Sailors took to the beautiful waters of Lake Garda in Malcesine, Italy last week for the 11th edition of Foiling Week, a sailing event dedicated exclusively to foiling boats and their technologies. The event features the design, testing and racing of boats equipped with wing-like foils that lift the hull out of the water as they gain speed, as well as educational events and foil classes.

One of the most interesting parts of Foiling Week is the SuMoth Challenge, a staged competition among student teams from the best technical universities around the world for the best design, construction and on-water racing of a sustainable foiling moth. Over the three stages of the contest, their innovations will lay the foundation for future sustainable foils and sailboats, as well as equip the more than 300 student participants with incredibly valuable knowledge and hands-on experience that they can carry forward into the industry. As an official partner, Bcomp was happy to be right there with them for the always exciting contest.

In his role as a SuMoth Jury member, Paolo Dassi, Marine & Industry Manager at Bcomp, offered valuable guidance and support to 11 teams of students from six countries competing for points during the first design-focused stage of the Challenge, which unfolds over the months leading up to the event. Drawing upon Bcomp’s extensive real-world experience in many industrial verticals, he shared valuable insights about the use of sustainable natural fibre materials and technologies in marine manufacturing applications. 

As the future leaders of sustainable design, the Foiling SuMoth Challenge Challengeparticipants were able to learn about natural fibre composites and explore the hands-on application of Bcomp’s ampliTex™ and powerRibs™ from the design to performance trials and racing stages. Bio-composites have been used to replace carbon fibres in the design of component parts like fins and the hulls of moths.

“We are very excited by the skills and passion that this next generation of marine engineers and architects are bringing to the challenge of reducing the environmental impacts of the marine sector,” said Paolo Dassi. “If this is evidence of the future of sustainable design, then we are in good hands.”

The designs of eight teams made it through the performance trials and out onto the water for the race. The design stage was won by Canadian team Rafale ETS, followed by Italy’s Politecnico di Torino Sailing Team and the Swedish Chalmers Formula Sailing Team. Last year’s overall leader, the Audace Sailing Team from Italy, won the manufacturing and performance stage of the contest, with the Politecnico team taking second place, followed by the UK’s University of Southampton SuMoth Team in third. After a challenging race in a final stage that put each team’s moth to the ultimate test, the overall winner of the 2024 Foiling SuMoth Challenge was Italy’s own Politecnico di Milano Sailing Team.

We look forward to another exciting year of foil design and racing at the next Foiling SuMoth Challenge. The social theme for the next year’s edition will be Re-Generation, promoting a holistic approach to environmental stewardship and the reduction of anthropogenic impacts on the marine ecosystem, making Foiling Week and the SuMoth Challenge models of inclusion and sustainability for the future.

For more information
SuMoth Challenge www.sumoth.org
Foiling Week www.foilingweek.com

All images and video © We Are Foiling Media

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