OPA and P1 Announce Their Four of Six Venues for 2019

OPA and P1 Announce Their Four of Six Venues for 2019

In a joint press release from December 4, the promoters of the Offshore Powerboat Association (OPA Racing) and Powerboat P1 announced their first four of six anticipated venues for the upcoming 2019 offshore racing season, all to be run under the famed American Power Boat Association (APBA). The venues and dates are:

  • Cocoa Beach, FL: May 17-19 – Thunder on Cocoa Beach
  • Lake of the Ozarks, MO: May 31-June 2 – The Lake Race
  • Sarasota, FL: July 5-7– Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix Festival
  • St. Clair, MI: July 26-28 – St. Clair River Classic

The two organizations announced their collaboration in late October, 2018 and together, their key aim is to “strengthen the future of racing in the United States by delivering an expanded, cohesive, world-class race series split equally between northern and southern states.”

OPA President Ed “Smitty” Smith said, “Our principal goal is quite simply to further develop the sport of Offshore and, working with Powerboat P1, we now have the opportunity to unite the race teams in a way that has been missing for a long time. We plan to announce the remaining two race venues later this month and then everyone can look forward to a new and exciting six-race championship in 2019.”

Powerboat P1’s chief executive Azam Rangoonwala added, “We have identified a number of important areas where we believe the partnership will deliver significant results commercially and also in terms of the sport’s organisation and profile. Our aim is always to stage events that excite and entertain, ensuring enjoyment for spectators and TV audiences with sponsor value and a real economic impact for the host venues.”

The Thunder on Cocoa Beach offshore races will be heading into its 10th year and Executive Director, Kerry Bartlett said, “We are excited to be the start of a new offshore racing series with more international teams and we will continue to welcome teams and fans who have made our race so popular. We would also like to express our deepest gratitude to (Super Boat International’s) John and Deana Carbonell for their support and friendship over the past nine years. It has been an honor to work with them.”

Looking forward to its 35th season in 2019, the Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix Festival‘s Director Lucy Nicandri believes everybody will benefit from the collaboration. “This is something that the sport has needed for a long time and it will be a ‘win-win’ for race venues, site and team sponsors, fans and most of all for the race teams around the world who compete in the series.”

The final two venues have yet to be announced.