Crew: 2 man crew.
Dimensions: 4.5 meters long, 3.05 meters wide and ±62kg.
Sail Area: 17.2 square meters, Spinnaker is 29.2 square meters
Class: Restricted (hull shape remains the same from year to year)
Characteristics: The B14 is a world-wide club racer with outstanding qualities.
Difficulty Level: Experienced, easy to sail but is technically challenging to race well
The B14 was designed in 1986 by 18ft skiff champion Julian Bethwaite. The blend of skiff ideas, such as hiking racks, retracting spinnaker pole, asymmetric spinnaker, flexible topmast and a dish-like cockpit make the B14 an attractive boat.
The boat is built for racing and possesses a power to weight ratio technically far superior than any other boats in this category. The B14 commands great acceleration and stability in high winds. The clean features, light weight loads of the B14 puts sailing expertise at the forefront and leaves 'brute' force for the heavier boats. Due to the methods applied in the construction of the boat, it is highly resilient to high performance racing, and hence has a low maintenance cost.
Classes are established around the world where the B14 currently provides close racing where women represent 10% of the class. Because of the light loads and the emphasis on technique rather than power, women excel in this class. Since the B14 uses hiking racks, the differential in righting moment over weight, which does effect performance, is significantly reduced between short and tall people as compared to trapezing. As was discovered during the prototyping of the B14, and now globally accepted in this type of boat, crew weight (within a very broad range) is significantly less of a factor than with other heavier boats. Again, because the boat is twin hiking, the usual requirement of 'larger person on the wire, smaller person on the helm' does not apply.