After three years of covering the development of the first pair of 1,700-hp engines from Sterling Performance on speednthewater.com, when…More...
The Victory Team's Arif Al Zaffain and Mohammed Al Marri dominated the second race of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix…More...
Speed On The Water
In no small way, Martin Sanborn and the rest of the folks behind P1 SuperStock USA couldn't have picked a worse time to launch a powerboat racing series when they decided to get going in 2010. The United States economy was on the ropes and the boating industry was hanging from them. And the high-performance segment of the industry? It was dangling by a thread.
Even Sanborn's biggest fans—and after a lifetime in the go-fast industry with Fountain Powerboats, as an offshore racer and as a broadcaster/commentator he has made quite a few of them—wondered if he'd lost his mind. Not only was the industry in dire straits, offshore racing was continuing its steady decline. The idea of yet another powerboat racing series seemed completely far-fetched, if not outright nuts.
But then something funny happened on the way to the racecourse. Despite the demise of Powerboat P1 Evolution- and Stock-class racing in Europe, what remained—the SuperStock class—began to gain momentum. And the same thing began to happen with the new series in the United States.
(Photo courtesy/copyright Jeff Gerardi/FreezeFrame Video.)
The Qatar Marine Sports Federation will host the fourth round of the 2013 UIM F1 H2O World Championship and the inaugural Qatar Nations Cup this week on Doha Bay, according to a press release from the organization. Among the highlights of this week's action will be the Qatar Team's intra-squad battle between top gun Alex Carella and rising American star Shaun Torrente, both of whom will take on the sport's best F1 drivers from Italy, Lebanon, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Norway, Russia and Saudi Arabia at this week's inaugural Qatar-hosted Nations Cup this week.
In the Nations Cup format, up to four drivers are selected to represent their countries. They participate in practice sessions, timed trials and a series of match races on Thursday before further practice and sprint races on Friday. The format was "the brainchild" of H2O Racing and has already worked successfully in Singapore in 2011 and Khor Fakkan in the United Arab Emirates in 2012, according to the release.
Despite that a source inside the Clearwater, Fla., business community recently asserted that there will be "no World Championships" for Super Boat International in the Gulf Coast city and a civic leader who called the possibility of hosting the event "doubtful for next year," the site reportedly remains a possibility for the next SBI World Championships. Discussions between Clearwater business leaders and John Carbonell of Super Boat International reportedly are ongoing.
"We are still negotiating," said Frank Chivas, a prominent local businessman who heads the Baystar Restaurant Group and is one of the founders and key organizers of the annual SBI National Championship event in Clearwater.
Baja Marine has created digital brochures for its 2014 model-year Baja, Donzi and Fountain powerboats in an effort to decrease the amount of paper it produces and reduce the company's "environmental footprint," according to a press release from the Washington, N.C. boat builder. In 2014, the company's various dealers will distribute the digital brochures to prospective customers during boat shows on custom-designed USB drives displaying each company's logo. Each brand's brochure also is accessible through its website.
"Now our customers don't have to walk around a boat show with a bag of brochures —they can print out just the page they need, or pull it up on their smartphone and use it to compare the boat they are considering with other models," said Johnny Walker, the chief executive officer of Baja Marine. "We feel our customers are savvy about digital media. It's an electronic world."