Performance Boat Center Crowned World Champion Superboat Class
Key West, Fla (November 17, 2017) — The 37th Annual Super Boat International Key West World Championship did not disappoint fans as the world’s fastest boats converged on Key West after hurricane Irma with team Miss GEICO taking first overall. The weekend was not without mishaps as two Superboat Unlimiteds collided in spectacular fashion along with numerous spinouts and collisions of boats. Fortunately, all without injury.
The Miss GEICO team came off a hiatus of miscues and seasons of letting the title slip away, but it was this year that the team took an opening day, fifth place finish, before securing first place finishes the last 2 days of racing.
In the Superboat Class, Performance Boat Center (2017 National Champion) repeated last year’s World Championship performance with a victory on day 2 & 3 to take top podium finish.
“The races this year were very exciting to watch and there was some great competition with new winners this year,” commented John Carbonell, founder of Super Boat International. “We do our very best to get the best teams in the ‘World’ here to compete and this year was no different. With participants from Turkey, Trinidad, United Kingdom, New Zealand, Norway and central Europe to name a few. And that is in addition to over 25 states that American Teams traveled from to participate.”
Great racing included first time World Champion, Shadow Pirate. On the final day of racing with a spin in turn 3, they still overcame their deficit and overtook FJ Propeller and CR Racing for first place.
Steve Curtis (throttleman) and James Sheppard (driver) lead Miss GEICO to a Championship finish after years of struggles. Gray Stray, crew chief for the team commented, “I feel relieved, most of all, we had some struggles over the past two years and we worked and worked to get things right. You know, even when you go out and lose races you put as much work into them as the ones you win. We felt like we’ve really turned a corner on our engine package and Steve and James ran a flawless race today. We had a plan going into it. We know our competitors are squeezing their engines so we said, ‘Let’s stay on their hip, maybe be two or three seconds behind, and see if they break.’ That was the game plan, and that’s how it panned out. In moments when you are trying to make all this stuff work and it’s not happening, you start to doubt yourself a little bit,” he added. “I knew we had such a fantastic team and that we just had to try to keep everybody’s chins up. It’s easy to win, and hard to lose—that’s where you see what a real team is. Today was the fruit of our labor, and it was phenomenal.”
Johnny Tomlinson and Myrick Coil lead their team to a back to back World Championship title. “We knew we had to beat WHM to win the championship,” Tomlinson said. “He got a good run into turn No. 1 at the start, but between turn No. 1 and turn No. 2 we were able to keep the boat in the water better and take over the racecourse. It was getting rougher and rougher starting around lap eight so we tightened it up. But I could see our gap ahead of WHM was changing, so we had to run it hard again. It got bumpier and bumpier going in the harbor and we had to manage that and try not to make any mistakes,” he continued. “But WHM definitely was coming on, and it would have been interesting to see what happened if they’d had a few more laps.”
If you missed the 2017 Key West World Championship, you can go to superboat.com and the Livestream page, register and replay all the exciting action. Three days of racing with four races each day is a lot of racing to catch up on. All the days races can be seen again over and over and you won’t miss any of the action.
37th Annual Key West World Championship Results
1st Miss GEICO 113. 2nd Team CRC Sunlight Supply 7. 3rd Wake Effects 17
1st Performance Boat Center US-1. 2nd WHM 5. 3rd STIHL 13.
1st AMH Construction/Instigator
1st LSB Hurricane of Awesomeness 67. 2nd Boatfloater.com 2. 3rd Mr. Technology 32.
1st Shadow Pirate S-55. 2nd FJ Propeller S-1. 3rd CR Racing S-8.
Manufacturer Production 3
1st 2nd Amendment P3-2. 2nd The Developer P3-3. 3rd Halcyon Connect P3-74.
Manufacturer Production 4
1st Team Allen Lawn Care P4-17. 2nd Reinforcer P4-46. 3rd J&J Const Team Woody.
Click here for a complete listing of the finishing order and results from the Key West World Championships.