Excalibur III O-250 Mostes Hydroplane at Lake Cullaby, Oregon, June 2009 (Credit: Roland Dechert photo.)
ABOUT US: Excalibur Racing is a non-profit, boat racing organization dedicated to the sport of international professional outboard hydroplane racing. We are members of the Columbia Outboard Racing Association (CORA), Seattle Outboard Association (SOA), and former members of the American Power Boat Association (APBA). Other local and national boat racing clubs and associations we are associated with are the State Line Outboard Racing Association (SLORA) and the United States Title Series (USTS).
TEAM HISTORY: Our team has successfully raced stock, modified, and Professional Racing Outboard (PRO) hydroplane classes since 1993. Both Al and Bonnie have raced in the C-Stock hydroplane class at APBA-sanctioned races. Al is a lifetime member of the Seattle Outboard Association. Our team has attended five APBA PRO National Title races in Depue, Illinois, since 1995. We have raced in APBA Region 10 for 22 racing seasons.
Excalibur I OSY-400/C-Stock class (kneel-down) outboard hydroplane driven by Al & Bonnie until 2008
(Credit: A. Peffley photo)
2013 O-125 Cullaby Lake Race Photos: The first APBA race sanction we participated in during the 2013 season was at Lake Cullaby near Seaside, Oregon. The pictures shown below are from the first race for the Rossi GRM 125cc motor setup on the modified Karelsen hydroplane which I have named "Project 125". The Karelsen hull was designed for 250cc motor applications. I stuck the motor (melted a piston) from running too lean and over-heating during the second heat. The motor was quickly repaired and run at the Silver Lake, Eatonville, WA race in 2013.
Launching Excalibur II (AKA "Project 125") with new O-125 setup at Lake Cullaby race in June, 2013 (Credit: Excalibur Racing)
Ready to race in Excalibur II hydro at 2013 Cullaby Lake race before Heat 1 on Saturday (Credit: Excalibur Racing photo)
PRO class hydros lined up for Heat 1 start of CORA/APBA race at Lake Cullaby in June, 2013 (Credit: Excalibur Racing photo)
2014 Racing Season: In 2014, at Lake Cullaby, Oregon, we attended the Roy Blackwell Memorial Regatta. We competed in the APBA 350ccH Class Western Divisional Race with our Italian Rossi GRM 250cc motor. We won 2nd Place at this APBA Western Divisionals Race on Saturday, June 21, 2014. Sunday, during the first regular race heat in 350 PRO hydro, I had an expansion pipe control equipment linkage failure (broken pipe position stop wire and bent pipes connector rod), but nothing really serious to fix after the boat racing weekend. The summer weather was perfect and the oval course was really fun to drive. There were 176 entries on Saturday alone. 43 heats were run in one day (many of them APBA Western Divisional Class races) -- non-stop boat racing action from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM! Woo Hoo!
Our team also took 2nd Place in the 350ccH PRO Class at Silver Lake in Everett, WA, on June 7, 2014. This was our team's first racing opportunity of the APBA 2014 Region 10 boat racing season. We did really well against Region 10 competitors equipped with 350cc Professional Racing Outboard (PRO) motors that are 100 cubic centimeters (cc's) larger than our Italian PRO motor. All PRO hydros run methanol race fuel and have similar carburetor sizes and types on the highly specialized two-cycle boat racing outboard motors.
We don't race at Newberg, Oregon, any more due to the narrow, odd-shaped race course and frequent debris in the river (we only have one $1,300 gear case for local races.) It is still a great place to go and watch boat racing on the Willamette River.
We were not able to race at Silver Lake, Castle Rock, WA, in 2014. The race was called off because of high wind conditions for both Saturday and Sunday on the boat race course. The Karelsen PRO hydro's new direct steering hardware did test well during the Friday testing session as the wind wasn't a factor that day. Boat racers call cancelled race days due to high winds "Blown Off" days in boat racing lingo. It was also a significant revenue loss of the first major local race of the season for the hosting boat racing club.
The last three races of the 2014 season were not very productive for our team. Both motors did not perform well at Silver Lake, Eatonville, and Lake Spanaway. Lee and I rebuilt the 125cc motor and it ran well in testing on Friday at Lake Lawrence. However, I hurt my lower back some way on Friday testing at Lake Lawrence and we had to pack up our race trailer by the end of the testing day. I sold the complete 125cc motor setup to another Region 10 racer after the Lake Lawrence Regatta.
