Spurred on by Randy Sweers owner of Fastboats Marine Group and the Sailor-Jerry/AutoNation MTI offshore racing catamaran, the upcoming Super Cat Fest (Aug. 28-29) at Lake of the Ozarks in Central Missouri is putting together a special fundraiser for a very special friend from Illinois, Derek McCormick.
McCormick, who was diagnosed with throat cancer earlier this year, is well known in the community for hauling high-performance pleasure boats and offshore raceboats, including most recently Kenny Armstrong’s 48-foot MTI Phantom, the 2nd Amendment Offshore Racing Team’s 36-foot Spectre Powerboats catamaran and Sweers’ raceboat he campaigns to raise awareness for early detection of cancer. According to Super Cat Fest organizer Alvin Heathman, McCormick is one of those people everyone likes thanks to an “infectious smile,” so he didn’t need any convincing when Sweers suggested a fundraiser for McCormick at the event.
Fortunately so far, with help from Sweers and other influential performance boaters such as Windship MTI owner John Woodruff, McCormick is in a position to get some top-level treatment. Unfortunately for him it requires him to travel, which Sweers said he can’t afford.
“I don’t ever reach out to my friends for auction items like I have for this event that’s being organized for our friend Derek,” said Sweers, who is going to add some type of ride in his raceboat during the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout to the other auction items he’s donating such as signed memorabilia from NBA champion Richard Hamilton and racecar drivers Ryan Hunter-Reay and Martin Truex Jr. “But I felt like this was as good a time as any. Derek has always been the type of guy that if I needed anything he would be there and get it done. And I know he’s done that for a lot of people. He doesn’t have a lot of money and his earning potentially is down to nothing so now’s the time to raise some money since we all know he wouldn’t hesitate if the position was reversed.”
Heathman said there are some unique items on the auction list already, including a ride in an M3900 Mystic Powerboats luxury performance center console from Miami to Key West in the Florida Powerboat Club’s Key West Poker Run, a couple of five-day stays at 2nd Amendment owner Joe Vaughn’s villa at Palm Island Resort in Florida and a day of watching the Key West World Championships with Jim Lee and his friends on his 72-foot Hatteras. Also on the list is a feature article in an upcoming issue of Speed On The Water magazine and much more.
Heathman said for anyone who would like to donate to McCormick but won’t be at Super Cat Fest to contact him directly on Facebook.