Le Defi's Unorhodox America's Cup Base
Le Defi have constructed their base in the only way the French know how, with flare and imagination. Sources suggest the unusual base is more a product of necessity than artistic desire. Whatever the reasoning behind the base the result is spectacular as the photograph below shows.
Constructed entirely out of old containers and scaffolding the building is in sharp contrast to the steel barns surrounding the French base. Inside the building is reported to be nothing short of a rabbit warren with offices and walkways all over the place. It has to be said that this is a useful design feature to confuse and disorientate spies from other syndicates.
The French decided to go with the unorthodox design to save their finances for other uses. Ever since refusing to get involved in French politics to secure government funding Le Defi have struggled to raise the budget needed for an America's Cup campaign. Other sacrifices made by the syndicate include their one boat campaign. This has forced their designers to come up with the radical boat which features so prominently on their base. FRA46 "Sixieme Sens" is narrow and stylish but has performed indifferently in the early races of the Louis Vuitton Cup.
The one great advantage of Le Defi's base is if they fail to win the America's Cup they can simply pack up their base and ship it back to France, using it as a home for the syndicate until the next America's Cup. Who knows the base might well become a regular sight at America's Cups in the future.
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