by George Day
Blue Water Sailing
June 2008
The world’s leading sailboat builder introduces a new family cruiser that exudes modern style and performance
We spent the afternoon sailing the new Beneteau 43 on Florida’s Biscayne Bay. The sky was squally and the wind was piping between 15 and 20 knots in gusts but the bay was flat, and in the good breeze the 43 was in her element.
We put the new boat through her paces on all angles of sail and found that it handled easily and showed a pleasant turn of speed. Upwind, the 43 is quite close winded and will sail comfortably at 43 degrees and make 6.5 knots in 12 knots of true wind. This is with the standard 140-percent Dacron genoa and the in-mast roller furling mainsail.
Beam reaching the boat really comes into its own and will exceed 8 knots in 12 knots of breeze with little surges to 8.5 as the puffs hit us. Downwind, the boat settled into a nice groove at 160 degrees from the true wind and had the feel at the helm that it would track along at 7 or more knots in a straight line all day. READ REVIEW