novel idea. Hold a fast electric boat race and invite the public. Specially
young people. The Florida High Voltage F/E Club (formerly the Central Florida
High Voltage Club) did just that. Joining with a large Miami suburban community
home owners, association, and local private business, the club began its 2000 racing season.
highlight was that this was the very first time a Fast Electric Boat Race
(sanctioned) was held in the Miami (Florida) area. There was no established F/E
boat club in the area. The closest club to the race site is in Central Florida,
over 250 miles away.
April 9th, 2000 was race day. A cold front with high winds arrived the evening
before and threatened to dampen racing and spirits. No problem! The show went
on. The race site was located in the beautiful residential community of The
Hammocks. This is a suburb of Miami with over 10,000 residences, 5 lakes and 20
beaches. The race site chosen was a protected cove at the south end of a large
Hammocks Community Association and their activities director Suzie Garrahan
provided ideal surroundings for an F/E event. The gracious hospitality of The
Hammocks provided the club with local promotion, 24 hour security, lake side
parking, use of facilities the local police explorer’s club and a very nice
newspaper article. The explorer’s teamed with the homeowner’s association to
cook food and sell refreshments. Much to the delight of hungry racer’s and
public. Their efforts were much appreciated.
how do you get the public involved in an F/E Boat race? How about a day at the
beach featuring entertainment, food and beverage plus a kids race. And.... the
people came out.
kids race was sponsored by Ray Fuller and Fuller’s
Fast Electric’s. A big and Special thanks to Ray Fuller for his generosity
and consideration for this event. Ray donated to the club a fleet of boats,
motors, batteries and HiTec radio gear. Fuller’s sells top of the line
hardware, motors and equipment and a variety of racing class boats. Check out
his website. Who knows? You might just find the boat of your dreams, there.
over 50 youngster’s wanting to be a race driver, race director Donnie Wollard
held a raffle and narrowed the field down to a manageable eight. The Kids race
was a hoot to watch and a lot of excitement for the young people.
to the racing.
- Racing began with 6 cell stock classes. N-1 Mono (any mono hull with an
05 stock motor) was first to race. Always a popular and affordable class which
always draws many entrants. A driver can be competitive with a $25 scratch built
boat or a state of the art carbon fiber wonder. Basic skills and luck are more
important in this class than how much you spend for your boat.
small boats and fast for there size, this class does not do well on choppy water
or in windy conditions. Don (dad) Wollard raced his newly acquired Raptor. An
English boat modeled after the Eco Class of race boats, distributed by ASTEC.
If you have not tried one of these boats, you must. Very stable and able to run
in any water conditions the hull is self-righting. To every one’s amazement,
the boat is actually competitive in N-1 Mono and will run for about 5 minutes.
The boat finished first by a mile in the choppy water of heat one. Took third
out of six boats in heat two (ran first place all the way but the driver cut two
buoys and was penalized, Opps!). And in heat three finished 4th after a poor
start. Trey Adams took top honors for the day driving his Maus Micro Bullet
powered by the new Trinity P2K stock motor.
cell modified motor) and P Mono (12 cell modified motor) also battled at the
event. N-2 Mono is fast and lots of fun to watch. These hulls are approximately
22 inches long and sport 05 can motors as well as a variety of exotic power.
Trey Adams raced the Boat/Motor combination which Dick Crowe used to win the N-2
class at the Nationals. Its a Maus Micro Bullet with Lehner power set-up by Ray
Fuller. A very fast combination.
was Trey’s first NAMBA race and he drove like an experienced champ. Trey
traveled to the race from Louisiana along with racing pal’s David Roark and
in for the final heat was Ed Houghton. Ed is from England and was on vacation in
Florida. Being a true F/E enthusiast, Ed brought along a 7 cell stepped mono and
joined in for a little fun. It was very refreshing
to see Ed’s boat race against very competitively set-up American boats.
Ed uses a Trinity 05 motor to power his boat and demonstrated the boat would run
for over 5 minutes at its extreme speed.
took first place in his heat when then entire 6 boat fleet stalled, spun-out or
flipped. Ed’s boat is a German design which is self righting. An impressive
boat which could be ideal for the new (NAMBA) O-Offshore enduro class. Donnie
said later, “I have just got to get one of these”.
NAMBA! Why was it [again] we don’t allow Stepped Bottomed Mono’s in our oval
classes? Hummm!!!!!! We have got to re-think this...soon.
cells and modified motor) was the first hydro class to race. This is an
affordable and surprisingly fast class to race. These boats typically are around
22 inches long and relatively light for the power they sport. In heat One, Rum
Runner team driver Brian Vega managed his first 2000 heat win by keeping his
boat right side up in the choppy water. Quite a feat, Brian! In heat 2 Brian met the opposite shore line at full speed, bounced off and still won the heat.
In the final heat Brian lost his lead when his ESC over heated and the win was
grabbed by Trey Adams. Scott Harris had a consistent second place finish in all
three heats which gave him the big ‘wood’ for the class.
with any modified motor - hydro type hull) was the fastest action of the day.
Top Guns like Chris Harris, Brian Vega and Rob Michael’s lead the charge for
the beautiful trophies. O-Hydro’s boats are slightly larger than N-2’s.
Lately, driver’s racing this class seem to favor exotic motors and set there
boats up to perform on the edge. 05 can type motors and gear drives powered by
05 motors still remain top contender’s in class, though not as popular.
