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BRAWLIN’ IN BURLEY

BORN AGAIN

New Life Restored! • 36' Eliminator • 20' Schiada


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Where true luxury meets speed and dependability at over 110mph.

Your next boat purchase is an investment in both your family and yourself. Make the right choice.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS September 2015

COLUMNS 8 RAY LEE 10 ALEXI SAHAGIAN 58 READER RIDES

32 LIVIN’ LARGE

FEATURES

We hired a professional detailer to test Jet Renu’s line of cleaners, waxers and degreasers.

14 SIZZLIN’ ST. CLAIR SHOWDOWN

42 CATALINA SKI RACE

Bob Teague rules the roost in a battle of offshore muscle in Michigan.

Speedboat and photographer Paul Kemiel salute the offshore race triumphs of legendary Al Copeland.

38 LET IT SHINE

Australian skier Jake Tegart wins the 67th annual competition.

46 NICK OF TIME 20 BORN AGAIN Eliminator client Joe Juliano hopes his 36' Speedster project will help relaunch this exceptional model.

26 BOYNE TO RUN

Nick Stoltz performs a total makeover of his his Eliminator Daytona.

54 PIRATES OF LANIER LAKE John Woodruff and his team raise huge cash for kids at the Pirates of Lanier Poker Run.

Boyne City, MI, may be tiny, but its charity poker run is colossal entertainment.

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Speedboat.com To find your nearest location to purchase a copy of Speedboat Magazine go to: www.WheresMyMagazine.com

Published by DCO Enterprises, LLC Publishers Ray Lee ray@speedboat.com

Chris Davidson chris@speedboat.com

Editor Brett Bayne brett@speedboat.com

Senior Tech Editors Jim Wilkes jim@speedboat.com

Alexi Sahagian alexi@speedboat.com

Tech Editors Greg Shoemaker Jim Wilkes Valerie Collins National Sales Ray Lee Director ray@speedboat.com

BRETT’S COVE 66 FOLKES HERO With a little help from his friends, Frank Folkes transforms his Rayson Craft into something truly sublime.

72 BEASTS OF BURLEY Three days of the fastest inboard circle racing in the United States.

78 SHE’S A BEAUTY Jon Buford’s Schiada is a retro slice of pure performance heaven.

Art Director Gail Hada-Insley Helicopter Services Fred Young fyoung@live.com

Photographers Todd Taylor, Andrew Gates Randy Nuzzo, Kenny Dunlop, Paul Kemiel, Jeff Girardi, Mark McLaughlin Operations Manager Michele Plummer michele@speedboat.com

Subscriptions Valerie Snedeker valerie@speedboat.com

Webmaster Baron Miller baron@buzzboxmedia.com

Web Design Buzzboxmedia Editorial Offices 9216 Bally Court Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730 (888) 577-2628 (BOAT)

Cover photo by Todd Taylor Table of Contents photo by Dennis Martz / Aerial Peek, Tuscon, AZ Editorial: Speedboat Magazine assumes no responsibility for unsolicited material. All manuscripts, materials, photographs and artwork submitted are at mailer’s risk and must include self-addressed envelope with proper postage if requested to be returned. All letters sent to Speedboat will be treated as unconditionally assigned for publication and copyright purposes, and are subject to Performance Boats’ right to edit and comment editorially. All rights reserved. Reprinting in whole or part is expressly forbidden, except by written permission of the publisher. Postmaster: Send address changes to Postmaster: Send address changes to Speedboat Magazine, 9216 Bally Court, Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730.

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SPEEDBOAT MAGAZINE (ISSN#1941-9473) is published 8 times a year by DCO Enterprises LLC. SUBSCRIPTIONS: Domestic $34.00 for 8 issues, Canada $56.00 for 8 issues, International $60.00 for 8 issues. All prices are for one year and in US funds. For subscription info: call (888) 577-2628. PRINTED IN USA These rates represent Speedboat’s standard subscription rate and should not be confused with any special rates or premiums otherwise advertised or offered.

SPEEDBOAT |

September 2015

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OBSERVER’S SEAT RAY LEE

The Big Picture

I don’t consider myself a “professional photographer” by any means, but I sometimes play one in this magazine. There are a lot of them within this industry that I admire and I am in awe of their work. Speedboat photographers Todd Taylor, Kenny Dunlop and Mark McLaughlin always shoot some amazing images and I am proud to have them on our team. Pete Boden, Jay Nichols, Paul Kemiel and Randy Nuzzo also take some great shots, and we frequently use their images within our pages because of their consistently outstanding photography. The pictures that we bring to you each and every issue are certainly ones that we are proud of and have gone to a considerable amount of effort to capture or obtain. Some come easier than most, while others have been just downright hard to get. Whether it’s due to location, vantage points, lighting concerns, weather conditions, technical glitches or merely acquiring them from the contributing photographer, there are usually issues to contend with to “get the shot.” On July 18, I went to shoot the 67th Annual Catalina Ski Race in Long Beach, CA, where I was fortunate enough to hitch a ride aboard John Luntz’s Nordic Patrol Boat. This was an “official” event 8

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vessel so we were able to go almost anywhere we wanted. With Commodore Rich Hughes at the helm, they positioned me near the starting line of the race as the fleet took off and also right at the finish buoy as they all came back to complete the 62-mile trek. I was very grateful to have Rich and John shuttle me into any and every desired position to capture these images and I hope you enjoy the feature on page 42. Of course, the best vantage point to cover an event is by helicopter and Speedboat Magazine is very fortunate to have Super-Pilot Fred Young as a team member. He flies our photographers at a lot of these events and can place his aircraft into some amazing and jawdropping positions. Fred is responsible for the majority of the cover shots taken this year, including this one, and I personally would like to thank him for his talents and dedication to the sport and our magazine. We scheduled the helicopter photo shoot in the early morning hours of Sunday, July 5; the day after America (and boaters) celebrated its birthday. It obviously wasn’t the ideal day to plan it, but it was the only time that seemed to work best for everyone involved. Fred flew down from Las Vegas, NV to Lake

Havasu City, AZ with Brian Lorenz, owner of 702 Helicopters, to accommodate us to capture the perfect shot for our September 2015 cover. To best utilize the morning sunlight, we had originally thought that a 5:30 a.m. start time would be a good idea. It wasn’t. We quickly reconsidered and postponed until 8:00 a.m., to the delight and relief of everyone! Myself included. Todd Taylor went airborne with Fred as I climbed aboard Joe Juliano’s newly renovated 36’ Eliminator Speedster. (Read the full story on pg.20.) Just as we were under way and about to get on plane, the starboard engine sounded an alarm. Oil pressure issue. Joe went through a couple measures to resolve the issue but the alarm kept yelling at us. I was certain that we were going to have to abort mission. It was at that time that Joe tells me, “’F’ it! Let’s RUN!” He ignored the persistent beeping and we roared onto plane. He brought his boat up to speed with the chopper chasing just feet overhead. I felt the downdraft of the helicopter blades as I watched the speedo and tach continue to tick upward. In my peripheral vision, I could see Todd clicking feverishly away at his camera while dangling out of the helicopter, as it danced all around us in the early morning sky. We continued racing down the waterway with the helicopter in pursuit. The seconds seemed like hours as I kept anticipating a colossal engine failure and the dreaded long idle back. But that didn’t happen. It was over. The helicopter peeled off as we turned and headed safely back towards the docks. There were no alarms to be heard and both engines were purring contently. Joe was relieved and so was I… I knew we had “gotten the shot.” And I was right. It’s on the cover. speedboat.com

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ON THE DYNO ALEXI SAHAGIAN Restriction of Power Dear Alexi: I have a DCB Mach 26 powered by a Mercury 525. I like the boat, but ever since I bought it used, it beeps while I’m running at WOT. Perhaps I am at the maximum rpm? It is a very annoying beep, power it restricted, then it comes back. Can you elaborate? Todd Meldin Carson City, NV

It seems as though you are resting on the rev limiter. So when you purchased the boat, it may have just a bit too small of a propeller on it and when you run it out, it tries to exceed the 5,200 (+ or -) factory rev limiter. Usually, depending on the software build that is installed in your ECU, the engine will beep twice and pull back a bit on the power. Perhaps you need to try a one size bigger prop. Or, if you really need to try hard to make it do that, a lab prop will give you the load edge you need to stay away from it. Rev limiters are great to protect your engine, valve components etc. However, they can be rough on any engine so get that dialed in. It is a great package—perhaps consider getting a professional to help you set it up.

lifters. I set them at one-half of a turn when the rocker is closed all the way. It seems fine, but every once in a while, it sounds like one is loose. Your thoughts? Joe Meztner Atlanta, GA The adjustment process is fairly common among most brand lifters that are hydraulic. The best way to explain it is like this: You must make sure that the camshaft and lifter relationship is proper before attempting to adjust. Make sure you are 180 degrees from the center of the max lobe lift (on the base) of the camshaft. We refer to this as its lowest point. Once on this, turn the adjuster nut in until the plunger starts to drop or the lash is zero (depending on if the lifter is pumped up or not). Once you establish this relationship, adjust the nut threequarters of a full 360 degree turn and lock it down. Once you do this to all of them, and assure you start your adjustment on the base circle, your engine should run well and have even oil pressure and lifter noise if any. Please make sure you use good oil to properly lube the lifters.

