Two familiar names in offshore powerboat racing are planning to join forces for a couple of races during the 2015 season. Veteran Stock-class throttleman Ryan Beckley will share the cockpit of his 30-foot, outboard-powered Skater Powerboats catamaran with relative newcomer Jake Noble, the son of J.R. Noble of Team STIHL Superboat-class fame for the Super Boat International season-opener May 15-17 in Cocoa Beach, Fla., and the organization’s National Championships in Clearwater, Fla., September 25-27.
Most recently, Ryan Beckley teamed up with driver Tanner Lewis for the inaugural Qatar Cup. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
With Beckley handling the throttles of the S-111 DoublEdge Motorsports cat, Noble made his rookie driving debut last season at the SBI event in Clearwater, where the Turtle Cove Marina-sponsored team finished third.
“It was great—we had a really fun time,” Noble said. “I am looking forward to getting back in the cockpit with Ryan again.”
While Clearwater typically is a fast, flat-water race with sweeping 180-degree turns at the end of each straightaway, Cocoa Beach is anything but. Since it was added to the SBI schedule several years ago, Cocoa Beach has consistently produced the roughest conditions of any venue during the organization’s regular season. Beckley won there last year, but in the 32-foot Doug Wright Stock-class catamaran then called SOS Venezuela with former teammate Chris Schoenbohm.
With just one race under his belt, Noble knows that racing in tough conditions will present a big learning curve. “When Ryan asked me about Cocoa I said, ‘That’s a really rough race.’ He said, ‘Well, you have to get seat time when it’s rough some time.’ ”
Beckley said he plans to compete in all of the Offshore Powerboat Grand Prix series races, the SBI World Championships in Key West, Fla., the Offshore Powerboat Association’s Lake Race (on Lake of the Ozarks in Central Missouri) and “maybe” the OPA Championships in Englewood, Fla. Longtime teammate Tanner Lewis is slated to join him for all of the OPGP events. Most recently, the duo competed in the inaugural Qatar Cup in Doha, the country’s capital city.
“Reliable Services Group will be our title sponsor in Cocoa Beach,” said Beckley. “They are an HVAC company serving all of Central Florida. We will also have Wayne Deck Realtor, Slow & Low BBQ and Barfield Contracting as local sponsors.”