Ron Szolack, a well-known member of the performance-boating community and de facto Skater Powerboats dealer who splits his time between Michigan and Florida, estimates he has owned a dozen Skater 368 catamarans with a variety of engine packages. But with a reported achieved top speed of 170 mph, his new 36-footer, which is powered by twin Mercury Racing 1100 engines and is still currently for sale—as are all the boats he orders—could be his favorite.
Szolack’s new Skater 368 is six inches wider in the cockpit than a “standard” 36-footer (click image to enlarge). Photos courtesy Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
“The acceleration is incredible,” said Szolack, who ran the six-seat catamaran in last week’s Florida Powerboat Club Miami Boat Show Poker Run. “It throws you back in your seat. John Tomlinson of TNT Custom Marine ran it before the Miami Boat Show and he was really impressed with it. And he’s the best throttleman in the world.
“It’s a great boat with the 1100s,” he added. “And the two-year warranty and 89-octane fuel requirement make it even better.”
Said Tomlinson, “It was good with 36-inch-pitch props and accelerated like a rocket. I had people on board and choppy water so I only ran it up to like 144 mph or so, and then dropped it off at the show. But it was a fun boat to run.”
Szolack had the Douglas, Mich., custom high-performance boat builder widen the 368’s cockpit by six inches. (The Skater 368 has the same cockpit dimensions and 65-inch tunnel width as the 388 model, though its sponsons are narrower.) Szolack said the 368 remains his favorite hull for a number of reasons.
Said Szolack, “It’s a great boat with the 1100s. And the two-year warranty and 89-octane fuel requirement make it even better.”
“It’s a great all-around boat with a little more space in the cockpit and a cool one-piece windshield,” he said. “You can get good speeds, 133 or 134 mph, out of it with twin 700s. It’s easy to transport and tends to be faster than a 388 because it weighs 500 to 700 pounds less.
“It was really wonderful during the poker run,” he continued. “When we took it offshore, the water got pretty rough and it flew extremely flat and straight.”