I've been sailing my Tartan 37 c/b for over a dozen years now and have experienced some heavy gales (30 to 50 knots)with her and I will not use the board when it pipes up too much. First reason is that this boat sails very nicely without the board and is very stable. Second reason is that I don't want the board bouncing around with the wave action (there's no way of locking it down) and the third reason is that "if" something goes wrong with it, I don't want to mess with it when its blowing like stink. The downside of not using the board is in its ability not to point quite as high, I loose about 5 to 10 degrees depending on conditions.
I think that if a centerboarder is well designed, I wouldn't hesitate for it does open up a lot of water to you. Apart from older Tartans, there's Bristol, Older Morgans, Hinckleys, Little Harbors, Shannon and many more respected builders putting out centerboarders.
Hope this helps....just my two cents worth.