Sailing Vessel FROG'S LEAP

This brand has been a well kept secret in the USA. It has suffered from not being marketed in high production. Sure, people know french boats,clearly there are two brands, J and B, B bought J, but B also bought W and then spun it off in 2010. Madame Beneteau was a dear friend of Henri Wauquiez and wanted to save the yard.

These, like the hood 38, are a bit of a cult if you might say. The owners, like myself, get involved. There is a very active group on Yahoo.com, and Wauquiez don't linger on sale. IFrog's Leap was a lucky find. It was 2009, and no one was buying anything after the crash.

Wauquiez still remains a high quality brand today, long after Henri Wauquiez died, but the value is there due to the lack of brand recognition. Ask any local sailor and they will give you a blank stare. The opposite is true with offshore voyagers who recognize this as a fast passagemaker.

Wauquiez was founded in 1965,the founder had the philosophy that boats have a Soul, which they have for 50 years. These are semiproduction boats, not built by the thousands each year. Mine is hull 47, about nine or ten years into the production of the Centurion 47 design which preceded the 49. That is about five boats a year for this model.

I am the so typical Wauquiez owner. I love the boat for its character and looks, I love that it performs reasonably well for a cruising boat(PHRF rating of 72), I want a boat that is secure on the ocean and in a storm, and finally, I could not afford a Swan. So, I settled for the next best thing. I settled for teak veneer instead of solid wood. The rest is pretty much at par.They say when you sail one of these, the boat does not creak. I have not yet tried in 20 foot seas, but I did 10 to 12.

See http://www.wauquiez.com/ for the current company's front page, and an interesting history of the Wauquiez yard can be found on the non profit foundation in memory of the namesake of the brand. See the link: http://www.wauquiezforever.com/

The design is by Ed Dubois, a brilliant designer who is remarkably humble despite his notoriety and success in the top end MegaYacht market. Ed still looks at his Centurion design with a parent's eye towards successful children, and still appears to love engineering and design.