Even the most casual offshore powerboat racing fan likely has heard of the Victory Team, the Dubai-based outfit that dominated the now defunct Union Internationale Motonautique Class 1 circuit. Victory has long produced some the fastest offshore racing catamarans on the planet—and at least one will find its way onto the new six-race APBA Championship Series circuit this year—but now the company is entering the white-hot high-performance pleasure sport catamaran market with pair of offerings.
By the time you read this, the first Victory VTX 34 sport catamaran hull and deck built by Victory should be well on its way to Florida. Since unveiling a 32-foot version of the twin Mercury Racing Verado 400R outboard engine-powered cat in late 2018 at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, the domestic principals involved—most notably project investors and marine industry veterans Craig Barrie and Ricky Maldonado—have been working to create a network to finish and sell the 34-footer, as well as its 27-foot sibling powered by twin Mercury Racing 300R outboards, in the United States.
FB Marine Group based in Pompano Beach, Fla., will be Victory’s first distributor and its exclusive Florida dealer. Premier Performance Interiors, better known as PPI in the go-fast marine industry and consumer circles, of Sarasota, Fla., will handle interior installations. Rigging will be handled at the Victory team’s own U.S. facility in Edgewater, Fla., as well as at Grant’s Signature Racing in Bradenton, Fla.
No single painter for the boats has been selected at this time.
“Victory has been successful in offshore racing for more than 30 years and their facility in Dubai is second to none,” said Scott Gillman, the chief executive officer of the Victory Team, in an exclusive interview with speedonthewater.com at the Miami International Boat Show on Friday. “We see how popular now in the U.S. the (sport) catamarans are becoming. We feel we have one of the best cats—and for sure the best racing record overseas and in Europe—and we know our boat is a great product.
“Victory builds a great boat so we decided to throw our hand into it with the new 34 and the 27,” he continued. “We are happy to spread the Dubai name around the world.”
According to Gillman, the VTX 34 rides on exactly the same hull—with a 65-1/2-inch-wide tunnel—as the team’s XCAT Series raceboat and the VTX 27 is a scaled down version of the 34-footer. The VTX 27 will be targeted at the West Coast and Midwest markets, whereas the VTX 34 will be aimed more toward East Coast buyers. To that end, Gillman said, Maldonado and Barrie will work on expanding the dealer network.
Approximate base/list price for the VTX 34 is $420,000 and $360,000 for the VTX 27. (With twin 300R as opposed to Verado 400R outboards, the VTX 34 lists for $390,000.) Prices will vary with lamination schedule—the boats will be offered in carbon-fiber or E-glass versions—and buyer-specified features.
“If someone wants Simrad, we’ll install Simrad,” Maldonado said. “If someone wants Garmin, we’ll go with that. It’s all up to the customer, but there are only so many options you can add to one to these boats because they’re already maxed out. We’ll do whatever the customer wants, as long as it is up to Victory Team standards.”
Gillman added that the company would like to annually build 12 to 20 cats between the 34- and 27-foot models for the U.S. market.
“That would be a great start, but we will build whatever the market will bear,” he said. “The strength of our cats is in medium to rough water. That has been proven many, many times.”
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