Day of thunder in Port Angeles allows hydroplanes to reign

PORT ANGELES — Greg Hopp is back.

Near silence on Saturday turned to a joyous roar on Sunday as the hydroplane races got in a full day of activity on Port Angeles Harbor, where Hopp’s racing team has dominated in five of the past six years.

There were only two races Saturday because of strong winds and choppy water at the sixth annual Strait Thunder presented by Victoria Express.

“The ground swells were just awful,” John Lynch, spokesman for Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association (ULHRA), said.

“It wasn’t raceable; very dangerous.”

But it was near a perfect day Sunday with the sun peaking through clouds and almost no wind.

Hopp reclaimed the Unlimited Light national championship for the fifth time in six years while last year’s surprise winner, Kayleigh Perkins, finished second in the final race and for the season.

In other divisions, 28-year-old Dustin Echols of Woodinville won the first-ever Thunderboat national championship, while Bud McKay of Belfair won his third consecutive 8-Cylinder Lighter than Lights national title and Brian Perkins of Seattle took the 4-Cylinder Lighter than Lights national crown.

However, in 4-Cylinder Lighter than Lights, Dave Solway of Port Angeles won his first-ever ULHRA race by claiming the Strait Thunder title in his division.

More in News

Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group

The Rev. ClayOla Gitane, rector at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, places signs and teddy bears in memory of the 21 victims of Tuesday's mass shooting in Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
Church hosts candlelight service for Texas school shooting victims

Prayer vigil tonight will include an interfaith service

c
NWI: Purchase protects Discovery Creek headwaters

Ninety-one acres bought from Rayonier

Dr. Gib Morrow, Dr. Allison Berry and OESD Superintendent Greg Lynch.
Public health officers honored for COVID-19 work

Greg Lynch, superintendent at the Olympic Educational Service District 114,… Continue reading

Charges to be urged after report of toy guns at schools

Students allegedly pose on campuses over weekend

Memorial Day edition available online only

Memorial Day is a federal holiday and the U.S. Postal Service does… Continue reading

Memorial Day ceremonies set Monday

Flags to be placed on veterans’ graves on Saturday

Six-car collision sends two to hospital, closes road

A six-vehicle chain reaction wreck on state Highway 104 on… Continue reading

Piper Pettit, project manager for the state Department of Transportation, speaks to the Port Angeles Business Association on Tuesday about upcoming fish passage projects that will significantly impact traffic in the city. (Ken Park/Peninsula Daily News)
Culvert plan in Port Angeles told

Construction expected summer 2023 at earliest

Most Read