Roseburg: Thursday night, we are here. It rained from the beach by our house all the way here. Not just a little spring zephyr either, it rained like God's own super soaker. Almost all the way here.
We are the proud owners of a brand new and amazingly fast boat, named Cavefish Squared, but we are having a problem. The oil temp is climbing too high and oil is venting out the breathers. I've cleaned up a huge mess in the back several times now. Bob McKellar, who came to this race with us, asked me what kind of driveline clearance I had, could the pump be pushing on the thrust bearing in the motor in other words? Something to check tommorrow. I am exhausted from a pretty solid thrash for the last week, motor in and out twice, my eyeballs hurt as does my hands. They both feel like they have been slammed in the car door every day for a week.
Rob Soule confirmed for me what Bob had said, that a driveline pushing on the back of the crank would make the thrust bearing cause your oil temps to climb significantly. I went to Unpredictables (Paul Bagshaw, Rob Soule and Dan Mahoneys) shop to check the clearance. By wiggling the driveline it felt like like it was pushed tight on the pump shaft. I must have done that when aligning the motor, I had set it 1/4 inch then started lining the motor up with the pump, but must have shoved themotor back as I did that. Be more careful!!! I slotted my motor plate bolt holes and slid the motor forward about 1/4 inch and bolted it back down. Don't worry, it isn't going to move, I am using grade 8, 1/2 inch bolts at each corner sandwiching two aluminum plates, one 3/4 inch and the other 1/4 inch.
Bob, Lynn and I towed out to the designated test area and ran it, oil temps now held steady at 220, but oil was blowing out of the timing cover seal.
We saw 87.7 downriver, 82.1 up while testing. We towed back to River forks park, Lynn and I caught a ride to look at the course with Paul Luhrs in Gary Weavers boat while Bob ran back to Roseburg to find us a timing cover seal and a dampner puller. Saw the course, Paul showed us a couple of good lines that will help tommorrow and we got to see the underside of the construction on the I-5 bridge south of Roseburg.
We went back over to Paul Bagshaw's shop and pulled the dampner, replaced the seal which was hard and not too good of shape, I siliconed the hell out of the cover/pan joint and we put it back together. Good to go!
On to the indoor boat show at Seven Feathers Casino. Pretty neat to get teched on carpet!
There are 20 boats pretty much ready to go, a couple are in the "We are hacking it together as we speak " stage.
#08 Gary Weaver & Gary's nephew, Budweiser
# 27 Scott Marshall, Makin Bakin - Won nicest boat award!
# 13 Merv George and Zeke Leinernger, Yellowhammer
# 16 Jess LaForest & Lynn Mouser, Cavefish Squared
# 07 Greg Boice, Gone in Seven Seconds ( gotta check that)
# 15 Ron Pabst, Footloose
# 09 Don Ruddick & Pete Nesbit, Mountain Honey
# 19 Mike Egbers & Eric Hamburg, missed catching the name.... oops
#155 Scott Adams,Sideways
#65 Sam Heath and Sam's Daughter, The Nameless One or maybe- Sam's Addiction
#309 Ryan Ringer and Grant Kudlac, Bohica
#70 Dean Saxon & John Nicklason, Adrenaline Rush
#188 Steve Hanlin and Steve Davis, White Lightning
#163 Duane & Gary Labrum, Tuff -n- Nuff
#187 Jerome Rector
#114 Gary & Bill Padgett, Xtreme Chaos
#169 Brodie Miller & Dwain Longfellow, Liquifire
#177 Seth Bogner, Exhibitionist
#182 Dave Provost and Darren Provost, Risky Business II
#277 Paul Bagshaw and Rob Soule, Unpredictable
John Burns took the squeegy thing away from me as I was putting our numbers on, he couldn't stand to see me hamfist the vinyl. They look really good now that he and Morgan put them on nice, much better than if I had done it!
Dave brought me my official Provost Race boat stickers and out them on. Man, they really make the look of the boat!
The Calcutta went well, this event appeared to better attended than the last few years.
Val and Del Ramsdell were there, nice to see them still following and coming to races! I am hoping to see them back in a boat one of these days.
Drivers meeting is at 7:30 am, I am hoping for less rain than today gave us.
Saturday - Racing
Well, I'll get my hard luck story out of the way first. We made it about 1/2 mile upriver with smoke billowing around us all the way. The smoke kept getting worse. The motor would not hold at full throttle, started loading down. Then it started missing. Oil pressure was good, temps were good but in the interests of saving whatever parts weren't wrecked, I parked it.
The other hard luck story is that the B-class Miller/Longfellow #144 Liquifire boat refused to run right off the trailer. They had been up most of the night finishing putting it together but it wasn't going to go. The pulled it out and kept working on it, were still trying when I limped back, but it wouldn't go. They had done a mad thrash to make it here also, invested a good week of long, long days.
