Originally Posted by John Kennett
I've been thinking about sorting out some proper professional boat tests for a few years now. We could do it well, but it wouldn't be cheap and I haven't worked out how to make it pay its way. If anyone has any bright ideas feel free to pitch in!
Most of the UK boat builders and importers know Ribnet and have some interaction on threads raised from time to time. I also know in the past that its possible for 'trade related articles' to turn sour as members offer up their own opinions, and it quickly turns 'off topic'. That may be part of the reason we don't hear more from them?
One thing I'd avoid is pitching boats against boats, such as <5m boat tests, etc. Simply test the chosen boat itself based on its own merits, and not in a class which inevitably creates problems.
Like the idea of a panel (made up of members from a geographic area) that could test the boat and write a summary based on certain criteria, such as ease of launch, engine, looks, handling, equipment level, etc. You'll need a photographer, the boat of course, fuel for the day, insurance, lunch (members can bring their own...)
Graphics wise, these things could be branded to differentiate them from other articles. You could also upload Gopro videos that have had the 'Whisper' edit treatment. All good stuff.