For Dennis and Jason Parvey and Jason and Johnny Saris, sharing the cockpit in powerboat racing has been a remarkable and treasured family experience. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
Last weekend’s Lake of the Ozarks Shootout top-speed competition in Central Missouri saw a stunning accomplishment from one of the best-known father-and-son teams in high-performance powerboating competition. In what would be the final run of their Shootout career, Dennis Parvey, a 66-year-old dentist from Minnesota, and his 30-year-old son, Jason, laid down a 161-mph run in their 18-year-old, 43-foot full-cabin Black Thunder V-bottom powered by a couple supercharged 2,000-plus-hp engines. That was enough to tie them with Factory Billet, a 51-foot carbon-fiber-epoxy canopied V-bottom built in 2008 and powered by turbocharged engines of similar power output.
As usual, Dennis Parvey drove, throttled and trimmed the open-cockpit boat. Jason Parvey reprised his role of keeping his father company on the long idle to the Shootout course, watching the gauges and hanging on for dear life. After their final run on Sunday, they announced their retirement.
“Our last run was our last run,” said Dennis Parvey.