The traditional schedule with two preliminary heats on Sunday returns, and KONG has announced it will televise some of the racing.
A little familiarity is returning to unlimited hydroplane races at Seafair. And to your TV sets.
H1 Unlimited released the schedule Thursday for the races set for Aug. 3-5 on Lake Washington. The Albert Lee Appliance Cup will see the bulk of its racing Sunday, switching back to the schedule it held for decades but experimented with last year.
As usual, qualifying is Friday afternoon and Heat 1A and Heat 1B is Saturday, although at a later time than in past years. Heat 1A is at 5:15 p.m. and Heat 1B is at 5:30 p.m., which is later than past years.
Heat 2A is 11:20 a.m. and Heat 2B is 11:35 a.m. on Sunday with Heat 3A starting at 3:50 p.m. and Heat 3B at 4:05 p.m. The championship heat is 5:30 p.m.
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Sunday’s races are 30-60 minutes later than in years past.
Last year, the schedule was changed with two preliminary heats on Saturday and just one on Sunday, creating a long wait between Heat 3 and the championship heat.
The biggest change to the hydroplane races last year was the lack of coverage on TV. KIRO decided to pull its daylong coverage because of low ratings, marking the first time in the 66-year history of the event it hadn’t been broadcast locally.
KONG-TV announced last month it would broadcast the race from 3-6 p.m. on Sunday. It will also be live streamed on KING5.com. The three-hour window would allow KONG to broadcast Heat 3 and the championship heat live.