One of the best parts of Powerboat Nation is having the opportunity to meet some of the best people in boating and making a great number of friends that are pure hard core power boaters. So when one of our friends decides he wants to make or leave his mark on performance boating and we get to take that journey with him, I’m not sure whose more jacked up about his boat, us or him?
Whether you’ve heard the name or not there is a player in the game of high performance boating that is cut from a different cloth. Simply put there seems to be no limits to how far this person will go to raise the performance bar on his 40SS Skater, one of the world’s finest performance boats. His name is Jeff Asbell, a well spoken professional in the business of construction and disaster response. Jeff has been racing in one form or fashion his whole life, and while his boating experience started in a modest power boat like most of us, the evolution up to high speed high horsepower offshore catamarans was quite rapid.
Although I know a lot of people that are driven, Jeff is one of those guys that when he says he is going to make something happen, it happens. He really doesn’t accept the words “NO” or “Can’t” without requiring a damn good explanation. Prior to making his transition from the V-bottom ranks to a high performance Catamaran, Jeff did his homework. Before long he was off to visit Skater Nation’s Skater Nation | The Last Powerboat You’ll Ever Need To Own own Tommy Hofstetter. Tommy had a 40SS in stock with Chief Performance 1200’s ready to go and the rest of that is mere history or should I say, just the start of a new history. Jeff spent the better part of last year putting in 175 boating hours and 35000 tow miles on this Skater 40SS in just 5 months
While 99% of us would have been ecstatic with this combination Jeff is of those people we call the “One Percenters” . The type of guy that less than perfection just seems like failure. The burning desire to improve upon what he had could not be tamed and it wasn’t long before Jeff was back at Skater working with Peter on the goal to make some changes to his boat and bring it closer to the ultimate ride for him.
Unfortunately there was one problem, “TIME”! Jeff wanted his boat done before the Jacksonville Poker Run. Peter told him “get the boat to me and I’ll make it happen”. Skater removed the ski slope style rear tail section over the tunnel extension and added more convenient boarding steps. With the planned added horsepower Skater added knife style edges to the chine for improved high speed handling. The new engines were also going to require improved cooling and water flow so Skater added their water pickups. After these modifications, it was off to visual imagination VISUAL IMAGINATION INC, PO BOX 74, PECULIAR, MO 64078 who spent more than 1000 man hours laying down what will become one of 2013’s most stunning paint jobs. The paint design was a collaboration between Jeff and Mark Morris who created a visual sensation. Next the boat was treated to the comforts of Craig Ellis, owner of APPEARANCEPRODUCTSINC.COM upholstery. Jeff sketched his design thoughts and Craig brought them to life in a highly stylized and comfortable cockpit design.
Now with looks and handling under way, the time had come to put the 1200’s out to pasture and add the kind of power that would really let this boat put its money where its mouth is. After really doing his homework, Jeff turned to Brad Smith of Smith Power engines in Joplin, MO. Brad has been building some of the fastest most reliable power plants in a number of Skaters in the country.
Together the two men collaborated to build new 1725HP power plants, make some changes to the gearing in order to get the boat ready to lay down some big numbers and make a real statement to the power and passion of a committed boater, armed with a Brad Smith Powered Skater gleaming with Visual Imagination.