D35 Trophy

The D35 was developed as a response to the ever-increasing costs and extremism in multihull sailing on Lake Geneva. A group of owners, including Ernesto Bertarelli, got together with designer Sebastien Schmidt to bring to life a fast, high-tech, but affordable one-design catamaran. In 2004, the first eight boats were launched, since which the class has gone up to twelve boats built.


When the first D35s were launched in 2004, an annual circuit was created. The Julius Baer Challenge combined the classic Lake Geneva regattas – including the Bol d’Or – with several Grand Prix events exclusive to the D35 class. 

Then called the Vulcain Trophy until 2014, the championship is from 2015 known as the D35 Trophy. As well as the Bol d’Or – the classic end-to-end race on Lake Geneva – it includes the famous Genève-Rolle-Genève, and five to six Grands Prix. With points awarded for each event, competition for first place on the championship podium is often fierce.

Out of 16 championships, Alinghi is proud to have won eight D35 titles, continuing a proud tradition of Lake Geneva sailing.

Explore the D35 Trophy >


The design of the D35 is an evolution of Sebastien Schmidt’s previous work, the 40ft Alinghi catamaran Le Black, with a central pod used to tie the structure together and withstand the stresses from the platform and rig. The structure is light, which – when coupled with a wing mast that can be rotated up to 45 degrees and a maximum of 230m² sailplan – means that the boat can hit top speeds of some 27 knots.

  • Construction: Decision SA
  • Length (Overall): 14.95m
  • Length (Hull): 10.81m
  • Width (Overall): 8.74m
  • Width (Hull): 6.89m
  • Dry Weight: 1,200kg
  • Main Sail Area: 81.6m²
  • Solent Area: 40.7m²
  • Drifter Area: 80m²
  • Gennaker Area: 150m²
  • Top Speed: 27 knots
  • Crew: mini 5 - maxi 7, 470kg (maximum) 

D35 Trophy News

Alinghi wins its eighth D35 Trophy in 16 seasons

22 September, 2019

The 16th and final season for the Decision 35 had seven events in 2019, but six were enough for Alinghi to register its name on the trophy for the eighth time. In which case, why race in this weekend's closing Grand Prix organised by the Société Nautique de Genève? Ernesto Bertarelli, helmsman: "For this very last test of the D35 as a class – this end of an era – Alinghi's D35 could never stay at the dock with our sailors watching the other teams race! We sailed for the pleasure, tried to win, and trying also not to interfere too much on the ranking of other boats. We met competition stronger than us this weekend with Realteam winning (19 points) and Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier who finished just in front of us, following the tiebreaker system in the event of a tie (23 points each)." Pierre-Yves Jorand, team director and helmsman for the Grand Prix's last day: "Ernesto offered me the D35 helm for this last day of racing. Thanks to him and to the crew who gave me good advice. We cross the finish line of the very last race in the history of the D35 in first position... pure happiness after a port start at the committee boat." A little history... In 2019, 37 races were launched in the D35 Trophy, including two Geneva classics, with the Genève-Rolle-Genève and the Bol d'Or. Since 2004 and the start of the D35 championship, there have been just over 700 validated races, up to 12 one-design multihulls on the same starting line, a series of experienced sailors coming to test their skills, Bol d'Ors regularly won by the D35 in front of all other classes etc., and three teams there from the start to finish: Okalys, Zen and Alinghi. The Decision 35 was born thanks to the will of a group of owners wishing to sail on equal terms on one-design boats, affordable and designed to perform on Lake Geneva. Following the 2003 Bol d'Or and its devastating conditions, the order book for the first eight boats was signed on a piece of tablecloth. Architect Sébastien Schmidt conceived the D35 in close collaboration with experienced sailors and its construction took place during the winter of 2003/2004. After 16 seasons, we can say that the bet has most definitely paid off and wish equal success to the new TF35 class that will take off in 2020. Ernesto Bertarelli, helmsman: "It obviously causes a bit of a pang to think that the D35 championship is coming to an end because it's the last time we've sailed as a fleet on these beautiful boats. This last Grand Prix had a special flavour and I am obviously happy to have won the 2019 championship. What better way than to finish the saga of the D35 with our eighth win in sixteen terrific seasons? That said, the arrival of the TF35 next year promises even more thrills and will keep Lake Geneva racing at the forefront of what is being done in the world of sailing and foiling." Nicolas Charbonnier, tactician: "I think we're very lucky to have a team that changes very little. We really work together and how we communicate is a huge advantage at our level. We are also sailing and working together outside of the D35, with the GC32. This allows us to see a lot of situations, to sail a lot and, for me, it's the key to us continuing to progress all the time, to question ourselves, to make regattas and to learn from our mistakes." Are we able to decipher the conditions of Lake Geneva? "We still don't get it always right! But in the end, it's a race. We know we're not going to do everything right, we just have to make fewer mistakes than others. Especially when you sail on the lake because the winds are a little more erratic than on the sea. We must try to limit the damage when we make the wrong choice, always push ahead and question yourself." Bryan Mettraux, sail trimmer (who joined Alinghi this season): "This is my 3rd D35 championship win, after 2012 with Realteam and 2015 with Tilt. Both times right in front of Alinghi and both times with Arnaud on board ;-) "The operations are quite similar from one team to another. With the level of knowledge we have of the boat, and that our competitors also have, it's the details that make the difference. When a team wins, it's because they've been better at handling small details in all phases of the race." Next appointments for the team: > Sailing on the TF35 boat zero in October to continue the development work of this new foiler > The last event of the GC32 Racing Tour from 6 to 9 November in Oman where the championship title is at stake! Closing Grand Prix, ranking after 9 races (the worst score being withdrawn): 1st - Realteam Sailing: 19 points 2nd- Ylliam Comptoir Immobilier: 23 points 3rd - Alinghi: 23 points 2019 D35 Trophy final ranking after 7 events (the worst score being withdrawn): 1st - Alinghi: 9 points 2nd - Ylliam Comptoir Immobilier: 14 points 3rd – Realteam Sailing: 22 points Click here for all the results To find out more #GoAlinghiGo #D35Trophy To find out more about how to follow the racing, the team composition and the circuit in general, find the event recap by clicking here. Photo credits ©Loris Von Siebenthal

