Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta

March 20-22, 2015

Recap, Photos & Videos !!!

The past came alive as vintage and classic race boats of bygone eras return to Wooton Park in Tavares, Florida for our eight annual Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta. Tavares is now a major stop on the CRA Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit, and this winter's regatta expanded to 3 full days, with beautifully restored vintage and classic race boats running demonstration laps on a 1 mile oval course on beautiful Lake Dora. In addition to seeing and hearing these unique and beautiful boats run, spectators were also invited to view them close-up in the pit area at Wooton Park on both Saturday and Sunday.


This was our biggest and best Tavares Regatta yet - with 78 registered vintage race boats !!!

Fall Thunder Regatta Video  - Pete Boden

Spring Thunder Regatta Video - Pete Boden

Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta Video - Harry Holst

Tavares Spring Thunder Photos by F. Peirce Williams

On Thursday morning, had to move a few seaplanes to clear the Tavares Hot Pits. Wooton Park is actually a seaplane base with wide ramps, huge hot pit area and Av-gas. Our vintage race boat motors love Av-gas !!!


Wooton Park, Tavares


Action Photos by Pete Boden - Shoot To Thrill Pix















The following photos were taken by Bill John.

On Thursday, we hauled the CRA equipment trailer and safety/rescue boat to the Hot Pits. Then we worked on the course markers, fueled then launched the safety/rescue boat. Many thanks to Bill Fisk, Jeff Buckley, Gerri Prusko and Jim Clarke - all CRA volunteers.



On Friday morning the crane arrived at 8am and we started to setup the Hot Pits.






On Friday afternoon at 3pm we started testing several vintage race boats. First was Larry Lauterbach testing Roger LaPierre's WildCatter followed by Terry Fiest testing Dick Whyte's Scorpio. This was Terry's first time driving a Grand Prix hydroplane, and was mentored by Tom D'Eath. All went well, and Terry crossed another item off his bucket list !!!









We also trailer fired a couple of outboards.



Bill Black tested his vintage unlimited hydroplane - Gale V


Ron Snyder tested Jay Armstrong's vintage unlimited hydroplane Miss US IV



And then on Friday evening it was time to celebrate with good friends, good food and lots of grog. It is important to remember that these vintage events are really social events, and every vintage Regatta is actually a reunion and gathering of good friends with our beautiful vintage boats in the background, pulling us together. All are welcome to come join the fun, with or without a boat. We hope you will join us at our next Regatta !!!

Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit 












After an evening of celebration, we started early on Saturday morning with the Drivers Meeting at 8am.




Then it was time to rock & roll, as we ran vintage heats all day long from 9 till 5pm.























On Saturday evening it was time to celebrate again with good friends, good food and lots of grog !!!

Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta - Award Winners


Daniel J. Murphy Award - Bill Burgess - Sleeper

President's Award - Dick Whyte - Scorpio

Awesome Engine - Lee Hildreth - Red and White Donzi

Unique Boat - Duff Daily - Super Cinders

Best Dressed Crew - Bill and Judy Black - Gale V

Furthest Travelled - Harry and Kathy Holst - HeatWave

Outboard Craft - Bill Edwards - DennisPointMenace

Historic Boat - Bill Burgess - Sleeper

Family Spirit - Ken, Michael and Kyle Gallup - Disorderly Conduct and Warrior

Vintage Spirit - Steve Larkin - American Diabetes

Golden Eagle/Volunteer Spirit - Jeannie Bowen - CRA Board Member

Golden Snorkel/Hard Luck - Al Gammon - Butter Pecan

After another evening of celebration, we started early Sunday morning with the Drivers Meeting at 8am. Then it was time to rock & roll again, as we ran vintage heats all day long from 9 till 5pm !!!












Many thanks to our Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta officials !!!

Race Director - Bill John

Referee - Jeff Buckley

Scorer - Bob Moore

Administration - Gerri Prusko

Registration - Jeannie Bowen

Risk Manager - Linda Eldredge

Vintage Rep - Kevin Klosterman

Vintage Inspector - Rich Evans

Pit Boss - Lin Galeucia

Crane Boss - Scott Batronie

Dock Boss - Dick Daly

Patrol Boats - Jim Clarke

Safety/Rescue - Bill Frodl

Gate Security - Mike Roamer

Radios - Dick Whyte

Tractors - Riley Warddrip

Equipment trailers - Roger LaPierre

 Regatta Videos !!!

CRA Shoot To Thrill Video - Pete Boden

CRA Shoot To Thrill Video - Pete Boden

Switzer Wings - Rich Luhrs

Switzer Wings - Roger Hinsdale

Tunnel Outboards

Jersey Speed Skiffs

Grand Prix Hydro-1

Grand Prix Hydro-2

Lee Hildreth - Donzi Video

Jack Lowe - Mid Hydros Video

Jack Lowe - Grand Prix Hydro

Jack Lowe - Miss US Vintage Unlimited Video

Tavares Spring Thunder Photos by F. Peirce Williams

We are finally done posting our Recap & Photos, with well over 1,000 shots sorted, edited and posted. As always, a true labor of love to share the many magical moments at our recent Tavares Spring Thunder Regatta. Come join all the fun and all the adventure at our next Tavares Thunder Regatta. Please be considerate and register early to reserve your space !!!

  Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit 

For locals, please join our:

Saturday Morning Gatherings

Monthly Fun Run & Gathering

Florida Vintage Race Boat Circuit

Some related vintage race boat links:

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