By Jason Y. Wood
Another year has nearly passed, and boat buyers and sellers are peering into the great unknown and wondering what the coming season will bring. Just like with any challenges people face, the new year is a time for fresh starts and redoubled efforts. Make some resolutions and make 2012 the best year yet.
I just returned from a wonderful five-day bareboat cruise thorugh the British Virgin Islands, courtesy of The Moorings, which lent me one of their brand-new 3900 PCs. (The PC stands for Power Cat.) Here's an aft view our boat with me and my daughter Rikki.
In March 2010, the 219-foot Apoise was auctioned off. And while the peculiar mode of sale created some buzz, it made sense as the yacht's owner had co-founded Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers. And whatever your thoughts on her final sale price (reportedly approximately $46 million), the yacht was sold fewer than three months after the owners announced the sale.
But for all the skeptics, someone's ears perked up.
Oh right, because it goes 100 mph+. I was down in North Miami at Lip-Ship Performance yesterday testing the Cigarette 39 Top Gun Unlimited for an upcoming story and heavens to Betsy does that thing have some pop. Twin 700-hp super-charged Mercury's had us cranking by A-Rod's house in South Beach at just over the triple-digit mark. So I crossed that one off the bucket list successfully. And by successfully, I mean without actually kicking the bucket while doing it.
Boating, so the theory goes, is good for kids. It brings families together, it builds quality time, it creates memories. All great concepts. But, from my experience, be careful what you wish for.
Many years ago I brought three of my four children along for a long-planned, much-anticipated vacation on my new boat, a Grand Banks 36. I’d just been divorced, and I thought the boat would be the platform for us all to be together again. I had dreams of blue skies, lots of laughter, warmth, and family bonding. We would all start a new portion of our lives together, afloat. The possibilities were endless.
What would you do if a single-engine plane looked like it had lost control and was heading straight for your cruiser? Take evasive action? Jump overboard? Several boaters did both near South Padre Island, Texas—after which the pilot pulled up at the last minute and flew away.
Rodolfo Gonzalez-Gonzalez, a 20-year-old novice pilot, was arrested in September for allegedly buzzing three boats in southern Texas. Police say the Mexico City man flew his small plane very low near Port Mansfield, as if he were going to crash into the boats, and then pulled up before hitting them.
Italian megayacht-builder Benetti has had a busy fortnight with the launch of two megayachts.
Some of you may have heard a recent rumor floating around the industry that long-time Jersey boatbuilder Ocean Yachts was closing for business—which is simply not true. I had caught wind of the rumor and went straight to the source, John Leek IV, the company's general manager, to see what was up. Here is what J4 had to say via e-mail: