Fountain, Moore take another shot at benchmark

Published 8:15 pm Tuesday, February 27, 2018


CHOCOWINITY — Beaufort County residents may have noticed a boat speeding around the Pamlico River in the last week, as Reggie Fountain III and Billy Moore are chasing the American Powerboat Association Unlimited V-bottom kilometer-speed record.

The Fountain team is attempting a 200-mph per kilometer average, nearly 20 mph above the record set by a 43-foot Outerlimits V-bottom in 2014.

According to Tara Galligan, Fountain parent company Iconic Marine Group’s director of marketing, the Fountain team attempted a new record over the weekend, but conditions weren’t quite ideal. While they didn’t break the record then, and are intent on trying again today, safety is the team’s main concern.

“It’s not safe to run at those speeds with the crosswinds out there,” Galligan said. “Our main concern, especially at these speeds, is we need it to be safe. We’ve got to keep everybody comfortable.”

Other than safety, the team is also looking out for the right conditions for achieving maximum speed. Galligan said cooler weather helps because “the water molecules compact and make the boat run a little faster.”

POWER: Known for their power and speed, Fountain boats have been a mainstay in the boating industry for decades. The Fountain family is back on board at Iconic Marine Group, the parent company of Fountain boats. (Wayne Woolard)

The reason for taking a shot at this speed record is to reassert the company as the benchmark for powerboats. Reggie Fountain Jr. originally owned the company, but “had some troubles and some bankruptcies,” according to Galligan.

Iconic Marine Group, teaming with the Fountain family, now strives to continue the company’s tradition.

Fred Ross, the company’s current owner, immediately set his sights on this record.

“He’s a giant boating fan,” Galligan said. “He decided one of the first things he was interested in doing was taking that speed record that had belonged to the factory.

“’We’re going to take it back and bring it where it belongs.’ That was the goal. We started on that project probably 10 months ago.”

Fountain has been a consultant for the project. The trial runs have gone well — even exceeded expectations, Galligan said. Now it’s a matter of waiting for Mother Nature to cooperate, she said.
The next run will begin from Fountain Powerboats at approximately 8 a.m.

For those wishing to view the attempt, Galligan said there are a few good spots off the Pamlico. One is on the waterfront near Haven’s Gardens. The other is in a vacant lot in the Portside on the Pamlico, which is a neighborhood off of Whichard’s Beach Road and Portside Drive.

Neighborhood homeowners ask that those visiting the latter site refrain from parking on the grass.