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Highs and Lows from 2013: Jeff Johnston

gone again skater

Jeff Johnston of Hering Propellers said a highlight of the 2013 boating season was seeing Kenny Mungle’s Gone Again Skater put on some impressive showings at a handful of events around the country. Photo by Jamie Russell

For Jeff Johnston, director of sales and marketing for Hering Propellers, his highlight from 2013 was a no-brainer—getting married to longtime girlfriend Nichole Overson in Newport Beach, Calif., in early October. Six weeks later the newlyweds were running around Key West, Fla., during the Florida Powerboat Club Key West Poker Run and the Super Boat International Offshore World Championships. Key West was one of a half-dozen performance boat events Johnston attended in 2013, so choosing a high point wasn’t that easy.

Jeff Johnston (right) joins Dave Hemmingson of Dave's Custom Boats at the Texas Outlaw Challenge in June.Jeff Johnston (right) joins Dave Hemmingson of Dave’s Custom Boats at the Texas Outlaw Challenge in June.

High: One thing that really stood out to me this year was seeing Kenny Mungle run Gone Again, his 32-foot Skater Powerboats catamaran, at events across the country. Not only did he bring home the Gunslinger GPS Shootout title at his hometown event the Texas Outlaw Challenge in June with a 171-mph top speed, he followed that up with a class-winning 177-mph run at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Missouri. Then he hauled the boat to Key West and even made a couple of passes on the racecourse in the 20-year-old former raceboat. He seemed to have so much fun this year. It was really cool to see that kind of excitement from a customer who put so much time, effort and money into a boat.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t tout Brad Rowland’s 114-mph top speed in his triple-engine South Bay pontoon to win the Top Toon award at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout. We worked with him to break his personal best by 3 mph and were quite impressed with his run.

Low: I can’t think of anything lower than Jeff Asbell and Brad Smith’s accident at the Lake Cumberland Poker Run (read the story). The passing of the two dedicated powerboaters really hit home as I’d been working closely with Jeff on propellers for his Skater for quite some time. Not only did I lose a customer, I lost someone I was just starting to get know well.

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