Gar Wood Goes Over Century Mark in Three
By Rex Saffer
MIAMI BEACH, Fla. -- Gar Wood, millionaire speedboat racer, sent his Miss America IX skimming over placid waters here today at more than 100 miles an hour and laid claim to a new world speedboat record for both the statute and nautical miles.
He claimed the record for the statute mile with a speed of 101.154 miles an hour and an international record for the nautical mile with a speed of 102.256 miles an hour.
Odis A. Porter, American Automobile Association timer and representative of the American Powerboat Association, clocked Wood's runs which were made today on Indian Creek near the racer's winter home.
The first two-way run of the day over the statute-mile course was officially clocked for an average speed of 100.5 miles an hour, but will not be offered by Wood in his claim for world speedboat supremacy.
The 101.154 miles an hour mark, set shortly after noon over the statute-mile course, will, if accepted, supercede the 98.76 miles an hour world's record set last year at Lake Windemere, England, by the late Sir Henry O.D. Segrave, of England.
Wood made his run over the nautical course, he said, in case his claim for the mile record should not be accepted in all nations of the world.
At the conclusion of the day's racing, he sat in his home here and announced he planned to build a boat capable of 20 miles an hour greater speeds than those he established today.
"I will buy engines capable of 4,000 horsepower for the new boat," he said. "I may have to go to England to buy them, but I will do it if necessary. Segrave had engines of this power when he set his record last summer, and if American manufacturers do not supply them I will go to foreign manufacturers for them."
He said the time for construction of the new boat is as yet indefinite.
"With 2,000 more horsepower than the 2,200 in the Miss America IX, I can get 20 miles an hour more speed without difficulty. The whole thing is merely a matter of getting engines to do the work."
The sponsor of a long line of Miss America speed craft, took the latest of the name over the measured statute mile course five times today. Three of the runs for the statute mile were southbound, with the tide and two northbound. The first three runs constituted one attempt to better the Segrave record. The last two, giving him higher speed, were made as a separate attempt after Porter advised Wood the thirty-minute period allowed by association rules for the trial had elapsed.
(Reprinted from the Associated Press, March 20, 1931)
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