Jeff, Your post is one of the most useful with a perspective and info I haven't read elsewhere, I've been 'researching' for more than 6 months now. Lots more to consider now. Thanks.
I don't care at all about racing anymore, doubt I'll be crossing any ocean but rather New England to Puerto Rico & BVIs sailing. I want vessel no larger than 32 as I'll be singlehanding mostly. I'm a bit confused about what you wrote about heavy displacement. Having been caught in many a nasty squall on the east end of Long Island and Block Island Sound, I'd love a boat that will right and quickly and kept thinking it meant mid to heavy displacement. I just passed on Cape Dory Intrepid ~ one reason being light displacement.
I would love a fractional rig with tiller. Occasionally, I see Cape Dory or Ericson that have both.