Every once in a while the performance boat industry reaches a spotlight that extends far beyond this enjoyable lifestyle, sport, recreation, whatever you call it. Usually it’s because of a racing crash or a horrific accident—occasionally it’s because of celebrity involvement.
Hulk Hogan and Billy Moore pose for a picture after riding in the Fountain Powerboats 32 Thunder Cat demo boat on Monday (click image to enlarge). Photos courtesy/copyright Hulk Hogan
That’s not to say that wrestling superstar Hulk Hogan’s Facebook post yesterday is going to “go viral,” but one of the most iconic and recognizable athletes of his era—in any sport—does have 5.5 million likes on his official Hulkamania page @HulkHogan so you never know how many people will see that he took a ride in a new Fountain Powerboats 32 Thunder Cat powered by twin Mercury Racing Verado 400R engines. In comparison, Fountain Powerboats—the builder of the beautiful sport cat he got to demo on Clearwater, Fla., with Iconic Marine Group’s Billy Moore yesterday—has 38,000 likes. The legendary Reggie Fountain, who founded the Washington, N.C., company and set up the ride for the Hulkster, has close to 3,000 likes on his @ReggieFriends page.
“I’m not going to lie, that was pretty neat,” Moore said last night after getting to meet Hogan in person and showing him the ropes in the 32-foot cat. “I knew he was coming obviously. We spoke a couple of times leading up to the demo. Big Reggie told me he might be looking for a boat, but that he wasn’t sure if he wanted a cat though. So we went out today after the fog rolled out and he had a blast. He was impressed with how powerful the boat felt and how quiet the Verados were.”
Hogan’s Facebook post, featuring him and Moore (click image above to enlarge), was short and sweet: “Woooooo that boat was fast. Thank you Reggie Fountain.”
As many powerboat fans know, Hogan owned a 38-foot Scarab Powerboats V-bottom called Immortal so he’s not new to performance boats.
“He definitely knows boats, but it was funny because he said, ‘Man this boat looks smaller than I expected—are you sure it’s 32 feet?’” Moore said with a laugh. “He followed that up by saying that he’s just used to boats being so much taller. I explained to him that this boat is more like a sportscar—sporty, agile and comfortable to drive—and that because of Mercury Racing’s outboard engine program, outboards are so popular nowadays thanks to the combination of reliability and performance.”
Moore, who is not a small guy, said he felt small compared to Hogan.
“He’s so big he actually makes the boat look small standing next to it,” the accomplished world champion throttleman added. “In reality he’s a gentle giant. He was as personable as anyone I’ve ever met. We had a normal conversation about one of our favorite Italian markets in town. And this is coming from a guy, who is as recognizable as anyone in the world. I think it you went to any country there’d be someone there who knows who Hulk Hogan is.”
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