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Miss Geico Singed at OPA Opener

The first race of the Offshore Powerboat Association season May 29-30 in Ocean City, Md., saw the Miss Geico catamaran have a scary—but mostly uneventful—moment before a Saturday testing session. A gust of wind during a “hot start” and residual fuel in the exhaust caused a burst of flame to blow back onto the turbine-powered cat. The boat escaped the incident with “cosmetic damage,” according to Marc Granet, Miss Geico’s driver.

“That fuel ignited at the same time a 30-mph gust came through, and it fell right over the back of the boat,” Granet explained. “Nothing was damaged but a little Clear Cote, so the crew sanded it down and put a sticker over it. We repaired the cosmetic damage and got it ready to go for the race.”

Unfortunately for the Miss Geico team, a stuck fuel diverter knocked it out of the Sunday event.

“We could only get 40 percent power,” said Granet. “It was just one of those weekends.

“But when the boat ran, it felt fantastic,” he added.