The first Baltic 68 Café Racer was launched on schedule last week. The yacht will undertake trials off Jakobstad before heading for the Mediterranean where she will be available for viewing and aim to take part in September’s Les Voiles de St Tropez.
A “modern weekender with a genuinely green approach”, as described by naval architect Javier Jaudenes: the new Café Racer by Baltic Yachts prioritized performance and ease of handling through the latest rig and sail technology.
Naturally grown boat building materials
Approximately 50% of the Café Racer’s hull and deck mouldings use Bcomp’s ampliTexTM naturally grown flax as a reinforcement. In this case, Baltic employed a SPRINT pre-preg lamination technique developed by Gurit. Flax reduces the overall carbon footprint of the build and works well in conjunction with more conventional advanced composites, used throughout the structure.
Solar panels on the yacht’s superstructure will provide power to run onboard systems, including refrigeration. Sustainably grown Marinedeck cork replaces teak for the Café Racer’s decking material.
Rig and sail technology makes sailing easier
The Baltic 68 Café Racer employs a Marstrom Composite mast, with its sweptback spreaders and wide shroud base: there are no runners or backstays to worry about.
Gybing and tacking, even with a square-top main, require only sheet control with no runners, checkstays or running backstays. However, performance is not compromised.
The way luff load is distributed using Doyle’s Structured Luff Technology plays a critical role in the overall rig and sailplan equation. The rig concept draws on existing technology based on the Bergstrom/Ridder, swept spreader designs from the 1980s. The spreader sweep provides the mast’s aft support that backstays would normally provide. Modern materials linked with Doyle Sails’ Structured Luff technology, Carbo-Link’s carbon standing rigging and the stiffness provided by the advanced composites used in the Café Racer’s hull, mean the advantages of the system can be fully realised without compromising performance.
The use of Doyle Structured Luff Technology means that the sails themselves are designed with reinforcement in the luff area which spreads the load into the sail itself to avoid having to impose large headstay tension to reduce luff sag. It is ideally suited to the backstay-less Marstrom rig.
When it comes to mainsail control, Doyle’s Structured Luff Technology provides so much load bearing ability in the sail itself that powerful luff Cunningham adjustment can be used to induce sail shape in lieu of backstays and runners.
Also key is Carbo-Link carbon fibre standing rigging, in this case CL ELLIPSE, which is aerodynamically profiled for an additional performance edge.
All-electric Café Racer
The Café Racer is equipped twin 15kW Oceanvolt electric motors with saildrive-style legs. While sailing, the freewheeling propellers can, if selected, drive the motors as generators, which in turn charge the Lithium battery banks. The solar panels add to the charging capability and there is a range extender using micro-turbine technology, which will eventually be powered by biofuels or hydrogen. No need for an internal combustion engine.
Jens Paulus and naval architect Javier Jaudenes offer a contemporary style using a range of eco-materials like flax, linen and leather.
Alternatively, Design Unlimited has chosen to capitalise on both the yacht’s eco-credentials and Café Racer-with-attitude approach with an impressive choice of colour palettes, material choices and concepts.
The client for the first Café Racer has chosen fabric and light timber bulkhead finishes, light oak flooring and leather handrail detailing, again by Design Unlimited.
For performance and weight saving, the ends of the yacht are virtually empty with the main saloon forming the focal point of the accommodation and a large owner’s double cabin located just forward. An additional double berth is located to starboard, aft of the companionway.
Following trials in Finland, the first Café Racer will head for the Mediterranean where she will be attending events in Sardinia and the Cote d’Azur. Details of plans to be at the Cannes Yachting Festival and the Monaco Yacht Show will be published later.
LOA 20.73 m (22.66m with bowsprit)
LWL 20.73 m
BEAM 5.63 m
DRAFT 4.00 m
DISPLACEMENT: 22,800 kg
BALLAST: 8.200 kg
(Baltic Yachts, new 68 Café Racer officially launched – Barchemagazine.com – June 2021)