Although the project took longer than expected to complete, Miami’s Frank Areces can’t wait to show off Ruffled Feathers, his restored 2002 32-foot Douglas Marine/Skater Powerboats catamaran, at Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks this week.
Frank Areces’ 32-foot Skater Ruffled Feathers recently was restored by a talented and experienced group. Photos courtesy Frank Areces
After testing and dialing in the boat on Saturday, Sunday and this morning, Areces and his son, Michael, left South Florida this evening en route to the Central Missouri lake, which is hosting both the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout and Super Cat Fest this week, and should be hanging out with friends and having fun in their “new” ride by Wednesday.
“The boat came out better than I ever expected—the detail that was given to it is second to none and only found in top-shelf performance boats,” said Areces, a former offshore racer who is a partner in the law firm Areces & Rodriguez, P.A. “The whole crew at Chief Performance in Fort Lauderdale was so helpful finding parts, designing the dash to my liking, rebuilding the engines and much more.
“I also owe Chris Roper of Rock-n-Roll Rigging greatly for his efforts in getting the boat done in time for us to leave for Lake of the Ozarks,” he continued. “Without Chris’ help, it wouldn’t have happened. He jumped in and finished the gauges, controls and electronics, and he installed all of the LED lighting and other bling we added. He’s probably one of the best riggers I’ve ever seen and he’s really conscientious about his work and his customers.”
Check out the slideshow above for even more images of Ruffled Feathers.
Powered by a refreshed (and detuned to 825 hp aside) pair of 598-cubic-inch motors Areces used in his Cigarette Racing 38 Top Gun—the Pollo Tropical boat he drove to the P3 World Championship in 2005—the 32-footer was a complete pleasure to drive according to Areces. Over the past six months, the Skater was dismantled and updated with a new interior, a blue carbon-fiber dash from Innotech Products, instrumentation modifications, a 10-inch multi-touch widescreen Garmin GPSMAP 7610 and more. Chief Performance, which handled the engine rebuilds, also installed a new exhaust system and Mercury Racing No. 6 drives.
“From the engines, drives and transmissions to the way it gets right on plane, the boat ran as flawlessly as it looks,” Areces said. “I thought it might take a little more getting used to going from the Cigarette to the Skater, but I got the hang of it quick. It’s an amazing ride. I was truly fortunate to have the ‘A Team’ on my side.”
Areces said he is not planning to run the Skater in the Shootout—“I’d need to get a lot more seat time in the boat first”—but that he’ll be enjoying everything else the lake has to offer this week.
“I have to thank from my brother from another mother—Albert Echemendia—for all of his help,” added Areces, who also thanked Jason Ventura of Brand X Hi-Performance Marine for his support. “Finally I need to thank my son, Michael, for continuously coming up with ideas to add bling to the boat that forced me to spend more money and created more work for everyone involved.”
For more photos and to keep up with Areces and the Skater, follow the Ruffled Feathers Poker Run Team Facebook page.