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  1. #61
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    Long Beach 225 Marathon of Champions - 1971......


    A few shots of the boys going at it on the 1 1/8 mile course in the stadium. A 200 lap event, Renato Molinari looked like an easy winner early, having lapped everyone except Mike Wallace 30 minutes into the race. Then Art Kennedy drove over Renato's boat in a turn, which broke his hand and forced him out of the event. Mercury is still running TI's, I never was much good at identifying what was on the transom of an OMC rig.


    The 1st shot is of Wallace, who won in a Schulze/Evinrude, his 1st outboard victory. The 2nd is of Jimbo, who with Ted May finished 2nd in an OMC/Evinrude.

    Question for you OMC fans.......were OMC tunnels, OMC hydros, McDonalds and Goat boats all built by the same guy?
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-04-2006 at 02:37 PM.

  2. #62
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    Long Beach 225......


    Alan Stinson / Bill Wiles finished 3rd in an Allison/Evinrude with one of those big wings on the rear ( I don't have a photo ). They were followed by Mr.T ( Tom stickle ) / Bill Seebold in a Molinari/ Merc TI....#254 below.

    Mike Downard/Bill Sirois finished 5th in a Molinari/Merc TI....#251
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-04-2006 at 02:40 PM.

  3. #63
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    Long Beach 225.......


    Pictured here are Dick Sherrer #148, who finished 9th in a Glastron-Carlson/Merc 1350 stacker and Fred Hauenstein in a ?????/Evinrude, #35 finishing 10th ( looks somewhat like a Tom Arnstead Marathon hull ).
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-04-2006 at 02:41 PM.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by willabee
    Long Beach 225......


    Alan Stinson / Bill Wiles finished 3rd in an Allison/Evinrude with one of those big wings on the rear ( I don't have a photo ). They were followed by Mr.T ( Tom stickle ) / Bill Seebold in a Molinari/ Merc TI....#254 below.

    Mike Downard/Bill Sirois finished 5th in a Molinari/Merc TI....#251
    How in the world did you balance a boat for both Mike Downard and Bill Sirois to co drive?????

    T2x
    20 Foot Switzer Wing 2 X S3000 (Dust'n the Wind II)
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    (Single engine boats are lacking something)

    16 foot Lee Craft Merc S 3000-(Gold Dust II)
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  5. #65
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    That's easy.......You correct the mistakes you had made at a previous race where, for some unknown reason, Downard and Petty were teamed in a single ......for those that don't know, Petty had about 2' and 200 lbs. on Downard



    Quote Originally Posted by T2x
    How in the world did you balance a boat for both Mike Downard and Bill Sirois to co drive?????

    T2x

  6. #66
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    Paris 6 Hour - 1970

    This race was not a pleasant experience, and I don't say that just because OMC won. Jimbo McConnell did a nose dive in his new, very fast OMC tunnel .....Cesare Scotti hit a barge and sank ( neither driver badly hurt ).....Jim Merten did a nose dive and suffered kidney damage.....and worst of all, Don Clark flipped and was taken down the tunnel of a boat behind him and was badly hurt. All of this, plus an "incident" that may have unknowingly been the beginning of the end of the relationship between Molinari and Mercury.

    I think we ran 6 boats.....Renato/Wilson in a 17' extended transom marathon, Stickle/Clark, Hering/Downard, Pruett/Berghauer (Denny), Rasini/Tobino in new 17' marathons and Merten/Sirois in a 16'sprint. We took a stake truck, built solid sides, put all of our Twister engines for both Paris and Berlin in it, and loaded the 16' sprint ( the Miami 225 winner ) on top and shipped it to Italy.

    All of the rigging and testing was done at Molinari's shop on Lake Como. Other than my having to learn to drink tea and exchange "bloody hoorays" with Jackie Wilson every morning, things went pretty smoothly. I even skipped lunch with the boys one day and took one of the Paris boats for a drive all around the lake, it was just beautiful. The day before we were to head for Paris, all of the boats were ready except Renato's. He seemed to be "tweaking" and was being very secretive. After a test run, he would pull the boat out of the water and send it to the second floor (we were all on the first) and wouldn't say anything.

    The Italians always made the arrangements for transporting the boats to Paris, so we were ready to catch a plane. Before we left, I asked Renato if he needed anything and he told me he did not. We headed for Paris to relax for a day and wait for the boats...........to be continued

    Here's a shot of the winner, Johnny Sanders/Tom Posey and one of the 2nd place finishing Molinari/Wilson rig.....
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-06-2006 at 01:01 PM.

