Bright Future for Sail Development with North Sails

Stefano Gattini nations trophy north sails 2019
📸 Stefano Gattini / The Nations Trophy 2019

2019 marked the worldwide debut of the new ClubSwan 36, and getting the first boat sailing was a big step. Our ClubSwan 36 experts all played a part in getting the boat up to speed: working closely with the yacht designers, understanding the rig configuration, and testing our sail designs.

Even before the first boat hit the water, we were working on sail designs that would give clients the best performance. “Being in direct contact with the class and Swan helped us get ahead of the curve,” says North Sails class expert Arnd Howar. “We adopted our designs to the latest adjustments by working directly with the Swan team and designers.”

Four boats competed in the Nations Trophy at the end of the summer, and North Sails couldn’t be more excited about the future of the class. With 15 boats in production, there will be a strong fleet by the end of 2020.

“The ClubSwan 36 is the perfect size,” says Arnd. “No grinders are needed, no ‘super’ athletes or extra strong sailors are required. The boat is very manageable for anyone to race well. 3Di helps keep the sail weights down and there are enough jobs onboard to keep six sailors busy and enjoying sailing the boat.”

Stefano Gattini nations trophy north sails 2019
📸 Stefano Gattini / The Nations Trophy 2019

The 36 is fun to sail because it’s designed well, he adds. “It’s fast and maintains the lifestyle brand of Nautor Swan. There are many events in great sailing locations to meet new people, get some great racing in, and enjoy the social scene. Racing the ClubSwan 36 will give sailors the chance to race against a wide spectrum of talents.”

To prepare for the 2020 season, North will continue to refine the sail designs to match new class rules. “Developments such as a higher ISP (higher spinnaker hoist), that was decided after hours of sail testing,” Arnd explains.

“2019 was a test for everyone, and now we can spend more time fine-tuning the best products for clients,” he says. “Because of the open communication between North and boat owners, we can ensure the best possible result for clients at the very first event in Palma in 2020.”

Class expert Stefano Orlandi is also looking forward to the second season. “Our design leader will be Giovanni Cassinari, one of the top designers here at North Sails. Combining our technology and knowledge with his—we couldn’t think of a better person for the job.”

📸Giulio Testa / The Nations Trophy 2019

Stefano is hoping to get more training events and clinics on the calendar, to work one on one with each team and each owner. “This year we will get even more involved with the class, as well as with the boat yard and designers.”

Marko Marinovic, the North Sails expert in Split, Croatia, has been quite hands-on when it comes to the ClubSwan 36 push. His team spent much of September 2019 testing the class inventory (mainsail, light/medium jib, heavy air jib, A2 and A5), and getting ready for the Nations Cup. “Every day spent on the water is a good thing,” he says. “We are always finding ways to improve. The success at the Nations Trophy was a great way to end the racing season, and the team was chomping at the bit to make more progress in sail development.

“There is no doubt 3Di RAW fits the bill for this boat,” Marko continues. “It will be crucial for boat speed.”

Winter plans include evolving the class sail design, says Ivan Kljakovic-Gaspic, North Sails client and ClubSwan 36 fleet manager in Croatia. “We’ve got all we need here in Split, with three boats to maximize our time on the water. Working with Nautor Swan and North, we plan to finalize the tuning guide and compete in the winter league, which is Split’s winter sailing series.”

North Sails Croatia plans to set up two clinics leading up to the first event of the season: one in March, and one in April. There will be five regattas this season, ending with the World Championship in October. “We are very excited to see the fleet progress,” says Marko.

“In the last few weeks, Giovanni Cassinari and Michele Melandra have been working hard to make improvements in sail shape,” Stefano says. “Our goals this year are to get our clients at the top end of the podium. A new boat means a new challenge, and that’s what we enjoy here at North Sails.”

Stefano Gattini ClubSwan 36 The Nations Trophy 2019
📸 Stefano Gattini / The Nations Trophy 2019

Story Contributors

ClubSwan 36 2020 Outlook headshot
Stefano Orlandi

Sail Expert — Carasco, Italy

Stefano ha cominciato a collaborare con North Sails Group nel 2001. Stefano ha iniziato la sua carriera di velaio sul pianale ed ha prodotto vele North Sails fino al 2011, affiancando sempre di più alla mansione di velaio quella di...

ClubSwan 36 2020 Outlook headshot
Arnd Howar

One Design Expert, Sail Expert — Hamburg, Germany

Arnd Howar joined forces with North Sails in 2007 after earning his degree in Naval Architecture, when he studied the “Investigation of the North Sails design programs using a Farr 40 OD model.” Working at North Sails allows him the opportunity...

ClubSwan 36 2020 Outlook headshot
Marko Marinovic

One Design Expert, Sail Expert — Dugopolje, Croatia

Marko Marinovic is a managing partner at North Sails Croatia, where he's worked since 2004 after earning an engineering degree from the University of Split in maritime transport. He has won all the major Croatian offshore regattas, both fully crewed...

  • #GoBeyond