SANTA CRUZ 53C • Known for their successful ultralight racers, Santa Cruz Yachts unveiled their first fully dedicated performance cruiser at the Oakland boat show. The Santa Cruz 53C has the same hull form as the racy 52 but features portholes and has been simplified for shorthanded sailing. Whereas the 52 was designed as a racer/cruiser and has done well on the racecourse, the 53C has no racing pretenses and was developed out of the feedback from those who took their 52s cruising. The deck layout is simplified with no number one jib track, all lines led to the cockpit, an optional self-tacking jib, an open cockpit with no traveler and sheets to trip over and a fiberglass, enclosed pilothouse. Conceptualized for couples doing long-distance cruising, the main can be reefed singlehandedly from the cockpit, and swept-back spreaders make the running backstays unnecessary in most conditions.
Below, the two pilot berths in the main saloon augment the two staterooms fore and aft, which both feature ample storage. Fast enough to get you out of harm’s way, the 53C offers all of the comforts of cruising as well as the ability to regularly tick off 200-mile days, letting you leave the anchorage last and still arrive ahead of the fleet.