Motor Man has been involved in both auto racing, as well as boat racing, since the early 1960’s. Although he’s never raced boats, he tested them years ago, and has built engines that have won numerous races and many championships.
One of the boat racers he’s known for a long time is Larry Lauterbach. Not only has Larry raced boats, but like his father, he also builds them. Motor Man says that he’s the “Richard Petty of boat racing”. (If you’d like to read more about Larry’s work and his racing achievements, click here.)
Larry built a 2-seater race boat for exhibition rides at selected boat races. Many times, the folks taking these rides are local dignitaries or members of the media. This weekend, our local boat race, The Hampton Cup Regatta, which began in 1926, took place at historic Ft. Monroe in Hampton, Va.
Motor Man REALLY wanted me to experience a ride in Larry’s boat, so on Saturday afternoon, it happened. Yes, I was apprehensive, but I knew of Larry’s reputation as a driver, and I knew Motor Man would never recommend that I do something that would put me in danger.
Larry’s granddaughter, Lexi, was also going for her first ride. In this picture, we’re waiting on the dock prior to our rides.
The time came for my ride, so I gathered up my nerves and carefully climbed into the boat. And we were off:
My Motor Man took this video of the ride. Although there’s a lot of wind noise and you can hear bystanders talking in the background, I left the audio as is.
I was a bit worried about how weak my knees would be when it came time to get back on the dock. Thankfully, I didn’t have any problems, although it was a stretch for these short legs. I did have lots of help, which was much appreciated. One of those helping was Steve, a good friend of Larry’s. Also Steve’s son, Brent, in the white shirt, who rode after I did.
Also helping was our friend, Kim, whose husband and son both race. She was on the dock watching her son compete in his class. (He won.) She helped me get out of that life vest and helmet.
Although I probably wouldn’t have signed up for this adventure on my own, I can say that I’m glad I had the experience, and have the pictures, video and an autographed Lauterbach t-shirt to prove it. Oh, just for the record, our top speed was about 85 mph.
~These Days Of Mine~