Edmonds-based unlimited hydroplane Miss Peters and May left town Friday afternoon to start the 2014 H1 Unlimited hydroplane season. For the first time in recent years, the team is able to leave in a calm and collected manner after an off-season of preparation.
Last year, the team was scrambling to put together a new boat after the hydro from 2012 was extensively damaged in the last race of the year. The year before marked the first season with a brand-new boat.
Owners Scott and Shannon Raney are happy that they were able to spend the off-season primarily fine-tuning and building spare parts to start the 2014 season. The boat is headed to Evansville, Indiana, where will participate in a two-boat exhibition with Ed Cooper’s U-3. Cooper’s boat is the last boat to run with a piston- powered WWII aircraft engine and has not been operated the past several years due to a conflict with the sport’s management.
Next weekend’s exhibition, part of Evansville’s ShrinersFest weekend, will be the first appearance of unlimited hydroplanes at Evansville in several years. The hope is that the exhibition will convince the community to bring back unlimited hydroplane racing in the future.
After the exhibition, our local hydro will do some display work at a sponsor’s North American headquarters before moving on to the first race of the season, July 4 weekend in Madison, Indiana. The team will be in Detroit the next weekend for the Gold Cup, the most prestigious race on the circuit.
The Miss Peters and May will return home to Edmonds for two weeks to prepare for races in the Tri-Cities, Seattle and Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Then it’s on to San Diego in late September, followed by a trip halfway across the world to the season final in Qatar the weekend before Thanksgiving, making it a lot of time on the road for a local racers.
Driver Tom Thompson is expected more podium finishes in his second year, with an opportunity to pilot the boat when it is one of the most prepared of all the teams.
Look for more details about the Miss Peters and May throughout the season here on My Edmonds News.
— Story and photo by Harry Gatjens