|U-96 Spirit Of Qatar’s Dave Villwock Seals Victory In San Diego Bayfair|
|Monday, 19 September 2011 13:25|
SAN DIEGO (USA): Record-breaking U-96 Spirit of Qatar driver Dave Villwock continued his superb run of form by winning the San Diego Bayfair, round five of the 2011 Air National Guard H1 Unlimited Championship, on Mission Bay, California, on Sunday.
The QMSF-backed driver won his second consecutive meeting at San Diego – his ninth in total - and swept through all his heats to close in on a first national championship in four years.
“I was just hoping to get one more win on this boat and I didn’t know if lady luck would give it to us,” said Villwock. “I can’t say I wasn’t thinking about getting the Ellstrom boat (the team’s owner) into the history books.”
Villwock made a strong start to the five-lap final on the 2.5-mile Bill Muncey Memorial racecourse and led from start to finish with an average speed of 154 mph.
Onlookers had expected a showdown in the final between Villwock and defending National High Points champion Steve David. But it was Kip Brown who applied the pressure late in the race.
David, like Villwock, had also won three of his qualifying heats and been on a similar pace to the U-96 Spirit of Qatar driver in Friday’s qualifying, but David was handed an outside lane in the draw for the final, while Qatar-backed Villwock and Brown benefited from inside lanes. David started third and was never able to make up the ground.
Villwock’s Ellstrom Racing boat, which is supported by the Qatar Marine Sports Federation under the presidency of His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani, had amassed 24 wins before Sunday’s race and was tied with three other hulls. It now holds the record of 25 outright successes.
“I wanted to get the record for the Ellstroms,” said Villwock. “Because if they ever build a new one or it gets put aside, I wanted them to have that record.”
This year’s Air National Guard Hydroplane Series will reach its conclusion with the Oryx Cup world championships in Doha on November 17-19.
Place, Driver, Boat, Speed
1. Dave Villwock, Spirit of Qatar, 154.109 mph
2. Kip Brown, Miss Red Dot, 148.149 mph
3. Steve David, Oh Boy! Oberto, 146.951 mph
4. Scott Liddycoat, Valken.com, 146.393 mph
5. J. Michael Kelly, Degree Men, 140.597 mph
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