Quick Look: J/97

Steve Callahan reviews this clean cut racer/cruiser for the 2010 Cruising World Sailboat show in our January 2010 issue

J/Boats

A cruiser-racer from J/Boats Inc. can easily be another company's racer/cruiser. With a string of regatta victories in Europe already, the J/97 is bound to be raced as much as cruised by most folks on this side of the Atlantic.
Designed as an updated version of the successful J/30, the J/97 maintains superb acceleration, speed, and balance on the helm-traits that all of J/Boats' offerings have become known for.

The interior plots a new course, with galley and head flanking the companionway to ease access for the on watch. A double stateroom aft balances the open cabin forward with good settee-sea berths surrounding the table and V-berth forward. The workable layout complements but doesn't displace the focus on performance, though.
Outboard chainplates allow for a lighter mast. Highly responsive tiller steering, a mainsheet with coarse- and fine-tuning lines, a blade jib, and a typical J/Boat bowsprit supporting an asymmetric spinnaker ensure that this boat is both quick and easy to sail.

Specs

LOA 31' 6"
LWL 26' 7"
Beam 11' 0"
Draft 6' 4"
Sail Area 484 sq. ft.
Displacement 8,600 lb.
Water 26 gal.
Fuel 13 gal.
Engine 18-hp. Volvo
Designer Alan Johnstone
Price $190,000
J/Boats Inc.
(401) 846-8410
www.jboats.com