Jim Schultz, the owner of the 51-foot Factory Billet Outerlimits V-bottom and the engine company/program of the same name, is one ambitious and brilliant guy. In Geremarie Corporation based in Lake Zurich, Ill., he has created one of the most advanced aluminum parts design and fabrication companies—almost completely automated with 100-plus computer-controlled machining cells—in the world. When he couldn’t find the engine-and-drive train solution he liked for his 51-footer, he created a remarkable one of his own.
The boat-and-power package was enough to produce a 161-mph run during its 2017 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout debut, and a 162-mph pass in the event the following year.
But Schultz’s latest plan—competing in this weekend’s top-speed contest in Central Missouri—could be his most ambitious yet. That’s because his lovely significant other of many years is pregnant. And she is due tomorrow.
“I think she planned it that way,” Schultz said, then laughed. “She loves running in the boat with me at 150 mph, but when I run it in the Shootout (with Mike Faucher, Factory Billet’s engine builder) she worries.”
The plan is for Schultz to fly in Friday, run the boat Saturday morning and fly home Saturday afternoon. (The boat arrived today.) As commercial air-carriers lack the schedule flexibility for his plan to be feasible, Schultz will fly down in his own jet aircraft and land locally. As soon as he’s done running the boat, he and his pilot will head for the airport and back to Illinois.
“My pilot and I are staying in the same room,” he said, then chuckled again. “So if we have to go at a moment’s notice, we will.”
Of course, this fragile plan easily could be derailed by pesky details such Schultz’s significant other actually going into labor before, on or immediately after her due date. With his plane and pilot at the ready, Schultz estimates he can be home in less than an hour if necessary.
Schultz knows his 2019 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout strategy will raise a few eyebrows, but he loves the event and is willing to go to what could be called extreme measures—under a delicate time frame—to participate.
“That’s how dedicated I am to this,” he said, then laughed again. “I love it. We have our new turbochargers on the engines and we tested last week. I didn’t think it was possible, but there’s a lot more there now.”
Schultz said he’s shooting for a top speed of 170 mph this Saturday.
Whether Factory Billet will put on a show during the 2019 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout remains up in the air. But here’s what we do know beyond any doubt.
Schultz and his lovely partner are expecting a girl.