Dr. Ken Muscatel and Ron Jones, Jr. to debut new U-25 unlimited hydroplane in Seattle - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |


U-7, U-5, U-1 getting repair work done in Tukwila getting ready for Seafair.
PHOTOS: Lon Erickson

Dr. Ken Muscatel and Ron Jones, Jr. to debut new U-25 unlimited hydroplane in Seattle

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The new boat under construction just two months ago The new boat under construction just two months ago

When testing and qualifying for the 2009 Chevrolet Cup at Seafair begins on Friday, Dr. Ken Muscatel will have a virtually new race boat and a new partner.

Muscatel announced today that Ron Jones, Jr. has become his partner and team manager for Superior Racing.  Jones has been doing the extensive rebuild of Muscatel's U-25 in his shop in Pacific, Washington.  Now he'll be the man in charge of the boat, motors, crew and setup.

"Ron gives us a level of experience and expertise in things like the hull, propellers and gear boxes that we haven't had before," explained an enthusiastic Muscatel.  "JR is one of the most respected people in the sport when it comes to boat construction and tuning and has experience and success running a race team."

Jones owned and ran race teams in the early 90's, winning the 1991 Madison Regatta with Mark Evans driving a boat called the American Spirit.  In 1992,  Jones gave Dave Villwock his first opportunity to compete as an unlimited driver.  They won the San Diego race, Villwock's first,  that season with a boat sponsored by Coors Dry.

Jones, whose company, Strategic Composites, Inc. builds composite airplane parts as well as hydroplanes and boats for various applications,  said he considers the partnership a win-win situation, saying, "I had toyed with the idea of getting involved with a team on a more day to day basis, and this seemed like a really good opportunity."

Muscatel and Jones will combine resources and assets, and will have a well stocked race team with six turbine engines, spare truck and other parts.  Jones assumes his new role immediately and will be in charge when the team arrives in the Stan Sayres pits for the start of Seafair activity.  Muscatel will continue as the team's driver.

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