There’s a delicious guilty pleasure in jumping a boat so far out of the water that you get the props clear; that telltale fraction of a second as the engine revs suddenly flair, causing your adrenalin gland to do the same.

It’s the same frisson of excitement, that same sense of lawlessness, that you get from briefly slipping the back end of a powerful rear-wheel drive car out of line on an empty wet roundabout – just for  a moment, you’re Tom Cruise buzzing the tower in Top Gun.

But just like the car, it only really works if the boat is well  balanced, if it feels born to do it – there’s little pleasure to  be had opposite locking a camper van!

The mere fact  that we’re trying so hard to get the props out of the water on our sea trial of Jeanneau’s new Cap Camarat 9.0 models speaks volumes – it wasn’t always like this with the French builder.

A decade or so ago, if you’d visited Jeanneau’s boat show stand in search of a sporty 9m sportscruiser, you’d have been politely directed to the group’s Leader line either the Leader 8 or its earlier incarnation, the 805.

Great boats, capable, comfortable and spacious, they made excellent family cruisers, but no one ever attempted to get their props out, and with typically a single Volvo Penta diesel, they’d have been disappointed if they’d tried.

Today the market has changed, and so has the hardware. Twin outboards, each as powerful as its predecessor’s single diesel yet weighing less in total, offer performance that’s simply in a different league.

Available in two distinctly separate model lines, one is an open walkaround boat, the other more of a large cuddy cabin, but confusingly it’s the cabin version that’s called the WA and the walkaround boat that’s called the CC (it actually stands for Centre Console, apparently)

Read the full report in the July 2018 issue of MBY.

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