Lucas Oil SilverHook—A Year in the Making

A little more than a year after offshore racers Nigel Hook and Michael Silfverberg shipped their brand new model—a 48-foot SilverHook (named after the two owners)—to a race in Malta, the teammates are starting to take advantage of the knowledge they’ve gained while competing in and testing the unique V-bottom.

Nigel Hook and Michael Silfverberg are campaigning their Lucas Oil-sponsored SilverHook boat in the Super Boat International series this season. Photo courtesy Rodrick CoxNigel Hook and Michael Silfverberg are campaigning their Lucas Oil-sponsored SilverHook boat in the Super Boat International series this season. Photo courtesy Rodrick CoxAfter winning the Superboat Vee Extreme class at the Super Boat International Suncoast Grand Prix in Sarasota, Fla., a couple of weeks ago, Hook and Silfverberg will be racing the Lucas Oil-sponsored boat at this weekend’s Miami Grand Prix (you can watch the races live here).

And while the boat was fast—its average lap speed was 97.25 mph—and it exhibited good handling in and out of turns in the fairly calm Sarasota waters, Hook knows there’s a lot more to learn in the boat, which is powered by twin 930-hp Sterling Performance engines connected to BPM shaft drives.

“What we’ve really learned along the way was how different this V-hull is from anything out there,” said Hook, who lives in San Diego and has been the throttleman alongside driver Silfverberg, who hails from Sweden, for the past four years. “Beyond a handful of boats built for endurance runs, our setup with a fixed rudder and fixed shaft drives is unheard of—we’re in an area where there’s very little precedence.

The Lucas Oil team celebrates its victory in Sarasota, Fla. Photo courtesy Chuck CarrollThe Lucas Oil team celebrates its victory in Sarasota, Fla. Photo courtesy Chuck Carroll“It took time to learn how the boat corners because the rudder stays straight, and unlike other rudder V-bottoms out there with steerable Arneson surface drives, the propellers are also always pushing the same way as the rudder,” he continued. “It’s just different, but as we’ve worked out the bugs in the boat’s rigging and setup, we’re starting to realize the advantages.”

The team hasn’t been able to test as much as it would like, but Hook said it is learning a lot from the technology available nowadays. The boat, which was built by Mystic Powerboats, is rigged with four cameras and telemetry equipment so the team can gather in-race information and analyze post-race analytics with a visual of what was happening at that moment.

“It’s not like the old-fashioned way we used to test boats,” Hook said with a laugh. “Everything is saved on the computer and we can look at it all. Our efficiency around the course and with fuel consumption has improved dramatically.”

Related stories

Glbreath Named SilverHook Team Manager