FIND ME A... SPORTY 30FT CRUISER
We find four of the most enjoyable budget-friendly boats under 30ft
Nichola and Erika met in their teens when they were dinghy sailors at their local Sussex yacht club. They raced together many times before buying a well-worn Hunter Sonata together so they could spend weekends on board too. Now they’re looking to cruise further afield, but don’t want to lose their competitive edge. With a budget of £80-£100,000, they’re looking for a performance cruising yacht around the 30ft mark, with a strong emphasis on the former. That said, when they set off for long weekends or their annual holidays they’d like to be able to sleep, cook, eat and live reasonably comfortably on board – preferably by adding portable lockers and other items of cruising gear that can be easily removed for racing on their return.
These days, if you’re looking for an exciting new performance yacht around the 30ft mark you should really take a look at some of the speed machines being produced in France – especially along its Atlantic coast. There are the ultra-sporty Pogo, Django, Mojito and Malango Mini-transat lookalikes, as well as the slightly more cruiseable RM, Jeanneau and Beneteau yachts.
Plus, for the sheer row-away factor, there’s the absolutely gorgeous Tofinou and Black Pepper high-performance classics. But which ones can you safely cruise offshore and live aboard for a few nights in relative comfort? We take a closer look...
Duncan Kent, yacht tester for 25 years, checks out the used boat market