It was 5:12 am when my first email of the morning arrived: “Leaving the dock now. We took MONSTER TORQUE w us.” It was Stuart Hayim signaling the start of his around Long Island record run. Stuart’s brand new 42 MTI was powered with Mercury Racing 1350’s, M8 drives and 5-blade CNC Cleaver props. And he was pumped up! (He borrowed “Monster Torque” from our blog post headline of October 2010.) A couple hours later, at 8:37 am, I received another: “Record now back in hands. Of MHP, [Mercury Hi-Performance (now Racing)] thanks to the whole team. 2 hours 11 min. Sent from my iPhone”
It took a minute for the message to sink in — 2:11. 2:11! That’s almost an hour off last year’s time — and Stuart’s previous record! The time is also about half of the record Bill Sirois and I had set back in 1968. John Tomlinson and Stuart Hayim didn’t just break the record. They smashed it! As Stuart says, “Tramps like us, baby, we were born to run!” I guess so.
I called Stuart to congratulate him. In classic Stuart speak, he said, “I can’t believe we left 11 minutes on the table. We could have run faster….When it got rough, Johnny kept asking if I was all right. I said, ‘At 65 years of age, I’m an old man, not a baby!’ …We could have shaved 11 minutes easily.”
This afternoon I received this — and it reminded me of the special man that is Stuart Hayim: “Dear Fred and the ENITRE [sic] team at MHP, now that I am back at a computer, I wanted to write a better “thank-you”. Today was a good day for a lot of reasons. Obviously, we crushed the old record, but we also will finish our fund raising efforts at more than $100,000. [emphasis added] We also, as always, gave a message of HOPE and INSPIRATION to those with Cancer.
“For over 20 years, my success in racing was tied solely to Mercury. Simply put, without MHP, I would [not] own 4 World Titles and 3 U.S.-1’s or even these little fun records like today. I also have a wife of 18 years and a 7 year old son (Max Power Hayim, what else – mph) that were bi-products of my having been a “Merc Guy” — the best “trophies” of all.
“And the progress you (all) have made in marine propulsion is mind blowing. I remember when 500 h.p. was a lot and, better (worse??), those motors were lucky to last a weekend. To have 2700 h.p. at my fingertips and run on pump gas and not worry during the race (yeah, I did imagine noises the last 10 miles, all in my head as always!), is a milestone that will, I hope, make all the fine folks at MHP proud of their accomplishments!
“Please know I am ever in your debt for making me a ‘Champ’!”
That’s Stuart. Enjoying the ride and earning the title, but doling out the credit to others. Always thanking somebody else. Always raising money for cancer charities. He’s a champ for sure.