Inside SOTW Mag: Saving The Best For Last

With just four races on its 2017 regular season schedule, it was clear from the start that Super Boat International—despite its robust and compelling Superboat class—wasn’t going to set the world on fire this year with its event roster. Just two of those races, the season-opener in Cocoa Beach and the National Championships in Clearwater, were in Florida, making the “Florida State Championship” title more than a little silly. The other two were in Mentor, Ohio, and Michigan City, Ind., venues that, though popular with fans in both areas, historically draw light showings across all SBI classes.

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After a rocky 2017 season, Super Boat International redeemed itself at its Key West Offshore World Championship. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

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And with sporadic fleets other than the Superboat class, the 2017 lived up—or down if you will—to the low expectations SBI racers and fans had for it. Both groups knew that SBI typically saves its best for last with a three-race grand finale in Key West, Fla., but regardless the regular season did not bode well for a spectacular finish to what was, for all intents and purposes, a pretty dismal year.

But then Key West, still on the road to recovery from Hurricane Irma, did what it has done for so many years—during a week of mostly blue skies and mild temperatures it delivered the kind of offshore racing action and storylines that will keep fans coming back for years to come.

What are we talking about, you ask? Where do we begin, we reply?

To read the full story, click the download link for the PDF of the November/December 2017 Speed On The Water magazine, and please share any feedback with us below, via email or on social media. 

Inside SOTW Mag: Remembering Joe Sgro

A veteran offshore racer with multiple world titles, AMH Construction/Instigator team owner Peter Meyer looked lost as he wandered around the Super Boat International Offshore World Championships pits on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in mid November. The death of 66-year-old Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats principal Joe Sgro, his longtime competitor on the racecourse and dear friend off it, on Thursday during the Florida Powerboat Club’s annual Key West Poker Run, clearly devastated the multi-time offshore world championship winner. It was all he could do to get through the weekend.

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Quiet and shy by nature, Joe Sgro (in red T-shirt) had touched many lives, especially since picking up the reigns of Outerlimits in late 2014. Photo copyright speedonthewater.com.

Read more: Inside SOTW Mag: Remembering Joe Sgro

The Key West Issue! New Speed On The Water Magazine Is Live

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With such a large spotlight on Key West, Fla., for the 2017 Super Boat International Key West Offshore World Championships and the Key West Poker Run hosted by the Florida Powerboat Club, we figured why not dedicate the entire year-end digital magazine to the event. So we did, and the November/December 2017 issue is the result.

Read more: The Key West Issue! New Speed On The Water Magazine Is Live

Inside SOTW Mag: Project—Déjà vu F32

Once upon a time, Jeff Johnston, Jason Johnson and I worked for Powerboat magazine. Johnston was an advertising salesman—a damn good one—and Johnson and I were editors/writers. For about three weeks out of the year, the three of us became part of the Powerboat test team. Johnston drove boats for photos, assisted his customers and helped photographer Tom Newby at the docks. Johnson and I handled inspections and rode with either Bob Teague or John Tomlinson—our well-known test drivers—to help gather the data we would forge into Performance Reports.

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In 2007, a DCB Performance Boats F32 catamaran dazzled the Powerboat magazine test team. Thanks to a makeover this year, the 32-footer is now better than new. Photo courtesy/copyright DCB Performance Boats.

Read more: Inside SOTW Mag: Project—Déjà vu F32

Inside SOTW Mag: Fine Family Affairs— Regattas and Rendezvous Of 2017

Brand-specific high-performance powerboat gatherings have long been staple of the go-fast boating world, especially on the West Coast. And why not? Owners of exotic aquatic hardware are passionate about their favorite toys—and fiercely devoted their respective brands. That they appreciate spending time with others who chose toys from the same builder makes perfect sense.

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Celebrations of owner passion and loyalty, four brand-specific gatherings this season were as good as they get. Photo courtesy/copyright Tom Leigh/Tommy Gun Images.

Call them regattas and rendezvous, such events are ultimate win-win for boat builders and their customers. The builders get the chance to thank their loyal customers—and maybe even sell a few boats—and those customers get to spend time with people who shared their excellent taste when it came time to buy.

While there were dozens of such high-quality brand-specific events this season, what follows is a look back at four that stood out hosted by Marine Technology, Inc., Cigarette Racing Team and DCB Performance Boats. And while the atmosphere during each happening was a different as the brands themselves, all were—by the accounts of the participants and their hosts—exceptional.

To read the full story, click the download link for the PDF of the September/October 2017 Speed On The Water magazine, and please share any feedback with us below, via email or on social media.