Paul Fiore, the founder in 1979 of Hustler Powerboats of Calverton, N.Y., died on Nov. 26 following a short illness. He was 76 years old. An influential builder of high-performance powerboats, Hustler introduced a stepped ventilated deep-vee running surface on its 40 Hustler in 1986, a feature credited with popularizing the stepped-hull design. The Hustler Tek Step bottom introduced in 1993 on the 50 Hustler later received a U.S. patent.
Fiore was the father of Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats founder Mike Fiore, who died following an accident in the 2014 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Central Missouri. Though Fiore often describe himself as “retired” from the boat-building world, he continued to consult with Outerlimits.
Paul Fiore was known as an innovative and intelligent boat builder. In 1985, a Hustler 32 powered by a pair of 630-hp stern drives was one of the first offshore powerboats to top the century mark, hitting 106 mph, according to the Hustler Powerboats website. Four years later, the company introduced the 388 Slingshot that also had a multi-step design and was successful in offshore powerboat racing.
Fiore is survived by his wife, Diane, and daughter Donna, who works at Outerlimits, plus his former wife Joyce, the mother of Mike and Donna, and grandchildren Nicole, Sophia, Jet and Moxie.