VIDEO: Crash during qualifying in Seattle 1998

Crash while qualifying in Seattle 1998


REMINDER: Registration deadline for ABRA banquet in Feb. 2nd.

U-1 backup hull on display

Some photos of the backup Oberto at the "Racing in Indiana: Gathering Before The Green Flag" event in Indianapolis this past weekend.
PHOTOS: Stacy Phillips, Indianapolis

U-16 Elam and Dave Villwock in 2009

I chatted on the phone with Erick very recently. I'm sure it's OK to share part of our conversation. Erick stated that he will be running a national boat in 2009...So Dave (Villwock) should have his normal ride this year.

U5/U7 Owner Ted Porter on Hydropage Forum
Read his full remarks >>

ULHRA adds German camera company as sponsor for 2009


And the Voice exclaims, "Side by side and so close they look like one boat" into the microphone. The crowd of spectators leans heavily against the fence to catch a view as the contenders power slide around the last corner and hurtle deck to deck past the last exit buoy. Bounding from sponson to sponson the two hydroplanes remain inches apart from each other as the fans strain on tip toe to get a better view. The weight of the crowd actually bends fence stanchions as the official waves the heralded checkered flag to christen the winner. Thunder resonating from thousands of horsepower blends with the cheers from the fans as the first boat soars over the finish line.

Who won? Who cares? A close contest is what competition is all about. Minox cameras (pronounced MEE-NOCKS) is a camera company joining the Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association in continuing the encouragement of just that type of marine motorsports. Parity on the race course has become a hallmark of the ULHRA and a constant source of pride amongst the individual teams and fans. Sponsors like Minox want to help the fans capture that quality of contest with excellent equipment. In addition to that, Minox has created a brand new award that will actually reward drivers for racing that way.

Most racing fans are acquainted with the “photo finish " which implies that a contest was so close at the finish line that it took the careful scrutiny of a photograph by officials to determine the winner. At every regatta on the ULHRA 2009 national circuit, Minox will award a model 8022WP camera to the driver who wins the closest finish in first place.

The “Minox Photo Finish Award " will be presented at each race after the determination is reached by a small panel of officials appointed to the task. All participating classes of hydroplanes and all heats of racing at ULHRA-sanctioned events qualify for consideration.

Source: ULHRA, Muncey Marketing

VIDEOS: U-13's J. Michael Kelly races in New Zealand

Kelly is racing in "The Boss" - the black boat. This was the restart of Heat 2B after The Boss lost its cowling and the debris made racing conditions hazardous. He finished 2nd.

BELOW: This is the first running of Heat 2B, where the cowling blew off.

JMK had to withdraw from the first heat when his boat had mechanical problems... then after heat 2B, the boat lost a gear box and was done for the day.

PHOTO: Cowling breaks loose during JMKs New Zealand race

The moment when the cowling broke loose in J. Michael Kelly's "The Boss" racing in New Zealand.

PHOTOS: J. Michael Kelly racing in "The Boss" in New Zealand

More celebration for the U-1 Miss Madison / Oh Boy! Oberto

The Madison Regatta is planning a party/dance to celebrate the U-! Miss Madison / Oh Boy! Oberto national championship... details coming soon.

Gotta love that U-1 logo...!

Tampa Sports Club to Honor Bernie Little

For the 48th time, the Sports Club of Tampa Bay will honor the area's best and brightest sports achievers at its annual awards banquet. At this year's event -- at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 13 at Higgins Hall -- six athletes will be inducted into the organization's Hall of Fame.

Bernie Little -- The most successful owner in Unlimited Hydroplane racing history. His Miss Budweiser team won 134 of 354 hydroplane races, along with 22 points championships and 14 Gold Cup titles. Little died in Lakeland on April 25, 2003.

Bay Area's Best Will Be Honored >>

JMK Update

U-13's J. Michael Kelly is racing in New Zealand in the UIM Grand Prix hydroplane championships. According to Kelly, he lost the cowling in his first run but finished 2nd in the re-start.

In the next race, a gear box went out. That puts Kelly officially in 7th place after the first weekend of racing.

Read about the day in JMK's own words >>
H20 Full Throttle Forum

Race Recap >>
Sail World

UIM Grand Prix live streaming now free....JMK racing.

Watch JMK compete live in New Zealand races on Sunday, Jan 18

From Ned Dawson:

For all those who can't be in New Zealand to watch J.Michael Kelly and the rest of the teams compete in the UIM GP Hydros race then here is the next best thing. Speedbox is broadcasting the race live on the internet so you can watch it. The whole day only costs you $9.95 NZD (which is about $5.00 US) and they even have live help desk if you have any problems.

Hear it direct from J. Michael Kelly does the luge in New Zealand

U-13's J. Michael Kelly is reporting from New Zealand as he prepares to race in the UIM GP boat races.

