2007 IMPBA Gas Nationals

natslogo_s.jpg

The 2007 IMPBA Gas Nationals...the best of the best battled it out for National Champion Titles!






The 2007 IMPBA Gas Nationals were held in Celina Ohio USA on September 14th through 16th. This was the second time the Gas Nationals were held in Celina, the first time being in 2004. After the tremendous success of the 2004 race, everyone hadImage extremely high expectations for the `07 race! To help tackle the huge task of putting on such a large scale event, two host clubs joined forces this time. The Cincinnati Model Boat Club and the Driftwood Model Boat Club worked in sync to make this race the success that it was. The three day event included two full days of racing on Friday ( 8am to 8pm) and Saturday(8am to 6pm, followed by banquet) and a half day of racing on Sunday, followed by the awards ceremony. A full day of controlled open water running preceded on Thursday.

Thursday night we all stay on site for a gathering and we were treated to some awesome food, all supplied by racers. Carlo Catalanotto served one of his famous Cajun boils; this time featuring Blue Crab...it was great! Other racers treated us to some awesome lobster, steak and so much other great food! The fun went on late into the night! I would also like to thank Paul Hale and Richard Lind for sharing some of their specialties with me. I don't remember everything by name, but the Blackened Catfish was the best I have ever tasted!

A total of 120 racers from the United States and seven other countries registered 372 boats for the race. Racers from as far as Australia, Japan, Germany, The Netherlands, Bermuda, New Zealand and Canada participated in the action. There were concessions on site by the Visiting Nurses of Celina. R/V parking was allowed on site for duration of the event. There was also ample room for pits and trailers and despite the number of people there, the way the pits were organized made it fairly easy to get in and out of the area at the beginning and end of every day.

Image The racing was as intense as is to be expected from a National event. In total there were 12 classes and a total of 3 rounds were completed. The crew kept the races moving along fairly smoothly along the weekend, but I think a 4 day event will most likely have to be considered for future Gas Nationals if the organizers wish to get in 4 full rounds of racing. There are more and more racers at these large races and new classes are being added all the time. This year the Super Sport class was added and we can expect to see the addition of the Thunderboat class in future events. This is a good sign. Gas model boating is growing at a good pace and we need to accommodate for this growth!

Overall I think the two hosting clubs did a great job and would like to thank them for the effort they put into it and congratulate them on the success of the event. I look forward to more great races like this and maybe someday we will have the opportunity to once again race in Celina Ohio!  

Marc Levac.





A few words from Contest Director Dan Kramer:

ImageThanks to everyone attending. About 10 months worth of planning, not constant, but weekly and then at last nearly every day, went into our gas nationals and every minute was worth it. The Thursday night party at the site was simply awesome, like nothing I have ever seen. The competitors coming from all over the world and 20 of the U.S. states, unbelievable. The willingness of participants to help out was outstanding. Our Saturday night banquet exceeded our expectations with over 200 attending. Meeting and being able to talk to many of the people we meet on the web, makes it all more real. 

Personally, I will never be able to forget being awarded the Johnny Ber award, thanks to everyone who voted on that.   It was truly a lifetime of memories that were created for everyone.

Dan Kramer, co-contest director 

 





Here is what Marc Weijenberg from The Netherlands had to say about his experience at the 2007 Gas Nationals (I think Marc really enjoyed it, he had a lot to say!)


"We are back home again......" It has been a wonderful experience. Our trip to the Gasnats was everything we hoped for andImage more.

We, Jeroen, Andre and me, were planning this trip for what felt like a hundred years, flooding each other’s email accounts with anticipation. Finally it was time to go to Celina!! Andre came from Germany to my house on Tuesday afternoon and we went to Amsterdam in a hotel (thanks to Andre’s wife Sandra and son Eliah for bringing us there), because we were flying early Wednesday morning. On Wednesday morning we met up with Jeroen at the airport. We were feeling as giddy as a couple of 12 year old girls…… We had a very smooth flight with some bumps over Greenland as the pilot would not take our sound advice to fly a bit higher. We landed at O’Hare airport in Chicago (after some great views of Lake Michigan and Chicago) and customs was cleared without any problems. Andre had arranged for a rental car and we were quickly on our way to Celina. After a six hour drive we arrived in Celina at the Best Value Inn Motel where Jeroen had booked a suite for us there already some months ago.

We arrived in Celina on Wednesday evening (and had a nice chat with our welcoming committee who already checked in at the Best Value Inn Motel). Thursday morning we left early for the park where the event took place. A little shy (who were those funny looking red-t-shirted guys?) we stumbled over to Bob and Brian Blazer and some others we knew of Jim's boat dock. We received a very, very warm welcome by everyone we met, so we felt right at home. Sometimes surprised by the faces matching the nicknames on the various web-boards, you soon see the same camaraderie, friendliness and hospitality you appreciate so much with this hobby.

