After several months of negotiating, Grand Prix America Hydroplane Racing Series and Seattle’s Seafair have announced that they have inked a three-year agreement where Seafair will host North America’s premier supercharged piston-powered hydroplanes on Lake Washington.
The agreement kicks off in 2020 during Seafair Weekend held in Seattle, July 31-August 2, and will run through 2022.
The automotive class powerboats produce speeds of upwards of 160 m.p.h. and have not competed at Seafair’s summer festival since 2017 when Greg Hopp won the race. 2020 marks Seafair’s 70th year of racing powerboats on the lake.
Grand Prix America Hydroplane Series president, Dean Rojas, who brings his marketing expertise from the Major League Fishing where he is a record-breaking fisherman, spearheaded the multi-year agreement for an extended stay in the Seattle area market.
“This is great news for our unbelievably supportive hydroplane fans, sponsors, and of course the Seafair organization.” Rojas said, “It has been two years since automotive powered hydroplanes raced on Lake Washington and we can’t wait to bring piston-powered hydroplane racing back to our fans in the Seattle area.”
Rojas continued, “The three-year agreement ensures fans will be able to watch and cheer on their favorite piston-type hydroplane in the Pacific Northwest region for years to come. This is a great way to begin the decade!”
The agreement helps both organizations create a solid foundation to move the sport forward allowing all involved to properly market the reimagined sport.
“Seafair is thrilled to ink a three-year deal with such a professional organization as they charge forward in a new, and exciting direction,” stated Eric Corning, president and CEO of Seafair. “Race fans will love it even more as the group promises to add more thunder to Lake Washington during Seafair Weekend!”
Rojas said, the agreement gives race teams the ability to entertain new marketing partners and assures structure for multi-year sponsorships.
Eight to ten Grand Prix America hydroplanes are expected to compete at this year’s Seafair festival.
Grand Prix America Hydroplane Racing Series is excited to continue their work to solidify other host cities with multi-year agreements and are working to expand into new markets.
Grand Prix America Hydroplane Racing Series is the premier supercharged automotive-powered race boat racing series in North America.
Skimming across the top of the water at top speeds upwards of 160 m.p.h.; Grand Prix America Hydroplanes average 26-feet in length, 12-feet wide, each weighing over one ton.
Tossing beautiful water roostertails from behind each boat by their powerful 1,600 horsepower engines, these hydroplanes create a thundering noise and fast speeds for exciting family entertainment experiences on lakes, rivers, and bays throughout the United States.
Seafair is a ten-week long festival featuring over 30 sanctioned events that reach more than two million people.
It’s about building community, creating memories, and providing affordable fun.
The festival remains the fabric of the community and is made possible with the help of nearly 2,000 volunteers.
The annual summer celebration, now in its 71st year of operation concludes each year with Seafair weekend that includes hydroplane races and over-the-water airshow.