1973 UIM World Championship
Should Pak Have Been Disqualified?
The Pride of Pay’n Pak’s Seafair victory on rain-drenched Lake Washington yesterday carried international, national and local overtones . . . and one murmur of protest.
Unlimited referee Bill Newton last night revealed a possible rules violation — one which might have disqualified the Pak — had gone unreported to Newton.
Newton said the outcome of the race, with the Pak barely surviving a late charge by Miss Budweiser at the wire in the final heat, will not be changed.
Newton said, though, as a result of the incident, he has suspended indefinitely assistant referee Arnold Green of Seattle.
Newton said four different course referees reported to Tom Winter, operating the telephone unit on the official barge, that the Pay ’n Pak had violated the unlimited right of way rule on the second lap of the final heat.
Newton said Green received the reports from Winter but didn’t pass them along to Newton. Green told him he did not feel the reports to be serious enough to relay to Newton and therefore he disregarded them, Newton went on.
On the north turn of the second lap, the Pak, leading the Budweiser, cut close to the turn buoys and forced the Bud to go through his wake.
Bud driver Dean Chenoweth offered no protest of the incident when he talked to reporters at length following the race.
Newton said the race finish is final once the checkered flag goes down but said he "feels strong sympathy for all parties involved."
Green is being suspended, Newton said, "not because of any lack of confidence in him but to reinforce the concept that the assistant referee must report all transmissions from course referees to him at once."
Two weeks ago at the Gold Cup in Tri-Cities, there had been reports of a Pak lane-change violation but the boat fell out of the race with propeller problems. Newton said later he hadn’t learned of the course judge’s report until after the heat ended.
The Pak won the world championship, took the national point lead and captured the hearts of soggy Seafair fans.
Victory in the final heat gave the Seattle-based Pak the top prize in the $50,000 Seafair World Championship Regatta and it was a popular win here. The drizzle, which never let up all afternoon, sent the vast majority of the fans who arrived for the noon start scurrying for cover before the final heat.
The win here boosted the Pak into a 350-point lead over Budweiser in the national point standings.
The Pak-Bud rivalry totally dominated the action of an otherwise lackluster program of racing, Chenoweth and Remund played a hydro version of Me and My Shadow for three heats and the Pak pilot came out on top twice, including the critical finale.
The deck-to-deck duel of the Pak and Bud in heat 1-C went five laps, wire to wire — one of the finest races ever seen here, and the fastest anywhere.
Chenoweth was clocked in a scorching 122.504 miles per hour for the 15-mile heat. Yet Remund’s third lap, 124.424 mph, was the fastest single turn of the course and also smashed the world record.
Yet the co-favorites had their anxious moments, too.
Just as he crossed the finish line in 1-C, the Pak settled into the water with what was later diagnosed as a broken shaft. The Pak’s best prop went to the bottom of the lake.
In their second clash, the Bud threw a rod, flames came spewing from the stacks and the boat stopped nearing the end of the third lap.
But the Pak crew borrowed a propeller from the U-95 crew and the Budweiser gang put in a new engine going into the final.
Both moves were decisive in the final outcome. The borrowed prop worked perfectly while the engine changeover in the Bud left the nitrous system functioning only spasmodically.
"I hit the nitro button coming out of the first turn and nothing happened," Chenoweth said later. "It worked on the second and third laps but not on the fourth or fifth." The Bud driver still figured he’d come close in the belated charge at the finish.
"I thought possibly we might have got him," he grinned.
For Pak owner Dave Heerensperger, who watched in frustration as his boat failed to finish a heat a year ago here, it was a satisfying win.
"After last year this is fantastic," he said. "It looked like Mickey was losing power at the end there. I thought Bud might catch him."
Remund explained later that the new prop caused the boat to ride slightly different, "I had to concentrate on keeping the nose up," he explained.
There was a drizzle when the first heat of the afternoon got under way 15 minutes late — thanks to the bad visibility from the haze. It was a slow-poke heat and the race matched the caliber of boats. George Henley in the cabover Red Man II led for two laps, then fizzled. So did Miss U.S.
That left it open to Bob Gilliam’s Valu-Mart with Ms. Greenfield Galleries second. The others didn’t even start.
