Proving the youth movement is alive and well—at least to some extent—in offshore powerboat racing, Brit Lilly of the LSB/Hurricane of Awesomeness and Kevin Smith of Tug It Racing are joining forces to create a team to compete in what currently is the Superboat Extreme class under the Super Boat International umbrella and the Super Vee Extreme class on the Offshore Powerboat Association circuit. To that end, Lilly and Smith have purchased a canopied 40-foot Fountain V-bottom and currently are hauling it back from Washington to the Lilly Sport Boats facility in Arnold, Md.
Lilly and Smith currently are hauling their new raceboat back to the Lilly Sport Boats shop in Maryland.
Built in 2002, the canopied 40-footer—now a bare hull—formerly ran under the Firewater and Cintron team umbrellas. The new team likely will be called Extreme Hurricane Of Awesomeness, though Lilly and Smith said they “haven’t nailed down a solid name yet” and have not made a final decision.
“Brit and I have been talking about moving to Extreme class to build our own team,” said Smith, who runs Tug It Racing, a 30-foot Phantom, with Lilly in the OPA Super Vee Lite class. “So we have been keeping our eyes out for a boat to buy, with the plan of selling one of our boats to help fund the new boat.”
Smith said that effective immediately the Tug It Racing 30-footer is up for sale. “There is a market for it so it should sell pretty easily without having to give it away,” he said. “Right off the trailer, it’s always been a podium boat and there is a lot of interest in this class.”
Lilly, who in the past two years has claimed back-to-back SBI Superboat V-class national and world championships in his 30-foot Extreme LSB racer with teammate Ron Umlandt, plans to keep his boat and continue competing on the SBI circuit. Smith and Lilly said they also will continue competing in Tug It on the OPA circuit, and likely both boats will run in the Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix and two new Race World Offshore events, until Smith’s boat sells.
For a closer look at the soon-to-be-refitted and repowered 40-footer, check out the slideshow above.
Famed engine builder Joey Griffin will supply the 800-hp naturally aspirated engines for the Fountain, which will be rigged and repainted at the LSB facility.
“Thank god Joey is such a good friend and has agreed to build us motors using some of the stuff we have at the shop,” said Lilly. “Between what Joey will give us and what we are able to buy, we should be able to put together a competitive program.”
While Lilly and Smith have not ruled out competing this season in their new raceboat, they are planning to campaign it in earnest in 2019. Although the class has dwindled in recent years, both are confident its trend upward in terms of competitor and fan interest.
“There are other people who have bought boats for this class and are putting them together,” said Lilly.
Smith said he and Lilly have been inspired by the newly formed Supercat Racing owners group, which has created its own schedule of races in which its members plan to compete.
Lilly and Smith have enjoyed succes in their respective single-engine V-bottom classes on the OPA and SBI circuits. Photos courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix and Cody Edmunds/Edmunds Photography.
“That’s one of the things that gave us the spark,” he said. “They’re doing their own tech and their own rules, and their choosing their own race sites. We think this class can be right behind them.”