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Drag boats racers get up to 100 mphSubmitted: 07/23/2016

PELICAN LAKE - For the second year in a row, drag boat racers gathered in Pelican Lake on Saturday at Gerrit's Lakeview Inn, right on the water to test their skills.

The course was only 1,000 feet and boats reached neared 100 mph. The race drew people from all over, including Dane Esser from down in Cassville, Wisconsin. He likes coming up to Pelican Lake for this event for a lot of reasons.

"Adrenaline rush, I guess. There's a challenge to different setups and your speeds," Esser said. "Down home, we don't have a lot of races like that, so we have to travel six hours north for something like this. And just the competition, getting to know everybody, the friendship."

Seeing the boats go that fast was pretty cool. But there is a huge safety factor involved as well. The boats can flip over, so the drivers and race organizers have to prepare for that.

"The wind has a big play," Esser said. "Today we have a little bit of headwind coming in. Most of these boats are tunnel halls, meaning there's a cup underneath of them. If the wind's coming in, you have to be careful. There's a trim switch on the boat. If you can see next to my helmet there, there's a trim indicator that goes up and down. Like if I go over five on it, the fifth height, then I'm starting to play with fire and I could blow over."

The fire department and EMS were there just in case something like that happened. There were also lots of boats and people on the beach by the restaurant there to take in the action.


Story By: Katie Leszcynski

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