01 Nov 2012

Bright sunshine and beautiful boats with colourful banners flying high created a festive atmosphere at the on-water section of the Cape Town International Boat Show recently - inviting enthusiastic visitors and their excited children to climb aboard.

Boating World’s magnificent five-boat display proved hugely popular - standing out among the luxurious motor yachts and sailing boats languishing in the water at the V & A waterfront.

Derrick and Suzanne and their team, looking very smart and professional in their show attire, were ready and waiting to show clients around the new Fairline Squadron 42 and Riviera 43 Offshore Express – as well as their other boats which included a sporty Formula Fastech reclining on an Airberth Boat Lift.

There were two Riviera’s on show, the 43 Offshore Express and a 33 Open Flybridge which attracted much attention especially among serious anglers looking for Sport Fishers and cruisers able to handle the unpredictable Cape Coast.

The new 43’s open-plan layout – appealed to all who enjoy entertaining a crowd as everyone can be comfortably accommodated on one level – including the skipper.  Of course the joystick proved of great interest to boaters with moorings in small marinas like Granger Bay – for easy maneuvering in inclement weather.

Not to be outdone - the smaller 33 Open Flybridge featured a bow thruster (an optional extra) making her more manageable in tight spots – even when there are only two people on board this 37-footer.

The two luxurious Fairline cruisers looked spectacular on their moorings and visitors clamoured for a closer look at the Squadron 42 and Targa 38. The massive open flybridge on the 42 was a focal point among outdoor lovers who appreciated the massive L-shaped seating area - complete with barbeque griddle for those essential braai’s.

The Targa 38 appealed to everyone from couples picturing romantic overnight getaways – to day-trippers looking for a quick ride to the closest crayfishing grounds or hidden coves to explore. Sea tests of this sexy model and the others would have to wait until after the show.

Visitors also enjoyed some of the on-water action in the Bay from kids learning to sail dinghies to regattas and training sessions by rowers in Dragon boats.

From the water’s edge it was a free fun-ride in a water ferry or taxi shuttle to the indoor section of the show at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.  Boat dealers put a lot of effort into their bright, colourful stands showing off a whole range of craft from inland to deepsea – and filled with accessories, watertoys and docking systems and more.

Club Marine Insurance could not be missed right at the entrance to the exhibition hall with their massive back wall covered in colourful watersport graphics. A three-wheeler Spyder bike and a sporty Harley Davidson immediately caught the eye and their lucky draw offering a Starlight cruise for two to Barra Lodge in Mozambique worth R15000 was a huge crowd puller.

Right behind them, Lowrance South Africa attracted excited anglers eager to try out the new Touch Screen which is available in Afrikaans and the most up-to-date mapping charts for inland and offshore users – among heaps of other interesting electronic features for boaters.

Boating International’s new enclosed Ace Glider 750, solidly built to withstand buffeting seas with good protection from the elements and brimming with the latest mod cons, drew loads of anglers keen to see this model for the first time. Their imported Malibu 22 MXZ Wakesetter. Malibu Response LXI slalom boat and Sunsport 2050 Offshore also attracted a lot of attention.

Big motor names were there including Honda, Mercury and Yamaha - well shown off behind a variety of locally-manufactured boats.

There was even a huge pool of over 60m long inside with three obstacles, for the first-ever indoor wakeboard competition which attracted many enthusiastic spectators. Visitors also flocked to the Fishing Village where they learned about rods, reels, lines, lures, bait rigging, casting and rolling. 

After three consecutive boat shows in the country’s chief cities through winter and into Spring, the South African public has been well set-up to make well-informed decisions about the many products and services available – for a great season ahead of successful boating.