Key West, November, 2009, MYSTIC Powerboats scores a massive 1-2-3 victory and captures a huge World Championship Title in the most prestigious class of Offshore Racing, the 2009 Key West World Championships. The Miss Geico/AMF and the Aqua-Mania Race Teams, ran toe-to-toe all season, and were poised to do battle in Key West. But, the World Championship, title went to Mark Granet and Scott Begovich and their 50’ - C5000R MYSTIC Turbine Cat, Miss Geico, at the end of the day.
The pre-race tension surrounding the MYSTIC dominance could be felt in the air. Since John Haggin owner of the AMF/Miss Geico team, made an early season boat switch to a MYSTIC; the stakes had been raised. Both Aqua-Mania and Miss Geico were preaching “Key West superiority” from their extensive pre-race testing. The Aqua-Mania crown, at the National Championships in Clearwater, just weeks before; poised the pair for a rematch; in the Turbine Extreme Class. An event that would steal the Key West show. But on this day; a third, sleek, teardrop shaped speed machine had come to crash the “MYSTIC Turbine Party.” The beautiful, silver Cintron, piston powered MYSTIC slipped into Key West in the night, to set up shop and sneak a Super Boat Unlimited win away from the year long Unlimited (piston) contenders. In Wednesday’s heat race, that is exactly what happened.
Team Cintron Liquid Energy Owner Rich Wyatt said it best, "Our MYSTIC ran flawlessly on Wednesday. The design and engineering of that hull proved its superiority over other catamarans. We were able to run in the front without pushing the boat to the limit thanks to its excellent rough water capabilities." Boasting the third fastest lap speed of the race, the 3,000 HP Piston Powered MYSTIC took home the race win and garnered 250 points going into the 2ndand 3rd race. Electrical gremlins plagued the team for both of the following races but this dominating race-1 finish gave the MYSTIC/Cintron Team a 3rd place position in the World Championships…and supplied a compelling silver bullet style grace on the course.
In the Turbine Extreme Class the MYSTIC pre-race drama began right from the start. The 2009 SBI National Champions, Aqua-Mania set up early and commanded a full-face-view as you entered the exclusive Key West Dry Pit/Race Village area. On the water, early runs showed that each team had been busy between the Nationals and the Worlds.
In Super Boat International; points accumulated by becoming a National Champion toward a World Championship are not related. The World’s are just that, The World Championships. Dominance in Key West is clearly like starting with a clean sheet of paper and that is what both of the MYSTIC Turbine Extreme contenders did.
Driver, Marc Granet, and Throttleman, Scott Begovich, were elated with the way the boat handled under difficult and ever-changing racing conditions. "Our team worked extremely hard, we tested hard and with each race we were prepared and set up perfectly," quipped Marc Granet. Testing and preparation seemed to be the watchword of the two early (Wednesday and Friday) races.
The equally sized and configured Turbine Powered MYSTIC’s proved to be different once on the course. Lap 1 was clearly Aqua-Mania’s lap boasting a full 1 MPH advantage…their straight line acceleration was unmatched. Miss Geico spooled up in lap #2 which allowed a distance spread between the boats. Laps 2, 3 and 4 totaled an average speed advantage to Miss Geico which overcame the Aqua-Mania straight line acceleration gained on lap #1. A last lap dash for Rick Merola and Gregg Rosen wasn’t enough to overcome Miss Geico’s accumulated lap speeds and Wednesday’s win went to Miss Geico. The average race ending average speed was: 106.35 for Miss Geico and 104.79 for Aqua-Mania.
It was a new day and a new race at the beginning of Friday’s second heat event. Aqua-Mania started with a 25 point deficit (250 to 225). Although the 50’ MYSTIC’s were identically prepared and configured, Miss Geico displayed a lap-by-lap MPH advantage which accumulated over 6 of the 7 laps. Miss Geico finished Friday’s heat race with an average speed of 112.55 to Aqua-Mania’s 108.57 thus scoring the win to the AMF/Miss Geico Team. Although Gregg Rosen was not in the boat, (testing) on Saturday; an incident returning to the harbor precluded Aqua-Mania from competing on Sunday. Speculators had many opposing mental outcomes; but the World Championships would have been closer had both boats competed.
The Sunday-solo-run of the final heat of the 3 days of racing was challenging for the Marc Granet and Scott Begovich piloted class winning MYSTIC, it was a day without power steering. As the team entered the milling circle prior to the start of the race, the team lost all power steering and knew it would be a battle. As driver, Mark Granet explains, “We just wanted to get around the course and stay in front of the other Super Cats. We had a little trouble in turn three, but we were able to get it done and win our fourth World Title.”
Team owner, John Haggin, exclaimed, "Each race we continued to get faster. It is a wonderful feeling...."
“...And that is offshore racing”, states John Cosker, Owner of MYSTIC Powerboats, “...even when you think it will be a simple run, gremlins will put you through the mill. What’s great is that each one of our Turbine Extreme MYSTIC’s now has a championship.” “…we are so proud of all of our MYSTIC Teams, their drivers and throttlemen.”
For additional information, pictures and quotes, contact: Clay Ratcliffe, [email protected], 386-589-8848 www.MYSTICpowerboats.com
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