Born in CHERBOURG with a boatyard across the road, I had the luck of always going boating. My father started to build a 24' monohull when I was 5 year old and I always wanted to design boats since!
At that time, the first SHEARWATER were imported by friends from CHERBOURG who then promoted the EXOCET (the first successful French catamaran), the first PIVER trimaran built locally, the French Multihull Association created and the first catamaran races also run in CHERBOURG.
Back in 1970, a friend of mine was the French champion with his Tornado. The first sail on this beauty was so convincing that I soon had my father replacing his cruising monohull with an IROQUOIS, and I bought a TORNADO for myself!
I started designing yachts in 1976 and managed to sell a good proportion of multihulls. This was not easy, remember at that time cats and tris were not really accepted, to say the least.
In the 80s, the boom of open racing started so I thought with a few friends that it would be a good idea to build a D-Class cat as a scale model for an offshore racer. I learned everything on HARO, which had a nice career, holding the Brest Speed Week Record several years against the mighty 85 footers, then showing good results in the BOL D'OR with a taller rig. We were unofficially clocked at 32 knots on 500m. Not bad at that time with a 38 footer !
INOUI was my first catamaran with a deck cabin and the starting point for all my later work on fast cruising cats. We largely won our class in the 1984 Trophée des Multicoques averaging 18.57 knots for a 5 mile reach and stayed unbeaten in class ever since! INOUI finished very well in the 1988 C-Star and, still under the same ownership, have completed over 100,000 miles of family cruising! All my cruising designs are a long development of this original concept.
We refined this approach on our current catamaran range that we are busy to put into production all over the world.
Beside these production considerations, custom boats are a large part of our business. We are always delighted to take a break from our cruising catamarans to design a few racing boats.
Since 1976, Erik LEROUGE, an IFAN naval architect, has designed over 300 different sailing yachts built all over the world. His cruising designs have crossed many oceans with family crews while his racing designs gained trophies at the Multihull Grand Prix, lake racing or short-handed racing.
Erik LEROUGE has an impressive technical background and his design concepts have been validated by tank testing.
All new drawings and all updates of stock plans are done in CAD using Maxsurf for hulls, TopSolid for 3D modeling and AutoCAD for 2D building plans. They are metric, in English or French. Drawings are printed on an A0 jet plotter. Perspective drawings or brochures are printed on an A2 color jet plotter or stored on a CD-ROM.
Contracts and of drawings are based on the IFAN Naval Architect practice.
Main racing successes as skipper or crew on his designs
- Takes part in the SYDNEY HARBOUR 18 FOOT SKIFF 1978 Open World and French championships.
- Wins many club races, 1985 Shamrock cup and the 1986 Otis cup with RED MAGNUM, 36' ULDB.
- Wins the 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1987 Brest Speed weeks (Open French speed record), 6th at the 1986 Bol d’or (on 550 boats), 12th at the 1987 Bol d’or (1st French) with HARO, a 38' racing catamaran.
- Wins the 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1990 Trophee des Multicoques, the 1986 UNM cup and SAM, the 1986 and 1987 Challenge Multicoques Mag with INOUI, a 40' catamaran cruiser-racer.
- Wins the 1985 Double Cup with VILLE AUDRAIN, a 43' production catamaran.
- Wins the 1986 GP de Benodet, the 1988 and 1991 Trophee des Multicoques, the 1988 SAM, the 1988 Challenge Multicoques Mag and the 1998 Le Tour Dauvergne with various AZULI, 38' production catamarans.
- Wins the 1987 Grande M, the 1987 Challenge Multicoques Magazine and comes 2nd in the 1987 MICRO European championship with CATMAN MICRO, a 26' production catamaran.
-5th in the first leg of the 1987 Transat des Alizes with PAMPERO, a 43' production ULDB.
- Wins the 1989 GP de Cornouailles with NATHANAEL, a 31' production catamaran.
- Three best days at the 1990 Brest Speed week, wins the 1990 GP de Torquay and comes 7th at the 1990 F28 European Championship with BARON NOIR, a 28' racing catamaran.