Gerry Douglas’s Catalina 355 is Domestic Boat of the Year
Rodger Martin’s Presto 30 Takes the Cruising Spirit Award
The Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology is pleased to announce that—continuing decades of success in design competitions by Westlawn students and alumni—Gerry Douglas, president and chief naval architect of Catalina Yachts and Rodger Martin, of Rodger Martin Design, both had designs selected for 2010 awards by Cruising World magazine.
The Catalina 355
Designed and produced under Douglas’s watchful eye, the Catalina 355, was recognized by Cruising World judges, in a category where all boats were designed to be comfortable and easy to sail. Judges said, “the interior layout works, and this is the kind of boat that people who love sailing will enjoy.”
The judges spent much time debating all the boats entered, but, when it came time to pick the one that stood above the rest, it was the Catalina 355. In 9- to 11-knots wind, boat speed was in the 5-knot range. The judges found the vessel’s handling forgiving and responsive, with predictable upwind tacking and a nice extra turn of speed off the wind using the cruising gennaker tacked to the removable bowsprit.
The integrity of the construction also impressed the judges, and they felt that Douglas did an excellent job of creating an interior space that seems bigger than found on most 35-footers, including a large galley with excellent storage and even a powered adjustable bunk in the main cabin forward, which tilts up to make it more comfortable to read in bed. Winning details included: Superior quality construction; innovative well-thought-out design details; good performance under sail; and, according to one judge, “a lot of boat for the buck.”
The Presto 30
Featured in the September 2010 issue of The Masthead, Rodger Martin’s Presto 30 was selected by the Cruising World judges for the 2010 Cruising Spirit Award.
The judges asked, “Is it fair to punish a good boat that defies categorization?" In the end, the answer was no, and the judges, at their own discretion, responded by giving the Presto 30 the Cruising Spirit Award for being a boat unlike any other that also has the potential to attract a whole new group of sailors to a different way of doing things.
With its cat-ketch rig, unstayed carbon masts and wishbone booms, the Presto 30 is quite distinctive. Add in extremely shoal draft, beachability, and easy trailering, and you have a cruising boat that encourages adventure, and at a reasonable budget. Not only were the judges impressed with how easy the split rig made wing-and-wing downwind sailing, but, according to one judge, they "felt the boat produced the visceral joy of sailing that embodies all the reasons we set off for a journey or a daysail.”
Winning details included:
- The centerboard and kick-up rudder that make the boat easy to launch from a trailer and extremely shoal-water friendly,
- Under sail, the boat was light, responsive and sneaky quick, and
- The interior isn’t fancy, but it does have all the cruising comfort you’d need to head out on any adventure.
Founded in 1930, the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology is the only nationally accredited distance-learning school of small-craft design in the United States. As the not-for-profit educational affiliate of the American Boat and Yacht Council, the mission of the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology is threefold: To provide our students with the skills and knowledge required to build a rewarding career in the profession of yacht and small-craft naval architecture; to support continued growth of the recreational and small-craft marine community through the development of well-trained, safety-oriented, boat designers developing better products for the benefit of the boating public; and to provide continuing education to marine-industry professionals.
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