Valiant 40 owners love their boats with
an almost religious fervor. That’s
not surprising, considering that the
Valiant 40 gives them a combination
of characteristics summed up in the
term it introduced: performance cruiser.
in 1973 by a youthful Bob Perry, the
Valiant offered something most cruising
boats just didn’t have then –
the ability to sail fast. The skeghung
rudder and modified fin keel give the
double ended hull a level of quickness
and maneuverability unheard of in cruising
boats of the time. This, combined with
comfortable cruising interior and an
exceptionally strong hull, made the
Valiant 40 a veritable sailing phenomenon.
built by Uniflite in Washington, Rich
Worstell (a Valiant dealer) took over
production when they went out of business.
With a commitment to never compromising
the boat’s renowned integrity,
Worstell built a loyalty among owners.
He went on to build larger and smaller
Valiants and today his Texas plant
is busy turning out Valiant 42s, a
Perry-designed evolution of the 40.
Valiant 40s were built before production
ended in 1992. Today there is a permanent
waiting list for used models. Would-be
owners can expect a long wait –
a survey showed that half are still
sailed by their original owners. The
outsized appeal of the Valiant 40
once earned it the label of “cult
boat”. Much of the boat’s
popularity derives from its remarkable
achievements under sail. It has been
the boat of choice for a number of
circumnavigators and has finished
at the top of fleets in some of the
world’s most challenging races,
including the Singlehanded Transatlantic
and the BOC Challenge. According to
Worstell, no Valiant 40 has suffered
a disabling failure.