Photos by Simon Trumper
Two powerboats—both hulls coincidentally designed by the legendary Ocke Mannerfelt—set speed records in the fifth Ocean Cup “Rum Run” race that took the boats on a 112-mile course from Huntington Beach, CA, to Catalina Island.
Veteran offshore powerboat racers Nigel Hook and Jay Johnson drove their Lucas Oil-sponsored 48-foot SilverHook craft, while driver Leigh Ann Bauman and owner/throttleman Chris Reindl piloted their 24′ Bat Boat. The UIM- and APBA-approved course started and finished at the Huntington Beach Pier in Southern California, and raced around Catalina Island.
Owner/throttleman Hook and driver Johnson finished with a record of 1 hour, 19 minutes and 28 seconds in UIM’s 30- to 50-foot Class; Bauman and Reindl finished with a record of 1 hour, 57 minutes and 40 seconds in UIM’s 30-foot and Under Class.
Hook told Speedboat that Reindl’s Bat Boat performed “incredibly” for a hull less than half the size of his own boat, which is powered by twin Mercury Racing 1350/1550 engines. Known as Early Detection, the Bat Boat is powered by an inboard Ilmor MV8 570 engine by Reindl Powerboats. “I ran the course in my big boat, and when I saw the speeds that they were doing, I couldn’t believe it. It was a tricky course, and Leigh Ann did fantastic.”
A third boat—a 48’ Apisa designed by Larry Smith—had been registered, but a faulty bearing discovered during a test run prevented them from participating, according to Hook.
Although the Rum Run event is the SilverHook team’s only race scheduled for 2020, Hook said he’s proud to announce the 2021 Ocean Cup run, which will take place the first weekend of October, as part of the Great Pacific Airshow.