Image The races were on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Thursday was open water. The term "open water" should not be read as "play-boating" (as we know it). You get about five minutes per heat to do some testing and not many boats are allowed on the water all at once. Also with more than three "dead-boats" in the water, the session was stopped. I must say excellent planning, discipline by both boaters and officials were impressive. Bob & Brian Blazer, Dan Kramer and pit boss MatthewImage Waldron took good care that everything went smooth and safe. That is something the European boaters need to learn a bit more. Before the trip, we had various offers coming in to race a couple of boats during the event. We thought it would be best to compete in the super sport stock class. Jeroen and I eagerly accepted the invitations, Andre declined by saying in sort of Schwarzenegger way; "I will just take pictures". Now if you know Jeroen and I, you know we do not to accept no for an answer, so we entered Andre in the race, without him knowing it. Marc Levac, Dom Mauro and Brian Blazer were in the loop to. As the entry list was on the web to, we decided to enter Andre as Mr. A.A. van Buuren. AA for Andre Abtmeyer and Van Buuren was the nickname our royal prince used for entering anonymously in an ice skate-race some years ago. Only upon registration at the truck with Brian Blazer, it became clear to Andre he had to run some laps…… You should have seen the expression on his face! Ever see a guy’s face when his girlfriend is telling him she is pregnant? In the evening we had the traditional cook-out! Now I understand what bbq-ing is all about. And the crab from Carlo tasted very good to! It got really late and we were lucky Jim Maples brought us back to the motel as self-appointed designated driver. Thanks Jim!

Jeroen got a Razor from Dom Mauro, Andre an Insane Mono from Marc Levac and I got a PI Fountain from Dom Moreno and Bob Fin. We all got some time on the water on Thursday. I was one of the last to come in after some rubbing with Butch "The boatman and I want to have some fun" Fields. It was a prelude of what was to come the following days.

The races in the US are a bit different than on the European side of the big pond. A six to eight lap "explosion" of adrenaline, excitement and action. It is over before you know it (now where did I experience that feeling before......). There's is the anticipation and tension of mill-time before the start. Looking to find the best position and spot to launch yourself over the starting line, right on the clock. Sometimes you wish time was just a little bit slower, this is one of those moments. Once passed the starting line, everybody rushes to buoy #1, trying to get there first and leaving the mayhem there behind you, preferably in your prop wash. Well as everybody has the same ambition, you do not need a vivid imagination to see what is going to happen there. Really bad crashes were just a few. I believe I saw 5 total loses (of which two had radio-problems). Most of the crashes are blow-offs and barrel-rolls. So that actually is not bad considering the amount of different classes, heats and boats that are competing. That takes that out that old saying that racing only causes more damages. I have seen worse things happen on a play-day. Taking in account everybody plays nice and fair, of course.

Image Friday morning! Race day! Entering the park, you can feel the tension. Everybody is a bit nervous….. You can tell by how many times tools are dropped and even the simplest job becomes a mission impossible……. The opening ceremony comprised a speech by the mayor and officials and the singing of the national anthem. Dan Kramer asked if anybody else wanted to sing their anthem, as so many different nationalities were present. Well all looked as us Europeans to but we thought it was not a good idea; it would have ended the event before it got started. Our flag on the driver stand was a good solution for all attending. As karaoke is very popular in Japan Mr. "H" (Okuma, Hiroyuki) seized the opportunity and stood proudly next to Dan on the stand and sang like there was no tomorrow.

In the early hours of the day it was still a bit chilly and the sun was quite low on the water. Aiming for buoy #4 was somewhat of a gamble. The British call this a "closing your eyes and think of England my dear!" feeling. As the drivers were on a driver stand some extra view of the oval was provided for. The driver stand also housed the speaker and the officials and below was the transmitter stand. The pit area was divided into "odd and even" heats, making the preparation and start smooth, fast and safe. After starting the engines ("gentleman you are on the clock"), the driver went up the stand and the pitman threw the boat into the water. The pitman then came up the stand as well. That is what we have in Europe to, although a driver stand is something to be put on our something-we-already-should-have-done-list.

For us foreign guys the comments by the pitman needed to be translated in our minds, so we had to concentrate really hard. Once on the water you have 2,5 minute mill-time before the start. You need to find your position and lane and hold it. Once in the thick of it all, a mistake is very difficult to correct as you only have 6-8 laps. Although a bad start does not mean you are out of the race and lots can and will happen.

