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Haugasmagi’s Happy Hunting Ground

For all but one of the overseas racers signing on to battle it out for the 2018 UIM OSY400 Hydroplane European Championship title, this is their first opportunity to see the two-pin race course laid out on the Oulton Broad.

The Slovakian racer Miroslav Bazinsky, who competed here at the 2007 World Championships, being the exception.

How much that will decide the outcome of who takes that title home with them will become more apparent on Sunday afternoon.

One of those racers though did get a ‘sneak’ preview of how to run the course when he watched the Thursday night club race from the spectator’s area.

Keeping a close eye on how Britain’s Wayne Moyse was setting up his Powat hull for the tight turns was the reigning European Champion Rasmus Haugasmagi.

You could say I have been here before, because I had a good look at the circuit two years ago.

On that occasion he was attending the wedding of former racer Luke Hugman, who lives locally.

I knew it was narrow but where we train near the boat factory is even narrower and that will certainly help me this weekend.

So, what did he learn from Thursday night?

I just have to race smart and if that means backing off to get around the turns safely then I will do just that.

With the OSY400 qualifying taking place mid afternoon on Saturday just how crucial does Haugasmagi see that thirty-minute session?

I know my hull is really quick off the start dock, so whatever the outcome I will remain fairly confident.

If you look back at the last six World Championships I have been beaten to pole position by Cezary Strumnik on five occasions and I still took all six titles home with me.

Lowestoft & Oulton Broad Motor Boat Club Commodore Peter Mantripp with the Chairman of the UIM Formula Committee, Giacomo Borgonovi at the 2018 UIM OSY400 Hydroplane European Championship.
Photo: Chris Davies

Another ‘former’ racer who is making a welcome return this weekend is Giacomo Borgonovi.

The popular Italian is here as UIM Commissioner for the weekend.

He, like Bazinsky, was here in 2007 for the World Championships, on that occasion he was the Manager of the Italian team that included Bacchiega, Ongari and Zilioli.

He’s no stranger to this type of racing having competed in a very similar class, OCN-500cc back in the 1985 Italian Championship.

I’m really looking forward to working with this very passionate club, this venue has superb potential to hold even more International Championships events soon.

Personally, I would like to see the start pontoon moved slightly further up the course, that way I think they could run eighteen boats here.

The first opportunity that the public will get to see all the racers in action will be on Saturday at the mid-day (12:00 noon) OSY400 Free Practice session.

That will be followed later by the thirty-minute qualifying session, with Heat One of the OSY400 European Championship taking place at 16:35 local time.

Image shows the reigning World & European Champion Rasmus Haugasmagi from Estonia checking out the course laid out on the Oulton Broad.

Photo: Chris Davies.

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