Lake McSwain race
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Lake McSwain race

  1. #1
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    Default Lake McSwain race

    We were off from our car racing this weekend and decided to see what we were about to get ourselves involved in and well, what an utter joke it turned out to be. Although spectator entry fees were refunded, it was very sad to see the mishandling of this race. We got there at 9:00am (as spectators) and sat around for 3 1/2 hours before they announced the entire race for the weekend was cancelled. Man, there were a lot of pissed-off people there and I can only imagine how the owners/drivers of the boats felt. Some of whom we met in the pits had come from Redding, Ca. and as far away as Arizona!

    What the announcer said earlier in the morning it was a safety issue which was holding up the program. He later announced they were waiting for the safety rescue boats to show up. He then later announced they were having trouble with the timing lights. At around 12:30pm he announced the races have been cancelled for the entire weekend and we could get a refund. The line was long to enter in the morning, but the line was even longer to get the refund!!

    As we packed up to leave, I was talking to some people who told me what they found out was that the club rescue boats they had there were not suitable to whomever had the power to decide the boats did not meet their criteria. Then they had the NJBA rescue boats come up all the way from Bakersfield only to be rejected by the same people who decided the CDBA rescue boats were not up their standards. That would make four rescue that failed their standards. Wow! If what we were told is what really happened, my only question is, who are these people who have the power to cancel an entire weekend of racing because the rescue boats did not meet their standards? And, after seeing the rescue boats, what kind of club rescue boat would meet their standards? What I remember of the rescue boats of the circle boat races (APBA) I was involved in some years back in this region, they wouldn't even look at them, but would only laugh! I can tell you in all the years I raced in circle boats in this region, the local club rescue boats worked out just fine!

    I bought a drag boat to get involved in this sport, but I did not finish it in time for this race and I'm glad I didn't and this race was pretty much in my back yard! I can only imagine what the owners/drivers of all the boats that showed up were thinking, especially those who had driven hundreds of miles and had gotten motel rooms.

    When we finally got to the gate for our refund, I asked the Park Ranger @ McSwain if they would ever have the drag boats back again and he told us he highly doubts it! He said they spent a month getting the place and the logistics set for this race and they lost their asses on the deal. He said the promoter really dropped the ball and it doesn't look good for this lake to be a future site for races!

    I have to agree with the ranger about the promoter! (1) How could a promoter wait until the day of the race to get an "OK" from whomever has the deciding factor on whether a rescue boat fits their criteria or not. This should have been done weeks before the event, and (2) why didn't he have the timing lights working in proper order before they even hit the water. If they need to be in the water to know or be adjusted, then it should have been done the day before (Friday), not while the spectators are there when they came to see racing. I'm sure they didn't have to wait until Sat. morning to set up the lights.

    I know some will rebuttal this post with comments like, if you know so much then why don't you become a promoter or, if you think it's easy to set up a race then why don't you help out and things to that nature. We have been both car and boat racing for the past 40 + years now and heard all of this before and now I'm only posting this because there were a lot of angry and disappointed spectators. There were a lot of people who came from far distances, only to sit around four to five hours only to be told it was cancelled. A lot of people were saying why don't they just let the racers make some passes like they do at Camp Far West. A lady next to me said she really didn't care who won or not, she just wanted to see and hear some fast boats go across the water.

    In the end, I think many of those spectators will have strong reservations about attending another drag boat event and this is not good for the sport whatsoever.

    By the way, you can chalk off another body of water in California to race at with this feign show!
    Last edited by Pale Rider; 05-30-2015 at 04:42 PM.

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  3. #2
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    I got a call from the 710 team to tell me the same story...WTF?
    Also talking with Ben last week, he told me Ken Dollar from Lucas was to be there to see if a national event in Nor-Cal would work, looks like were Fucked Now

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    Well who's the person that thinks the NJBA and the CDBA rescue boats aren't up to par. They have been working fine for decades. Sounds to me, someone wanted out of this race at the last minute. Just what the sport didn't need.


    Tim
    Last edited by River Rat 005; 05-30-2015 at 07:53 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by River Rat 005 View Post
    Well who's the person that thinks the NJBA and the CDBA rescue boats aren't up to par. They have been working fine for decades. Sounds to me, someone wanted out of this race at the last minute. Just what the sport didn't need.


    Tim
    No idea what the issue was with the CDBA boats, but from what I was hearing out there today the event insurance couldn't cover the NJBA boats for some reason.

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    when I pulled up today.there was a line to get in.two guys working the gate.then I said its quite over there no boats running.guys working on the lights.and guys wrenching on the rescue boats.then njba rescue boats show up.i don't think they could work out the insurance for them.had nothing to do with being suitable for the job.oh and no beer stand to be found..........

