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H1 Dave Villwock and U-96 Spirit of Qatar win Oryx Cup

2010 Oryx Cup UIM World Championship

Doha Bay, Qatar – November 18th-20th, 2010

For immediate release

Saturday, November 20th, 2010   

DAVE VILLWOCK AND U-96 SPIRIT OF QATAR SEAL

SENSATIONAL VICTORY IN THRILLING ORYX CUP 

  • Steve David clinches third successive H1 Unlimited National High Points’ title
  • Dave Villwock and J. Michael Kelly win heats 3A and 3B; Hopp disqualified in 3B
  • J. Michael Kelly and Steve David take victories in heats 4A and 4B

DOHA (Qatar): Dave Villwock and U-96 Spirit of Qatar claimed a sensational victory in the winner-takes-all Oryx Cup UIM World Championship, the final race heat of the 2010 H1 Unlimited Championship, in Doha Bay, Qatar, on Saturday.

Villwock started the five laps of the 3.22km course from fourth position, but surged through to storm into the lead on lap three, despite a brave challenge from defending champion J. Michael Kelly. Villwock’s 62nd career success moved him equal on race victories with the late Bill Muncey, the most successful racer in hydroplane history. Steve David claimed third place and Jeff Bernard was fourth.

At the helm of U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto, Florida-based David claimed his third successive H1 Unlimited National High Points’ title and the Martini & Rossi High Point Trophy by claiming second position in heat 3A and victory in 4B. “This has been a fantastic all-round team effort and a win dedicated to all the crew members who have worked on Miss Madison for the past 50 years,” enthused David.

Villwock cruised to victory in heat 3A, but the runner-up spot in heat 4A ruined his slim chance of pipping David and his Indiana-based team to the National High Points title.

Last year’s Oryx Cup winner, J. Michael Kelly, was beaten to the chequered flag by Greg Hopp in heat 3B, but the U-100 driver was alleged to have impeded Kelly and was disqualified from the results, handing victory in 3B to Kelly. The U-7 driver also prevailed in heat 4A, which was marred by jump-starts for J. W. Myers and Mike Webster.

“I would like to offer my congratulations to Dave Villwock on his win in the Oryx Cup and to Steve David for claiming the championship here in Qatar and to thank all our international visitors, race officials and staff at the QMSF for making the Oryx Cup such a successful event for the second year,” said His Excellency Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al-Thani, president of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation (QMSF), who had been welcomed back from his Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca by H1 president Sam Cole and all 10 H1 Unlimited drivers earlier in the day.

Heats 3A and 3B

Villwock headed into a titanic heat 3A clash with David, trailing his great rival by 566 points in the race to the National High Points title. Brian Perkins, Kip Brown and Mike Webster filled the outside lane positions in bright, sunny conditions on Doha Bay. It was imperative that the U-96 Spirit of Qatar driver was able to beat David and claw back 100 points in the overall standings.

David, maybe surprisingly, opted to run in lane two, but he had his own game plan and was content to sit back and watch Villwock head into the distance, take a commanding heat victory and reduce his National High Points’ lead to 466 points. David was never troubled in second position, with Brian Perkins and Mike Webster taking third and fourth when Kip Brown stalled, was unable to restart U-17 Our Gang Racing and was forced to watch the heat from a static position in the in-field. “It was a case of preserving the boat and trying to avoid what happened to U-96 on Friday,” said David, explaining his decision to run in lane two.

J. Michael Kelly was on pole position in the inside lane for heat 3B, with Jeff Bernard, Greg Hopp, J.W. Myers and Ken Muscatel on his outside. Hopp made a sensational start and managed to sneak along the outside and into the lead, as Bernard fell behind Myers and slotted into fourth place.

Hopp managed to fend off Kelly’s challenge through the next lap and, when Kelly got a little too close to U-100’s rooster tail and lost a few seconds, Hopp was able to hold on and take an excellent heat victory. Kelly finished second, Bernard managed to pass Myers to seal third and Muscatel rounded off the finishers in fifth position. But Hopp was disqualified for ‘washing down’ or impeding Kelly at turn three on lap two, pushing everyone up a place and handing the heat win and 400 points to Kelly.

