Formula boards are much faster upwind than keel boats if there is enough wind (over 12 knots). They can't point as high, maybe 1520 degrees less, but the formula boards easily have double the speed or more. Bottom line is they can easily get to windward faster than almost anything.
To be competitive downwind, a little more wind is necessary, at least 15 knots would be needed for deepest run with max speed. Formula can't run as deep (can't go dead downwind), but the better speed makes the difference.
Two weeks ago, I raced my formula in 26 knot winds and hit a top speed of 25 knots running downwind. I am really conservative when I race Formula since I am an old guy out to have fun, so I was on a Maui Sails TR 4 6.6. Most of the other racers were on 8.5 sails, but they are younger guys. I finished fourth.
There are some sailboat planing hulls that can match formula downwind, but I don't believe they can do as well upwind.
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Toys:
Formula 160; iSonic 111; HiFly Move 105; Tiga 263; '85 Mistral Superlight.
Maui Sails TR 11.0; 9.2; 8.4; 7.6; 6.6; Maui Sails Switch 6.0; 5.2; Maui Sails Global 4.5; 4.0.
