If all goes well in negotiations among Sam Cole, the H1 Unlimited hydroplane chairman, Wan Hongjun, the Chinese Motorboat Association general secretary, and Zhengmin Shi, Beijing Kingolym President, there could be a race in China on the 2012 Air National Guard Series H1 Hydroplane tour. Though the deal is far from complete, Cole said he is optimistic about the chances of a tour stop in China.
“We are excited about engaging Beijing Kingolym to make this expansion happen,” Cole said. “They have worked with boat racing in the past, have the support of the leadership of the Chinese Motorboat Association, and have opened an office in Beijing to take this to the next level.”
There are several significant challenges to overcome to make the race a reality, starting with securing a working agreement with the Union Internationale Motonautique, the international governing body for powerboat racing, to expand the tour with additional international events. On the internal side of the sport, teams would need to convert to using containers for shipping their boats and equipment to China.