I wish it possible to turn back time and again be seduced by the sights and sounds of Offshore Powerboat Racing in the Bahamas.
Our first exposure to the sport was the Miami Nassau race many years ago; next the never to be forgotten Bahamas 500 and then a continuous schedule of the best Offshore Powerboat Racing this side of the Atlantic.
At the milling areas and race starting lines were the early versions of boats such as Bertram, Formula, Cary, Aronow (Cigarette), Magnum and a few more, powered by legendary motor builders Smokey Yunick, Daytona, Holman Moody, Mercury, Evinrude, and Kiekhaefer. The drivers, throttle-men, navigators and tuners were the seagoing versions of superheroes; men like Dick Bertram, Bill Cooper, Billy Wishnick, Dick Genth, Don Aronow, Knocky House, Doug Silvera, Bill Sirois, Juan Fernandez, Willy Meyers, Jim Brueil, Jake Trotter, Odell Lewis, Jack Stuteville, Sammy James, Mel Riggs, Allan Brown, Rich Luhrs and so many more… and we can never forget Red Crise who, with the assistance of the Lucayan Beach Hotel(GBI), Sheraton British Colonial Hotel, Pilot House(NPI), Nassau Yacht Haven, Shell Bahamas and the marques of Hennessey and Bacardi heading a multitude of commercial partners and sponsors, produced and promoted some of the best Offshore Powerboat Racing ever.
Offshore Powerboat Racing in the Bahamas was a ‘rocket-ride’… a form of motorsports in its various nearshore and offshore formats that mirrored the upward trajectory of the Bahamas. The sport and its substantial fan base had a positive effect on tourism, commerce and the overall image of the Bahamian people.
“But times changed…The Bahamas changed as did the rest of the world and so too did Offshore Powerboat Racing. The romantic notions of an Offshore Powerboat Racing adventure and lifestyle-getaway to the Bahamas gave way to independence, the pragmatic advancements of a new government, changing political and commercial priorities, harsh economic issues, and the rapid advancement of time itself… each of these elements, and more, directly affected the sport of Offshore Powerboat Racing in the Bahamas with heavy consequences.”
Today we are exploring new ideas and developing new event concepts to make this exciting sport a viable part of the lifestyle events schedule in the Bahamas.