• Mercury Racing Blog: Bravo on the Bayou

    Iím fortunate to annually represent Mercury Racing at the Bass Master Classic in the Mercury booth. This year, a fisherman named Rick asked me if there was a Mercury prop that would work for him. He had recently purchased a 2012 Triton 19XS powered by an OptiMax Pro XS 200. Rick was frustrated with the performance. The sharp turns and switchbacks on the Bayou where he runs were causing his propeller to break loose. This forced him to back off the throttle, causing the boat to lose speed and drop off plane. Rick had contacted his Triton representative regarding the issue. Although they discussed various options, the rep suggested Rick continue using a three blade prop.

    The performance facts that I gathered in our conversation pointed me to a Bravo I XS. I told Rick the prop is designed specifically for low-emissions 2-stroke OptiMax outboards. Rick responded, ďIsnít Bravo I a sterndrive prop?Ē

    I explained the Bravo I was first conceived as a sterndrive prop. However, Mercury Racing modified it for use on outboards as well. At Racing, we sweat the details ó creating a perfectly balanced prop with a tuned exhaust tube, durable blades, clean leading edges and uniform cup heights. All of these unique features work together for enhanced 2-stroke outboard performance.

    Mercury Marine reps celebrate another BASS Classic victory. (L-R) Scott Reichow, Kevin "KB" Brown, Mike Shedivy, Randy Qualls (Legend Boats), Chris Lane (2012 Classic Winner), Michelle Kilburn, Steve Miller

    Rick was genuinely interested in the Bravo I XS. He asked, ďWhat kind of planing speed and top-end speed can I expect when compared to my current prop? More importantly, will the Bravo I XS stay hooked up in turns?Ē All good questions.

    I had asked Rick if he had a jack plate. He said he did. I asked him to get a bench mark with the Bravo I XS by starting at Tritonís recommended engine height for a three-blade prop. I then suggested he raise the engine in 1/4″ increments until he finds the sweet spot. In Rickís application, the sweet spot is 3/4″ up from factory recommended height.

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