San Francisco to Long Beach – Non-Stop

There’s something very enticing about the ocean and traveling great distances in a high-speed offshore boat. Some very well known celebrity-types have even tried their hand at it like Chuck Norris, Michael Regan (son of President Ronald Regan), Betty Cook and Kurt Russell. On the east coast legendary offshore champion Dr. Bob Magoon was the master of the Miami to New York run. And Hall of Fame boat racer Bob Nordskog wasn’t intimidated by any challenge or any body of water.

Here's a little look back at a few Pacific Coast offshore endurance attempts, some successful, some not so much.

San Francisco to LB Outerlimits at Dock.jpg

After a very encouraging start early on the morning of December 11, 2013, the attempt to set a new gas engine powered record for the San Francisco to Long Beach offshore endurance run (non-stop) by Bob Russell and John Rogers fell short of their goal.

San Fransciso to LB Outlimits Stern.jpg

Russell and Rogers passed under the Golden Gate Bridge about 7:45am in their 51-foot Outerlimits cat powered by a pair of 1550 HP Sterling built engines with 600 gallons of fuel on-board. Water conditions were ideal and the big cat was averaging close to 100 mph in the open ocean for more than half of the 450 mile course. Unfortunately fuel transfer problems between auxiliary tanks developed later in the day to dash any hopes of beating the 5 hour, 57 minutes record held by Bob Nordskog set in 1988 in a 39’ Cigarette, about a 70 mph average speed.
San Francisco to MDR Nordskog 39 Cigarette image.jpg

Nordskog’s record was sanctioned by APBA for the Golden Gate Bridge to the detached breakwater off Marina del Rey, a distance of approximately 420 miles. Russell and Rogers had planned to break Nordskog’s mark by passing by the Marina del Rey breakwater and then continuing on another 35 miles into Long Beach Harbor off the fantail of the Queen Mary to pick off a second record for the day.

San Francisco to LB record run at finish image.jpg

Officially, Russell and Rogers did establish a new APBA record for the San Francisco to Long Beach run by finishing in a time of 8 hours, 15 minutes and 5 seconds. The effort earned the offshore duo the newly created Marani Cup which will be awarded to anyone officially beating the now established record for San Francisco to Long Beach in a gas powered power boat.

San Francisco to LB Team on Deck.jpg

Previously, the offshore team of Lance Ware, Nigel Hook, Dan MacNamara and Andy Hindley attempted this same run from the Golden Gate to the Queen Mary in a 48’ APISA vee-hull with twin Cummins QSB 6.7 550 diesel engines.

San Francisco to LB APISA boat at LB.jpg

They too encountered fuel problems late in the run, but finished the course in 9 hours and 50 minutes and 51 seconds claiming the Lucas Oil Offshore Cup for boats powered by alternative fuels. The existing diesel record for a San Francisco to Marina del Rey run was set back in 2003 with a 48’ Scarab hull piloted by Nigel Hook, Dan MacNamara, Rique Ford and John Lindstrom in the time of 6 hours, 43 minutes.

Who will be next? Still looking for someone to make the San Francisco to Long Beach run (gas or diesel powered) under the magical six hour mark.