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Old 11-09-2009, 09:05 AM
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I think that the product is DEFINITELY cool enough, ......
No.....it isn't. It's redundant, confusing, uncompetitive, and has very few identifiable stars or personalities. It is no longer even a shadow of its former self....... it is basically an excuse for a bunch of guys to party together...and while I can understand that anyone can spend his money anyway he chooses....that doesn't mean anybody else wants to watch it.

The point about "Offshore" racing is correct. If you are going to call it offshore...then by God race offshore. If you want circle racing you are much better off tuning in to Formula One tunnel boats or Unlimited Hydroplanes which were designed for the closed course format, have better, more skilled and talented drivers , and understand that an extra guy (Throttleman) making split second decisions in a tight turn is a definite disadvantage. The whole throttleman concept was created to allow the driver to navigate and keep both hands on the wheel while a second guy could concentrate solely on reading the waves and coordinating the engine/drivetrain to the frequent airborne conditions in big seas....... in calm water the throttleman is little more than an albatross..... unless the driver is not experienced enough to handle the boat at speed ( a common occurence). The other problem with a throttleman is it creates a second guy to rescue, get injured or bury when the worst case scenarios happen.....and, sadly, they do.

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Old 11-09-2009, 09:15 AM
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It's coming, soon.

Let's cross our fingers Key West 2009 comes off safe and sound...

Then you'll get your answer, soon enough!


Coach
Whatever you or anyone else has on the "drawing board", remember 3 things.

1. In racing less is more........ get rid of the idiotic, self serving, complex, splinter groups, and classes.

2. JC has lost his APBA license (yet another in a decades long string of broken promises by OPT-SBR-SBI). If ever there was a time to unify under the APBA/UIM banner (Which I have always advocated)....now is the time.

3. Don't build on today's tired paradigm.....Build on something that requires, skill, develops personalities, forces the racers to compete with each other...and ignores the wannabes, and wallet racers (who are frequently the same guys).

Oh...and one more thing.....if it ain't televised....it's going nowhere.

T2x

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Old 11-09-2009, 10:20 AM
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AMEN ! - X 2 Richie - -
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Old 11-09-2009, 10:54 AM
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It will succeed when they do this.
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Old 11-09-2009, 11:12 AM
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To get big time corporate sponsors for Offshore Powerboat Racing, you have to have an avenue for them to sell their products to a large fan base but a large viewing audience is what is really needed and TV is that avenue. Many people don't even know what Offshore Powerboat Racing is, in Canada there are no Offshore Powerboat Races, so how would anyone know what it is all about. How do you teach people about Offshore Powerboat Racing, you have to televise it, so people can see a new and exciting sport to them on TV. Only then can you move forward from that point. Lets take a look at Super Bowl and what big time sponsors pay for some air time commercials. Why is this, because the Super Bowl is televised and watch in every home and the sponsors can sell their product to a massive audience. You mention that "Old School" racers don't have any interest in the shorter 2 1/2 mile course like at the Gold Cup Race. I think that is wrong, Offshore Powerboat Racing fans don't want the longer 10-15 mile race courses, fans only see occasional race action but with the shorter race course of 4-5 miles, you get to see the, whole race and continuous race action. Long course are boring and do nothing for the race fan. At the Gold Cup Races, the Offshore's put on a great show for the fans on a short course where everyone could see the entire race and they raced real close to the race fans, which was super cool and loud, that's why I buy tickets every year for that event. The St. Clair River Offshore Classic is run on a 4 mile course and a 7 mile course, although I would like to see the 7 mile course shortened to make this already great race even better, it is still the best for the fans and racers. That is what the race fans want, short courses that spectators can see the whole race and be treated to continuous race action, they don't want the long course but shorter courses, that is the future. On OSO I have read post where people are asking where is the best place to view the races at Key West, they all want to get as close as possible to the race boats and see the great racing on a short course. TV plays a major role in any sport to acquaint viewers with the sport and to help sponsors sell their products to the viewers. Not many knew what the Red Bull Air Racers where all about in Windsor and Detroit, until in 2008 when Detroit brought in the Red Bull Air Races on the Detroit River, which drew around 350,000 spectators to the water front and was televised. In 2009 the City of Windsor with sponsorship from the Ontario Government brought the Red Bull Races to Windsor and Detroit and it was the first time that they raced in Canada and they drew around 600-700,000 spectators, why because it was on TV and people saw what it was all about. If it wasn't televised I don't think there would have seen as many spectator's/tourist watching them race. TV is one of the main keys to building Offshore Powerboat Racing, along with unification of the sport, select the best race sites that spectators can see the entire race and where the boats can race as close to the spectators as possible and then it will grow. Unfortunately the economy is extremely bad and it is extremely hard to get sponsors under the present circumstances. I am not trashing any buddy or org. but just giving my opinion of where and how the sport needs to evolve for the future.
What you are talking about already exists. It's called Unlimited Hydroplane. What you see today is NOT offshore racing. To call it offshore racing is an insult to those of us that raced offshore. We drew bigger crowds and got more TV coverage than anything you see today. I have to laugh that you call a 7 mile course a long course. That should be a 1/2 of 1 leg of a course. Either change the name of this so-called offshore racing or go back to racing offshore. Do most of todays racers even know where Sand Key is? FYI, it's that marker about 10 miles or so straight ahead of turn 1 at Key West.
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Old 11-09-2009, 12:07 PM
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What you are talking about already exists. It's called Unlimited Hydroplane. What you see today is NOT offshore racing. To call it offshore racing is an insult to those of us that raced offshore. We drew bigger crowds and got more TV coverage than anything you see today. I have to laugh that you call a 7 mile course a long course. That should be a 1/2 of 1 leg of a course. Either change the name of this so-called offshore racing or go back to racing offshore. Do most of todays racers even know where Sand Key is? FYI, it's that marker about 10 miles or so straight ahead of turn 1 at Key West.
Call it what you want, for spectators to sit by the race course and see a boat race by once in a while and usually some distances from them on a long course is and always will be boring for the spectators and that is partially why you don't have the crowds that other sports have and televised. I remember back in the 80's APBA had a race on the the Detroit River with such names as Betty Cook and Al Copland, they raced by us up the Detroit River and went out into Lake St. Clair and around the lake and then came back around an hour and a half later. Now tell me with these two legends of Offshore, if that was an exciting race for the spectators. I remember in 2007 one of the fastest OFFSHORE POWERBOAT RACES in history was held on a 8 mile course on the ST. Clair River and the Bud Select Boat and Miss Geico put on a race that I still remember to this day and hit speeds of 180 MPH. That length course was great for them at that speed but if it were a little short we would have almost continuous race action. At the Gold Cup Races where Offshore puts on an exhibition race every year, Offshore's seem to draw more fan excitement and when the Hydro's can't run because of wind the Offshores are in their element. Call it what you want shorter is better then longer in this case at least for the fans.
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Old 11-09-2009, 01:05 PM
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After talking my grandfather into taking me to my first offshore race in the early 1970's, he didn't think it was fun waiting for raceboats to go by every 20 minutes, he prefered the side by side racing of speed skiffs.
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Old 11-09-2009, 01:30 PM
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After talking my grandfather into taking me to my first offshore race in the early 1970's, he didn't think it was fun waiting for raceboats to go by every 20 minutes, he prefered the side by side racing of speed skiffs.
Offshore racing was never meant as a spectator sport....That's what TV helicopters are for.

I agree with your grandfather.....and he can still see closed course racing with speed skiffs, and hydros, and tunnel boats today.
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Old 11-09-2009, 01:59 PM
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Call it what you want, for spectators to sit by the race course and see a boat race by once in a while and usually some distances from them on a long course is and always will be boring for the spectators and that is partially why you don't have the crowds that other sports have and televised. I remember back in the 80's APBA had a race on the the Detroit River with such names as Betty Cook and Al Copland, they raced by us up the Detroit River and went out into Lake St. Clair and around the lake and then came back around an hour and a half later. Now tell me with these two legends of Offshore, if that was an exciting race for the spectators. I remember in 2007 one of the fastest OFFSHORE POWERBOAT RACES in history was held on a 8 mile course on the ST. Clair River and the Bud Select Boat and Miss Geico put on a race that I still remember to this day and hit speeds of 180 MPH. That length course was great for them at that speed but if it were a little short we would have almost continuous race action. At the Gold Cup Races where Offshore puts on an exhibition race every year, Offshore's seem to draw more fan excitement and when the Hydro's can't run because of wind the Offshores are in their element. Call it what you want shorter is better then longer in this case at least for the fans.
Please help me figure out what the short courses have done to help the growth of offshore racing as a sport. There have never been fewer boats racing and there have never been more classes. If the quality of the product on short courses is so wonderful, why don't you see the guys doing the video of the races posting segments online to increase interest. Go to youtube and find me anything but a glorified music video of a short course race. On the other hand, look at some of the stuff that is out there from Phil and Rich and it's always about the racing. IN MY OPINION, a key reason for no coverage for shourt course racing is becauase it's boring and confusing. I think it's great that these boats can go 180mph. But that doesn't make them offshore boats. Offshore racing was never meant to find the top speed or the cornering capability of a boat. It was meant to pit man and machine against the elements.

I still don't understand why all of these changes that have been made to gain spectators have resulted in fewer spectators and followers.
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Old 11-09-2009, 02:26 PM
  #50
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Lake St. Clair - OK - it can get rough there -but the DETROIT River - um... -oh - thats right - its OFFSHORE - one side is Canada - the other the US - forgot ! (it still is RIVER racing -)

Years ago - the likes of Bobby Routboard, Eddie LeCareau, Bill Wishnick, Doc Magoon - Tom Gentry - and others - raced not for TV - or the crowds - it was a rich mans sport - unto themselves - if people went to sites like Point Pleasant - they would enjoy seeing the rigs at the Kings Grant Inn - then the parades thru town, maybe the Blue Angels would put on a show - also the Bud Clydesdales -(sp - never graduated high school) - and then watch the boats run out the inlet - and that was it - People did not stay glued to a seat it was the atmosphere - not just watching a boat - Years later when I got involved, we tried to bring what happened out of site - to the masses - I can remember having a truck - with several large TVs - and people would leave the boardwalk at night and stop by and watch what really happened offshore - They then could see what happens out of site of land -

Today - Offshore is a Wallet check - how much can you spend - and how big a rig - or how many rigs can you support - whats the saying - "if it dont go - chrome it" - Back in the day - and I mean early days - you would not see Don Arronow in a Jump suit - never saw him like that - same with Doc Magooon - or Willie Meyers or Tony Azzara - but towards the late 70s - fashion took over - however - we were still lucky to be able to film boats in rough water - Anyone that wants to see what Offshore is really like - take a look at BIG SEAS - Big Seas 85 - it was a rough year - when you see the likes of two superboats - Maggies MerCruiser with George Morrales, and Popeyes with Al Copeland - running side by side - 50 ft boats or so - and both jumping out of the water - well - what does that tell you - ? THATS OFFSHORE ! even in those days- they needed a compass - not just land marks to guide them -

Today a race is shortened to a mini lap if the seas are 3 ft. - back in the day - no one even looked at the weather forcast - it was only called off if a huricane was there.

Here are some photos that were NOT TAKEN IN THE RIVER - or in the bay !
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