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Talley’s helps push NZ’s most innovative jet boat out on the world stage

Posted

March 18, 2020

Lorelle Puklowski

Ongoing sponsorship by Talley’s has played a significant part in getting one of New Zealand’s fastest jetboats from a Queenstown garage to the world stage.

The Talley’s U777 is the first of its kind, able to hit top speeds of 260 kilometres per hour. Right now, it’s on its way to the World Championships in the US, after being loaded onto a container in Dunedin last week.

The boat’s team of 8 will follow, including driver Regan Williamson and turbine mechanic and navigator Blair Christmas.

To protect the team in the race to become world champions, sponsorship was required to cover the cost of the best safety equipment available.

We have supported the Talley’s U777 since 2007, so we made sure they got the equipment they needed.

“We’re rapt to help the team get the to the US and fly the kiwi flag” said Milan Talley. “They are a very innovative and driven team. We value their ‘can do, will do’ attitude.”

Driver Regan said there is no overriding sponsor for jet boating in New Zealand, so as a company we are pleased to support the team.

Jetboating has been a passion for Regan for many years, with this being his 6th time competing in the Unlimited (U)-Class at the Worlds. He says he is feeling confident about the challenge ahead.

“We are feeling really good about the upcoming races. We believe we can do this – come out number one,” says Regan. “It is a hectic schedule – we even have to drive more than 1,500 km to get to the event itself. We will also spend the 10 days before the event ‘pre-boating’, to familiarize ourselves with the rivers.”

Regan’s first got in the game in 1993 as a driver for Shotover Jet in Queenstown. In 2007, he started his jet boat river racing career on the back of thousands of hours of commercial and recreational boating throughout New Zealand and North America.

Now, his name appears on every Jet Boat Provisional Race trophy from 2007 to 2012. In 2012, he teamed up with Blair Christmas to develop a 1,400 hp jet turbine race boat. That combo led him to dominate in the sport with back-to-back 2014 and 2015 New Zealand titles, third place overall in the 2016 world event the US, and second place overall in the 2017 world event here in NZ.

Talley’s is proud to support Regan, Blair, and the team, and will be cheering for them from the moment the ‘flag’ drops.

Check out the story about the Talley’s U777 in the Otago Daily Times, and following their process on their Facebook page.

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