The planet's most recognized powerboat racing series, the UIM F1 H2O World Championship tour, announced today the four nominees for this year’s Hall of Fame and the coveted 'Lap of Honor' Award for 2012.
'This year marks the fourth class of people who have truly made a mark in this great sport over the past four decades and beyond,' said longtime head of the UIM F1 H2O World Championship as promoter of the series Nicolo de San Germano.
'This Lap of Honor Trophy salutes individuals who date towards the inception of the sport back in the early 1960's and with every passing year it gets more and more exciting when we make our nominations. This 2012 class is special and I hope everyone who loves this sport as much as me will take the time to study the candidates and then cast their vote for these truly special individuals.'
There are many well deserving candidates to be offered a place in the Hall of Fame. Four individuals have been selected and now the media members along with the general public will be allowed to cast their ballots for two of the four nominees' for the 2012 class.
The official ballot will be placed shortly on the homepage of the official website
of the UIM F1 H2O World Championship and web viewers will get their chance to vote for their two favorite legends.
The election for the new hall of fame members will stay open until the week of the next round of the championship in Liuzhou, China on the 1st of October for the Grand Prix of China. At that time, the new inductees will be announced during the Grand Prix weekend festivities.
Here are the four recipients for the fourth Annual Hall of Fame Lap of Honor Trophy for 2012:
David Burgess - Boat Builder (GB): The designer of over 45 World Championship boats from monohulls to F1...David started building boats at the age of 16 and worked for famous boat builders Bill Shakespeare and Freddy Miles before venturing out on his own...In the mid-1970's he had winning drivers piloting his hulls in the OZ, OE and NE Classes at the British Grand Prix in one weekend!...Has won numerous Championships in the Formula Grand Prix, F1 and in North America especially in the 1970's and 1980's...Has over 17 F3 World Championships...Last F1 World Champion to drive his boat was friend Jonathan Jones of Wales who took the title in Abu Dhabi in December of 1998...Is now a consultant with Jones on boat designs for Dragon Raceboats.
David Parkinson - Promoter (GB): The man who kept the Mercury Marine Racing dream alive for 16 years, David was the promoter of the Formula Grand Prix and UIM F1 World Championship thru the 1993 season...He is largely responsible for expanding F1 powerboat racings geographical boundaries from strictly a European and North American sport...He hosted worldwide venues including South Africa, Malaysia, Singapore, Russia and Abu Dhabi by the time he resigned at the end of the 1993 campaign...Was Mercury Marine's point man when it came to promoting powerboat racing worldwide with the two litre race engine against Outboard Marine Corporation (OMC) V8 power plants back in the 1970's and 1980's.
Bob Spalding - Driver (GB): On of Great Britain's greatest racing drivers...Bob didn't start racing until he was 20 years old...Won the 1985 World Championship...Earned four victories and seven podiums in his four and one-half years of racing on the UIM F1 circuit...He also captured titles prior to the World Series in 1979 and 1980...Was a 4-time Winner of the Paris six-hour event...A F2 title holder as well...Won the prestigious Parker (Arizona) Enduro in 1980...Became the Test Driver for Mercury Racing in 1972...Teamed up with Cees van der Velden and raced his boats as both a Mercury and later OMC driver...retired after a severe crash in Seville, Spain in 1985...Passed away in December of 1997.
Cees Van der Velden - Driver / Boat Builder (NED): One of the giants of the sport, Cees was a seven-time World Champion in his 24 year racing career...The original 'Flying Dutchman' he hit his prime in the 1970's winning the ON class titles in 1974, 1975 and 1979 while winning the Continental ON titles in 1974, 1976, 1978 and 1979...He also captured the Continental OZ title in 1977, 1978, 1980 and 1981...Had eight wins and 15 podiums in his short UIM F1 career which ties him for 13th all-time...One of the world's best boat builders in the 1970's and 1980's he built hulls for Mercury and later starting in 1974 for OMC until his retirement...Cees won the very last race he entered in Beaumont, Texas in the fall of 1989...In 1990 he joined the UIM as Race Commissioner and instituted many of the race circuit ideas that are in place today...He died in December of 2006. F1H20 website