The boats. We know the monos, hydros, cats, riggers and c-boxes here to. In Europe these boats have a more scale likeImage appearance and more "engineered". The monos in the US are more stable and well setup (like the AC’s, Strykers, Hurricanes, Insanes, Aeromarine, etc). The cats look less spectacular as they run more stable as a result of their design. The c-boxes are very fast (to fast for many). If they ran in the offshore class for instance they could hold their own very well. I heard in the pit-area that when they allowed tuned pipes in that class, the "gentleman-fun-cbox-class" seized to be. They however look very spectacular. Even more spectacular are the sport hydros (Whiplash, Insane, Stryker, and Aeromarine). The dash they make for lane#1 at the first buoy is very impressive and it is rare that all boats finish their race. They are so fast that is very hard for the drivers to keep up with the events on the water. Respect to them and the officials who have to judge what is going on.

The first 3-4 contenders in the super sport stock class (in which we competed) have so much speed they could compete in the European offshore class with mod motors and tuned pipe. So it actually is all in the set-up of the boat, but that is nothing new now is it? We did not do to bad I guess, finishing 9, 10,11th place in a field of 22 boats. Another thing I learned from Mr. Bench race himself, Mike Gilman, was that the intimidation starts at unloading your car….. Good lessons Mike, I will put them to good use!

Interesting are the open classes and the results as well. The electric powered boats give the internal combustion propelled boatsImage a run for their money. But as always, the fastest boat does not always win. "You have to finish, to finish first". As always after the finish, there is some discussion going on regarding who did what, to whom and when. I have a huge respect for both drivers and officials but there is always the human factor as no electronic devises are used during the race. European boats are equipped with transponders and the course is governed by officials and electronic counting devices. That rules out the human factor or at least brings it back to a minimum. I have to give it to the officials to make the call on an incident that happened in a split second involving 2-3 boats….. It was however very refreshing and re-assuring to see that after the race everybody was just good friends as when they started the race.

The park itself was nicely divided into camp-spots for everybody. Most of the competitors have a truck and trailer (boy are they big!) with everything in it. Looking into 1-2 trailers you see a workbench (bigger than my hobby-room), several boats, chargers, inverters, generator, the obvious bbq and sometimes even an ac unit. Same as in Europe the suppliers and manufacturers show their merchandise. With one big difference, they race too. So every now and then the shop is closed. That is a good thing because you get "field-tested" stuff and so is the advice and instructions.

What struck me is the very simple set-up of the boats and simplicity of the hardware. I have read and seen it on Jim’s boat dock and sites like Modelgasboats.com, but seeing it in real life you get the chance to see it working. And it works. Rubber bands to hold down the RC boxes, etc. Very effective and purpose built for racing. All with the K.I.S.S. principal in mind. Although I have seen some problems with on-off switches and battery packs. I even saw 1-2 of the dreaded plastic battery-holders. Furthermore lots of IV bag set-up for fuel and meticulously setting up of the boat.

Nice thing was the raffle-table. We brought with us some gifts (club hats, shirts, etc) and Jeroen and Andre contributed some extra things for the raffle-table, like tuned pipes, carbs, calendars, etc. So if you see some guys with those red shirts and/or Imagehats, you know they were at Celina. As usual I bought the tickets and somebody else took the prizes. That’s the story of my life though, so I have no problem with that. I beat (well only just) Mike, Andre and Jeroen in the super sport class…. can’t buy raffle tickets for that now can you? Could not buy tickets for the wonderful burgers Ron & Cindy Cook (yes it is in the name), cooked for us as well. Ron & Cindy, thank you and also for the tips for eating out in Chicago!

As the races progressed, Saturday evening came. We were all invited for a sit-down dinner at the local American Legion. Everybody dressed up nice (some even took a shower) and the dinner tasted really good. The beer tasted even better (never knew Bud-Light was such a heavy drink). During dinner the raffle for the Insane Hydro was announced and Jeff Michaud even brought another Hydro to the raffle-table. We also got to vote for the "Johnny Ber Award". Come Sunday, Dan Kramer rightfully was announced the winner.