Alinghi's D35 wins "at home"

9 September, 2019

The traditions were good: a warm welcome and a flawless organisation by the Club nautique de Crans for the traditional Alinghi Grand Prix, the raclette (eight machines melting the cheese!) shared by all competitors, a teasing wind and rain to announce the arrival of autumn... And the novelties were appreciated: the 'young' series of catamarans, Nacra 15, responded to the invitation to race and the Société nautique de Nyon also strengthened the ranks. At the end of the five validated races, Alinghi confirms its good form in the "Grand Prix" form of the races and took the win ahead of Eleven Sailing Team and Realteam Sailing. Ernesto Bertarelli, helmsman "Very nice weekend despite the few races. We waited a lot on the water, but the races we did sail were very beautiful, especially last night in the Joran, which was fabulous with a nice breeze. And then we sailed well. "A special mention about our start on our last race with a starboard position windward, launched to cover the entire fleet. The level of the sailors is strong on Lake Geneva, the fleet is compact and so it's nice when you get to start like this." Bryan Mettraux, trimmer "The key thing is consistency. Try to do the simple things and do them well. That's what pays on the D35. "Nico was also strong this weekend. Good starts, clean manoeuvres and good speed, all matched with a good tactics is a winning ticket. "Our main opponent in the championship (Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier) could not allow for a single mistake and I think that they focused more on us than on themselves. It's complicated to sail this way. They are super good, they know very well how to race, but here they have missed." Nicolas Charbonnier, tactician "We spent a lot of time on the water waiting for the wind, while trying to stay alert about what was happening or what could happen, so that we would be right in the game when the regattas were launched. We did five rounds, albeit four for us because we had enough of a lead to win before the end (the worst score being removed from four races validated). We really sailed well by being very regular at the starts, which, having executed well, we could easily go to the side of the race course that we wanted. A dream weekend. Even the traditional raclette on Saturday night was fabulous!" In the provisional season rankings, Alinghi increased its lead with six points on the clock. Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier has 12 and Eleven Sailing Team 17. While waiting for the closing Grand Prix of the 2019 D35 Championship (September 20th and 21st at the SNG), the team will head towards Riva del Garda this Monday morning for the fourth stage of the GC32 Racing Tour (regattas from September 12th to 15th). Grand Prix Alinghi de Crans, ranking after five races (the worst score being withdrawn): 1st - Alinghi: 6 points 2nd - Eleven Sailing Team: 10 points 3rd - Realteam Sailing: 12 points Click here for all the results. To find out more #GoAlinghiGo #D35Trophy To find out more about how to follow the racing, the team composition and the circuit in general, find the event recap by clicking here. Photo credits ©Loris Von Siebenthal