More Power, Less Speed? Dear Alexi: I have a single-engine boat with a supercharged big-block engine in it. It has dual carburetors and runs decent. I had it dyno tested at my local automotive dyno shop and the report was it made 850 hp. My old motor made 725 hp from a different shop and seemed to actually run better in my boat. The boat is a 25' Eliminator Daytona. Why would a more powerful engine not pull the rpm? I am disappointed as I spent a ton of money and did a lot of the labor myself. Dave Forester Houston, TX

Hydraulic Lifters Hello Alexi: I have a 540-cubic-inch big-block engine I built with a roller cam and roller lifters. It runs pretty well, but I have a question about adjusting my hydraulic 10

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For starters, most engines do not come off of the dyno machine with clean numbers like 750, 850, etc. Usually they are more like 848.2 or 722.9. If someone tells you 750, it is usually the average number.

The main number you should focus on is the torque and at what rpm. If your engine produces 725 hp but yields at torque rating of 800 ft./lbs., it may run better then an 800 hp motor with 710 ft./lbs. That would be based on the boat, gearing and the crest it needs to overcome based on those variables. I would review the torque numbers with your providers to see what the real comparisons are and that should determine what is going on. A lot of the time customers will come to us and state they changed nothing yet the gear ratio or new prop was installed even though it was to be the same as prior. I always reply by saying, “The gears are the same, but no two props are alike out of the box!”

Starter Relay for High Compression Dear Alexi: I have a 24' boat with a large-hp engine. I was wondering what starter slave solenoid you recommend for the engine. It is a high-compression engine and has a fairly older wiring harness in the boat. I keep burning up the plastic ones after a short period of time. Samuel Hart Plano, TX If you have a high-compression engine, I would recommend a Cole Hersey rubber encapsulated starter solenoid and use large un-interrupted wires feeding it. We will assume you have a high torque-gear reduction starter for this engine. If not, it will overload the circuit and you will have this described problem forever. We usually use the Hitachi or the MSD high torque starters for high compression and use a Cole Hersey slave to give it raw undisturbed amperage from the batteries direct and it works great. Check out your system and verify the wiring is stout going to the solenoid. speedboat.com

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Sizzlin’ St. Clair Bob Teague rules the roost in a battle of offshore muscle in Michigan.

Showdown

Bob Teague’s 368 Douglas Marine Skater is powered by a pair of 780-hp Ilmor engines.

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pectators lined the As the checkered flag was waved, the left from the wakes of the vee bottoms. In Super Stock class, an interesting Palmer Park shore- Super Cat class winner, AMSOIL, a 368 line in anticipation for the Douglas Marine Skater catamaran pow- storyline was unfolding, pitting a father

running of the 21st St. Clair River Classic APBA/OPA Offshore race on July 26 in St. Clair, MI. They were not to be disappointed as 42 registered boats in 10 various classes answered the call to the start line in quest of conquering the waters of the 4-mile race course under sunny skies and a very warm 86-degree temperature. 14

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ered by a pair of Teague Custom Marine Ilmor Chevy block 510-cid (780 hp each) engines ran a fast and flawless race. The AMSOIL crew consisted of owner/throttleman Bob Teague and Paul Whittier handling the driving chores. “On the calm water, we were hitting speeds of 130-140 mph on the straights,” Teague said. “There were holes out there

against son as competitors. FJ Propeller, a Doug Wright cat equipped with a pair of Mercury Optimax 200XS outboards, and owner/throttleman Gary Ballough with driver Gerry Chastelet, bested rival, Smart Marine—also a Doug Wright cat, with owner/driver Chris Schoenbohm and 18-year-old Taylor Chastelet on the

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Story and Photography by Paul

Kemiel

Bob Teague (far left) with his AMSOIL team pose following their win in Super Cat class.

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Sizzlin’ St. Clair Showdown

Class 2 competitors John Jackman and Chip Miller (right) won their first race together in Jackman’s 40' MTI catamaran (above).

Chris Carbone and Tyler Crockett won Class 4 in Crockett Rocket.

Class 3 winner Wazzup, driven by owner Ed “Smitty” Smith.

Kyle Miller and Jay Wholtman take the win in Class 6 with Woah Mama!

Class 5 victors E.J. Salamone and Ken Salamone in Rufstr Racing.

John Hughes and Patrick Kennedy were the Class 7 winners in Hangin N Bangin. 16

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Super Vee Lite winners Ron Umlandt and Art Lilly in LSB Racing.

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FLORIDA POWERBOAT CLUB presents the

GENERAL AGENDA TWO Departure Days: Wednesday, Nov 11th, 2015 Thursday, Nov 12th, 2015 Departure times: North Miami Haulover: 9:30 am South Miami Coconut Grove: 10:30 am

November 10-16, 2015

Florida Powerboat Club’s signature poker run event, attracts a global roster of participants and features scenic cruising from Miami to Key West, through the beautiful Florida Keys. Checkpoints along the way take participants to Florida Keys’ hot spots in Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, and Bahia Honda. Paceboats provide navigation through the winding backwaters of the Florida Keys, allowing participants to enjoy the ride in more protected waters, with the final 40-mile leg offshore and into the protected Key West Harbor.

REGISTER, SUBSCRIBE, OR MORE INFO ONLINE AT: WWW.FLPOWERBOAT.COM or CALL 954-545-1414

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Eliminator client Joe Juliano hopes his 36' Speedster project will help relaunch this exceptional model.

The 700 SCis feature a Stage 3 Whipple upgrade kit.

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Story by Brett Bayne Photos by Todd Taylor

s a youth, Joe Juliano was a massive fan of go-fast boating, but never really needed to own his own boat. As a childhood friend of engine

builder John Pelkey’s son Ryan, there were always plenty of boats around Joe, and Lake Havasu became his second home. “John always had some of the nicest and fastest boats on the water, and he had access to customers’ boats that were powered by his engines,” Juliano says. “I was exposed from a very young age to that level of high performance, specifically on Havasu.” So profound was Juliano’s love for high performance motors and the go-fast lifestyle that as a teenager, he worked for Pelkey’s business through junior high and high school, eventually becoming director of sales and marketing when the firm was rechristened PFM Products. “I was trying to make a living out of what had become my passion,” he says. Although a professional career in boating wasn’t in the cards, Juliano never lost that passion. Today he is president/CEO of United Pacific, one of the largest independent operators of gas stations and convenience stores in the United States, based in Gardena, CA. The first boat he owned outright was an Eliminator 27' Daytona, a purchase that began his long and loyal bond with the Mira Loma, CA-based boatbuilder. Indeed, he was so enamored with the hull that in 2011, he began building a 27' Speedster. “This was during a period when Eliminator was going through some tough times,” he says. “Bob and I developed a close relationship that continues to this day—almost like a father-son duo,” he chuckles. The sometimes rough water of Lake Havasu ultimately inspired Juliano to consider moving up to a larger boat. “On busy weekends, you can get beaten up pretty badly out there,” he says. “I’d had my eye on a 36' Eliminator with a full canopy—my hope was to buy it,

A view of the cockpit reveals the savvy layout of gauges and controls.

