With his Laticrete-backed Stock V-class Nobody’s Business raceboat sold, North Carolina-based offshore racer Chris Uzzolina has been focused on getting his new-to-him V Extreme-class Skater Powerboats 399 raceboat ready for competition this year. Uzzolina’s goal is to have the 39-footer done in time for the 2023 Race World Offshore World Championships November 6-12 in Key West, Fla.
But while Uzzolina will be mostly off the racecourse this season, his Connecticut-based throttleman and teammate Rob Hartmann will be on it thanks to Marylander Travis Petko, the owner/driver of the formerly Stock V-class Relentless team, which will run under the Relentless/Laticrete banner.
In advance of the coming season, Relentless/Laticrete graphics will grace the 30-foot Phantom that previously ran as Relentless in the Stock V ranks. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
That the Nobody’s Business team shifted—so to speak—its Laticrete sponsorship to the Relentless team is an unusual but not unheard of move. Like Nobody’s Business, Relentless runs a 30-foot Phantom, which soon will be wrapped in Relentless/Laticrete graphics in advance of the American Power Boat Association Offshore National Championship Series, which kicks of April 28-30 in Marathon, Fla.
“Laticrete enjoyed being part of the sport and enjoyed the exposure they got last year,” Uzzolina explained. “They wanted to sponsor us again this season, but since we moved up to a bigger boat that won’t be ready until the end of the season, we decided to have Rob partner with a different team. Rob had throttled for Travis a couple of times and they did well, so that was the best choice.
“He will be in the boat with Travis most of the time but I might get in it once or twice if they need me,” he continued. “I will be assisting them whenever possible throughout the season.”
Added Hartmann, who notched a first-place finish at the 2021 St. Petersburg Grand Prix with Petko in the Relentless raceboat, “I really love that we’re going into the Mod V class. And Travis and I work well in the boat—he’s come a long way since he started.
“I think we’ll represent Laticrete really well this season,” he continued. “And who knows, there could be two Laticrete boats on the racecourse at the end of the year.”
Relentless team owner/driver Travis Petko and guest throttleman Rob Hartmann took the Stock V-class checkered flag in the Powerboat P1-produced 2021 St. Petersburg (Fla.) Grand Prix.
Petko is delighted to share the cockpit with Hartmann.
“We are going to do our best,” Petko said. “We have a really fast boat. Rob and I always have done well—I think we’ve been on the podium every time we’ve raced together.”
“With the bigger fleet in Mod V, I think there’s going to be a learning curve for everyone this season,” he added.
A couple of months ago, Uzzolina opened a shop of his own called NB13 Motorsports. That’s where he’s working on the 39-foot Skater V Extreme-class raceboat built by the Douglas, Mich., company.
“It’s going as well as can be expected,” he said. “I have the drives off the transom, now I need to go to Sarasota (Fla.) to get the transmissions and extension boxes. And I’m starting to work on the cockpit layout with Simpson Racing.”
Work on Uzzolina’s 39-foot Skater raceboat for the V Extreme class is well underway.
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