Offshore racing fans know Tom Abrams from his competition days in Reliable Carriers, a 41-foot MTI catamaran named for his high-end automobile transportation services company headquartered in Michigan. Abrams, who splits his time between Michigan and South Florida, exited the sport in 2008 and eventually sold the 41-footer, which currently runs as Pro Floors Racing and is the Supercat-class points leader heading into this weekend’s American Power Boat Association Offshore Championship Series season finale in Fort Myers Beach, Fla.
Though he’s owned powerboats for much of his adult life, former offshore racer and Reliable Carriers head Tom Abrams will take delivery of his first Cigarette—this new 41 GTR—in a couple of weeks (click image to enlarge). Photos courtesy/copyright Cigarette Racing Team.
In a couple of weeks, Abrams will take delivery of an immaculate new Cigarette 41 GTR performance center console powered by quad Mercury Racing V-8 450R outboards. It is the first customer-ordered 41 GTR to be equipped with Mercury Racing’s most powerful supercharged outboards, as well as Abrams’ first Cigarette.
“I have had pretty much every boat brand,” he said. “But Cigarette to me has always had this mystique and I always wanted one. A Cigarette is timeless, and the fit and finish are impeccable.
“I have only seen the finished boat through pictures,” he added. “It looks incredible.”
A good portion of the credit for that look belongs to Missouri-based Mark Morris of Visual Imagination who created and executed the 41-footer’s smouldering, intricate paintjob.
Though he’s been out of the sport for 10 years, the 65-year-old Abrams never exited the go-fast powerboating world and has owned “at least 15” boats, the most recent of which was a 35-foot Donzi center console powered by Mercury Marine Verado 275 outboard engines. He sold the 38-footer after putting 100 hours on it, but its reliability and versatility convinced him that another center console was in his future.
Check out the slideshow above to enjoy images of Abrams’ new Cigarette 41 GTR.
“I have known Skip Braver of Cigarette Racing Team for 20 years but I looked around at everybody’s product before I ordered my Cigarette,” he said. “I don’t normally like to publicize things, but I was so impressed with the process and the product. With raceboats and so on, I’ve had to be so hands-on with everything. With this build, I didn’t have to do a whole lot, which was nice. Every time I went down to Cigarette, they were ready for me.”
Abrams said he plans to store his new Cigarette in Michigan this winter. Next season, he may run the 41-footer in the Boyne Thunder Poker Run as well as tour the Cheneaux Islands—both are in the Upper Michigan Peninsula area.
“Everything I asked for is on that boat,” he said. “It’s incredible.”