The Ocean Fifty PLANET R, a ‘turnkey’ project delivered by CDK Technologies


This Monday 19 June, a little less than a year on from the start of construction, the Ocean Fifty PLANET R (CDK-OF-04-2023) designed by the VPLP design office was launched in Lorient, Brittany. The 50-foot trimaran, whose platform, deck hardware and various systems were assembled within the CDK Technologies yard, was delivered as a ‘turnkey’ project to Fabrice Cahierc and his team. Their objective with this brand-new boat is twofold: to perform well in the most prestigious offshore races and help to promote the construction of a carbon-free world.

Kicking off in July 2022 at the CDK Technologies site in Lorient, according to designs by the naval architect Antoine Lauriot Prévost from the VPLP design office, construction of the Ocean Fifty PLANET R is now complete. As such, after eleven months in the yard, the fourth 50-foot multihull and the 43rd boat to be made by CDK Technologies since its creation in 1984, hit the liquid element this Monday. A high point of the project, it was an exciting day for every one of the members of REALITES Sailing Team, and for her skipper Fabrice Cahierc and boat captain, Pierre Loquen-Huchet in particular. Indeed, each of them has been working closely with CDK Technologies since last summer to create a boat that performs well and will be the standard bearer in the struggle to reduce the industry’s CO2 emissions. “We’ve worked hand in hand since last summer to get things moving in the right direction on this new boat built in the moulds of the current Koesio skippered by Erwan Le Roux (recent winner of the Route du Rhum – Destination Guadeloupe plus the Pro Sailing Tour 2023, editor’s note). Using the feedback we’ve obtained from our experiences on V1 of the trimaran, we’ve naturally sought to make some improvements. With this in mind, we’ve tweaked the scantling with the aim of reinforcing the beams and, as an indirect result, made them stiffer, added aerodynamic fairings and enhanced the ergonomics. In short, we’ve carried out a major revamp to come up with an even more honed version than the first,” explains Pierre Loquen-Huchet.

A boat designed to meet the construction challenges of a post-carbon world 

The CDK Technologies teams produced the multihull’s fore and aft beams and sheet traveller before setting to work on assembling the platform, the various systems and the deck hardware, whilst C3 Technologies, based in Périgny, in south-west France, has been tasked with making the centreboard. “The central hull and the floats have been manufactured by Gepeto Composite and Magma Composites. In all, no fewer than 95% of the suppliers and service providers who’ve worked on the boat are based in the Breton region. It’s a logical step for the REALITES Sailing Team, which has set itself the goal of supporting the sailing domain with a C02-free practice and promoting a post-carbon world. With this in mind, we’ve mainly worked with glass, which is just as demanding a material but is more neutral than carbon, which sometimes complicates the manufacture of certain parts. That prompted us to look in depth at finalising the presentation, but it also enabled us to raise our game,” explains Thomas Quéré, project manager within the CDK Technologies yard, which ultimately delivered a ‘turnkey’ boat to Fabrice Cahierc and his team. “The last Ocean Fifty to come out of the CDK Technologies yard was Ciela Village 2 skippered by Thierry Bouchard (today’s Viabilis Oceans skippered by Pierre Quiroga, editor’s note) in 2017. REALITES is obviously a more modern boat, which is highly optimised, very specialized and very complex. It’s a trimaran, which promises to perform well and support strong societal and environmental commitment.”

Rodolphe AVENEL: “I’m proud of all the team, who have created this fabulous boat, from the manufacture through to the assembly. The amount of energy everyone has put into it has made the project a success! I’d like to thank all my colleagues and Réalités Sailing Team for trusting in us.”

Fabrice CAHIERC: “It’s been a whole new adventure for us building our Ocean Fifty Planet-R. It began with a series of negotiations in late 2022 and the decision to go with CDK Technologies was a must thanks to its human values, its sense of priority and its kindness. These prerequisites were a constant throughout the 12 months of work at the yard and ultimately they are a guarantee of a well-constructed boat, a collaboration brimming with technical exchanges, as well as a shared passion for a job well done.”

Romain CACHIA: “The launch of the trimaran Ocean Fifty PLANET R is the crowning achievement of 12 intense months of construction. She is the sistership to a boat, which is currently monopolising Class OCEAN Fifty podiums. As a result, we’ve tried to create just as wonderful a boat by making a few minor tweaks. We’ve worked on making the boat stiffer and as light as possible, which is a very important quality in these multihulls. The team has taken particular care with the aerodynamics of the platform. We’re eager to see how she performs on the water within a highly dynamic class.”

 Stéphane DIGARD: “Very early on, there was a sense of mutual trust between Fabrice Cahierc’s teams and those of CDK Technologies. The constant energy CDK Technologies’ associates invested in the project, together with the unfailing support of Réalités Sailing Team over the past 12 months of work, have made today’s launch of this Ocean Fifty possible. The new boat is the fruit of Fabrice Cahierc’s wealth of experience and, going forward, we hope she will post a series of great feats on the racetrack.”

Pierre LOQUEN: “I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished together and producing a new boat inside a year, (virtually) within the original timeframe, was a wonderful challenge! As Boat Captain, I’m grateful and have great admiration for all the effort put in day to day by the teams from both CDK and REALITES. It’s thanks to the know-how, talent, desire, motivation, dynamism and skill of all the people involved in this project for nearly a year (workshops, subcontractors, shop and so on) that we’re here today. Proof once again that alone we go faster, but together we go further!”

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