1968 UIM World Championship
Lake Washington, Seattle, Washington, August 4, 1968

Hydroplane Handicap
John Owen, P.I. Sports Editor


History of Thrills, Spills


Gardner, Eagle Electric Miss Speed Record by Tick


Muncey Qualifies Miss U. S. High on Ladder


1968 Unlimited Hydroplane Roster


A Persistent Game


Miss U.S. Fastest Entry in 1B


Bardahl, Eagle Electric in Same Heat


Hydro Ladder


Hydroplane Handicap


Regatta Rules


Time the Hydroplanes


Bill Muncey Wins Hydro Title


Muncey Luck Changes for Better


Consistency Paid Off


Feverish Battle Waged Backstage in the Pits


Gardner Pushes Electric to Near-Record 120.267


‘Mom’s Going to be Upset’ But Wracked-Up Regas Won’t Retire


Muncey, Simon Celebrate Miss U.S. Victory


Patriotic Parable


Steady-Running U.S. Hydro Champ


Miss U.S. Wins World Championship Hydro Race


It's Diamonds For Miss Bardahl



The checkered hydro will get the checkered flag at the conclusion of racing on Lake Washington today, UNLESS Miss Bardahl blows an engine in the final heat.

That could happen. And if it does, the World Champion unlimited hydroplane should be Miss Eagle Electric.

But if you like to bet longshots, wager a six pack on Miss Budweiser.

And if none of these three hydros performs as advertised, send 25 cents in coin for an instruction sheet showing you how to convert today's P-I sports section into a novel paper sun hat.

The above predictions are based upon an exhaustive study of form sheets, extended conversations with drivers and mechanics, and a slight dizzy spell, brought on by either sunstroke or mal de mer. These calculations have resulted in The 1968 P-I Hydro Handicap, as follows:


Miss Bardahl


Bill Schumacher has started 12 heats this year, finished 10 heats and won nine of them. Thus, about the only thing that has beaten the Bardahl has been mechanical failure.

Eagle Electric


Except for structural failure in Wisconsin, Warner Gardner hasn't finished worse than second this year. A definite co-favorite.

Miss Budweiser


In four starts, the Bud has finished ninth, 11th, third and second. It may mean the boat is now as good as the driver, Bill Sterett.

Notre Dame


The Hibernian Hydro also getting better and better, but doesn't appear to have speed to run with the leaders.

My Gypsy


If the race proves to be mechanically devastating Tommy Fults' boat, as consistent as the Bremerton Ferry, could pull a surprise.

Miss U.S.


Bill Muncey and his crew have experience, unlimited backing and a record of futility. It can run with the best, but how far?



A safe boat, a consistent boat. Usually finishes safely and consistently in sixth or seventh place.

Harrah's Club


There is no reason why this boat shouldn't finish near top, but it seldom does. Recent hull change may help.

Atlas Van Lines


An unknown element. It'll probably be around at the end. Could finish higher than anyone expects.

Gale's Roostertail


Seattle is a nice place to visit this time of year.

Savair's Mist


Has finished every heat this year, usually at the back of the pack.

Parco O-Ring Miss


Fred Alter deserves better.

Meanwhile, Back in the Pits

"Ridiculous," is the way Mira Slovak describes the situation surrounding Jack Regas this week. Nobody, including Regas, seemed to know until late in the week whether Jack, or a replacement, would drive the Notre Dame Sunday. "Regas has more ability and experience than anybody out there," S1ovak says. "A driver has enough to worry about without something like this — without putting him in a position where he has to go out and prove something" . . . Slovak, recovering from near-fatal injuries suffered in a plane crash, becomes a television commentator today. Friday afternoon he "relaxed," by going flying with pilot-pal Ernest Gann

Bill Muncey isn't the only politician in the pits. Norm Evans, who hopes to return to racing next summer, is now campaigning for a seat on the Chelan County Commission . . . Early last week an APBA spokesman said a race on Lake Tahoe in September is officially "on." It isn't. The people from Reno, who should know, say the race will not be held .. Is Eagle Electric really faster in competition than Miss Bardahl? People around the Bardahl camp warn not to be misled by the final heat in Pasco. They claim Bardahl raced with a new engine, that the rings weren't properly seated, and that Billy Schumacher can run a whole lot faster than he showed then. This is one of the smallest fields of hydros for a Seattle race but APBA measurer Don Merz says it's probably the safest, best-built fleet of boats ever to appear here.

(Reprinted from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 4, 1968)

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