The STIHL Offshore Racing Team was born in 2007 when STIHL Southeast President Bob "J.R." Noble commissioned Doug Wright to build a 32’ catamaran. Grants Signature Racing completed the boat powered by twin Mercury 2.5 outboards with the inaugural race held in Panama City, FL October 2007. In 2008, J.R. alongside throttle man and rigger, Grant Bruggemann, drove the STIHL boat to a National and World Championship in the Stock Outboard class.
Mid-year 2010, J.R. sold the Doug Wright catamaran and purchased a 2010 Skater 388′ from Douglas Marine. The boat was powered by a pair of inboard Mercury 525 HP engines with Mercury Speedmaster #6 drives and was once again rigged by Grants Signature Racing.
Racing in the larger Cat Light class, the team ran a limited schedule in 2010, crossing the finish line 1st in half its races and 2nd in the remainder. The 2011 campaign proved to be a triumphant one as the team captured the National Championship winning four out of six races. In 2012 Super Boat International consolidated several classes into one to form the new Super Boat Class, and Team STIHL made the leap with new, larger twin 750 HP Scorpion engines and continued winning races. STIHL finished 2nd in the World Championships in 2012 and 2013, but won the National Championship in 2013 and again in 2014, which allowed them to run the US-1 number on the boat for the 2014 and 2015 seasons.
In 2015 Noble commissioned Douglas Marine to build a new Skater 388. The hull was completed in January 2016 and delivered to Grants Signature Racing in Bradenton, FL to be rigged once again with twin 750 HP Scorpion Enterprise engines, and Mercury Racing Speedmaster #6 drives to compete in the Super Boat class.
Sadly, early on the morning of March 8th, 2016, Bob “J.R.” Noble passed away before he could see his new race boat completed.
The STIHL Offshore Racing team continues on in his memory led by J.R.’s son, Jake Noble who has taken on the driver’s duties, along with longtime throttle man and family friend, Grant Bruggemann in the cockpit with him.
The duo made their racing debut in the newly completed Skater 388 at the Space Coast Super Boat Grand Prix, taking 3rd place and will continue to run the full 2016 Super Boat International circuit.