FINAL RESULTS: Boat Trader’s Inaugural ‘Boating Madness’: Finding America’s Favorite Boat Brand

Editor’s Note: Boat Trader’s Editorial Team will be consistently updating this story to share the results from the inaugural Boating Madness tournament. This will be your new headquarters for all recaps and information regarding America’s quest to determine the nation’s favorite boat brand. Last updated on April 3, 2018.

FINAL RESULTS (April 3, 2018): Bertram is America’s Favorite Boat Brand for 2018

The people have spoken and (16) Bertram is the champion of the inaugural #BoatingMadness bracket challenge. This was one of the closest results of the entire tournament, with more than 1,000 votes cast. The Facebook vote was a dead heat as we left the office last night, but Bertram pulled away in the closing hours.

One of the most recognizable brands among boaters, Bertram can now call itself America’s Favorite. As a 16-seed, Bertram ranked between 61 and 64 in overall Boat Trader listing detail page views, and was an underdog in each matchup throughout the tournament. No stranger to competition, Bertram took down all that stood in its way: (1) Chaparral in the first round, (9) Monterey in round two, (4) Regal in the sweet sixteen, (7) Scout in the elite eight, (9) Hatteras in the Floating Four and finally (16) Viking.

Competition is where Bertram began—Richard Bertram was an accomplished racer in sailing long before building boats of his own. When an annual powerboat race existed between Miami and Nassau, Bertram’s entries dominated the competition. His first generation deep-v “Moppie” design finished hours before the runner-up in 1960.

Congratulations to Bertram! Click here to take a look at the final bracket.

While Boat Trader has listings of both Bertram and Viking yachts, an even broader selection can be found on YachtWorld.


UPDATE (April 2, 2018): It All Comes Down to This

The first ever #BoatingMadness final will be a scenario that is likely to never occur in the basketball tournament — two 16-seeds facing off for all the marbles. (16) Bertram behind the Moppie Nation took down (9) Hatteras, while (16) Viking’s impressive run continues by knocking off (1) Boston Whaler.

The voting is going down today only on our Facebook page. The winner will be announced tomorrow!

#BoatingMadness Final

(16) Bertram v. (16) Viking


UPDATE (March 29, 2018): Sportfishing, A Deep-V Original and An Unsinkable Legend Meet In The ‘Floating Four’

Through the madness, the sportfishing yachts have emerged as regional champions. Despite two of them being 16 seeds, the battlewagons have fought their way through the bracket to the Floating Four.

East meets West with a legacy matchup between (9) Hatteras and (16) Bertram Yachts. Beginning nearly 60 years ago, Willis Slane sought to make a fishing boat tough enough to traverse the rough waters of Cape Hatteras. The namesake boat builder now finds itself one round away from vying for the title of America’s Favorite.

A racing legend before he ever built a boat, Richard Bertram’s “Moppie” designs dominated the Miami-Nassau and Miami-Key West races of the 1960s. Recognized worldwide for build quality, the brand is a true comeback story as it continues to expand. The two builders are no strangers to each other as they face off each year in a Bahamas-based billfishing tournament called the Bertram-Hatteras Shootout.

The Midwest champion (16) Viking had arguably one of the toughest roads to the Floating Four, facing some of the biggest names in each segment such as (1) Grady-White, (8) Donzi, (5) Pursuit and (3) Contender. The road only gets tougher, as they will face off against The Unsinkable Legend, (1) Boston Whaler

LIFE Magazine was on hand as Richard Fisher publicly sawed one of his boats in half just to prove that it couldn’t sink. Since then, Boston Whaler has been making everything from an 11-foot tender to its offshore fishing flagship 420 Outrage. 

The winners will meet on Monday to determine America’s Favorite Boat Brand.

The Floating Four

(9) Hatteras v. (16) Bertram

(1) Boston Whaler v. (16) Viking


UPDATE (March 22, 2018): Did We Sorta/Kinda Call It? We Did.

In our bracket reveal story, we hinted at whether this could be the first time in the 78 years of the basketball tournament that a one seed would be upset by a 16. Our tournament has two 16 seeds in the Elite 8 and then UMBC did what was once considered to be impossible. You’re welcome, Retriever Nation (We made zero promises about making the Sweet 16).

The lone one seed in the boating tournament, (1) Boston Whaler has by seeding, the toughest test to make it out of their regional against 2) Harbor Cottage. The houseboat builder from Kentucky mounted another late rally to get past (14) Tiara. In the Midwest regional, a couple of the biggest names in saltwater fishing, (3) Contender and (16) Viking face off.

On the other side of the bracket is a yacht showdown for supremacy in the East with (9) Hatteras and (11) Cruisers Yachts. The winner meets the West regional champion, which will be either (7) Scout or (16) Bertram.