A victory as the D35 Trophy resumes

1 September, 2019

After the summer break, the D35 Trophy returns for three end-of-season events throughout September. The Club Nautique de Versoix has just completed its organisation of a 16th Grand 16 years of the D35 Championship! After six races, Alinghi took the win (8pts) ahead of Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier (14pts) and Realteam (15pts). Following were Okalys Youth Project, Cabestan and Eleven Sailing Team, tied for points (twenty-two). Zen Too closed the racing a point behind. As highlighted by Bryan Mettraux in his interviews on social media afterwards, this win marks a faultless record for the team in the Grand Prix format so far, with Alinghi winning three from three in 2019. Nils Frei, mainsail trimmer said: "When you look at the points at the end, it seems that it was comfortable, but that doesn't tell the whole story. The margins of victory were decided at the first crossing of the boats, or at the windward gate. It was tight! "We are happy to have sailed well. It was a nice regatta. We did well to get six races under our belt despite a bad weather forecast. "Since the beginning of this season, my two roles (coach and sailor) have been different, but complementary. For sure, I enjoy the sailing, especially on these boats that we know very well. They are really made for the conditions of the lake." At this stage of the season, Alinghi leads the trophy, three points ahead of Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier and eight of Zen Too. The team continues its racing next weekend with the 6th stage of the D35 circuit on the Crans-Près-Céligny side for the Alinghi Grand Prix, which will also see the youth series of the Nacra 15 catamarans taking place. Grand Prix de Versoix, ranking after six races (the worst score being withdrawn): 1st - Alinghi: 8 points 2nd - Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier: 14 points 3rd - Realteam Sailing: 15 points Click here for all the results. To find out more #GoAlinghiGo #D35Trophy To find out more about how to follow the racing, the team composition and the circuit in general, find the event recap by clicking here. Photo credits ©Loris Von Siebenthal

81st Bol d'Or: dantesque conditions and a 3rd place overall

16 June, 2019

57 knots were displayed on the boat's instruments! Not for the speed of our D35, but for the wind speed that blew during the ferocious storm that rained down during the 81st Bol d'Or. We spare a thought to the competitors who suffered damage to their boats, and also to the rescue teams and volunteers on the ground. While the record for this legendary event remains at 5: 01'50 '' (Triga IV in 1994), the M1 Ladycat powered by Spindrift managed the calm before and after the storm, winning the race in 10 hours, 36 minutes and 21 seconds. Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier were the first D35 and second overall in 10h39'38', the Alinghi D35 completed the podium with a time of 10h42'35. Nicolas Charbonnier, tactician: "This year, I will remember above all the incredible storm that we had to cross. It was a hell of an experience, like nothing I've been through on a boat. We congratulate Spindrift for their victory and we are happy to make the podium." Arnaud Psarofaghis, mainsail trimmer: "What is striking in these great races is that the regattas are even tighter than the Grand Prix. From beginning to end, we fight for every metre, every place. Relative to the length of the course, we finish much closer to each other than at the finish of a Grand Prix round, which is surprising after more than 10 hours of non-stop racing." Nils Frei, coach: "It was super impressive to see the lake transformed with more than 50 knots of wind. Rare conditions, fortunately, by the way. There were boats in stress everywhere and many flares launched. "Ladycat led the race well and deserves the victory, but we are happy to have sailed well overall. The start and first section of the race were very good. Then the wind transitions bunched us up. It was complicated when the Bouveret approached, where it was very quiet and therefore more random. On the way back to Geneva, we negotiated the storm rather well, even though the jib did not come out unscathed. We moved back on the leader who was 50 minutes ahead of us at Bouveret, but that will not have been enough. Achieving the podium on a long race is always satisfying, even if we would prefer to win!" After this fourth stage of the D35 Trophy 2019, Alinghi still leads the Championship, ahead of Ylliam-Comptoir Immobilier and Zen Too. For the D35s, a summer break will now take place until the end of August, when they will return for three Grand Prix to end the season. In the meantime, the team is looking forward to seeing you from June 27th to 30th in Lagos (Portugal) for one of its major goals: the GC32 Series World Championship. Click here for all the results of the 81st Bol d'Or Mirabaud. To find out more  // #GoAlinghiGo  //  #D35Trophy  //  #BOM19 To find out more about how to follow the racing, the team composition and the circuit in general, find the event recap by clicking here. Photo credits © BOM2019 / Loris Von Siebenthal, Nicolas Jutzi, Anna Ricca, EP medias