Local teen Sam Spinks worked his way up from pole five to pole two for the final race of the Australian Power Boating Association Championships in March.
Participating in power boating since age 11, Sam nurtures a keen interest in the high speed sport.
Purchasing a boat in 2011, Sam made the plunge and stepped out of junior competition and into the 25 horsepower open hull outboard class.
Within power boating championships, competitors race in real time with pole position determined by qualifying times.
There are a variety of classes, each with different restrictions on boat and engine size. In the unrestricted division, boats can hit top speeds of up to 214 kilometres per hour.
In just his second year of national competition, Sam managed to finish second in the 25hp class, starting in pole position five.
His first performance in the national championship last year was similarly strong, taking out third place.
“By the final race I’d worked my way up to pole position two, I couldn’t quite catch him,” he says of this year’s race leader.
“He was too fast.”
However, this wasn’t Sam’s first shot at a success, earning the state title in the 2017-18 season.
Sam’s passion for the sport even inspired him to build his own boat.
Along with dad Casey and local fibreglass expert Paul Johnstone, a mould was made and two new boats were built.
The result: an ultralight, aerodynamic speed machine named Slingshot III. Sam has been flogging the guts out of it ever since.
Sam now powers on to improve his form on his way to a maiden national power boating title.
He will also head to Rosevears on Saturday May 4 to defend his title as Tasmanian champion.
Sixteen-year-old Sam Spinks poses with his pride and joy Slingshot III and his trophy for taking out second place in the Australian Power Boating Association Championships. Picture: Isaac Popowski.