We went and did the luge yesterday and I would have to say that we definitely need to bring this back home. I even used a helmet cam so we got some cool footage of us screaming down the hill.
H2O Full Throttle Forum

PHOTO: H20 Full Throttle Forum

“Yes we are in the process of finalising things. The deal is more or less through but there are some formalities to be completed. It will be a great boost for us if we can host such a high quality event,” QMSF president Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor al-Thani confirmed to Gulf Times yesterday.
Qatar plans to host US boat racing >>

U-37 Helping the U-22

We all know that the sport of Unlimited Hydroplane racing is a team sport. Stories of rival teams helping other teams in need of help are heard often. Recently the U-37 team spent time helping the new U-22 Webster Racing team driven by Mike Webster. Crew Cheff Scott Raney (seen above at Madison with driver Jean Theoret) flew to Reading, PA to help this fledgling team by answering questions to help prepare them for life on the ABRA tour.

Known by many in the pits as "Pyro," Scott Raney was at the Webster Racing shop for three days offering useful advice. As Mike writes in an email: "He answer lots of questions concerning the gearbox, plumbing, skid fin, rudder, electrical systems, and exhaust."
Work continues on preparing the once Allison powered former "Tubby" owned by Ed Cooper to make the transformation from piston power to Lycoming T-55 Turbine. Mike and father Steve picked up the hull in October 2008.

Three eye opening days flew by for Mike and his team, saying "While answering many questions, it also created many more - leaving us to realize just how much we really need to learn before we come up to speed. It really gives us an appreciation for just how much technology is really involved in the sport."
The team's goal is still to make the 2009 season. They're working hard to make that goal a reality.

VIDEO: KNDU/Tri-Cities reaction to Qatar announcement

VIDEO: Boat Racing in Qatar

Formula 1 racing video from Qatar... shows the course and the city backdrop.

Video from

VIDEO: Proposed race course for Qatar

LINK: video on ABRA site >>

Includes tour from Sheikh.

UPDATE: JMK down under

Just an update for you. Picked up J.Michael Kelly and Andrea from the airport here in Auckland, New Zealand this morning.

After a spot of breakfast they are headed down south to look at the venue for the second race of the series on Lake Karapiro. From here it is overnight in Cambridge to enjoy the scenery and then tomorrow through to Tauranga where the race is being held.

Major TV station here TV3 is doing a story on his visit and he will get his first drive of the boat on Friday morning.


Race in Qatar to be called Oryx Cup. What's an Oryx?

Glad you asked! The Oryx is an animal native to Qatar.

According to Wikipedia:

Oryx is one of three or four large antelope species of the genus Oryx, typically having long straight almost upright or swept back horns. Two or three of the species are native to Africa, with a fourth native to the Arabian Peninsula. Small populations of several oryx species, such as the "Scimitar Oryx", exist in Texas and New Mexico, USA as captive populations on wild game ranches
PHOTO: Wikipedia

Qatar Photos: The Qatar venue

PHOTOS: From the ABRA Qatar Trip

Thunder on the Ohio tentative dates set

August 28-31 is the tentative date. Not finalized, but close.

Read more in Gordon Englehardt's article in the Courier Press >>


Sam Cole: In addition to Qatar, we have interest in Abu Dhabi, Dubai.

Erick Ellstrom reacts to Qatar announcement

Erick Ellstrom to Sam Cole, ABRA: "We can't thank you enough."

Up to 10 boats in Nov 2009 to Qatar. It's a done deal!

Breaking... ABRA announces international venue

Wow. ABRA has 3 yr deal to race in Qatar.

Something big is up

We're told there will be a "very major announcement" from ABRA's Sam Cole on Tuesday morning. Stay tuned...

U-3's Jimmy King - three generation on ice

The faceoff marked the third time three generations of the King family have been part of one team, with a Port Huron International Silver Stick Hockey Tournament title in their crosshairs. Bob King, the coach of the Flags, stood next to his son Jim on the bench as they watched Bobby King, Jim's son, help the Flags earn a 2-1 victory at McMorran Arena against the Mississauga (Ontario) Jets.

Generations meet on ice >>

U-13's J. Michael Kelly competing overseas

This note from Ned Dawson:

Well everyone, only a week or so left before the UIM World Championships for the Grand Prix Hydros here in Kiwiland. J.Michael is all set and packed and ready to head downunder to drive Peter Knights famous boat called Boss Mobil 1.

The following link will have updates as we get closer as well as updates from throughout the days heats and racing so please stop in and join the forum to get all the latest as one of America's young guns takes on the Ausies and the Kiwis.

PHOTO: J. Michael Kelly (right) with Steve David (left) on the docks at Tri-Cities
CREDIT: Paul Dughi

VIDEO: Drag Boat Crash

FYI... the driver was OK.