Michaels is the owner of Superior Hobbies and an International R/C Car
Champion. Rob took the helm of Don Wollard’s personal boat. An Aveox powered
Rum Runner rigger. The boat is brand new and designed to handle choppy water at
Wollard pitted for Rob Michaels in O and P Hydro while Rob drove Don’s boats.
first heat, the water was very choppy and it was a feat for anyone to complete
the race. At less than top speed, Rob promptly broke the standing NAMBA record
by 3 seconds. In heat two, Rob hooked a sponson, spun-out and Chris Harris
driving a hot Hammer head rigger flew by to take the win. Chris was so fast that
he broke Rob’s new record by 1 second raising the bar at this ‘speed
fest’. In heat 3, the wind had dropped down to around 10 m.p.h. 4 boats headed
for the start line neck and neck. Rob hit the juice and never looked back. He
broke the old record by 8 seconds with a new 5 lap mark of 65.91 seconds.
his way through the ranks was Scott Harris who raced a 5 years old BBY rigger.
Driving skills and consistent finishes earned him a respectful second place.
(12 cells, any modified motor- Single hull Mono) was all Chris Harris and his
newly re-designed Bandit Pistolero. This class generally features state of the
art equipment. The boat hulls are 24 inches or longer and generally powered by
newly redesigned Pistolero could easily be a top contender this year. This hull
appears stable in both choppy and calm water with little change to its set-up.
Brian Vega was close in second with his Maus Bullet followed by Scott Harris and
his Black Diamond hull.
(12 cells, any modified motor - any Hydro hull). This hydro class and above
generally features custom built boats, specialized running hardware and exotic
motors. Definitely not an entry level class. Lots of fun to watch.
Straight-a-way speeds for this class can exceed 60 MPH.
water surface and high speed model boats typically don’t mix. They did not for
this class either. Heat one was all Rob Michaels. Rob was at the helm of Don
Wollard’s P-rigger which is powered by a new e-series Aveox 1412/1.5 motor
set-up by Jim Caldwell at Rogel Marine. In heat two, Rob spun twice which
gave Brian Vega the win driving his Plettenberg powered Hammer Head rigger. Rob
held on and grabbed respectable second place in spite of some bad luck. Heat three
was a surprise. Rob’s batteries had false peaked and he lasted all of 1/2 lap.
Brian Vega and Chris Harris both suffered spin-outs which opened the way for
Scott Harris and his 5 year old Maus rigger to cruise along for the win.
P Offshore class which was raced for the first time at the 1999
NAMBA Nationals is now a 4 minute enduro event for 2000 racing season. The
boats must all be semi-scale in appearance and be at least 30 inches long,
overall. The winner of each heat is the boat with the highest lap count. The
racing was great and the enduro challenge really made the difference for the
watching crowd. They loved this event and cheered on there favorite boat. Chris
Harris’ and his custom built Hammer Head Catt took top honor’s with a total
of 20 laps. Race director Donnie Wollard was restricted to only one heat
all day and elected to enter the final heat of Offshore. His much improved Rum
Runner Catt took second place with a broken steering arm. Good job!
raffle at a boat race is always exciting and important. Its raises the funds
needed by a club to pay for the cost of holding events, equipment, tents and so
forth. The club would like to recognized HiTec and Orange
for there generous donations. Other raffle sponsor’s included Southern Wine
and Spirits and Rum Runner Racing.
ask that you patronize these generous folks with your future business.
club owes a special ‘thank you’ to race director Donnie Wollard. Donnie
planned this event from stem to stern. Located the site, coordinated with The
Hammocks Community Association and took care of all the other hundred little
details involved with a successful race. The huge success of this event was
because of his efforts. The club is already planning for next year’s race in
received the benefit and assistance of having Miss Lori Meadows at the race. Her
help at any club event is priceless and we appreciate her very much. She is
tracked the race classes and each heat on a lap top computer. This was marvelous
and certainly simplified managing a busy event. Results were instant. Hey
Donnie! How did you keep the sand out of your laptop?
it must be mentioned the efforts of club member Dan Chong who did a marvel job
raising the money for the event trophies, T-Shirts and raffle prizes. Dan
recruited Southern Wine and Spirits as a primary sponsor. We all appreciate you,
Dan. The trophies were paramount to a National Championship race prize. Race
T-Shirts sported a cute graphic developed by Pop Wollard (Don Wollard, Sr.).
They became the event memento.
Harris (NAMBA district director) and club Prez Tony Colarusso are a pair of
‘get it done’ guys. No matter what, they are always there to see the show
goes on. Thank you gentlemen for your time developing this club.
do you think of our new club retrieve boat? Fits in the bed on Donnie’s
pick-up truck and ready on a moments notice.
finally, I also want to mention my delight to see so many young families
involved in FE boat racing. Chris and Lori Harris brought along both of their
young son’s. The newest family member is only two months old. Our youngest
active club racer is 15 year old Daniel Wollard.
Florida High Voltage Club has dedicated the 2000 season to membership drives and
fund raiser’s. Getting and keeping entire families involved is the future of
this hobby, and our [collective] goal. Affordable, challenging and fun is
also what it will take to keep our great hobby alive.
about the Future for the new Florida R/C boat club? The club has launched a plan
to have semi-annual Straight Away trials to supplement the club’s active
racing schedule. The first SAW event is scheduled for this fall.
Racing. Stay Tuned.
Rum Runner along with members of the F.H.V. Club will be in Seattle for the Spring
Splash, June 10-11, 2000. Another NAMBA family oriented race. In the event you
have not registered for the race or paid your entry fee’s, you must do so
soon. See you there. SPRING
RESULTS AND PICTURES
This article was written exclusively for Rum Runner Racing
by Don Wollard. Use of this article is Strictly Prohibited without written
permission from Rum Runner Racing and DL3 Web Designs.