Andrew Tate hoists the Bill Muncey Cup during the awards ceremony at the 2018 HomeStreet Bank Bayfair.
The final for the 54th annual HomeStreet Bank San Diego Bayfair was won by Andrew Tate driving the U-9 Delta/Realtrac with five-lap final average speed of 143.605 mph on Mission Bay’s 2-1/2 mile racecourse.
It was an anticlimactic championship final that began when Jimmy Shane in the U-1 Miss HomeStreet never left the dock and failed to start. Shane had amassed the most points this weekend and was to have started in lane one.
Shane’s failure to started moved Tate to lane one where he battled several laps with Tom Thompson in the U-11 Reliable Diamond Tool presents J&D’s.
Brian Perkins driving the U-21 PayneWest Insurance went dead-in-the-water in turn two on lap one, making room for Tate and Thompson to battle deck-to-deck.
Dustin Echols driving the U-440 Bucket List Racing quickly fell back to avoid the spray of the two lead boats.
With the thousand of fans on the beaches on their feet cheering the two leaders, Thompson slowed to a stop in turn two after he lost a propeller blade, heavily damaging the back of his H1 Unlimited hydroplane.
Over the oohs-and-ahhs of the crowd with Thompson’s misfortunes, Echols quickly moved into a distance second behind Tate while Perkins restarted and moved into third.
At the end of five laps, Tate finished in first place followed by Echols and Perkins.
Tate said after, “A weird final to weird season pretty much sums it up.”
He continued, “It was actually pretty rough out there, surprisingly, then Brian went dead in corner unfortunately. He was up running in front of Tommy and me for a few laps mixing it up for us for a little bit.”
In a show of great sportsmanship, Tate’s team owner brought the ecstatic Echols one of their celebratory bottles of champagne for his team shower him.
After placing second, the best Echols and his team have every done, he said, “Pretty cool!”
“After the start of the race I kind of backed out of it when we started to get some of the saltwater in our engine and then one-by-one they started dropping and then Kelly (Stocklin) started yelling on the radio, ‘keep the engine going and keep the salt out of the motor.’”
In the end, Echols said he thinks the last couple laps were his fastest in the boat.
Tate said, “It was unfortunate that the guy who had the most points this weekend and was to be in lane one, Jimmy Shane didn’t go out. We want to beat them on the racecourse. It’s no fun for anyone when we are all not out there.”
Bill Muncey Cup Championship Final
1) U-9 Delta/Realtrac, Andrew Tate, 143.605 mph avg.
2) U-440 Bucket List Racing, Dustin Echols, 124.993 mph avg.
3) U-21 PayneWest Insurance, Brian Perkins 117.050 mph avg.
DNF U-11 Reliable Diamond Tool presents J&D’s, Tom Thompson
DNS U-1 Miss HomeStreet, Jimmy Shane
Fastest Lap: # 2, U-11 J&D’s 147.21 mph
Preliminary Heat 2A
1) Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 149.228 mph
2) Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 142.931 mph
3) Tom Thompson, U-11 Reliable Diamond Tool present J&D’s, 142.448 mph
Fast Lap: #3, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, Jimmy Shane 153.152 mph
Preliminary Heat 2B
1) Andrew Tate, U-9 Delta/Realtrac, 137.263
2) Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 CARSTAR powers Miss Rock, 135.788 mph
3) Dustin Echols, U-440 Bucket List Racing, 131.476 mph
Fast Lap: #2, U-9 Delta/Realtrac, Andrew Tate, 141.678 mph
Preliminary Heat 3A
1) Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 137.876 mph
2) Dustin Echols, U-440 Bucket List Racing, 137.165 mph
3) Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 CARSTAR powers Miss Rock, 118.821 mph
Fast Lap: #2, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, Brian Perkins, 140.200 mph
Preliminary Heat 3B
1) Andrew Tate, U-9 Delta/Realtrac, 150.304mph
2) Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 147.713 mph
DNF Tom Thompson, U-11 Reliable Diamond Tool presents J&D’s
Fast Lap: #3 U-1 Miss HomeStreet, Jimmy Shane, 151.739 mph