Gallery of the week: LEOPA Thunderfest shines brightly


Among the 60 stunning performance boats available for last Saturday’s Lake Erie Offshore Performance Association Thunderfest Poker Run at the popular Put-in-Bay in Ohio, there were at least 10 magnificent models of Outshore Powerboats, including included a very unique boat built by the Bristol, RI, company — a 38 foot center console owned by Stephen Miles.

Several Outerlimits owners took part in the LEOPA Thunderfest Poker Run in Ohio on Saturday. Photos by Pete Boden / Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

Yes, Stephen Miles, the much sought after painter behind Stephen Miles Design in Owensboro, Ky. Miles and his lovely wife, Heather, have traveled over 450 miles to Sandusky, Ohio to spend time with the client from Outerlimits, Ed Urbanek, who owns a 52-foot Outerlimits (pictured in the foreground in the image above) that he keeps in his Lake Erie home on Johnsons Island, and several other Outerlimits owners for whom he has painted boats in the past including Jason and Laurie Moe, who brought their 46ft Sailing Catamaran Hurry up at the Washington LEOPA Race.

Miles said he had a great time at the poker run, but quickly admitted he didn’t even know there was an event going on.

“I have to be honest, I didn’t even know there was a poker run until I got there and Ed mentioned it; when he invited me over a few weeks ago, I thought it was just him and a few friends meeting at his house, ”Miles said with a laugh. “As soon as I realized it was an event, I went ahead and signed up, and I’m glad we did. We had a great time and we met a lot of great people. The business was amazing and Put-in-Bay was cool. Ed’s place is spectacular too.

“I loved seeing boaters that I don’t see often, like Todd Fountain, this guy is cool as hell,” he added, referring to the famous Michigan native who owns the 46ft skater. . Tom cat, among other boats. “Seeing the Moes is always fun, as well as people like Dave and Nicole Weschler. It was definitely worth the trip. “

Former LEOPA officer and longtime event participant Nikole Gilstorf had a blast at the Thunderfest Poker Run with her husband Joe in their 50ft Skater Powerboats catamaran. Fifty shades.

“It was a great race and a great outing,” said Nikole Gilstorf. “Fortunately, this year the weather has cooperated.”

The Gilstorfs and several of their accompanying friends enjoyed the lunch break at Old Plat on the Huron River and the time in Put-in-Bay.

Check out the slideshow above for 30 more images from the Thunderfest Poker Run in Put-in-Bay.

Devin Wozencraft is another racing Skater owner who is a huge Put-in-Bay fan. The owner of Wozencraft Insurance in Santa Ana, Calif., Enjoyed the event with his wife and twin son and daughter in their 30-footer powered by twin Mercury Racing 300R engines. They even rented a spot on Put-in-Bay a few days before the start of the poker run this weekend.

“This race is always so much fun,” said Wozencraft. ” I recommend it to everyone. It was another great year this year due to the great weather, friendly people and the number of unique boats. One of my clients, Michael Boyas, recently sold A stray cat, her 50-foot Statement Marine catamaran, and purchased an 82-foot Pershing to bring her to the race. They actually ended up using it as a second map stop which was fun. “

Wozencraft also presented Jim and Sarah Wiley’s newest boat, a 2013 51-foot Magnum Marine dayboat that resided on Michigan’s Lake St. Clair. The couple had planned to test the 51-foot at sea early last week and ship it to their home in St. Petersburg, Fla., Before Wozencraft, whose company insures the boat, suggested keeping it in. the Midwest for an additional week to participate in LEOPA. Thunderfest Poker Run before transporting it to Florida. The Wileys ran with the idea and ended up having fun in Jim Wiley’s old woodland while growing up in the Detroit and remembers going by boat from Detroit to Cedar’s Point, the famous park. of Sandusky Attractions.

“It was well worth extending our transportation for a week to enjoy the race on Lake Erie in the new boat before taking her to Florida,” said Jim Wiley. “The timing worked perfectly and it never would have happened if Devin hadn’t suggested it. He was also very helpful with all the logistics of the event. Overall it was a beautiful place and a great time. Sarah and I were talking about going back. We agreed that doing it in another boat would be better though.

“This boat did a great job during the race, it handles the water so well,” he continued. “We would just prefer something a little sportier up there.”

Sarah Wiley agreed and said the boat, which is powered by a pair of 1600hp MTU V-10 diesel engines and is like new, felt extremely solid in the harsh conditions they encountered on the lake.

“The boat is beautiful and the ride is fantastic,” added Sarah Wiley. “The race was fun, we met a lot of nice people. Boating is very different in the north and in the south.

Jeff Upholzer, the 2020 LEOPA commodore and current club treasurer, was delighted to see the Magnum – and all the other cool boats – at the event.

“Overall it was a spectacular day,” Upholzer said. “There was a lot of great material, amazing people and a great venue. The perfect mix of what you need for an exceptional event.

Related stories
The LEOPA Thunderfest Poker Run is full
An “under-represented gem”: LEOPA Thunderfest opens registrations
Slideshow of the week: Scenes from the LEOPA Thunderfest poker race in Put-In-Bay
Beautifully reborn skater cats are heading to Lake Erie this weekend
Remotorized Wozencraft Skater 308 Introduces New Mercury Racing 300R AMS Outboards
Photo essay: Devin Wozencraft’s Kuttawa Odyssey
Stray Cat finds a new home

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