ABRA announces significant changes to Unlimited Hydroplane racing procedures, rules - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

ABRA announces significant changes to Unlimited Hydroplane racing procedures, rules

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Some major announcements were made at the ABRA owners meeting. Among the highlights:

  • NEW STARTING PROCEDURES
    ABRA announces new starting procedures. For 2009, lanes will be assigned for heats.

    In heat 1A and 1B, final qualifying order will determine the first choice of lanes. "We'll do the draw at each race," said ABRA's Sam Cole. "The top qualifier will have first choice of lane assignment, the second will get the next pick, etc."

    In Heat 2A and 2B, lane assignments will be based on reverse order from finish in the first set of heats. In other words, the winner of Heat 1A or 1B will pick last in Heat 2A or 2B.

    In Heat 3A and 3B, choices will be based on points earned in the first two heats with final qualifying order determining ties.

  • ONE MINUTE CLOCK
    ABRA has announced it will keep the one minute clock for 2009.

  • FUEL FLOW CHANGES
    They are also reducing fuel flow from 4.3 to 4.1 to help extend the life of equipment. No change to the N2.

  • ABRA ALIGNS WITH APBA
    "We have voted today to create a new allegiance with APBA," said Sam Cole. They are still working out details. "We would not be a class or category within APBA, but will be aligned with them which will allow us to qualify for the UIM designation."

  • SAM COLE STAYS ON AS CHAIRMAN
    "No layoffs at ABRA," said Sam Cole. There's still a staff of one. Sam was re-affirmed as Chairman of ABRA with Ken Muscatel as Asst. Chairman. "He declined," joked Sam, "but then accepted."

  • MIKE NOONAN NAMED CHIEF REFEREE
    Mike Noonan was retained as Chief Referee. Cole also said they expect referees to do "a better job of calling things in black and white."

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