Florida is known for it's amazing beaches and waterfront lifestyle. Millions of people from all over the world travel to the state each year to enjoy the amazing weather that has labeled us as "the sunshine state." Next weekend, Super Boat International teams, which have raced all season in preparation for the final race in the National Points race competition, arrive in the Gulf Coast of Florida for the 5th Annual Clearwater Bright House Super Boat Championship event. This is the 7th race of the offshore race season and, with a very tight points race, the National Champion will be crowned Sunday afternoon.
“There has been some great racing all season and, when we come to Clearwater, everyone is ready to put on a great show,” comments Super Boat International President, John Carbonell. “Frank Chivas, Brian Aungst, and the entire Clearwater team along with their media partners really do a great job of promoting the race. The proof is seeing 5,000 spectator boats lining our course and fans all along the beaches. Getting good support is necessary so we can put on a great race and have a good showing for our fans. I know our teams are ready to race, so it will be a fun-filled exciting weekend,” comments Carbonell.
Teams will start to arrive on Thursday, September 26, in Coachman Park on Drew Street and set up their displays, boats and equipment. Fans will have the opportunity to see their favorite teams up-close. There are no special credentials needed for admittance to Baystar Race Village. Fans have full access to the pit area and are encouraged to get autographs from their favorite drivers and throttlemen. Friday, September 28, race village opens at 10:00 a.m. Later in the afternoon, fans will be treated to the “Blast Friday” boat parade and block party on Cleveland Street from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Saturday, teams will start testing at 12:00 and will have to be craned out of the water by 5:00 p.m. Fans can enjoy food and drink all day … and from 7:30 p.m. until 10:30 p.m., they can enjoy the live entertainment in Baystar Race Village. Sunday, September 30, races are scheduled for 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. with the awards ceremony scheduled for 4:30 p.m. in race village… everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend.
Fans can expect the biggest and fastest boats to take to the waters of Clearwater Beach. This season teams, STIHL, WHM, JD Byrider, Spirit of Qatar, and Red Hot Racing to name a few, have put on a great display of competition. We have seen lead changes back and forth from lap to lap in many classes and teams have been deck to deck all year. This year many of the racers have seen bumpy conditions from race to race, so it has been a true offshore season. Years past many of the racers saw flat conditions from race to race, but this year, it has changed. And, as for the upcoming World Championships in November, racing conditions in Key West are always unpredictable.
Lucas Oil / MAV TV, one of the fan favorites in the Super Boat Extreme class, should be pumped and ready to do battle for a National Title. The Extreme class has become very popular since the inclusion of boats of various horsepower, lengths and styles. They have been combined to run against each other with the only regulation… they cannot exceed 117 mph. If they breakout over this speed, they are penalized. This has allowed Super Boat to reduce the number of classes, while at the same time, improving the competitiveness of the teams in various classes.
With the broadcast area so close to the pits and the racecourse, the series is encouraging racers to be a guest on the livestream show when they are not racing. They have had many racers as guests on the show and they always add an interesting twist to the livestream. So, if you are the number one Super Boat fan and want to be on the show, give them a call and they'’ll see what we can do. If you can’t make the race, tune in online and see what is in store for the spectacular event coming up in Clearwater.
Thursday • September 26, 20135:30 pm Patrol Boat Meeting: Clearwater Community Sailing Center – 1001 Gulf Blvd.
Friday • September 27, 20139:00 am-5:00 pmRegistration: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park 301 Drew St.9:00 am-5:00 pmInspection: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park9:00 am-10:00pmPowerboats Dry Pits: Meet the Racers – Baystar Race Village11:00am-5:00 pmPress Credentials: Baystar Race village – Coachman Park5:30 pm-10:30 pmBaystar Race Village VIP Party - Harbor Marina Promenade - Meet and Great Who's in the Driver Seat Cleveland St. District - Boats on display - Downtown Cleveland St.
Saturday • September 28, 20138:30 am Mandatory Drivers Meeting: Baystar Race Village - Coachman Park9:00 am-10:00 pmPowerboats in Dry Pits: Meet the Racers – Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park10:00am-5:00 pmInspection: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park10:00am-5:00 pmRegistration: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park11:00am-5:00 pmPress Credentials: Coachman Park12:00pm-5:00pmLaunching - Seminole Boat Ramp12:00pm-5:00 pmTesting: As per the SBIP Rulebook7:00 pm-10:30 pmBright House Star Pectacular- Coachman Park Live Bands10:00pm-3:00 amShepard’s VIP Party - Shepard's Beach Resort
Sunday • September 29, 2013 - Race Day7:30am-8:30 amPhysicals: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park8:00am-9:00 amPress Credentials: Baystar Race Village – Coachman Park8:00am-4:00 pmLaunching: Seminole Boat Ramp8:30am- Mandatory Drivers Meeting: Baystar Race Village –Coachman Park9:00am-4:00 pmPowerboats in Dry Pits: Baystar Race Village Coachman Park11:45am Boats of 1st Race: Parade to Mill Area12:00pm Start of 1st Race: Clearwater Beach1:45 pm Boats of 2nd Race: Parade to Mill Area2:00 pm Start of 2nd Race: Clearwater Beach4:30 pm Awards Presentation: Baystar Race Village Coachman Park
If you’re on the beach, you can watch and listen to it on your smartphone. On the Livestream page, listen to the race, see the interviews, chat live and watch all the action as it happens.
Super Boat International has seen increased viewership by fans, families, and other racers tuning in and watching the events live on livestream. The 2013 season starts with the previous year’s World Championship in November 2012. Since last year’s Key West World Championship to date, the online coverage has seen significant increases in online viewing. With well over a million page views on Superboat.com, coverage has been seen in 181 countries around the globe.
Be sure to subscribe to the West Palm Beach Motorsports Examiner, and keep track of your favorite racers. If you're a motorsports fan, and know of an event, team, or person you'd like to see profiled, please let me know. Also, be sure to follow me on twitter, and read my articles about local getaways,HOAs,elections, and restaurants.