This year’s Southern 80 will see new and old ski racers travel to Echuca / Moama to ‘chew the fat’ of what would have been, could have been and what should of happened, some with an element of truth and lots of it with embellishment. This is the 50th year since water ski racing started on the Murray River in Echuca / Moama and it promises to be some exciting action on and off the water.
Saturday morning in Hare Street Echuca will be a sea of people and boats, in the Total Tools Street Display. Hare street between Darling and Anstruther streets will be blocked off, so that people can get up close and personal with the boats and the teams. There will be merchandise on sale, jumping castle for the kids and an outside broadcast from Classic Rock.
Saturday 7th February will see all the social classes leave from 5 mile reserve in Moama and head to the finish line. Note that this is a change in the course, from previous years. There is an exclusive river closure on for the weekend. For specific times and locations please refer to our website www.southern80.com.au or NSW Roads & Maritime website.
First away in the social classes is Carlton Dry Racing, starting at 8am. There are a range of classes in the morning session, including Juniors, 60mph and 70mph classes (the biggest fields for the event). Finishing up the morning’s racing will be the disabled with Alex Handley, Lincoln Budge & Tyler Tannenberg. Following them will the twenty one, Under 10 skiers, the up and coming stars of our sport.
The Victorian Barefoot Club will be providing some entertainment on the water during the break in the ski racing action, so make sure that you catch their skills on water.
You can then also go and visit the Heritage Boat Display which includes some 20 plus boats from a range of years of the Southern 80. Boats such as Island Cooler, Action, Mr Walker. Greg Houston’s Stinga, the Connelly hull which won the race outright in 2007. Recovery , a past winner. Chief, with it’s amazing paint job and many others. Have a wander and look at the boats under the big Marquee – look at video footage from the 80, 90’s and 2000’s on the screens. Chat with past and current ski racers as they mull over their achievement in the Southern 80 from the past and who is going to win in the future.
At 2pm on Saturday – the serious stuff happens on the water. The Beechworth Bakeries Bakers Blitz. First away is Superman, who has won 3 Classic races so far this season – Bridge to Bridge, Grafton Bridge to Bridge and the Hawkesbury 120. Can they get their 4th Classic race for the season? Following them will be Wild Thing, who have stepped up to Superclass this year. They are last year’s Southern 80 winner, a feat which they did from the unlimited class. Can they make it two in a row? Third away will be the reliable and eight time winner of the Southern 80 – Hellrazor. The other boats in Superclass include Merc Force, Sapphire, The Mistress and Top Gun.
Following the Beechworth Bakeries Bakers Blitz will be the President’s Dash, here the top twenty three boats after Superclass are on the water. First away in this class is 99 Psycho Clowns driven by local Jessica Pearse, she will lead the way for Thundernuts, Pigs Arsenal, Temper, Stinga F1 and the rest of the Presidents Dash field.
Following the Baker Blitz & Presidents Dash will see the older skiers of the sport compete in the Veterans and Senior Social classes and do not think that they just amble down the river!!
Sunday sees all the expert classes in the water and running the full course from Torrumbarry to Echuca. The finishing order of the Baker Blitz & Presidents determines the starting order for those boats on Sunday afternoon. At the end of the weekend we will know who takes out the crown for the 2015 Club Marine Southern 80.
Plenty of action to see at Victoria Park Boat Ramp. You can purchase tickets & programs online at www.southern80.com.au Entry to the Victoria Park compound is $20 per day or $30 for a weekend pass.
Programs are now available in Echuca / Moama and the s80 Ski race app will be available by the 1st February on iTunes or Google play for $2.49 We will announce via our Facebook page when the app is available.
For further information about the 2015 Club Marine Southern 80 please contact the Moama Water Sports Club on 03 54806754 or www.southern80.com.au