Though it’s not unusual for performance-boat enthusiasts to cycle in and out of the ownership ranks, some returns to the fold are more surprising than others. Count Tennessee’s Chad and Heather Collier in that group of unexpected comebacks, and not because the couple didn’t enjoy their time on the water in the 44- and 50-foot Mystic Powerboats catamarans they most recently owned. The Colliers appreciated those exotic go-fast rides and several more before them, but they reached a point where they needed a break.
That a 2018 model-year MTI-V 42 center console powered by quad Mercury Racing 400R outboard engines enticed them back is not surprising in and of itself, except that center consoles didn’t exactly thrill the Colliers—especially Heather—until they spied the 42-footer for sale in Southwest Florida a few weeks back.
A 42-foot MTI center console has brought Chad and Heather Collier back to the high-performance boating world.
“Heather was the one who talked me into building my Mystic C4400 cat,” Chad Collier said, then laughed. “Now we have an MTI center console and she told me she was sorry we didn’t do this sooner.”
Said Heather Collier, who also chuckled, “I know, I know.”
Though the MTI wasn’t the first center console the Colliers looked at, it was the only one that appealed to their tastes.
“MTI just does it right—the creature comforts in the boat are incredible,” said Chad Collier. “Every time I look around, I find something new that I like about it. We looked at center consoles from a lot of manufacturers, and to me they all looked like they were born from a fishing boat. MTI does its own thing. The lines and curves on the boat, the stitching in the upholstery, the flawless paint—we were just blown away. I have to give Randy Scism and the MTI team all the credit in the world.”
Told that Collier had purchased one of his center consoles and loves it, Randy Scism, who founded and owns the Wentzville, Mo., high-performance center console and catamaran company, was delighted.
“That makes my day every time I hear that—I’ve told numerous people this will be your favorite boat you’ve ever had—but it’s so nice to hear it from him,” Scism said. “Chad’s had a lot of nice boats. We’re glad he’s joined the MTI family.”
A hallmark of center-console platforms, easy boarding recently became important for Collier. On May 4 he was involved in a horrific solo-vehicle automobile accident that destroyed his right femur that led to a total hip replacement. The head-on impact into a concrete structure was so violent that Collier’s seat belt broke six of his ribs.
First responders had to cut him out of his vehicle. His road back to mobility has been painful.
Still on the mend and grateful to be alive, Collier is unflinchingly honest about the cause of the accident.
“I was looking at my damn phone,” he said. “I picked up the phone to send a text and the next thing I knew I hit a concrete driveway and flipped.
“We could all get off our phones for a few minutes,” he added. “If nothing else, this is a public service announcement.”
Said Chad Collier of his family’s new ride, “Every time I look around, I find something new that I like about it.”
The Colliers returned home yesterday from their maiden, weeklong adventure in their 42-footer—organized by their longtime friend Justin Lucas—from Fort Lauderdale to the Upper Florida Keys with a group of eight vessels based out of Tennessee. The group based itself in Key Largo and took day trips from there. It was the Colliers’ first adventure in the Keys beyond the Florida Powerboat Club’s annual Key West Poker Run.
But it won’t be their last
“When you do a poker run, you have a mission,” Chad Collier said. “You’re just trying to get to your destination. But this was so different. There was no schedule. You just go when you want to. It was incredible. We saw things most people from Tennessee don’t often get to see. We had a blast.”
But that doesn’t mean they’re done with poker runs for good. In fact, the center console will be delivered to the Colliers’ home-base outside Nashville so they can go through it, enjoy it on their local waterway and then haul it to Fort Lauderdale for the Florida Powerboat Club Key West event.
After all, the name of their new boat—like that of their last two boats—is Habitual.
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