Sunday was the last day of racing. Sadly that day always comes too soon. Some runoffs were needed to make a discussion in Imagethe various classes. And the Trophy-dash was also very interesting. Eyes closed, pedal to the metal, hammer Imagedown and hope you can reach the finish. There is no holding back because the heat race is over. Sunday afternoon was for the award ceremony. Top dogs took top prizes although there is always room for surprises. But experience next to the right set-up, counts to. Next to contributions to the raffle table during the event, some to the sponsors also put up some extra prizes in most classes. Well to all good things that must come to an end, so did the Gasnats. The event closed in the early afternoon because everybody needs to come home safe and sound. The distances in the US are big, so competitors driving 15-38 hours to get back home deserve some respect. We talked some more and had a couple of soda’s to end the event for us. Then came the time to say goodbye to everybody. What remains are good friends, nice memories, pictures, video and new friendships….. Although I did not take home an award, the trip to the Gasnats in Celina, meeting and spending time with you all, was the first prize for me!

I like to thank Jeroen and Andre for the effort they invested in organising the trip, for lending Jeroen's camera and for being such good friends. Now I need to start saving up for next time…….

 





Contest Officials for this race were:

  • Co-Contest Director: Brian Blazer (CMBC)Image
  • Co-Contest Director: Dan Kramer (DMBC)
  • Score Keeper: Chelsea Blazer
  • Retrieve Boat: Scott Whitcraft
  • Pit Boss: Matthew Waldron
  • Raffle Ticket & T-shirt Sales: Vicki Price and Diann Blazer
  • Announcer: Bob Blazer
  • Facility Logistics: Mike Shay
  • Radio Impound: Gene Helms
  • Audio: Eric VanOver
  • Race Packets: Don Betz

Results


LS27 Mono, Sponsored by M&D Designs

Tyson, Mike

1

400

225

400

1025

 

 

Jacuzzi, Tony

2

400

400

225

1025

 

 

Catalanotto, Carlo

3

300

300

400

1000

 

 



LS27 Catamaran, Sponsored by ModelGasBoats.com

Leslie, Steve

1

300

400

400

1100

 

 

Brobst, Dale

2

400

400

225

1025

 

 

North, Bill

3

400

225

400

1025

 

 



LS27 Outrigger Hydro, Sponsored by Prop Works

Tucker, Kevin

1

400

300

300

1000

 

 

Ghattas, Trent

2

300

350

250

900

 

 

Hammons, Troy

3

25

400

400

825

 

 



XLS27 Mono

Lind, Richard

1

400

400

400

1200

 

 

Hale, Paul

2

300

400

400

1100

 

 

North, Bill

3

400

300

300

1000

 

 



XLS27 Catamaran, Sponsored by Redline Motors

Fields, Butch

1

400

25

400

825

 

 

Place Jr, Ivan

2

25

169

300

494

 

 

Finn, Bob

3

25

400

25

450

 

 



XLS27 Outrigger Hydro, Americas Best Value Inn

Lind, Richard

1

400

400

400

1200

 

 

Hale, Paul

2

169

300

300

769

 

 

Calogero, Joe

3

225

25

125

375

 

 



LS27 Sport Hydro, Sponsored by M&D Designs

Michaud, Jeff

1

300

400

400

1100

 

 

Waldron, Matthew

2

400

300

225

925

 

 

Calogero, Joe

 

400

25

400

825

 

 



Crackerbox, Sponsored by Voodoo Props

Michaud, Jeff

1

300

400

225

925

 

 

Dolsen, Gus

2

225

300

400

925

 

 

Hilldale, Michael

3

300

225

300

825

 

 



LSG Offshore, Sponsored by Hobby Stop West

Waldron, Matthew

1

400

400

400

1200

 

 

Hale, Paul

2

400

400

225

1025

 

 

Ghattas, Trent

3

169

400

400

969

 

 



Super Sport, Sponsored by Herzog Racing Products

Sheren, Kevin

1

350

400

300

1050

 

 

Daft, Jeffrey

2

300

300

400

1000

 

 

Cantavespri, Mike

3

200

300

400

900

 

 



Open Mono, Sponsored by Props by Chris Hoffmann

Lind, Richard

1

300

300

400

1000

 

 

Hale, Paul

2

400

169

300

869

 

 

Tucker, Howard

3

225

400

225

850

 

 



Open Hydro

Ghattas, Trent

1

300

350

300

950

 

 

McGurn, Don

2

300

127

400

827

 

 

Hale, Paul

3

400

0

400

800

 

 

 

Trophy Dash:

Top 6 boats in Sport Hydro, LS27 Hydro and LS27 Cat compete for bragging rights.

LS27 Mono: Tony Jacuzzi

LS27 Cat: Bill North

Sport Hydro: Chris "Juice" Rupley

 

Top

 

Log in to comment

Who's Online

TodayToday2435
YesterdayYesterday2339
Guests : 43
Now Online
-

User Login

Mailbox

You are not logged in.

Mailing List

captcha 
© 2017 Modelgasboats.com. All Rights Reserved.