Last weekend was a big one for the Blue Water Casino on the Colorado River. The Lucas Oil Drag Boat
series was in town for their first of two stops at this venue and it didn't disappoint. Having been my
first time at this venue, I gotta say I was thoroughly impressed. Compared to the Wild Horse Pass
Motorsports Park in Chandler, this venue felt like I was on vacation. Not to say that Wild Horse is bad
because its not. But for what I was here to do "Shoot Photos of the Dragboats" the Parker riverfront
added that extra element of scenery that gives your shots that extra punch.
Like you, I also wonder how I've gone 16 years since my frist trip to Havasu without stopping at the
Bluewater. I mean, I've been there countless times for the Parker 425, but for what ever reason, I've
never taken a few minutes to walk around to the back. I had no idea of the jewel I was missing on just
the other side. Needless to say, I'll be making a recreational trip back with the family.
Unlike Wild Horse, shooting from the shores of the Bluewater mean you are standing amongst the
spectators. Even with a media vest, the vantage point is no better than that of a standard spectator
ticket. Great for spectators, but a little challenging for photography. Never the less, I usually try to
make the best of it, including some of you in my shots. After all, without spectators, there would be
no sports. Right? The great part about this, however, is that you meet the coolest people. For
instance, on Saturday, while standing on the patio, I had my lens pointed over the shoulder of Jeff
Quigley, owner of Quigley's Kustom Kolors. Several boats that I shot this weekend were painted by
Jeff. Also a part of the conversation was Jerry Aggus with "The Shop" - a local custom automotive
shop in Lake Havasu. Both of these guys had some great stories and recollections of the "good ole
days", and it was fun chatting with them about the industry.
Probably the most helpful people I met this weekend were Leesa and Barry Radford (Leesa QT on
RDP) and Chris and Debra Hall (Beer Run and Mrs Beer Run on RDP). While fighting to find an
unobstructed view to shoot the Top Fuel boats, Leesa cleared the way and insisted I take her spot at
the rail. Many of these shots are attributed to her generosity and great attitude, so we can all thank
her for that. To make things better, They even bought me a beer at lunch. On that 90 degree day with
all my gear on, it was like a gift from the gods.
The races, of course were great. There was a great turnout of boats in all classes. No less than 6 Top
Fuel Hydros ran last weekend, with Nitrochondriac taking home the win in the final round with a
pass of 270 mph. An insane speed to travel over water. Of course, the other classes were competitive
as well and offered a lot of fantastic racing action. Between the beautiful scenery, great boat racing,
and fun people, I'm already looking forward to the return of the Lucas Oil Dragboats to Parker in the
(Nitrochondriac starting it's 270 mph pass)
Next stop for me is Desert Storm. Until then. have a great weekend and happy boating!!
Photo's and Words : Erick Bryner
To see the rest of the pics from the day please click HERE To visit our forums!