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Sunday, February 17, 2013

All Seasons Sports Cruiser by Dag Pike

All Seasons Sports Cruiser
All Seasons Sports Cruiser by Dag Pike, Courtesy: Yachting 2/13
It was great to see a departure from the usual rainbows-and-puppy dogs reviews that one usually finds in industry magazines.  Caught in between pleasing the manufacturers and being an honest journalist, writers tend to, in my opinion, sometimes only present the great features of a boat and gloss over the not so great ones.

However, in February's Yachting magazine, author Dag Pike in his review of the new Fairline Targa 62 GT spent a full two paragraphs describing a lackluster helm layout to this $1.7 Million dollar boat.

I've spent time on this and other Fairline yachts, and he is absolutely right that "the helm area could have been laid out more efficiently." That's actually an understatement in my opinion.  For $1.7 Million dollars, I should be able to stand behind the helm without having a "windscreen frame ostruct[ing] my view."  How about the dual nav screens which Dag describes as in front of the guest seat while "it would be optimal to have them directly in front of the helmsman."  Or the sight lines, which were "reasonably good, which is important, since this is the only helm station."  YOU THINK??

I can't be the only person who read this article and thought, "you know, for that much money, it would be nice to have a boat that I could ACTUALLY DRIVE."

This isn't the only brand of luxury yacht I've examined that had a less than optimal helm arrangement.  Which makes me wonder, because if the people designing the boat couldn't get the most important thing right, what else might be awry?  Any real boater will tell you how annoying one simple, misplaced helm feature can be while trying to navigate through a narrow channel, in traffic, or - heaven forbid - in a rough seaway.  Call me crazy, but I just have to shake my head in misunderstanding at these luxury items that miss the mark in the most obvious places.

I welcome some feedback from anyone in the industry, or at Fairline, who can better explain why a boater spending that much money should have to deal with a subpar helm arrangement.  Until that time, Dag Pike and the Yachting staff, keep up the good honest work of telling us the truth about these and other yachts as they come along! Bravo!
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