Seafair hydroplane race decided by penalty once again, Kelly wins fourth contest
J. Michael Kelly claimed his fourth career hydroplane race title in the Final at the HomeStreet Bank Cup at Seafair on Lake Washington after early leader Jimmy Shane was hit with a penalty for moving before the race started.
It’s the third consecutive race in which Shane saw a win at Seafair taken away via penalty and it’s the fourth consecutive Final at Seafair, which was decided by penalty.
The last Seafair, in 2019, Kelly was the beneficiary of a Shane penalty for going under 80 mph.
Shane eventually finished third in Miss HomeStreet after being dealt a penalty lap while Kelly’s Goodman Real Estate teammate Jeff Bernard took second place.
Dave Villwock in Miss Beacon Plumbing and Jamie Nilsen in Miss The Old Cannery Furniture Warehouse were disqualified for not maintaining a minimum speed before the start.
Kelly made up some ground on Shane in the National High Points title chase with one race to go, San Diego Bayfair on Sept. 16-18.
Shane leads the drivers’ standings by 1,581 points, according to the Seattle Times, which means he’d almost not have to race in San Diego to avoid clinching that title for the seventh time in the past 10 seasons.