Originally scheduled for today, the St. Clair River Classic in Michigan was—like all events in the six-race 2020 American Power Boat Association Offshore Championship Series—cancelled. But that didn’t mean the area was devoid of action as yesterday’s Old School Raceboat Reunion on Lake St. Clair attracted more than 20 former raceboats and assorted classic powerboats. Started 10 years ago by de facto offshore racing historian Mark Olewin, the event has served as a precursor to the annual St. Clair River Classic races.
Brands from Apache to Pantera (above) were represented in yesterday’s Old School Raceboat Reunion in Michigan. Photos by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix/speedonthewater.com.
“It was started as a gathering on Saturday before the Sunday races,” said Chip Miller of Miller Marina, who lives in St. Clair Shores along with a healthy contingent of go-fast boating enthusiasts including Skater Powerboats man Ron Szolack, who was on hand for the event. “We support the event but we really don’t really ‘promote’ it —we don’t sell tickets or anything like that. People just show up with their boats on the race weekend.
“We had more people show up this year than I expected,” he added.
Speedonthewater.com chief photographer Pete Boden captured all the action. Among the longtime participants who joined in the fun yesterday was veteran Michigan-based engine builder Tyler Crockett.
“I saw a lot of my old raceboat customers there,” said Crockett, who is planning to run a V-bottom with a 3,000-hp supercharged engine in the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout next month. “It was a lot fun.”
Check out the slideshow above to enjoy more images from yesterday’s event.
The event has no formal lunch run/destination component. Miller said he and his fellow organizers are hoping to change that next year.
“There are a lot of guys, not so much the guys in the smaller Donzis and so on, but guys with the bigger boats, who would like to run across the lake,” he said.
As it happened, when reached by phone this afternoon, Miller was about to head across the lake himself in a less-than-old-school 40-foot Skater.
“Ron Szolack is following us in a 52 Skater and Don Doty is behind him in a 426,” he said.
Miller, Szolack and Doty crossed Lake St. Clair today in less-than-old-school fashion.