I have sailed two friend's Tartan 34's. One has a functional board and one has the center board glassed in. One is a fine little sailboat that I would take anywhere and the other is a total dog.
Imagine a stormy night off a dangerous lee-shore and your engine fails the difference between survival and disaster is the boats ability to sail to windward off a lee shore...Which boat would you choose?
You must not have sailed them much because I can tell you the difference is minimal. Yes, you might point a little better, but not a life and death difference as you imply and you also have the trade off of added drag with the board down.
hunter Legend 37 Semper Paratus
Formerly - Tartan 34C Yawl