Heats 4A and 4B

Kip Brown and U-17 were forced to withdraw from the afternoon’s racing with technical problems. Perkins, Myers, Villwock, Kelly and Webster lined up in a fascinating grid for heat 4A. Three boats made a dubious start and J.W. Myers held the early advantage, as Villwock became bogged down in heavy water and Kelly emerged as the closest challenger.

Kelly managed to squeeze ahead of Myers and pulled away over the next two laps, as Villwock overtook Myers to cross the finish line in second position, with Perkins and Webster running in fourth and fifth places. But Myers and Webster were adjudged to have jumped the start and were forced to run a one-lap penalty, promoting Perkins to third and demoting Myers to fourth.

In the absence of Kip Brown, Hopp, Muscatel, David and Bernard filled the starting positions for the all-important heat 4B. David knew that a heat win would seal the National High Points’ title and enable him to concentrate on winning the Oryx Cup for the first time. With the news that Villwock had only managed second place in heat 4A, David could still claim the title with second position.

Hopp was the fastest out of the starting blocks and managed to hold off David’s challenge through the first few turns and into lap two. But he lost power on the exit of turn one on lap two and was sidelined, as David took up the reins and cruised through to take an emphatic heat win and clinch the National High Points’ title. Bernard was a distant third and Muscatel struggled with a slowing boat to claim points for third position.

The Oryx Cup

The fastest six boats and a seventh trailer boat made the thrilling spectacle of the Oryx Cup final, with all eyes on the potential clash between Villwock, David and Kelly, the defending champion. Five laps were on the agenda and David had the inside line from Kelly, Bernard, Villwock, Myers, Perkins and Webster.

David held the lead through the opening turns, but came under fierce pressure from Kelly and relinquished his advantage as Villwock overhauled Bernard to snatch third. Myers was confirmed to have jump-started the race and was forced to run a penalty lap, as Kelly began to come under threat from Villwock, who had managed to pass David and snatch second position.

But there was no stopping the U-96 Spirit of Qatar driver and Villwock duly entered the history books by claiming his 62nd race win in emphatic style, with Kelly and David completing the podium places after a thrilling finale to the Oryx Cup.

Oryx Cup - UIM World Championship – H1 Unlimited Heats (Saturday)

3A

 

1.

U-96

Dave Villwock

Spirit of Qatar

400 points

2.

U-1

Steve David

Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison

300 points

3.

U-21

Brian Perkins

Go Fast, Turn Left Racing

225 points

4.

U-22

Mike Webster

Webster Racing/Great Scott!

169 points

 

U-17

Kip Brown

Our Gang Racing

DNS

3B

 

1.

U-7

J. Michael Kelly

Graham Trucking

400 points

2.

U-5

Jeff Bernard

Formulaboats.com

300 points

3.

U-37

J. W. Myers

Schumacher/Miss Peters & May

225 points

4.

U-25

Ken Muscatel

Superior Racing

169 points

 

U-100

Greg Hopp

Leland Unlimited

DSQ

4A

 

1.

U-7

J. Michael Kelly

Graham Trucking

400 points

2.

U-96

Dave Villwock

Spirit of Qatar

300 points

3.

U-21

Brian Perkins

Go Fast, Turn Left Racing

225 points

4.

U-37

J. W. Myers

Schumacher/Miss Peters & May

169 points

5.

U-22

Mike Webster

Webster Racing/Great Scott!

127 points

4B

 

1

U-1

Steve David

Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison

400 points

2

U-5

Jeff Bernard

Formulaboats.com

300 points

3.

U-25

Ken Muscatel

Superior Racing

225 points

 

U-100

Greg Hopp

Leland Unlimited

DNF

Oryx Cup

 

1.

U-96

Dave Villwock

Spirit of Qatar

400 points

2.

U-7

J. Michael Kelly

Graham Trucking

300 points

3.

U-1

Steve David

Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison

225 points

4

U-5

Jeff Bernard

Formulaboats.com

169 points, etc

Ends

For further information:

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

Or

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

www.qmsf.org

www.h1unlimited.com

Date issued: 20/11/2010

For further information or assistance please contact:

NDP Publicity Services
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Shropshire TF10 7EN United Kingdom

Tel/Fax: +44 (0) 1952 825001
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