CDK Technologies delivers the first mast for INEOS Britannia.


Having already taken on some major technological challenges in the construction of the 38 and 42-metre masts for the maxi trimarans Spindrift II and Banque Populaire IX, CDK Technologies’ teams have rallied together their skills and their cutting-edge tools for the benefit of INEOS Britannia, which is competing in the 37th edition of the America’s Cup. The first spar has been delivered to the British Challenger for their AC75, with a second mast due to be completed by late May.

Adopting a philosophy that is constantly calling into question and seeking out fresh challenges helps to make CDK Technologies a competitive, renowned and recognised yard able to promote the most ambitious innovations. As such, last May, when  INEOS Britannia entrusted it with the construction of two masts, Michel Ollivier, Director of special projects for CDK Technologies, project manager Franck Lorriaux and their teams were filled with enthusiasm for this significant new challenge. “That forced us to adapt,particularly in terms of confidentiality, and it has been a fantastic adventure. Today, I’d like to spare a thought for Hubert Desjoyeaux, the yard’s founder. He would have been very proud that CDK Technologies is manufacturing parts for the America’s Cup. The holy grail for sailors, this event is also the holy grail for boat builders!” affirms Michel Ollivier who, for the very first time, having spent a great many years collaborating with the major offshore racing teams, is bringing his expertise and that of the yard to bear for a team competing in the America’s Cup, the most demanding sailing competition since 1851!

Sought-after expertise and cutting-edge tooling

“Initially, we made the mould on the Lorient site with very specific monitoring regarding geometric checks. Next, we began the lay-up on the Port-la-Forêt site, taking extreme care with cutting the material,” explains Stéphane Digard, CEO of CDK Technologies, whose teams have once again created a genuine work of art under Michel Ollivier, using all their expertise and their tooling, and in particular the 120° / 6 bar autoclave measuring 50 metres long and 1.80 metres in diameter. “This long tube – one ofthe largest in Europe – forms part of CDK Technologies’ cutting-edge tooling,enabling us to produce very large high-performance composite parts and to cook some extraordinary elements according to very precise criteria,” he continues.CDK Technologies’ teams have naturally had to fall in line with a certain number of parameters to satisfy the criteria for the America’s Cup rule. “Historically,the masts on the Cup boats are designed in New Zealand. Today is the first time that a spar designed for this competition has been made in a yard in Europe an dit is a mark of genuine confidence for CDK Technologies”, adds Stéphane Digard.

Confidence at the heart of the project

“Our policy of complete transparency and arobust quality system certainly rank among our strongest assets. We’recontinually striving to do things as rigorously as possible. Extreme care has gone into every stage of the build, but ultimately, what we’ve done for the British team corresponds with our usual high standards, even though some of the materials used were bound to be a little more delicate in terms of implementation,” stresses the director of the Breton yard, who has been working hand in hand with the members of the INEOS Britannia, which have been on site since the launch of the project. “There has been a great level of understanding in our working practices,” concludes Michel Ollivier who,following delivery of this first mast on Monday 26 February, must supply a second completely identical one to the British team.

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