What to Expect at the Outboard National Championships

What to Expect at the 2017 APBA Stock and Junior Outboard National Championships in Grass Lake:

When the 2017 Nationals roll into the Village of Grass Lake, Michigan you can expect the best and most competitive outboard hydroplane racing in the country.  “The Nationals” is a once a year event where up to 300 of the best outboard hydroplane racers from all corners of the United States and Canada will compete for the coveted APBA (American Power Boat Association) National Championship. 

The Village of Grass Lake will play host for the third time to the Stock Outboard Nationals that date back to the 1950s within APBA.  The APBA is a sanctioning body that dates back to 1903 and is headquartered in Eastpoint, Michigan and has many 3rd and 4th generation racers that will be attending trying to win a championship.  Racers young and old, male and female will compete in classes that reach speeds from 40mph (for the youth classes) all the way up to 80+mph on custom built hydroplane and runabout hulls.    

The participants in the sport are a mix of new drivers, many who went through a “Racer School” offered through local racing club, and other multi generation drivers. The pits are accessible if you sign a waiver and the drivers and crew are often very willing to chat about the sport and their racing equipment.  Whether watching from the park or talking to a driver, you will experience the excitement of side by side racing of up to 12 boats at one time with roostertails flying and boats floating on a cushion of air as they navigate the 1 mile oval course. 

Test sessions are Monday July 24th from 9:00am-4:00pm.  National Championship elimination heat races and finals will go from Tuesday July 25th to Friday July 28th from approximately 9:30am to 3:00pm.  Saturday July 29th will be marathon racing over an extended race course along with some special event races.  The event is free to the public and as noted a waiver must be signed to enter the pit areas.


For more information on what to do while you are in town for the National Championship, read Experience Jackson's Rundown

Author Bio: Mark Miskerik is a 45-year-old Mechanical Engineer in the automotive industry that has raced Stock Outboard hydroplanes since age 11. He is a board member of MHRA (Michigan Hydroplane Racing Association) and the Race Director for the 2017 APBA Stock and Junior Outboard National Championships.

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