It is the first time since 1963 that an American crewed pleasure boat has been authorized by the U.S. government to sail to Cuba. The trip took less than two hours and beat the old record by over four hours!
The Apache Star, already a two-time world champion in speedboat racing and capable of reaching speeds well over 100 miles per hour, broke the current record with owner and driver Roger Klüh.
Apache Star - originally named Apache Heritage - broke several records and won two world championships in 1992 and 1993. In preparation for the record attempt, she received a series of modern upgrades as part of an extensive restoration, including new custom helmets and Recaro racing bucket seats based on technologies developed for fighter jets. Two Mercury Racing bi-turbo engines, producing a combined 2,700 horsepower, have already propelled the Apache Star to speeds in excess of 115 knots during initial test runs.
Owner/driver Roger Kluh grew up around boats and also enjoyed numerous summer vacations in the south of France during his 15-year career as an ice hockey player in Germany's elite league, where he developed a love for offshore performance boats.
Roger had also been to Key West in the early 1990s to witness the Apache Heritage successfully win two world titles. When the opportunity to acquire this legendary race boat presented itself in 2012, he jumped at the chance, and rather than simply let the boat rest on its past glory, he immediately began a thorough overhaul to set a new world record for the fastest crossing between Florida and Cuba.
It took more than two years to prepare the Apache Star for this record attempt, and more than three years to obtain the necessary permits. But the wait is now over.
Source: Bill Springer,