With an estimated 10,000 spectators watching from Memorial Park and an additional 100 vessels anchored in the St. Johns River, yesterday’s P1 SuperStock USA event in Jacksonville, Fla., provided some great races.
The No. 15 Boatwrench.com team picked up it first victory of the season in Jacksonville. Photos courtesy P1 SuperStock USA
By the end of the season’s third round, the Boatwrench.com team of Gary Harris and Richie Webster finished in first place overall at the third annual Jacksonville Grand Prix of the Sea. With Team Barbados and GEICO winning the first two rounds of the year, respectively, the season finale in Sarasota, Fla., in a few weeks (July 2-3) should be a can’t-miss event.
Harris, a veteran tunnel-boat champion, and Webster, a New Zealand native from Florida who was competing in just his third boat race, finished ahead of the HalloweenMegaStore.com team of Jamie Canter and Walt Cox and the third-place Xplode Marketing team of Mark Niemann and Francis Suits.
The No. 31 HalloweenMegaStore.com team finished second overall to move up in the points standing heading into the season finale.
“Jacksonville was awesome—racing with the city and the bridge in the background made it even more entertaining,” said Webster, who has raced cars and go-carts competitively for some time but never boats before this year. “It was especially nice to get the win coming off of a disappointing result in St. Cloud, where we could have won the event but a penalty took us out of the running. There was some real good racing in Jacksonville—everyone was on their game.
“We had one accident out there but the P1 safety staff was all over it,” he continued. “This racing is so much fun. We don’t just run in straight lines, these boats are like go-carts on the water. We’re looking forward to Sarasota after moving up in the standings heading into the final race of the season.”
The local team—Visit Jacksonville’s Jimmy Hill and George Ivy—were ejected from their boat during the race after swapping paint with Team Barbados but reportedly were uninjured. The boats, on the other hand, will need some repairs before the Sarasota race.
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