27 February 2016
Covering 71% of the earth’s surface, the world’s oceans are both beguiling and intimidating. Snuggly secured in an offshore powerboat cockpit, on top of 2,000bhp, O1 Challengers will participate in the fastest and most elitist form of endurance racing. They will race in a round trip from Miami to Bimini at average speeds of 120mph, alternating between kissing the waves and flying 40ft through the air, which will be both testing and uncomfortable. Fancy beating the race record? That will require 145mph and perfect weather conditions.
With no equivocation, offshore powerboat racing is competing in the big leagues. The 3 time F1 Champion Niki Lauda compared it to “driving a Formula One car across a ploughed field”.
Reliant on skill and teamwork in the cockpit, it is also dependent on suitable weather conditions and a high degree of luck. Departing from Miami in the morning in boats between 38-48ft long, if all goes well competitors will be back in Miami for lunch.
Authorisation for the race will be required from the US Coast Guard, and all possible safety measures will be on-hand during the event. This will include dive rescue, doctors and a fully equipped medical team. After the chill of the Arctic we would like to think that competitors will be able to enjoy some winter sun during their time in Miami, but this is the penultimate event, and those lagging in the competition will need to pick up points.