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16 May 2005, 03:57 pm
Brasil 1 - A Brazilian Yacht With Globalized Technology
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Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006
São Paulo, Brazil

The first Brazilian boat to take part in the Volvo Ocean Race, Brasil 1 is made up of parts and materials from ten different countries.
The keel and keel bulb of the Brasil 1 are North American. The hydraulic system that moves these components comes from Italy. The sails are from New Zealand and the rudder is Australian. As a whole, the first Brazilian yacht to sail around the world in the Volvo Ocean Race 'originated' in ten different countries.

Besides the United States, Italy, New Zealand and Australia, the 70 foot sailing vessel -the first ever of its type to be built in South America also contains parts or materials from Finland, Sweden, France, Great Britain and Denmark, in addition to Brazil, of course, the place where the boat is being built. 'Translating this into numbers, about 95% of the materials used in the boat are imported,' confirms Horácio CARABELLI, the technical coordinator of the project.

'It makes us proud to build a sailboat this modern in our country, but it also causes some problems,' explains Alan ADLER (BRA), the director of the project and world champion Star sailor in 1989. 'Our materials come from all over the world and customs does not release these right away.'

On average, Brasil 1 has had to wait 25 days from the moment the materials arrive in Brazil until they are released. The solution has been to advance all their orders. 'The keel and keel bulb, for example, were ordered three months in advance', explains CARABELLI. These two pieces, of course, are key in determining the final weight of the boat.

According to the rules, Brasil 1 has to weigh around 13 tonnes without the sails and crew. The goal is to have the keel bulb as heavy as possible. To achieve this, everything that can be lighter, should be built lighter. 'Even a hundred grams can make the difference. The more weight we can put in the keel bulb, the faster our boat will be,' guarantees CARABELLI.

At the shipyard in Indaiatuba, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, the pace remains high. In one month the boat will leave for Rio de Janeiro. In the next few weeks, the boat will be painted and the fittings will be mounted. Next week, the keel and keel bulb arrive at the shipyard. These two parts, built in the United States, will go through a production process again in Indaiatuba to ensure they will be at the ideal weight.

'The bulb arrives heavier than we require. Only when we finish putting everything together will we know exactly what the weight of the boat will be and how much weight we will have to spare for the keel bulb,' said CARABELLI. 'We still have to complete all the electric and electronic systems of the boat, in addition to painting it. According to our schedule, in one month we will put the boat on the road, heading for Rio de Janeiro.' The trip from Indaiatuba to Rio de Janeiro will take up to three days.

Last week, the Minister of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade, Luiz Fernando FURLAN, one of the initial supporters of this Brazilian project, visited the shipyard. 'One of the goals of Lula's government is to show the world that Brazil is not just an exporter of commodities or a friendly country, but also a country that can compete with technological and know-how based projects, such as this vessel,' he confirmed. Before visiting the shipyard, FURLAN visited the Motorola plant in Jaguariúna. 'The yacht and the Motorola plant are two examples of what this country can be in the future. Our biggest challenge is to balance to a more advanced side', he added.

Bruno Doro (As Amended By ISAF)
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