Thursday, June 30, 2011

Speculation Abounds Whether Phenomenon will Show at LOTO Shootout

Little has been seen or heard about Al Copeland Jr. and his Phenomenon cat since the boat debuted at the Key West Worlds in 2009 and making a splash at the Miami Boat Show back in 2010. The 56-foot catamaran with four T-55 Lycoming turbines got a lot of attention when it was first seen, but technical problems encountered since that time seem to have put the kabosh on any speed record attempts or further trials over the last year. Recently, speculation has grown on whether the boat might turn up at this year's Lake of The Ozarks Shootout, on August 22-28.

Driver Al Copeland Jr., was hoping to follow in the footsteps of his famous boat racing father, who founded the Popeyes restaurant chain. Phenomenon is the culmination of his father’s wish to break the propeller-driven speed record of 220.43 mph...but there's some stiff competition out there from other powerful turbine cats, like Miss Geico--which has hit 210mph.

With the 4 turbines, the boat was supposed to bust out with about 12,000hp--and on paper, it should be able to make a solid record attempt. The question is, will we see it any time soon? The project's Facebook page has plenty of fan questions...but no answers.

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