by Bill Springer

Open 5.70

by Bill Springer, Posted May 11, 2007
With its flat, plane-friendly Groupe Finot hull shape, dual rudders, square-headed full-batten main, and lifting, narrow-chord bulb keel, the Open 5.7 is obviously designed for the high-end of the performance spectrum. It’s only 20 feet long, displaces merely 1,020 pounds (330 pounds are in the keel), and boasts a working sail area of 280 square feet. Off the wind the 5.7 carries a

Alerion Express 38

by Bill Springer, Posted January 29, 2007
It could be said that Garry Hoyt’s Alerion Express 28 was ahead of the “big daysailer” trend when it was launched in the early 1990s. I took his latest entry in this growing genre—the Alerion Express 38—for a test sail in light air off Newport, Rhode Island.Under SailThe boat is designed to excel in light air, and my test sail proved it was up to the task.

    Hoyt H-10

    by Bill Springer, Posted September 21, 2006
    You’ll find Opti-mists and 420s on many yacht-club docks, but hasn’t the time come for a more modern small-boat design? Designer Garry Hoyt thinks so. His new H-10 is designed to be a stable, fast, and fun dinghy that will fill the gap between the Opti and bigger boats like the Laser and 420. To keep the boat light and easy for a kid to handle alone, the 10-foot-long hull is

    Morris M42

    by Bill Springer, Posted September 21, 2006
    With the launch of the 42-foot M42, it appears Morris Yachts is hoping to corner the market on the “big luxury daysailer” category. And if the success of the 36-foot M36 is any indication, Morris may be on to something. Like the 36, the 42 has easy sailhanding features, a self-tacking jib, and a painted carbon-fiber rig. It also has an elegantly simple, open accommodations

    Freydis Open 50

    by Bill Springer, Posted September 6, 2006
    The French are all about building and sailing fast multihulls, so when advance billing of the new Freydis Open 50 from Tournier Marine arrived at SAIL introducing a new ocean-racing catamaran for “professionals, semi-professionals, and even amateurs,” I could almost hear French builder Philippe Tournier’s accent as I read. This is not the first multihull designed to be gloves-off fast, but its

    Dehler 44

    by Bill Springer, Posted September 6, 2006
    The new Dehler 44 is one of the first two of five new Simonis Voogd–designed Dehlers on the drawing board to be launched between 2006 and 2009. It’s designed to be a performance cruiser with the focus on performance. Production got under way this summer only after extensive computer modeling was used to determine the optimum shape of the hull and appendages. It appears that the designers gave the

    Hunter 49

    by Bill Springer, Posted September 5, 2006
    A 49-foot cruiser with lots of bells and whistlesBy Bill SpringerHead designer Glenn Henderson has redesigned the entire Hunter line since he arrived in 1998, and now, starting with the new Hunter 49, he’s in the process of refining his redesigns. I jumped aboard hull #1 with Hunter’s chief tester, Steve Pettingill, on a 180-mile passage from St. Augustine,

    Beneteau 523

    by Bill Springer, Posted August 23, 2006
    Groupe Beneteau is the largest sailboat manufacturer in the world. It comprises four separate companies—Beneteau, Jeanneau, Lagoon, and CNB—that operate independently but share economies of scale. At first glance, Beneteau and Jeanneau may appear to be competing for the same buyers, but in reality each line is designed to fill wide (and separate) swaths in the marketplace. Jeanneau has had great

    Esse 850

    by Bill Springer, Posted August 22, 2006
    The idea behind the new 28-foot Esse 850 is what many sportboat builders strive for: Build a fast, easy-to-handle, trailerable, one-design racer/daysailer that can be sailed shorthanded. And make sure it’s drop-dead gorgeous.After a successful launch in Europe, where the Umberto Felci design was named one of the European Yachts of the Year, it appears the 850 turns the

    J/92

    by Bill Springer, Posted August 22, 2006
    Ever since Rod Johnstone built Ragtime, which ended up being the J/24 prototype in 1974, J Boats has produced boats that are fun to race as well as comfortable and manageable enough for family cruising. The new 30-foot J/92s fits that design brief perfectly. The J/92 has been very successful on racecourses in Europe and the U.S., and the J/92s is intended to be a more stable,
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