I got the concept of A-cat masts being fragile based solely on anecdotal evidence from sailors I knew that had those boats. And I'm sure it was comparing to my (relatively) heavy carbon N20 mast. That thing, while far from bulletproof, was very forgiving of my amateur abilities... It tolerated the occasional loose mainsheet spin flying (looking at some pictures, I still cringe at the mast bend)
I was only partially aware of the ability to fix those A-cat masts (Herenden had one I was considering to buy), and didn't know if the technique was proven reliable.
It's all relative anyway. A "fragile" mast may mean something far different to me than you. As I had a tendency to dig for clams quite often I would suspect more mast damage in my case than someone like you who actually figured out which end was supposed to point toward the sky
And yes, with the slightly larger boats comes more opportunity to be social on a boat. You can move around while sailing (not strapped on a wire in one spot) and you can bring those less experienced on board to help them gain skills without a lot of swimming.
But you do have to give up the thrill of a really light, fast boat ripping around the course. I think my top speed has only been in the low 20's on a beam reach in about 25 TWS. I think I'd have to reef beyond that which would probably reduce the top speed potential (and it gets pretty wavy). The last W/L regatta in 15kts TWS had the F-24 upwind at 11 and downwind at 17 in small swell.
15-18 kts through the water seems to be the sweet spot for the F-24: powered, feels like it's planing, but not so powered as to feel the rig is overloaded. The newer (Dash/Sprint) seem comfortable 18-20kt but have to reef a little sooner. The F-31 is a ballistic missile it seems, with very little to limit the top end speed.
I think the Corsair Pulse and the F-22 both have tremendous potential as pocket rockets with their light weight and big sailplans.
The M-23 (or whatever it was called) looked awesome, but may need some adjustments in rig and sailing technique to master it's potential. And a little more involved in setup/breakdown.