August 2018

by Jim Sharkey

For the past several years I have been watching at Tri-Cities an exhibition of the Atlas Van Lines (Hull #7700), known as the “Blue Blaster,” run against the Miss Budweiser (Hull #8012), also known as the “Juggernaut” or Griffon Bud.  I thought I would look up the races where these two boats raced against each other.  The more I thought about it, I started to wonder if most people will remember the boats correctly. I have broken this down into several parts:

                                  >> 1979, when the Atlas (#7700) ran against the first Griffin Bud (Hull #7912). 

                                >> 1980 and 1981, where the Atlas ran against the second Bud (#8012).

                                  >> 1982 is in two parts, the new Atlas (Hull #8200) with Chip Hanauer driving against

                                        the second Budweiser (#8012) with Dean Chenoweth, and Hanauer against Jim Kropfield

                                        in the Budweiser. 

                                  >> In 1983 it was just Hanauer verses Kropfield.

When I compare the boats, I am basing it on heats where both boats ran against each other and finished the heat. If a boat did not finish or did not start, the other boat scored better by default so I ignored these heats as to the boats going head to head.                                                                                                                                                                     Continued, click here...

Dustin Echols

Clint Newman conducted this interview in the pits at Madison, Indiana, on Sunday morning, July 8 of this year. Dustin Echols was about to compete in the final day of the Midwest Tube Mills Madison Regatta and, later that day, would win his first heat in unlimited competition.

Last year’s exhibition at Madison also featured four boats, but didn’t count toward the national points

      Despite the small field, the large Madison crowd was presented an exciting race that saw four different winners in preliminary heat action and a near-course record in qualifying.

      Rick Russell, CEO of sponsor Midwest Tube Mills, pledged $5,000 of his own money to any boat that bested Dave Villwock’s mark of 148.837 mph on the 2-mile Ohio River course. Andrew Tate came the closest, pulling a lap of 148.166 mph in the U-9 Auxier Marketing presents Delta Realtrac to claim his second top qualifying spot of the season.

                                                 Continued, click here....

Atlas Van Lines vs. Budweiser

At their peak, the two iconic race teams

competed side by side from 1979 to 1983.
Which team had the better of the other?

learning those as well as I can. With grand prixs, you need to baby them, get them up to temperature and make sure everything is just right before you go. With the turbines, you just go.                                                      Continued, click here...

The hometown team wins the Madison Regatta.

UNJ:  Dustin, tell us a little about yourself.

      Echols:  I’m originally from Duvall, Washington, and live in Sultan, Washington, right now. I’m 38 years old, married, and have a daughter, 11 years old. She’s also racing. Started racing outboards this year.

     I first heard your name when you were racing Scott Pierce’s grand-prix boat here in Madison. How was that experience?

     It was great. Scotty has been a long-time friend. We live close to each other, so it was a good fit. I was actually competing against him racing for Rick and Shawn Bridgeman for about nine years before that. It was fun racing for both of them.

     When I interviewed Scott last year, he said he wanted to help you get an unlimited ride and you got it.

     Scott was a big helper and a lot of people working on that boat helped me out also. It was nice to have their support.

     What was the biggest difference when you went from grandprix boats to unlimiteds?

     I’m a pretty mechanical guy, so I understand the automotive industry well. I’m a diesel mechanic by trade. The turbines are sort of an unknown for me. I’m

by David Campbell

A total of five boats made the trip to the Ohio river town of Madison, Indiana, July 7-8 for the 68th running of the Midwest Tube Mills Madison Regatta, which was won by Jimmy Shane in the hometown U-1 Miss Homestreet. The five-boat field marked the smallest Madison has seen for a points race since 1958 when Don Wilson drove the Miss U.S. I to victory against a four boat field.

“I’m just a diesel mechanic from Seattle, living his dream.”