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Three Rum Runners aim to set speed records

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Three teams will be aiming to set speed records this weekend in the latest Ocean Cup event.

The attempts will be held on Saturday over a UIM and APBA approved course starting and finishing at the Huntington Beach Pier in Southern California and racing around Catalina Island, an open water course of 112 miles.

Nigel Hook and Jay Johnson will be running their Ocke Mannerfelt designed hull, Lucas Oil powered by twin Mercury 1350/1550 engines, will be driver Jay Johnson.

Entered in the 30-foot UIM category is another Mannerfelt design, a 24′ Bat Boat with an inboard Ilmor MV8 570 engine by Reindl Powerboats called Early Detection, which will be crewed by Leigh Ann Bauman and owner/throttleman Chris Reindl.

Nigel Hook explained about the third entry:

It’s a big, diesel powered 48-foot Apisa that I raced with owner Lance Ware to set the first Ocean Cup record seven years ago for the 458-mile stretch from San Francisco to Long Beach.

Although it doesn’t have a great top speed this is an endurance event and we all know the fable of the tortoise and the hare!

The first recorded US offshore race in 1911 was the 79-mile ‘Catalina Island Challenge’ and in 1968 legendary racer Bob Nordskog dubbed it ‘The Rum Run’ commemorating an era when fast boats transported liquor from offshore islands to ports in Southern California.

Erik Nordskog, Bob’s grandson, has the original Rum Run trophy and will be commentating on the event.

It’s great to see this offshore race making a comeback on the West Coast with the boats going around Catalina Island.

I’m excited to be representing the Nordskog family and being part of the Ocean Cup team to help bring back the amazing history of the race my grandfather conceived in the 1960s.

The schedule for this weekend will see the teams arrive on Thursday, with Friday being devoted to registration, inspections, the safety briefing and distribution of tracking equipment.

The race will start at 8.00am on Saturday.

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