Ron Pabst's SBFX #15 Footloose motor siezed on the way up. New boat, new racer, Ron is racing a KwikKraft that I used to own. Ron has been a crewman on the Unpredictable team for a few years and has been around racing, he wasn't awfully upset.
And let's not forget Don Ruddick and Pete Nesbitt's SBFX #09 Mountain Honey burn down just above Elk Island. I understand that there was also some excitement involved in the rescue.
On the first leg down, Scott Adams BBFX, #155 Sideways shoved a rod through the pan. Also, Greg Boices SBFX #07 motor flooded out, had to be towed in, float levels or stuck float. They were working on it and would make it back for the last up and down legs.
Since we were done, Lynn, Bob, Morgan and I drove to Elk Island to catch the second down leg. We missed the second up leg driving over.
Watching Paul Bagshaw A-class #277 Unpredictable and Dave Provost A-class #182A Risky Business II come burning into the corner was very impressive. Scary might be another good description of the speed these boats carried into this corner.
Gary and Bill Padgett B-class #114 Xtreme Chaos ran through fast and smooth, Gary and Duane Labrum B-class #163 Tuff-n-nuff also. Two quick smooth runs. I missed seeing Gary & Bill's spin out on their way up, and am hoping to track down some video if anyone got any- Bill would like to see it too!
Seth Bogner B-class #177 Exhibitionist, on what may be his last race, did a very quick run through too.
Jerome Rector B-class #187, racing an old style Kwik Kraft, had a motor that was dieing of the same thing ours died of. Dean Saxon BBFX #70 Adrenaline Rush, caught and passed him in the flat above the turn in at the tree on the rock.
Ryan Ringer, BBFX #309 Bohica took the far right channel around Elk Island instead of the normal left channel, and from standing on the bank it looked way faster then the usual run next to the tree. I know there are a few rocks over there, apparently Ryan knew exactly where they were. Ryan has navigated with Tim Harding over the last few years and apparently the driving style has rubbed off on him. Sam Heath BBFX #69 The Nameless Boat made a good clean run by the tree. His daughter, who is his navigator, was doing the yeah-yeah-go thing with her hands all the way through.
Merv George SBFX #13 Yellowhammer was doing his usual compentant job, turned in hard, a couple of hops and he was around the corner and gone.
Mike Egbers in SBFX #19 had a terrific crash, they took the far left channel around the left side of the tree on the rock, lost it and hit another tree. Bent the hell out of the front of their boat. Barked the tree up pretty good. A rescue boat parked on the east bank immediately took off to help them, but I saw no flags being waved. This was Mike and his navigator, Eric Hamburg's, first race. They are running a sweet little step-tech Mike Zoller's Performance Motorsports put together for them. It's just a shame that this had to happen their first race, they were doing well up to that point, holding their own. They got their bells rung, but continued on to the finish line with the front of the boat opened up like a salmon. I really hate that sound that a boat makes smacking into something, it's a bad sound.
Scott Marshall #27 Makin Bakin, came bombing around the corner, saw the sheriff boat and slowed, swerved off line. Scott said he about hit them anyway, a near thing that was.
Gary Weaver SJ #08 Budweiser came along in a while and also took that right hand line and made it look good.
We headed back to the pits at River Forks park.
Back at the pits, Mike Egbers was trying to hammer the nose of the boat back down, they had a roll of duct tape handy to patch it up, they were going to try and make the next leg. Eventually they decided not to try it after all.
This set of legs we decided to go try and find the riffle by the fairgrounds.
To get to the riffle at the fairgrounds, you take the fairgrounds exit, go under the freeway and then continue straight to the end of the street (Washington) and turn right into a gravel parking lot. You will end up behind the pits for the race track. The riffle is right in front of you.
It's about 100 yards long with a large brown knobby rock at the down river end. The rock is on the right side of the river on your way up. It's not were you would normally drive. From another year racing through here, there is another rock about a third of the way in, just to the right of the line were you want to go, but enough water this year I don't think you can hit it. The smoothest line takes you just to the right of some willow shoots. At the top of the riffle is a couple of rollers with one smooth spot that is angled off to the right. Big flat pool above.
We climbed down the bank then walked upriver a ways. Bob found an old lawn chair and got it open and the sand off, sat down.
Watching the two A-boats go through this riffle from the beach is an amazing experience. They do it so damn fast, it almost looks unreal. It's a little bit scary too, I was feeling like I was way too close to the action! You can hear them coming from a long ways off, the revs drop just a tiny bit as they get into the bottom of the riffle, then all of sudden they are there and carrying a LOT of speed, they just kind of muscle through the bumps and then they are gone just that quick. Amazing to watch.
Everybody went through on pretty much the same line, but all with minor differences. Some where obviously line-driving for the top of the riffle, some where kind of picking there way from slick to slick. The different boats reacted to the water as you would expect, the smaller boats being bounced about more than the bigger tunnels.
