Total Monster Speeds to Hat-trick
Two-time defending champion boat Total Monster completed the hat-trick of wins at the Carib Great Race when it arrived in Scarborough ahead of Mr Solo Too yesterday morning. The 46’ Skater catamaran completed the new 116-mile course in an hour and 25 minutes, three minutes ahead of Mr Solo (1:28:03), while 95 mph D class […]
Two-time defending champion boat Total Monster completed the hat-trick of wins at the Carib Great Race when it arrived in Scarborough ahead of Mr Solo Too yesterday morning.
The 46’ Skater catamaran completed the new 116-mile course in an hour and 25 minutes, three minutes ahead of Mr Solo (1:28:03), while 95 mph D class entrant Bacchanal was a surprise third place finisher in 1:45:01. Also winning their classes were Chris Gone Wild (80mph), Outlaw (70mph) and Pum Pum Conqueror (60mph).
Speaking afterwards, Bell said a prepared vessel and a skilled team were the keys to success on what was a tough course made more challenging by choppy water conditions. He said the conditions in the Bocas were particularly challenging, but noted that this is the part of the course which allows the competitors to show what they’re made of.
Co-navigator Daniel Peake also said the water conditions this year were the worst the team had seen in five years, noting six to 12-foot high waves and eight to ten-second hang times. Bell said the boat’s preparation team of Nicholas Gomes, Marcel Carrington and Robin Geoffroy deserved just as much credit as himself, driver Sabeeney, Peter Peake and Daniel Peake.
“A rough race tells you a lot about the quality of a boat’s preparation team,” he said. “The conditions were really abusive for the onboard crew, but we’re human, we can take it. For the engine to hold together under that kind of strain, it takes a lot of hard work before the race…It’s like driving on a road full of pot holes at 100mph. A lot of boats are going to fall apart.”
In fact, the conditions were so rough that of the 26 boats that faced the starter in Trinidad, only 11 were able to make it to Tobago. Tragedy was avoided earlier in the day when the Sheriff Lobo crew of Justin Lennard and Shameel Mohammed rescued Rug Rat’s Dale Mayers and Andrew Savary after their boat, a 21” Bowen, sank along the North Coast.
“We were driving along and saw two people in the water,” recalled Mohammed. “We asked them where their boat was and they said it was underwater…The swell was so big you could barely see them. They had been waving to the passing helicopters but nobody noticed them…We saved two people’s lives.”
“It’s fantastic what they did,” said Bell. “It showed the camaraderie that power boat racing in T&T has become famous for.” Among the small group of finishers were 35-year Great Race veterans, the Tardieu brothers, who placed second in 80 mph E Class and seventh overall on White Heat III.
The Total Monster crew are, however, already looking towards next year, saying they plan to come back even stronger although they have no major plans to modify the vessel, which is powered by two 3,000 hp engines.
Mr Solo Too, the only other vessel to have won more Great Races than anyone else in the history of the 47-year-old event, including two hat-tricks of wins, and a run of six straight wins, finished three minutes adrift of the winners.
The 40’ MTI Catamaran, driven by veteran Ken Charles, navigator Gino Fusco and throttleman Darin Marshal, was never really in with a chance of catching Total Monster though, since it was behind the eventual winners and the new boys in Vortex for much on the race until Vortex broke down.
Bacchanal, a 38’ Fountain with Justin Decle (driver) Wayne Hannock (throttleman) at the helm, finished in one hour and forty-five minutes.
Chris Gone Wilder took the D Class Trophy and Pum Pum Conqueror won the E class.
Trinidad and Tobago Powerboat Association chairman Garth Marshall admitted this year’s race was particularly challenging because of the rough water conditions off Trinidad’s North Coast. He said, however, that the TTPBA continues to improve the event annually, especially in terms of the types of vessels that enter the competition and making the event more spectator friendly. He also commended the members of Team Extreme, who gave up their chances of winning the race to assist the Rugrat team after their boat sank.
2015 Carib Great Race Overall Results
Mr Solo Too 1:28:03
Chris Gone Wilder 2:02:01
White Heat 2:12:36
Chris Gone Wild 2:33:00
A Class (130 mph)
2. Mr Solo Too
DNF: Vortex, Paramount, Fire One.
B Class (120mph)
DNF: Jumbi, Stampede
DNF: Global Warmer
D Class (95mph)
2. Chris Gone Wilder
DNF: Fast Track, Ultra Rush, Sherriff Lobo, Papi Chulo
E Class (80mph)
2. White Heat III
DNF: Energiza, Alien, Hammertime, Hero III
F Class (70mph)
1. Chris Gone Wild
DNF: Rite Formula, , Extreme Measures
E Class (60 mph)
1. Pum Pum Conqueror
DNF: Infusion IV, Rug Rat, Matrix
Source: Trinidad Guardian