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No trip to Rouen this year . . .
2015-01-27
No trip to Rouen this year . . .

TUESDAY, January 27, 2015 - We have decided not to participate in the 24 Hours of Rouen in 2015.  The reason?  There are simply too many races for us to participate in during the upcoming year.  The trip to Rouen isn't cheap and when you couple it with a testing date in Dayton, OH in mid May and a season opener in F1 in late May it just adds up to too many days away from the office and not enouh sponsorship to do it all that early in the season.  The Rouen trip takes a full week even when you try to rush it.  Our French connection, Shark Racing, is also considering passing on Rouen this year to prepare for the French National Championship later in the summer.  There is a chance we might get Romain Nedelec, the owner of Shark Racing, to the U.S. later in 2015 and into an F3 or F2 boat at Huntington.

Speaking of Huntington, the Huntington Classic Regatta was awarded the North American Championship designation by the APBA during it's annnual meeting last week.  Regardless of my bias on the situation, I think it was a good choice.  Huntington is a great race site, has had a solid boat count for the past three years and offers the opportunity for participants to be on two television networks in front of 15 million households.  Not to mention the regatta portion of the event has grown tremendously the past few years and will again feature great activities and music in 2015.

You can follow updates at www.huntingtonclassic.com.  We just started sending updates to the webmaster this week so within a week or two you should begin to see some announcements about things that are planned for Huntington this year.

Snow and cold have moved in to stay for a while so not much is happening in the shop the past week or so.  The toterhome has been serviced and is back at the shop, and the F1 hull is still being worked on so not much to report in those areas.  Motivation when the the highs are in the 20s is sometimes a little hard to find so I'll choose to spend the rest of this week doing the office portion of the pre-season plan.

Dana Tomes


Annual meeting this week . . .
2015-01-20
Annual meeting this week . . .

TUESDAY, January 20, 2015 - This week is the official beginning of the 2015 race season.  No, there isn't any racing going on that I am aware of, but the movers and shakers of the sport of powerboat racing will gather in Detroit for the annual meeting of the American Power Boat Association.  This meeting will consist of the updating of rules, the gathering of committees, the awarding of race dates, and the assignment of race titles to race sites and promoters who appear to plead their case before the governing body.

The four-day convention sets the tone for the coming year and gives all racers a better understanding of what rules have changed, what policies have been altered, what race promoters are granted what races, and what titles those races will carry.  It's interesting to watch the jockeying from afar and see how politics trickles down to even the sport of powerboat racing.

Speaking of racing, some boats will be getting wet much earlier this year as the APR Superleague has it's opener scheduled in just three weeks in Bradenton, FL.  SST-120s and SST-200s will join forces in Florida for a single day of racing.  Details are available on APR's website at www.aprsuperleague.com.  Good luck to all of those racers who are planning to hit the water early this year.  Personally, I can't imagine wanting to get back into the racing grind this early, but I know several who can't wait to hit the water again and will surely be represented in Bradenton.  There is a nice promotional video of the planned event online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Embnyi6iFLw.  Hopefully, a great field of race boats and a great crowd will welcome in the year's first event.

As for our racing, our F1 boat is nearing completion of being rigged.  Everything is together and almost ready for some engine tuning on the boat ramp.  A new EFI high pressure fuel pump is on order and will hopefully be the last piece of the puzzle to getting our boat backed into a local body of water in the next week or two.

Our new Freightliner toterhome will be back in the shop tomorrow.  It has been out for some updates the past month or so getting some wiring updated, oil change, exhaust system and some other things.  Next up is beginning the modications inside to get our UTV in there, along with our fuel, engines and other items we plan to haul along with us next summer.

Speaking of summer, USF1 Powerboat released it's 2015 race schedule yesterday that will feature five races spanning from late May to late August.  If all goes well Herd Racing hopes to compete in each of the five races as well as a couple races with Powerboat Nationals in SST-120.  Our complete planned schedule for 2015 is posted on our website at http://www.herdracing.com/schedule.php.

Dana Tomes


Race schedule coming soon . . .
2015-01-11
Race schedule coming soon . . .

SUNDAY, January 11, 2015 - We hope that by the time we post a blog update next week we will have our 2015 race schedule set.  Only a couple things remain.  We are considering whether to race the 24 Hours of Rouen again in 2015 and waiting to see what the USF1 final schedule for 2015 looks like.  What race or races are added in to the final USF1 slate will go a long way in helping us to decide if we go to Rouen this year or not.

USF1's 2015 schedule is set to be released in about a week, according to the league.  Four race dates have been confirmed, but being that the league has not said that the race schedule is final leads one to think that another race or two may be added.

Rumors have it that the new producers of the Pittsburgh regatta are talking with one or more race promoters but no one has that race posted to their 2015 schedule.  Another possible site is Detroit where the H1 hydros were cut from the annual festival there earlier this year and local news outlets have claimed that tunnel boats will replace the hydros.  Again, no racing promoter has claimed this race site on their schedule either.  Laughlin, NV, which was rumored to be a possibility for USF1 has postponed any race plans until 2016, according to news reports there, so that leads one to wonder if USF1 is waiting on Detroit and/or Pittsburgh to made a commitment.

We'll see in about a week and make our final announced plans soon after.  A list of six prelimarily scheduled races that our team plans to participate in are already up on our website's Schedule page if you want to check them out.

Dana Tomes


Happy 2015 . . .
2015-01-05
Happy 2015 . . .

MONDAY, January 05, 2015 - It's been about two weeks since our last blog post due to the holidays and vacation time.  Things are in the slow time of the year when it comes to boat racing, but a few race dates have began to surface for 2015.  Most of the rest are expected later this month ahead of the APBA's national meetings.

Among those announcements has been APR Superleague's 2015 schedule which includes two trips to sunny Florida to race.  That is a good move since many of the league's regular teams are based in the southern U.S. and many in Florida itself.  In addition to two dates in Florida, the league will also race in New Martinsville, WV, Marietta, OH and Knoxville, TN.

It is rumored that the USF1 Powerboat Tour will announce it's 2015 official schedule prior to the APBA's annual convention in Detroit later this month where title designations will be added to race dates.

One notable absence on the 2015 schedules is the longtime July 4 Pittsburgh race.  The local regatta committee there has changed promotors for the annual festival this year and it has been rumored that boat racing, which was cut to just one day last year, has been passed over for other family-friendly events.  The race didn't appear on the APR schedule as it usually does and other racing leagues and clubs are saying they have no interest in conducting an event in the steel city.  I guess we'll see in the coming weeks if the site shows up on anyone's race slate for 2015 or if Pittsburgh will become another city to fall by the wayside when it comes to tunnel boat racing.

The Huntington Classic Regatta committee will meet next week to begin working more furvently on plans for the 2015 events at Harris Riverfront Park.  A proposal from Powerboat Nationals is under consideration and should pass the group's scrutiny when we meet.  I am not aware of any other racing promotors submitting proposals for consideration this year, after 3-4 were received the past two years.  Race dates in Huntington will be the final weekend in July as it has been the past few years and will feature SST-120 and SST-60 fields just as it showcased in 2014. Updates at Harris Park continue as a new skateboard park within the riverfront park opened to the public this past weekend.  More improvements are continuing to make the park a little bit nicer each year.

All of our boat engines are back in house and re-doing the interior of our new toterhome is next on our list of things to accomplish.  Hoping to get a few warm days to start on that project in the next few weeks.  We continue rigging boats, working on shop foundation expansions and other things, as time permits, in preparation for 2015 race slate!

Dana Tomes


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