Beneteau First 210/211


Beneteau First 210 Newsletter

Club / Association: First 210 Club
Issue / Publication Date: Issue #1, February, 1999
Author: Terry F. Ellis

The purpose of this newsletter is to help owners of the Beneteau First 21.0, First 21.0 Classic and First 211 Spirit exchange information about their boats.

In 1993, the First 21.0 was voted "Boat of the Year" in its class at "North American Sail Expo". US production of the 210 was discontinued in 1996. At that time, approximately 120 hulls had been sold in the US. Approximately 60% were the "First 210" model with blue hull, swing keel and double rudders. The rest were white color hull, bulb keel, single rudder "Classic" models. The blue hull "First 21.0" came with genoa furler, stern pulpit, pop up hatch, racing hardware, back stay adjuster, lights and stove. Both models were trailerable with optional mast raising system. Spinnaker, spinnaker rigging and pole were options as well.

In Europe, this Groupe Finot design was called the First 210 Spirit. W orld wide, as many as 450 First 210s may be under sail today (see "210 Club" below). In 1998, Beneteau re-introduced the 210 as the "First 211 Spirit". It features the 210 swing keel and hull, updated with an anchor well, modified cockpit hatches, plusher cabin and retractable rudders. A "First Club Pack" for cruising is also offered.

In the U.S., First 210s seem to be "clustered" in the Northeast (Boston), Mid-Atlantic (Chesapeake and inland lakes), Mid-West (Great Lakes and Ohio Valley lakes), Southwest (Texas coast and inland lakes) and Southeast (Florida/Georgia/Carolina coasts and inland lakes). I do not know the whereabouts of owners' boats in Europe and elsewhere in the World.

Beneteau's "Spring 95-No. 5" edition of rendez-vous said:

"The idea of forming a club has been germinating for quite some time amongst First 210 owners. Somewhere to exchange information, share experiences and a few salty adventures. Now with more than 450 on the water, the principle of the club has become even more important. 10, 20, 30 boats can get together at various locations ?.. and organise their own regattas, rallies and various activities ashore and on the water. The statutes of the Beneteau 210 Club are now officially registered and anyone willing to help define the '95 season's calendar (see the Notebook) is welcome. For further details contact: President of the Beneteau 210 Club; Philippe Poirault; 83 rue Saint-Ausone; 16000 ANGOULEME; Tel: 45 91 67 42"

Beneteau Owners Web Site. 210 owners can find and contribute information at This is a non-commercial internet site for Beneteau boat owners which contains information about the First 21.0, 21 Classic and 211 Spirit as well as on other Beneteau models. Articles on rigging and other topics for any model are also provided at this site. You can also share your experience with Beneteau owners at; a mailing list linked to Beneteau USA at

Newsletter For 210/211 Owners. Future newsletters would report activities like this:

* Tony races his First 210 in Bahrain (Arabian Gulf)! He reports good results in racer/cruiser handicap fleets with a new set of racing sails.

* Terry used Polar Charts from Groupe Finot to make his 210 go faster, winning his club's Fall Championship and taking a 1st and 3rd place at weekend regattas.

* Ron sails his 210 almost every week on a beautiful lake in Georgia. His wife and guests like the 210's stability, handling and speed. Ron's new spinnaker takes him along faster than ever!

*Terry cruised the Tennessee River. In 1997, he sailed his 210 Classic some 250 miles from Scottsboro to Decatur, Alabama, trailing it there and back from his homeport in Atlanta.

* Mike purchased a new First 211 Spirit in the UK. He is lucky. Word is that production of First 211 Spirits is sold out for 1999!

Please write if you would like to continue this letter. Send articles on racing, cruising, day-sailing, rigging, maintenance; skipper tips or whatever you like. If there is sufficient response, I will post subsequent newsletters here at

Terry Ellis
Hull #58
Lake Lanier
Atlanta, Georgia