Though the Warpath crew of throttleman Daryl Grady and driver Ole Finholdt recently finished sixth out of 12 teams in…More...
During last weekend’s New York City Poker Run, photographer Tim Sharkey made his way down to the docks on the Hudson River where all the boats were tied up. Sharkey captured the action throughout the day, but he sent this gem to speedonthewater.com moments after he took it.
There is a lot to love about this photograph, but what caught our eyes isn’t the flawless blue sky above the Big Apple or the sweet assortment of go-fast boats at the docks on one of busiest and most famous waterways in the world. It’s the Freedom Tower, a monumental reminder of our nation’s courage and will to move forward—and never forget—after one of its darkest days, in the background on the far right side of the image.
It also reminded us of an image taken by the late Tom Newby for Powerboat magazine. In that photo, Newby captured a group of offshore race boats roaring up the Hudson with the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in the background. Just a couple of years later on Sept. 11, 2001, that background would change forever.
About a month after the September 11 atrocity, Powerboat magazine made Newby’s photo into a limited-edition poster, which quickly sold out. All the proceeds from the poster sales were donated to charities for the families of first responders who perished that day.
Healing seemed impossible, as did rebuilding, that day. As Sharkey’s image proves, for a nation such as ours nothing is impossible.
Editor's Note: Sharkey Images will offer a poster version of this image in the near future. Speedonthewater.com will provide information on the poster when it becomes available.
Yesterday afternoon, I exchanged emails with Scott Porter, the chief executive officer of Formula Boats in Decatur, Ind. Most of our discussion had to do with Jason Johnson’s fine recent review of the Formula 353 FAS3Tech with the first pair of production MV8 570 engines from Ilmor Marine. If you’re a frequent visitor to speedonthewater.com, you know that Johnson and I have covered the 570-hp Ilmor engine project since its inception.
As we typically do, Porter and I eventually strayed from our immediate subject and moved on to other topics.
“Just came back from a great weekend at Lake of the Ozarks,” he wrote. “There was an invitation race sanctioned by OSS. Good for the sport and for the local economy. Hope they decide to do it again next year.”
With a few exceptions such as the 50- to 100-footers from Magnum Marine, a 38-foot offshore performance boat used to be considered “big.” That’s the way it was, at least, when I started writing for now-defunct Powerboat magazine in 1994. Mainstream production go-fast builders Baja, Donzi, Fountain and Formula all offered 38-footers—as did custom builder Cigarette Racing Team with its coveted 38’ Top Gun—and they were the standard, so to speak, in full-size offshore boats.
Times have changed—dramatically. Baja, Donzi and Fountain are still awaking from their financially induced comas. Formula still offers its 38-footer but does far more business with its Sun Sport and Super Sport sport-cruiser lines. Cigarette still builds the 38’ Top Gun and the model retains much of its popularity. But none of those 38-footers could be considered large by current standards.
No, if you’re talking large in today’s go-fast boat world, you’re talking about something in the 50-foot range.
After reading Matt Trulio’s OffshoreOnly.com column yesterday on Scott Begovich, the Teddy Bear of the Miss GEICO Offshore Racing team, I was reminded to check in with another throttleman who was inspired to race boats because of his father.
Micheal Stancombe is his name. If you’ve met him once, you know who is. Much like his father, George, he is an unforgettable character in the offshore racing world. The two teamed up to race their Skater Powerboats catamaran Peppers—named after their sports bars in the Indianapolis area—for many years and many victories.
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