If you follow anything fellow OffshoreOnly.com columnist Matt Trulio and I have been writing about lately on speedonthewater.com, you should know what event is just around the corner—the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Central Missouri. The 28th annual one to be exact.
To be more exact, the Shootout technically started already as the eighth annual golf tournament took place at Old Kinderhook Golf Club a few days after the volunteer kick-off party at The Stables at Cannon Smoked Saloon officially got the ball rolling. There’s also this weekend’s seventh annual Mini Shootout with RC boats racing on The Springs at Ha Ha Tonka State Park, the Shootout on the Strip Wednesday evening, the Make-A-Wish rides on Thursday followed by the massive Performance Boat Center Party on Thursday, Friday’s poker run and the awesome Super Cat Fest. But really, it’s all about the Saturday and Sunday top-speed runs.
Between the return of the last year’s Top Gun winner—Don Onken’s quad-engine American Ethanol Mystic Powerboats catamaran that ran 208 mph—to the major emphasis on “girl power” such as teammates Tristan Collins-Garvin and Yvonne Aleman running a 30-foot Skater Powerboats cat, Summer Richardson driving her Swoop Motorsports Dial 911 Skater, Nikki Amos driving a triple-engine 47-foot Fountain Powerboats V-bottom (with her husband Ricky) and the induction of Playcraft matriarch Carolyn Dorris (and her husband, Jim) into the Shootout Hall of Fame, this year’s top-speed event at the 34 mile marker in front of Captain Ron’s in Sunrise Beach is going to be an amazing one.
I know because we’ve had more than 20 stories on speedonthewater.com previewing what’s to come at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout. That’s a lot—and there’s plenty more to follow, including the plans for Big Thunder Marina, the Wake Effects crew, which also is racing the same weekend in Mentor, Ohio, and information on the Shootout on the Strip presented by Waves and Wheels.
Of course, I’ll be there as usual reporting live the event. I have a long list of people, boats and more to see, but here are five things (in no particular order) that I’m looking forward to seeing.
- The turbine-powered Low Altitude. Not only will Win Farnsworth, Chris Kissinger and Robbie Willis be teaming up to run the 50-foot canopied Mystic, they’ll be letting their favorite blond bombshell—Summer Richardson—take the wheel with them at some point during the event. Of course the cat’s fiery show that I expect to see on Friday or Saturday evening at Camden on the Lake Resort for Super Cat Fest is almost as cool.
- Flight Club Skater. Two of my favorite people to interview—Ron Szolack and Chip Miller—are going to run Szolack’s Skater 368 canopied cat powered by a pair of Sterling Performance engines and are realistically thinking 200 mph. Incredible—best of luck guys.
- MTI’s new 340X cat. I’m pretty excited about the opportunity to ride in the first 340X catamaran from MTI next week. Powered by twin Mercury Racing Verado 400R engines, the highly anticipated catamaran looks amazing in pictures so I’m sure I’ll be drooling over at the docks.
- Socializing. OK, the parties have to crack my top five. Sorry, there are too many good ones to pass up. The Performance Boat Center Thursday night deal is off the hook and having the auction there helps the event raise a great deal of money. And I can’t wait for the birthday party Saturday night at Camden in honor of Collins-Garvin, the Richardsons (Summer and her husband, Travis, have birthdays on the 27th and 29th), Beau Renfroe, Shane Sherman and Michael Areces.
- Cosker and Newby recognition. John Cosker, the founder of Mystic, and the late legendary photographer, Tom Newby, who I worked with at Powerboat magazine for several years, are getting inducted into the Hall of Fame on Tuesday night at The Stables. Well deserved my friends.
Former Powerboat editor Jason Johnson was an integral part of the magazine staff from 2005 through 2011, utilizing journalistic integrity and experience in and around performance boats to report on all aspects of the go-fast lifestyle. The award-winning writer resides in Southern California and is the executive editor and co-publisher of speedonthewater.com.