People from all over California came to Kern County for boat races
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – Some Kern residents caused a stir today by putting their stars to the test in one of the six annual races at Ming Lake.
Today marks the fourth race leaving two more before the end of the year.
The National Jet Boat Association organizes boat races at Ming Lake every year. The races bring people from all over California.
Those at the event say it’s not just a sport, but rather something the whole family can enjoy.
The sounds, the speed and the precision. The pilots aim to arrive as close as possible to the allotted time.
For example, if it is a six second race, the driver who finishes closest to six seconds will be the winner.
“It’s great, I grew up racing and this is my first time competing in boat racing so I love it,” said Gidget Maguire, a spectator.
Other onlookers say motorboats have been with them for decades.
“It brings back a lot of memories to me,” said Patrick Phipps, a spectator. “I was five when my dad bought his first boat and being the youngest of five, that’s all we did. Go to the lake every weekend. Even on Thanksgiving it was raining, we were still waterskiing on the water.
Phipps came to support his friend Brandon Grider, new boat owner and first racer.
Grider ran in a non-competitive class, but says he plans to race competitively in the future.
“Oh, for sure it’s a rush,” said Grider, a new boat racer. “I mean we did 117 miles an hour on this last pass. It puts you back in the seat and you have to hang on for sure and you have to make sure you point it in the right direction and other things like getting it down the track. This is very fun.”
“Being in a boat is like therapy and it’s one of the funniest things I’ve ever done,” said Phipps. “If you’ve never been to a drag boat race, there are two more this year in October and November. I would recommend going out.
The next race is scheduled for October 23 and 24 at Ming Lake. Admission costs $ 10 while children 12 and under are free. The races will start at 8 a.m.