SEATTLE 2009: The fastest qualifying lap on Friday was turned in - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

SEATTLE 2009: The fastest qualifying lap on Friday was turned in by the U-787, which isn't racing this weekend

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Seattle, WASH. - It was Chip Hanauer, driving the U-787 bio-fueled unlimited hydroplane that turned in the fastest lap times on Friday's qualifying and testing for the Chevrolet Cup.  Hanauer retired in 1999 and the U-787 is the U-16 Elam team's backup boat - neither are racing this year.

Not bad for a boat that's running on an assortment of bio fuels that sounds more suited to a salad than a fuel source:  85% Camelina, 14% Jatropha, and 1% algae.

"We got beat by a plant," said U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison driver Steve David.

"There is no performance difference between the kerosene that today's boats are using and the biofuel mixtures," said Hanaeur.  "I wouldn't know that it wasn't kerosene except for the fact that there is no kerosene odor."

The U-787 turned a lap time of 153.691.  But since the boat isn't racing, the top honors for speed went to the same two teams that have been at the top of list all season in qualifying speeds.

Dave Villwock in the U-16 Ellstrom E-Lam posted the top speed Friday in the first day of qualifying for the Chevrolet Cup at Seafair unlimited hydroplane race. Villwock averaged 152.484 mph for one lap around the two-mile oval course on Lake Washington.  Steve David in U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison qualified at 152.322 mph.

Greg Hopp turned in fast times in the U-100 Mirage Boats, finishing behind Jeff Bernard in the U-5

Returning to the circuit after a horrible accident in Madison sidelined him for the next two races, Jean Theoret looked comfortable and the U-37 Hoss Mortgage looked smooth.

Qualifying continues Saturday morning, with the first set of preliminary Chevrolet Cup heats set Saturday afternoon. Additional preliminary heats come Sunday, with the winner-take-all final heat Sunday afternoon.


U-16 Ellstrom Elam Plus Dave Villwock 152.484  
U-1 Oh Boy! Oberto Steve David 152.322
U-5 Jeff Bernard 147.359
U-100 Mirage Boats Greg Hopp 145.893
U-37 Hoss Mortgage Investors Jean Theoret 145.657
U-17 USNW Express Kip Brown 145.099
U-3 Grandview on the Lake Jimmy King 142.962
U-9 Jones Racing David Williams 136.529
U-48 Albert Lee Brian Perkins 135.399
U-22 Miss Airbag Mike Webster 131.365


U-7 Graham Trucking and U-25 Buffalo Federal Savings did not get out on the course on Friday.