Bill Muncey‘s Atlas breezed to a no-contest win in 1-B as the crowd yawned again.
All was forgiven, though, in 1-C. In the charge to the starting line, Budweiser got the inside lane with Pak running on the adjacent track. Coming out of the first turn the Bud and Pak were deck to deck and it was that way for five torrid laps.
The Pak took the lead coming out of the north turn a couple of times, leading at the end of laps No. 2 and No. 3. The Bud regained command each time, though, coming out of the south turn and at the end of the fourth lap held a five-length lead.
Chenoweth never let up and won as both broke the 15-mile heat record of 116.079 m.p.h. set by the late Ron Musson in Miss Bardahl in 1965. The Pak’s 45-mile race average of 117 m.p.h. plus also broke a Bardahl record.
Back to the slowpokes for 2-A, Ms. Greenfield was the lone finisher — thus the Chuck Hickling boat made it to the finals having not beaten a single hydro in two heats. Muncey coasted again in 2-B and Jim McCormick’s Red Man also advanced to the final.
When Bud and the Pak got together again in 2-C, Chenoweth had the lead for almost three laps when the Bud’s engine broke.
"All of a sudden it let go with a loud explosion," Chenoweth said later. "I shut off both fuel pumps and shut off all the fuel in the carburetor. I thought it would burn itself out. I didn’t want to make a big mess with the fire extinguisher."
Heerensperger looked on that mishap as something of an omen.
"Maybe we’re going to get a break or two," he said. "We were lucky. We backed into that one."
The mortality rate, by the way, was one of the worst ever here with only 20 of a possible 34 finishers making it across the line. Five of the 14 boats went pointless.
HEAT 1-A:Valu-Mart, Bob Gilliam, 92.276 mph; Ms. Greenfield Galleries, Chuck Hickling, 89.315; Red Man II, George Henley, DNF (did not finish); Miss U.S., Tom D’Eath, DNF; Lincoln Thrift, Jack Brown, DNS (did not start).
HEAT 1-B: Atlas Van Lines, Bill Muncey, 108.390; Red Man I, Jim McCormick, 100.596; Mr. Fabricator, Tom Kaufman, 91.216; Notre Dame, Ron Larsen, DNF; Shakey’s Special, Tom Martin, DNF.
HEAT 1-C: Miss Budweiser, Dean Chenoweth, 122.504; Pay ‘n Pak, Mickey Remund, 120.697; Pizza Pete, Fred Alter, 104.854; Miss Madison, Torn Sheehy, 98.094.
2-A: Ms. Greenfield Galleries, declared winner after four laps when other boats went dead in water, no official speed.
2-B: Atlas Van Lines, 109.979; Red Man I, 100.821; Mr. Fabricator, 84.007; Notre Dame, DNS; Shakey’s Special, DNS.
2-C: Pay ‘n Pak, 114.407; Pizza Pete, 106.509; Miss Budweiser, DNF; Miss Madison, DNF.
CHAMPIONSHIP HEAT: Pay ‘n Pak, 117.238, Miss Budweiser, 117.086; Atlas Van Lines, 107.185; Pizza Pete, 9a.325; Ms. Greenfield Galleries, 87.662; Red Man I, DNF.
SEAFAIR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS — Pay ‘n Pak, 1300; Atlas Van Lines, 938; Miss Budweiser, 850; Pizza Pete, 759; Ms. Greenfield Galleries, 585; Red Man I, 450; Mr. Fabricator, 338, Valu-Mart, 225; Miss Madison, 169.
NATIONAL HIGH POINT STANDINGS (to date) — 1. Pay ‘n Pak, 7438; 2. Miss Budweiser, 7088; 3. Atlas Van Lines, 4838; 4. Red Man I, 4634; 5. Pizza Pete, 3979; 6. Lincoln Thrift, 3421; 7. Miss Madison, 2811; 8. Mr. Fabricator, 2196; 9. Valu-Mart, 1804; 10. Miss U.S., 1544; 11. Notre Dame, 1463; 12. Ms. Greenfield Galleries, 712; 13. Shakey’s Special, 338; 14. Valu-Mart II, 225.
(Reprinted from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 6, 1973)
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