Monday, October 5, 2015

HYDROS: 2015 Season Finale at San Diego sees Oberto go out in Blaze 'O Glory

The late Bill Muncey matches his age with his 49th career victory at the Squire Seafair Trophy race on Lake Washington in August, 1978 aboard his dominant Atlas Van Lines "Blue Blaster." (Image source:
As typical here in Nofendersville, Hey! Y'all try being a "One Armed Paper-hanger;" Err One-man motor racing reporter of everythingy' in Der Vurld de Motorsporten, Ja-Ja, and see what's Yuhs miss! Especially when Yuhs take off for the Mountain, as in Her Majesty Tahoma.

As somehow I've missed thee Memo regarding the Bayfair race's association with the late, great Bill Muncey - since this race routinely goes unnoticed by Mwah due to its lack 'O live media coverage...

Whilst another irony revolving around the late "Mr. Unlimited" centered upon my commemorating the 30th Anniversary of Bill Muncey's passing. As I'd already put to bed my expose on said Anniversary and having flown off to Arizona for a much needed Sabbatical.

Sadly we'd witness the depth of Dannyboy 'Spike Wheldon at that weekend's Las Vegas "World Championship!" For which I was ill prepared for with the following article being my lead story instead.

As Messer Wheldon, who I never personally met, although did get to see him once Up Close 'N Personal in full celebratory mode while strutting his stuff on the Red Carpet at the J. W. Marriott the night after his second and final Indy 500 victory. Yet, as we all know, Wheldon later that year unfortunately suffered his own version of horror  on October 16, 2011.

Twistidly, once again, this story was started prior to our latest Open Wheel Racing driver's death. That being Justin B-I-G' UNIT Wilson's on August 24, 2015 - as ironically both were from Great Britain and had raced against each other beginning in their formative Karting days...

Thus, with the morbid part of this tale out of thy way, although hopefully we'll never forget this trio of many Championship calibre drivers to perish while doing what they loved doing! As Muncey was instrumental in the development of Bayfair, which hosted its first B-I-G' BOATZ race in 1964...

Otay, so I'm ultra Cornfuzed, since as typical, there's very little accurate information regarding what the current race is called on Zed Internets... Since the only article 'O sustenance is the current sanctioning body H1 Unlimited article on the new Bill Muncey Trophy unveiled in 2012; Huh?

As reportedly, previous winners over the years have been awarded the Bill Muncey trophy upon winning at San Diego Bayfair, yet beginning in 2012 H1 Unlimited commissioned a new Bill Muncey trophy to be awarded at the ceremonies banquet to the season's High Points champion instead, a la the Martini trophy awarded to the championship winning team.

Recent Winners
2009) No Unlimited Race
2010) Dave Villwock; U-96 Spirit of Qatar
2011) Dave Villwock; U-96 Spirit of Qatar
2012) Steve David; U-6 Oh Boy Oberto
2013) Jimmy Shane; U-5 Graham Trucking
2014) J. Michael Kelly; U-1 Graham Trucking

BAYFAIR - 2015
Won't try regalin' Y'all with Blow-by-Blow repetition, albeit suffice I-T to say, Jimmy Shane capped the Swan Song farewell of the legendary Oberto Beef Jerky sponsorship of Unlimited Hydroplane racing in resplendent fashion, beginning with being the fastest qualifier along with winning the day's first preliminary heat.

As the path to Shane's third consecutive National High Points Championship was somewhat eased by the lack of one of his fiercest competitors, Jean Theoret and the U-96 Ellstrom Elam Plus which didn't make the show due to being unable to repair their Hull's severe damage at the previous  race in Detroit.

Meanwhile, Kelly Stocklin, driver of the U-18 Bucket List Racing Hull suffered a flip during Friday's testing after hitting a wave, having since been released from hospital, although revealing he'll be wearing a back brace for awhile! And thus the twelve boat field was paired down to just nine boats for the Bayfair weekend.

Cal Phips in the U-27 Dalton Industries Hydro won Heat 1A whilst Shane in the U-1 Oh Boy Oberto took victory over his only real competition in Heat 1B, his arch nemesis J. Michael Kelly and the U-5 Graham Trucking.

And in another chapter of how NO matter us 'Ol Salts' a la Oil Pressure's Geo. Phillips and myself despise change. Change is inevitable... As I try to remember the most salient quote I've ever heard regarding change - from one of the featured participants in the most Excellante Documentary film Walking The Camino, Six Ways to Santiago, for which I'm probably badly paraphrasing, Eh!

"It'll  never be the same like it is right now..."

Alas, after a glorious span of four decades, Oberto Beef Jerky will no longer sponsor an Unlimited Hydroplane; CRAP! As this action seems akin to Anheiser Busch pulling its storied sponsorship of Bernie Little's A-L-L conquering Miss Budweiser, or Bill Muncey's fabled Atlas Van Lines departure from the sport!

Thus, Jimmy Shane, a Covington, WA resident sent the Snausages' boat off in the most befitting way with a clean sweep of the weekend. Winning all four heats entered, including the final upon having already been crowned the 2015 National High Points Champion!

Now the hard part  will be to keep the Miss Madison operation intact, as hopefully a new sponsor will be quickly sorted in order for the team's seamless transition into 2016...