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Doubling Down In The Florida Keys, Cigarette Style

Among the 79 boats in last week’s Florida Powerboat Club Miami Show Boat Poker Run to Key Largo was a sporty-yet-elegant Cigarette Racing Team 41 Nighthawk. Andrew Mackey of St. Louis, who has a second home in Osage Beach, Mo., on the Lake of the Ozarks shore, purchased the high-performance center console through Performance Boat Center, also in Osage Beach. The stunning boat was delivered just in time for the event and Mackey ran it with his girlfriend, Savannah Richardson, and a couple of members of the Performance Boat Center team.

Andrew Mackey’s 2022 Cigarette 41 Nighthawk was among the newest boats in the Florida Powerboat Club Miami Boat Show Poker Run fleet. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

Though the event was the 30-year-old Mackey’s first Miami Boat Show Poker Run, it was not his first trip on a 41 Nighthawk to the Florida Keys. In early November 2021, he and Richardson joined Performance Boat Center co-owner Brett Manire on a 41 Nighthawk—then owned by the multi-brand, full-service dealership—for the Florida Powerboat Club Key West Poker Run. Mackey already had a 41-footer under construction at Cigarette headquarters in Opa-locka, Fla., so his first trek through the Keys was akin to an extended demo ride.

“It really gave me good insight into how the boat would perform in the ocean—and it was definitely a lot of fun,” he said. “I would do it again.”

By comparison, Mackey’s more-recent trek to Key Largo was short. But from Thursday through Sunday, he managed to put 20 operating hours on the boat, which will be housed at Fort Lauderdale’s F3 Marina, where Performance Boat Center has established a burgeoning concierge business.

Mackey’s relationship with Performance Boat Center goes back at least seven years to when he sold his 35-foot Fountain Powerboats sportboat through the dealership. Manire later sold him a 2008 Cigarette 38 Top Gun that Mackey loved but also eventually sold before stepping up to take one of Performance Boat Center’s 41 Nighthawk build slots with Cigarette.

“Andrew is a good friend and neighbor—his place is right across the lake from PBC,” Manire, then laughed. “And he is a religious Redhead Lakeside Grill and Tiki Bar customer.”

“We had a great time in Key West in November and Key Largo last weekend,” he continued. “Andrew and Savannah were gracious enough to have me and my girlfriend, Kate, on his new Cigarette and we had a great time hanging out with the Performance Boat Center group.

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For Andrew Mackey and Savannah Richardson, their second trip to the Florida Keys was as much fun as their first.

Before committing to his new Cigarette, Mackey was looking at outboard engine-powered catamarans—and he still plans to purchase one at some point. But he’s delighted with the quad Mercury Racing 450R outboard 41-footer and believes that he’ll likely hang onto it even when he does buy a cat.

“I can plan to keep it for at least couple of years,” he said. “It’s a boat I can grow with.”

Starting with Performance Boat Center’s Spring Fun Run on May 15, Mackey’s Cigarette will be back at the Lake of the Ozarks on a lift behind his waterfront home. He also plans to run it in the dealership’s Cigarette Owners Rendezvous (June 16-19) and Outboard Only Fun Run (July 22).

The 42-footer will be based at Mackey’s Lake of the Ozarks home this summer. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

“The entire process was great,” said Mackey, who visited Cigarette three times while his boat was being built. “Rob Rich at Performance Boat Center helped me a lot with the interior and exterior colors. The design was easy. Honestly, I can’t say enough good about Performance Boat Center.”

As for a return to the Keys—specifically Key West—this year, Mackey is all in. But given all the fun he had during his first trip in November, he’s not sure if he’ll bring his boat.

“Savannah and I will be there,” he said, then chuckled. “It’s undetermined if the boat will go or not, but the two of us will be there.”

For the next few months, Mackey’s 41-footer will be housed at F3 Marina in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Photo by Jeff Helmkamp copyright Helmkamp Photos.

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