2015 Racing Season Activity - We planned to only run the Rossi 250cc motor in 2015. The GRM 250cc motor sustained significant piston and cylinder wall damage when we had an exhaust pipe come loose at the end of the 2014 Cullaby Lake. When the hydroplane came off plane the motor sucked in some broken pipe controls hardware scrapnel into the #2 cylinder chamber. The damage happened at the end of the Lake Cullaby second heat on Sunday. As a consequence of this significant motor damage event, we only raced one race in 2015 at Lake Lawrence in Yelm, Washington. The entire 250cc motor was refurbished after we discovered the crankshaft web also needed to be replaced and the cylinder wall was professionally recoated with a Nikosil process. The motor ran well at Lawrence.
O-250 Mostes Racing History: Our first 250/350ccH PRO class race for the 2011 season in APBA Region 10 was at Silver Lake, Everett, on June 4th. The weather was perfect and the O-250 Mostes ran well on the unique, triangular-pattern boat race course. Unfortunately, the other 250cc hydroplane owner who showed up early at the race site withdrew his entry just before the race, so I ran with three 350cc PRO hydroplanes entered in the event. We also showed the O-250 Mostes with our ProGraphyx sponsor at the 2011 Cowlitz County Business Expo hosted by the Cowlitz County Chambers of Commerce at the Cowlitz County Expo Center in Longview, WA, on February 25, 2011. The hydro was a big hit at the show and drew lots of visitors to the ProGraphyx booth (see picture below.) The Mostes technology is being applied to our Karelsen hydro setups and has become the reference design for several new and successful US boat builder-designed composite hulls.
Excalibur III O-250 hydro in the ProGraphyx booth at Cowlitz County Business Expo - 25 February 2011
(Crdeit: A. Peffley photo)
PRO Class Hydroplanes We Have Owned & Raced: Excalibur I (our OSY-400/C-Stock racing class hydro) was sold to a California boat racer in 2008. Excalibur II has been modified to Union Internationale Motonautique (UIM) hull construction safety standards for the O-125 class of hydroplane racing. Excalibur III was purchased in Florida after the 2008 UIM/APBA F-250 World's Cup from the Italian Cremona Racing Team. Excalibur III is an Italian Mostes hull powered by an Italian Rossi GRM 250cc (opposed twin cylinder) outboard racing motor. Ed Karelsen and his son built Excalibur II in Seattle with aircraft quality composite materials. Excalibur II has run a Japanese Yamato 250cc racing motor in the past; it is now be equipped with a Rossi GRM 125cc (single cylinder) or optional GRM 250cc (two cylinder) outboard racing motor. The Excalibur III Mostes hydro was sold to Mike Schmidt Racing in December, 2011, and is now back in Region 10 with a third US owner.
Racing Equipment Descriptions: PRO racing motors have one adjustable expansion pipe per cylinder (two pipes that are linked by a bar for the 250cc motors) that is controlled by a foot pedal (like in our hydro) or hand lever near the throttle. The straight exhaust pipe is spring-loaded to return to the normal driving position (in or out, depending on the driver's preference and the type of race start.) I prefer to "pull the pipes" for acceleration and milling before a APBA-style clock start. UIM-style exhaust pipes have aluminum muffler tips installed at the end of the pipes for quieter running. Both Rossi racing motors share many spare parts; the bore size is the same for the cylinders, they share the same carburetor models and fuel feed requirements, and the ignition types are identical.
OTHER RACING EQUIPMENT: For the last six years we have used a Coleman electric starting motor (developed for starting go-karts) to start our PRO motors; the motors may also be rope-started. Our racing trailer is a specially-equipped, 2009 Load-Runner enclosed dual-axle 20-foot cargo trailer with a cargo ramp rear door (we can also haul our collector cars inside the enclosed trailer, if need be.) Special thanks go out from us to ProGraphyx in Longview, WA for our race boat and trailer graphics and to Dewald Props in Reading, PA, for PRO class stainless steel racing propellers made to order (sometimes on short notice.)
