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20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

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Old 04-20-2005, 08:55 AM
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chuckbeecher
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Thumbs up 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

Do you remember?
According to the Key West paper this morning(keysnews.com)
20 years ago today Mark Lavin won the Conch Republic Offshore Challenge in Jesse James.
Anyone have any more details or stories of that race or of any of the "characters" that were racing?

Last edited by chuckbeecher; 04-20-2005 at 08:59 AM.
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Old 04-20-2005, 10:01 AM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

that was the year Dick fullam and Mike poppa were killed driving the 38 cougar cat "still crazy" the open class winner was another 38 cougar cat "Mister Roberts" driven by Tony Roberts Jr and Steve Curtis.

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Old 04-20-2005, 10:04 AM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

I didn't find truly detailed info on that Key West race. But from the New Jersey Performance PowerBoat Club web site, I found this:

http://www.njppc.com/OldOffshoreStor...ofoffshore.htm


A daring brace of brothers, Chris and Mark Lavin, used a 30-foot Conquest named Jesse James to steal almost every national circuit race they ran in, while collecting the U.S. crown and two world championships in Key West at the end of the year.

Sal Magluta failed to win a race in his 36-foot Cougar Seahawk but gathered in the Ď85 U.S. Open title on points while unknown Tony Roberts, driving the same boat that Halpern was killed in, since renamed A.J. Mr. Roberts, Jr., won the UIMís Sam Griffith Trophy in the first of two bloody season-end races in the nationís southernmost town.

The Yankís suffered their worst off*shore racing tragedy on the first of three days racing at Key West when the giant ex-Canadian pro footballer Dick Fullam and his throttleman Mike Poppa were killed when their 38-foot Cougar Still Crazy stuffed and sank in less than two seconds.

The following year proved as dramatic. The Lavinís showed up in a flashy new state-of-the-art Jesse James Conquest cat complete with the first really serious attempt to protect racing crews in the sportís history. Both the Lavin brothers wore restraining harnesses and sat surrounded by a cockpit safety cocoon.

In March, Jesse James whistled home first at an all-time record 104 mph plus in the U.S. season opener at Treasure Cay in The Bahamas. . . and lost. The race refe*ree nailed the Lavinís with a time penalty for getting on plane before the start, set*ting the stage for another development.

The runner-up boat of fried chicken impresario Copelandís was even wilder than Jesse James with its six 300-hp Mer*cury outboard powerheads belt driving two shafts connected to surface drives.

The 35-foot wooden Popeyes-diet Coke Cougar cat had been designed to hold eight such mills for kilo record runs. Copeland would have been happy to leave Treasure Cay with a third or better to qualify for the coming APBA kilo attempts in Sarasota in July.

He left it with the fastest victory in the sportís history... and as the first driver to top the mythical 100 mph competition barrier. Popeyes-diet Cokeís official speed was 103.2 mph!

If the Lavinís and Copelandís amazing runs left any skeptics, the 102.3 mph turned in by Willie Falcon in his 38-foot Cougar Team Seahawk three weeks later at Marathon, Florida eliminated most of them.
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Old 04-20-2005, 12:21 PM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

sorry i was only 8 years old, i didn't follow offshore that much
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Old 04-20-2005, 01:34 PM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

where are all the old pictures of the rigging in these multi-engine and advanced boats?????
someone please post
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Old 04-20-2005, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckbeecher
Do you remember?
According to the Key West paper this morning(keysnews.com)
20 years ago today Mark Lavin won the Conch Republic Offshore Challenge in Jesse James.
Anyone have any more details or stories of that race or of any of the "characters" that were racing?
In 1985 the offshore season (APBA only...there were no other "alphabet" groups or splinter series at that time) began and ended in Key West... The race referred to as 20 years ago today was obviously not the Key West World's but the season opener at the same venue. The Jesse James 30 footer was a Chris Cat ...not a Conquest... though both were designed by George Linder....

The speed records referred to were in 1986..... and both Popeyes....at Treasure Key..... and Magluta at Marathon trailed the Jesse James before setting their records..... do the math.

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Old 04-20-2005, 08:07 PM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

ouch i must be getting old. i remember this memory test like it has yesterday.
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Old 04-20-2005, 08:10 PM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

T2x:
In those days they raced the small places in the islands like Treasure Cay..where else...I know they had the out and backs to Bimini and Nassua..did they do any 3 legs or more like a Miami-Bimini-Mararathon or Key West?
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Old 04-21-2005, 08:44 AM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckbeecher
T2x:
In those days they raced the small places in the islands like Treasure Cay..where else...I know they had the out and backs to Bimini and Nassua..did they do any 3 legs or more like a Miami-Bimini-Mararathon or Key West?
In the mid 80's the races were already on shorter courses.... (maybe 10-30 mile "laps")...... as opposed to point to point. The exception was Miami-Bimini. IN addition John Crouse was putting on Miami Nassau...and Miami/NY..... Both of these attracted only a handful of boats and were more special events than true offshore races (no class points....etc). In 1986 the races were held in New Orleans, Rochester, Traverse City, Point Pleasant, Miami-Bimini, Marathon, Sarasota, Treasure Cay, Grand Haven, and Key West. If my memory serves me.

The calmer courses(and raising the x dimensions to OPC levels) allowed the boats to run at and over 125 mph....which was a 45 mph increase over the previous generation of 4-5 years before. A mid 80's Cigarette or Apache was lucky to hit 90 mph.....85 in race trim. Mid 80's cats like Jesse James and the Seahawks were 115-130 mph boats....... ready to race. The four engined I/O Superboats like Popeyes and Mercruiser Special were also in the 120-130 mph range.

5 years later the Dirty Laundry 4 engine CUV was touching 170.......

The speeds exploded in only a 10 year span.

T2x

Last edited by T2x; 04-21-2005 at 08:47 AM.
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Old 04-21-2005, 11:03 AM
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Default Re: 20 Yrs. Ago Today Offshore?

I love the discussion on races and racing from the 80's. Great thread. Thanks for your contributions old wise and obsolete one!
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