Beating a dead 3"


As of this Friday, if my Mirage has not sold I am bringing it back to Rick @ Islander Marine and he is going to re-do the entire hull, beef it up for racing, re-gel it, and add the 3" to the sponson tips. His shop recently changed my DCB f29 from an open bow to a closed bow and they are amazingly talented folks. The boat is going to be completely re-rigged and I will be building a 2.0.

So the $64,000 question, am I adding the 3" cost to my tab at Islander Marine or should I just save the money in hopes that the rules may change / be relaxed on this issue for the 2013 season?

My preference would be to save the money that would be spent on the 3" issue and pay my entrance fees for the balance of the 2012 season and get another boat in the field. Either way I will be racing in August at Long Beach, but it would be nice to be there with a 18'3 inch boat.

If I win a race by less than 3" then I will hand over my trophy :)

- Walt

Propman's picture

Let me begin by saying that whatever I say will have no bearing on rule changes, in fact this forum is a collection of opinons and my post is just another one. That said, I don't think we should change the rules to accomodate every boater who wants to enter the class with a boat that doesn't fit within the rules. I don't mean to be a spoilsport and I would love to race against you, but if we stretch the rule for one guy, we open the door for the next guy, pretty soon we will all be racing $50,000 capsule boats with mod U motors. The people who made these rules up initially had some good ideas and some bad ideas, but it is safe to say that they had a wealth of experience in what it may take make a long lasting and well received APBA class. Ron Hill, Bill James, and Rod Zapf have been around to watch the beginning and the end of Mod VP racing.

So let's talk about the length rule, when I built my boat the rule was 19 feet. I talked to Ron and asked him why, and he told me the Mirages and the STV's were purposely excluded with this rule because usually they were constructed with lots of lift and little weight. This translates into a boat that requires a "skill" factor to drive and a boat with a limited lifetime of racing in rough conditions. Are they fast? sure, are they dangerous in the wrong hands... well yes. Look at the history of STV's and Mirages in the Enduro, of the five that I can think of tonight, more have wreaked than have finished. The two STV's that have finished the Enduro have both undergone extensive and expensive structural modifications.

Again, just my opinion, but I would reconsider modifying the sponson tips. Our rules say that any additions to the boat to accomodate the length rule must be structural...what does this mean, well we talked to Roger Carr and he allowed that the ruling would be based on the idea if you could lift up the boat by the addition without breaking it, it may considered structural. Still if it's me, why put big bucks into a boat that's too short and depend on a generous call from the inspector before you can hit the water?

Ok, last point, "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" if the powers that be allow you to "stretch the rules" in order to gain a new member, what about the existing members that worked hard to comply with the rules that were in force when they joined? Could it be that those of us would have played our cards differently had we a different set of rules to play by? So you may believe it's only three inches and that some of us are being petty, but I believe it may be unfair to the rest of us to be accomodating to you.

Capnzee88's picture

Walt, please donot look for a COR rule change, not during the 2012 or 2013 racing years, and most likely not after that. I have spoken extensively with the APBA's chief inspector and he has stated what he would accept in a structural change and that has been passed on to you. I have raced against the Mirage boats and I do believe they are both fast and safe. I don't think 3 inches will make a hill of beans of difference other than conforming to the written COR rules which you must do if you want to race your boat as a COR boat. I object to the "generous call from an inspector" used in the last comment. Roger Carr is the APBA chief inspector. You will not be "called out" by anyone once your boat meets the measurement rule and passes muster with him. I believe that we all look forward to you joining our COR family, it is your decision to make, you either work within the COR rules and join us or watch us as we grow in numbers. Have fun in COR. Rod Zapf, COR Chairman

007's picture

If it is encouraging at all, the number 86 tunnel boat glassed tips on the sponsons right in the Parker pits this weekend to meet the champ boat safety rules to roger carr's satisfaction. Also, people in this class are spending money in different ways, more then they will ever admit... But I believe that is common in all forms of competition.

STV_Keith's picture

Good to see you online Rod! Saturday I heard you were in the hospital. Sorry to hear that. Wishing you a speedy recovery and return to the COR competitor lineup!