Constellation 1964


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Constellation Half Hull by Abordage Expand

 America's Cup Defender, 1964. Sloop designed by Olin J. Stephens.

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Hand-crafted plank-on-frame wood hull with white topsides, red bottom paint .

Hull size: 60cm.

Board size: 75cm X 20cm

Half Hull SizeMedium (75cm X 20cm)
Size75 X 20cm

The 1964 American selection trials took a dramatic turn. During the first half of the trials, Bill Luders' boat, American Eagle, dominated the other competitors. Not having built a new boat during the 1962 selection, Olins Stephens had difficulty in getting back into his stride and his new Twelve, Constellation, was unimpressive, although when he designed her, Olin believed that he was producing an improved version of Columbia. The drawings were made by Mario Tarabocchia.  The new Sparkman & Stephens Twelve however, showed glimmers of potential, but suffered from a chronic lack of organisation.

All of the tenacity and talent of the Stephens brother, Olin for the tactics and Rod for the tuning were needed, to remedy the situation. After a few tactful dismissals crew-wise, Constellation began to face up to American Eagle.

1999 sees a new challenge structure with a dynamic, resourceful and youthful syndicate. Originally called "Yaka," ( French slang for 'just do it' ) the syndicate is the brainchild of Luc Gellusseau and Pierre Mas, of Corum Sailing Team fame.

Gellusseau who now runs the technical and design team, has managed to group together the best bits of the previous French challenges along with a large quantity of new, young talent. He and Mas realised that it was important to stay out of French national politics and to that end the syndicate is a relatively small budget operation.The sponsorship was supplied early by two technology companies, Bouygues Telecom and Transiciel. Le Defi, as it is now called, only dreamt of building one boat and are well organised, completely transparent and very motivated.

Bertrand Pacé is at the helm of the boat "6eme sens"Thierry Pepponet is tactician and the well-respected Dutchman Marcel van Triest is navigator. Pacé, undoubtly France's most talented helmsman today, is a top ranked match racer - world champion in 1994 and runner-up in 1998 - commands huge loyalty amongst his crew and is mature in his approach after three Cups.The "6eme sens" boat design team includes such notables as Bernard Nivelt and Daniel Andrieu along with other names from the French world of composite structures and aerodynamics.

The stated goal of the French Team was to do a good and to get to the Louis Vuitton semi-finals.They succeeded with their victory against America one, and reached to an honorable 6th rank. See also "6eme Sens" half hull.