Delivered this Tuesday to the Seelye Wright Toy Store in Kalamazoo, Mich., the first new Checkmate 43 Punisher V-bottom reportedly topped 85 mph before leaving the Checkmate plant in Bucyrus, Ohio. According to Doug Smith, the owner of Checkmate, the stepped hull 43-footer with twin Mercury Racing 700SCi engines was over-propped with it 35-inch pitch Mercury propellers, and a new set of Mercury 33-inch props is on its way to the Kalamazoo-based dealership.
“With the 35s, the most we could get out of the engines was 4,850 rpm, and we’re supposed to get 5,300 up top,” said Smith. “With the 33s, we expect the boat to run around 93 mph.”
According to Jeff Kopec, the general manager of the power sports division for Seelye-Wright Toy Store—the owner of the dealership bought the first model for himself—they also will test the 43-footer with Hering propellers courtesy of CK Motorsports.
“We’re shooting for 90-plus mph,” said Kopec.
At present, the 43 Punisher is at the famed Mitcher T Custom Painting for touch-up work. Most likely, the 43-footer will not be completed in time to make next weekend’s Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Missouri, which originally was part of the dealership’s plan.
“Much as we’d like it, I just don’t foresee that happening,” said Kopek. “We don’t want to take it there until it’s absolutely perfect.”
Acccording to Smith, Seelye Wright Toy Store is Checkmate’s largest dealer.
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