As summer winds down, the powerboats rev up. This weekend race fans and boat teams will once again descend on the beautiful waters of Lake of the Ozarks for the 2008 Offshore Super Series National Championships, Sept. 25-27.
The event will take place at the Resort and Yacht Club at Toad Cove and Shady Gators. It’s shaping up to be one of the largest events ever at the lake.
Winners will split a $50,000 purse.
This year promises to bring more of the same great racing we’ve come to expect as local favorite Bob Morgan, Team Bad Moon Risin’, is a last-minute addition to the pack.
Morgan admits he did not know if he would be racing this year until late Monday afternoon, when some last minute support came through.
Now Bob and his team at Big Thunder Marine, along with teammates from performanceboat.com, have been working around the clock to get the boat ready for the race. Morgan ran in the Shootout in late August and has since done some engine work, hoping to break the 170 mph mark this weekend.
“Going against some of the tougher competition, we’ll have to run tight and fast through the corners and hope to gain enough ground to hold on down the back stretch, where some of the larger boats really take off,” Morgan said.
Morgan plans to compete Saturday in the drag-style event alongside Matt Smith, and Sunday in the circuit event with Jeff Tillman.
Another local fan favorite rumored to race is Dave Scott, winner of the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout last August.
Morgan said he’s raced in Argentina, Key West, and the Bahamas, but the lake is his favorite because it’s a tighter course where driving counts, not just straight-line speed.
He said it was nice to be able to come back and race at the lake and give something back to an area that has given him so much.
Doc Janssen and his son, Matt, who call the lake their second home, will also be on hand to make a run for the championships.
“We just finished racing last week in North Carolina and will be arriving late Thursday,” Janssen said. “We are ready for a big weekend.”
New event added
A new year also comes with a few new twists as well. Race fans will be treated to a special single-elimination, drag-style event.
Racers will line up two abreast and duke it out over a mile-long, 150 feet wide stretch of water.
Once both boats reach 60 mph, the pace boat gives the “green flag” and the race ensues. First boat to cross the line wins and moves on. The loser is knocked out.
Page 2 of 2 - The last boat standing wins. The top boat in each class will win the coveted “Top Gun” trophy and a year’s worth of bragging rights.
The drag racing event is open to all regular classes of OSS, with Pro-Am boats being allowed at the Chief Referee’s discretion.
Race coordinators are expecting over a dozen race teams. Event/Media Director, Ellen Greenleaf, said, “We’re expecting around 26 OSS spec boats and eight to 12e pro-am boats this weekend.”
John Brunner, OSS Operations Director, expects the event to be a huge success.
Being a championship race, with double points, a good turnout is expected.
General admission to the events will be free, along with free admission to live music events throughout the weekend.