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Who's who or the French versus the Germans

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From the time Sun KingHanse Dufour, who sent his Marshals to the Rhine at the head of his army, France and Germany have been one of the perennial pastimes in Europe. From wrestling for Alsace/Lorraine to squabbling over Sedan. Fortunately, during the last half century the worldwide easing of manners has gained the upper hand, and therefore both countries are competing only in economy and a little in political influence. Well, common public enthusiastically argues, where Airbus is assembled with better quality - in Hamburg or in Toulouse, or compares fast trains TGV and ICE, more known under the moniker Sapsan.

At the end of May in Marmaris there was held Sail&fun Trophy which is a hilarious biannual event of absolutely amateur character with the exception of helmsmen where almost no one with sailing experience is present. This time, Phoeniex Yachting, the company that organizes this regatta, has put up two divisions - Hanse и Dufourand once again it was an opportunity to discuss «who is better than»: German or French? Both divisions started at the same time but each division had a handicap. This approach allows us to share some observations from the week of racing.
In general both yachts are good with modern and smart hull and deck designs and also quite good quality interiors. Both French and Germans are nowadays making very fast yachts. Perhaps the fastest among their cruising counterparts. But there are noticeable differences in brand strategies. Thus, the French have Performance lineup that is the yachts uniquely designed for regattas while the Hanse does not have a special racing lineup. In this case, the Germans manage to balance between good racing characteristics and the idea of a family comfortable cruiser (they themselves call this concept «a crossover» by analogy with the car construction).
And, as practice shows, they succeed! For races with inexperienced crew, controlling the sails right from the helmsman's seat becomes very important! What did the race prove? The Dufour Performance pair took the lead, showing that they were worth the extra money. Then came three Hanse. Dufour (Grand Large) also looked well and in a medium wind fought almost on equal terms with Hanse of the same size.
The yachts didn't manage to put their heads together in strong winds, while Hanse has a powerful weapon - auto jib, then another reef on main board that is surprisingly easy to tackle without leaving the helm. Well, in light winds the smallest of the Hanse - the 350 - shone. Light and fast, with an unbeatable handicap, she eventually won her division.
It would seem that some sort of conclusion needs to be drawn here. But why? Because this is just another observation at yet another amateur regatta. And every yachtsman knows for himself exactly which boat is better.



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