2003 Rossi GRM 125cc motor powerhead & Dellorto carburetor modified for methanol fuel
(Credit: A. Peffley photo)
FUEL & OIL: The PRO GRM motors that we run for our 250cc and 125cc class setups burn racing grade methanol fuel and Red Line synthetic racing oil. The Red Line synthetic oil formula is similar to castor oil except that it burns cleaner and leaves less residual film after racing. The special 2-cycle oil is combined with the methanol fuel in a 20:1 fuel ratio mixture. Excalibur Racing was selected by Red Line to test a new formula with less detergents added to the oil in 2006. The new formula has now replaced the original Red Line 2-cycle racing oil used in methanol-fueled go-kart, powerboat, motorcycle, and drag racing. We use Marvel Mystery Oil to fog down our motors after each day of racing. Special thanks also go out from us to Wilcox & Flegel in Longview, WA, for our 2010-13 seasons' supply of methanol race fuel. We also wish to thank Al Book Custom Welding in Burien, WA, for supplying our custom fuel cell in the O-250 Mostes hydro and a new fuel cell for the O-125/O-250 Karelsen hydro setup. Lee Teitze of Machined Components has modified our motor tower and pipes rack over the winter to accept both Rossi powerheads for quick changeouts at the 2103 season races. Thank you Lee and your race crew for sharing your special boat racing talents and precious time in keeping the 125cc motor running during the initial testing session and the 2013 race season.
Al suited up in his new SRP Dyeema fabric cut suit, Shoei helmet, neck brace, Kevlar gloves, & SRP life jacket
(Credit: B. Peffley photo)
DRIVING POSITION & PERSONAL SAFETY EQUIPMENT: Our PRO hydros are driven in the prone (laydown) position within the narrow cockpit confines of the light weight, three-point design hull. The combined equipped hull, motor, and fuel weight is just slightly heavier than the outfitted weight of a male adult driver (including his safety clothing & gear.) Drivers wear a cut-resistant racing suit made of Kevlar or Dyeema ballistic-protection fabric, a custom-made racing life vest equipped with composite flak panels (inserted in chest side and back pocket cavities) and leg and helmet safety straps, a Snell-rated full-face helmet with safety strap connection loops, closed-toe driving boots, and water sport gloves (for a sure grip on the hand throttle and go-kart style steering wheel.) Again, we extend a special thanks to Security Racing Products in Issaquah, WA, for supplying Al with new custom racing suit and life jacket safety gear with very reasonable prices, custom fitting, and high quality craftsmanship. Driver & crew safety are always a priority in all motorsports.
Excalibur II Karelsen O-250 hull modified to UIM specs - April 2011 (Credit: A. Peffley photo)
O-125 setup at Tigard NAPA Store Boat Show in 2012 (Credit: A. Peffley photo)
Custom-made dash with MyChron 4 display & Euro fuel pressure gauge (Credit: A. Peffley photo)
We raced the UIM-retrofitted Karelsen hydroplane four times in 2013, six times during 2014, and once in 2015.
Race Conuct & Hydroplane Weight Limits: APBA PRO classes run on a closed oval race course with a clock-controlled flying start. European UIM O-250 and O-125 hydroplane races are conducted on oval and traingular-shaped courses with a modified LeMans start and they usually require more laps to complete than US APBA or AOF races. APBA and AOF clubs race on fresh water rivers and lakes throughout the United States. The Depue Mens Club and US Title Series organizations normally host the APBA PRO Nationals in Depue, Illinois, each year. US national championships are awarded for championship race finishes 1st through 3rd place. APBA also acknowledges and awards boat racers with most earned national competition points for a specified number of competition races in each PRO hydroplane or runabout class. There are no weight limits for APBA PRO Class 125cc or 250cc hydroplanes. However, UIM does have minimum weight limits for O-125 and O-250 hydroplane classes as indicated in the table below (ref.: pages 308-314 of the 2011-13 Circuit Rules posted on the UIM official website).
2011-14 UIM Circuit Rules
Section 520 - Racing Outboards (O)
- O.250 Class: No limit on number of cylinders with capacity up to 250ccs incl.; Minimum weight 200 kg (440 lb)*
- O.350 Class: No limit on number of cylinders with capacity up to 350ccs incl.; Minimum weight 220 kg (480 lb)*
Note*: Minimum weight is a complete [racing boat] rig with driver weighed ashore directly after a race without residual water but with residual fuel.
