With the first offshore race of the 2013 season—the Offshore Super Series “Smokin’ the Sound” event April 27-28 in Biloxi, Miss.—just a few weeks away, business is better than its been in several years for Kinetic Animation in Sarasota, Fla. That’s according to Ryan Beckley, the offshore racer who owns the design and graphics company that specializes in dressing offshore raceboats with everything from vinyl stickers to complete wraps.
“We have four boats in the shop right now, and there are three more about to show up,” said Beckley. “I was here till 10 last night.”
Among Beckley’s current projects is Cat 5 Offshore Racing/Broadco, a canopied 39-foot Marine Technology, Inc., catamaran that began its life as an offshore raceboat but most recently was used as a pleasure-and-poker-run boat. Reportedly gutted and completely re-rigged at Real Fast Marine in Washington, N.C., the boat is powered by twin 900-hp Scorpion Racing engines and slated to run in the Extreme class of the Offshore Powerboat Association series. Kinetic Animation also is handling the graphics for the team’s two trucks and trailer.
On the Stock-class side of offshore racing, Beckley is dressing up a pair of 32-foot Doug Wright catamarans, one owned by world champion Gary Ballough and the other owned by Chris Schoenbohn, Beckley’s racing partner. Beckley also is dressing up his own 30-foot Skater catamaran for a client in California who plans to run under the Double Edge Motorsports umbrella.
Beckley also is in the process of wrapping two Powerboat P1 Superstock USA Panther boats: team Garmin and team Livorsi. “We may also be getting the Myco boat this week,” he said.
Beckley said that while the work for each boat ranges from simple stripes and numbers to complete graphic wraps, the surge in business has him optimistic for the growth in the sport this season.
“I see the beginnings of a turnaround in offshore racing right now,” he said. “I used to be really busy this time of year, but I haven’t been this busy for at least three years. Like Jason Johnson (of speedonthewater.com) said in his column this week, there are a lot of bright spots in boat racing right now.”
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