1965 Lake Tahoe
UIM World Championship Regatta

Thunderboat Pot of Gold

Lake Tahoe, Nevada will be the scene of the first sanctioned world championship race for unlimited hydroplanes, September 25.

A $60,000 purse, largest in history, will be paid during the five-day event which opens with qualifications Tuesday, Sept. 21, and climaxes with a full day of racing by the 200-mph thunderboats the following Saturday.

The race has been approved for world marks by the U.I.M., is sanctioned by A.P.B.A., and is sponsored by the South Shore and Tahoe-Douglas Chambers of Commerce.

Under terms of the "Lake Tahoe Plan," hydroplanes will qualify for a period of four days, with the 18 fastest thunderboats competing for prize money and sterling silver trophies. While qualifying, these boats will also be establishing their own starting positions.

Thus, the fastest six boats will run for the World Championship and $36,050 in prize money. The remaining 12 boats will be divided on the basis of qualifying speed into fields for two supporting races.

Qualifiers 7 through 12 will compete for the Ponderosa Trophy and $11,800 in prize money. The 13th through 18th qualifiers will race for the South Shore Trophy and for $5,150 in prize money. Each race will comprise three heats of 15 miles for a total of 45 miles. There will be nine heats of racing over a four and a half hour period with races starting every half hour.

So-called "Indianapolis starts" will be another innovation of the regatta.

The Lake Tahoe World Championship Regatta is the seventh race on a eight race schedule for unlimited hydroplanes in 1965. The season opened with the Dixie Cup at Guntersville, Alabama on June 27 to be followed by the Diamond Cup, July 11, at Coeur d'Alene, Idaho; the Dakota Cup, July 18, at New Town, North Dakota (cancelled); the Gold Cup, August 18, at Seattle, Washington; the Spirit of Detroit Regatta, August 29 at Detroit, Michigan; the Governor's Cup, Sept. 5, Madison, Indiana; the World Championships, Sept. 25, Lake Tahoe, Nevada; and the concluding San Diego Cup, Oct. 3, San Diego, Calif.



Saturday, September 25, 1965, 11:00 a.m.


South Shore, Lake Tahoe. Three-mile course laid in Nevada and California waters.


This race has the first world championship sanction for unlimited hydroplanes ever granted by the Union for International Motorboating. The event is sanctioned by the American Power Boat Association.


Qualifying. September 21-24, 1965. Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. Minimum speed: Two consecutive laps in excess of 90-mph. Purse: $7,000 paid through 18 places. Fastest 18 boats qualify for racing program.

Eligibility. All boats must conform to APBA requirements.

Three Races. All races three 15-mile heats - 45 miles.

World Championship Race. Qualifiers: One through six (on basis of average speed). Purse: $36,050; prizes - $12,300, $8,300, $5,300, $3,800, $3,300, $3,050.

Ponderosa Trophy Race. Qualifiers: Seven through twelve. Purse: $11,800; prizes - $2,800, $2,300, $2,050, $1,800, $1,550, $1,300.

South Shore Trophy Race. Qualifiers: Thirteen through eighteen. Purse: $5, 150; prizes - $1,300, $1,050, $850, $750, $650, $550.

Starts. When qualifying for race program, boats will also qualify for starting position. Fastest qualifier in each race will have pole position in first heat with second fastest in second lane, etc.


Winner of World Championship Race to receive award from Union for International Motorboating, recognizing his boat as world champion, plus World Championship Trophy for one year, plus "keeper" trophy. Other race winners to receive "keeper" trophies. Trophies to all six places in each race.


(Reprinted from Boating News, August 1965, pp.31,45)