Hydroplane races return to Port Angeles

The Peninsula Water Sports Association of Port Angeles, Washington announced today that the 7th Annual Strait Thunder Hydroplane Races and Family Festival will be returning to Port Angeles Harbor this year one weekend sooner. Normally held the first weekend in October, the festival has moved up a weekend earlier. Nothing will compare with the sights and sounds of hydroplanes competing at speeds of up to 160 miles per hour in a tight mile and a quarter loop in their final race of the 2009 season on the Port Angeles Harbor this September 26 and 27.

The Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association is an automotive-powered class which continues to gain popularity especially with fans seeking affordable, exciting family entertainment. Although they utilize today's technology, the thundering engines produce a sound that echoes back to the classic days of hydroplane racing.

In addition to the Unlimited Lights, and the popular grass-roots Lighter-than-LIGHTS hydroplane classes, an additional twist is added this year with the inclusion of the Westport Series. At four select ULHRA events Thunderboats from all across the United States and Canada are being invited to participate and battle it out on the water for what is reputed to be the largest prize package in ULHRA racing history. The winner take all dash-for-cash final will occur at the fourth event of the Westport Series September 26-27 when Victoria Express presents Strait Thunder in Port Angeles, Washington. In order to qualify for the series and prize money, the hydroplanes must be at least 25 feet in length and exclusively supercharged. That equates to lots of noise on the water, which is why these boats have been dubbed the Thunderboats.

Hydroplanes will begin arriving at City Park on Friday September 25th. Concession stands open Saturday and Sunday. The races will start Saturday morning, September 26th with the championship finals running Sunday afternoon September 27th. All the racing action can be viewed free to the public on site or via live video streaming at

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