In what has to be the best news of the 2020 offshore powerboating racing season, a new race is coming to the Lake of the Ozarks in Central Missouri. Called Offshore At The Ozarks-Cat Edition, the event is set for October 2-3 and will be produced by the Offshore Powerboat Association in collaboration with title sponsor Performance Boat Center.
Offshore racing returns to the Lake of the Ozarks this fall. Photo from the 2019 Lake Race by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
This week, OPA president Ed “Smitty” Smith, who heads the American Power Boat Association member-organization, and Mark Waddington, the co-owner of Performance Boat Center headquartered in Osage Beach, Mo., finalized details for the race, which is going to take place on the same course as Lake Race in front of Camden on the Lake Resort. The permit for the event limits the number of raceboats that can participate, so in the inaugural year only Supercat- and Super Stock-class raceboats will compete.
“The biggest issue was getting on the water before the weather turns,” said Waddington. “We couldn’t get a permit for December, but we were able to get one for early October.
The event will feature two days of racing with two races for each class Friday, and a final race on Saturday. Some 20 teams have committed so far, according to Waddington.
While it has not been finalized, Scott Colton and Gary Stray of the Miss GEICO confirmed that the team is strongly considering demonstration runs during the event and is entering discussions with its insurance giant sponsor next week.
Based on the prevailing mindset toward boating events in the Lake of the Ozarks area, Waddington is confident that the race will go forward.
“Given that the lake is more ‘open’ than anywhere else, we know the event will happen,” he said.
Even with its array of Lake of the Ozarks Shootout-based activities coming next week, Performance Boat Center has stepped up to back a new event on its home waters. Photo from the 2020 Cigarette Owners Rendezvous.