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Eliminator

Juliano tears through Lake Havasu on a recent weekend with the Speedster.

cut the top off and transform it into a Speedster.” Then, in 2014, after spotting a 36' and watching the price gradually drop over a couple of years, his dream became a reality. According to Juliano, the boat—a 2007 model—had reportedly been purchased originally by an executive at RE/MAX Realty. “I heard he had some health issues that made it difficult for him to get in and out of the boat, so he basically unloaded it to MarineMax, where it just sat until finally a buddy of mine got a great deal on it. Then he sold it to me.” The boat was in terrific shape. By the time Juliano acquired the title, the 36' only had about 40 hours on it. “It was like a new boat that had spent a lot of time on the trailer,” he says. “I figured that if I’m going to have the ultimate boat on Lake Havasu, it might as well be a 36' Speedster. Eliminator built five or six of them beginning in 2006, but the market has largely forgotten about that boat. The time has come for a rebirth of the 36' Speedster.” In February of this year, hoping to have the boat ready by Desert Storm, Juliano had Eliminator start work on a makeover of the boat, which involved cutting the top off

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The Eliminator’s makeover required two employees working full time for a lengthy period of time. The gelcoat work alone involved three cycles of prepping, taping, painting— and a lot of sanding work. “It looks like it just came out of the mold, but it didn’t,” says Juliano. The complete restoration lasted from February to May 2015.

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Eliminator to reconfigure the canopy, de-rigging, prepping for new gelcoat, removing interior, taping and wrapping. “The gelcoat process was remarkable,” Juliano says. “It required two guys working full time for a lengthy period of time.” Although the boat did not get finished in time for Desert Storm (it was completed in May), the extra build time paid off in the long run. “It looks like it just came out of the mold, but it didn’t,” says Juliano. “Basically, it took three cycles of prepping, taping and painting—and a lot of sanding work. It took longer than I would have liked, but it was worth the wait.” The Speedster’s powerplant features a pair of Mercury 700 SCis coupled to NXT drives. The motor has been upgraded with Whipple Industries’ Stage 3 kits, which provides more boost and raises the rev limiter from the factory 5,350

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up to 6,000 rpm. “We changed the pulley on the supercharger and traded the air filter for a billet spark arrestor, so it flows more air to the supercharger. It also involved re-plumbing the intercooler—we grab higher volume, cooler water from the inlet to run through the intercooler,” he explains. Meanwhile, the NXT drives were massaged by Brad Stewart of E-Ticket Performance Boats (Lake Havasu, AZ). “He’s a genius at that kind of stuff,” Juliano says. “The skegs were made longer and deeper, and Brad blueprinted the lower units on the drives. It made a huge difference!” With the kits installed, Juliano estimates that total horsepower should be somewhere between 825 to 850 on each side. He reports a top speed around 150 mph using 36"-pitch five-blade Hering cleavers. When the weather cools down,

he swaps those out for a 37" or 38". “The boat’s really light, so the powerto-weight ratio helps explain why 700s are pushing the boat to those kinds of speeds,” he says. “The boat weighs about 9,300 pounds. By contrast, some of Eliminator’s 36' race boats weighed more than 11,000 pounds.” Juliano says he does not typically run the boat at WOT, as his children (Jared, 7, and Ally, 6) are often in the Speedster. “We just like to cruise,” he says. “I don’t run much over 100 when I have other people in the boat. If I want to go and make a pass, I’ll kick everybody out of the boat, grab the safety gear and run it by myself.”

The interior was completely redone at Eliminator Boats. The results are beyond remarkable.

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BOYNE To Run Boyne City, MI, may be tiny, but its charity poker run is colossal entertainment.

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Photos by Pete

John and Julie Tokar in their SV-43 Outerlimits, Kahuna.

Josh Emmick in his 38' Powerquest.

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Boden

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f you’ve never heard of Boyne City, MI, join the club. It’s a tiny city located

about 60 miles north of Traverse City and 60 miles south of the famous Mackinaw Bridge (which connects Michigan to its Upper Peninsula). Located on the southeastern end of Lake Charlevoix—itself adjacent to Lake Michigan—Boyne City home of the Boyne Mountain Resort ski lodge during the winter. But during the summer, it’s a hub for an entirely different kind of fun, especially in July, for the launch of the annual Boyne Thunder Poker Run. During the summer months, this ski resort transforms into a powerboat playground, with a waterfront park with dockage for plenty of boats, motor homes, and areas for fuel, ramps and service. Visitors to the area can enjoy scenic views, enhanced by a skistyle chairlift that continues to provide transportation to the top of the mountain to the Boyne Mountain Resort. It’s a spectacular and stunning ride that you won’t soon forget. Now in its 12th year, Boyne Thunder is a charity event that raises money for two main groups: Camp Quality, a camp for children with cancer, and Challenge Mountain, a local non-profit organization dedicated to enriching and improving lives for the mentally and physically challenged through outdoor recreation. Co-organizer Bob Mathers, owner of Bob Mathers Ford in Boyne City, became active in the poker run in its second year, raising money for Camp Quality. Mathers, owner of a 38' PowerQuest, modestly describes his role as “one of the worker bees,” saying that a core group of 12-15 volunteer members are the real nucleus to helping to make the event a success. “This used to be a two-day program,” he explains, “but it has been lengthened so that people from out of [Continues on page 61] S P E E D B O A T | September 2015

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Boyne Thunder Poker Run

Above: Mick Rissin’s 41’ Velocity. Above right: Tracy Nemecek’s 47' Nor-Tech. Right: Jeremy Finney’s Elminator Daytona.

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Boyne Thunder Poker Run Todd Chartier’s Nor-Tech triple outboard-powered center console.

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John Frohlich’s 47' Apache.

Steve Haddadd’s 33' Baja Outlaw.

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The Popeye’s team of Bill Sirois, Stan Ware, Al Copeland, with his wife, Patty, and Bob Idoni celebrate their victory in the Superboat class at the 1985 Pt. Pleasant Beach, NJ, race.

Living Large S ting Saluting Sal ng the e offshore race triumphs of Al Copeland.

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l Copeland lived larger than life, and as a result, his end came more quickly and suddenly than imaginable to any-

one who happened to brush with his far-flung and hyper-accelerated universe. Copeland, 64, denied the outcome to the end, but he’d have appreciated the irony: the grandest thinker in the bunch brought down by an opponent whose very name declared its opposite scale: small cell neuroepithelial, or Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), a rare form of skin cancer that first appeared under Copeland’s ear as a blemish, then a small pea, and finally could no longer be ignored. [Text continues on p page 62]

by Brett Bayne Photography by Paul Kemiel

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#13 Popeye’s/Diet Coke, a 50' Cougar cat powered by four 950-hp Lightning engines hooked up to Arneson drives, in 1990 at Grand Haven, MI. speedboat.com

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The Popeye’s/Diet Coke crew of Dick Clark, Al Copeland, Denny Heija and Richie Powers celebrate their Superboat class victory in 1988 at Traverse City, Michigan, above.

Superboat Popeye’s/Diet Coke christening party for the new 50' Goetz catamaran in 1987 at Atlantic City, NJ, with Al Copeland, Bill Sirois and Rocky Aoki.

Throttleman Bill Sirois visits with Rocky Aoki at the christening in Atlantic City, NJ. speedboat.com

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Living Large

Above left: The Popeye’s team of Bob Idoni, Al Copeland, and actor Chuck Norris in 1990 at Grand Haven, MI. Above right: Al Copeland poses on his 46' Skater turbine powered cat in 1997 at Biloxi, MS. Left: The Popeye’s team of Bob Idoni, Stan Ware, actor Chuck Norris hoisting the 1st Place trophy and Al Copeland in 1990 in Long Beach, CA.

Al Copeland’s 46' Skater catamaran lights up the turbines with a top speed of 158 mph in 1997 at Biloxi, MS.

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Subscribe & Save! It’s the fastest way to get your go-fast fix! One year, 8 issues for $34 delivered to your door. Best Bargain add a T-shirt for $44.95. Slight extra charge for 2XL and bigger t-shirt sizes.

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7/9/15 1:53 PM


Living Large

Popeye’s Pepsi Challenger, a 50’ Cougar aluminum cat powered by four 700-hp MerCruiser engines flies over the Pacific Ocean in 1983 at Newport Beach, CA. Left: Actress Bo Derek poses for the camera with Al Copeland in 1984 at the APBA Offshore race in Ventura, CA. Below: Popeye’s Pepsi Challenger, a 50' Cougar aluminum cat powered by four 700-hp (1,984-cid each) MerCruiser engines and attached Mercury surface drives at APBA Offshore race in 1983 at Newport Beach, CA.

