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Best Boats 2015: C&C 30

We don’t often have ties in our Best Boats competition, but with two very different and equally exciting boats in the 30ft-and-under performance category, we just couldn’t go with a single winner.

We don’t often have ties in our Best Boats competition, but with two very different and equally exciting boats in the 30ft-and-under performance category, we just couldn’t go with a single winner. 

The first of the two is the C&C 30. If you’ve been racing sailboats for a while, you’re undoubtedly familiar with C&C Yachts, a racer-cruiser manufacturer that produced plenty of winning boats in the 1970s and 1980s. Now the company is back at the forefront of racing design with this Mark Mills-conceived 30-footer, which C&C hopes to develop into a high-performance, offshore-capable one-design class that’s both easy to sail and affordable compared to other grand prix boats.

The C&C 30 is loaded with go-fast goodies, including a Hall Spars fixed (but removable) centerline sprit pole, a double-spreader carbon-fiber rig (also from Hall), an open transom, an offset companionway, a flush deck, plumb bow, halyard locks (main and jib) and an expansive cockpit. If you’re starting to envision a scaled-down TP52, you’re on the right track, as the C&C 30’s design DNA draws much inspiration from that much bigger and far more expensive class of racers.

The tiller-driven boat is built from foam-cored E-glass infused with vinylester. Carbon fiber is used in the retractable keel strut and rudder post and to reinforce the boat’s structural grid. The result is a strong, light and stiff vessel that’s quick to leap onto a plane and doesn’t need a crew packed with pro talent. As with many such current-generation designs, the C&C 30 employs a central control pod for critical running-rigging controls and a deep, T-shaped keel with bulb. It also has a flush-mounted traveler, twin topmast running backstays, adjustable headsail leads that provide athwartship and vertical trim, a square-top mainsail, an overlapping headsail and a massive A-sail.

The C&C 30 is being built in Bristol, Rhode Island, by an experienced team at a facility that also builds J/22s and J/24s, thus helping to ensure the kind of exacting standards that define a successful one-design class. Gidyap! c-cyachts.com

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