Offshore racer Nick Smith—son of OPA President Ed “Smitty” Smith—has been taking on more behind-the-scenes responsibilities for the nation’s premier sanctioning body this season. One very cool new component he’s added is the launch of a new series of video podcasts featuring offshore competitors, the first of which just debuted on YouTube.
In the debut episode of Offshore Live, Smith sat down with veteran racers Randy and Scott Schleuss, who compete in the #29 Typhoon in OPA’s ProStock Vee class. The pair reminisced about their exciting history on the course, discussed their racing strategies and ruminated about the future of the sport.
“Last year, the TV shows we did were really nice, but they were all about the big guys in offshore,” Smith tells Speedboat. “I come from the smaller classes and I hang with the smaller teams, and I felt bad. I’m a fan of a couple of podcasts, and I thought it would be a good thing for offshore—especially for some of the smaller teams who can’t afford airtime—to get a moment in the spotlight.”
Smith describes the new videos as “just lighthearted interviews to try to bring their personalities to the forefront.”
The first of these videos was posted this week, and more are in the works. They’re sure to keep offshore racing in the minds of fans who have had to endure the postponement of the current season to COVID-19, as well as the competitors themselves.
“These times are just insane,” Smith says. “Some guys are buried in work trying to make ends meet, and some are just praying that their states re-open for business soon. It’s all craziness at the moment. But most of them are committed to the season, and fortunately a lot of our guys didn’t get hurt too badly.”
OPA is currently planning to kick off the 2020 season with the Point Pleasant Beach Grand Prix in New Jersey Aug. 14-16, with races to follow in Cocoa Beach (Aug. 27-30) and Morehead, NC (Sept. 11-13), with the OPA Nationals in Fort Myers Beach (Oct. 8-10) and the World Championships in Englewood, FL (Nov. 19-22).
Watch the video here: