MADISON 2008: Exit pin timing rule causing some confusion - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

MADISON 2008: Exit pin timing rule causing some confusion

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MADISON, Ind. - A new racing rule for the Madison course this year caused confusion and impacted racing on Sunday.

The rule is that you can't go past the exit pin of turn one before the 1:00 minute mark prior to the start.  If you do, you need to circle back and hit it again.  This was announced at the Sunday morning driver's meeting and met with some puzzled looks.

The rule meant boats had to hit the start/finish line hard, averaging nearly 98 mph from the exit pin of turn one to the start line to hit it right on.

With debris on the river, there was not much chance for drivers to get their boats out on the water and do timing runs.  "It's left a lot of people confused out there," said Steve David, U-6 Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison driver.

In Heat 1B, David Bryant in the U-10 Ahern Rentals timed it perfectly.  But he was the only one.  "We hit the start," said Bryant.  "Nobody else did.  We hit our marks and everybody else was a little off." 

Being a "little off" meant all Bryant had to do was take the boat on a nice 3-lap run, hold it together, and he had an easy win.

The new rules, and the delays, affected the U-37 Beacon Plumbing team.  Jean Theoret hit the exit pin early in Heat 1B and had to circle back through the infield.  He never recovered. 

"It left everybody confused.  I was pretty late with the start," said U-50 Spirit of the Navy driver Brian Perkins.