In a welcome change of plans for offshore powerboat racing fans, today’s Mod V, Stock V and Bracket-class racing and pole-position qualifying rounds at the St. Petersburg Grand Prix in Southwest Florida will be streamed live on the P1 Offshore website and Facebook page. Led by veteran broadcaster and former offshore racer Mike Yowaiski, racing coverage is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.
Pro Floors Racing will be among the seven Super Cat teams competing in today’s qualifying event at the St. Petersburg Grand Prix. Photo by Jeff Helmkamp copyright Helmkamp Photos.
The races will be followed by pole-position qualifying—two laps for each team on the six-mile course—in Class 1 and Super Cat. At the Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix in early July, event producer P1 Offshore resurrected the once-popular grid-setting format for Class 1. At the Grand Lakes Grand Prix in Michigan City, Ind., last month, the Super Cat class also adopted it.
“There’s a lot of fast, flat water here,” said Tyler Miller of the M CON team, which claimed the Super Cat-class pole position at the Michigan City event. “The dogleg on this course throws a curveball, so who will take the pole is anyone’s guess.”
Time allowing, 10-registered Super Stock-class teams also will take to the racecourse this afternoon for pole-position qualifying. It will be the first time in recent United States offshore racing history that the outboard catamaran class has used the grid-setting format.
“Our class voted yesterday to do qualifying,” said Ryan Beckley, the Super Stock-class representative and the throttleman for the CELSIUS team. “P1 is trying to fit it in. It’s supposed to be at 5 p.m. if time allows.”
Featuring the Mod V, Stock and Bracket 300 and 400 classes, the St. Petersburg Grand Prix is scheduled to begin tomorrow at 10 a.m.
This story is developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.
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