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Weather has been terrible around here for any weekend fishing. Got some things kicking around for the boat, but nothing worth reporting on yet. So, time for a little reminiscing!

 

Lets start with the "First Flight" photo.

 

havredegrace_zps1185ac71.jpg

 

This was back when we ran regional races, meaning typically less than 6 hours from the house. Maryland, Virginia, and North and South Carolina were the places we raced. Lot of times we would get up early Saturday morning and drive to the site, and be back home late Sunday night. There was very little prize money in these races, but each place had a unique characteristic about it that brought you back year after year.

 

Havre de Grace was definitely one of those places. We nicknamed the place the "Run for the ducks". First place prize in each class was a hand carved wood duck on a mount with an engraved plate. Second place was a waterfowl print by a local artist, and I cannot remember what third place was. Before our annual trek to this place stopped, my brother and I managed to end up with 3 ducks and 2 prints, and we were darn proud of them!

 

1985 was my third year driving. Started in 1983. Dad had laid the ground rule that none of us could race until we were out of college, in order to keep our mind on school and not everything else......right. In 1983, we had bought a boat we built about 4 years ago, and ran it the first year. It was ok, but we knew we could do better, so we built a new one that winter. It took most of the next summer to get it handling properly (or so I thought...will talk about this in another story), and the boat had good top end (86 mph from a stock 75 hp engine). Made our first trip to Havre de Grace in 1984, but did not do as good as we hoped since it was still during the time frame of getting it right. This was also before a lot of the safety rules were implemented requiring driver capsules and safety belts. All we had was a fiberglass seat to sit in and nothing to hold you in it other than a strong grip on the steering wheel.

 

The date of the fateful picture, it was an overcast day and there was a breeze blowing across the course from the back stretch to the front stretch. The course here is rather unique in that you run under the Rt 40 bridge. First race I had been to that had that, so I was a true rookie for this kind of stuff. Oh well, no need to let it intimidate me.

 

As I recall, there were 6 Sport E boats this weekend. We were running two 5 lap heats, running starts on a 60 second countdown clock. First heat went pretty good for me and I believe I placed second. All I needed to do in the second heat of the day was win and have a larger lead over the second place boat (assuming that was the one that beat me the first heat), and the duck would be mine.

 

The start of the second heat did not go as well for me as the first. I was a little early on the run up to the start line and had to back out of the throttle some. When the flag dropped, I was in third place. Rounded the first turn and on the back stretch got on the up trim and the boat was running light, but the trim gauge was where I thought it should be. Managed to pass the second place boat at the end of the straight, but the boat was a little squirrely due to the wind blowing across the course. I do remember setting the boat a little too hard in turn 3 and it wanted to hook and spin out, but I caught it. Down side was I gave up second place and was back in third again.

 

I am mad as hell at myself now and drive the boat hard the next lap, eventually passing the other boat again going into turn 3. At the same time, we have made some progress on the first place boat, and common sense decided to take a holiday at this point.

 

Exiting turn 4, I trimmed the motor back out to the mark i had on the gauge and took off after the lead boat. Boat did not feel right as soon as I did this...something felt out of place, but I did not pick up on what it was right away. As we approached the bridge, I recall the bow of the boat rising, and I instinctively leaned forward in the seat. That was enough of a change in the balance of the boat to bring the nose back down. I do not think I let off the throttle at this time because I was catching the first place boat, as you can see his wake in the top picture just in front of me. Since I thought it was all under control and leaned back in the seat just as I was going under the bridge, the damn bow shot up again. Again, I leaned forward, but this time it kept climbing. In both pictures, you can see my helmet waaay forward over the wheel. Duhhhhhhh.

 

The next thing I remembered was seeing the tips of the sponsons of the boat about 50 yards from me and my orange helmet floating in the water between me and the boat. I apparently hit the water with enough force to rip it off my head. This is no joke what I am going to say next....I honestly thought my head was still in that helmet at that time!!! At the time, I was rattled enough to not realize if I could see everything, my head must still be attached! It took a few minutes before I came to my senses and knew I was ok. Rescue boat picked me up and had the paramedics give me a quick once-over to be sure I was ok, then released me.

 

Recovered the boat and the only real damage was the rear cowling was ripped. A little bit of fiberglass work and it would be good as new! Dried the motor out and got it running within the hour, so it appeared to be fine.

 

As for what caused the blowover, remember when I said the wind was blowing across the course from the backstretch to the front stretch? When the wind hit those bridge supports, it was causing turbulence on the backside. I was not smart enough at the time to realize it, but there was enough air swirling behind that abuttment that it upset the airflow under my boat. Some of the other drivers said they felt it, too, but they were not running with their bow up as high as I was, so it did not affect them as bad.

 

The real irony of this picture is that I was on the front page of the Sunday edition of the Baltimore Sun Sports section. All because of a damn wood duck.

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great story, and some one knew just where to be to get the shot

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As Rotorwrench pointed out, this was the "event" that caused Dad to remove the trim gauge from the cockpit. When I told him something felt odd, he wanted to know where I had it trimmed. Without even thinking of the impending result, I told him right where I always run it on the straights. His response...you don't need that damn thing; learn to drive by feel and stop relying on your instruments! That gauge was out by the next weekend.

 

Bad thing about it, the remaining races that year I was like a blind man trying to figure out how to drive that boat....all over the place on the trim! We did not run worth a damn, and looking back at it now, this was one of those cases where I had gone one step forward, then two steps back in the "learning process".

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Here is a funny one for ya. We were had a race in Ocean City, Md in 1986. My crew was made up of my two younger brothers (Mike - 1 year younger than me and Brian - 3 years younger) and my dad. Room assignments on this race were Brian and Dad in one room, Mike and I in the other. Loved going to this place as there was lots to do at night. The motel we were staying in was on the beach and just across from us was another motel with balconies facing our room.

 

Had a decent day racing in Saturday and did the normal beach stuff that night. Since I was racing again the next day, I told Mike I was heading back to the room. He had a key, and all he said was not to use the deadbolt.

 

I wake up Sunday morning and see that Mike is not in bed. Not a good start. This was also before everyone carried cell phones, so there was no way to call and find out where he was. I showered and got dressed, then walked out on the balcony of our room to see what the weather was like. As I am standing out there, I hear someone yelling and find the source of the noise....its my damn brother waving like an idiot from the motel balcony across the street and up a few floors! And to make matters worse, he has a nice female companion with him :wtf2: I yell at him to get his butt back since I had to be at the driver's meeting in a little over an hour.

 

Mike gets back to the room and gives me the quick run down on how he met the girl I saw him with and her friend right after I left (figures). They hit some of the finer establishments in walking distance, then he got invited back to their room. At this point we will just leave it at he spent the night there.

 

Next morning after he saw me, he told his new friend that he had to leave. She said that would be fine, since her mom was supposed to be picking her and her friend up a little later. What???? He ends up finding out the two girls are slightly under age and had fake id's. They had talked her mom into letting them stay the weekend at the beach and mom got the motel room for them and left. At that point, Mike had heard enough and was out of there as fast as he could get his stuff together.

 

Mike : 1

Dan : 0

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How I came up with the name 2-N-TOW

 

My brother and I had been racing for about 5 years now. It was getting a little expensive driving two trucks and trailers to races, plus it made it hard to have enough relief drivers for the late night drives. A few years prior to this, commercial trucks were starting to pull double trailers, so we figured if they could do it, we could do it! Surge brakes on both trailers and we were good to go!

 

2ntow_zpsbdf97a99.jpg

 

We towed this way for ten years and only got questioned about it twice. First time was at the Ohio Turnpike Toll Booth. Toll collector said she did not think that was legal, because she only saw horse trailers being towed that way. Of all people, my dad tells her that each trailer has 75 horses on it! "Well" she says, "I'll let you through, but I still have to call it in." We did not wait around for her to call it in, needless to say!

 

Second time we got stopped was in Pittsburgh, PA. It was late Sunday and we were pulling out from the Three Rivers Regatta. The pits were located on the bridge, so we were in the heart of downtown. Made it a few blocks from the bridge, heading to the interstate, when a local police officer flashes his lights and pulls me over. This time we are driving the Suburban, so we were about 67 ft long. He walked around the boats and truck twice, then returned to my window and said "Son, I don't know what you have here, but no way in Hell can it be legal. My best advice to you is to get out of here now and don't let me see you again." Well, dear old dad strikes again and blurts out "Hell, we were trying to leave when you stopped us!"

 

Rigged up this way, we have gone to places like Lowell, MA, Kansas City, Aurora, IL, Alexandria,LA, and countless trips Florida. Never had any accidents. Just had to remember to never pull into someplace that you might have to back out of, and make WIDE turns.

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So where are the boats now? When did you get out of it?

Edited by blown66nova

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#23 (my boat) in that picture was sold in 1991 and I re-painted 236 when I took over driving it. There was a new boat being built in the shop in the picture at this time. I then drove that boat until 1998, took over my brother's boat when he took a 2 year break and sold my boat to someone down in Florida. I drove 2 more years before the BOSS told me it was time to grow up and stop racing. That boat ended up in Canada and was raced for another 5 years. Funny thing was the guy that bought my boat picked it up on my boys 6th birthday. He had a hell of a time getting it back across the border. I was on the phone the next day for over an hour talking to the Canadian Border patrol answering all kinds of questions about it. Seems that Canada has an extremely high tariff rate on items being brought north that can be purchased from a Canadian supplier. I had to explain why this was a unique craft and could not be easily manufactured by just anybody.

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Never would've attempted tried that set-up, and downtown Pitt, that would be a pia. Don't care for that drive in just my suburban. Not enough tongue weight would make for a scary situation...

 

Thought the boys were the reason for 2-n-tow.

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The boys were the reason I started using the name. Prior to the kids, we always joked that we were easy to find...just look for the 2 boats in tow. It was just a perfect fit when the twins arrived, except it now applied to other things outside of racing. Everywhere we went, the boys have been with us, so 2-N-TOW was so much more appropriate now. Heck, I even changed the license plates on the Suburban to that because of the kids. Funny how history has a way of repeating itself.

 

As for tongue weight, never a problem. Boat, motor, and trailer weighed in around 1,400 lbs. We had it figured out what additional stuff needed to go on each trailer to have the correct tongue weight so the trailers were not drivlng the truck.

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I have driven around Pitt and don't like it without towing anything! Guess it's true, you have to give it your all if you want to get anywhere in life.

 

Thanks for sharing these stories. I too thought the name was related to the kids, but the trailer package really adds something!

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I think it was 1988. There was a race in Charleslton, SC put on by the local club. We were racing Sport E at the time (stock 75 OMC). Saturday morning at the driver's meeting, the referee asked the our class if we would be ok if one of the local club members ran in our race. It seems this guy had picked up a tunnel hull and had a Yamaha 70.

 

The gentleman introduced himself to us, and he was a BIG guy; not fat or obese, just a big boned, muscular man. He was about 20 years older than the rest of us,. grey hair, soft spoken, and did not look like what one would expect from someone driving these types of boats. His name was James, and thanked us for letting him have the opportunity to run with us. He assured us he would stay out of the way and keep to the outside of the course.

 

This whole deal should have been setting off alarms bells as this guy was putting himself at a huge dis-advantage and why would someone want to drive a race boat on a course where he was spotting everyone else a huge advantage. Being young and dumb, we all figured we would just put a good old azz whuppin on the guy, and that would be it. Strike one.

 

The races would be two 10 lap heats. The course was set off the beach across from the Marriott on Lockwood Drive. There was no way to either crane launch, so we had to use the public ramp across the river next to California Dreaming. It was a little humorous watching James get ready and climb into his boat. Remember I said he was big, well once he sat down in the boat, it looked more like he was wearing the boat! Even his helmet appeared out of proportion. Damn...another miss and a strike!

 

Starts would be a flag start, where all boats would line up and approach the judge's stand off plane. Any point within 50 yards of the start line the referee could drop the flag to start the fun. I was lined up on the inside of the course and remember taking a quick look down the line of boats and seeing James lined up way outside the last boat. Odd that he was looking down the line of boats back to the inside of the course and not at the flag, like the rest of us. Guess this is all something new to him

 

The flag drops and it is a mad scramble to the first turn. Got the boat settled down and took off after the first place boat on my inside when I looked straight ahead and saw this boat way ahead of all of us doing a slow, wide arc through the turn. :wtf2: It was James!!! How in the heck did he get there so quick?? We got the answer to that question on the backstretch. James was slow through the turn and we managed to catch him coming off the exit pin. All of a sudden his boat threw a rooster tail that we never saw on any other Sport E boat and he was gone! Did the same thing at the next turn, slowed down and took it easy, then repeat! We had been snookered.

 

After the race and the boats were back in the pits, the truth finally came out. We figured we were running against a stock 70 Yamaha. WRONG. Find out that James is a gear head, and that so-called stock motor was far from it. Even though he was running probably 75-100 lbs heavier than the rest of us, that motor had the torque to make that tunnel hull dance. Some of the locals starting talking, too, and said they had heard "rumors" he could run over 90 mph. Strike 3!

 

James turned out to be one heck of a nice guy, though. He knew he could not race competitively like we did, but enjoyed being there so much that he helped fund one of the local guys for the next 10 years. Oh, and the stories he could tell would keep you in stitches! That slow, low-country accent fooled you, though. He was one heck of a businessman and had the toys to prove it.

 

Funniest story was how he ended up with a V-8 powered motorcycle. Supposedly, him and some friends had been at Bike Week enjoying themselves. When the week was over, back home and working. About 6 weeks later, he got a phone call that his bike was ready for pick-up...huh? All he could figure out was that he had ordered a bike while there and apparently put a deposit on it. He suspected he was "caught up" in the atmosphere of Bike Week at the time, ordered it, then forgot about it. I will let you fill in the blanks on how that could possibly happen :whistle: . He drove that bike for the a few years, so it was not like it just gathered dust.

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Great stories...great reading! I always thought it was the boys as well. As Paul Harvey would say, "Now...for the rest of the story"

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Like most other "significant events", it is funny how history repeats itself in regards to how that name came about. I have some great memories from the race boat part of life, but would not trade it for the real 2-N-TOW name now. As aggravating as they can sometimes be, I would not want it any other way. It was actually my wife's idea for the license plate and we both agreed it was a perfect fit with the twins.

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Another one from when we were racing just "local" events.

 

Cambridge, MD was a nice place to go to. It was a combination Inboard / outboard event. Big damn course since the inboard boats typically raced on a 1 2/3 circuit...too long for tunnel hull boats, but the Mod VP guys (production fiberglass tunnels boats with a center pod powered by 2.5 litre Mercury).

 

The racing was ok at Cambridge, but what we liked the most was the seafood feast the locals put on for the drivers on Saturday nights. The food and friendship alone was worth the 3 hour drive. All the steamed crabs, shrimp, fried fish, corn bread, and beer you could eat or drink. Remember, this was back when we first started racing, so we were not as "serious" about it. It was not uncommon for a few racers to wake up the following morning with a wicked hang-over from the night before and decide they would just watch the racing on Sunday. I never did fall into that group because Dad was with us and would reign us in before it got out of hand.

 

There was a group of racers out of Rockaway / Oceanside, NY area. Every damn one of them were a character. Walt raced Sport E with us, then there was Jimmy D, good buddy of Walts that had a fast Mod-VP boat. Walt had his wife with him at most races working as the pit crew; Jimmy always had some of his friends with him. Both were some of the best people to know and would do anything to help you out, but Jimmy was was still single, and the stuff he did would put you in tears from laughing so hard. Some of the crap he pulled I would not have believed if Walt had not actually seen it!

 

The two of them were heading to a race, jimmy in the lead truck and Walt following him. Driving through an area with a bunch of traffic cones on the side of the interstate, blocking off the emergency lane. Jimmy gradually drifts over far enough that the front right bumper is just catching the cones and shooting them off the highway. Not just an occasional cone; every darn one! This was before cell phones were in wide use, so Walt pulls over into the left lane and catches up with Jimmy. Him and his wife look over at Jimmy and there is nobody behind the wheel! Jimmy is sitting in the passenger seat, buck naked, smoking a cigar and driving! His pit crew is in the second seat (he had a 4 door pickup) laughing their butts off! Jimmy just smiled at Walt and wave at him like there was nothing unusual about his driving style.

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Been slacking off, but got a little time to kill

 

When we decided to move to the "BIG LEAGUE" (I will get into the decision for this in another post), one of the neat places we ran was downtown Columbus, Ohio on the Sciota River. Small darn river and tight course. From the starting dock, you ran straight across the river to the backstretch, hard left, then through the bridge arch doing a slight left hand drift. Hard left hand turn about 100 yards north of the bridge, then back down the front stretch (now doing a long, right arch - and these boats do not handle well turning right). After passing through the starboard arch, it was about a 200 yard run to the next turn, then back up the back stretch.

 

Since this was such a tight course, only 10 boats were allowed to run in the final. This resulted in the need for qualifying races, since it was not unusual to have 16 to 20 SST-60 boats at a race. We unloaded ran some practice laps that were decent. Crane put the boat back on the trailer and we were done for a few hours until race time.

 

I got bored and decided to have a little "fun" since the pits were packed tight and every other driver could see what you were doing. We had a slick adjustment plate under the motor that allowed us to raise or lower the engine height. I grabbed a box wrench and socket wrench to initially check the engine mounting bolts to make sure they were snug. Noticed some of the other guys were watching me, so time for the fun. Bolts were tight, but I then went to the adjustment bolts and went through the process of making it appear that I was changing the motor height about a quarter inch. My friend Phil, who is helping us this weekend, walks over and in no uncertain terms asks 'What in the hell are you doing?"

 

In a low voice, I tell him to 'just watch around us'. It took him a moment or two, then he figured out what was going on. I checked the motor height a number of times with a metal scale, then "tightened" everything back up and walked away from the boat. No kiddin, 2 boats near ours were being fiddled with and motor heights changed within minutes! Yup...I am on a fast train to hell!

 

Qualifying time!!!!

 

The skies had clouded up and we could hear thunder, but since this was a big event, the promoter had a timeline to adhere to. The first group of boats were launched and we took our hot lap before lining up on the starting dock. Sky is even darker now! I don't recall exactly where I lined up on the dock, but it was somewhere in the middle. All I knew was I had to make a heck of a start off the dock to keep from getting caught up in traffic. I do remember, though, that we could see some rain drops hitting the water already. Since there was no wind, race was still a go, though.

 

Flag dropped to start the race and I exploded off the dock and somehow managed to get past the commitment bouy, under the bridge and round the turn in first. Heading back up the front stretch, all I could see on the other side of the bridge was a grey mass....the darn rain had hit right as we started and it was a downpour! Come out from under the bridge running around 80 mph and you could not see worth a darn! But I was in first and no way was I backing down now! Only one problem....could not see 30 ft in front of the boat (yes...it was stupid in hind sight). Next thing I know, I see this big orange blob go flying past my port side.....CRAP!!! That was the turn bouy!!!!

 

By the time I got my wits back and the boat settled to turn, I managed to go from 1st to 5th in a matter of seconds. Of course, the rain lets up now enough for us to continue racing with semi-descent visibility. Still managed to qualify good enough for the finals, but did I catch heck from the crew chief (Dad) when I got back to the dock!

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One of the craziest finishes in a race for me was in Pittsburgh, PA in 1998. This was part of the APR Superleague series, so there were 16 boats in the race. I qualified semi-decent....somewhere around 4th on the start dock. Final race was 20 laps, and anybody familiar with the water behind the old Three Rivers Stadium know it is as much an endurance event.

 

Got off the dock and immediately picked up one spot. Settled into third, running behind two boats from Texas, Roddy Forman and Joe Quataro. Knowing I was in an older boat than the first two guys and was probably carrying an extra 35 pounds (plus I was running in front of my brother!), I was happy to just sit tight and see what happens. I really was not expecting too much, though, since Roddy and Joe were team mates and probably would not do anything to mess each other up, especially being at the front of the pack.

 

Half way through the race, it was rougher than 36 grit sandpaper! All the boat wakes were crossing the course at weird angles, making the turns real interesting. There would be swells in the turns and these played havoc on our tunnel boats. You would run into a turn, hit the down trim to tuck the motor just enough to set the front of the sponsons, turn the wheel to the left and get back on the up trim to keep the boat from "tripping" on the waves and spinning out. Hard enough doing it by yourself, but to have someone breathing down your neck adding pressure to the situation really makes it interesting.

 

With three laps left in the race, Joe decided it was time to pull up closer to Roddy. I suppose he thought he could take advantage of the rough water and possible force a mistake, then take over first place. Not what I expected, but racing causes team mates to do funny things sometimes.

 

Lap 18, Joe makes a move to the inside of Roddy as they go down the back stretch and I have a front row seat to the show. I suspect at this point Roddy was doing some serious mirror driving and it threw his timing off entering turn 3. At the entrance to the turn, just past the bouy, Roddy's boat all of a sudden hooks a sponson and turns hard towards the infield....right in front of Joe! Gotta give Joe credit, he cranked his wheel hard left and turned just in front of the bouy....missing the turn! I was far enough back to miss the escapade and all of a sudden went from third to first! HOT DAMN! As I exited turn 4, saw Roddy and Joe were still upright and moving, so no caution and restart! Crossed the start/finish line in first to take the white flag....one more lap to go and we are gonna win the big one!

 

Only one problem. One of the fastest boats this day had a terrible qualifying effort and started at the end of the dock. Paul had been working his way through traffic and was about 10 boat lengths behind me at the beginning of the last lap. Problem was, Paul had a new boat that was fast and weighed in right at 825 pounds. That 35 pounds of extra weight I was carrying was about to become an albatross!

 

Paul pulled up to one boat length behind me going into turn one. I still had the inside lane and made darn sure if he was going to pass me, it would be on the outside. We exited turn two heading down the backstretch, and I could see his boat in my right mirror, and he was trimming it up to squeeze as much speed out of it as possible for one last attack. I started tweaking the up trim on my boat and at the same time started to let the boat "drift" out some (hey...last lap, you do what you gotta do sometimes). By now he had pulled up even with me, and we had moved out about 3 or 4 lanes, so he was not sure what I was up to. I also saw his bow pop up just a little more, meaning he hit the up button again. At this point, I was debating to push mine a little higher up, too, but knew I was maxed out and that little bit would probably cause me to blow over backwards and probably pull Paul's boat over, too.

 

Probably 50 ft from the entrance to turn 3, Paul's bow was just a few feet in front of mine. We used the cockpit to cockpit rule to determine who had control of the turn. Whoever's cockpit was in front, regardless if they were on the inside lane or outside lane, was the controlling boat. Paul knew this; I knew it. He was already pushing me back to the left so I would possibly collide with the turn bouy. At this point, all I could do was lift for a second, let him take the inside line, and me fall behind him through the turn. It was a hard decision, knowing if I pushed for the turn, a good chance we would have some torn up boats.

 

Needless to say, I finished second that day and was mad as hell at myself trying to figure out what I could have done different. The frustrating thing was that there was nothing I could have done different. In one lap, went from third to first to second. What a day!

