Jumping in with one other take: you mentioned that you are thinking in terms of cruising the Caribbean
. If so then light air performance is irrelevant. Take it from one who's been there for 12 years, its plenty windy down there! I've sailed my CSY
44 there all this time and have NEVER wished for any more sail than I have with main, yankee jib
and stays'l ... and I weigh in at 36,000 pounds with tanks
empty. If that is really your plan, don't be fooled into thinking that what you need to keep moving in your home waters is what you need elsewhere. If that was the case no one would own anything but a converted race
boat! Get yourself something roomy and comfortable - and something that will make you happy when you look out over a crowded anchorage and see YOUR boat standing out among the rafts of other look-alikes ,,, and something that has the guts to mash her way through marginal conditions safely and comfortably.
Oh, yes - did I also mention that my boat is for sale
? (Family health
reasons) Drop me a PM if you'd like to learn what it's really like down there ....