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Tres Martin’s Safety Corner: Never Too Cool For School

Yesterday I interviewed Rick Bowling for a story that went live on speedonthewater.com and the home page of offshoreonly.com earlier today. Seems that Bowling is getting into the habit of taking his 37-foot Talon catamaran, Gone Again, to McCovey Cove in San Francisco Bay to check out the cove flotilla at Giants games. (You can read the story by clicking here.)


In July, Bowling and several other go-fast boat owners will take Martin’s course at Bowling’s vacation home on the shores of Lake Tahoe.

During the course of our conversation Bowling—a good friend since the mid-1990s—mentioned that he would be hosting and attending the Tres Martin Performance Boat School driving course at his vacation home in Carnelian Bay, Calif., on the shores of Lake Tahoe in early July. A seasoned performance-boat owner with 20 years of offshore racing experience, Bowling said he was looking forward to taking the course and seeing what Martin had to offer. He said he was confident that he would learn something useful.

“I’ve had a lot of really experienced people go through our course,” says Tres Martin, the school’s founder. “They always tell me the same thing: ‘I found the last 20 percent of the course to be invaluable.'”

In addition to the experienced go-fast owners he has coached through his class-room curriculum, Martin has instructed a number of industry folks including Fred Kiekhaefer, the former president of Mercury Racing, as well as Mercury Racing’s Mike Griffiths and—most recently—the company’s team of engineers. Key people at Dave’s Custom Boats, which includes the course with every new boat it sells, and other marine companies have gone through and gained from Martin’s program.

“I’ve had plenty of students with 10 to 20 years of experience who tell me, once the course is finished, ‘Now I know that I have a lot of bad habits I need to break.’ You may have a lot of experience, but not all experience is “good” experience. You can always learn more. You can always become a better operator.”

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Tres Martin’s Safety Corner