Hydroplanes tested new technology on the Columbia River

H1 Unlimited boats tested a new GPS unit on the Columbia River in Pasco, WA. The U-11 Peters and May & U-88 Degree Men had first crack at the Columbia River.

The GPS unit was in the boat and the base unit was on land for H1 officials. They use it to track boat speed. They want to keep the boats from driving up to the starting line slowly and waiting until the flag drops. The U-11 and Craig Kairis of GPS Flight helped to develop the new program.

"This is just a device that will transmit to the race officials what the speed of the boats are, the speed they're traveling at. There's been a trend developing where the boats are getting slower and slower as they jockey for position, which isn't really exciting for the fans. So with this device we're going to determine a minimum speed limit," U-11 driver JW Myers said.

Like Couer d'Alene, Idaho exhibition and race?

Unlimited Hydroplane are headed back to Couer d'Alene, Idaho after a long absence. H1 Unlimited announced they will bring five boats for an exhibition Labor Day weekend in September this year.

Longtime fans will remember the Diamond Cup, which ran at Lake CDA for years. They will bring back the Diamond Cup name and make it an H1 Unlimited and APBA (American Power Boat Association) sanctioned event. Sources report that next year the Diamond Cup will be a full race.

HYDROINSIDER ARCHIVE VIDEO:   For your enjoyment, the 1959 Diamond Cup race!