Here is proof positive that age is just a number: Reggie Fountain, Jr., the man who built Fountain Powerboats in Washington, N.C., the once the dominant force in the high-performance powerboat industry, will be 78 years old in April. And while you won’t find him running offshore raceboats solo anymore—as was his custom back in the 1980s and 1990s—this true Southern gentleman is as mentally sharp, ambitious, charming and flat-out entertaining as he ever was.

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With Fountain Powerboats gearing up for a V-bottom speed-record attempt with a purpose-built 40-footer (above), the company’s namesake is back in the spotlight. And that’s great news for the industry.

Now employed by the company he founded, Fountain is leading the outfit’s V-bottom kilometer speed-record attempt project. Reportedly a longtime admirer of the man, Iconic Marine Group—the parent company of the Fountain, Donzi and Baja brands—owner Fred Ross knew that no Fountain record attempt would be close to complete without Reggie Fountain Jr., involved.

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Shown here at the Super Boat International Offshore World Championships in Key West Fla., with fiancé Linda Foreman, Reggie Fountain, Jr., is leading the Fountain Powerboats kilo boat project. Photo by Jason Johnson/

“I’m delighted to be back,” Fountain said in a brief telephone interview. “I want to help bring excitement back to all the Fountain boats, from sportboats to center consoles.”

Read More: A Star Is Reborn

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