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Skater Building New 400R-Powered 318, Orders ROS Outboards For 368

Ordered by a longtime Skater Powerboats customer who already owns the Douglas, Mich., custom boat builder’s 24-, 32- and 40-foot catamarans, a second new Skater 318 catamaran is in production and will be powered by twin Mercury Racing Verado 400R engines.

“We’re building the hull and deck for the next 318 now—they pretty much done, we just have to do a little sanding and pop it in the booth paint booth,” said Tony Cutsuries, the national sales manager for Skater Powerboats. “Then it will be ready for rigging. The scheduled delivery date is June 30.”

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Another Verado 400R outboard engine-powered Skater 318 cat will join Steve Lane’s 31-footer (above) on the water this summer. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

The first Skater 318 cat with a pair of the popular 400-hp outboards recently was delivered to owner Steve Lane in Toms River, N.J. Thanks to relatively warm weather in the area, Lane already has been able to run his 31-footer for several times on Barnegat Bay.

In another Skater catamaran/Mercury Racing Verado outboard development, Cutsuries reported that he ordered a pair of ROS (Race Offshore) 400-hp Verado-based outboards from the Fond du Lac, Wis., high-performance marine engine company. Those engines will be installed on a new Skater 368 catamaran purchased by former offshore racer Matt Rice. It is the first set of ROS 400 engines, which were developed for offshore racing’s popular X-Cat Series overseas, to be sold in the United States.

Skater’s purchase agreement with Mercury Racing includes a stipulation that the boat will compete in at least one offshore race. (The engines do not come with warranties.) The most likely events for that to happen, according to Cutsuries, will be either the 2016 Offshore Powerboat Association World Championships or the 2017 OPA-sanctioned Lake Race.

The 36-foot catamaran is almost ready to be pulled from the molds. “We’re going to be able to cut this 368 really low, much lower than usual,” said Cutsuries. “It’s going to be really cool.”

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