UPDATED July, 2017
SOA/CORA/APBA/USTS RACE SANCTIONS
2017 BOAT RACING SCHEDULE - FINAL
April 29-30 Inboards Racing + Select Outboard Classes Lake Lawrence, Yelm, WA (Stock & Mod Classes only)
May 6-7 Silver Lake (South) Race Castle Rock, WA (Silver Lake Resort; Sunday was blown-off)
May 20-21 Kitsap Lake Regatta Bremerton, WA (Navy Rec. Beach)
May 27-28 Willamette River Race Newberg, OR (City Boat Ramp - 45SS OPC Nationals)
June 3 Silver Lake (North) - Salty Seas Days Festival Everett, WA (City Lakeside Park - Babcock Race)
June 17-18 CORA Cullaby Lake Regatta North of Seaside, OR (County Park - Stock & J Divisionals)
July 08-09 Black Lake Regatta - Inboards/Vintage Olympia, WA (Select Outboard Classes only)
July 28-30 USTS PRO National Championship Depue, IL, on Lake Depue (dates to be confirmed)
Aug 18-20 Silver Lake (Central) Henley Memorial Regatta Eatonville, WA (East of JBLM and Graham, WA - PRO Divisionals)
Sep 9-10 Angle Lake Regatta SEATAC, WA (Just south of airport, NEW Race Site - Mod Divisionals)
Sep 15-17 Lawrence Lake Records Race Yelm, WA (Lake Lawrence Community Club - ASH, ASR NA Championships)
Sep 23-24 Devils Lake Kilo & 1/4-Mile Time Trials Lincoln City, OR (County Boat Ramp on east side of lake's south end)
End of 2015 Season Summary: Our GRM 250cc race motor required a complete rebuild after the 2014 racoing season. The complete motor rebuild (including new crankshaft and carburetor improvements) was not completed until the Lake Lawrence Records race in the fall. The rebuilt motor ran well at Lawrence. Due to an ambulance services no-show on Friday, we were not able to extensively test the new hydroplane setup at the last race of the season. I had a heart attack event after the first heat at Lake Lawrence, so I could not race in 2016.
End of 2013 Season Comments: The new 125cc motor setup was running very lean on fuel. We tested at Silver Lake, Castle Rock, with two different types of carburetors (Dellorto and Mikuni) with the same results in June before the first race. I melted a piston pulling the pipe in the back stretch at Cullaby Lake during the first race of the season. We rebuilt the 125cc motor and ran it again at Silver Lake, Eatonville, on Saturday. We had fuel system, steering, and carburetor problems, but finished both heats with legal starts and placed fourth overall (based on the last heat's performance.) We ran the 250cc Rossi motor for the first time on the Karelsen hydro at Lake Lawrence in 2013. The O-250 motor ran well achieving rpm levels over 13,500 rpm. I was disappointed in my direct steering setup and changed the setup to include a steering damper, smaller steering drum, and a line tension turnbuckle like they use on the Trombetta hydro hulls in Europe. The Karelsen hull got better lift with the 250cc motor than the Project 125 setup. Even though the Karelsen is veyr light weight, it was actually designed to run 250cc PRO motors.
As planned, the direct steering system was improved in November, 2013, by installing a new 3-inch steering drum that replaced the 5-inch drum used at Lake Lawrence. A new Mercedes Benz steering damper unit and a stainless steel turnbuckle were also installed on the port side steering cable to reduce loosening of the direct steering system at high speeds and rough water conditions. A plastic containment tray and HAZMAT pad for fuel spills and potential tank leaks was added to the rear floor area. The aft bulkhead was modified to accomodate the new fuel tank tray and pad. As of June, 2014, I did not find a HUD system that meets my driver helmet integration and human engineering criteria. I think the technology is still some years away from being a viable fielded technology in outboard boat racing.
2013 KILO Records Special Event: Scroll down to see the 2013 Devils Lake Kilos photographs taken at the Devils Lake State Park boat ramp (special event pits location). This was the last racing event for APBA Region in 2013. The Sunday runs were cancelled ("blown off" due to high winds) on Sunday. The pictures below were taken on Saturday.
