The penultimate event of the fourth annual Spartan Powerboat Club season, today’s Barnegat Bay Marina Fun Run and Open House attracted a 32-boat fleet of high-performance catamarans, V-bottom sportboats and center consoles and raised $6,500 for the nonprofit Autism Speaks organization. Del Flores, the president and founder of the New Jersey-based club, said he was delighted with the turnout for the event, which started and finished at the popular Garden State marina, and the generosity of the participants.
With the Barnegat Bay Marina Fun Run in the books, just one more event—a top-speed shootout on September 12—remains on the 2021 Spartan Powerboat Club schedule. Photos by Tim Sharkey copyright Sharkey Images.
“The support of our members is just amazing and heartfelt,” he said. “We don’t have a big club, but we do have a club that has big personality—and big hearts.”
During the event, the club paid tribute to fallen New Jersey powerboating community members Corey Molinari, Jeff Ackerman and Tom Healey. Just 18 years old, Molinari died in a nighttime boating accident in June. In late 2020, Ackerman, age 51, died at his home Boontown. The former vice-president of Marine Unlimited, Healey died at his home in Beverly. He was 53 years old.
“We honored three very good friends today that we tragically lost,” said Flores.
But the mood of today’s outing was far from somber and decidedly upbeat—and no one was more so than Flores. Though one event, the Velocity Powerboats-backed inaugural, three-quarter-mile Top Speed Shootout set for September 12, remains on the outfit’s schedule, he’s already looking ahead to next year’s Spartan Powerboat Club happenings.
Enjoy more images from today’s Barnegat Bay Marina Fun Run in the slideshow above.
“The 2022 season is going to be even better with more events,” he said. “And we’re going to branch out with events out of state.
“I love doing this,” he added. “It brings me great pleasure to surround myself with so many positive and supportive people. I’m truly blessed.”