Onondaga Lake (Willow Bay) – Syracuse, NY
June 16-17, 2012
J and Fae Report
Oh my, a great Syracuse race stymied by that infernal wind. The pits were packed like sardines as ACHA needed a shoe horn to squeeze in 71 boats. Saturday was picture perfect and Sunday looked beautiful as well except for the persistent breeze. The racing action was very good on this nice wide course on Saturday. Anyone who made the finals was going to be extremely proud. Alas, it wasn't to be. It is doubly frustrating with a field like this one but let's face it, wind delays hardly ever work.
This race was incredible two years ago and the potential for the border series (Syracuse, Tonawanda and Webster) looked unbelievable. Everybody has a finger to point on that subject but we'll just say the demise of the border series was caused by "communication" issues. We did miss the gigantic, friendly volunteer army that did a tremendous job here in 2010. ACHA has the boats but a combo of boats and local support can't be beat. Things run much smoother that way. (see Valleyfield, Detroit and Cambridge)
Here is the J and Fae boat count: ( T-8) (S-26) (H-16) (GP-12) (Vintage-9) total-71.
T boats ran one heat on Saturday. Michael Tremblay (CT-11) Timothee Special was the favorite after Leanna Richards (T-777) Steeler broke during the warm-up. Michael (T-11) did not disappoint holding off a hard charging Leah Hoosick (T-27) Chaotic Dream and Daniel Emond (CT-51) Trimax. Michael (CT-11) looks great in Fred Benzinger's former Legacy hull.
Vintage boats put on a good show. The participants were (K-18) Sunburst (a two seater), (JS-76) Flyin Hi, (JS-9) Pa Pa's Bundle, (JS-77) Zippy Pickle, (H-66) Miss Gangway, (J-317) Irishman, (GP-1001) Dynomytes, (GP-222) Canadiana, (H-63) Tool Crib.
S boats ran two sets of four heats due to the ridiculous numbers. Look up depth in the dictionary and ACHA "stockers" will be pictured. As we stated in the Long Sault story, there will be bombs on the sideline for every final this class runs this Summer. This weekend a combo of points and speed will decide the winner. Eight heats- eight different winners. Enough said. Heat winners were Gene Difalco (S-80) On The Edge, (Steve Armstrong (CS-11) Total Chaos, Sylvain Maheu (CS-19) Top Gun, Yan Lecompte (CS-28) Mario Hart, Doug Rapp (CS-79) Bad Influence, Kent Henderson (CS-519) Bank On
It, Rob Stephenson (CS-10) Wet Spot and Yves Villanueve (CS-6) Graf-X. Doug (CS-79) and Sylvain (CS-19) added a second to total 46 points. Kent (CS-519) looked extremely fast as well as the S boats were an absolute war.
H boats ran three heats with bombs everywhere. Some of last year's five litres have modified their engines to swell this class to about eighteen right now with a few more to appear at Valleyfield. Oooh, one of those will be Claude Bergeron's new hull. This weekend's race was decided on time. Norm Ensbury (CH-99) Ocr Racing, on his roof at Long Sault, bounced back to take the title followed by hard charging Derek Smith (CH-13) Adrenaline Rush and Jonathon Abbott (CH-10) Head Rush. That is two good weeks for Jonathon as he took third in Long Sault. Wow, twenty plus boats at Valleyfield will be sick as all of these guys are fast.
GP boats ran three heats with heat 1c finishing on Sunday morning after Eric Langivin (GP-12) Long Shot rode up a roostertail on Saturday's last heat. Eric was fine and the hull was repaired for Sunday. Marc Theoret (GP-444) GP Valleyfield, Tom Pakradooni (GP-88) Rolling Thunder and Jimmy Shane (GP-10) Charger won the hotly contested heats. The top three times were turned in by Jimmy (GP-10), Ghislain Marcoux (GP-101) ABS, and Tom (GP-88). Throw in six more heats and a final and it would have been incredible. Oh well, the GP battles promise to be unreal all season. He who wins the high points will be an absolute big bad bomber. Brockville will be on fire in a couple of weeks.
Well, that's about it from Syracuse. Saturday's action was fast and furious. Yes, the competition in this series is going to build to a crescendo in Valleyfield, like always. Put this field with several key additions and lookout, we can't wait! Brockville, Valleyfield, St. Felicien, Webster and Beaurnois fans are in for a treat, if Mother Nature allows it. See ya in Madison. J and Fae