Updated with Friday’s results.
Jimmy Shane qualified the Oberto hydroplane at just over 162 mph Friday afternoon to be top qualifier at this weekend’s Bayfair hydroplane race in San Diego. Shane was followed by Kip Brown who qualified the Spirit of Qatar at just under 160 mph.
A total of 9 boats qualified for the racing Saturday including our own local Edmonds hydroplane Miss Peters and May, driven by Tom Thompson to speed of just under 148 mph. Two boats remain to qualify and will be given the chance Saturday morning.
Racing starts in the early afternoon with the first set of preliminary heats. Two more sets of preliminary heats as well as a winner-take-all final will be held on Sunday.
Eleven unlimited hydroplanes are now in San Diego for the final stop of the U.S. portion of the hydroplane tour. After this weekend’s race, the only thing left on the 2014 schedule is the Oryx Cup in Doha, Qatar.
Shane in the Oberto and J. Michael Kelly in the Graham Trucking have been fighting all year for the season championship. Shane has a 923-point lead with 3,200 points available in the final two races. Three other boats are still mathematically eligible for the championship, but are so far back as to leave these two as the only logical contenders.
Miss Peters and May, owned by Shannon and Scott Raney and driven by Tom Thompson, is currently in sixth place and out of contention for the season crown. The team has shown promise at the Seafair race and could be a contender for the race win in San Diego.
Dave Villwock, all-time leading race winner, was seen Thursday in the pit area. He is serving as team manager for the Beacon Plumbing hydroplane, although he won’t be driving the boat. Villwock was suspended from driving for this race as a result of a collision at Seafair.
Complete reports of the action all weekend long will be available on My Edmonds News.
— By Harry Gatjens