As it happens, speedonthewater.com is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. That inspired Jason Johnson, my speedonthewater.com co-publisher and fellow offshoreonly.com columnist, to suggest I present a list of the top go-fast boating news 10 stories of the last 10 years. And it seemed like a good idea. Yet with almost 6,000 stories published on the site since 2009, it was easier suggested than done.
Here are 10 high-performance powerboating new stories that moved the needle during the past 10 years. Photos courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
What makes it so very hard is that I know I will leave out something big. So I apologize in advance for at least one glaring omission in this otherwise brilliant piece of comprehensive work. (Yes, I’m joking.)
What follows in no particular order is my list of the top 10 stories of the past 10 years. Of course, Johnson and I have written multiple pieces on each of the subjects you’ll find below. Big stories are dynamic. As such, they tend to continually evolve.
Here goes nothing. Or something. Either way, I’m diving in.
Mercury Racing Launches The QC4v Engine Series
Mercury Racing’s quad-cam four-valve turbocharged engines series set a new standard in high-performance marine power.
In 2010, Mercury Racing unveiled its first 1,350-hp quad-cam four-valve twin turbocharged engine at the Miami International Boat Show. And if you don’t believe it changed the high-performance marine engine world forever, just ask an independent marine engine builder how his new engine business is these days. Since the release of the 1350, the Fond du Lac, Wis., company has added several models to the QC4v series, from the naturally aspirated 860 to the 1550/1350 and 1100/1350 dual-calibration offerings. They have become the standard for big-power stern-drive catamarans and V-bottoms. The exception to this is the supercharged 700 SCi—another Mercury Racing product.
Cigarette Racing Team Partners With AMG
The marketing arrangement between Cigarette Racing Team and Mercedes-AMG has produced some stunning boat-and-car combos.
For 12 years, Cigarette Racing Team has enjoyed a unique marketing partnership with Mercedes-AMG. I can already hear the groans coming the Cigarette haters out there—and for reasons I’ll never fully understand there are a lot of them. Yes, it has been a marketing partnership between two luxury brands rather than an in-depth technology partnership. But according to Cigarette’s owner Skip Braver—you know, the guy who pays the bills—the co-branding relationship has been beneficial for both parties. And here’s a fact: While many other go-fast boat companies have tried cross-marketing partnerships, none have lasted as long and has the high-profile/status of the Cigarette-AMG relationship. And while there are plenty of would-be marketing geniuses out there who scoff at them, I think the Cigarette-AMG boat-and-car combos displayed every year at the Miami International Boat Show are spectacular and add value to the event itself. The first Cigarette-AMG boat was unveiled in 2010 and powered by—you guessed it—the first pair of Mercury Racing 1350s.