By John Nicholls
The Tauranga set up is coming along nicely with a container for a HQ and a paved drivers stand with a fine shingle beach for a launch area.
Morning came around to quickly and we were off to the lake, after finding a very average Chinese pastry shop for breakfast.
First up were the electric boats,( Two rounds for each class) the weather was almost drizzle but the water was reasonably flat.
N2 for Saturday was first which was won by Jason, followed by P which was won by Chris , Q was a demonstration type race with the boats starting to show some speed and then 1/8 FE with Merv taking out two heat wins.
Next up was the Sport 45s which in the end was down to two boat heats. Johns fuel tank, the famous mouth wash bottle had a problem, the lid/stopper decide to come loose and not give a constant fuel delivery, Steve was also having problems but when the heats started it was all on.
The racing however was very close with Steve hugging the buoys and making John go the long way to get round him. There was a lot of race tactics going on and everyone enjoyed the tussle. Both boats were having tuning problems and they both seamed to cough at the same time.
It all came down to the start with both competitors trying all the tricks in the book to get an edge. One heat both jumped the start; they were nose to nose but over the line by about half a meter.
Next up was petrol scale, John was out with steering problems. The remaining boats looking the part but unable to catch Matt with a notable speed advantage. To finish the day off was semi scale offshore Matt took off and ran until his fuel tank ran dry with a couple of minutes to go. Steve had tuning problems.
After packing up it was off to the showers and then down to a pub for a meal and a few stories. Then back to the motel. It should be noted that there was some very loud snoring that seemed to be evenly shared amongst the occupants of room 3.
Can you see me?
The morning we were speared the breakfast of the day before as the shop was not open so some opted for a Mac-breakfast. The day was different from Saturday.
We were all aware that although it was very overcast we all had some sun burn so started the day with a coating of sunscreen. It was windy and the lake had more than a ripple on it.
All the smaller hull length FE classes were on a mission to finish the heats. They were jumping from wave top to wave top, sometimes with a couple of seconds hang time. The results speak for themselves.
1/8th FE scale was more manageable in the chop with the longer hull length but for various reasons not many finished, Phil decided to try a short cut through a buoy which turned out to be not the right move as the buoys are very solid.
1/8th scale nitro was also a survival type of racing with a few brave souls opening the throttle. There were a few submarine antics and a couple of roll-overs, a few prop walking/air time runs but amazingly no blowovers. Steve took out the day with some very controlled driving.
By now the wind had changed and as the scales went away the water calmed down. So out went the offshore boats, Matt wound his way around at ¾ throttle with Steve being lapped regularly about 5 minutes from the end Steve got bored and “missed” a few buoys (about half a lap). Brian got his big hull moving and it is the first time I have seen an offshore (deep vee) propwalk the entire length of the back straight and almost ready to blow over.
The sausages were great and thanks to the cooks there were also onions (an essential part of any BBQ)
Phil managed to take on a buoy or two over the weekend and unfortunately has some repair work to do.
Merv and Chris ran the first ever heat racing in Q Scale Hydro (FE)
Jason has again added to his collection of misshaped engine pieces and his prop and shaft are at the bottom of the lake
Chris found out the Zenoah’s like to have bearings that are not seized up.
John is looking for a new mouth wash fuel bottle, some bolts to hold the CMB45 in the hull (1 remaining after the final) and some new o rings for the sport 45 carb.
It is interesting to note that only Chris in N2, P & Q finished all electric heats on both days and John in the Sp 45.
End of day prize giving and we were off for the long drive back home. The general consensus was that it was a good weekend, pity the wind was there but it was the same all over the .country.
Don’t forget the next round of SUHA in May at Auckland.
(All Photos by Craig Dawson & Merv Sowden)
Some Videos from the Weekend (Remember to set the video to HD)