BAYFAIR MUNCEY CUP,
SAN DIEGO, SEPT. 22, 2002
Heat Results ...
U-9 Sun Harbor Mortgage 146.226
U-16 ELAM Plus 145.014
U-3 Vactionville.com 139.431
U-2 Miss Trendwest 135.850
U-1 Miss Budweiser 132.223
U-25 Superior Racing 124.905
U-10 Miss EMCOR 122.179
HEAT 1A ------ HEAT 1B
U-10 142.852 -- U-1 149.350
U-2 135.875 --- U-16 147.288
U-6 131.915 --- U-99 141.220
U-3 117.777 --- U-8 125.693
U-100 Lap Pen --- U-25 DNF
U-9 101.038 ---- --------------
HEAT 2A ------ HEAT 2B
U-9 146.311 ---- U-16 142.453
U-6 135.726 --- U-1 135.436
U-2 134.390 ---- U-8 131.552
U-3 126.257 ---- U-2 114.256
U-10 95.631 --- U-99 xxx.xxx
U-100 Flipped ------ -----------
HEAT 3A ------ HEAT 3B
U-3 148.585 ---- U-9 146.850
U-10 148.175 --- U-2 138.681
U-1 140.494 ---- U-16 134.169
U-6 134.216 ---- U-25 132.692
U-8 xxx.xxx --- U-99 Lap Pen
Final Results from Qualifying ...
U-3 Vacationville.com - Mitch Evans 160.370
U-1 Miss Budweiser - Dave Villwock 158.816
U-9 Sun Harbor Mortgage - Mike Hanson 158.386
U-16 Miss Elam Plus - Nate Brown 157.930
U-10 Miss EMCOR - Mike Weber 157.095
U-99 25centcolor.com - Terry Troxell 152.382
U-2 Trendwest - Mark Tate 150.278
U-8 Llumar Window Film - Jimmy King 149.922
U-6 Oh Boy! Oberto - Steve David 148.925
U-25 Superior Racing Team - Ken Muscatel 145.048
U-100 Vons Superstore - Greg Hopp No Time
Stories from Bayfair ...
Aggressive Hanson steers Sun Harbor to upset on Mission Bay ...
By Don Norcross, UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER, September 23, 2002 ...
When you're flying around a corner at 140 mph, on the water, steering a three-ton, 2,800-horsepower boat, decisions arrive in a split second.
Nose in front of a rival driver, or wait?
Crashes imperil but don't intimidate two drivers
Mike Hanson was not a patient man yesterday. And for his aggressiveness, for spraying Mitch Evans' Unlimited Hydroplane with salt water, Hanson would later be sprayed with beer to celebrate his victory.
Hanson's assertive maneuver coming out of Turn 4 on Mission Bay enabled him to push the underdog Sun Harbor Mortgage boat to victory in the Bill Muncey Cup.
"When you get in the finals," said Hanson, "you get aggressive. There was room there for one boat, but there wasn't room for two."
So was the move daring or dangerous?
"I probably wouldn't have been that harsh," said Evans, who said he had to pull off the throttle to avoid contact. "There was a lot of water in the air (being sprayed at him by Hanson). I did all I could to get out of it."
On a sun-rinsed afternoon, with an estimated 80,000 fans lining Fiesta Island, East Vacation Isle and perched atop the Ingraham Street bridge, it figured that a dicey move would decide the signature event at the 37th annual Classmates.com Thunderboat Regatta.
Earlier in the day there were two frightening accidents. Greg Hopp rolled over an Unlimited Hydroplane in the morning. Come afternoon, in Formula One, Japan's Yuzo Okawa got air beneath the boat's nose and flipped over backward. In a testament to the boats' safety, neither driver was injured.
As for his move, Hanson wasn't penalized. But he did shake Evans' cockpit.
Coming out of Turn 4 on the third lap of the five-lap race, Hanson, in Lane 2, had nosed ahead of Evans in Lane 1. In a split second, Hanson veered left.
"He didn't give me any extra room," said Evans.
"I've raced Mitch about 15 years," said Hanson, who lives in Auburn, Wash. "I know he's done that to me once or twice."
Besides, Hanson was just following orders. His brother, Larry, who builds the boat's engine, radioed to Mike, "Tighten it up! Tighten it up!"
"And that's what we did," said Mike.
Evans, whose piston-powered Vacationville finished third, one spot behind Miss Elam Plus, said he wouldn't pull Hanson aside behind a trailer and discuss the incident. In fact, he later grudgingly complimented his rival.
"He had the right to take the lane and he took it," Evans said. "That's racing. It's dog eat dog."
The victory capped a roller-coaster weekend for Hanson. In Saturday's qualifying, his boat finished sixth in a six-boat heat. Something was amiss with the turbine engine, but the crew couldn't determine the problem.
"I didn't sleep well," Hanson said.
Then the crew came out yesterday, plopped a different engine in the boat – the same one that struggled on Friday – and won two heats plus the final. A three-for-three sweep. From worst to first.
There was one other factor in Sun Harbor's victory – the series' unusual method of selecting lane assignments for the finals. After eight heat races, the boats were lined up in inverse order of their point totals.
Miss Budweiser, which had accumulated the most points, was stuck outside in Lane 6. Asked what he thinks of the system, Budweiser driver Dave Villwock said, "I'll get fined for anything I say."
Nate Brown, stuck in Lane 5 after earning the second-most qualifying points, wasn't so cautious.
"Kind of stinks," he said.
In the series' previous five races this season, Villwock's Miss Budweiser won three times, Brown twice. The reasoning behind the tactic is to give other boats a chance.
"Maybe it works, maybe it doesn't," said series commissioner Gary Garbrecht. "But it's the best show for the fans."
Villwock couldn't complain too vociferously. In the morning qualifying, Miss Budweiser clinched its fifth straight season title and 11th championship in 12 years.
It was an emotional moment watching the red-and-white-clad team gather in front of its boat, unfurling another banner with 76-year-old owner Bernie Little.
In the previous 40 years, Little had missed one race. But a bout with pneumonia forced him to miss three races this year.
Not that the patriarch is in a mood to step aside now that he's feeling better.
"Hell, no!" boomed Little, a towering man whose name hardly befits him. "I'm not the retiring type."