vendée Globe 2012 which was won by François Gabart, 9 MerConcept joined the sailing project’s technical team to help Charlie Dalin and support him in certain fundamental choices around the boat’s design, such as the hydrofoils, the cockpit, the configuration of the rigging and structural systems and other elements.

The boat was then designed by Charlie Dalin, the architect Guillaume Verdier and the MerConcept design office working closely together. The whole IMOCA structure (hull and deck) was constructed and assembled by the CDK yard in Lorient, supported by the project’s technical team. Charlie was able to take advantages of the experience shared by François Gabart and the professionalism of the whole MerConcept team to take advantage of the most advanced new generation IMOCA and achieve his performance objectives.

Ocean racing projects

2 years later, following several sailings, races won and bi-annual construction phases, the boat had developed significantly and appeared highly reliable. This work, combined with the tireless drive of the technical team and Charlie Dalin’s sailing talents, bore fruit: winner of the Transat Jacques Vabre in 2019 with Yann Eliès, second in the Vendée Arctique Les Sables in 2020, the first to cross the finish line of the Vendée Globe 2020-21 (2nd in the general classification after the compensation points were calculated).

Then, in a duo with Paul Meilhat, more recently Charlie won the Rolex Fastnet Race and the 48h Azimut challenge at the start of the 2021 season. They also successfully took part together in the Transat Jacques Vabre 2021, finishing on the second step of the podium.

Finally, Charlie Dalin ended the 2022 season with a second place, in a time of 11 d, 19 h, 28 m and 11s on the 12th edition of the Route du Rhum Destination Guadeloupe, the queen of Transatlantic solo races, which has been connecting Saint-Malo in Brittany with Pointe-à-Pitre in Guadeloupe for 44 years.

Summary of MerConcept activities

  • Design in collaboration with Guillaume Verdier and Charlie Dalin
  • Assembly phase, supporting the CDK teams
  • Composite part production
  • Design and integration of on board systems
  • Technical assistance and performance optimisation
  • Operation of the boat
  • Sports project management