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Jeanneau Sunfast 3600.

Jeanneau's Sunfast 3200 is a prolific regatta yacht in Europe and a popular double-handed race boat, so the launching of the larger 3600 model has been much anticipated. In Australia, NSW dealer Performance Boating has successfully campaigned the original SunFast --which incidentally recently just won the Melbourne to Launceston Race--and they are anticipating the new model will further popularise Jeanneau's racing models in our waters. "The 3600 has been designed to be more competitive in crewed IRC events as well as remaining a good short-handed racer," Lee Condell from Performance Boating told me.

Affordable one-design racing for two crew has been popular in Europe for decades--as seen by growing fleets of Class40 and the Sunfast 3200--so this new design also from Daniel Andrieu looks to carry on the same formula in a longer waterline. As before, the hull has twin rudders, lead-bulbed keel with a fairly high ballast ratio to hold plenty of sail aloft. An infused hull comes with similarly constructed decks and bulkheads to maximise the power-to-weight ratio, though with longer hard chines to aid tracking and minimise heel. Deck gear is from Harken, including Quattro winches--twin drum, two speed models--positioned on the coachroof for fast halyard hoists. The cockpit can be equipped with either twin tillers or twin wheels and the mainsheet track is just in front for easy control from the helms, with moulded footplates and bench space forward. A high aspect rig has swept back spreaders with a mechanical backstay and there's also a carbon option. Other options include short (IRC optimised) or long bowsprit for bigger asymmetric kites.

Below decks the layout is understandably Spartan for weight reduction featuring twin cabins aft with head forward alongside the sail locker. The keel-stepped mast anchors a folding table mid-saloon while the starboard navigation station has ample bulkhead space for the factory fitted B&G or NKE electronics favoured by short-handed boats. Opposite is a two-burner cooker and stainless sinks with 601 icebox. Good features include the inward facing seating either side of the companionway allowing comfortable watch keeping on both tacks. Aft is always the best place to sleep on a bouncy boat so the twin double cabins should do the job well and the saloon benches with pipe-cots fitted can be used when fully crewed. Another useful feature for ease of sail handling is the forward bathroom hatch and double doors.

The Sunfast 3600 features a balsa-cored GRP hull that carries volume throughout its length with minimised overhangs and relatively upright topsides to curry favour with IRC ratings (TCC 1.044), in a similar way to its near competitor the Elan 360. I've talked to both distributors about doing a match-up on Sydney Harbour so watch this space as both these boats are guaranteed to put the fun factor into your sailing.

MODEL             Jeanneau Sun Fast 3600
LOA                      11.25 m/36' 10"
LWL                          9.50 metres
BEAM                         3.55 metres
DRAFT                        2.13 metres
DISPLACEMENT                    4,700 kg
BALLAST                          2,000kg
ENGINE            Yanmar 21 HP saildrive
WATER                         100 litres
FUEL                           75 litres
SAIL AREA         Mainsail 36 [m.sup.2],
              Genoa (106%) 33 [m.sup.2],
                  Spinnaker 100[m.sup.2]
PRICE                        $291,416.00
                 (base boat minus sails)
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Title Annotation:CRUISER RACERS
Publication:Offshore Yachting
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Apr 1, 2014
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