After a test session earlier today on Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks, the team at Marine Technology Inc., in Wentzville, Mo., is one step closer to entering its first MTI 390X in the brand-new 450R Factory Stock class, the offshore racing catamaran class that was added last fall to the rulebook of the Offshore Powerboat Association—an American Power Boat Association member-organization—for the 2021 season.
Earlier today, MTI’s Taylor and Randy Scism tested the company’s first 390X catamaran built to compete in the new 450R Factory Stock class. Photo by Rob Rich
MTI founder Randy Scism and his daughter, Taylor—MTI’s client relations manager who will be driving the new canopied catamaran powered by twin stock Mercury Racing 450R engines alongside celebrated throttleman John Tomlinson of TNT Custom Marine in Miami—were able to get some seat time in the boat today and were plenty excited to talk about it afterward.
“I have to admit, after getting to run the boat for the first time, I’m excited to go racing,” said Taylor Scism, who plans to test the boat with Tomlinson in South Florida leading up to Thunder On Cocoa Beach, the season-opener for the second-year, six-race APBA Offshore National Championship Series backed the OPA and Powerboat P1. “I wasn’t sure how sitting in the enclosed cockpit was going to feel on the water, but it was pretty spacious and I was actually more comfortable inside once the hatch closed than I thought I would be. It was different mainly because it’s harder to tell how fast you’re going when there’s no wind or noise. That part is going to take some time to get used to.
“We didn’t get that much time in the boat today because we had to meet a client this afternoon—we mainly wanted to make sure all of the systems were working correctly before we left for Lake Havasu,” she added, referring to the MTI caravan headed to Lake Havasu City, Ariz., for this week’s Super Cat Fest West event and next week’s Desert Storm Poker Run. “Everything went well though and we can’t wait to start testing with JT. We have to wrap up a few things on the boat, then we’ll send it to Florida so we can test it a few times before Cocoa Beach.”
According to Randy Scism, MTI has several customers interested in racing in the class, but that they all want to see how the first boat turns out before fully committing.
“We’re hoping we get another boat on the course this season and we’ll see where things end up the following season,” he said. “This should be a fun class with the stock 450Rs. The coolest part to me is that someone can buy this boat and go pleasure boating one weekend and racing the next. With the reliability of the 450Rs and the boat’s setup, that is definitely possible.”
He added that he’s excited to see his daughter following in his offshore racing footsteps.
“I’m not nervous for her—her mom is nervous enough for the both of us,” he said with a laugh. “I just want to see Taylor have fun and learn some stuff. I think the racing will be good for her.”
Check out the slideshow above for a couple of more images of the new MTI 390X raceboat. Photos courtesy MTI
Taylor Scism, who was all smiles sitting in the cockpit as you can see in the inset image above, added that it was neat to see the full carbon-fiber boat develop from the lamination process to its current state with the protective canopy.
“To watch it go from pleasure boat hull to the full-blown raceboat that we ran today was pretty cool,” she added.
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