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THEY’RE AT THE STARTING LINE: POWER BOAT RACINGfrom: If you want excitement and own a fast power boat, consider taking up power boat racing. There are a variety of venues, circuits, classes and levels to take part in – ones that can suit even the most jaded, die-hard racing car admirer’s taste. In fact, power boat racing is similar to the race car circuit in many ways. There is off shore power boat racing, time trials, regattas, classics and annual runs across Canada, the United States and parts of the United Kingdom and Eurasia.
Essentially there are two basic types of power boat racing. These, based on the type or location of the engine, are outboard and inboard. These two classes race separately and compete in different events.
The two types of power boat racing are governed by associations. The American Power Boat Association (APBA), organized in 1913, provides leadership for inboard power boats, but is affiliated with outboard motor groups and clubs. They organize the racing into set classes including Crackerbox or “flyers” - the oldest inboard “runabout” class, Jersey Speed Skiff – the original rum running boats, National Modified, Pro Stock Runabouts and Super Stock. Depending on the class, power boats can reach speeds of greater than 170 Mph.
The APBA schedules power boat racing events from March until November, some with such tantalizing names as “Thunder on the Niagara,” a racing event held in Tonawanda, New York State or “Annual Run for Records” taking place in Yelm, Washington State. It holds more than 200 sanctioned regattas annually in Canada and the United States. In Canada, it’s helped out by the Canadian Boating Federation (CBF). All in all, the APBA has 6,000 members and is growing. There are affiliates or loose organizations in Australia and New Zealand. Dividing the country into various regions has facilitated maintain control and standards. Even the Seattle Outboard Association (SOA), which specializes in such outboard classes as Stock Outboard, Modified Outboard, Professional Racing Outboard and Electric Outboard, has affiliated with the APBA.
The taste for power boat racing has grown over the years, expanding into various circuit and team sponsored events. There are agencies or associations like the SOA, the CBF, the Australian Power Boat Association, the Jersey Speed Skiffs, the Super Stock Association and the APBA who direct them, organize events at all levels, categorize or create classes and arrange it all to present the most exciting heart-pounding, visually explosive package for spectator and racer alike. Working within this framework and for the good of the sport of power boat racing are local clubs, teams, associations and, naturally, the fans whether they be in the United States, Canada, or around the world.
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