The boat in question was not the 26X which is the powerboat/sailboat hybred, but the 26S which was designed solely as a trailerable auxillary sailboat. Unlike the 26x powersailor which has a lot of freeboard, large portlights and tremendous form stability and so would be expected to have a very quick motion, the 26S would be expected to be closer in hull form and motion to a normal 26 foot water-ballasted centerboarder.
There is a tendancy to slam MacGregor's build quality and it is not without some reason. Panel weights are light, there is almost no internal framing, and hardware and rigging sizes are small even by trailerable satndards. By the same token, MacGregor claims to not use chopped glass, they claim to limit coring to deck structure, they use simplified but sturdy enough rigging components like pin type shroud adjusters rather than turnbuckles.
On the other hand their advertising says scary things like, "Our bolted hull to deck joining system is strong, but compact, and adds little to the width of the boat. Many of our competitors use wide joining flanges, which contribute a lot to their beam, but add very little to strength or usable inside space." If you didn't know better you would think, Gee isn't that nice that MacGregors' hull to deck joint adds very little width to the boat, while ignoring that outward flange connections are weaker than inward flanged joints at the deck line and also the bigger problem with that statement is that the faying surface (the amount of flange area available for adhesive or sealant) is critical to the long term strength and durability of the joint. The Macgegors small faying surfaces would come into play in the high impacts of beating to the square chop as might be expected in a Gulf crossing.