2019 APBA Offshore Championship Begins With Thunder on Cocoa Beach

Thunder on Cocoa Beach Space Coast Boat Grand Prix is more than just a powerboat race. It’s a powerboating event of epic proportions that goes back for many years and grows bigger every single spring.

The 2019 APBA Offshore Championship kicks off with the 10th Annual Thunder on Cocoa Beach (May 16-19). Two leading race sanctioning organizations, Offshore Powerboat Association (OPA) and also Powerboat P1, have formed a partnership as joint promoters to deliver outstanding sporting action and entertainment at six race venues.

Powerboat P1 CEO, Azam Rangoonwala, indicated the aim of the new partnership is to strengthen the future of offshore racing in the United States by uniting the race teams in a way that has been missed for a long time to deliver an expanded, cohesive, excellent race series split equally between northern and southern states. “We want to stage events that excite and entertain, ensuring enjoyment for spectators and TV audiences with sponsor value and a real economic impact for the host venues”, stated Rangoonwala.

Tourist Development Council Chairman, Tim Deratany, shared his enthusiasm stating, “Race teams come from all over the world to compete. Both visitors and residents love to watch the Parade of Boats come down A1A, attend the high octane kick-off parties, and seize the opportunity to see the powerboats up close.” All the race teams will be on display at Race Village located on Flounder Drive and festivities leading up to race day include a Kickoff-Party, Downtown Block Party, VIP “Meet The Racers” event, a “Race The Racers” remote control race at Tower Pond, and much more. While, Travis Pastrana, one of the world’s most influential extreme sports athletes, is planning to drive a 40′ Fountain race boat at the upcoming offshore competition in Cocoa Beach.

In 2017, it was estimated that the race brought in nearly $2 Million to the Space Coast with an attendance of 100,000. Newly appointed Executive Director of the Space Coast Office of Tourism, Peter Cranis, added, “We are so excited to welcome back the Super Boat Grand Prix, known as Thunder on Cocoa Beach. This year they are stepping up their game in hopes to grow the event even more with national televised coverage on CBS Sports Network. This spells good news for the economy and great exposure for the Space Coast.”

The newly rebuilt 47′ Miss GEICO Victory Catamaran during testing prior to the 2019 Thunder on Cocoa Beach Super Boat Grand Prix.

The official charity partner for Thunder on Cocoa Beach is “Freedom Fighter” who will receive a portion of all VIP ticket and merchandise sales. This partnership is led by Jenny Pruett, a local business owner & wife of racer and Director Kevin Pruett. The Freedom Fighter organization supports activities that focus on abolishment of human trafficking locally and throughout the world. “We certainly have heard a lot in the news lately on human trafficking and Central Florida is a big area for it. We wanted a charity partner that was going to make an impact locally and also one that would provide volunteer support for the event,” said Race Chairman Kerry Bartlett.

All the racing action takes place on Sunday, May 19. Additionally, best spectator viewing areas include Minuteman Causeway, Lori Wilson Park, and Cocoa Beach Pier. Also, to purchase a VIP race viewing ticket or more information about the Space Coast Grand Prix visit: thunderoncocoabeach.com

2019 APBA Offshore Championship Race Calendar

May 17-19         Cocoa Beach, FL
May 31-June 2  Lake of the Ozarks, MO
July 5-7                Sarasota, FL
July 26-28           St. Clair, MI
August 2-4          Michigan City, IN
Sept. 28-29        Clearwater, FL