Snelling Vintage Memorial Event
Dinomytes reminds fans
of racing in Lauterbachs days
(June 2006) Many hydroplane fans come to the
Madison Regatta to watch the elite, turbine-powered Unlimited hydroplanes
sail around the Ohio River. But die-hard boat racing enthusiasts are
attracted by the classic vintage hydroplanes, which perform exhibition
races in between the larger Unlimiteds. These load boats of yesterday
delight the fans and harken spectators back to an earlier era.
Boat RAce Entries
F-222 Hal LeDuc, Opechee
F-77 Tim Settles, Barracuda
G/P and 7 Litres:
N/A Billy Cousins, River Rat
GP-317 Bill Fisk, Irishman
N/A Travis Hickman, Xanadu
J-55 Danny Lyles, Streaker
GP-1001 Gordon Jayne, Dinomytes
GP-200 Bill Gmiener, Lauterbach Special
N-72 Carl Wilson, Tiger
E-3 Gary Vore, Sir Ron III (Ron Snyder driver)
E-207 Ron Taylor, Happy Buddha
E-22 Jon Bartell Jr., Chuckwagon
Jersey Speed Skiffs:
Dave Yeager, Swamp Rat
Robert Francis, Hot Chocolate
Gordon Jayne, 64, of Mentor, Ohio, is among this group
of boat owner-drivers who perform each year at the Madison Regatta.
He will bring his vintage Grand Prix boat, Dinomytes, which
wears the hull number GP-1001. Jayne, who operates an apartment rental
and property maintenance business in Paynesville, Ohio, said he became
interested in the vintage hydroplanes back in the late 1980s.
After 30 years of restoration work on mahogany speedboats, Jayne said
he became bored and needed something else to do as a hobby. He came
upon an old hydroplane, bought it and spent countless hours laboring
to restore it.
I was hooked then on the vintage boats, he said. He eventually
sold that one and waited for an opportunity to buy another one.
His chance came about six years ago. He heard about a vintage hydroplane
that had sat in a garage unused for years, and after looking at it,
he bought it. Jayne has not had to do any restoration on the boat; in
fact, he runs it with the last engine it had when it was a racing champion.
Dinomytes built by legendary boat builder Henry Lauterbach,
who died June 1 at age 87.
He was absolutely thrilled to find such a treasure, and said Lauterbachs
boats at the time he designed and built them were a head and shoulders
above the rest.
Jaynes boat, built during the 1985-1986 season, is the second
of only three Lauterbach Dinomytes and has garnered its
share of racing victories.
Howie Benns, a prominent hydroplane racer during his day, guided the
boat in 1988 to win the World Grand Prix Championship, the Canadian
Grand Prix Championship and the North American Championship. In 1991,
the boat took the North American Champion honors.
Jayne said he loves the thrill of roaring across the water in Dinomytes.
There is nothing that can describe the sheer joy of driving the
vintage boats. He was nervous at first about going as fast as
the boat can go, but said, You just sneak up and take it a bit
at a time, and you will be OK.
He has reached 150 mph in Dinomytes, but said it felt too
fast for him. During its racing heyday, Dinomytes topped
170 mph, but Jayne has never gotten it up to top speed.
Jayne's "Miss Dinomytes"
is a Lauterbach design.
He claims that driving a hydroplane is like riding a rocket,
and that the goal is to keep it straight and stay out of everybody elses
way. You dont really own a vintage boat; you simply keep
it alive for the next generation.
Jayne loves to travel with his boat. He said that while it is expensive,
he has gone to wonderful places and met amazing people that he would
not have without his boat. He will not be traveling much this year because
travel expenses can mount fast, but he plans to take Dinomytes
to at least a few races this season.
Madison is a favorite spot for Jayne. He said he loves coming to the
Madison Regatta because the town is beautiful, the water is great and
there are lots of things to see and do when there. He is looking forward
to getting out on the Ohio River and letting Dinomytes roar.
To view more vintage hydroplanes, visit: www.vintagehydroplanes.com.
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