Dustin Charrier: The ‘Young Gun’ of Pro Runabout open

Special to

Today's News-Herald
Published Sunday, July 10, 2011 6:06 AM MST
LAKE HAVASU CITY — All young guns of racing have to begin somewhere. For Dustin Charrier the life of eating and breathing the world of personal watercraft racing began at the age of six, when his father, Dean Charrier, started to get involved with the racing scene. By the time he was 8-years-old, Dustin Charrier traveled from state to state as his father raced the IJSBA National Tour.

Kay Sykes Photo/Special to News-Herald. Dustin Charrier, of Orlando, Fla., races the professional division during the 2010 Quakysense World Finals on Lake Havasu. Charrier was able to go home with a second place trophy.

In 2003, at the age of 13, Dustin started out in the junior ski class. By the time he turned 16-years-old he was ready for the world of high speed and power when Dean put him on board a runabout for the beginner class at a small local race in Ohio. Quickly moving up in ranking he was able to finish out the year with a world title in the Novice Runabout Limited class.

In 2008, Dustin and his family were settled in the small town of Noblesville, Ind., with a population just shy of 52,000, but bigger and better things were waiting for them in Florida, and the opportunity for more practice time and training for his next national or world title.

It was that same year that the young man went on to win another world title, but this time at the pro-am level, in the runabout limited class.

2010 was the year for Dustin. Being a year older and more in shape he was able to join the ranks with the best of the best in the Pro Runabout open class. Winning sporadically on the local circuit, Dustin said he was focused on one thing — a world championship his first year as a pro.

The possibility was there. A Yamaha Factory team rider, Dustin had the best in the business supporting him – Dean’s team building him the fastest watercraft possible and Riva Racing providing the parts needed to make that happen.

The reward was a National Championship and an impressive second place finish at the 2010 Quakysense World Finals.

“My goal ever since I started racing runabout was to place top three in the world in Pro-Runabout Open. I came in second overall,” Dustin said.

Currently Dean’s team rider, Dustin is racing the 2011 UWP/IJSBA National Tour, running fourth in points behind the more seasoned professionals of Dustin Farthing, Erminio Iantosca and Trey Frame.

“I grew up watching guys like Dustin Farthing and Chris MacClugage battle it out on the race course. I used to love watching the pro’s race on the tour. I’ve been around it for most of my life, so racing and traveling feel like a normal life to me,” Dustin said.

Racing is not the only important thing for him though. Dustin is currently enrolled at Valencia Community College in Orlando and will be attending the University of Central Florida next summer, with his sights on a degree in engineering.

“I am so proud of him, how he has managed to maintain all of his grades during all these years of racing and continues to do so through his college years. I am a very proud mom,” said Donna Charrier.

Round 4 of the National tour was scheduled to take place this weekend in Rochester, N.Y., however the races were canceled. The next stop is scheduled for July 16-17 in Belle River, Alberta, Canada.

Dustin said he intends to participate again this year in the 2011 Quakysense World Finals, Oct. 1-9, at Crazyhorse Beach.

For more information about the World Finals, go to http://www.ijsba.com. National tour information may be found at http://www.uwpinc.com.