Below: Al Copeland waves to the crowd while returning back to the wet pits with Bill Sirois and Stan Ware after winning in the Superboat class in Popeye’s with a 60.39 mph average in 6- to 8-foot waves on Lake Michigan at the 1985 race in Grand Haven, MI.

Above: Popeye’s Pepsi Challenger, a 41' Cougar cat powered by two 700-hp (994cid) each MerCruiser inboards in 1983 at Detroit.

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speedboat.com

8/6/15 10:26 AM


LET IT SHINE by Brett Bayne

Speedboat Tests Jet Renu’s Line of Cleaners, Waxes and Degreasers.

New for 2015: Jet Renu’s three-step restoration, ideal for oxydized fiberglass. C1 is a cleaner compound; C2 is a polish for surface imperfections; and C3 (above right) is a unique sealer and final finisher. The three steps offer a cross-linked system of durability.

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cleaner proved flawless in removing grime and sticky, caked-on crud from virtually every surface we tried it on. It’s one of the most versatile cleaning products we’ve ever tried, adept at ridding surfaces of tough grime stains created by exhaust. It also works extremely well on vinyl and leather seats. Below are the products we used and the ideal usage for each. They’ll keep your toys sparkling, whether they’re jetboats, 50-foot catamarans or anything in between.

K

eeping your ride spic with ease, and left a sparkling luster. It’s and span, and warding off little wonder that Jet Renu has earned its

the elements as a preventative measure, is an ongoing challenge for every boater. This month, the staff of Speedboat put some cleaning products to the test—and brought in a professional detailer to do the job. To conduct the test, we gathered the full line of products made and distributed by Jet Renu. Based in Corona, CA, with a distribution warehouse in San Jose, Jet Renu has nearly 25 years of experience with advanced product research and development, focusing on the marine and automotive aftermarket industries. Their cleaners and polishers, designed to recondition your boat or other vehicle, consist largely of color-branded products like Blue, Pink, Green, Red, Purple, Yellow and Tan. Each of them is designed to be effective in one particular area, but many of Jet Renu’s products share the same general properties: they clean, they make surfaces sparkle, they spray on and wipe off, are biodegradable, etc. Although Jet Renu has focused on reaching the personal watercraft market, the fact is that their lineup is just as effective on performance boats. For our test, we asked our detailer, Kenny Dunlop of Arizona Hydro Clean to take his clients’ dirtiest, dustiest, most waterspot laden craft and make them sparkle. That’s just what he did—and the good news is, Jet Renu’s products deliver on the promise of their claims. Every cleaner or polish we applied to the surface of our choice—fiberglass, plastic, glass, aluminum, even rubber—went on and wiped off speedboat.com

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reputation as one of the leading manufacturers in the industry of cleaning and maintenance products. And it’s worthy of noting that their product lineup is capable of bringing out a shine in a variety of surfaces we didn’t even apply it to, including porcelain, acrylic and wood. Two of the most impressive in Jet Renu’s lineup are Pink Plus (an enhanced version of the Pink quick-shine wax that adds a water-spot remover) and Tan, designed to keep a boat’s gelcoat looking beautiful. Meanwhile, Green

Tan (Gel Coat Cleaner Wax)—The ultimate gelcoat cleaner and wax, enriched with various grades of fine cleaners, along with the high-quality polymers and Brazilian wax to create the ultimate UV protection for your vessel. Tan restores the sparkle to your oxidized vessel’s hull, but also brings back the true color and shine of your fiberglass gelcoat. Helps protect the investment of your vessel from Mother Nature. Available sizes: 8 oz., 32 oz.

Pink is an easy spray and shine wax that brings out the beauty of your boat while giving it that justwaxed look and feel.

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Let It Shine Blue (Plastic Polish)— Developed for all plastic, acrylic, fiberglass and any painted surface. Blue is excellent for minor scratch removal, protects instrument gauges and plastic windshields. It penetrates and protects against UV sun rays and removes minor imperfections. Available sizes: 8 oz.

Clear (Glass Cleaner)—A ready-to-use product, quick-acting, non-streaking cleaner that not only cleans glass, but is also effective on chrome, mirrors, plastic and porcelain, ceramic and metal. Clear is made using specialty surfactants as this product does not contain ammonia. It’s designed to enhance visibility and won’t leave streaks. Available sizes: 16 oz.

Green (All-Purpose Cleaner)—Green is formulated to cut through those tough grime stains on your painted finish caused by exhaust. The top quality formula rejuvenates while working great on vinyl seats, leather and removing scuff marks. Powers through built up dirt and grime, is safe for upholstery, and leaves a pleasant lemon-fresh scent. Available sizes: 16 oz., 32 oz., 1 gallon. Red

( Water Spot Remover)—Specialty water-spot remover that aggressively removes hardwater spots when coming out of the water and eliminates the risks of water stains embedding into any surface. Available sizes: 16 oz., 32 oz., 1 gallon.

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Clear (above) is a cool ready-to-use product that cleans glass and other surfaces. Renu Shield (left) is great for hardto-reach areas; it makes plastic look new again.

Pink (Quick Shine)—Pink is the ultimate spray and shine wax. Quick and easy, spray on, wipe-off application will bring out the beauty of your boat while giving it that just-waxed look and feel. Pink works very well on wet or dry surfaces. Available sizes: 16 oz., 32 oz., 1 gallon. Plus (Shine Plus Water-Spot Remover)—This two-in-one product has all of the benefits of the original Pink formula, but includes a special formula of Red, a specialty water-spot remover. Available sizes: 16 oz., 32 oz., 1 gallon.

Jet Renu’s Protector product cleans and protects rubber, ideal for your trailer’s tires.

Purple (Wash and Wax)—A premium, high-foaming soap fortified with 100% Brazilian carnauba wax. Purple cleans deep down into the gelcoat, lifts away caked-on dirt and grime while leaving behind a highgloss shine and a protective barrier from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Available sizes: 16 oz., 1 gallon.

Pink

Yellow (Degreaser)—Made with specialty surfactants and alkaline builders that won’t harm your engine’s metal components. Works on all inboard and outboard motors and rapidly cuts through heavy oil and grease with ease. Great on wheels and rims, and environmentally safe. Available sizes: 16 oz., 1 gallon. speedboat.com

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8/6/15 11:08 AM


Catalina

Ski Race

Aussie skier Jake Tegart wins the 67th annual competition.

Men’s Open Wiinner Jake Winner Jake Tegart Tegartt (left) Te (l was pulled by driver Mike Avila (above). Second overall was Todd Haig, driven by Randy Davis (below left); third overall was Ben Gully, driven by Sean Clancy (bottom left).

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Story by Alexi

Sahagian Photos by Ray Lee

A

merican skier Todd Haig, vying for a 13th

Superclass Winner Harvey Robinson of England was driven by Greg Bassam in a 21' Nordic, left.

title at the Catalina Ski Race in July, saw his hopes dashed in the final minutes of the race from Long Beach, CA, to Catalina Island and back. Haig, who famously took his 12th Men’s Open class victory last year in a split-second close shave against Australian skier Wayne Mawer and driver Mike Avila, stepped off in the final straightaway near the Queen Mary retired cruise ship, allowing Avila and skier Jake Tegart to snatch the victory. Haig was, as usual, pulled by driver Randy Davis, president of Lake Havasu City, AZ-based Nordic Boats, accompanied by observer Dennis Hall. For more than a decade, Haig has been the skier to beat; skier Peter Proctor was the winner in 2012 and 2010, pulled by Avila in a 42' Fountain. The race began typically enough, with boats pulling out of California’s Long Beach Harbor for the start of the annual Catalina Ski Race. For 67 consecutive years, water skiers from around the world have gathered for this 62-mile open-ocean dash from the fantail of the Queen Mary to Avalon Harbor on Catalina Island and back. [Text continues on page 80]

Sportsman Winner Brett Leonard of the U.S. was pulled by Colin Morris in a 21' Cyclone, right.

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Catalina Ski Race Masters Winner Lee Squire of the U.S. (far left) was pulled by driver Art Kaiser in his triple-engine vee bottom.

Intermediate Women Driver Pete Boyer pulled winner Alyssa Long of Australia in a 34' Shockwave, left.

Senior Men Winner Jack Lynch of England was pulled by driver Ryan Sharman in a 36' Apache, right.

Open Jet Winner Billy Mason of the U.S. (left) was pulled by driver Sean Mason in a 24' Scarab, below.

