Although Strong Racing will give them a Hard fight this season!
This year, your Humble No Fenders Scribe Tomaso’s very late to the party, with Half of the 2023 season over! And hence, I’m just attempting to give a brief overview of the nine H1 Unlimited Drivers competing this year, along with their respective teams. For which Y’all can compare ‘N contrast wit last year’s No Fenders Season preview below.
As the Miss Madison Racing organization has been the team to beat for eternity now! Having read they’ve won 11 of the last 14 National High Points championships, aye Karumba!
Miss Madison Racing
U-1 Miss HomeStreet Bank, (R) Dylan Runn
U-91 Miss goodman Real Estate, Andrew Tate
Obviously the biggest news for the Miss Madison organization is that Jimmy Shane retired at the end of the 2022 season. With Shane leaving a massive hole due to His seven National High Points Drivers Championships and five Gold Cup wins. Along with a stout 25 overall victories!
As Shane’s seven Driver’s titles ties Him for second overall in the sport with the legendous’ “Mr. Unlimited”, aka Bill Muncey. Behind only Dave Villwock’s impressive ten Driver’s titles.
While as I scribbled Here upon No Fenders last year, His 25 victories tie Him for fourth overall with the late Dean Chenoweth. Surpassed only by the Sport’s pantheon of Greats, i.e.; Villwock’s 67 wins, Muncey’s 62 and Chip Hanauer’s 61!
According to H1 Unlimited’s official website, Runn becomes the 24th Miss Madison Racing driver, and is a multi-times Hydroplane Champion both in American and Canadian waters.
As Runn is a third generation Boat racer from New York with over 20yrs racing experience, and was the 2017 Hydroplane Racing League (HRL) Rookie Of the Year. Along with being the first in HRL history to win three consecutive Championships in three different classes!
Dylan took the team’s sister U-91 Unlimited out during the Sunday morning test period during last year’s San Diego Bayfair regatta and ran consistent laps at 138mph-plus, with a fastest lap of 156mph and change. (156.857mph)
Runn won His first preliminary Heat appropriately in Madison, Indiana, when beating Dustin Echols in Heat 3, before the finals were cancelled. And it won’t be a surprise if Dylan finds enough confidence in one of the best Hulls to fight for victory in the final two events.
Andrew Tate returns to the cockpit of an big Boyz’ Unlimited Hydroplane after a year’s hiatus, replacing Jeff Bernard in the U-91. As Andrew became my favourite Unlimited Skipper when previously driving the Jones Racing U-9 Les Schwab Hydroplane. Which He piloted to the 2018 National High Points Championship along with winning that year’s Gold cup event, appropriately in His Home state at Detroit. Joining His father Mark, whose won the Gold Cup twice and is a Michigan Hall of Fame inductee.
Tate had a Deck-to-Deck duel with Cory Peabody in the U-9 Beacon Plumbing in Heat 2 before Peabody finished ahead of Him. With Tate winning over Peabody’s teammate J. Michael Kelly in their next preliminary Heat before the day’s final at Guntersville Southern Cup.
Don’t know what exactly happened, other than I think I heard that Tate got “Washed Down” or ran into someone else’s Roostertail before Flipping at the start of the Southern cup’s Final! With Tate landing upside down during His Blowover!
And although Tate was checked and released from the Medical Center, the U-91Miss Goodman Real Estate, which was credited with finishing second in the Final on accumulated points. Was damaged enough that the team was forced to skip the next event, the team’s Home race at Madison, Indiana, on the Ohio River!
Although I’ll expect Miss Goodman Real Estate to be ready to race in both upcoming Washington events. Especially since I believe Seattle’s it’s Home event, where Tate should be a “Strong” Contendah’ for the Gold Cup victory…
U-3 Griggs presents Miss Ace Hardware, Jimmy King
This is the only remaining Piston powered Hull in the Unlimited fleet still competing. With the ‘Ol U-3 sporting a twin turbocharged V-12 Allison. Arse-sumedly with one turbo per bank of six cylinders behind the cockpit vs. the traditional front engine piston layout of the 1950’s thru Mid-1980’s.
And with Dave villwock’s retirement again last year, at Age 62, King becomes the Sport’s Oldest Skipper in the fleet. As King’s been driving this boat since 2005, has contested some 84 races with 30 Heat wins. And was the 1994 Unlimited Hydroplane rookie Of the Year.
Thus, with such familiarity behind the Keyboard of the U-3 Griggs present Miss Ace Hardware Hull. Led to Him apparently winning His preliminary Sunday Heat vs. Jamie Milsen in the U-11 Legend Yacht Transport at Guntersville. Before being Disqualified for failing to run the minimum 80mph “Planing” speed during the five minutes Milling period, with Milsen being declared the winner.
Whilst I’ve got Zero idea if King was involved with Tate’s Blowover during the Southern cup Finale or not? Since King and the U-3 didn’t compete at Madison.
And I’ve got no idea if they’ll make the trip to Warshington’ or not? Since I Don’t do the Facebook thing and apparently it’s a State Secret where the team’s located? Although I believe Thar on the East Coast somewhere?
Whilst I won’t expect it to happen. The U-3 could be a “Sleeper” pick at the Gold Cup this year due to Seattle’s notorious “rollers” bouncing off of the Log Boom…
As C’mon H1 Unlimited, you can at least provide where each team’s located in your Team profiles! Whilst if I can Gory afford a yearly website domain, then GO3 Racing can do so, and have a team website for Fans to peruse!
(R) Denotes Rookie Driver