Subscribe to our newsletter

Boats

Jarrett Bay 44 Express

PMY Boat Test: Jarrett Bay 44 Express
Jarrett Bay 44 Express — By Capt. Ken Kreisler — August 2002

Fit to a Tee
Professional golfer Curtis Strange gets an unusual custom boat to suit his needs.
   
 More of this Feature

• Part 1: Jarrett Bay 44
• Part 2: Jarrett Bay 44 continued
• Jarrett Bay 44 Specs
• Jarrett Bay 44 Deck Plan
• Jarrett Bay 44 Acceleration Curve
• Jarrett Bay 44 Photo Gallery


 Related Resources
• Boat Test Index

 Elsewhere on the Web
• Jarrett Bay
 

"I like fishing because it's so different from what I do for a living," says Curtis Strange, his voice tinged with the easy-on-the-ear drawl of North Carolina, where he lives. "It's one of the very few things that really gets me away from my job." He smiles for a moment as he hears himself say "job."

Maybe that's because Strange's job is golf. For those of you who don't follow the sport, he has finished first on the PGA Tour 17 times; was the Tour's leading money winner in 1985, 1987, and 1988; won back-to-back U.S. Open Championships (1988 and 1989); is captain of the 2002 American Ryder Cup Team; and is lead golf analyst for ABC television. Heck, I'd be grinning, too.

I'm at the Beaufort, North Carolina-based Jarrett Bay Marine Industrial Park, a 175-acre facility on the Intracoastal Waterway at Mile Marker 198, aboard Lady Sarah, Strange's just-delivered Jarrett Bay 44 Express. We're sharing the space atop the forward athwartships bait freezer on the starboard side of the cockpit. Joining us for the day is Dew Forbes, Jarrett Bay's vice president. "Okay, fair enough," I say, still smiling and realizing of course, that my gig isn't so bad either. "But why a Jarrett Bay?"

Strange tells me that in doing his homework, he'd heard good things about Randy Ramsey, Jarrett Bay's president, and the kind of boats his team builds. When he finally decided to get another boat--he's owned several, the last one big enough to warrant a captain--"I like fishing because it's so different from what I do for a living," says Curtis Strange, his voice tinged with the easy-on-the-ear drawl of North Carolina, where he lives. "It's one of the very few things that really gets me away from my job." He smiles for a moment as he hears himself say "job."

Maybe that's because Strange's job is golf. For those of you who don't follow the sport, he has finished first on the PGA Tour 17 times; was the Tour's leading money winner in 1985, 1987, and 1988; won back-to-back U.S. Open Championships (1988 and 1989); is captain of the 2002 American Ryder Cup Team; and is lead golf analyst for ABC television. Heck, I'd be grinning, too.

I'm at the Beaufort, North Carolina-based Jarrett Bay Marine Industrial Park, a 175-acre facility on the Intracoastal Waterway at Mile Marker 198, aboard Lady Sarah, Strange's just-delivered Jarrett Bay 44 Express. We're sharing the space atop the forward athwartships bait freezer on the starboard side of the cockpit. Joining us for the day is Dew Forbes, Jarrett Bay's vice president. "Okay, fair enough," I say, still smiling and realizing of course, that my gig isn't so bad either. "But why a Jarrett Bay?"

Strange tells me that in doing his homework, he'd heard good things about Randy Ramsey, Jarrett Bay's president, and the kind of boats his team builds. When he finally decided to get another boat--he's owned several, the last one big enough to warrant a captain--he knew he wanted the next one to be something he and his wife could easily handle themselves. "A simple day boat for fishing and something we could use to get away with for long weekends," he says.

His Jarrett Bay 44 Express also has a pedigree earned on the often unpredictable waters of the area: Hatteras, Cape Fear, and Oregon Inlet, the same places that produced seasoned charter boat skippers-turned-builders like Buddy Davis, Paul Mann, Ricky Scarborough, Sunny Briggs, as well as Ramsey. And it shows in the way Strange's 44 runs.

Once we clear the no-wake zones, Strange slides Lady Sarah's DDEC single-lever controls forward, and off we go, her 700-hp Series 60 Detroits delivering a top speed of almost 41 mph. I note a quick jump out of the hole and little bow rise during acceleration. During quick port and starboard maneuvers at various speeds, she turns on a dime, and as you'd expect of a Carolina-built boat, she pushes her way through the waves without pounding or jarring in the short, steep chop we encounter as we poke out into the Atlantic.

"We're going to Okracoke with a few friends this weekend," Strange says later as he brings the boat out of a tight turn, evens her out, and picks up the markers for our run back to the Intracoastal. "There'll be two other boats making the trip with us." He looks back at the even wake left by Lady Sarah. "That kind of water back there is no problem for this boat. That and worse," he smiles. Forbes tells me Jarret Bays are noteworthy in that they are as seakindly in a head sea as a following sea. "It's [because of] the bottom that's sharp at the bow and flat aft, a form we call a `modified deadrise.'"

Next page > Part 2: The real story... > Page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

Related Features