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September 21, 2007

Pro Sports 3200 SportFish

A sleek fishing cat the whole family will love.

Pro Sports, the Alabama boatbuilder with a considerable line of conventional hulls, plunged into the catamaran market by offering three 28-foot models in 2001. Based on initial reaction, the company subsequently extended the cat line by recently introducing the 3200 SportFish, its largest model yet. Designed for offshore work, the 3200 also accommodates boaters who aren't interested in fishing 24/7 for extended periods.

"The 3200 is perfect for the serious fisherman who wants to go out and stay out," says Pro Sports president Mike Robinson. "But it's also very family-oriented for extended cruises, especially when you add the optional weekender package."

The 3200 design represents a departure from other catamarans on the market. For instance, it has a rounded bow for a more traditional profile. The tunnel roof between hulls is cylindrically shaped to enhance water flow, while added chines four feet apart help minimize the typical catamaran bow spray, or sneeze. Extra-long motor-mounting brackets enhance stability and minimize cockpit noise while allowing the engines to tilt completely out of the water.

Pro Sports 3200 SportFishConstruction materials include isothalic gelcoat, vinylester resins, four layers of knitted fiberglass matting in the hull and multi-directional mat in the sides. There are four bulkheads in the sub-floor, and fiberglass-encapsulated wood in the stringers. The planing hulls are deep-vee with reverse chines.

We tested the 3200 in Miami. With a pair of 225-hp Honda four-stroke outboards, the boat topped 40.2 mph wide-open and cruised at 27.1 mph at 4000 rpm. The ride was smooth, as the planing hulls sliced through five-foot rollers in Government Cut, with only a slight wind-blown mist instead of the sneeze that is typical of many cats. If diesel power is your preference, the 3200 can be rigged with inboard/outboard options up to 315 horses. Standard fuel capacity is 300 gallons.

Hardcore anglers will appreciate the 3200's long list of standard and optional features. The 150-square-foot cockpit has two expansive fishboxes that are insulated, macerated and removable for access to the batteries and pumps below. Companion 50-gallon live wells adorn the transom, and you can pull a slob of a tuna through the wide transom gate. Coaming bolsters are standard, along with gunwale rod holders and folding horizontal racks on both sides.

The custom tackle center to starboard features three drawers with tackle boxes. It also has a cutting board/rigging station on top and a storage compartment underneath that is large enough to accommodate a pair of five-gallon buckets. A 60-quart cooler to port serves as a handy receptacle for rigged bait or chum.

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SPECIFICATIONS

LOA: 32'
Beam: 12' 6"
Draft: 1' 8"
Weight: 11,500 lbs.
Deadrise: 15 ¿
Fuel: 300 gals.
Water: 40 gals.
Base price w/ dual
225-hp Honda 4-stroke
outboards: $155,000

Opt for the tournament package and Pro Sports will add outriggers, spreader lights, Bimini top, rocket launcher, fighting chair and other cool goodies. The package comes with a bolstered crow's nest atop the standard hardtop, or you can go with an upper helm station instead.

While the 3200 is a fishing machine, it easily handles double-duty as an island-hopping family cruiser with the Weekender package. Companion seating surrounds the starboard dinette table, which also converts to a berth. Multiple storage compartments below the seats and in the sole are handy for stowing docklines, safety gear and spare parts.

Past the dinette, a folding fiberglass door leads down into the well-lit galley and roomy berths. By virtue of the cat design, there is 6' 6" headroom overall and room for multiple amenities, including wooden cabinetry, a Corian vanity, standard electric head, sink and shower, and ample storage throughout. The galley is equipped with a Corian countertop and wooden storage cabinets above the sink and built-in electric stovetop. An overhead hatch and side ports flood the cabin with natural light.

In addition to the stove, the Weekender package includes a refrigerator, microwave, 12-gallon hot-water heater, 40-gallon water tank and 30-amp battery charger. The optional 4kW diesel generator (with 12-gallon tank for 48 hours of continuous operation) and air-conditioning unit will enhance the comfort level at remote locales.

So whatever your destination - the islands or a distant weed line - the 3200 SportFish from Pro Sports can take you there with ease. What you do afterward is up to you.

Pro Sports, Lincoln, AL; (205) 763-0231; www.prosportsboats.com.