Driver gives an inside look at drag boat racing
Sun, 22 Jun 2014 22:59:46 GMT —
The roaring of boat engines could be heard all weekend along the Intracoastal Waterway at Bucksport for the U.S. Drag Boat Grand National.
More than 40 speed boats took part, all competing to win. Boats competed in distances between 800 feet and a quarter mile at speeds upwards of 110 miles an hour.
Tommy Moore of Conway was one of those competitors, racing his 20 foot boat along with a mercury engine. "We got a good bunch of guys that we race with, but when we get out on the water it's pretty serious," Moore explained.
On Sunday, Moore raced in the superstock class. Like his competitors, Moore spends hours fine tuning his boat and engine, a combination of speed and power. It's evident in every race from the moment the signal goes green.
"It's actually pretty intense. We spend a lot of hours in the shop, working on motors and turning motors. We spend a lot of time at the lake or river testing. We burn a lot of gas trying to get them ready and get them set up right. It's a fine line there trying to get that perfect set up."
For most of these racers this is a hobby, and all of them are united in a mutual need for speed and adrenaline.
"You gotta love it to do it, because we sure don't make money. We do race for money but of course it doesn't cover the cost of boats and motors, especially if we break one. It gets pretty expensive to replace these motors."
However, that doesn't matter to Moore. Like so many others, he lives to race.
This weekend's event was part of the Outboard Drag Boat Association's summer-long program.