KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) — Powerboat racer John Tomlinson is teaming with Myrick Coil to defend their 2016 world crown during the Key West World Championship.

The three-race-series begins Wednesday in the Florida Keys.

Piloting Performance Marine, Tomlinson of Miami and Coil of Osage Beach, Missouri, placed first in three of four national races to earn the 2017 national title in the Superboat class. Tomlinson holds more than 18 national and world titles.

Performance Marine's most likely competition will come from Stihl, piloted by Florida's Jake Noble of Lakeland and Grant Bruggemann of Bradenton. The duo took second in the 2017 national points competition.

Another Superboat class favorite is WHM Motorsports, owned and driven by William Mauff of East Setauket, New York.

Almost 40 high-speed boats are registered for the event that ends Sunday.

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Online: Super Boat International, http://www.superboat.com