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P1 and the OPA enter into offshore racing partnership

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Powerboat P1 have teamed up with the Offshore Powerboat Association (OPA) to create the APBA / UIM Offshore World Championship Race Series in the US next season.

OPA has been operating since 2003 and has run over 120 offshore events, this year they have organised races in New Jersey, on Lake Ozark in Missouri, Ocean City in Maryland, St Clair and Traverse City in Michigan, on Fall River in Massachusetts and their season will culminate with their World Championship in Englewood, Florida.

The aim of the partnership will be to strengthen the future of offshore racing in the US by providing an expanded series consisting of 6 races, with 3 venues each in the Northern and Southern States.

Ed “Smitty” Smith who runs the OPA series said:

Our goal was always to further the sport of Offshore.
We now have a unique opportunity to unite the offshore race teams in a way that has been missing for a long time.
Am I excited?

That would be an understatement!

Speaking from the Powerboat P1 office in Orlando, Chief Executive Azam Rangoonwala commented:

In our initial discussions with the OPA, we have identified a number of areas where we believe a partnership could deliver significant results in terms of the profile of the sport as well as commercially.
P1 has been involved in offshore racing since 2003 and staged race events in 18 countries.
Partnerships are at the heart of our business and our aim is always to create events that excite and entertain, ensuring enjoyment for spectators and TV audiences together with sponsor value and real economic impact for the host venues.

Mark Wheeler, President of the APBA added:

This new partnership is an exciting one for the future of offshore powerboat racing in this country and we welcome these ongoing discussions.

An announcement regarding 2019 race dates and venues is scheduled for next month.

With today’s news that Darren Nicholson and Peter McGrath will be racing ‘222 Offshore’ in the rival (non UIM) Super Boat International series next season against boats such as the Dubai Victory Team, 2019 is looking like a bumper year for Offshore in the States.

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John Moore

John raced Offshore UIM Class 3 in the 1980’s & 1990’s.
He served as the Cowes Torquay Cowes Event Director for 4 years, including running the 50 th Anniversary Event in 2010.
He has recently organised 4 British Offshore races under UKOPRA sanction.
He is the Editor of Powerboat Racing World.

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