December 4, 2013 in At the Helm
The new 100-foot Wally Cento design takes superyacht racing to a new grand-prix level.
By Sailing World’s Dave Reed
A decade ago it was impossible to mistake a Wally design, those queens of the superyacht scene with their expansive and barren teak decks, low-profile deckhouses, cockpit couches, and beamy, aggressive hull lines—aggressive at least for the traditionalists of the Mediterranean yachting set. Beneath those decks were lairs of modern luxury, but when it comes to racing, luxury doesn’t usually equate to lightweight. As eye catching as they were (and still are), when the Wallys of old came out to play among the handicap grand-prix set, they usually struggled.
The stakeholders at Wally Yachts have since reintroduced the brand with what’s called the Wally Cento box rule, which encourages lighter designs while retaining the distinctive Wally look and interior requirements. The newest Wally Cento 100 is Magic Carpet 3, a Reichel/Pugh design with a combination of high life and high performance. It’s good looking, and it isn’t slow, either. Only two weeks after its May 2013 launch, Magic Carpet 3’s owner, Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones, of England, entered it into the Gaastra PalmaVela Regatta in Mallorca, Spain, and swept class line honors, finishing between five and 20 minutes ahead of its closest competitor. At this summer’s Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup it even took a few light-air races, which pleased its project manager, Bob Wylie, a veteran of the grand-prix game. Read the rest of this entry →