Fans get a chance to watch the U-17 Miss Red Dot unlimited hydroplane being built - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Fans get a chance to watch the U-17 Miss Red Dot unlimited hydroplane being built

KENNEWICK, Wash. - Nate Brown and the Our Gang Racing team made it into the pits Saturday morning, but they were nowhere near ready to race.  The hull looked great, with a bright red, white and blue color scheme and a very unique air intake design.

But there was a lot of work left to be done, including putting an engine inside the hull for the very first time.

"We're here," said Nate Brown.  "There's still a lot of work to be done."  The work continued while other unlimited hydroplanes were doing qualifying and timing runs, but as the day wore on, it was obvious they weren't going to make it.

Still, Brown was optimistic about the brand new boat's future.  "Not today, but hopefully Seattle," he said.  Brown said he wanted to bring the boat to show everyone it's real... and the team because most of the crew has never worked a boat race before.  It seemed smart to let them get the feel for the pace and energy of the weekend.

If you look at the boat, you'll notice right away it's got a different design.  While structurally similar to the Budweiser hulls, the new U-6 and U-21, it's got a distinctively different air intake on top of the cockpit.  "Wanted to try something different," said Brown.

The U-37 Beacon Plumbing tried a somewhat similar shape in test runs earlier this year, only to see it collapse under the pressure.  The U-17 design looks much studier.

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