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Intermediate Men Wi Winner M Mack kH Harrison i off A Australia t was pulled by driver Glen Hatch in a 42' Fountain, above.

Over and Back Winners Kane and D Don K Kennedy d off th the U U.S. S were pulled by driver Ross Kennedy in a 38' Scarab, right.

Junior Boys Winner Cooper Robertson of Australia (left) was pulled by driver Rob Ettinger in a 42' Fountain.

Mixed Doubles Winners Lo L Lori rii Dunsmore an and Kurt Schoen of the U.S. were pulled by driver Darrell Nottke in a 38' Hustler.

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RESTORATION

Story by Brett

Bayne Photo by Kenny Dunlop

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When Nick Stoltz bought W his h Eliminator Daytona, he h didn’t intend to do a complete c overhaul on it. But B sometimes one thing leads l to another... speedboat.com

8/6/15 9:57 AM


Left: Stoltz enjoying his revamped ride on Lake Havasu.

W

hen Nick Stoltz was a teenager living in Idaho, his father and a friend drove him to California to

take a test drive in a 26-foot Larry Smith Scarab powered by a Paul Pfaff 572-c.i. engine. “I had never been in a high-performance boat in the ocean before, and what a rush!” he says of the 80-mph ride. “It was the coolest thing I had done up to that part of my life.” Thus began Stoltz’s passion for performance. Now employed as an oil-field electronic technician, the 36-year-old Stoltz has owned a variety of go-fast boats, including an 18’ Stevens flat bottom, 25’ Commander and a 28’ Velocity. When he found his current ride, a 2002 26’ Eliminator Daytona, he hadn’t intended to restore it. But after pulling the motor out to rebuild it, he got the idea to rework the engine compartment. “I just wasn’t satisfied with how it speedboat.com

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The Eliminator as Stoltz originally purchased it. SPEEDBOAT |

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Nick of Time Stoltz’s original setup featured a Whipplecharged engine. Right and below right: Elements of the fuel system.

Stoltz wound up removing the engine/BMax drivetrain. “The boat didn’t run as well as I wanted it to.” He set out to completely revamp the Eliminator.

“When it looked like we were going to miss Desert Storm, I decided to cap the entire boat. Then, of course, one thing led to another, and everything in the boat got replaced.” Left: An early stage of Stoltz’s restoration was removing the rubrail and completely capping the boat from stem to stern prior to repainting the boat.

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looked, and I had a couple of cylinders down on compression,” he says. After redoing the compartment, he still wasn’t satisfied by how it looked, and later ended up redoing it a second time. “Last year, I had Superior Paint cap the front and back of the boat,” he explains. “ When the cap job took longer than expected and it looked like we were going to miss Desert Storm, I decided to cap the entire boat. Then, of course, one thing led to another, and everything in the boat got replaced. Matt at Superior Paint told me that it would be about the same amount of work to redo the entire boat than to match the old colors. That’s when I decided to go with an entirely new look, inside and out.” While the boat was getting painted, Stoltz had a new engine built. “This time I wanted something bigger and would compete with the fastest single engine cats out there,” he says. “I had been watching Buck Stracener and Steve Tripp for a couple of years and decided that I also wanted to compete with them.” Stoltz planned for the new motor to deliver 1,300 to 1,400 horsepower, but wound up with a 1,600-hp package, built by

Many layers of paint were removed before clear coat and three stages of primer were applied.

5 Axis Marine. It’s a Chevy 548 Merlin III tall deck (4.530 bore, 4.250 stroke) with Crower crankshaft, 4.530 JE pistons, Crower billet 6.535 rods, Bullet cam, Dart Pro Race 360 CNC with Inconel exhaust valve and stainless intake, T&D rocker assembly, Bigstuff3 fuel injection with id2000 injectors and GM coil packs, ProCharger M5SC with billet impeller and CMI Big Tube Etop with custom tails done by full moon racing. The BMax drive sports a modified cavitation plate and custom CNC’d lower unit by 5 Axis Marine (1.18 to 1 gear ratio). It spins a 34”-pitch labbed propeller. Other work on the Eliminator included a revamped interior, courtesy of Lance at Full Moon Marine; the carpet includes a laser-etched panel with a personalized “Stoltz Racing” emblem, done by Mike at Laser Engraving Solutions. Dry tailpipes are coupled to CMI big-tube etop headers. As part of the restoration, the boat was taken to Eliminator Boats, where Bob Leach and his staff blueprinted the bottom. Many parts were fabricated in house, including a custom intake manifold billet, pulleys, cam pickups, engine brackets, accessory mounts, battery hold-downs, etc. All told, it took Stoltz more than two years to completely rebuild the Eliminator, but it was worth the effort. “I really value all of the support that we have gotten building it,” he says. “My wife, Johnelle, allowed me to build it and take time away from the family to do it. My father, Greg, was there every step of the way during the build. Bill Schultz spent crazy nights working on the machining. The guys at Eliminator really helped us with ideas and let us borrow props to test the boat. Brad Stewart at E-Ticket Boats helped with drive ideas. Even my competitor, Buck Stracener, drove all the way up from California to lend me a hand.” He also gives thanks to his kids, Aften and Ace, brother Tom and close friend Rob Flores. The boat is mostly used for poker runs and shootouts. Stoltz and his family enjoy spending time on Idaho’s American Falls Resevoir and Lake Havasu.

The bottom was taken to Eliminator Boats of Mira Loma, CA, for blueprinting. speedboat.com

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Nick of Time

The boat was completely repainted and all-new graphics were applied.

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After painting, hardware was gradually added to the hull, including an extension box and swim steps. Right: the new engine is lowered into the engine compartment.

Evolution of a dash: gauges are removed prior to painting, then re-added (above right). Finally, the steering wheel is installed (right).

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Nick of Time

Stoltz kept an impressive record of how the engine compartment changed, from the original setup through the stripped hull, painting phase and new engine installation. He actually modified the look of the engine compartment through two separate restorations. “I wasn’t satisfied with how the engine compartment looked from the beginning,” he says, “and I had a couple cylinders down on compression. After I got the engine compartment redone, I wasn’t happy with how it turned out, but put it back together anyways. I ended up redoing the engine compartment a second time to match the black and orange gelcoat.”

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Many parts were fabricated in house, including a custom intake manifold billet, pulleys, cam pickups, engine brackets, accessory mounts, battery holddowns, etc.

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Pirates of Lake Lanier John Woodruff and his team raise huge cash for kids at the Pirates of Lanier Poker Run.

Seven-year participant Pat McGrath in Driving Miss Donna, a Bluewater yacht.

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Photos by Jeff

Girardi and Lionel Hamilton

I

n the northern region of Georgia, a reservoir called Lake Lanier is fed by the

Major contributor Danielle Bloom and family in their 44' MTI Shooting Star.

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Chattahoochee and Chestatee rivers. The second-largest body of water in Georgia, it stretches out over 38,000 acres and 692 miles of shoreline along the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in northeast Georgia. The lake was created by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers between 1956 and 1959 following the construction of the Buford Dam. Lake Lanier provides flood protection, hydropower production, drinking water, fish and wildlife management—and, in July, it hosts the popular Pirates of Lanier charity poker run. This year’s event, held July 16-18, gathered several well-known industry luminaries, including Bill Pyburn, Scott Sjogren, Brad Schoenwald and 48' MTI Windship owner/driver John Woodruff, who helps raise cash for needy children as president of the nonprofit, charitable organization Lanier Partners of North Georgia. It was the seventh straight year for the event, and Mother Nature obliged by delivering four days of sunshine and satisfactory water levels. Among the highlights of this year’s poker run: elegant facilities at Lanier Islands Resort, coupled with sold-out dock slips, a whopping 288 poker run boat entries, 900+ poker hands sold and 7,247 oversized cards in envelopes opened (with only two paper cuts, according to organizers, although this has not been confirmed by an independent investigator). S P E E D B O A T | September 2015

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Pirates of Lanier

Model Tra’Shell Thompson was a passenger on Charge to the Underhills, a 35' Regal cruiser owned by Kwang Yi.

Event organizers Beau and Tiffiney Renfroe in their 33' Scarab, Dirty Money.

Freddy Fonzo in his 36' Baja, Family Cruiser.

Sponsors Dan and Kim Jape in their 36' Eliminator, Public Nuisance.

