Looks like I answered my own question with a simple question on Google
of how close can a boat sail to the wind
. Here is a responsible and seemingly accurate answer...forgive me my laziness before I exercised due diligence. But still tell me your experience on cats, performance monos, and tris.
"There's the question of how close you can
sail to the true wind, and then there's the question of how close you want
to sail to the true wind. The two are quite different! There's a fundamental reason why boats go upwind at near 45 degrees, and that's to maximize their velocity-made-good to windward.
A moderate performance boat like the AC class will point well above 45 degrees because while they can sail to a comparatively small apparent wind angle, they can't actually go fast and so must opt for a high angle.
A high performance craft will sail at comparable apparent wind angles, but will opt for a lower course. The extra speed will more than make up for the extra distance sailed. So you won't actually see these boats tacking through less than 90 degrees.
Theory says if the boat has very high performance, such that the speed can increase freely to the point that the boat sails
at the same apparent wind angle all the time, the optimum course to windward is 45 degrees plus half the apparent wind angle. Very few craft can come close to this ideal and must sail higher and slower. But you can see that 45 degrees is a fundamental number and not a coincidence."