A blue­wa­ter cruiser by a vendée race boat de­signer is bound to de­liver on per­for­mance, but does she have com­fort to match?

Yachting World - - Front Page -

If the elec­tric green hull and strik­ing looks of Nica don’t grab your at­ten­tion, then its on-pa­per de­scrip­tion cer­tainly will. This Finot-conq

FC3 53 is a car­bon-hulled, wa­ter-bal­lasted, swing keel off­shore cruis­ing yacht. Read that last sen­tence again. Th­ese are words you don’t of­ten see to­gether and this boat defini­tively smashes the com­mon per­cep­tion of what a blue­wa­ter cruis­ing boat should be.

Nica is the third FC3 53 to be launched and its own­ers are about to em­bark on a world cruise. On de­liv­ery to the Ca­naries Nica clocked a top speed of 24 knots and look­ing at the mus­cly lines, 5m beam and pow­er­ful rig it’s easy to un­der­stand why she’s chal­leng­ing the norms.

But far from be­ing an un­tamed beast, the FC3 53 has been care­fully de­signed for stress-free dou­ble-handed sail­ing. There is no need to pay a penalty for your speed – the per­for­mance is matched by com­fort, style and lux­u­ri­ous fea­tures.

Finot-conq has long been known for blend­ing off­shore rac­ing hulls with cruis­ing in­te­ri­ors through the range of boats it de­signs for Pogo Struc­tures. The FC3 53 takes this con­cept to a dif­fer­ent level. Though some may frown at the suit­abil­ity of such a per­for­mance-ori­en­tated de­sign for a proper live­aboard ex­pe­ri­ence, there is noth­ing gung-ho about Nica. This is the cul­mi­na­tion of an owner’s in­formed and rig­or­ous spec­i­fi­ca­tion, the car­bon build­ing ex­per­tise of a Ger­man yard renowned for state-of-the-art race­boats and some very clever and beau­ti­ful de­sign.

The own­ers of Nica are a cou­ple who have pre­vi­ously owned and raced light dis­place­ment rac­ing yachts.

The hus­band of the team is very ex­pe­ri­enced,

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