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Above left: Event organizers and major contributors Nancy Lee and John Woodruff in the MTI Windship. Above: Woodruff on the Pirate Casino stage Saturday evening. Left: Jarrett Gorlin (with event volunteer Dylan Floyd) wins the first and secondplace and second place poker hands.

Gary Goodell and crew in the 38' Cigarette Geico Caveman.

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In 2014, Woodruff told Speedboat that Lanier Partners nearly doubled their fundraising pot, leaping from $230,000 to $421,000. This year, early accounting indicated that the poker run would come close to equalling 2014’s record-setting fundraising, with around $400,000 raised, to benefit thousands of Georgia’s kids supporting Camp Sunshine, Camp Twin Lakes and the Boys and Girls Club of Hall County. The “Meet and Greet” at Gianni’s Italian Pizzeria Thursday evening was an inspired way start to the weekend, with about 400 people enjoying the Italian buffet throughout the evening, seeing old friends and meeting new ones over a cold beverage. Friday’s event, “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” was a truly massive raft-up beach party. Norman’s Landing provided food for all until it was gone. Bill Norman donated and served over 500 meals at the Island paradise in the middle of the lake. With 288 entrants on the water Saturday—along with many hundreds of local spectator boats and crowded docks—the day was truly exciting and enormously busy, with “pirates” behind every tree. Although the water was choppy in the middle of the day, everyone enjoyed the open card stop format, which allows the captains to proceed to the card stops in any order they wish. At lunchtime, groups of boats set their destination for all five of Lake Lanier’s waterside restaurants. More than 150 boats stopped at the Coast Guard Auxiliary station at Port Royale to have their boats inspected, making sure their vessels were properly equipped and met the required standards. (For their efforts, they received an additional poker card.) The most well-represented performance craft included Baja, Cigarette, Donzi, Eliminator, Formula, MTI and Skater; Fountain was the #1 mostattended hull, with 25+ boats. For the seventh year in a row, the poker run had no injuries, and no pirates were reported sinking other vessels, as this results in an immediate disqualification. Mark your calendars for next year’s poker run, July 14-17, 2016. S P E E D B O A T | September 2015

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Reader Rides By Brett

Bayne

33' Hallett

Greg Severson Upland, CA

S

everson’s 2006-model 335-T Hallett was the eighth out of the mold; it’s been a reliable and cherished

part of family for several years. “I love the boat,” he says. “It’s turnkey and it fires up every time I want it to.” Luckily, Severson got a chance to dial the boat in with Gary from Hallett behind the wheel. “He and I went prop testing one winter in perfect conditions—cool weather, with a little wind chop and nobody else on the boat. We got 94 mph on GPS and I said, Those props stay on!” Severson says the only negative is when a new passenger tries to crawl through the midcabin cuddy into the bowrider section. “I have to warn them to be careful, because it hurts like a mother when you hit your head on that thing!”

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28' Magic

Jason Centeno Rancho Cucamonga, CA

A local firefighter, Centeno and his family of six spent about 15 years using a 1977 20.5' Southwind jetboat—a fun little ride, but ultimately “very tight,” he says. Finally, tired of the lack of elbow room, the family traded up to this 2008 Magic Deck Boat…and the extra space was an instant hit. “We were done being crammed into everything,” Centeno says. Not only is the Magic much roomier, but the performance is top-notch. “This boat is so userfriendly, and the air entrapment hull loves the chop—it seems like the rougher the water, the smoother that boat rides. We were really getting beat to hell in that little jetboat all the time.” The boat features full hydraulic dual-ram steering, as well as 2-foot hydraulic trim tabs on the back to keep things flat. “We did everything hydraulic just to make things easier cause we were tortured for so many years,” Centeno says. “We wanted some niceties!” The boat is powered by a 525 with Bravo drive; Bob Teague did the exhaust and put a cam in it as well. Other creature comforts include ample storage and a freshwater sink in the side-by-side bulkheads.

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SPEEDBOAT |

July 2015

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40' Fountain Tom Liddell Philadelphia, PA

The owner of a direct-mail equipment business, Liddell purchased this 1988 12-Meter new from Fountain. It’s an exceptionally light hull for a 40-footer, because Reggie custom-built it with balsa stringers in the front. The boat still sports its original #3 drives, although the engines have since been swapped out for two 850-hp (632-c.i.) motors. That upgrade, combined with the light hull, means a top speed in the low 90s. Moreover, handling and performance are “awesome,” according to Liddell. “I love it. I’m so used to it handling the rough water really well.” Liddell, who also owns a center-console fishing boat, attends local poker runs like Rock the Bay and Thunder in the City, and enjoys boating in the Chesapeake Bay and South Jersey areas.

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Boyne to Run [Continued from page 27] state can incorporate a 10-day vacation to come up here and enjoy our waters.” The event now starts on Thursday, with an unofficial fun run to Bay Harbor in Petoskey, MI for lunch; this year, around 50 boats made the trek. “We had lunch, took it easy, met new people and BS’d with the old people,” Mathers says. “After coming back to town, everybody took the chairlift to the top of the mountain for a big welcoming party at the resort. It’s great, because people from out of the region have never been on a chair lift before. And the majority of the people stay up there, because we have limited lodging in Boyne City.” On Friday, the official registration commences, and boats are put into position for the poker run. In short order, the street party begins to come together, one of Mathers’ main big responsibilities. “We have performance boats all through the streets,” he says. “We use word of mouth and social media to get the word out, and people bring their classic cars and hot rods as well. Every Friday night through the summer, we have bands playing on every corner as people wander around. The public streets are a venue unto themselves. Then, when we have the Boyne Thunder run, it really explodes into a kind of ballistic fun.” Saturday’s poker run is a 150-mile excursion that starts on Lake Charlevoix. The route takes the boats onto Lake Michigan, where they head south for card stops at Northport and Elk Rapids. Then it’s back to Charlevoix Marina for lunch in downtown Charlevoix, after which the run continues with card stops in Harbor Springs and Bay Harbor, then back to Charlevoix for the final card stop at Horton Bay. The grand finale is an elaborate reception at beautiful Sommerset Pointe Yacht Club & Marina in Boyne City. Since its inception, Boyne Thunder has raised more than $300,000 for Camp Quality and it has become an important part of the camp’s success. For more information about Boyne Thunder, please visit boynethunder.com. speedboat.com

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Living Large [Continued from page 32] Between rounds of a typical mile-asecond business trip, Copeland sought out an emergency room on the road, and was diagnosed with a serious staph infection. But the diagnosis didn’t play right to Copeland, and when he stumbled inexplicably a few days later, a biopsy only confirmed what he already sensed. Eight months after the pea appeared, Copeland, six-time offshore national champion, two-time world champion, and owner of the supremely challenging Miami to New York endurance record (20 hours, 42 minutes, 1,142 miles), was gone. His racing success ran in lockstep with a business career that epitomized the American dream. Copeland’s father left shortly after he was born. The family struggled, but as now, there was no shortage of family ambition. Al dropped out of high school at 16 and bought a doughnut franchise from his brother. It took a few years, but ultimately Copeland figured out how to bottle the bravado and harness his ceaseless optimism. He founded Popeye’s Chicken in 1972, and had more than 750 restaurants running by the early 1980s. A roller coaster ride followed. Copeland got into trouble after acquir ing the 1,200-unit Church’s Chicken operation, and was $400 million in debt by 1991. Copeland’s lucrative recipe contracts ultimately saved him, and today Al Copeland Investments encompasses 30 restaurants, comedy clubs, and hotels. Even when his business was spiraling downward, Copeland remained committed to adventure—which more often than not meant going as fast as some machine or another would take him, whether boat, motorcycle, car, or snowmobile. “It was my job for a very long time to help build and ride in whatever Al was driving at the time,” said Scott Barnhart, a Kentucky-born gearhead who describes his job with Copeland through the years as ‘toykeeper.’ “In all the years I knew him, he knew only one speed—all out, all the time, in everything he drove. He wasn’t much for warming up.” [Continues on page 64]

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Living Large

[Continued from page 62]

Copeland launched his offshore racing career in the early 1980s, setting up the home base for his Popeye’s offshore team in New Orleans, where he would pilot a variety of boats until he retired from the sport in 1990. Most famously, he drove a 39’8” Cigarette deep-vee (1982); a pair of Cougar cats, including a 41’ and a 50’ (1983-1990) and a 50’ Goetz composite cat (1987). During this time, photographer Paul Kemiel was covering the offshore circuit very closely, and got to know Copeland well enough to be invited onto his private yacht, the Cajun Princess, for lunch during race weekends. “At Biloxi, his valet would constantly be at our side as we enjoyed a glass of wine. Our glasses

