In Loving Memory of Bob “JR” Noble (1958-2016)
Bob “JR” Noble was originally from Grand Rapids Michigan and moved to Orlando, Florida in 1989. He was a successful business leader, Offshore Racing Champion, loving father, son, brother and loyal friend. His passion for the outdoors and extreme sports manifested into establishing a professional offshore race team in 2007.
2007: Purchased 32′ Doug Wright to race in the Stock Outboard Class
2008: Won National and World Championship-Stock Outboard
2010: Purchased 2010 Skater 388′ and rigged with twin 525hp Mercury Racing engines to race in the Cat Light Class.
2011: Won National and World Championships- Cat Light.
2012: Re-rigged Skater 388 with twin 750hp Scorpion Enterprise engines to run in newly formed Super Boat Class.
2013: Won National Championship- Super Boat Class.
2014: Won National Championship- Super Boat Class.
2015: Commissioned new 2016 Skater 388 to be built.
2016: Completed new Skater 388′ hull was delivered to Grants Signature Racing and rigged with 750hp Scorpion Enterprise engines to continue to race in the Super Boat Class. (*In late 2016, Team STIHL converted from Scorpion to Sterling Performance engines)
Bob “JR” Noble passed away in his sleep early in the morning of Tuesday, March 8th, 2016. As a true Man of STIHL, he was respected and admired throughout the United States and even around the world. He will be sorely missed and long remembered by those who knew him as a friend, and man of great character.
His legacy of racing will live on through his team.
Driver/Owner – Jake Noble
Following in his father’s footsteps, Jake began racing in the Superboat Stock class in 2014 in Clearwater, where he took third place with throttleman, Ryan Beckley. Beckley mentored Jake for that race and the two competed together again in 2015 in Cocoa Beach, taking second place and also in Clearwater.
The original STIHL Skater 388 owned by BobKat Racing Inc was recently sold and in it’s place is a brand new 2016 Skater 388. The new boat will have the same power as before: twin 750hp Scorpion Enterprise engines with Mercury Racing Speedmaster #6 drives.
Jake will be joining veteran throttleman, and close family friend, Grant Bruggemann in the new boat for the 2016 season. His goal is to spend time with family and friends, doing what his father loved to do. “My dad did so much to help promote this sport, I hope I can do the same. I am looking forward to learning from Grant and having another successful year for BobKat Racing.”
Jake is employed by STIHL Southeast Inc. in Orlando, Florida. He lives in Lakeland, FL with his dog, a Corgi named O’Riain, aka- Littles.
Throttleman – Grant Bruggemann
Grant Bruggemann rejoins the STIHL Offshore Racing team for the 2016 season and beyond. A long time racer, Grant brings a wealth of throttling experience, as well as 20 plus years of marine rigging. He and JR previously shared the cockpit from 2007 – 2013 in the STIHL stock-outboard boat, Cat-Light, and Super Boat, winning both National and World Championships together.
Grant also stays busy running his highly successful rigging/race shop, Grants Signature Racing. Located previously in Ft. Lauderdale, he moved the shop to the west coast of Florida in 2013, settling in the Sarasota/Bradenton area. His shop rigged STIHL’s original Doug Wright Stock Outboard, the Cat Light and Super Boat 388 Skater, as well as many other championship winning race boats.
When he isn’t racing or working, Grant enjoys riding motocross and mountain biking. Grant lives in Bradenton, Florida with his wife-to-be, Kellie.
Crew Chief – Dave Hutchinson
Dave Hutchinson has been a focal point of the STIHL Racing crew since the team’s inception. His responsibilities include transporting the boat and trailer to all races and corporate events, setting up and maintaining the pit area and assisting in preparing the boat on race day. He is also the primary spotter for the team.
Dave, otherwise known as “Hutch”, is STIHL Southeast’s Merchandising Specialist. He has been with the company for over 10 years and is responsible for the layout of STIHL products on any recently installed new STIHL dealerships and remodels.
Official Crew Members
Jessie coordinates a large amount of the pre-race planning and logistics. She submits the proper paperwork and books the hotel rooms & other travel arrangements for each race. On race weekend she assists in selling STIHL Race Team collateral, including t-shirts, hats, etc. She is employed full time by STIHL Southeast Inc.
Tony performs a variety of duties during race weekend. He helps set up and break down the pit area and assists in the sales of STIHL Offshore Racing collateral items. He is employed full time by STIHL Southeast Inc.
Craig is an invaluable member of the race team. You will never see him sitting down on the job- he can always find something to wash, wax, or polish.
Kellie manages the many aspects of STIHL Offshore Racing’s social media outlets- Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and the website. She also assists Jessie with logistics and paperwork whenever she can. During race times you can always find her in the pits helping out by handing up tools, washing the boat, assisting with merchandise, or whatever else needs to be done. She is employed by Grants Signature Racing as Office Manager.