What is ThunderCat racing?

A ThunderCat is an inflatable catamaran that flies on the water at speeds up to 70 miles per hour and weighs less than 200 pounds. They are also called Super-Light Tunnel boats (SLTs). The boat has 4 hulls that literally inflate prior to use. They are equipped with a two stroke Tohatsu or Yamaha outboard motor.


In order to race one of these bad boys, you need two team members– a pilot and co pilot– that work together. The pilot runs the engine, and the co-pilot sits on the front edge of the boat, keeping its balance. ThunderCat racing started during the eighties in South Africa. It has now spread to 18 countries, widely known in S.A., Australia, New Zealand, the UK, and many more on the Pacific. At Northeast ThunderCat Racing, we will set up our customers with a full rig, clinics, and races– coming soon in America.

There are different classes of racing.


This is a short course, close to the shore. Approximately 220 x 330 yards. This course is where you see all the action!

IMG_8806 (640x597)


This course is slightly larger, approximately 550 x 550 yards. The ThunderCats get some serious speed in this course, over 65 mph.



This is serious– we’re talking a walk in the woods versus hiking Everest. At a length of over 60 miles, teams of two in each boat race to different locations or checkpoints usually a day at a time. At each checkpoint the teams must run onto the beach up to the line and race out back into the water. These guys are out in all conditions!

Here’s what a ThunderCat looks like:

Zapcat Evo - Drawing

Here’s one in action:

IMG_4927 (2)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s