Our very own John Tomlinson, Throttleman for the Performance Boat Center/Jimmy John’s team, is excited to travel to Sarasota to compete in the Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix. Performance Boat Center is competing in the Supercat class against CJ Grant Racing/Too Much?, Pro Floors Racing, M-Con, and WHM, among others. Surely a fantastic way to celebrate the Fourth of July, we’re excited for the Performance Boat Center team to rev their engines, and we wish them luck!
SARASOTA — The 35th annual Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix Festival is set for July 7 off Lido Beach.
More than 50 teams from around the world — including Australia, Wales, Norway and Turkey — are expected to converge on Sarasota as part of the 2019 Offshore Powerboat Association Offshore Championship Series.
This year’s main event will be a step up from last year, organizers said.
“We can see this year there’s in excess of 50 teams compared to 30 last year,” said Lucy Nicandri, executive director of Suncoast Charities for Children.
Nicandri said a wider Lido Beach due to the completed nourishment project “and increased length of the course will make the event more spectator friendly.”
Nicandri estimated the weeklong Grand Prix had a $21.9 million economic effect on the region last year.
The event has improved, in part, from the help of the Offshore Powerboat Association and Powerboat P1, which formed an alliance to create the championship series with six different race sites.
Suncoast Charities for Children, which helps special needs children, has been the driving force behind the festival each year since its beginning in 1986.
“With all the fun and excitement surrounding the Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix Festival it is sometimes easy to lose sight of this and many times the general public is not aware of this aspect,” Nicandri said in a statement. “Sponsorships and donations are critical to sustain the event.
“Every year we hope to ensure that a significant amount of net proceeds are generated to continue to fulfill our mission of supporting five local nonprofit agencies which provide programs and services every year to over 5,000 local children, teens, and adults with special needs.”