Boat Review: Roscioli 80 Tournament Sportfish

Prolific megayachts these days fish well, cruise long distances and boast amazing top speeds.

September 30, 2008

I must commend today’s builders on what I refer to as “mega-sport-fishermen.” When these larger-than-life vessels first came on the scene some 20 years ago, they qualified as luxury yachts, certainly, but they didn’t really function as efficient offshore fishing boats. The prolific megayachts these days, however, are cut from an entirely different cloth. Fishermen got involved in the building process, and now these big bruisers fish well, cruise long distances and boast amazing top speeds. The boat that met us at Pier 66 in Fort Lauderdale was the sixth hull of Roscioli’s 80-footer series and the first with MTU’s new 2,400 hp engines.

This boat lends all-new meaning to the term “stately.” For example, the 80-footer climbs up onto plane effortlessly. In fact, unlike so many boats where you must push the throttles to the stops to get on plane and then back off to your cruise setting, the Roscioli just rises majestically to whatever setting you choose. We hit 32 knots before I even knew it.

With easterly winds at 20 knots, seas ran five to six feet offshore. Throughout the several hours spent running every direction, not a drop of spray landed on the enclosure. This 80 comes equipped with trim tabs, but at no time did I feel the need to use them. It just seemed to run automatically at the proper angle whether running up-sea or down. In general, this Roscioli rides so smoothly and quietly that your speed becomes quite deceptive. Checking the electronics for verification, I discovered that most of the time – no matter what the sea state – we cruised at a comfortable 25 knots at 1,625 rpm.


The Roscioli 80 banks into a turn gently and reverses direction in about four boat lengths – far better than average for a boat this size. However, for emergency “dodge” maneuvers, it responds with lightning quickness to minor course deviations.

From a fishing performance standpoint, 600 rpms makes for a good 7-knot trolling speed and produces a virtually turbulence-free wake that smoothed out like an aquarium.

I wouldn’t qualify this 80-footer as having welterweight agility, but we backed down straight and in complete control at 9.7 knots. I don’t believe most anglers can reel that fast. Nonetheless, most skilled captains should manage to keep their angler’s line tight and the fish on the corner by combining gears, throttles and the bow thruster when necessary.


The Roscioli 80 comes with either an enclosed or open flybridge. The enclosed version allows you to choose between a helm in the center with guest seating surrounding or a traditional helm all the way forward. Either option comes with an exterior set of controls on the aft overhang for fishing.

In addition to the tremendous guest seating you’d expect to find on the flybridge of an 80-footer, Roscioli provides some innovative features here as well, such as spinning rod storage built into a bulwark and a table large enough to use for dinner service. Of course, you’ll find additional storage under every seat, in the console and in the brow.

One thing I really appreciated was the opportunity to finally use all the brand-new Furuno NavNet 3 navigation electronics. I must say it performed just as Furuno promised during its debut at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show a year ago.


Speaking of the electronics, Roscioli built Lexan covers for all of the electronics pods, and when they’re open, they form what amounts to an extra windscreen for the helmsman.

Huge, beautiful and well organized – those are the terms that best describe this cockpit. That’s one of the main differences between this Roscioli and most of the now-ancient mega-sport-fishermen. Convenience features include wing storage for mops and gaffs, multiple stainless-steel freezers in the mezzanine and great cabinet storage under the cap rails to port and starboard. Suffice it to say that the Roscioli 80 provides even the most demanding angler with everything he or she could want in a cockpit and more.

The wide-open salon with a straight settee and facing seats on each end also features a big counter with stools and a second dinette. The galley counters (and all others throughout the boat) consist of granite veneers over an aluminum honeycomb base to save an enormous amount of weight. And as elsewhere aboard, this 80-footer provides artfully engineered storage everywhere, doing a particularly masterful job of using dead space.


So far, Roscioli offers the 80 in three layouts: All boast three staterooms and three heads, but one version offers a full-width master stateroom amidships with a fore/aft berth. And all three include a captain’s cabin with a double berth and two single bunks for crew. Although you can choose what you want, this particular boat sported an all-teak interior with satin finish.

I was surprised to find all halogen lights in this hull as the industry has mostly passed that era in favor of cooler-burning, more efficient LEDs – which are also available if you so desire.

Engine Room
It’s easy to stand up straight in the mammoth engine room that’s kept spotless by the seemingly obligatory Delta T ventilation system with de-misters. And as with all the painted surfaces elsewhere, the entire engine compartment received a coat of nonporous snow-white Alexseal epoxy paint for easy maintenance.

For another innovative twist, Roscioli routes the exhaust system through advanced Von Widmann zero-backpressure mufflers. You’ll be hard pressed to find more effective or quiet exhausts. You can barely hear the twin MTU M93 common-rail diesels rated at 2,400 hp each as they turn the 2.03:1 ZF gears. Sea Torque thrust bearings on the shafts only add to this boat’s efficiency and stealth.

Although there’s plenty of room to get outboard of the engines, Roscioli really doesn’t put anything out there that you’d want to get to. Everything you need to access is near centerline or on either end.

Design and Construction
Roscioli constructs its NMMA- and ABYS-certified 80-footer using non-woven, biaxial and triaxial fiberglass, ortho-phthalic gelcoats and vinylester resins sandwiching various core materials such as Divinycell, NicaCore, WebCore and Baltek end-grain balsa – depending on the location and function. Over the years, Roscioli – often accused of “overbuilding” its boats – has taken out some of the weight but has never sacrificed strength or structural integrity in the process. And that’s a tough balancing act!


Deadrise……13 degrees
Weight……115,000 pounds
Fuel……3,100 gallons
Water……350 gallons
Max Power……T 2,400 hp MTU
16V 2000 M93 common-rail diesels
Price……Price on request

Roscioli International / Fort Lauderdale, Florida / 954-581-9200 /


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