SEA DUCER


SEA DUCER, a 1940 16Ft Chris Craft Special Race Boat. Hull #42160.  Ttoday this boat would easily be the focal point of many collections.  So imagine in 1963, what could be a greater boat for a teenage kid to run around the lake in? Mason ran  track and cross-country at Leelanau Schools (His records after 45 years, have never been broken) .    In the fall of ’63 while on a long training run he stopped to rest at Seeburger’s Marina on Glen Lake in Leelanau country.  Already loving old mahogany speedboats,  young Mason was drawn to the long rows of boathouses housing many wooden inboards.   One sleek 16 foot racer caught his attention and when he enquired, he learned that it was a locally famous speedboat named SEA DUCER.  When new in 1940 it had been a high school graduation gift for a Leelanau Schools student, Bob Beyerly, who in 1963 had just traded her in on the purchase of a pontoon raft.  Best of all it was for sale for the astounding price of $600.  Negotiations with Mark’s parents and his brother Tom ensued over the holidays. During the winter a deal was struck with Dexter Seeburger to refinish the boat and deliver the boat to Brown’s Lake,  South of Jackson, Michigan 250 miles away , all for the original asking price of $600.  In the months and years ahead  Mark and his brother Tom spent countless hours restoring , running and water skiing behind SEA DUCER.  Mark went on to become a tournament water skiier and SEA DUCER’s old KB “racing engine” would pull a slalom skier at speeds of a solid 34 MPH.  On several occasions she pulled 6 water skiers for pyramid ski formations.  By 1973 Mason returned from his stint in Korea with the US Army.  By then he owned a triple cockpit Chris Craft and two 1920’s Gold Cup Boats.  He had returned to finish college and his brother was in graduate school working toward his doctorate.  So SEA DUCER went on the blocks and was advertised for sale in Hemming’s Motor News. She was sold to Gary Van Norman from Vancouver, BC. She was shipped cross country in a climatically controlled container truck and was not heard from for three decades.  We now  know that she found her way back to Minnesota in the 1990’s.  Sometime around 2005 Mason got notice that Alan Jackson owned SEA DUCER and was having her restored to her former glory. She was re-christened SWEET SIXTEEN.