Chamberlain to host River City Racin’ this weekendCHAMBERLAIN — Twenty-plus hydroplane boats will travel to Chamberlain’s American Creek Park and Campground this weekend for the Pepsi Racing Power Cup Challenge on the Missouri River.
By: Frannie Sprouls, The Daily Republic
CHAMBERLAIN — Twenty-plus hydroplane boats will travel to Chamberlain’s American Creek Park and Campground this weekend for the Pepsi Racing Power Cup Challenge on the Missouri River.
“This is the most we’ve ever had show up,” said Tom Davis, president of River City Racin’. “In the past, we’ve probably had half that.”
The event site opens at 8:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Opening ceremonies are at 10 a.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m. Sunday, with racing to follow and the site closing at 5 p.m. both days.
The races had to be canceled in 2010 because of flooding. Last year, Gov. Dennis Daugaard came to speak and showcase the races as an event that was continuing despite widespread flooding.
“We lucked out last year,” Davis said. Teams from all over the country are traveling to Chamberlain for the races, with a majority of the teams coming from Washington state. Davis said the biggest reason for the team turnout this year is the contract River City Racin’ signed with the American Power Boat Association.
“They thought this was an ideal place to have a hydroplane event,” Davis said.
This year’s turnout, while bigger than the past three years, was a little disappointing for Dutch Squires, APBA special events chairman. Squires and Davis were hoping to have 30 boats racing this weekend. Some of the teams scheduled to race participated in races last weekend. The result was damage to either the boats or engines.
Four to five teams will race around an oval track five times for multiple heats, earning points with each race won. Those with the most points will race in the final heat on Sunday afternoon for first, second or third place.
But the races aren’t only for the teams — Davis describes it as a big, family friendly event. During the weekend, families can enjoy the Laker’s Car Club Mighty Mo Car Show, a children’s play zone and live entertainment. Single-day tickets are $12 and full weekend tickets are $24. Davis expects good weather over the Father’s Day weekend.
“It’s a great way to spend a hot weekend in June on the river,” he said. “It’s an excuse to get people in South Dakota on the river.”