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Stancombe Announces Departure From Open-Cockpit Offshore Racing

Veteran throttleman Micheal Stancombe—the American Power Boat Association 2022 Sportsman of the Year award winner—announced his “departure from the thrilling world of open cockpit racing” in a press release on Sunday.

The throttleman for the Bracket 500-class XINSURANCE/Golf N Gator/TFR 30-foot Phantom, Micheal Stancombe is not planning to race in the open-cockpit class any longer. Photo by Peter Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

Known best for success in the Peppers Skater Powerboats canopied catamaran alongside his father and driver, George, and, more recently, as the throttleman of the JBS Racing MTI with owner/driver Jeff Stevenson and as one half of the successful Bracket 500-class Team Woody and then Turk Family Racing/XINSURANCE teams with longtime friend J.J. Turk, Stancombe expressed gratitude for the incredible experiences and friendships cultivated during his time in the Class 5 ranks.

“This decision, while bittersweet, comes after careful consideration and a desire to maintain my commitment to both Jeff (Stevenson) and the long-awaited return to racing with my dad in the Peppers 368 Skater,” said the big-hearted Stancombe, who ends up on the podium at most races, and, more importantly, always fosters a sense of camaraderie within the racing community. “I have to extend my heartfelt thanks to Chad Woody, Billy Shipley and Tom Woody of the Team Woody race family. I am deeply indebted to J.J. Turk, the Turk family, XINSURANCE and the extended network of racers, sponsors and fans for the unwavering support throughout my career.

“The decision to step away from Class 5 and open-cockpit racing is accompanied by a sense of anticipation for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead with the new JBS Offshore 466 Skater,” he added.

Although he won’t be racing in Bracket 500 next season, Micheal Stancombe—and his girlfriend, Julie Lahr—is planning to compete in two other classes next season. Photo by Jeff Helmkamp/Helmkamp Photos

Of course Stancombe, who has the unwavering support of his son, Dominic, and his girlfriend, Julie Lahr, will continue to champion Turk Family Racing and stay connected with the bracket racing community. In fact, he said he plans to support and advocate for stronger safety measures and be of service in other capacities.

Stancombe’s announcement came a week and a half after an incident in the first race of the Race World Offshore Key West World Championship in Key West, Fla. on Wednesday, Nov. 8, in which he and Turk were ejected after their boat collided with another team that spun out, leaving one racer seriously injured.

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