As voted on by the fans, the best heat of the decade goes to the 2018 Guntersville Hydrofest Final Heat, the first Final for a then brand-new event that has become a fan favorite and a favorite for every team in the sport! This Final Heat was a showdown between Jimmy Shane driving the U-1 “Miss HomeStreet” and Andrew Tate driving the U-9 Auxier Marketing/Delta RealTrac.
The heat began with Shane in lane two and Tate in lane three, but by lap two, Shane has moved to the inside, with Tate on his hip in lane two. Shane led most of lap one, but then trailed Tate for the remainder of the heat, literally painting the apex buoys with his left sponson, until barely edging ahead at the exit of the final turn on lap five. However, Tate’s speed advantage exiting the turn allowed him to pull ahead on the short run to the checkered flag to take the victory by just over a boat length.
In the Race Rewind video below, PA announcer Brad Luce said what everyone in attendance knew: it truly did not get any better than this!
Relive the best heat of the decade from multiple perspectives and enjoy some of the best driving in the history of the sport:
Onboard the U-9 (cowl cam):
Onboard the U-9 (tail cam):
Andrew Tate’s Helmet:
Onboard the U-1 (cowl cam):
Onboard the U-1 (tail cam):
To gain another perspective of the precision of Jimmy Shane’s driving in this heat, check out the screenshots from the onboard camera to see how close he was to the apex buoy on every lap after he moved to lane 1: