ULHRA's John Lynch moving on?

The Last Lynch Line?

In a couple of ways, yes. It’s the last Lynch Line for the year 2008 and it’s the last Lynch Line to be written from my now former home of Auburn WA…….but the last Lynch Line ever? Is ULHRA's John Lynch moving on? Answer, below.

The new racing season commences at the end of April in Phoenix (Chandler) AZ. As I write this the Phoenix race is looking particularly good with sub freezing temperatures and snow here in western Washington State.

Lots of people think the economy right now is hazardous to motor sports. At the top end, maybe, with all of the job losses and sponsorship reductions at NASCAR teams and other series. Keep in mind the top NASCAR teams were commanding up to 25 million dollars a year from a single Title Sponsor. Here at ULHRA, according to Director of Marketing Wil Muncey, we’re finding exactly the opposite. Sponsors are stepping up. Wil and his wife-business partner-team owner Debi Muncey and other ULHRA officials have been traveling to the eastern and southern regions of the USA, meeting with media representatives, community leaders, government officials and local facility owners to build regattas for the ULHRA that are substantially east of the Pacific Time Zone…..specifically, North Carolina and Florida. Notable in this eastward reach is the revitalization of the Miami Marine stadium. The reception for ULHRA has been very good.

John Lynch
“Voice” of ULHRA Racing

Read more of The Lynch Line in the comments >>

Home for the Holidays with UL-1 Graham Trucking-Happy Go Lucky-Pump Tech

The City of Snohomish, WA held their annual “Home for the Holidays” festival and the UL-1 Graham Trucking-Happy Go Lucky-Pump Tech was there to ring in the holiday season.

Jerry & Dorothy Hopp, Greg Hopp, Saxon Hopp, Peyton Hopp, Randy Erb, Jeri Eldridge, Thayer Cueter and Uncle Al Thoreson all met up in front of Chuck’s Seafood Grotto, wwned by one of the infamous Seafair Pirates, Chuck Gibbs, where they all joined in to decorate the UL-1 with garland, wreaths, bows and lights… but what was missing?? The Christmas Frog?? The Grinch?? And what about Santa??

Well, I guess you could say the festival was a huge success… That’s right… The Christmas Frog (Thayer Cueter), the Grinch (Dena Marie of the Snohomish Chamber of Commerce), and Santa were all there to join in the festivities… You could have had you picture taken with Santa, sing a song with the Christmas Carolers, or walk the sidewalks of Historic Downtown Snohomish enjoying music from live bands.

At the end of festival, Chuck Gibbs treated the entire crew to a delicious round of his famous Fish-N-Chips. Of which, was enjoyed by all…

Story by Linda Amundsen
Pictures by Hopp Crew, Thayer Cueter & Dorothy Hopp

U-37 Blog

There is a new "Blog" out now about the U-37 Racing Team. This blog seems to focus on the team and behind the scenes, with some great pictures of repair work after Tri Cities. Take a look here for more from the newest blog for Unlimited Hydroplane racing: u37racing.blogspot.com

Webster Racing Update

Progress is continuing for the new U-22 Unlimited Hydroplane owned and driven by Mike Webster. Work on the bottom of the hull is complete, and the next step is the top side. Mike's website was recently updated. To see more pictures and more information, click here.

VIDEO: Flips and photos

Found on youtube...

Dick Gordon passes away

Richard (Dick) T. Gordon of Harrison Township, Mich. passed away December 18, 2008 with complications from heart surgery.

Gordon started the family-owned Fairlane Tool Co. and American Aircraft Parts Manufacturing -- makers of landing gear for US military fighters, both in Fraser, Mich. The family also runs Heat Safe, a company that has been a sponsor on the U-16 Miss Elam and U-5/U-7 Formula Boats unlimited hydroplanes.

"Dick Gordon has helped just about every team in unlimited hydroplane racing for the past twenty-five plus years, " said Tracy Bratvold, motor mastermind of the Ellstrom's race team. He said the family has built short and long shafts, case halves for both pistons and turbines, and other turbine engine parts. He also generously gave teams space to work on their boats while on the midwestern series races.

Gordon continued that after the loss of Rick Wayne Gordon, his son, in early August.

Dick Gordon is survived by his wife Laureen, sons Mark and Mike, several grandchildren and great grandchildren.

ULHRA Awards Banquet

ULHRA's 2008 Season Awards Banquet will take place at 5pm on Jan. 31 at the 7 Cedars Casino in Sequim, WA.

From the ULHRA website: Pre-registration and payment must be received by January 20, 2009 for $33 per person, and from January 21st up through the day of the Banquet will be $38 per person. For more information contact David Warren, email: duicasper@msn.com or Melissa Davidson, ph 425) 923-5832, email: mel.davidson@comcast.net

ABRA banquet is Feb. 14 in Madison, IN - home of the new U-1 Oh! Boy Oberto national champion.
Details >>

HydroInsider.com 2008 Awards

The voting has concluded. Watch for results of the competition in early January. Thanks to everyone that voted...!

U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto

This photo of the new U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto comes from the Madison Came Running website. If you haven't checked out this site before, you really need to. Bob Cline is a great supporter of the Miss Madison Racing Team and Unlimited Hydroplane racing in general. He visits the shop on Milton Street often, and posts great pictures to his site. It is a unique website about downtown Madison. Lots of neat stuff to browse through and he updates it quite often. Check it out for all the cool stuff about Madison and the Miss Madison/Oh Boy! Oberto Race Team

Chip Hanauer speaks out

“I was in love with racing from the first, but I’ll admit car racing was my first love,” says Chip Hanauer. “I was caught up in the romance of it, the international stars. My greatest admiration was for a man like Jim Clark who represented a great personality contrast. Here he was a mild mannered Scottish gentleman, a farmer, yet the master of his craft in an intensely aggressive profession.”

Chip Hanauer will be the keynote speaker at the 2009 BMWCCA - Puget Sound Chapter
Saturday Jan 31 @ Marriot Courtyard DT Bellevue, WA
Details >>

More Kelowna Reaction

The Unlimiteds have raced in Kelowna six times, the last time in 1999. Mira Slovak won the first race in 1966 aboard the Tahoe Miss and was followed by Mike Thomas aboard the Miss Budweiser the following year. After nearly 30 years away, the hydros returned for four-straight years, with Dave Villwock winning aboard the PICO American Dream in 1996 and again aboard the Miss Budweiser in 1999. Mark Evans won the two races in between, both aboard the PICO. While the announcement does not change the number of actual races on the 2009 ABRA schedule, it does give the organization more events on the water. A possible exhibition in Chattanooga, Tenn., is also being negotiated.

Unlimited hydro racing returning to Kelowna in 2009 >>

Next summer’s appearance of hydroplanes here is expected to be a test run. But if the city’s recent attitude to events that draw large crowds of young people to the city’s lakeshore in the summer is anything to go by, the stay may not be too long. Just ask the organizers of Wakefest.

New council to put tentative toes into festival waters >>

Kelowna Event approved

Full story at: http://www.kndu.com/global/Story.asp?s=9527404


Kelowna event is approved!

If I heard it right, the count is 5 in favor, 3 opposed. However, the motion for the event has passed and the road is paved for an exhibition race in Kelowna in 2009.

Kelowna Update

Council chair expresses support; asks for community support after exhibition. By my count, that's 4 to 2 in favor. Not sure the total number of people on the council or how the actual vote will go however...!

Kelowna: More comments

Another council comment against the proposal, citing the park would be closed four weekends out of five for events. Also, promixity to marshes - "It's not a good site. We're not hepling by promoting this type of event."

Councilor Reid described herself as "a respected environmentlist in this community"and that she will support the pilot event and the next phase in 2010 with some oversite on the environmental impact and inclusion of environmental groups in the community.

Kelonwa: Council comments during run up to voting

Councilor Hodge: "I have some serious concerns with noise and with the environmental issue. I’m not concerned we’ve done a good job in the past and that we will do a better job this time. I’d like to have seen a report on that and how we load the cranes into the park.

It’s really a pilot project for a much bigger project. I have some concerns about even the small project. Without the ability to have a staff report on that, I’m going ot have to vote against this."

Two other have expressed support; another has said they will vote against it based on noise and park closures.

Hydros in Kelowna - Council is deliberating now

A motion has been made to approve an Unlimited Hydroplane exhibition event in Kelowna for 2009... and seconded... debating now...

Kelowna Hydroplane Event update

Right now, Kelowna City Council is hearing arguments on behalf of holding an exhibition event (3-4 boats) in 2009. The mood so far seems fairly supportive, but there have been questions raised about the noise and environmental impacts - specifically about protecting the nearby marsh which has been damaged in events previously.

Live streaming audio at: http://www.kndu.com/global/Story.asp?S=9495220 >>

Tri-Cities race stop gets financial boost

The Tri-City Water Follies Association got a financial boost Thursday for the 2009 hydroplane races from the Tri-City Regional Hotel-Motel Commission, though it wasn't as much as they'd hoped for. Commissioners approved $3 per hotel room occupied with Water Follies-related visitors from a fund for sponsoring groups holding events in the area. If the event fills local hotels to the same levels it did last year, the total would be nearly $17,200. The commission capped the amount it would give at $20,000.

Hotel stays to boost hydro races >>

VIDEO: CHBC News Report - Hydros to Return to Kelowna??

Kelowna will soon decide if hydroplane racing will take place on Okanagan Lake in 2009...

Kelowna Poll Results

Kelowna's Castanet.net readers vote 4 to 1 to return hydro racing to British Columbia.

Kelowna Update

HydroInsider.com will have Live Streaming Audio of the presentation to bring Unlimited Hydroplane racing back to Kelowna, BC at the Kelowna City Council meeting on 12/15.
Read full story at HydroInsider.com >>

Breaking... active effort to return Unlimited Racing to Kelowna, BC

Proposal goes before city council next week... details to follow....

VIDEO: Boating Bloopers

You thought you were having a bad day...

... what about this guy?

Gold Cup Poster and Pins

The APBA Gold Cup 100th Running (2008) Special Poster & Lapel Pin for the 100th Running of the APBA Gold Cup (2008) are available on-line. Go to: Gold-Cup.com >>

ABRA Trophy Presentation

The City of Madison held their annual Christmas parade this past Saturday afternoon. The new ABRA trophy that goes to the National High Points Champion was presented to the Oh Boy! Oberto team. A little mishap occured, and I found this on the Madison Courier website:
When the Oh Boy! Oberto Miss Madison hydroplane reached Main and West streets, there was a ceremony to present its national championship trophy for display at City Hall. After the presentation, while the trophy was being handed down from the judge's stand, the engraved glass plaque fell off and shattered on the sidewalk.

TRI-CITIES 2006 VIDEO: Dave Villwock, U-1 "Flip and Win"

Interview with Dave Villwock, who flipped in the U-1 Ellstrom's Elam Plus, but managed to still come back and win the Final race at Tri-Cities in 2006.

That moment is being featured on The Discovery Channel. Read the story, view the photo sequence and watch four additional videos at HydroInsider.com >>

U-10's David Bryant breaks "Kilo" record...and then some

David Bryant, driver of the U-10 USA Racing Partners unlimited hydroplane set a new world record in the Super Stock class flat bottom race boat at the American Power Boat Association's Centurion Boats presents the 2008 Salton Sea Speedweek in Southern Calif.

Bryant averaged 125.507 mph in the kilo speed trap. The previous record was 122.500 mph.

Bryant was set to attempt a record run in the K class flat bottom but on Friday, just prior to hitting the start, the boat's prop shaft broke causing substantial damage. After working all night on the boat, he attempted another attempt, but "we just didn't have it," he said.
PHOTO: David Bryant, in the shades, at the driver's autograph session in Madison, 2008

HydroInsider.com Live Blog Makeover

HydroInsider.com Live Blog ~ Version 2.0 is now on-line! Please let me know what you think of the new design and any suggestions for improvements by leaving your thoughts in the comments. Thanks!

Miami Marine Stadium - UPDATE

The City of Miami has designated the Marine Stadium and the Marine Stadium Basin as a Historic Landmark. However, the city itself is appealing the designation of the Basin as it would put a crimp in the re-development plans in the Basin area.

For those of you in the Miami area, there is a presentation on the future of Miami Marine Stadium on January 10th at the City of Miami Rowing Club (next to the Stadium). For more information contact Dade Heritage Trust by email: info@dadeheritagetrust.org or by phone 305-358-9572


ARCHIVES: Miami Marine Stadium >>

Steve David on 2009

Steve David, driver of the U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison, recently hooked up with The Morning VIP radio team to talk unlimited hydroplane racing on a variety of topics.

Among his relevations:

  • Pretty good chances of racing at Kelowna (British Columbia) and Chattanooga (Exhibition) in 2009.

  • Brian Perkins will probably have a new ride in 2009, but still with Greg O'Farrell's Navy sponsored team.

  • Kayleigh Perkins should get some seat time in qualifying laps in an unlimited in 2009.

Read the full details or download the audio interview >>

VIDEO: U-31 Circus Circus and Chip Hanauer win in Milwaukee (1990)

Chip Hanauer talks about his win at the one and only Unlimited Hydroplane Race held in Milwaukee.

Posted on Youtube ~ More videos at Russ' Hydroplane Site >>

PHOTO: The New U-1

SOURCE: MadisonCameRunning.com

Former hydroplane photographer to exhibit art work

North Bend photographer Rusty Rae has captured images all over the world, from the Great Wall of China to St. Paul's Bay in Malta. His latest exhibit brings his work closer to home.

Alternate perspectives of the Valley >>

VIDEO: 1985 Columbia Cup Final

1985 Columbia Cup Final

Work starts on the final stage of The Bluebird Project

THE FINAL stage of the reconstruction of the record-breaking Bluebird hydroplane, in which speed ace Donald Campbell died more than 40 years ago, has begun.

Work starts on the final stage of The Bluebird Project >>


Bluebird Project - Official Website >>

BELOW: Video of Fatal Crash

E.C. Griffith Cup in Austrailia - Results

Warwick Lupton and the Annihilator won the E.C. Griffith Cup holding off hometown favorite Ken Lupton in Annihilator 3.


  1. Warwick Lipton - Annihilator
  2. Ken Lupton - Annihilator 3
  3. Dean Gleeson - Kyrptonite
  4. Brett Niddrie - Warlord
  5. Mark Healey - Aussie Connection
  6. Craig Lewis - Image

    Grant Harrison - GP1 - DNF
Waverley hydroplane driver Dave Alexander was "bloody lucky" to escape unscathed from a 160kph wipeout in an Australian race, a fellow driver says.

Wipeout on the water at 160kph >>

James Ray top fuel hydro crash

In this video by videographer Gil Rebilas, IHBA top fuel hydro driver James Ray crashes a high speed during qualifying for the NAPA Auto Parts World Finals on Firebird Lake in Chandler, AZ. Ray survived the accident with numerous broken bones but is expected to fully recover. To see incredible photos of this crash go to:http://markjrebilas.com/blog/2008/11/...

ABRA announces 2009 banquet site

ABRA banquet is Feb. 14 in Madison, IN - home of the new U-1 Oh! Boy Oberto national champion.

Details >>

Construction continues on Miss Wahoo rebuild

New photos of the 1957 MISS Wahoo Vintage Unlimited Hydroplane rebuild project going on at the Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum.


Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum Annual Meeting

The Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum will be holding it's Annual Membership Meeting, Saturday, December 6th at 7:00 PM. Once a year we all gather to share a meal, honor our outstanding members and elect new Board Members and Officers.
This year's dinner will include a special tribute to Roger Newton. We all know how much Roger like a good Barbecue, so in his honor we will be serving a fantastic meal including barbecued ribs and deep-fried turkey!

Because this meal is a bit more expensive and complicated than previous Annual Meeting meals, we would REALLY appreciate a good head count in advance so we will know how many Turkeys to fry. So please RSVP to David Williams at either ddw@aol.com or at (206) 764-9453 by Monday Dec 1st. Space is limited, so please RSVP soon!

SOURCE: HARM website >>

Bill Muncey's step-son is racing and winning

Roger Norman, who owned and co-drove the overall four-wheel winner in last week's Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, might not be familiar to San Diego race fans. Norman is the son of Fran Muncey and the stepson of the late Unlimited Hydroplane champion Bill Muncey. His race team is also headquartered in San Diego.

Baja 1000 champ Norman has S.D. connections >>

VIDEO: Hydroplanes in Second Life

That on-line simulation called "Second Life" now has hydroplanes!

In case you're wondering what is Second Life? Click here for the answer >>

VIDEO: Boeing U-787 Hydro @ Seafair 2008

HydroInsider.com 2008 Awards

Vote Now @ HydroINSIDER.com 2008 Awards >>

Here are the categories for 2008:

  • OPEN AWARDS - Make up your own award!

Vote Now @ HydroINSIDER.com 2008 Awards >>

E.C.Griffiths speed boat action this weekend

The Victorian Speed Boat Club (VSBC) and the Victorian Drag Boat Club (VDBC) clash head on next weekend (November 29-30) when each stages a major event, the 95th running of the legendary E.C.Griffith Cup and the season opener for the ’09 drag boat season. Scheduled for Yarrawonga’s Lake Mulwala, the E.C. Griffith Cup features the Australia versus New Zealand tussle as the mighty hydroplanes go head to head for Trans Tasman ‘bragging rights.’

E.C.Griffiths speed boat action this weekend >>


Elizabeth Wolfe made her Unlimited Light debut this last summer in Chamberlain-Oacoma, South Dakota while driving the UL-93 Desperado, owned by Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association (ULHRA) Series Partner, Dennis Johnson of Trafficade Work Zone Services. Now, she's heading to Australia. ~ READ MORE >>

Join the discussion on the fate of sports sponsorships

There are a couple of poignant comments on the In-Depth story on sports sponsorships on HydroInsider.com right now. Here are a couple:

Rick O: You have to give ABRA credit for stepping in and trying to make things happen. It's going to take professional management and dollars to keep this sport alive. I worry that the money won't be there no matter how good the economy is. But when it's bad, I just can't see where the money will come from.

Hydrotown: I'm worried about keeping my job and whether my company is going to survive. So are a lot of people. As much as I like the hydros, I would be upset if my company gave $ to sponsor a sporting event. They are talking about layoffs, yet giving money to boat racing? That would make me mad.

Ditto: I agree completely. I'd hate to see hydroplane racing disappear, but I'd hate it more if I was unemployed. It's going to be hard to pull this off and keep hydro racing together, especially the Evansville races. Good luck, ABRA. We're pulling for you!

You can join the debate by clicking this link and going to the story, scrolling down to the bottom and adding your thoughts. Or if you'd prefer, just leave your comments here on the blog.

Evansville race date may move

Instead of a June race date, the 31st running of Thunder on the Ohio, may move to Labor Day weekend.

ABRA steps in to save Unlimited Hydroplane racing in Evansville >>

Growth Alliance of Greater Evansville to take over Freedom Festival planning >>

Sam Cole comments on ABRA and Evansville race

"Today's action is a first step for ABRA. We have always said our first priority is to continue the tradition of the Evansville race. It has not been an easy process, but we see some daylight at the end of the tunnel."

Sam Cole, ABRA Chairman, in a news release

Breaking.... ABRA takes over Evansville race site

ABRA Board of Directors will take physical possession of the docks, buoys, flatbeds and other assets... the Board will take over responsibility for putting on the race and finding sponsors. The race may move later in the year...

Details to follow...

San Diego Bayfair and FormulaBoats.com team on ION Network

From the U5racing.com website: "Mark your calendars for December 18. The Men 7 TV show will feature San Diego Bayfair & the FormulaBoats.com Team. Men 7 TV is seen on the Ion Network & episodes are available for viewing at their website."

EDITOR'S NOTE: View the Men 7 TV website >>

The show's not listed on the Ion Network website, but only their high profile shows are listed... and there's no way to search on their website! Sorry, just venting.

VIDEO: Project Bluebird Update

Progress is being made on restoring the K7 Bluebird hydroplane, which broke the world speed record 7 times.


Bluebird team want to trial restored craft on Coniston >>

High speed Bluebird may return to Coniston >>

VIDEO: Miss Thriftway

Found on you tube... starts a little slow....

Racing in Detroit

An American automobile company and a Japanese auto company decided to have a competitive boat race on the Detroit River.

Both teams practiced hard and long to reach their peak performance. On the big day, they were as ready as they could be.The Japanese team won by a mile.Afterwards, the American team became discouraged by the loss and their morale sagged.

Corporate management decided that the reason for the crushing defeat had to be found. A Continuous Measurable Improvement Team of "Executives" was set up to investigate the problem and to recommend appropriate corrective action. Their conclusion: The problem was that the Japanese team had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, whereas the American team had 1 person rowing and 8 people steering.

The American Corporate Steering Committee immediately hired a consulting firm to do a study on the management structure.After some time and billions of dollars, the consulting firm concluded that "too many people were steering and not enough rowing."

To prevent losing to the Japanese again next year, the management structure was changed to "4 Steering Managers, 3 Area Steering Managers, and 1 Staff Steering Manager" and a new performance system for the person rowing the boat to give more incentive to work harder and become a six sigma performer. "We must give him empowerment and enrichment."

The next year, the Japanese team won by two miles.

The American Corporation laid off the rower for poor performance, sold all of the paddles, cancelled all capital investments for new equipment, halted development of a new canoe, awarded high performance awards to the consulting firm, and distributed the money saved as bonuses to the senior executives.

Author Unknown

More Christmas Gift Ideas

By popular demand.... keep your gift ideas for hydro fans coming!

Evansville Hydroplane Races fate may be determined soon

One way or another, Ken Muscatel thinks Thunder on the Ohio's fate might be determined by the end of this week....... Jay Rathman, president of J. Rathman Sports LLC, a sports marketing agency in Las Vegas, last week bowed out of the running to save Thunder. "The powers that be frankly don't care if there's boat racing in Evansville," Rathman said.

Thunder on the Ohio's fate may be determined by week's end >>

Unusual Christmas Gift Ideas for U-6 fans

What else would make for good product endorsement products?

Sell insurance or drive hydroplanes?

Reminded me of a conversation I had many years ago with Chip Hanauer, who said he was always reluctant to tell people he met on the street what he did for a living. If he told them "unlimited hydroplane driver" he knew he'd be peppered with questions. So he would say, "I'm an insurance salesman," knowing that likely would end the conversation.

One player's choice for manager: Chip Hale >>

Help needed...

Who knows the story behind this picture?

VIDEO: Chip Hanauer... in the slow lane

After retiring, hydro legend Chip Hanauer got reacquainted with an old flame.

Wolfe to prowl on water at EC Griffith Cup

"The campaign to hold the EC Griffith Cup on Lake Mulwala received a further boost with the news that high profile US driver Eliabeth Wolfe will attend. The coup was organized by her good friend and great supporter of the Lake Mulwala Power event previous World Champion, Grant Harrison. 'Elizabeth is a highly respected,aggressive hydroplane driver who likes not only to win, but to go out and have fun while doing it,' Grant said."



Elizabeth Wolfe made her Unlimited Light debut this last summer in Chamberlain-Oacoma, South Dakota while driving the UL-93 Desperado, owned by Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association (ULHRA) Series Partner, Dennis Johnson of Trafficade Work Zone Services. Now, she's heading to Australia.

PHOTO: HydroINSIDER.com Archives

David savoring latest success in U-6

"As soon as I got back home (to Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) reality set in and I settled into my other life," said David in a phone interview Monday afternoon. David works in real estate in south Florida."It makes you remember that we're not NASCAR racers," he said. "We're weekend racers, and we have other jobs. When I do get a chance to enjoy it, it's the little things like getting an e-mail from a fan congratulating me."

Steve David, U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison

David savoring latest success in U-6 >>

Ron Jones, Sr., to speak at ERCU Awards Banquet

The Sixth Annual ERCU Awards Banquet is coming up on Saturday, November 8 at the Great American Casino in Tukwila, Wash., and legendary hydroplane builder Ron Jones, Sr., will be ERCU's special guest.

Jones, who designed and built many of the greatest unlimited hydroplanes ever to see the water, will speak at the event, sharing memories, wisdom and advice with the assembly of ERCU members, their families and their invited guests.

Awards, too, will be presented by the ERCU Contest Board recognizing the club's Red Dot Championship Series Top-10 drivers -- including the vintage and modern season champions -- as well as modern and vintage most improved drivers and modern and vintage rookies of the year. Also to be recognized will be the Contest Director of the Year, the Sportsman of the Year, Season Sponsor, Contribution Awards, and recognition of the 2008 ERCU Rookie Class.

Last year, ERCU's special guests were Nate Brown of the Our Gang Racing Team and Dixon Smith and his 1961 Miss Bardahl restoration team -- all of whom were members of the original crew in 1961.

For more informtion about ERCU, please click here to visit our website.

For more information about the 2007 ERCU Awards Banquet, please click here to visit the 2007 ERCU Awards Banquet page.

Dubai ruler behind hydro race also invests in horse racing

The ruler of Dubai that's working with Erick Ellstrom on putting on a hydroplane race, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, has apprently spent $3 million dollars to buy a racehorse... to put out to stud.

Dubai ruler pays $3 million for Hystericalady >>

VIDEO: World GP Hydroplane speed run

Mike Southward world grand prix hydroplane speed run 179mph / 288kph

Largest hydroplane display in history...!

...up to 45 vintage and new hydroplanes from the Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum in Kent, the largest hydroplane display ever seen in the history of the sport, according to organizers.

Tacoma Dome to host historic motor sports event >>


VIDEO: Steve David: "Racing is the fans"

MADISON COURIER: "U-16 Miss Elam Plus team... may pull out as well."

Normally, we don't pass along rumors... but when they're published in the newspaper, we figure you can look at them and make up your own mind. In the article in the Madison Courier about the U-37 team for sale was this tidbit:

The changes within the U-37 Schumacher Racing Team is the first of what could be a rough off-season for the American Boat Racing Association fleet. The status of the U-10 USA Racing Partners is still up in the air after the death of co-owner Kim Gregory and unconfirmed rumors have speculated that the U-16 Miss Elam Plus team - which skipped four of the six races this season - may pull out as well.

to Source Material >>

My emails to the Elam team have gone unanswered so far...

Hydroplane Crash Survivor

Mark Workentine, the pilot in a speed boat that disintegrated at 180 miles per hour during a test run, escaped unharmed as seen in this incredible video. He talks to Harry Smith about his experience on the CBS Morning News.

2,000th Post

Hard to believe... but there have been more than 2,000 posts to the Live Blog!

The Madison Courier ran a special 24 page section on the U-6. Included in the special paper were in depth stories on the history of Miss Madison Racing, Robert D. Hughes, Steve David and the Obertoinvolvement in the town's racing program.
A special color ad congratulating the town of Madison and the crew ran, very similar to the"congratulation" that ran in the Seattle Times the Monday after the SanDiego BayFair.

Steve David to speak at R/C Unlimiteds banquet this weekend

Steve David, who drove the U-6 Oh Boy! Oberto hydroplane to the American Boat Racing Association (ABRA) national high points championship this year, and in 2005, 2006 will be the guest speaker for the Remote Controlled (R/C) Unlimited Championship Series awards banquet this Saturday at the Shilo Inn in Richland, Wash.

Events begin at 6 p.m. and will include a silent auction with hydroplane memorabilia, including a extremely rare gift from Steve David and the Miss Madison Racing team.

Tickets to the dinner banquet are $26 per person.

David, the three time national drivers champion also drove the Oberto to one victory this season -- the Lamb Weston Columbia Cup in the Tri-Cities, Wash.

About R/C Unlimiteds--Established in 1974, are a group of hydroplane enthusiasts who race 1/8th scale Radio Controlled models of Unlimited hydroplanes, of the past and present. The size of our propeller driven boats are approximately 2 feet wide, by 4 feet long.

We use .67 (11cc) sized marine inboard engines that produce around 3HP. Our top boats travel in excess of 60MPH!!! Our over 100 club members race over 125 different radio controlled unlimited hydroplanes ranging from the 1954 Miss Cadillac to the latest 1997 Miss Budweiser. We run a fourteen race circuit throughout Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

While the size of the boats may be small, the competitive juices, excitement and challenge are all as large as they are for our full sized counterparts.

U-21 Freedom Racing update

Despite rumors to the contrary, the folks that own the U-21 confirm there is no pending sale. So if you're interested in owning a 200-mph billboard, you've still got a chance....

BREAKING: U-37 up for sale

"Jane and I have decided to pursue other interests and have been trying to sell the U-37. We have lost Beacon (Plumbing) as a sponsor but we are presently speaking with a couple potentials that are showing some interest ... Our team is still together and they are looking forward to racing next year. If we do not find a buyer and we do find a sponsor, then Jane and I will race the U-37 until we do find a buyer."

U-37 owner Billy Schumacher in the MADISON COURIER

If a buyer isn't found before the start of next season, Schumacher told the Courier they plan to race in 2009.

Read full article >>

VIDEO: On-Board cameras for Miss Bardahl October run

Dixon Smith takes the restored 1962-65 Miss Bardahl for a few laps around the course at Lake Chelan, WA during the October 2008 test session. Top speed is approximately 150 MPH. More information at http://www.missbardahl.com.



Latest Info I Have From Evansville

I have overheard some things about Evansville. I heard the possibility that some sort of festival may happen about a week or two earlier than the traditional Thunder date. Boats were mentioned but could not get anyone to confirm that! I do know that some sort of three day event may be planned with carnival rides being located about a block from main and riverside. Possibly the old Kenny Kent car dealership lot.  If I hear of anymore updates I will pass along.  

I have also heard that air show permits are normally turned in by now, and nothing for Evansville has be filed.  This is a rumor I heard  and I struggled with posting that information, but maybe a reader of the blog may have more information that could shed some light on the truths of the air show permit rumor and when they are normally filed.

The Evansville docks are still located on a flat bed truck in their normal off season location.  This information was passed on by a longtime Thunder pit volunteer.

Mike Fetscher

Record Run for Electric Powered Hydroplane

Found on YouTube: Michael Bontoft runs 98.806 average at run for new UIM Kilo record (pending certification) in battery powered Hydro. Michael Bontoft makes kilo run of 98.253MPH 2 way average for APBA record in battery powered Hydro.

Ferrari Arno XI Hydroplane

In 1953 the Ferrari Arno XI set a world 800kg-class speed record of 150.49 mph. Surprisingly this little guy can do 20 mph which scaled up would be way faster than the real thing. You can get the the remote controlled Ferrari Arno XI hydroplane for $2,000.

IwishIhadthis.com >>

Rick Bridgeman: Story and VIDEO

Rick Bridgeman's career as a hydroplane racer ended that day on the Columbia River. His life and love of the sport did not.

Easing off the throttle: Hydro racer leaves cockpit
but not sport >>


After you read the article above, you may want to view the video below of Bridgeman's flip from the HydroInsider.com archives from Columbia Cup 2005.

Hot Boat

U-7 FormulaBoats.com is featured as a "Hot Boat of the Month" in, where else? Hot Boat magazine. Follow the link then go to page 43...

Two different SRT U-25 hulls being built

Rick Lentz and Nelson Holmberg -- two former members of Dr. Ken Muscatel'sSuperior Racing Team, during the early 2000s -- are working on two different versions of the SRT U-25 hull, which are expected to be christened next spring.

And the race is on >>

Success runs in the household

Sabrina David, wife of U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto driver Steve David received Jarden Chairman's Award. Out of the company's 10,000 domestic employees, five were selected to receive the Chairman's award of merit for their contributions to the company.

Sabrina was recognized for her work as worldwide corporate payroll director. Jarden was recently added to the Fortune 500. Around 160 were nominated and that number was reduced to the final five.

Sabrina David and her four other award winners were treated to a weekend in NYC beginning with the awards luncheon in the wine cellar of the famous 21 Club. The luncheon included the Chairman, Vice Chairman and COO of Jarden.

Jarden now owns Sunbeam, Coleman, First Alert, Mr. Coffee, Healthometer, US Playing Card, Ball Jar Co, K-2 sporting goods, Rawlings, Shakespeare, Abu Garcia, Pur fishing, Rival, and a host of others

VIDEO: U-6 Oh Boy! Oberto @ The Nut Club Parade

The National Champion U-1

VIDEO: Pat Haworth vs. Jimmy Shane in the Finale Grand Prix Long Sault 2008

Steve David headlines R/CU Awards Banquet

R/C Unlimiteds Oh Boy! Oberto Championship Series
2008 Awards Banquet

Date: November 1, 2008
Place: Shilo Inn, Richland, WA
Time: 6:00 PM to 11:00 PM
Bar: There will be a no host bar open starting at 6:00 PM till 7:30 PM

Dinner Buffet: This will start at 7:30 PM.
Chicken Dijon, Braise Tenderloin Tips, Tossed Caesar salad, Chicken and Pea orzo salad, Greek Salad, Roasted Red Potatoes, Fresh Fruit Tray, Dinner rolls with butter, Assorted desserts and Fresh Brewed Coffee and Tea.

Guest Speaker: 2008 high points driver Steve David of the Oh Boy! Oberto team

Silent Auction: We will have some items up for a silent auction as in years past. We are trying to get items that the members would like to add to there hydroplane collection: If you want to be there just go to rcunlimiteds.org for the order form. You don't have to be a R/C U member to come!

Hydroplane racing at the Museum of Flight

Miss Exide, in the middle, is being lapped at the end by Miss Spokane and Miss Madison at the finish line. Mark Waddington's Miss Spokane won with a final burst at the finish line.
Museum of Flight '08 >>
Northwest Historical Miniature Gamer

Gotta love the roostertails!

FLASHBACK: Mike Hanson, 1994

Mike Hanson stepped into to the Miss Budweiser cockpit in '94 and helped injured driver Chip Hanauer and Bernie Little's team gain a National Championship.

Despite some damage to the race boat [right side of photo], Bernie Little was able to laugh about it. Fourteen years later, Hanson again worked his way to a National Championship this time as the Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison Racing crew chief.

PHOTO: Owen Blauman

Oberto launches Eatlikeanalpha.com

Oberto launches Eatlikeanalpha.com where U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto hydroplane fans can enter for a chance to win two tickets, round trip airfare, and three nights hotel accommodations to Super Bowl XLIII. That means you can bring anyone you want, your mom, girlfriend, dad, buddy, pal or even your sidekick.

To enter, you'll need the UPC code from an Obert Jerky package. Then go to Eatlikeanalpha.com and click on the SuperBowl logo in the left corner.

Warby wants to break speed record

He may be nearing 70, a little slower in his reactions and lot tighter fit in the cockpit these days, but Ken Warby, the world's fastest man on water, insists he's still crazy enough to give speed-record racing another go.

No time to slow down, Warby aims to go faster >>

Greg Hopp & UL-72 win ULHRA Championship

ULHRA @ Port Angeles - Finals

  1. Greg Hopp
    UL-1 Graham Trucking G.T. Happy Go Lucky
  2. Kayleigh Perkins
    UL-72 Miss Boat Electric
  3. Kip Brown
    UL-8 Sterling's Famous Steaks & Seafood
  4. Michael Flaherty
    UL-11 Straitthunder.com presents ROXY 94.5 - Power Punch Performance Lubricants
  5. Vince Xaudaro
    UL-929 Xaudaro-Wilmot Racing
  6. Wil Muncey [ ONE LAP PENALTY ]
    UL-00 Trafficade Safety Sales presented by Warning Power.com

Heat 1A

  1. Greg Hopp UL-15
  2. Wil Muncey UL-00
  3. Chris Grant UL-3

    DNS. Vince Xaudaro UL-929

Heat 1B

  1. Kayleigh Perkins UL-72
  2. Michael Flaherty UL-11
  3. Kip Brown UL-8

Heat 2A

  1. Greg Hopp UL-15
  2. Michael Flaherty UL-11
  3. Kayleigh Perkins UL-72

    DNS. Kip Brown UL-8

Heat 2B

  1. Wil Muncey UL-00
  2. Chris Grant UL

    DNF. Vince Xaudaro UL-929

Port Angeles ULHRA racing Update

Sunday weather is much better at Port Angeles and racing is underway.

Live Stream from ULHRA >>

Saturday's Results

Beautiful... is the the way that one could describe the morning... Sun peeking through the clouds and nothing but hearts racing and the sound of feet scrambling to prepare for the Victoria Express presents Strait Thunder.

With reports flooding in of a potential storm, the start of racing was moved up. The drivers and crew members worked as fast as they could, but just didn't seem to be enough. Mother nature was it's uncooperative self today.

The Lighter than Lights (LTL) class was able to complete 2 heats with Joe Perkins in the Y-28 Perkins Glass taking 1st place in the 4 cylinder LTL class and Kevin Eacret in the E-36 Block Head Machine taking 1st place in the 8 cylinder LTL class.

Activity was called prior to the start of Unlimited Lights heat 1A due to severe ground swells and increasing winds, making Port Angeles Harbor unraceable. During the warm up period, drivers Greg Hopp in UL-15, Wil Muncey in UL-00, Kip Brown in UL-8 and Vince Xaudaro in UL-929 all signaled to officials that conditions on the course were treacherous.

Officials then issued a 'black flag' signaling that all boats were to return to the pits. As the afternoon progressed, conditions only worsened. 3 boats were able to test briefly late in the afternoon though conditions remained questionable.

"A Different Kind of Horsepower"

When not shooting unlimited hydroplane racing, photographer James Crisp takes pictures at other sporting events. On Saturday in Lexington, Ky., he found this story that will interest all hydro racing fans. Story and pictures by James Crisp:

Former Pay N Pak hydroplane owner David Heerensperger's horse "Indyanne" won the 28th running of The Thoroughbred Club of America "Win and You're In Filly and Mare Sprint Division" race on Saturday in Lexington, Ky.David and his wife Jill were happy as they entered the winner's circle after their 3 year old filly with jockey Robby Albarado aboard bested a field of 8 winning the Grade III, $300,000 race.The stable colors worn by Albarado were orange and yellow- a scheme not totally unfamiliar to hydro fans.As the celebration and interviews wound down I briefly spoke to Mr. Heerensperger."Congratulations" I said as we shook hands, adding "I was a big Pay N Pak fan when I was growing up". Looking at me with a mix of surprise and curiosity I added "I'm from Owensboro originally" to which Jill replied, "Oh yes, Owensboro is nice." (The winged wonder won the 1974 Kentucky Governor's Cup in Owensboro.)Not being able to resist I said to David "You know, you should get back into boat racing" which he answered with a wistful "oh.....". I quickly added "There is some good equipment out there for sale" to which he replied "Yeah since Bernie died there is some nice equipment out there". I stated that I thought that while that gear was gone there was some other equipment available. "I think there may still be something in Bernie's barn" he added as the conversation wound down and he headed on to a post race celebration.The win qualifies Indyanne for the Breeder's cup to be held this fall in Santa Anita, Ca. For those foreign to horse racing, the Breeder's Cup is a collection of races similar in stature to the Gold Cup, World Series or Superbowl with total purses exceeding $25 million.Regardless of what they race, it would seem the Heerensperger's commitment often leads to the winner's circle.

Read More about Dave Heerensperger

Listen to Steve David's radio interview

Download the MorningVIP radio team's interview with Steve David by clicking here. It's a zip file which you'll need to unzip before listening.

Unlimited Lights Live Streaming

The ULHRA championship will be decided this weekend in Port Angeles, WA. The weather's iffy for Saturday, but looks better for Sunday.

CLICK HERE to watch the Live Stream and to get race times >>

Steve David on the radio


The show will air from 8-10 AM CENTRAL time. We will try to have Steve on the last hour so all you fans out west can tune in on the web cast.
If you do miss the interview, www.morningvip.com will podcast it later that day.

But if you do get up and listen then try to call in because they will be talking with Steve about his National Chmpionship season, including his win in Kennewick, Wash., the upcoming 2009 season and the re-running of the100th Gold Cup. Calls are welcome.

Photo by Todd Tamayao, U-37