It’s safe to say that Grant Bruggemann, the owner/founder of Grant’s Signature Racing in Bradenton, Fla., and the throttleman for the STIHL offshore racing team and Kellie Lee, his dearest love and closest companion for the past four-and-a-half years, live and breathe high-performance powerboating. They work alongside one another six days a week at the famed rigging shop, and hit the road together on race weekends.
Less than a week after they tied the knot, Grant Bruggemann and Kellie Lee-Bruggemann found themselves working 3,000 miles from home. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
So no one who knew them was surprised that they chose the deck of the STIHL team’s Skater 388 catamaran as their local outdoor wedding chapel, so to speak, during the annual Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix a week-and-a-half ago. And why not? All their closest friends and family members were in town, many for the race and a few, such as Kellie’s best friend from Colorado, for the wedding. That Reverend Jim Black, a beloved figure even among diehard atheists and agnostics in the high-performance powerboating community, officiated the ceremony made it perfect.
Last than a week later, Grant Bruggemann and now Kellie Lee-Bruggemann found themselves in Nevada on the north shore of Lake Tahoe, one of the most breathtaking and romantic settings in the country.
But they weren’t there to honeymoon. They came to the lake to teach Southern Californian Chris Miller to drive a Skater 388 catamaran powered by Mercury Racing 1350 engines he had recently purchased from Northern Californian Karl Koster.