H1 Dave Villwock and U-96 miss out on Columbia Cup victory

Lamb Weston Columbia Cup
Round 3, Kennewick, Washington State, USA

For immediate release
Monday, July 26th, 2010

  •     Steve David seals Columbia Cup in Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison
  •     Villwock and U-96 Spirit of Qatar win heats 1B, 2B and 3B

KENNEWICK (USA): Dave Villwock missed out on a potential victory in the Lamb Weston Columbia Cup, round three of the 2010 H1 Unlimited Championship, on the Columbia River at Kennewick in Washington State on Sunday afternoon.

The driver of U-96 Spirit of Qatar was handed a final turn penalty by H1 race officials and this handed victory to his arch rival Steve David in Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison. Villwock had led the final heat from the start to the finish but, as he crossed the finish line, H1 officials were announcing the penalty had been called on the apparent winner.

Officials ruled that Villwock did not leave enough room for David in the U-1 boat to his inside as the two came through the final turn. The one-lap penalty handed Steve David a third straight Columbia Cup win and demoted Villwock to ‘fifth’ position, although he amassed the second-highest number of points over race weekend.

“I was having trouble with the throttle and I knew Steve had taken away the overlap, so I was trying to leave him room,” said Villwock. “They told me on the radio there was a dead boat in lane two or three and another one ahead of us moving to the outside. I tried to get us through all that with the low sun in our eyes and I thought I left room. The referee didn’t think so.”

The penalty for the U-96 Spirit of Qatar driver moved J. Michael Kelly up into second position and Jeff Bernard finished third. Steve David now has a 370-point lead over Villwock in the National High Points Championship. J. Michael Kelly is third, 694 points behind the leader.

U-96 Spirit of Qatar is a new sponsorship programme instigated by His Excellency Sheikh Hassan Bin Jabor Al-Thani, President of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF), which will host the final round of the H1 Unlimited Championship in November.

Dave Villwock and U-96 Spirit of Qatar topped the list of qualifiers on the Columbia River on Friday afternoon in ideal wind and water conditions. Villwock recorded an average speed of 161.928 mph. “So far so good,” said the U-96 driver. “I think we had a good set-up for this race course.” Arch rival and defending Columbia Cup champion Steve David finished second in qualifying.

David and Villwock won Saturday’s preliminaries and were duly drawn into separate sections of the heats. Villwock and U-96 Spirit of Qatar led heat 1B from start to finish, after the race ended prematurely when Ken Muscatel spun U-25 Superior Racing in the first turn of the final lap and the race was stopped with Villwock being declared the winner. Villwock also won heat 2B from J. Michael Kelly and heat 3B from Jeff Bernard.

Sheikh Hassan is expected to join Villwock and the rest of the H1 Unlimited fleet at the Albert Lee Cup at Seafair on Seattle's Lake Washington on August 6-8.

For further information:
Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, Mobile: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: ndppublicity@googlemail.com and www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases).


Steve Montgomery, H1 Unlimited Media Officer, Tel: + 1 206 618 8382, E-mail: Steve@H1Unlimited.com


Date issued: 26/07/2010

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