The Motor Boat Awards 2019 is a prestigious prize awarded by experts and boat testers on the basis of innovative features and technical and design criteria. At the award ceremony held at the Corinthia Hotel London, 11 boats and boatbuilders and yacht service providers were exclusively judged on their layout, design, capacity, and performance. Zeelander Z44, Fairline Targa 43 Open, Sunseeker Predator 50, Hardy 65, Princess 55 yacht, and Ferretti are among this year’s winners.
Ferretti Yachts 780 triumphed in the “Custom Yachts” category following thorough performance tests and sea trials carried out over the last 12 months.
Best Superboats – Winner: Zeelander Z44 yacht
Only 44ft (16.8m) in length but designed and crafted with the care and attention to detail of a multi-million pound superyacht. The closer you look the more enraptured you become by its quality, craftsmanship and unwavering commitment to beauty no matter the cost. It deserves an award for its devotion to curvature alone.
Best Sportscruiser up to 45ft – Winner: Fairline Targa 43 Open boat
“It’s one thing to build a large, expensive sportscruiser that looks and feels the part but it’s far harder to achieve in the under-45ft sector where competition is rife and the conflicting demands of spacious accommodation and rakish looks are trickier to balance.”
Best Sportscruiser boat over 45ft – Winner: Sunseeker Predator 50
The market may demand a bigger, more voluminous 50ft (15m) sportscruiser than Sunseekers of old but the Predator 50 meets those requirements in the inimitable Sunseeker way. With those dramatic slashes in the topsides and vast quantities of glazing in the superstructure sides and roof it demands attention.
Best Wheelhouse & Cockpit Cruisers – Winner: Botnia Targa 27.2
The 27.2 is a sweetspot in the sweetest of ranges. It’s compact enough to be manageable single-handed and not too expensive to berth but big enough to tackle conditions that would send far larger craft back down their own wake trail, tails between legs.
Best Passagemakers – Winner: Hardy 65 yacht
“We tested the 65 in undoubtedly the worst conditions of any test performed last year. Freezing temperatures and snow on the decks made worse by a howling Force 7; the ideal cocktail for a sea trial on a true passagemaker,” said the judges of the Motor Boat Awards 2019.
The Hardy plugged through it as if it were a Sunday afternoon jaunt on Lake Windermere. We moved about the saloon, brewed coffee and ate lunch while the conditions outside went from bad to worse.
Best Flybridges up to 60ft – Winner: Princess 55 yacht
“With the launch of the R35 at one end of the Princess range and the radical X95 at the other, it’s easy to forget the bread and butter of its mid-size flybridge range. The 55 is a sharp jab in the chest and a reminder that the Plymouth shipyard is expert at creating flybridge cruisers of this size.”
Best Flybridges over 60ft – Winner: Galeon 640 Fly
“The experience of British designer Tony Castro and the exuberance of Galeon’s youthful management team results in a boat with a litany of brilliant features that are as playful as they are effective.”
Best Custom Yachts – Winner: Ferretti 780 yacht
“Ferretti Yachts 780 was rewarded owing to its all-around excellence, evident from the architecture of the engine room to the flybridge,” stated the members of the panel while commenting on the victory. “Ferretti Yachts always offers extraordinary interior layouts and exemplary solutions from the engineering and quality of construction viewpoints, characteristics that are always highly appreciated by yacht owners.”
Customer Service Award – Winner: TBS Boats Penton Hook
Although the judging panel decides the winner in every category, for the service award, it bases its ultimate decision on the quality and quantity of the nominations it receives from members of the public. The competition was as stiff as ever but there was one company that shone through.
Best Sportsboats and RIBs – Winner: Jeanneau Cap Camarat 9.0
“The Cap Camarat range has always been one of practical, value-conscious boating. Not ostentatious but solid and dependable, a natural step into the world of boating and an ideal tool for a family to enjoy themselves on the water,” explained the judges.
Fabio Buzzi isn’t just the most successful powerboat racer of our era (or possibly ever), he’s also a brilliant designer, engineer, boatbuilder, and innovator.
“He has won almost every major powerboat race on the planet from marathon events like the Round Britain Race to the Class 1 Offshore World Championship and the terrifying Pavia to Venice river race, all in vastly different boats that he’s designed and built in his own factory. To put that in perspective it’s like Lewis Hamilton winning the F1 title, the WorldRally Championship and the Le Mans 24 hour race, in cars that he’s personally created,” said mby.com.