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MISS VITAMILK.jpg

 

My good friend Doug just finished restoring his dad's 1960's vintage race boat.

They found it only last fall, and with lot's of volunteer help he's racing this weekend.

 

Doug's dad was known as the worlds fastest milkman, and went on to drive the Miss Budweiser for Bernie Little.

He was tragically killed racing the Budweiser in Tampa, 1967

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Miss Vitamilk.jpg

 

Full view.

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Sweet! Looks like a small block chevy 350, :dribble: possibly an alcohol burner. :yahoo_think:

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Miss Vitamilk rebuild 7.jpg

Fuel injected.

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Here's how the rebuild started.

Miss Vitamilk rebuild.jpg

And continued.

Miss Vitamilk rebuild 2.jpg

Miss Vitamilk rebuild 3.jpg

Miss Vitamilk rebuild 4.jpg

Miss Vitamilk rebuild 6.jpg

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Fantastic!!

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Doug has boat racing in his blood.

Doug Brow 2002.jpg

Driving in the unlimited class in 2002.

He won the Unlimited Hydroplane National Championship the next year.

Doug Brow Race Official Detroit corse.jpg

He's the official up in the Helicopter calling lane violations now.

( Not always popular with the drivers )

Dougs View @ Detroit.jpg

His view from the Chopper.

Dougs View at Detroit.jpg

Same sponsor as his Championship year.

 

I'm excited to see him Vintage race his dads boat soon.

Bill Brow  Miss Vitmilk.jpg

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Beautiful! Staudacher or Lauterbach hull? Henry Lauterbach was a good friend of dad's and I remember back in the 70's and 80's seeing many an Unlimited at Henry's shop (this was when they ran the Allison piston engines). Henry built some of the fastest conventional hulls (where the driver sat behind the motor). His son Larry (a heck of a driver himself) could not convince his dad to make the change over to the cabover design (driver in front of the motor), so Larry built one himself.

 

The craftsmanship in Henry's boats was unbelievable. He was from the age of natural wood decks and would finish the boat with a layer of 4 oz cloth over the deck; then wet sand and varnish. When he was done, you did not see any indication of that cloth in the finish, just beautiful mahogany grain. Honestly, it looked like a piece of furniture!

 

I remember one race in the mid 80's at Littleton, NH. The one class below Unlimited is the Grand Prix. Only rule is it has to be an eight cylinder motor, but any mods you wanted. These guys would show up with Keith Black supercharged motors (yes - motors...one in the boat and a spare in the trailer!), twin turbo-charged punched out Chevies, and nitrous allowed, too. You could tell when they hit the bottle coming out of the turn as the roostertail would just about double in size! Anyway, enough Grand Prixs were there that they had to run elimination heats. All were cabover designs except for one conventional hull, a Lauterbach named Golden Princess.

 

The balance on Golden Princess was perfect that one weekend, and that boat took all of those more modern designed hulls to task an layed as azz whuppin on them. We were pitted on the back stretch, and in the finals had the perfect spot to see the start. Eight boats made the final and all hit the start line (running start on a 1 2/3 mile course) wide open. Golden Princess picked the outside lane, which is normally not the place to be as you have to cover more ground running on the outside. Five boats rounded the first turn side by side, the Princess still on the outside. As they were rounding the exit pin for turn 2, you could see that boat go to the nitrous bottle, and it literally jumped out of the water and took off down that long backstretch and pulled a few boat lengths on the rest of the pack. It was enough that she could ease back to the inside and cross in front of the other boats so they were in the coveted inside lane at the entrance to turn 3. After that, it was just stay out of trouble and maintain the lead! Watching that boat run was the most amazing race I recall seeing both from a technical point and just the beauty of running in that lake with the White Mountains in the background.

 

Paul...I do not recall what class the letter H was for. Do you know what it was and the motor size? Another thing I noticed about that boat...those are dry sponsons. For whatever reason, most boats of thay style had the back of the sponsons open and water could flow easily inside the sponson when sitting at rest. Very few were built with the back of the sponson closed like that.

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