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Photo Essay: Testing In Cocoa Beach

Though the first two races of the day at Thunder On Cocoa, the season-opener for the American Power Boat Association Offshore National Championship Series, are in the books and the third is underway, some 56 teams reacquainted themselves with the Northeast Florida venue yesterday. This weekend’s marine forecast for predominantly calm seas has so far held up so the multi-turn Cocoa Beach course should be fast.

Not seen on the racecourse since 2019, the New Zealand-based Pro Floors Racing team will be back in Super Cat-action in today’s final race in Cocoa Beach, Fla. Photos by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

Toward the end of yesterday’s testing and session, the wind picked up and created a few bumps and holes and the afternoon breeze is expected to return today. The current forecast for the day has the seas pegged at 1 to 3 feet.

But here’s the thing about Cocoa Beach, the thing that makes it so popular with East Coast surfers: Conditions can turn quickly. And if you ask any racer about the venue, you’ll hear that it’s always rougher than it looks.

“Today is looking like bigger water with windier conditions, which should make for a true rough-water Cocoa Beach race,” said Tyler Miller of the M CON team, which will compete against six other Super Cat teams in the final contest of the day.

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Check out the action from yesterday’s Thunder On Cocoa Beach testing session.

There are five races on tap today and offshore racing fans can catch all the action live on the P1 Offshore Facebook page. Here’s a quick look at the schedule:

9 a.m.—Bracket 500, 600 and 700
• 10:15 a.m.—Stock V, Mod V, Bracket 300 and 400
• 11:45 a.m.—Super Stock
• 1:25 p.m.—Class 1
• 2:45 p.m.—Super Cat

With six teams in the mix, Class 1 will field in largest fleet in seven years.

Editor’s note: A veteran offshore racing reporter and award-winning marine writer, contributing editor Eric Colby is covering the Cocoa Beach event. Look for a complete report featuring images from speedonthewater.com chief photographer Pete Boden on the site by the end of the day.

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