One of the most amazing sights was Ryan Ringers run in BBFX Bohica, #309. The best way I think to describe it was to say he ferociously attacked, from the bottom to the top. They went out the top standing almost straight up dragging about a foot of nozzle, water spraying in a vee past it, jabbing the engine up against the rev limiter. They flew upriver about 75 feet in that attitude, hit the water with the motor howling and shot off around the corner like they were being pulled by a big rubber band, the navigator pumping his fist in the air. The only way to have topped that run for WOW-FACTOR is if they had doused the engine with gas and lit it on fire at the bottom of the riffle!
The fastest/smoothest run was Paul and Rob's, #277 Unpredictable. Ryan gets the award for most aggressive/flamboyant, Merv George and Greg Boice share for nicest line, they ran technically perfect identical lines through here.
Morgan Heuberger got all these on tape and I will be trying to put pictures to this story. Also going to make some newer AWJA video from it.
I very much enjoyed watching the runs through here. It would have been better to actually run it, of course, but it was an educational experience. The last time Lynn and I ran this spot we had Raven and I somehow got a kick off the top, we went skidding on our nose for about fifty feet.
Sarah Sackett (Lynn's daughter) called right about the time Paul went by. Lynn was narrating the runs and holding the cell phone up so Sarah and Lynn's two grandsons, Brodie and Clayton could hear the boats go by. I could actually hear Sarah over the boats sometimes going "Woo Woo!" Bunch of boat nuts, they are.
My friend and crewchief, Bob McKellar had been gamely dragging around behind us all weekend, but he was pretty pooped from his meds by this time. When I glanced over at him sitting in that wrecked lawnchair he had found, he was just sitting back watching the boats and smiling. Morgan and Jason had their heads together between runs, talking about racing together again someday, I am sure. Jason's friend Dave, was kind of awed by the whole thing, never having been around this stuff before.
We came back to same spot Sunday for the second set of legs. We were on our way out of town. We had heard the boats go through town as we were in our motel room, drinking coffee & packing. We hurridly threw our stuff together and checked out so we could get to the fairgrounds to catch the next set of legs. It's a good spot to watch from, there were a few people on the high banks across the river, but not many on the fairgrounds side.
This sport is a real mind-blower to watch if you are in the right spot. I am not sure how many of you really remember that, I myself had kind of forgotten. I was impressed by how many spectators we saw all over the place as we drove through town.
The Roseburg race this year was a great success as it always is. Lot's of drama this year with new racers and all the teething problems being the first race of the year. We started with 20 boats, ended the weekend with quite a bit fewer.
Here is the finishes and times. You will notice that some of the finishes for the race do not match the US POINTS finishes. The difference is that the race position, for trophies and money, is by TOTAL TIME alone as it has always been, while US points are awarded by finish position PER LEG. One way you might look at this is that the system awards both hotrods AND finishers.
DRIVER BOAT DAY1 TIME DAY 2 TIME TOTAL TIME FINISH DAY1 US POINTS DAY2 US POINTS TOTAL US POINTS A-CLASS Paul Bagshaw 277 59:25 1:01:33 2:00:58 1st 400 400 800 1st Dave Provost 182A 1:01:04 1:25:01 2:26:05 2nd 300 100 400 2nd B-CLASS Steve Hanlin 188 1:24:51 1:02:29 2:27:20 2nd 204.17 400 604.17 1st Duane Labrum 163 1:20:37 1:05:27 2:26:04 1st 237.51 300 537.51 2nd Gary Padgett 114 1:24:07 1:42:56 3:07:03 4th 165.67 0 167.67 4th Seth Bogner 177 1:15:25 1:40:47 2:56:12 3rd 255.35 0 255.35 3rd Jerome Rector 187 1:35:17 1:42:56 3:18:13 5th 84.68 0 84.68 5th Brodie Miller 169 2:01:30 1:40:47 3:42:17 6th 0 0 0 BBFX Dean Saxon 70 1:11:26 1:26:22 2:37:48 3rd 344.85 266.68 611.53 1st Scott Adams 155 1:44:56 2:03:08 3:48:04 4th 37.50 0 37.50 4th Ryan Ringer 309 1:14:18 1:20:41 2:34:59 2nd 241.67 275 516.67 3rd Sam Heath 69 1:10:32 1:12:33 2:23:05 1st 291.67 308.34 600.01 2nd SBFX Merv George 13 1:17:29 1:16:28 2:33:57 1st 366.68 333.34 700.02 1st Jesse LaForest 16 DNS DNS DNS 0 0 0 Greg Boice 07 1:47:57 1:14:17 3:02:14 3rd 170.84 366.68 537.52 2nd Don Ruddick 09 2:09:09 2:18:32 4:27:41 6th 0 0 0 Mike Egberg 19 1:47:41 2:18:32 4:06:13 5th 140.67 0 140.67 5th Ron Papst 15 2:16:06 1:34:14 3:50:20 4th 0 169 169 4th Scott Marshall 27 1:24:05 1:24:07 2:48:12 2nd 275 225 500 3rd SJ CLASS Weaver SJ08 1:44:00 1:35:08 3:19:38