Mark Richards (AKA Ricko) is known for wanting to go fast, really fast. Having spent the last 22 years skippering Bob Oatley’s yachts, tweaking the 100ft Richel Pugh designed maxi yacht “Wild Oats XI” and leading it to wins in the Sydney to Hobart a record-breaking nine times, Ricko couldn’t help himself and has now supercharged his Axopar 24 T-Top. We can’t talk about the horsepower on Mark’ s Axopar but using his expert boat building skills in conjunction with the fantastic build and high safety of Axopar boats, Mark has managed to get an outstanding 63 knots top speed.
With four aboard for a joyride through Pittwater in Sydney, we hit 60 knots and lost the drone within 5 seconds of what felt like a Boeing 747 take off… the eyachts crew Peter, Joe and Marnie could not stop smiling.
The upgrades may have started with the engine, but eYachts Managing Director, Peter Hrones, continued checking the boat and noticing more small modifications with the T-Top including bracing underneath the canopy batterns and extra spectra rope strapped down to the deck. The boat was so smooth in a 5 to 10 knot wind and at 40knots cruising, we could still talk normally around the cockpit with just a beautiful smooth engine sound in the background and at 60 knots approx 112km/h we had no rattles whatsoever.
Mark is the founder of Palm Beach motor yachts, Australia’s dream boat, and now CEO of Grand Banks. He has been a great advocate for Axopar and has a real passion for the brand. Mark genuinely loves talking about his Axopar which he has owned for 2 plus years now and has no interest in changing in the near future…
So what does this multi-award winning skipper use his ridiculously speedy Axopar for? Well if he can get to his destination by water, he will. With a waterfront property in Newport, it’s only an 8-minute zip around the corner to the famous Hawkesbury River and into Americas Bay. Or when he needs to get to training he will zoom out the heads and offshore getting into Sydney Harbour at a stunning time of approximately 30 minutes, avoiding the horrendous traffic and taking a far more fun and scenic route. And when he has a party to attend a waterfront property, Mark won’t hesitate to take the Axopar over a car with the added bonus of being able to sleep aboard rather than having to find a way home. He has now slept on board around five times, probably the most any Axopar 24 owner ever has.
Caution: Please note that Axopar do not recommend its owners making modifications to the CE certified certificated Axopars and the maximum recommended HP tested under CE certification and Mark being a very qualified boat builder and designer understands that his modifications have now voided any warranty by the factory. Mark has done his own investigations and calculations before supercharging his Axopar.
Watch the video here.