While she debuted her new ride during the Florida Powerboat Club’s Key West Poker Run in November, powerboat enthusiast Brittany Dunn—the bride-to-be of well-known performance boater Robert “Bubba” Chrisco—was excited to kick off the new year with gusto by participating in yesterday’s Joey Gratton Memorial New Year’s Day Fun Run in Sarasota, Fla., in her 2018 Skater Powerboats 368 catamaran that Supreme Marine’s Troy Hannon rewired, rerigged and repowered with twin Mercury Racing 450R outboard engines over the summer.
Brittany Dunn is planning to run her new Skater 368 cat powered by Mercury Racing 450R engines at events around the country this year. Photo by Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix
Dubbed Mrs. War Party—all of Chrisco’s boats have been named War Party, including his newest ride, a 33-foot Airship RIBs model—Dunn’s 36-footer is her first outboard-powered cat. The Virginia native who moved to Oklahoma with Chrisco and recently purchased a second home at Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri is beyond thrilled with her new boat, which she purchased from former OffshoreOnly.com owner Steve Schuble.
“I’ve owned quite a few boats but I’ve always wanted an outboard cat,” Dunn said. “With how much the outboards have caught on, I definitely think they’re the way to go—especially maintenance wise. I wasn’t sure which direction I wanted to go. I sea trialed an MTI and rode in a few other cats but when Bubba bought the Airship in August we were at Supreme Marine and I saw Steve’s Skater. I knew right then that I wanted the boat. It was powered by Mercury Racing 400R engines but Steve was repowering it with 450s, which is what I wanted anyway.
“Bubba was funny because he said he didn’t want an outboard cat—he’s happier just cruising around the Florida Keys in a center console,” she added with a laugh. “We bought the boat back in August, but we kept it a secret while Troy redid everything and started dialing in the boat to get it ready for Key West. He’s been working on it since then, too. It’s his baby now. I’m going to keep it down there and do a bunch of the Florida Powerboat Club winter and spring events before we take it to Lake Havasu in Arizona for Super Cat Fest West in April and the Tickfaw 200 Poker Run in Louisiana after that. From there, we’ll probably take it to the Lake of the Ozarks and then figure out the event schedule from there. I’d like to run it in the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout this year.”
Dunn said Hannon made her a booster seat, added adjustable steering to make her as comfortable as possible in the boat, which she has been driving with her longtime friend and well-known boating safety instructor, Brad Schoenwald, and installed SeaDek in several key spots, including inside the hatches to make hauling luggage more convenient.
She said Hannon also created custom air intake scoops for the 450R engines, which he is selling to manufacturers and customers alike, and has seen significant performance gains in a couple of boats he’s installed them on already.
“I love this boat—its handling is amazing,” said Dunn, who was more than happy to rock her new Speedonthewater.com bikini (right) during the Key West Poker Run. “I know I don’t want to be in anything smaller than this, that’s for sure. The best part is that the motors are brand new and we have an eight-year warranty with the factory-backed extended service plan.”
Hannon said he has enjoyed getting to know Dunn and Chrisco over the last several months.
“Brittany is such a cool person—she’s beautiful, super approachable and extremely down to earth,” said Hannon, who met her for the first time through Shuble. “It’s cool as hell to have another woman out there running a bad-ass boat like this one. This Skater is an amazing-riding boat. It’s super forgiving and a very safe boat. We’re still testing props and engine heights because the boat was built for inboards and does not have a notched transom. We installed STR X-Act brackets recently and went from an 8 ½-inch setback to a 12-inch setback, which seems to have helped.”
Check out the slideshow above for more images of Dunn and Chrisco and their Mrs. War Party Skater. Photos courtesy Pete Boden, Brittany Dunn and Troy Hannon.
Hannon explained that having Dunn in one of his boats has provided great publicity for his business already.
“I didn’t know Brittany before this, but a lot of people know who she is, which has been great for Supreme Marine,” Hannon explained. “Not that we weren’t super busy already—we didn’t slow down here all year long.”
Dunn said she is thinking about building a tilt trailer for the boat to make it easier to haul it to various places and events around the country. But that’s a story for another day as she already has a 32-foot enclosed trailer that she designed to take to events to help promote her new business, Bubble-Kini Boutique. She said to look for her mobile boutique at several events this year.
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