|Grand Soleil 48|
It doesn't make sense does it? Well, about the same sense as buying or being interested in a cruiser racer without knowing the ballast or having a good look at the the underbody.
This talk would not seem odd if you knew that recently two Italian brands, Italia Yachts and Grand Soleil, presented to the press two new cruiser racers without revealing the ballast or showing the underbody.
And it was not by accident because I asked them about the ballast and I did not get any answer. Of course they sent a lot of talk regarding what they wanted sailing magazines to say about the boats and sail magazines just published that. Well I am not a sail magazine LOL and I refuse to post about things I don't have enough information.
So, what can I tell you about the new Grand Soleil 48 and the new Italia 11.98? Very little except that they look well, the IT 11.98 on an updated line of ORC development style the GS more in a conservative IRC/ORC line of development, very similar to past models of both brands.
That the Italia 11.98 belongs to the more sportive line of Italia yachts and the same happens with Grand Soleil. Both boats will have two versions, one with better performance than the other.
On the IT 11.98 the version developed for ORC racing will have a tiller and a bigger cockpit working area, with less seating space, the one more pointed for a dual use will have a two wheel system and a bigger seat, but I am sure that if one prefers a tiller on the more dual version that would not be a problem.
The Grand Soleil 48 on its faster version (one ton less) is not pointed as much to racing as the IT 11.98 and even if the more expensive version is called "Race", it is just a better boat than the cheaper version. The"Race" has a more technological built and it is pointed to those who can afford it.
Sure the "race" version will have a bigger racing potential but while on the IT 11.98 we are talking about top racing on a very naked boat on the GS we are talking about "gentleman" racing in a luxury boat with a very good interior.
On the GS "cruising" version the winch set-up is more appropriate to short crew sailing but I am sure that could be interchangeable between the two versions. The IT 11.98 version more adapted to cruising is presented with a fixed bowsprit with an anchor stand while the ORC optimized version has none.
Of course, both boats will have a long list of options including a lot of carbon options: spars, wheels and rudder included. Both are relatively light weight boats, the 11.98 weighting 6.2t, the GS 40 10.5 or 11.5t. The IT has a 28.0 SA/D, the GS 27.5 SA/D. Both will be very fast performance cruising boats, the IT 11.98 aims to be a top ORC racing boat, the GS aims to be more of a dual boat with good performance on the race course.
If you are so pissed as me with this new trend of presenting boats without disclosing some of the things that matter more, namely the underbody and the ballast, please post about that on the comments and I will be happy to send them to the brands in question: maybe that will help to change that.