It’s been a while since Hinckley Yachts has launched a sailboat, but when the new Bermuda 50 — the first of two on order, so far — rolls out of the company’s Trenton, Maine, production yard this spring, it should make quite a splash.
The model name harkens back to Hinckley’s sailing heritage and the venerable Bermuda 40, which made its debut in 1959. Designed by Bill Tripp, the B-40 still turns heads in harbors around the world today. Early on, Hinckley described the boat as a “great gentleman’s ocean racer.”
Its modern-day sibling, designed by Tripp Design and Bill Tripp III, could be described as the same, though I’d bet it will be a whole lot quicker around the buoys or over the long haul, say from Newport to Bermuda, than the yawl-rigged B-40.
The B-50 is thoroughly modern in looks, equipment and build. The foam-cored, carbon and Kevlar hull is infused with vinylester resin, as is the carbon deck. The carbon rig will carry an easy-to-handle sail plan, making the boat a couple’s cruiser or a very seaworthy racer for a captain and full crew.
A cherry interior is standard, but hull number one will be fitted out with maple. Accommodations include a master’s suite forward and two aft cabins.
As of this week, the hull and deck are complete, and the deck has been dry-fit. Interior modules are in place and the company expects the deck will be remounted permanently in another couple of weeks.
Renderings reveal a boat with a plumb bow, a sleek low-profile house, roomy cockpit with twin wheels and a graceful overhung stern. Below the waterline, a hydraulic lifting keel can reduce draft from 11 feet, 6 inches, to 6 feet, 6 inches, making the B 50 suitable for shallower bays and cruising grounds.
Wherever the B-50’s new owners decide to take her, though, I’m betting the captain and crew will enjoy the ride.