We ask top sailors and marine industry gurus to choose the coolest and most innovative yachts of our times. Yoann Richomme nominates the Class 40 Lift 2

The highly competitive Class 40 fleet has long been a proving ground for talent, both for designers and sailors, with many going on to the IMOCA class.

“I’ve had the chance of sailing the best part of a decade on Class 40s – from the 2011 Transat Jacques Vabre with Damien Seguin, to my second Route du Rhum victory in 2022,” says Richomme.

“The Class 40s to me represent the best sailing potential of any glassfibre-built boats: they are now incredible machines capable of 10 knots upwind and sometimes more than 20 reaching and downwind. I’ve had the thrill of crossing the Altantic in less than 14 days beating some IMOCAs across the line.

“The class is very active with four or five designers launching new designs every two to three years, which makes it really interesting to follow. The hull designs have come a long way from the pointy ends to the now very fat bow. Look out for more evolutions to come in the future!

“I’ve especially loved working with the team led by Eric Levet at Lombard Yacht Design, they have designed the two Class 40s that I raced solo.”

Photo: Vincent Olivaud/RDR 2022

Make sure you check out our full list of Coolest Yachts.

Class 40 Lift 2 stats rating

Top speed: 29 knots
LOA: 12.19m/40ft
Launched: 2022
Berths: 2
Price: €800,000
Adrenalin factor: 80%

Yoann Richomme

Yoann Richomme is one of French offshore racing’s biggest talents. He has twice won La Solitaire du Figaro (2016 & 2019), and also twice won the Route du Rhum in the Class 40s in 2018 and 2022. He studied naval architecture at Southampton, and is known for his highly technical approach. He is aiming to compete in his first Vendée Globe in 2024.


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