Based in New Jersey, the Offshore Powerboat Association has long attracted a remarkable contingent of competitors from across the Northeast. But not all of those teams have the time, much less the means, to travel to races outside the area. So using existing contests on the OPA schedule, Ed “Smitty” Smith, the organization’s president, and his crew are adding a Northeast Championship Series this season.
The first race of the 2021 Offshore Powerboat Association, the Point Pleasant Beach Grand Prix is already in the books. Photo by Tim Sharkey copyright Sharkey Images.
The first race of the series, the Point Pleasant Beach Grand Prix, happened earlier this month. The balance of events in the series will be:
• The Eastlake Ohio Grand Prix, July 16-18, Eastlake, Ohio.
• St. Clair River Classic, July 30-August 1 in St. Clair, Mich.
• The Great Lakes Grand Prix, August 5-8, Michigan City, Ind.
• The Solomons Grand Prix, August 27-29, Solomons, Md.
• The Crystal Coast Grand Prix, September 10-12, Morehead City, N.C.
Though there are six events in the series, championship points will be determined by five races—each team can drop its worst result or simply run just five races. To makes things even more interesting, the Crystal Coast Grand Prix—the final race of the series—will be a double-points affair.
“The first stop of the Northeast Championship Series, the Point Pleasant Beach Grand Prix, went off without a hitch just eight days after the Lake Race,” wrote Nick Smith, the vice president of the Offshore Powerboat Association, in a press release from the organization. “Now with our sights set on the Tiki Lee’s Shootout and Kilo Runs in Maryland, we can announce the second stop in the series, the East Grand Prix, which is fully funded with $8,000 in prize money for all Bracket classes, will have livestream coverage and will be hosted by Hooked On OC.”
Photo Essay: One Scary View From Point Pleasant Beach
Photo Essay: OPA Teams Soar In Point Pleasant Beach
Tiki Lee’s Shootout On The River Poker Run Almost Sold Out; Shootout And Kilo Run Registration Open