Can a single-engine, West Coast custom 29-footer spark a sportboat revival in the Midwest and on the East Coast? Photo courtesy/copyright Lavey Craft Motorsports.
Like most West Coast custom powerboat builders, Lavey Craft was decimated by the recession of 2008 and the lean years that followed. Orders for the Southern California company’s award-winning V-bottoms, deck boat and catamaran simply stopped coming, so Chris and Jeff Camire—the brothers who owned the company—did what they had to do to stay afloat. They took on service and repairs and even detailing work to keep their doors open.
About two years ago, Jeff Camire left the company. A year later, Dave Sampson joined Chris Camire as a partner and the outfit was reborn as Lavey Craft Motorsports. They still owned the tooling for all of the Lavey Craft models, but out of necessity they sought business opportunities beyond boat building. That led them to the fiberglass parts fabrication world, in particular making aftermarket body kits for the wildly popular Polaris RZR off-road vehicles. The move made perfect sense as Lavey Craft’s reputation for fiberglass work—showcased in the boat-builder’s products during the years—was unmatched.
With an upcoming new 29 NuEra V-bottom closed-deck sportboat scheduled to be ready for the 2017 season, Sampson and Camire hope to be headed back to the sportboat world, albeit one careful step at a time. The project actually is a collaboration between the boat builder and John Mosetti, a Texas-based powerboat industry veteran who originally hails from the East Coast, and his brother, Richard.