July 5th-8th, the 29th Annual Suncoast Super Boat Grand Prix Festival will take place in Sarasota, Florida, where professional offshore race teams will compete in one of the biggest events of the year. Super Boat International (SBI) is the largest professional offshore racing sanctioning body in America, producing eight events through the year which attracts hundreds of thousands of fans and spectators to beachfront cities.
Super Boat racing in Sarasota
The Suncoast Grand Prix is one of the largest offshore powerboat races of the year which brings race teams from all around the United States and abroad. Racers travel from as far away as the Middle East and Europe to compete in SBI events. For this race event, some of the most exciting and competitive racing action takes place just offshore from the beaches of Lido Beach, Florida.
'The Sarasota race is always a very good race for us. The community really gets behind this event. The excitement starts the weekend before with various activities and continues to build throughout the week until the boats come for race weekend. When the boats arrive at Centennial Park which is just off 41st street, you can watch the excitement and the crowds build over the three days', comments John Carbonell, President of Super Boat International. 'The fans look forward to seeing the boats up close as the dry pits get really crowded in anticipation of the races on Sunday.' Thousands enjoy the food and activities as they watch the fastest boats in the world get craned in the water for testing.
Fans can expect some very exciting racing from every Super Boat class of boats. The Manufacturer Production and Vee bottom boats are typically the most recognizable boats that every day boaters, which consists over 70 million Americans, would see on a given weekend. The Super Stock outboard boats are a catamaran style with twin outboard engines. The biggest and fastest boats are the large 40’ - 50’ catamaran powerboats that have up to 3000 horsepower from a combined two engines. These Super Cat style boats have some of the most unique paint schemes and are often the fan favorites.These are the world’s fastest offshore boats which can reach speeds upwards of 200 mph.
Last year’s 28th Annual event left many lasting impressions. If it wasn’t a record crowd for the downtown parade, it was surely close. The streets were packed for blocks and it was 10 and 20 people deep in many points along the parade route. The parade consisted of the local fire and police boats along with the world’s best race boats. Also, Tropical Storm Debbie had come ashore a month earlier and displaced much of Lido Beach. So with some of the sand moved around, the beach was packed on race day Sunday with fans covering almost every square acre of beach. It appeared to be the largest crowd for any previous race.
15.00 Sarasota schedule of Events:
|Friday • July 5, 2013|
|9:00am||-||3:00pm||Registration: US Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla Bldg – Centennial Park|
|9:00am||-||3:00pm||Inspection: Centennial Park|
|12:00pm||-||6:00pm||Powerboats by the Bay: Centennial Park on Sarasota Bay, Food-Vendors Live Music|
|5:00pm||-||12:00am||Downtown Block Party: Main St. and Lemon Ave.|
|5:30pm||Staging of Parade: Centennial Park|
|7:00pm||Festival Parade of Boats: Main St. Downtown|
|Saturday • July 6, 2013|
|8:00 am||-||5:00pm||Fueling: Centennial Park on Sarasota Bay|
|8:30 am||Mandatory Drivers Meeting: Hyatt Regency Sarasota|
|10:00am||-||5:00pm||Registration: US Coast Guard Auiliary Flotilla Bldg / Centennial Park|
|10:00am||-||5:00pm||Inspections: Centennial Park|
|10:00am||-||8:00pm||Powerboats by the Bay: Centennial Park-Food-Vendors-Live Music- “Miss Super Boat Grand Prix” Contest|
|10:30am||-||12:00pm||Meet & Greet Who's in the Driver's Seat: Hyatt Regency Sarasota Ballroom|
|12:00pm||-||4:00pm||Dunk Test - Arlington Park & Aquatic Center 2650 Waldemere St., Sarasota|
|12:00pm||-||5:00pm||Launching: Centennial Park on Sarasota Bay|
|12:00pm||-||5:00pm||Testing: As per the SBIP Rulebook|
|6:00pm||-||11:00pm||Pre-Race Party & Fashion Show - Hyatt Ballroom (7:30pm Fashion Show)|
|Sunday • July 7, 2013 - Race Day|
|7:30am||-||8:30am||Physicals: Hyatt Regency Sarasota|
|8:00am||-||12:00pm||Fueling: Centennial Park|
|8:00am||-||5:00pm||Launch & Recovery: Centennial Park|
|8:30am||Mandatory Drivers Meeting: Hyatt Regency Sarasota|
|10:00am||FAA pilots meeting: Jones Aviation|
|10:00am||-||5:00pm||Powerboats by the Bay: Centennial Park|
|10:30am||Boats of 1st Race: Parade to Mill Area|
|11:00am||Start of 1st Race: Lido Beach|
|12:30pm||Boats of 2nd Race: Parade to Mill Area|
|1:00pm||Start of 2nd Race: Lido Beach|
|5:00pm||Race Awards Ceremony: Hyatt Regency Ballroom|
Super Boat website