The flame that burns twice as bright burns half as long,” wrote the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu. Few burned more brilliantly than Don Aronow, the king of Miami’s Thunderboat Row. The dead-end, north Miami boulevard was red hot in the 1970s and 80s with a cadre of go-fast pioneers led by Aronow, a world champion offshore racer, builder and founder of Cigarette Racing.
Both Thunderboat Row and Aronow are long gone, but Cigarette Racing remains under the guidance of Skip Braver, CEO and owner since 2002. Braver’s experience with on-road exotics was an ideal match, leading to high-profile collaborations with Mercedes AMG and Ducati motorcycles that expanded the customer base beyond the poker run crowd. To celebrate their golden anniversary, Cigarette Racing aimed to stick to their guns but also continue to push the bar on aesthetics and performance.
Two years in the making, the 59-foot Tirranna honors 50 years of offshore racing as the largest offering in a line of performance boats and center consoles from 38 to 50 feet. She “had to be a flashy performance boat and look like a Cigarette,” Braver said, and the 59 delivers on both fronts. Powered by a sextet of 400-hp Mercury Verado Racing outboards, she’ll see a top end of 63 knots. And the aggressively raked, carbon fiber hardtop is the perfect complement to a jet-black hull (“It took six weeks to paint the boat,” Braver told me) set off by miles of red leather. There’s no mistaking the 59’s pedigree.