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Old 09-06-2007, 03:23 PM   #21
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A Sportscar At A Truck Race!

Great fun reading all the comments about power-to-weight, top speed, etc., etc., regarding the Powerboat P1 series, particularly as I have a vested interest in the Fountain Wolrdwide entry that didn't do a bad job in Naples. I suppose that when you're in a position to start with a clean sheet of paper, putting together what is, as far as I'm concerned, the ultimate P1 Evo package, can be great fun and also quite an arduous task.

First you read the P1 rules which, we all admit, aren't the best written but then most of the stuff inside the UIM book is badly worded and needs a complete re-write. It was originally in French! I felt that with an Evo weight limit starting of at 4250 kilos (which means both your engines musn't have more than 607.14 BHP each) P1 was best suited to using American product. The States is a one stop shop and great value with the dollar so weak against sterling and the euro.

First came our engine package and I viewed Ilmor, with their incredible motor sport background (designed and built F1 engines for Mercedes and Indy engine for Honda), as a better option than Mercury where you'd be just another customer. Ilmor, with the Viper V10, were actively looking at breaking into the US high-peformance market and I convinced them that they shouldn't forget Europe as an outlet. They agreed. They would endorse the programme because it allowed them, as a company with moral values, to use production based engines. We elected to pick their 625 HP rated MV-10 (power taken at the crankshaft) over the newer 7-10 because carrying the additional 525 kilos of ballast would affect our accelleration out of the many turns on the P1 courses. We chose a wide rev band and massive torque (there are no rules against torque) instead of outright power. The engine is all aluminium. It has given us greater driveability and instant throttle response being a normally aspirated motor. We have to weigh in at 4375 kilos and we have to carry a lot of lead ballast which has been built into the overall design. I believe we were 100 kilos over that limit after both races according to the P1 technical guys.

When Fountain Worldwide (the independantly owned international sales arm run by Craig Wilson and his family) agreed to join forces following a meeting we had at the Miami Boat Show in February, it was agreed that while the existing 40' SuperVee hull was the best bet, a new boat had to be built from scratch for the simple reason that a new SuperVee weighs 8000 lbs (US rules) and for the P1 rules, we needed to be a lot heavier. So bearing in mind the rough conditions that can be found over here in Europe, the hull was built like a brick outhouse.

Arneson surface drives, with the SCS external drop box system, were preferred to the Mercury Mk.VI drive system and that was that really. It did mean that there was no way we'd be ready for the first race in Malta and we only just made Naples, the race boat arriving on the back of a truck still shrink wrapped from its TransAtlantic crossing.

Putting James Sheppard alongside Craig Wilson was an obvious call because the guy was mega quick in the Honda series, showed his bravery in Key West last November (when he beat the works Fountain team) and exudes immense self confidence. His also has a loyal sponsor in 'King of Shaves'.

As someone said to me after Naples, 'you took a sportscar to a truck race!'
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Old 09-06-2007, 04:27 PM   #22
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Donít mean to be condescending but very well done Chris. That is the best write up I have read for some time. Well thought through and logical process to be the best boat on the circuit. Most people canít be bothered to explain that process and I admire you for doing it and to putting it into print. Great reading for us old enís who used to race and probably great for those who are about to or even are!
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Old 09-06-2007, 05:36 PM   #23
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very well written and direct to the point report by Mr Witty
puts to bed any questions anyone may of had.
I feel maybe if Mr Manchester had been as open and direct with his answers about Hotboats it may of had more people interested
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Old 09-06-2007, 08:52 PM   #24
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Very interesting informative post, even for us spectators, on how it all jelled together and the various motives behind the ideas, thank you.............( there are no rules against torque )........... sent a long email a long time back to P1 saying the lambo engine would be very uncompetitive as hp was increased in the unit and the same for other big block petrol motors of high hp as there torque figures would proportionally decrease against the rated hp, thereby a 900hp petrol unit would becoming uncompetitive against a 900hp diesel unit because of the enormous torque advantage the diesel gained...a petrol boats ideal was to stay as close to the 4250-4500kg weight as possible 600-650Hp range as torque to hp will be greater for the disadvantaged petrol unit, and petrols advantage more amplified in this range, although the only way to fight this petrol disadvantage would be to use forced induction thereby allowing a petrol unit to gain more torque per hp especially around the 600-650hp mark (only applies to Evo class) ...just my take on things hope no one takes an offense to my thoughts
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Old 10-06-2007, 09:11 AM   #25
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And here's a pic of 1 of the motors!
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Old 10-06-2007, 12:32 PM   #26
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Stunning looking boat and much smaller ( height ) than I expected.
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Old 17-06-2007, 07:07 PM   #27
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Regarding my previous post on power to weight and types, I have often wondered why bullet racing has 2x425hp diesels that would allow a weight limit I assume of 3825 kg...when it is possible the boats weight is unlikely to be less than 4500kg...I would have thought in order to be competitive a min of 500hp each engine would be the requirement

PS answers on a post card please........
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