Boat of the Year: Meet The Competition
Archambault is one of performance sailing’s most respected European raceboat builders. The French company has a solid reputation in its homeland, and for good reason.
As with the Archambault-built M34, currently the official boat of the Tour de France à la Voile, the Archambault A27 is a versatile design that’s perfect for beer-can and inshore handicap racing. The hull and deck are polyester infusion-molded, and on the single-rudder base boat, the cast iron bulb keel (5'5") is fixed. A pivoting-fin keel, with hydraulic rams, and a dual-rudder setup is an option for owners with shallow-water racecourses. With an LOA of 27 feet and max beam of 9'9", and an upwind sail plan that combines to 457 square feet, the boat should be plenty powered up in the light stuff. To keep the price in line with its entry-level target market, the rig, boom, and bowsprit are anodized aluminum. There are a variety of appendage choices, and all sorts of interior options, too. At 4,790 pounds (roughly 1,000 pounds more than a Melges 32), it should be easy to trailer. Base boat is $115,000.
The diversity of our 2014 Boat of the Year lineup is impressive: from a deluxe all-carbon cruising cat to a clever inflatable sailing dinghy. It’s impossible to say which of these 14 designs will emerge as our Overall Boat of the Year, but veteran Boat of the Year judges Chuck Allen and Greg Stewart, and returning judge Tom Rich, will have their work cut out for them. Our week of testing commences Oct. 14, so check in daily for highlights on our website and on our Facebook page.