Beneteau has launched its latest sailing yacht, the First 36, which is already displaying impressive sailing capabilities and features. Designed by sailors for sailors, the First 36 has a team of some of the most experienced elites in the industry behind it. These include naval architect Samuel Manuard, Pure Design & Engineering, Lorenzo Argento, and Gigodesign. This design delivers the perfect balance between an easily planing hull and upwind performance.
The Beneteau First 36, is optimised for short-handed sailing, making her perfect for the increasingly popular short-handed adventure distance races. Her very high sail displacement and co-efficient and balanced nautical design make her a top performer as a club racer, a safe and fun family cruiser, or simply a thrilling daysailer.
The positioning of the yacht’s six winches, steering wheels, and other deck gear was thoroughly tested on several mock-ups and a full-scale testbed sailboat in order to enable optimal sailing. Details like an offshore hatch on the foredeck and removable cockpit benches show the priority of sailing functionality over style throughout the entire design process.
A standard aluminium rig and cast-iron keel were chosen to keep the boat accessible. Perfecting the shape and design of these are two key factors to a great sailing experience. A draft of 2.25 m was chosen as a compromise between performance and ease of use.
In the racing layout, the wide and modern cockpit allows for different helm and trim positions, either for short-handed or fully-crewed sailing. In this setup, the table and bench extensions are removed, opening up the working area in the cockpit.
A higher than average steering wheel position leaves enough room for the helmsman to move forward towards the mainsail winch when sailing shorthanded. The cockpit winches’ positioning allows one or two crew members to sail with legs in and work the mainsail or primary winches in full crew mode. It also allows cross-sheeting of all sheets to the windward side.
As a family cruising day sailing yacht, the First 36’s cockpit benches with cushions increase the seating area and additional space for storage and rope organisation. The cockpit table is big enough to seat a crew of six. Additionally, the ultralight bathing platform is able to give sailors easy access to the water without affecting the boat’s performance.
The wide hull of the Beneteau First 36,offers a spacious interior comparable to much larger predecessors. The new First 36 has about the same living volume as the legendary First 40.7. Simple, comfortable and multi-purpose, the First 36 interior was developed around a 3-cabin cruising functionality. Its most notable feature is the large central fridge (with a removable cutting board), making this sailboat’s galley the largest of her class.
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