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The Match Game

It is kind of funny, but if you asked me this summer, last month, yesterday, tomorrow or next week what my favorite boat I came across this year was, I’d likely rattle off 10 to 15 boats in 60 seconds and the list would probably be different each time.

matching lickitysplit sotw

Lickity Split’s Toon, a 31-foot PlayCraft Boats pontoon, was built to match JP O’Donoghue’s DCB M35 Widebody Lickity Split, hence the custom SportChassis pulling it. Photo courtesy Brad Kloepfer

But that’s because I either wrote about or climbed aboard in person—between the Miami International Boat ShowDesert Storm Poker Run1000 Islands Charity Poker RunBig Cat Poker RunLake of the Ozarks Shootout and Key West Poker Run—dozens of jaw-dropping boats. In fact, I’d liken this to one of the best years I can remember in terms of production variety, new model introductions and outstanding projects.

The boats I’ve been able to check out from the likes of Cigarette, DCBDeep ImpactFountainMTIMysticNor-TechOuterlimitsSkaterStatementSunsation and more were pretty amazing to say the least. But let’s get back to the question about my favorite boat—never mind I can’t answer that. Because if I had an open checkbook and could pick any boat I came across this year, I’d have to say I’d want two and I’d want them to match, which seems to be the trend (depending on your pay grade).

matching mtimiami sotw

Both MTI offshore catamarans on display at the 2017 Miami International Boat Show—the 52-foot Spooled Up and the 48-foot Vengeful behind it—ended up with complementary boats by the end of the year.

MTI has done it well over the last few years pairing MTI-V 42 models with several customers’ 48- and 52-foot catamarans. And last year, the Wentzville, Mo., company did their first “mini me” boat—building the Black Diamond Express outboard-powered 340X sport cat to match Black Diamond, Derek Wachob’s 52-foot canopied beauty.

Somehow two of MTI’s customers took it to different levels this year —Washington’s Craig Hargreaves and New York’s Johnny O’Loughlin.

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