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were never empty.” As Kemiel recalls, the wildly successful restaurateur always did things in grand style. “He did not start out small and work his way up,” Kemiel says. “He had the pockets to get the best equipment at the moment going into the offshore world, and of course, an ever-increasing spending budget as he acquired bigger and faster boats. He always had the flair to spend the money to get the best that he could.” After a 1984 race in California attended by actress Bo Derek, Kemiel made what he describes as the biggest faux pas of his publishing career. “I’d sold some images of Al and Bo to a men’s magazine that I’d thought was an upscale,

Esquire-type = publication,” he says. The magazine turned out to be a raunchy skin title called Gent—nothing classy about it. “After it was published, and I saw what kind of magazine it was, I was devastated,” Kemiel continues. “Later, in the spring, I went to my first scheduled race in Cape Coral, FL, and after the driver’s meeting, Al came up to me, seething. ‘What the f— are you doing?’ he bellowed. ‘I got word from one of my franchise owners that you sold images of me to that rag.’ “Of course I immediately apologized and said it was my fault for not checking out the publication ahead of time and making sure that it was a classy magazine. He reamed me out—it was a pretty public scene, and I was embarrassed. I apologized profusely, and he said, ‘Well, I hope you don’t get a call from John Derek (Bo’s then-husband), because if he gets wind of it, there might be some litigation.’ After reaming me out, he said, ‘What are you doing for lunch?’ I said, ‘Nothing,’ and he said, ‘Come join me on the boat for lunch.’ And it was all over. That was one of the most embarrassing moments of my entire career, but as it turned out, you can see how nice a gentleman he was, and how forgiving. I really learned a lesson there.” Two years after retiring from boat racing in 1990, Copeland—46 years old at the time—was snowmobiling in Lake Tahoe, CA, when he hit a bump and was thrown off the trail and into some trees. The impact broke two bones in Copeland’s left arm and one in his left thigh. Covered in snow, his two sons (Chris and Al Jr.) helped dig him out, after which he was hospitalized and underwent surgery. Although he would no longer race boats, he continued to sponsor and campaign a raceboat. As late as 1997, he was attending races with his personal pleasure boat, a 46’ Skater turbine-powered cat, driven by his son, Al Jr. It wasn’t until December 2007 that Copeland started treatment for the malignant tumor that was discovered on his salivary glands. While seeking experimental treatments in Germany, he died in Munich on March 23, 2008, at the age of 64.

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Brett’s SHE’S A BEAUTY! Smokin’ 20' Schiada

ALSO: • Battle in Burley • Rayson Resto

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RESTORATION

Story by Brett

Bayne

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With a little help from his friends—and Shockwave Custom Boats—Frank Folkes transforms his Rayson Craft into something truly sublime. speedboat.com

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Folkes tested the geometry and built pillow blocks and cavitation hardware for the jet setup.

Above: Original 455 Olds. Right: Getting the hook out and fabricating and installing the wash plate.

F

rank Folkes was 16 years old when he started working for Hardin Marine, and a year older when he first met Rayson craft founder Rudy Ramos. He’d been boat-

The transom was strengthened to accommodate cavitation hardware.

ing on local lakes and rivers in California since he was a kid, and he knew he was destined to own Rayson one day. Through the years, Folkes has met numerous go-fast gurus in the industry, both at Hardin and at Clay Smith Cams, where he also worked as a youth. “Some of them I still have contact with,” he declares. Now 49 and still living in Orange County, Folkes has been an iron worker for nearly 30 years. He’s owned three boats in his life: a 1977 Challenger, a 1990 Advantage and, inevitably, a 1974 20GN Rayson Craft. “I used to talk with Rudy occasionally,” Folkes says. “Then, in 2003, I was at his shop and he told me about this one for sale.” speedboat.com

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Folkes Hero

Shockwave Custom Boats repainted the hull using pearl.

The 10Âş polished Casale V-drive (1.22 gears, 1 1/8 output shaft) is installed. Folkes used T-Iron on the stringers for full bearing motor mounts.

Right: Folkes had to cut out the center of the trailer for the shaft and to reinforce for structural stability.

Above left: Folkes elected to keep the original throughtransom exhaust because it’s so quiet. Above: a 3/2 multiplier was built to make the down pedal easier. Far left: He used Type 3 hard anodizing for durability. Left: The Clay Smith C-306-8-B camshaft.

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The big-block Chevy motor features a TH400 transmission with high-volume pans.

“I decided to redo the trailer after the boat was finished,” Folkes says. “Poor timing!”

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Ramos told Folkes that he’d built three Raysons as jet boats— one with a Ford, one with a Chevy and the last with an Olds motor. They’d been sent to Northern California, where Folkes had planned to visit soon. “I decided to go and take a look at one of them, and I bought it,” he recalls. The boat ran well as a jet, but Folkes felt that it needed more speed. Even so, “I wasn’t willing to build a blown motor for it that the wife and kids couldn’t drive,” he says. “The hull was really designed to be a V-drive anyway. So after running it for a few years, I decided it was time for a change.” Folkes began stripping the boat and gathering the hardware he would need for the makeover. “I really had no intention of doing a complete restoration at the time. But as anyone who has done this knows, the farther you get into it, the more things need to be replaced.” Folkes took the boat to Shockwave Custom Boats of Corona, CA, for the body and paint work. Meanwhile, George at Clay Smith Cams helped choose the new engine combination, and Crabtree Industries of Orange performed machine work on the hardware. Virtually every other part of the restoration was done by Folkes himself. “I have never rigged a V-drive before, and I think I made every mistake possible,” he chuckles. “Many times, I would install a completed piece, only to realize that I had to take it out again. I used to laugh at the stories of these guys spending four years or so doing their builds, but that is what it took me. It’s just way too much work doing it yourself in your spare time.” Folkes built a low-compression single-carb pump gas motor, as he was in pursuit of something simple that everyone could

Folkes reconfigured the boat with four seats. “It’s a bit crowded, but it gets the job done,” he says.

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Folkes Hero The boat’s maiden voyage in Parker, AZ.

Folkes made the driver’s seat adjustable so that his 6'2" son and 5'1" daughter could drive.

Cruising around near Blythe, CA.

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Above: “I had to get pretty creative on the cavitation plates, since I wanted to keep the through-transom exhaust,” Folkes says. “I didn’t want it to look too crowded.” Below: The final product, following its extensive four-year makeover.

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drive—and that’s why he opted for a turbo 400 transmission. “I love the way it turns,” he says, adding that acceleration is also top-notch. “Hit the left pedal, plant the bow eye and accelerate out.” He reports a top speed in the low 70-mph range, but is still tinkering with gear/prop combos. Engine specs: Chevy 461, GM steel crank, SRP pistons, Carillo rods, Clay Smith 306-8 solid camshaft, Dart Iron Eagle heads, roller rockers, Weiand Stealth intake, Holley 850 carb, Drake exhaust, Magneto ignition, Dooley oil pan and Olsen cooler. Folkes uses the boat mostly for skiing, wakeboarding and just cruising around the Colorado River near Blythe.

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Beasts of Three days of the fastest inboard circle racing in the United States.

Burley

Shoeing his own GN 820 machine, Dirk Olsen, shows off his underwater hardware here on Turn One. He finished second overall for the weekend behind Hiebert.

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Photos by Mark

GN

Heath Hiebert (near lane) dominated the we weekend eek eken k in GN class, taking the class win and the Faulkner Memorial Trophy. Also shown are Chuck Sousamian in GN22 and Tyler Roth in GN92.

Chuck Sousamian, following the exact path of Olsen’s boat in Turn One, gets some air time before heading down the backstretch in GN 22.

