Quentin Stewart, who, after sailing in the 2013 Rolex Sydney Hobart decided that he wanted a fast boat and rather than buying a TP52 or a Cookson 50 and adding modifications, Stewart was convinced that building a project from scratch would ensure that it performed exactly as designed without compromise.
And just like that, Stewart commissioned the Infiniti 46R Maverick, which was launched in 2016 and the first yacht of its size to combine a canting keel with DSS foils. Stewart met with Hugh Welbourn, Dynamic Stability System (DSS) creator and Gordon Kay from Infiniti Yachts to come up with a design to build the fastest 46-foot monohull the world has ever seen. The DSS system reducing heel angles and drag while enabling dynamic lift for a powerful performance.
Maverick's carbon fibre build and revolutionary design makes her a lighter, more balanced and faster boat to sail, with a relatively shorthanded crew of six. Essentially Maverick is trying to attain the performance benefits usually experienced by a much larger yacht across a broad spectrum of wind angles and conditions, challenging everyone on the start line at all of the great 600 mile races around the world.
"We set out looking for something different and Doyle absolutely fits into that – the team have been incredibly supportive of our project, helping us to foil sooner and faster and as best we can.
"Our change in performance has been immense which is purely down to the development and application of the Cableless and Structured Luff technology which allows us to sail the boat higher and faster and for us that is the gains we are constantly looking for. The sooner we can get onto the step and get it onto the foil, the faster we go, the further ahead of people we get, the easier the whole game becomes. For us, it’s the constant evolution of trying to get to a boat speed that allows us to foil as quickly as we can.
"Doyle has been in partnership with us since the launch, fitting the first set of sails and everything after that has been an attempt to maximise those gains in getting the boat speed up and the angle tighter. The Cableless MH0 (Masthead Cableless Code Zero), FR0 (Fractional Cableless Code Zero) and Jib Top, in particular, have allowed us to squeeze 20 degrees out of it and for us, that’s an enormous gain. The jibs give us a little less, with tighter angles to start with but even then the Structured Luff sails all give us 3 – 5 degrees more height and another half a knot in VMG. That is an immense gain for us". Quintin Stewart
Another part of Maverick's programme is to involve younger crew so that they are given a chance to develop their skills. Doyle Sails' Grand Prix experts, Stu Bannatyne and Justin Ferris, have worked closely with the team to build sails that work well with their unique boat design.
"I've really enjoyed working with Maverick, they operate with the same mentality as we [Doyle Sails] do, they're cutting edge and go against the grain," says Bannatyne.
"Part of the philosophy of the whole programme has been to work with people and suppliers who buy into our design and opportunity rather than people who want to come up with a plain vanilla answer," says Stewart. "We then bring on people like Stu Bannatyne and Justin Ferris [Doyle Sails] and Gordon Kay from Infiniti. They will help the younger guys to develop into the best sailors they can be."
Maverick now competes in offshore sailing events around the globe such recently competing in the 75th Edition of the Rolex Sydney Hobart, Dec 2019. Interestingly The most radically designed yacht in the fleet for last year's Sydney to Hobart race is not one of the multimillion-dollar 100-foot supermaxis but a prototype 46-foot flyer from the Channel Island of Guernsey that can make most 60-footers look slow.
"This boat is like a mini Volvo 70, so the bigger the seas and the stronger the winds, so long as they are coming from behind, the happier we will be," said Stewart.
Maverick finished 3rd in their division, behind two much larger yachts and with the size and calibre of the Sydney Hobart fleet a top 20 finish, with almost every boat before them longer, is admirable.
Before last year's Sydney to Hobart, the Maverick team proudly secured 1st place in the Newport to Bermuda Race.
"Team Maverick relied completely on Doyle for this year's NPBR. The forecast didn't allow for the use of our new Blast-reacher, but we were extremely impressed with the Cable-less Code Zero. This sail has so many modes and huge weight and load saving compared with our traditional cable sail. Stu Bannatyne worked tirelessly with the team to help customise sail design to various rating rules. Thank you, Doyle." – Sean McCarter, Team Maverick.