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    The information that I've gotten about the cancellation (from several different sources) is that it wasn't so much about the rescue boats as it was about Lucas' lack of adequate insurance coverage for the whole event. Lucas self insures and apparently rhe authorities (probably lawyers) behind putting on the Race felt that the 10M Bond Certificate presented by Lucas was insufficient and did not cover all the potential risk(s) they believed were involved in staging such an event. If true, it's rather an interesting development given Lucas puts on the other Races in California using a similar self insured vehicle as other venues could start requiring more coverage (?).

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    not sure about that.how do you run a race without running rescue boats.lucas isn't behind any other boat race in calif that I know of.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1/4 Miler View Post
    The information that I've gotten about the cancellation (from several different sources) is that it wasn't so much about the rescue boats as it was about Lucas' lack of adequate insurance coverage for the whole event. Lucas self insures and apparently rhe authorities (probably lawyers) behind putting on the Race felt that the 10M Bond Certificate presented by Lucas was insufficient and did not cover all the potential risk(s) they believed were involved in staging such an event. If true, it's rather an interesting development given Lucas puts on the other Races in California using a similar self insured vehicle as other venues could start requiring more coverage (?).
    Lucas oils Ken Dollar and myself did everything we could to get the NJBA rescue boats on water, NJBA called there attorney and was told what NJBA need to be covered in an event of an accident, Being that it was Saturday and ken was unable to reach the ins co underwriters. we were unable to use the NJBA rescue equipment due to lack of coverage

    Rescue boats that were on site were not adequate at the time, I was told they developed issue, boats were inspected a some time before the race date

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    I was not there but i don't believe it was the CDBA's safety boats and definitely not the CDBA's timing system.This race was not set up by the CDBA. I hope anyone that is upset about the race being cancelled doesn't hold it against the CDBA. Its unfortunate the race was cancelled but it sound like every effort was made to save it.

  12. #10
    4GsFloatin
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    Insurance for the event played a huge roll in the cluster F. We were there and set up at 6am. They were still waiting on adequate rescue boats, as the depth at finish line was 50 ft+... They hauled @$$ to get th rescue boats up from Bakersfield. ( all supposedly)

    its really too bad....there was a great turnout for this event.

  13. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatnasty View Post
    I was not there but i don't believe it was the CDBA's safety boats and definitely not the CDBA's timing system.This race was not set up by the CDBA. I hope anyone that is upset about the race being cancelled doesn't hold it against the CDBA. Its unfortunate the race was cancelled but it sound like every effort was made to save it.
    the two rescue boats were CHBA boats that were under construction as rescue boats over the past 6-8 months by a couple central cal companies that have been involved in dbr for a very long time. they were finished, inspected, and approved for use by the head of the rescue group over a month ago. on Friday, the rescue group determined the two boats were unusable. I never heard what the issues were with these two boats to come to that conclusion. perhaps the rescue group, that basically killed this race, provided a long list of discrepancies to the CHBA that would need to be fixed before they can be used? don't know. it just seems odd that 2 boats, that had been approved a month before, would all of a sudden be unacceptable. maybe 1 of the 2, but both??? then there was an effort to rent 2 boats from another org that fell apart over an unobtainable last minute insurance rider, which was the final nail in the race.

    the lake was not released to set the track up until Friday. a new track, unknown bottom topography, not available until the day before? there were fishing boat trailers parked in what was supposed to be the pits all day Thursday, and Friday until about noon. even with that, they were almost there on Saturday by about noon, which to me was a hell of an effort. no doubt in my mind we would have been running Saturday afternoon, had there not been the rescue boat issues.

    it is devastating that this would be cancelled the way it was. feel very bad for the spectators and locals that would really have benefitted from a good race. and with 90 some boats, it would have been good.

    I wouldn't be so quick to write this off as a venue, based on a heat of the moment comment from a ranger. see how things settle out as some time passes.

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    Info I got all the way up here in Alaska was the CDBA rescue boats weren't adaquate to lift capsules? Also, that Lucas Oil and NJBA aren't best of friends ... but what do I know, I am very sorry to hear about this mess, think I'll go club some baby seals now

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    Default race

    I, as with all involved have waited a long time for drag boats to come back to our area, it was very dissapionting to sit there, that was bad enough, but then to have to listen to the asshole doing the anouncing try to feed everyone bullshit, I wanted to find out who he was and kick his ass. I feel bad for the racers, all. Maybe the cdba needs to stay the fuck out of California, or study the appropriet insurance regulations, and pay the foregoing fees.

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    As disappointing as it was to spend the day waiting for racing that never happened, I hope bp298's thoughts regarding future events at the venue are on track. The set up seemed pretty nice from a spectators point of view. While there, my buddy and I were talking about booking one of the RV sites if there is another event there. They were pretty nice and close to the course as well.

    As a long time fan of the sport, I appreciate and want to thank those that put forth the effort to bring this together. I know it must be a monumental task to pull off an event like this. Even though this one turned out the way it did, the amount of effort was apparent. Thanks to you all.

    If there is another event there, will someone please bring in a beer truck? That part sucked more than anything else....
    Last edited by Heatseeker; 05-31-2015 at 05:21 PM.

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