Not since the late-1990s and early 2000s has offshore powerboat racing been as poised for success as it is at the moment. The 2022 season, from the midpoint on, boasted strong fleets in the Super Stock, Super Cat and Class 1 ranks, making the pandemic-forced interruptions of 2020 and 2021 seem like a couple of small and ultimately forgettable speed bumps on the path to success.
With solid fleets in its top four spec classes, offshore powerboat racing is headed toward its greatest season in more than two decades. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
And, as you’ll read in the next several pages, the 2023 season is looking even better. Super Stock will begin its season at the American Power Boat Association Offshore National Championship Series season-opener, April 28-30, in Marathon, Fla., with a dozen teams. The Super Cat fleet will have 10 teams in the Race World Offshore-produced event.
The Class 1 series, which competes under the Union Internationale Motonautique banner (APBA is part of UIM) and is being produced and marketed by United Kingdom- based Powerboat P1, will see eight boats take the green flag at its season-opener, May 17-20, in Cocoa Beach, Fla.
Then there is the Mod V class of single-engine V-bottoms. As you’ll read in speedonthewater.com offshore correspondent Eric Colby’s fine story, Mod V has absorbed Stock V, another single-engine V-bottom category, and will have 10 to 12 teams in the mix this season. And as you’ll learn from Colby’s piece, a welcomed— and somewhat unexpected— resurgence is happening in the Extreme V ranks.
But boat-counts are just one measure of success. The return of the historic Marathon venue is another great sign. Celebrating its 50th anniversary, Mercury Racing also is bringing Class 1, Super Stock and tunnel-boat racing to Sheboygan, Wis., this summer.
Though Offshore Powerboat Association events are open to the spec classes, the Bracket classes deliver the lion’s share of participants in the APBA- member, New Jersey-based organization. There are eight events, including the Englewood Beach (Fla.) Waterfest World Championships, on the outfit’s 2023 roster.
Teams are pumped and ready to pick up where they left off last season with UIM world titles going to M CON in Super Cat, Team Allen Lawn Care and Landscaping in Super Stock and Huski Chocolate in Class 1. Let the green flags fly.
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