Caught up with Terry Sobo, the director of sales and marketing for Nor-Tech Hi-Performance Boats in Cape Coral, Fla., this afternoon. Sobo had just returned from the Florida Powerboat Club’s annual Key West Poker Run. The fleet included Nor-Tech’s open- and enclosed-cockpit 80-footers.
“Both the 80s took off on Thursday and cut out at Stiltsville to run on the outside to Key West,” said Sobo. “I know I’m biased, but it was impressive to see both of them running in Biscayne Bay and then, later that day, pull into the harbor at Key West.”
According to Sobo, the open-cockpit 80-footer, dubbed the Super 80 Roadster by Nor-Tech and the Lady Lisa by its owner, proved equally impressive at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show in late October. The high-performance yacht was an attention-getter that sparked record boat show sales for the company.
“I went into Lauderdale a little pessimistic,” said Sobo. “It was our third Lauderdale show in a row and we hadn’t done much in the other two, so I was wondering if it was worth it.
“I was shocked beyond belief,” Sobo continued. “We sold more boats at that show than I’ve sold in 20 years of boat shows. The primary buyer was for our 39-foot center consoles—we sold four of those plus one quad-engine with contracts and checks, and they were to new buyers who weren’t familiar with Nor-Tech.
Having the 80 there really justified to a lot of people that we kind of know what we’re doing,” he concluded. “There were a lot of skeptics saying, ‘What do they know about building a center console?’ But when they see the 80 and the work that went into it, and then they see the other performance boats on display, they believe we can build a center console. The 80 was a showpiece that really proved our point.”