U-16 Ellstrom's Elam Plus to be featured on Discovery Channel - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

U-16 Ellstrom's Elam Plus to be featured on Discovery Channel

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SEATTLE, Wash. - U-16's Erick Ellstrom reports that the team just finished up filming yet another TV bit with the Discovery Channel.

This time, the program featured the famous "flip and win" in the Tri-Cities from 2006.

Dave Villwock, aboard the U-1 Ellstrom's Elam Plus in Heat 2A, flipped the boat and did a full 360 before crashing back down to the water.  The boat suffered serious damage, but the crew on the shore did amazing work and pieced it back together.  Not only did the boat race again that day, but Villwock and the U-16 won the Atomic Cup (as it was called that year).

Some good publicity for the sport!  It seems someone at the Discovery Channel likes the sport of Unlimited Hydroplane racing.  It's the 4th time the Ellstrom team has been featured in just the past two years.

No word yet on a broadcast date, but we'll pass it on when it happens.

Here's how U-1 driver Dave Villwock saw it in his words back in 2006:  "What happened was a lot of wind out there.  Boat was thundering along and everything was fine.  I wanted to make sure I got the boat down.  I saw a squall coming.  I was being pretty aggressive planting the boat, just at the wrong time."

"When the boat came down, I hit a big wave, a squall," Villwock continued.  "It wouldn't come back.  It got upside down."

"I was OK, so I jumped out and started surveying the boat.   I radio'd back to the crew 'Get out the canard, get out the wing.  Tools, glue, hardware.'  By the time the boat came in they were ready to get after it."

The crew did.  Villwock and the U-1 made it back for the finals and won the Tri-Cities 2006 trophy.