Despite that all his competitors in Australian offshore racing’s Super Cat Outboard class run twin Mercury Marine 300XS outboard engines on their canopied catamarans, veteran competitor and Australian Offshore Superboat Championships team owner Conn Saloumidis will be running a pair of 300-hp Evinrude E-TEC G-2 outboards this season. The 2016 series opens this weekend in Bowen, Queensland.
In 2015, Saloumidis ran lower-output 280-hp Evinrude G-1 outboards on his 32-foot SUV Blade catamaran, which was built in Australia and is now sponsored by Simrad. He plans to head out to test the Evinrude-powered, 5,000-pound cat later this morning (current Australian time is as this story goes live is 5 a.m., Thursday July 14) and will depart for Bowen—a three-day drive from his home in Sydney—tomorrow.
Said Saloumidis, “I chose Evinrude because we wanted to open our sport up to different manufacturers and broaden the appeal to fans.” Photo courtesy/copyright Conn Saloumidis/Speedonthewater.com
“You wouldn’t watch NASCAR if it were just Ford racing now, would you?” Saloumidis said via a Facebook video call earlier this morning. “It’s good to bring in other competition. It expands the sport and makes it more interesting. I chose Evinrude because we wanted to open our sport up to different manufacturers and broaden the appeal to fans.”
For the most part, the installation of the Evinrude outboards on the carbon-fiber and Kevlar catamaran was “plug and play,” according to Saloumidis. He did, however make a few modifications.
“The engines are standard from the factory, but we have done three modifications,” he said. “We went with solid mounts, added low-water pickups to the nose cone using the original passages and went with a heavy-duty propeller shaft. Then we polished the gear cases to make them look sexy.”
Saloumidis said that once everything is dialed in he expects the boat to top out at 110 mph.
Editor’s note: Look for a follow-up report on speedonthewater.com as test results become available.
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