Immediately after the Big Rock tournament in Morehead City, North Carolina, I was able to catch up with the latest build from Ricky Scarborough Jr.—Hull No. 14, Triple S. The walk from Big Rock Landing to the city marina was a short but pleasant stroll through fishing history. I was greeted by owner-operator Todd Smith and mates Travis Morrison and Calib Michelini. Smith is a North Carolina local who was quick with a firm handshake and welcoming smile as he happily prepared to walk me through every inch of this fully custom 72-foot build.
Coming out of a great production boat, Smith decided to give Scarborough a shot back in 2019 and started the build shortly thereafter. After some pandemic-related delays, he finally took delivery in early 2023. I had been reviewing the build’s highlight sheet on the flight up from South Florida and was excited to check her out.
Cockpit and Bridge
Stepping into the cockpit, you can tell that this boat is built to chase big gamefish anywhere, anytime. If you need it, she has it: plenty of deck space, a Release Marine Trillion fighting chair, freezer space in the step, a convertible livewell/fish box in the transom, hydraulic outriggers, in-deck livewell fittings, and a 1,000-pound Dometic ice chipper.
Triple S sports mezzanine air-conditioning, cooling drink holders, a double four-burner grill positioned on top of the tackle station, and a cockpit shower that features both hot and cold water. The tackle center also features custom inserts for keeping all your tools right where they belong. The teak-decking seams are finished in white, which creates a nice departure from the usual, and is an accent of which I have been seeing more and more.
Heading up the ladder to the flybridge and the custom Palm Beach Towers structure, you see Scarborough’s trademark logo engraved into each step. The helm resembles a command center, and as owner-operator, Smith knew exactly what he wanted at his fingertips. He elected to go with three massive 24-inch Garmin displays. Garmin and Furuno radars and a Furuno Omni sonar are paired with those displays. A Simrad autopilot and a Furuno NavNet black-box unit can run both the Garmin and Furuno chart plotters. When looking backward, a custom-mounted 10-inch Garmin display drops out of the overhead teaser-reel box into perfect view of the helmsman.
Forward of the helm is a custom-molded armchair for Triple S’s primary angler and Smith’s wife, Shelley. The queen’s chair features two air-conditioning vents and chilled drink holders in each arm. After this review, we might see a few more of these custom bridge layouts on the drawing board.
To port, there is an additional lounge chair with enormous freezer space underneath fitted with custom dividers, which easily has enough space to store bait for an entire season.
Salon and Accommodations
Entering the salon is like walking into a designer’s showroom. The best of the best is on display here, but the highlight is the massive island that features a beautiful Brazilian Amazonite granite countertop with shades of greens, grays, whites and gunmetal. Mounted under one side of the island are six Sub-Zero refrigerators/freezers, with Release Dubliner bar stools on the other. Smith explained that he didn’t need a formal dinette because everyone always stood around and socialized while eating, so keeping that in mind, he opted for the oversize island. And where the dinette typically would be, he designed a custom bar with a hideaway pop-up drinkware holder and custom bottle storage, a drink chiller, and a Hoshizaki ice machine.
The galley features top-of-the-line Wolf appliances and a glam mirrored backsplash of subway tiles. Aft in the salon sits a white L-shaped sofa, with a funky yet beautiful day head. The day head features a custom wash basin with starfish accents and an indestructible penny-round-tiled floor.
Forward of the salon, a custom electronics room is found on the starboard side, and a full-size pantry is to port, all with beautiful high-gloss finishes and Carpathian burl accents in the companionway.
The accommodations are set up in a four-cabin arrangement, with a VIP on the port side with a queen-size bed and a private head; a double-bunk cabin and a double captain’s quarters are separated by a Jack-and-Jill head with a recessed hammered-copper sink to starboard. The heads feature the same granite countertops as the galley.
The master is arranged forward and features a custom oversize queen bed, custom storage throughout, a large frameless TV, and a private head. Arguably, the star of the show would be the custom tackle room built by Paul Bright, which is located just aft of the master and houses a full arsenal of gear. Terminal-tackle storage resides here as well and includes a rigging table with a removable padded workstation. Any angler can sit in this room and just stare in awe. A short clip I posted of it on social media already has nearly 1 million views, and unlike most topics online, we all agree here that the wow factor is at an all-time high.
Engine Room and Performance
The engine room features twin Caterpillar C32Bs at 2,400 hp per side, as well as twin 27 kW Caterpillar generators, all accented by a mirror-polished stainless-steel overhead, which makes the 6-plus-foot-high space look larger, but it also allows you to visually inspect the tops of the engines.
Moving forward, a dedicated pump room was organized and air-conditioned, and contained a custom freshwater recirculating cooling system for all of the pump components to eliminate raw-water cooling from the equation. Twin FCI watermakers, the chiller system, and an ElectroSea Clearline system are also present, and aft of the engine room sat the Seakeeper 26 and ice chipper.
Running out the Beaufort Inlet, Smith put all 4,800 ponies in gear. The Scarborough 72, paired with CJR running gear, quickly got up and raced to the east with all six turbos spooled up. At 2,050 rpm, we saw a fast cruising speed of 38 knots with a 90 percent load burning 110 gph per side. As we dropped back to an economical cruise, we saw 32 knots at 1,750 rpm with an 80 percent load burning 80 gph per side. Dropping the hammers to wide-open throttle (2,230 rpm), Triple S rocketed close to 44 knots and burned 127 gph per side.
Smith then put the 72-footer through her paces, backing around in all directions and spinning the boat hard on a dime. If Smith asked for it, the boat gave it to him with what felt like a smile.
After the sea trial, I got to kick back and speak with Smith about his plans, which consist of a busy travel schedule of tournaments and fun fishing. When I asked him, “What’s next?” he quickly responded with his own smile. Another Scarborough, no doubt, and what will most certainly be another head-turner.
Scarborough Boatworks 72 Specs
- LOA: 72’
- Beam: 20’
- Draft: 5’10”
- Displ: 118,000 lb.
- Fuel: 2,400 gal.
- Water: 400 gal.
- Power: Caterpillar C32B; 2,400 hp
- Gear/Ratio: ZF/2.25:1
- Propellers: CJR, 5-blade
- Paint: Awlcraft 2000, Light Gray
- Climate Control: Dometic