2013 Kilo Runs - The Karelsen hydro needed serious steering system modifications after the 2013 Lake Lawrence race, so I elected to help several of my PRO boat racing friends by crewing for them during the CORA/APBA kilo and quarter-mile record runs at Devils Lake, Oregon. Devils Lake is located next to Lincoln City on the Oregon coast. Lee Tietze and Jim Ramsay both ran their new 350cc PRO hydros at this Region 10 Special Event. The water was bright green color with a major algae bloom, so the hydro roostertails were often colored shades of green and white. The Saturday weather was perfect (sunny, dry, and no significant wind.) Jim set a regional quarter-mile record for 350ccH. Both Lee and Jim achieved average record run speeds at over 100 miles per hour. Jim set a quarter-mile record with one run clocked at 103.8 mph with about 80 percent throttle in his new Trombetta and Rossi 350cc motor setup. Jim's motor was assembled and tested in Italy by the "GRM Master" himself, Mr. Giuseppi Rossi. It was the third time Jim operated his new Trombetta since he received it from Italy in the late summer. Lee was running his new Darneille hydro with a VRP 350cc motor. I have posted a few pictures here from the 2013 kilo records special event. I'm wearing a bright blue Excalibur Racing T-shirt, tan Red Line baseball cap, and light brown chest waders in the photographs. This was a really fun day topped off with an outstanding Salmon barbeque and sunset at day's end; great friends & great racing competition make this sport very rewarding whether we drive or crew for each other. There were many 1/4-mile and kilo records set during the Devil's Lake 2015 speed record runs, even though there was a "blow-off" due to high wind conditions on both Saturday and Sunday.
Starting Lee Tietze's new 350cc PRO hydro at Devils Lake Kilos, October, 2013 (Credit: Excalibur Racing photo)
Jim Ramsay's O-350 Trombetta hydro roars off a beach start towards a record run (Credit: Excalibur Racing photo)
Diversity at Kilos - Jason Williams prepares to board his record-making D-Mod hydro with Jerry Hopp's Grand National hydro at the dock.
(Credit: Excalibur Racing photo)
Best Picture of the 2011 Racing Season: I placed third in the 250ccH heats at Cullaby in 2011. I would have placed second if I had not jumped the gun by 2 seconds (missed the clock start) at the start line in the second heat. My favorite competition photograph from the 2011 race at Lake Cullaby is shown below. We also attended the American Outboard Federation's Trout Creek Race in western Montana with State Line Outboard Racing Association (SLORA) in 2011. The O-250 Mostes hydro received the "Peoples Choice" award at the event's hydroplane static display boat show. We placed second on Saturday (at the AOF Divisionals race) and first on Sunday (SLORA race) in the "350 PRO Hydro" class at Trout Creek. 2011 was the last year we raced the Mostes.
Al (R-25) and Doug (R-5) battle for second place on Sunday in the Marc Moberly Memorial Race at Lake Cullaby
(Credit - Christine Gleason)
The O-350 UIM class World Cup Championship and the F-350 circuit sanctions are still alive. 350cc hydro has been the most popular PRO class in the Pacific Northwest in past years. Mike Schmidt's MSR Racing Team from Connecticut is now running a 350cc motor on our Mostes hydro - we sold it to him in December, 2011, before the USTS/APBA 2012 PRO hydro season started. Mike said the Mostes is the best turning hydroplane he has ever driven. The Schmidt family is now producing new composite hull hydroplanes from a mold taken from the bottom of the wooden Mostes hull. The new hulls have performed well in Europe and here in the US APBA/USTS PRO circuits over the last two seasons.
Roy Blackwell (red hydro, 61R) planning to overtake Al (15-R) at Silver Lake in OSY400 - 2005 (Credit - TBD)
IN MEMORIUM: A fellow boat racer, Roy Blackwell, lost his battle with cancer in June, 2011. Roy was a true gentleman, a loving dad and grandfather, a great competitor, a devoted husband, and a very good friend to many of us in the racing community. His warm smile, friendly attitude, honesty, ingenuity, and wisdom will be truly missed; he was a great role model to many of us. RIP Roy! See you on the other side, my friend. The 2014 Cullaby Lake Race was named the Roy Blackwell Memorial Regatta to honor Roy's dedication and sportsmanship in APBA racing.
More Boat Racing Pictures: The pictures shown below were taken during the 2005-08 boat racing seasons.
Traveling home from F-250 World's Cup with Mostes on top of S-10 pickup in Oct., 2008 (Crdeit: A. Peffley photo)
Max Cremona racing in UIM competition at San Nazzaro, Italy - June, 2008 (Credit: Cremona Racing Team's Photographer)
To see this boat in action during the UIM 2008 Season, go to this YouTube website at:
(Sorry, I could not get the hotlink function to work on this website page so you must copy the address above and paste it into your browser)
Excalibur II (in original livery colors) racing with the AOF SLORA club PRO 350 hydros at Newport, Idaho, 2005-06
(Credits: G. Hoover & B. Peffley photos)
[Last Updated on 28July2017; Please visit us again to see more racing equipment pictures and comments.]
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