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T

McLaughlin

he fastest inboard circle boats descended on Burley, ID, for

the Burley Regatta, with some insane competition. GN Class had an impressive turnout of over 10 boats. Heath Hiebert was on a mission, dominating all weekend in the class once again. Not only did he take the class win trophy, but also snared the coveted Faulkner Memorial Trophy for first place in the fastest times all weekend. One of the race’s highlights was the 6-Litre capsuled machines, direct from Australia, puting on quite a show—two of them had just arrived in the U.S. a few weeks before the race. Now with a class of four, these NASCAR-style motor-driven machines were the talk of the town; three of the four drivers were from Down Under also, with plans to stay in the USA until after the Long Beach race. Overall winner Chris Pugsley, driving #123 Oxygen Thief, took the overall win. In Cracker Box, the family-owned P94 High Maintenance took home the overall win in the class, with driver Jeffrey Doidge and rider Donald Doidge accepting for Chuck and Jeannie Doidge. Mike Schatz drove the P92 Cracker to a second-place finish for the weekend, with Mike driving and Cole Noble riding. Comp Jet had a full field for the first time in years, with Tom Bandy leading the field. The Jack McClureowned jet boat was on a mission to take the overall win in the class, and also took home the Idaho Cup trophy for the second-most points accumulated over the weekend of racing for consistent lap speeds. S P E E D B O A T | September 2015

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Beasts of Burley Pro Stock T N Ty Newton, t d doing i double duty with the Faulkner-owned Pro Stock machine Canary Pride, took the PS70 to the title.

GPS GPS 95 class featured Paul Visser (near ar lane) in his beautifully painted PS 21 ahead of Tom Moore’s PS 138 boat here. But by the end of the weekend, Tom had overtaken the lead for the title and the overall trophy.

2.5-Liter 2.5 litre capsuled boat S36, driven by Austin Eacret, drives by the crowd for the overall win in the class.

1-Liter Stan and Ke Ken Masel’s pink Y70 machine overpowered everyone else all weekend with veteran H1 driver Jeff Bernard behind the wheel. 74

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Cracker Box The family-owned P 94 boat, High Maintenance, took home the overall win in Cracker Box, with driver Jeffrey Doidge amd rider Donald Doidge accepting the first place trophy for Chuck and Jeannie Doidge’s cracker (right).

Mike Schatz (left, with his daughters) finished second overall in Cracker Box in P92 with Mike driving and Cole Noble riding.

6-Liter Th The he A Aussies ussies are coming! Chris Pugsley, driving the Oxygen Thief #123 to the overall win in 6-Liter class...

...while #87 (right), driven by Jeremiah McCorkle, was the lone driver not from Oz. The Roo’d Awakening boat won a heat, but finished 4th overall . speedboat.com

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Beasts of Burley Comp Jet Comp Jet boats had a full field, with Tom Bandy leading the pack. The Jack McClureowned jetboat took the overall win in the class, as well as the Idaho Cup trophy.

K Racing Overall class winner Duff Daily (below) drove the Mike Stock-owned El Cid K Boat. Daily dominated each time he came out in his K-999 machine. Right: Chris Pauli drove the K-500 to a secondplace overall trophy in the K Boat field.

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Super Stock Ty Newton (below), driving the other yellow flatty, the Wild Child, takes the win in Super Stock. Right: Tyler Roth finished a very respectable second place overall in the class, shoeing Sid Rennell’s SS96.

Ray Pauli’s SS-501 had a bit of a problem off the start of this heat. Veteran driver Hal Jones, not making the trip, put Jeff McMahon in the driver’s seat. McMahon turned the boat over before Turn One. Both driver and boat ended up in good shape with just minor scratches and bruises.

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She’s a

BEAUTY Jon Buford’s Schiada is a retro slice of pure performance heaven.

Photos by Brett

Bayne

S

oon to be turning 70 years young, John Buford of Orange, CA, remembers fun times on the Colorado River in Parker, AZ, as a youth. “That’s when the first Mandellas came out, and flatbottoms were all the rage,” he says. “As a kid, I was determined to have a V-drive. And, well, I worked my way through the years and wound up buying this 1978 20’ Schiada about 20 years ago, and I’ve loved it ever since.” Now retired, Buford ran his own woodworking business in Anaheim, CA, for many years; he uses the boat primarily on Lake Havasu. The boat’s engine, built by Steve Harding of Snyder Motorsports, consists of a GM four-bolt Mark V block with GM forged steel crank, Carillo rods, Mallory valves, Holley Intake manifold, steel billet heavy-duty flywheel, 14-quart Dooley oil pan, Holley 850 carbs, LS400 three-speed transmission and Gale Banks twin turbo system, all contributing to an estimated 800 total horsepower. 78

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Catalina Ski Race [Continued from page 43]

Formula II Outboard

Winner Martie Wells was pulled by driver Carl Goldsmith in a 21' Nordic.

This year’s competition featured the starting grid consisted of 60 teams with skiers ranging in age from 70+ to justturned teenagers. They race in a variety of classes, including Men’s Open, Women’s Open, Intermediate (Men and Women), Senior (Men and Women), Expert, Masters, Sportsman, Superclass, Novice, Junior Boys, Mixed Doubles, Formula I and II, and Open Day Cruiser. Racers practice for weeks leading up to the race, hoping for a shot at a class victory or even a record, and like any race, there are always mishaps, close calls and plenty of dashed dreams along with the glory. This year, an engine in winner Mike Avila’s boat wouldn’t start close to the beginning of the race; he needed to quickly acquire a new starter and install it in mere minutes in order to compete. The race is not just about speed and prestige—it’s equally about endurance and teamwork among every single player. Skiers must ski behind ropes as long as 240 feet long, skipping over swells and rollers and dodging jellyfish, whales and other flotsam along the way. Davis and Avila are traditionally the first competitors to pull out in front, and this year’s race was no different, as they jockeyed for the lead while negotiating their way through wakes from fishing boats. One boat will hit a roller and slow down, then the other will follow

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suit, and the action becomes a kind of derby to the island and back, maximizing strategies. This year, the drivers seemed to be averaging 85-88 mph for much of the race—about 7-10 mph faster than is typical, as the water appeared mostly flat in some sections, while still tricky overall. The pair managed to avoid any mishaps until the final turn before their way through conditions and obstacles, when Haig lost control and stepped off his ski while Davis and Avila were neck and neck. The race typically ends with a grand finale drag race for the last mile, where the drivers ramp up their speeds to the finish. But this year, after Haig’s mishap, Avila’s team played it safe, opting not to risk losing his own skier, and completed the competition without the usual no-holds-barred show for the spectators. That’s a common tactic in the water-ski racing community: Don’t wear out your skiers any more than you have to. Avila and skier Tegart, along with observer Mike Schneider, took the checkered flag in Men’s Open with a final time of 45 minutes, 31 seconds. Randy Davis, with skier Haig and observer Dennis Hall, finished second overall with a time of 46 minutes, 45 seconds; rounding out third place overall and in Men’s Open were driver Sean Clancy, observer Justin Pick and skier Ben Jully of Australia at 47 minutes, 23 seconds.

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Sizzlin’ St. Clair [Continued from page 14] throttles. In the end, father showed best with the victory in FJ Propeller. LSB Racing (named for Lilly Sport Boats), an Extreme deep vee hull with Brit Lilly driving and Ron Umlandt on the throttles was victorious in the Super Vee Lite class. On hand to witness the race win, was distinguished veteran throttleman Art Lilly, father was all smiles and proud of his son’s achievement. A very promising career awaits to continue the tradition in the Lilly family. In class 2, a new competitor has hit the scene in the likes of John Jackman, owner/driver of Team 27, along with Chip Miller, handling the gas sticks in a MTI cat. This was Jackman’s maiden entry into offshore society and he earned his first victory. John is no stranger to powerboat racing speed as he had experience with high performance boats and participated in various Poker Run competitions. Wazzup, a Fountain deep vee driven by owner Ed “Smitty” Smith and throttled by Anthony Smith claimed the win in class 3. Mr. Smith is the presiding president of OPA Offshore (Offshore Powerboat Association) racing series. Crockett Rocket, a Joker deep-vee hull with crew of owner/throttleman Tyler Crockett and newly appointed driver Chris Carbone, blasted into the lead and never looked back to score another victory in class 4. Tyler’s long time friend and veteran driver, George Eisenhart recently retired. In class 5, Rufstar Racing, a Superboat vee hull, with the team of driver EJ Salamone, and Ken Salamone on throttles. This duo is on a hot streak and continued their dominance and consistency with their fourth consecutive race victory. Woah Mama, a Lorequin vee hull, was the winner in class 6, with Kyle Miller driving and Jay Wholtman on throttles. Winning in Class 7 was Hangin N Bangin, a Redline vee hull, with driver/ throttleman, John Hughes and navigator Patrick Kennedy.

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