Shootout Buzz

Between Matt Trulio’s column a few weeks back featuring reaction to the change in course length adopted by a few top-speed shootout events around the country, including the top-dog Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Missouri, to the program stories I’ve been working on for both the Lake of the Ozarks event (August 26-27) and the Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees Performance Boat Challenge Shootout (July 13-16) in Oklahoma, I’ve been knee-deep in shootout conversations and I’m pretty amped up because of it.

George Ogden is going to run his E-Ticket Luxury Cat with recently repowered Teague Custom Marine engines at the Desert Storm Poker Run next week.

George Ogden is going to run his E-Ticket Luxury Cat, which was recently repowered with twin 1,100-hp Teague Custom Marine engines, at the Desert Storm Poker Run next week. Photo by Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

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Hot Stuff Headed to Tickfaw

It’s hard to believe the Tickfaw 200 Poker Run hosted by Blood River Landing in Springfield, La., is only 15 days away. The closer we get to the one-of-a-kind event, the more and more I want to be there. Unfortunately I’ve already committed to attending the Desert Storm Poker Run in Lake Havasu City, Ariz.

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Shown running his 36-foot Skater Powerboats catamaran, Dirty Money, at the 2016 Tickfaw 200 Poker Run, Georgia's Beau Renfroe plans to show off his revamped boat at the event in May. Photo by Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

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Learning from a Serious and Deadly Accident

On Saturday morning a couple of my friends in the boating community forwarded me a link to a story that was posted on Lake News Online, a local media outlet serving Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks and beyond. It was an informative story that caught me a little off guard. It also was somewhat unsettling as I ping-ponged between grief, unhappiness and downright aggravation.

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The damage to Richie Prince's catamaran following a crash on Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks last August is a sobering reminder of how bad things can get when they go wrong on the water. Photo courtesy MSHP

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Busy As Usual at Teague Custom Marine

As usual, a trip to Valencia, Calif.—the home of Teague Custom Marine— left me with plenty of story ideas for this month, next month and even next year. For example, George Ogden, a performance boater I’ve met several times between the Desert Storm Poker Run in his hometown of Lake Havasu City, Ariz., and the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Missouri, had his E-Ticket Performance Boats 29 Luxury Cat in the shop for an engine refresh and some transom and exhaust work.

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A Magic deck boat, a Spectre sport cat and a 29-foot E-Ticket were front and center in the service bays at Teague Custom Marine.

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Wanted Very Much Alive: Clean Pre-owned V-bottoms

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Right now, large V-bottoms in great shape are hottest ticket in the pre-owned performance boat market. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

Though it’s not nearly as fun as taking fast boat rides or as creatively satisfying as writing columns and news stories, a healthy portion of my professional life is spent on the phone. As relatively new to journalism as the digital world is, the old-school reporter’s practice of simply picking up the phone every day and “working your beat” to find out what’s happening and what’s new has not been improved upon. Information technologies such as text messaging and email have made things more efficient, but there’s no substitute for just picking up the phone.

Among the folks I routinely check in with are those who sell new and pre-owned powerboats. My regular call list includes Mindi Doller at Doller Offshore Marine and Randy Sweers of FB Marine Group—both based in Florida—as well as Brett Manire of Performance Boat Center in Missouri. As you’d expect, they’re different people with different personalities but lately they’ve been singing the same tune.

They need clean pre-owned V-bottoms no more than 10 years old to sell because demand for such boats has never been hotter. For Doller, the biggest and most current customer craving is for “V-bottoms 44 feet and larger with big power.”

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