  7. #67
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    Paris 6 Hour - 1970 ( continued )......


    On Friday, I ran into Levio Prada at the hotel and he informed me that all of the boats had arrived safely. I then told the guys what time I wanted everyone to meet in the pits on Saturday. When I got there, some of the guys had already arrived and were gathered in deep conversation. As I approached, it was obvious that they weren't very happy about something. I asked what was up and Merten told me to go look at his boat.

    There it was, the 16'sprint, just like it was when we left Italy except for one little change......the powerhead was missing! Upon futher inquiry, I learned that Renato had suspected that we had put our best powerhead on the Merten/Sirois boat, so he decided to try it during our absence. Although we had not done that, he felt that his test results confirmed his suspicions and he kept the powerhead. I don't where he got this idea, I think we all really liked Renato ( I still do ) and he was the winner of this event the last two years, so common sense would dictate that if we had a "best powerhead", we would put it on his boat. To me, he had done the unthinkable ( you just don't mess with someone elses' race boat - especially a team boat when you're all on the same team ) and I told Mert that I was going to put the powerhead back where it came from.

    Enter Garbrecht.......he instructed me to leave it alone and to put a new one from the truck on Mert's boat. I told him that I didn't like the idea of the tail waging the dog, but he made it clear that we were to make no waves over this issue. When I infomed Jim of the plan, he said to me privately that he didn't know where and didn't know when, but " one day the Prince will get his due "........he was very angry. None of us knew then that a few months later, Mert would become the manager of the outboard race team and one of his priority projects was the development of the Twistercraft..........coincidence???

    Here is a shot of the OMC tunnel that Jimbo did his nose dive in.....he passed Renato on the 2nd lap, but then had to fall back as the water got much rougher. The 2nd picture is of Arie deBoom ( from Amsterdam ), who with his son, finished 3rd in a Molinari/Johnson.
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    Last edited by willabee; 11-06-2008 at 04:15 PM.

  8. #68
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    Six Hours of Berlin - 1970

    Telling you about this race is going to cause me to go off of my diet because, as you will see, I'm about to eat a lot of crow

    The race is run the Sunday after the Paris 6 Hour. This time we run 5 boats because we lost the Don Clark Molinari in the accident at Paris. The driver pairings also changed a little. We put fresh Twisters on the Molinari's of Renato/Hering, Sirois/Wilson and Rasini/Stickle ( I think that's how they were paired ).

    Then ( here comes my crow dinner ) we install a new powerhead with 6 rectangular shaped carbs and a bulbous cast exhaust system on the Pruett/Berghauer boat. But hey, we're not done.......we then install another new powerhead on the Downard/Tobino rig. This one ( here comes more crow ) has 9 carbs........3 where they belong and 6 more poking through the cowl from the transfer covers !! So much for my shot about two powerheads in Europe with about 57 carbs on them .......Mark75H, looks like it's my turn to say that you were more correct than me I still don't remember squat about those powerheads and I probably helped install them. Never saw the 9 carber again and we know the 6 carb evolved into the C6.

    Well. the 2 boats with the trick stuff didn't run worth a darn, so we really had 3 boats in the race. They pretty much ran 1-2-3 for the 1st couple of hours and then the McConnell/Hill Molinari/Johnson started to strut it's stuff. They won followed by Renato/Hering. There was an interesting piece of strategy played out in the last hour by Renato. Hill had a big lead and Renato wasn't going to be able to catch him, so he slowed down. When Hill caught him to put a lap on him, Renato started to race again. They went side by side for a couple of laps and Hill got out of shape a few times. That was Renato's idea, to see if Hill would race with him and make a mistake......it almost worked.

    "BURP...burp...burp...Burp........excuse me, must be that darn crow
    Last edited by willabee; 01-25-2008 at 01:18 PM.

  9. #69
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    Miami 225 - July 1971


    To the best of my knowledge ( or lack of same ), this is the 1st race that a C6 ran competitively. We know that the first one appeared at Berlin in 1970 ( my ultimate goal is to complete the Big Engine list ), but I can't tell you if the Morgan 6 carb manifold was married to a 1350 or a 1400 block for that race. Mr.T recalls that he and a second boat were sent to Lake Tahoe with a C6's prior to this Miami race, but he said they didn't run worth a darn and were replaced by Twister's for that event..... those were 1400's.

    We ran four C6's in Miami ( Hering, Molinari, Stickle and Downard ), as well as some Twisters and some 1350 water-injected stackers! All to no avail as Jimbo won driving an OMC tunnel with an Evinrude. However, as Jimbo led the 1st two-thirds of the race, Hering passed him several times as they went down the backstretch, seemingly with ease. Hering then took the lead and held it until 8 laps remained and then had a battery failure. After that performance, all engineering efforts were focused on what was to become the TII.

    Here's a shot of Hering in a 17' Molinari sprint, #457 and one of Renato in a slightly different design of that boat, #554 - Miss Titti ( he finished 7th )........both powered by the C6.
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-13-2006 at 11:45 AM.

  10. #70
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    Miami 225 - July 1971


    Here is a shot of Bill Seebold driving Old Blue ( I think Mr.T gave it that name which came from an old Chevy stationwagon Tom used to race around Oshkosh ). I believe this was the 1st single Seebold drove for the factory. Since he is running an older boat with a stacker, and 4 of our guys had new boats with C6 power, it's safe to say that this was early in his relationship with Mercury and he had not yet reached his "top gun" status.

    Garbrecht and I were coming back from a trip out west and we stopped at a race in Illinois to watch Seebold driving Les Brown's 7 litre Long Gone. Gary talked to Bill after the race and I think the next move was to put a 20' Jones together for him to run at Havasu in 1970, maybe his first factory drive.

    Anyway, here he is finishing 2nd at the 225 followed by Billy Don Pruett using another 1350 water-injected stacker.
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-19-2006 at 11:57 AM.

  11. #71
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    1968 1250bp

    Just got this from one of our Parts employees. We still have some of this around.
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  12. #72
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    More Singles.....


    #119 - Bill Sirois - driving Kenny Kitson's 17' or 18' Kitson/Miles at Miami in 1971....I don't recall for sure why Sirois is driving instead of Kitson, maybe someone reading this does. The other thing that is puzzeling is that post #47 on this thread shows Kitson driving a boat of his own manufacture powered by OMC in 1970. This boat is powered by Mercury and is of a completely different design than the 18' twin. Did he partner with someone to build boats in 1970 and then partner with Fred Miles in 1971? Did he only run OMC's for one year? Maybe one of you guys that talks with Kenny can ask him those questions.

    #S-36 - Art Kennedy,Jr. ( here's your picture Specboatops ) - 18' Molinari "rocker bottom" powered by one of the four 1350 powerheads running their 1st race at Havasu in 1968....he finished 6th overall and 3rd single. Those 4 boats were the last of the "good" 18'ers that came over from Italy. They were replaced by the 17' sprints and marathons. Two or three of them sat in our yard at Merc in Oshkosh for a year or so, and then were put up for sale.......$100.00......makes you want to cry doesn't it.
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    Last edited by willabee; 01-13-2006 at 01:24 PM.

  13. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by willabee
    More Singles.....


    #119 - Bill Sirois - driving Kenny Kitson's 17' or 18' Kitson/Miles at Miami in 1971....I don't recall for sure why Sirois is driving instead of Kitson, maybe someone reading this does. The other thing that is puzzeling is that post #47 on this thread shows Kitson driving a boat of his own manufacture powered by OMC in 1970. This boat is powered by Mercury and is of a completely different design than the 18' twin. Did he partner with someone to build boats in 1970 and then partner with Fred Miles in 1971? Did he only run OMC's for one year? Maybe one of you guys that talks with Kenny can ask him those questions.

    .
    1. Is that a Kitson...or a Sirois built Zonker Craft?

    2. Kitson started out popping Glastron Molinari's and later worked with Miles.

    T2x
    20 Foot Switzer Wing 2 X S3000 (Dust'n the Wind II)
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    (Single engine boats are lacking something)

    16 foot Lee Craft Merc S 3000-(Gold Dust II)
    (The exception proves the rule)
    Obsolete and Proud of it

  14. #74
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    Zonkercraft

    Peacock/Gagen had Al Martin building wooden Zonkers ( Milesmasters ) in Florida.....Kitson/????? built glass Kitson's ( Milesmasters ) in Missouri.......and, Sirois/Janish also built glass Zonkers ?


    Quote Originally Posted by T2x
    1. Is that a Kitson...or a Sirois built Zonker Craft?

    2. Kitson started out popping Glastron Molinari's and later worked with Miles.

    T2x

  15. #75
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    I think that the Scorpions were also based on the Milesmaster boats.

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