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Speed On The Water
Earlier this week I caught up with Alexi Sahagian of Boostpower USA in Newbury Park, Calif., and got the chance to see firsthand a pair of the company’s 2,200-hp engines sitting in a 40-foot Marine Technology Inc. (MTI) catamaran owned by Dave Marabella of Vista, Calif.
All I have to say is wow. The impressive 814-cubic-inch supercharged engines are selectable from 1,800 hp on pump gas to 2,200 hp with a minimum 113 octane. Sahagian has been running 115-octane C16 VP fuel in the engines, and has put more than 60 hours on them between the dyno and the time spent this summer and fall in Marabella’s MTI on Arizona’s Lake Havasu or in the Pacific Ocean.
The “mega” big blocks, which were developed by Sahagian and his friend and mentor Sonny Leonard of Sonny’s Automotive Racing, took the place of the 1,500-hp Boostpower USA engines that were in the boat for the last few seasons. Sahagian said Marabella also has a second set of engines and, get this, they are being used for research and development to see if there’s more power available.
With roughly 50 boats in attendance, the 2012 Boating Toys for Tots Tour proved once again why it’s a boating event like no other. With U.S. Marines standing on the docks in Welaka, Fla., boaters from across the state and other parts of the country delivered toys and gifts for the annual toy collection drive.
Starting in Palatka, boaters ran south on the St. Johns River on Saturday, Nov. 17, and dropped off bags upon bags of toys to the Marines. Afterward participants gathered at the Welaka Lodge for lunch and later were treated to a party with a live band at the Quality Inn in Palatka.
“The event went real well this year,” said organizer Rus Matos, who moved the Boating Toys for Tots Tour up a few weeks to try to entice boaters returning from the Key West Poker Run to stop in northeast Florida and do something meaningful and heartwarming. “I don’t think it helped us to have our date right up against Key West this year, but we still had a great turnout and we delivered thousands and thousands of dollars worth of toys. Next year we'll probably move it back to the first weekend of December again.”
Located in Bristol, R.I., Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats is in the process of moving to a new 80,000-square-foot plant approximately three miles from its current home. The move gives the custom high-performance V-bottom and catamaran builder an additional 50,000 square feet of space for new-boat production, expanded service opeations, a new repower center and added storage.
“We should be operational at the new place in seven days,” said Mike Fiore, the founder and owner of Outerlimits. “We’re animals right now running around to get it all done.”
According to Fiore, the new plant currently is being outfitted with a heating facility for post-curing its carbon fiber and epoxy offerings. The larger plant also will give the builder the space it needs to add two new services.
“We are adding a repower service for Mercury Racing engines, just like we did out West (Read the story),” said Fiore. “It’s something we’re very good at, and a service that very few companies offer.
“We’re also going to add an Outerlimits certification service,” he continued. “It will be a complete inspection and certification service for all the pre-owned Outerlimits models we take in on trade.”
Outerlimits has occupied three facilities in Bristol. The first was 12,000 square feet.
There’s a reason the Offshore Only general discussion was buzzing last week when the news became public knowledge that Tim Gallagher was joining the team at Marine Technology Inc. (MTI), a company known for its stellar high-performance catamarans. (Read Matt Trulio’s story on speedonthewater.com.)
Gallagher is as likeable as anyone in the marine industry—I’ve never heard anyone say a negative thing about him, and that’s a hard reputation to come by. But he works hard for that reputation; he takes pride in it, too. He has ever since the day he gave notice at Evinrude to join the sales team at Cigarette Racing. In 2010, Gallagher left his job as Cigarette’s sales director to assume general manager responsibilities at Deep Impact Boats, a role he held until last week.