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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
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The Contessa 35 is a Doug Peterson design of the late'70s IOR era, not too different from the breakthrough Ganbare 35 at the time.
As a Contessa I'd expect the build quality to be a cut above the other generic builders of that time, like Chaser and US yachts. These boats are not ideal passagemakers but offer lively performance despite some probable quirky behavior downwind in a breeze. That said, they can offer good value for the money. If it's the one in Stanford CT it looks pretty nice and well kept.
Certainly she'll be a good performer esp upwind, but a much different vessel than more recent designs that were not trying to cheat a specific design rule. Sometimes (often) this process produced boats that "rated" well but did not necessarily have blind speed, and occasionally produced boats with real bad habits. Some of these models show their Racer/Cruiser bent (as opposed to Cruiser/Racer) with pipe berths and sail stowage over accomodation.
1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"
".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)