If you’re on Instagram, the Boat Trader team will be on the docks at the Palm Beach International Boat Show highlighting some of the boats in the Elite 8.

The Elite 8 Is Set

East Regional Final

(9) Hatteras v. (11) Cruisers Yachts

West Regional Final

(7) Scout v. (16) Bertram

Midwest Regional Final

(3) Contender v. (16) Viking

South Regional Final

(1) Boston Whaler v. (2) Harbor Cottage


UPDATE (March 15, 2018): Sweet Sixteen is Set!

There are now more 16 seeds still in the tournament than 1 seeds as (1) Sea Ray the overall top seed fell to (9) Hatteras. (16) Bertram and (16) Viking face new challenges from (4) Regal and (5) Pursuit to make into the regional finals.

The lone 1 seed is (1) Boston Whaler after taking down Yellowfin in the South region. Will the unsinkable legend stay afloat against (13) Regulator? The offshore life brand got past (5) Chris-Craft in the second round.

Don’t Call it a Comeback

(13) Cobia trailed (5) Skater for the majority of the voting period, but the center console brand was able to squeak past the high performance catamaran builder before time expired.

Sweet Sixteen Matchups

East Region

(9) Hatteras v. (13) Cobia
(2) Formula v. (11) Cruisers Yachts

West Region

(4) Regal v. (16) Bertram
(3) Cobalt v. (7) Scout

Midwest Region

(5) Pursuit v. (16) Viking
(3) Contender (7) Robalo

South Region

(1) Boston Whaler v. (13) Regulator
(2) Harbor Cottage v. (14) Tiara


UPDATE (March 8, 2018): Round 1 Results

Upsets Galore! In the 78 years of the basketball tournament, a 16 seed has never beaten a 1 seed. In the inaugural Boating Madness tournament, we have two 16 seeds advancing to the second round. (16) Bertram, the revived deep-v hull legend took down (1) Chaparral. (16) Viking knocked out (1) Grady-White. The second round will test to see if the glass boat shoes still fit for these two Cinderellas.

The only 2 seed to not advance was (2) Bayliner, which were upset by (15) Pathfinder. After taking down (3) MasterCraft in the first round, (14) Nautique will represent the ski/wake boats in the next round against (11) Cruisers Yachts.

Honorable Mentions

(10) HCB Yachts, the custom center-console maker known for their monster 53’ Sueños, was down big early against (7) Robalo and mounted a furious comeback that ultimately fell short. (13) Everglades also gave it all they had but (3) Contender held firm, advancing to take on the popular Bass Fishing brand (11) Nitro.

Full Second Round Matches

Hosted on Facebook. Click here to download the bracket.

East Region

(1) Sea Ray v. (9) Hatteras
(5) Skater v. (13) Cobia
(11) Cruisers Yachts v. (14) Nautique
(2) Formula v. (10) Baja

West Region

(9) Monterey v. (16) Bertram
(4) Regal v. (12) Hurricane
(3) Cobalt v. (6) Four Winns
(7) Scout v. (15) Pathfinder

Midwest Region

(8) Donzi v. (16) Viking
(4) Carver v. (5) Pursuit
(3) Contender v. (11) Nitro
(2) Ranger v. (7) Robalo

South Region

(1) Boston Whaler v. (9) Yellowfin
(5) Chris-Craft v. (13) Regulator
(6) Mako v. (14) Tiara
(2) Harbor Cottage v. (7) Malibu


Previous Announcement (February 26, 2018)

It’s almost that time again. That time where the madness of college sports’ largest event consumes America’s sports fans. Every sports bar will have their TVs locked to the CBS family of stations. Those sitting in offices across the country (including ours) will have a tab on our web browser live streaming the games that can be hidden at a moments notice.

Bracketology has been used to settle the score on everything from the best beers, to the best dogs and movies, so it got us thinking: Boaters are passionate about the brands they choose to get them out on the water, let’s let the public vote to find out which is really America’s favorite.

march madness boating
Are you ready for ‘Boating Madness’? Who is your Cinderella brand that you hope will make it to the Floating Four?

Seeding Boats

We pulled a report of the top 64 brands with the most viewed listings on Boat Trader in 2018. We’re going old-school and keeping the pre-expansion 68 play-in format. Now we’re in the process of matching the seedings for the most relevant match-ups. Check out our Facebook page for the selection show that will be live streamed on Wednesday, Feb. 28.


How does a boat win? The most votes are tallied at the end of each week. The brand with the most in each matchup will move onto the next round. The schedule is as follows:

First Round: March 1-7
Second Round: March 8-14
Round of 16: March 15-21
Elite 8: March 22-28
Floating Four: March 29-April 1
Championship Vote: April 2

Check back in the coming days for more information including the bracket and how to vote.



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