Yes, this announcement is rather early being that the 2024 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout is about 10 months away, but that’s how eager a Norway-based powerboat racing team is about bringing its boat halfway across the world to participate in the Central Missouri top-speed competition.
The Valvoline Powerboat Racing Norway team is already planning its trip to the United States to compete in the 2024 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout. Photos courtesy Eirik Danielsen
In a press release, Leah Martin, the Shootout’s director, stated that Valvoline Powerboat Racing Norway has already reached out to plan its participation in the event that is scheduled for August 24-25, 2024. Martin said the team is going to ship its Twister 24 catamaran, which is powered by a single Mercury Racing 450R engine and was rigged and modified by Braaten Offshore Racing, for compete in the prestigious 36th annual event.
Led by team owner and veteran driver Per Taraldsen, Valvoline Powerboat Racing Norway brings a wealth of experience to the table, according to the release. With seven national championships, a Nordic championship, and two world speed records under his belt (one in F4 and one in Formula 2), Taraldsen is highly regarded by racers from around the globe. He will be joined by his nephew and co-pilot, Eirik Danielsen, in the 24-foot cat, creating a formidable team thanks to Danielsen’s offshore and circuit racing experience.
Adding a touch of femininity to the team is Oline Nordli, a 21-year-old powerboat racer from Tvedestrand, the powerboat capital of Norway, according to the release. Nordli, who currently races an offshore 3B Twister with a 115-hp Mercury XS outboard, has an impressive list of championships to her name, including being the current European and Nordic champion, and her experience is expected to be invaluable with the team’s testing at Lake of the Ozarks. The team also is working with propeller whiz Dave Dewald of Dewald Props in Pennsylvania to customize a propeller specifically for the competition.
For the Shootout, the Valvoline Powerboat Racing Norway team, which takes pride in its meticulous preparation and attention to detail as well as its extensive testing program, has a goal to exceed 120 mph on the three-quarter-mile course. The only previous Twister that’s participated in the event was a 24-footer owned by Southern California performance boater John Caparell, who ran the single Mercury Racing 300R-powered boat to a top speed of 100 mph in 2020.
The team’s participation in the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout presented by Performance Boat Center holds a special meaning for Taraldsen, who, in April 2021, tragically lost his best friend and mentor, Rolf Magne Sunde, to cancer. Sunde was a respected powerboat racer and engine tuner who had a deep love for the United States. In honor of his late friend, Taraldsen will compete in Sunde’s race suit and helmet, creating a special tribute to a man who absorbed everything he could about racing in the USA.
“We are excited to be heading to the Shootout at Lake of the Ozarks, and we will be well-prepared,” Taraldsen said. “This event has always been a dream for me, and it holds a special significance as we race in memory of Rolf. We are dedicated to giving our best and making our mark in this prestigious competition.”
It’s interest from teams in Norway and beyond, not to mention the growing amount of competitors stateside, that fuels Martin and the Shootout committee to continue to raise the bar.
“We are thrilled to attract racers, from all over the world, to Lake of the Ozarks,” Martin said. “We are looking forward to 2024 to be another record-setting year.”
Coverage Of The 2023 Lake Of The Ozarks Shootout
Record-Setting Performances Close Out The 35th Lake Of The Ozarks Shootout
Day One Highlights From The 2020 Lake Of The Ozarks Shootout
Gallery Of The Week: Another Awe-Inspiring Arendal Poker Run
Photo Essay: Looking Back At Norway’s ‘Spectacular’ Arendal Poker Run
Norway’s Strømøy Becomes First Woman To Win F1 H2O Race
Norway-Based Sudrheim Offshore Racing Team Coming To Class 1