U-8 Boitano Homes

J. Michael Kelly
J. Michael KellyDriver

J. Michael Kelly will once again pilot the U-8 for the Strong Racing team, paired with his long-time best friend Corey Peabody, who will drive the U-9 in 2022. Kelly holds 23 World Records in various classes, has won 13 National Championships, is a 7-time APBA Hall of Champions inductee, a 14-time H1 Unlimited race winner, and APBA Gold Cup winner. He is known as one of the most consistent starters on the circuit, an advantage for the team. Many have compared his starts to the late-great driver, Bill Muncey.

Kelly scored his first H1 Unlimited hydroplane win at the 2009 inaugural U.I.M. World Championship Oryx Cup in Doha, Qatar. With two race wins in 2021  (Guntersville and San Diego), Kelly picked up his first Driver’s High Points Championship. Kelly’s goal this year is to repeat that feat, as well as winning the U-1 hull number, signifying the H1 Unlimited boat national championship, something he has never been able to accomplish. His 19-year career makes him one of the most seasoned drivers on the circuit.

Kelly’s hydroplane for 2022 is the former Ellstrom U-16/96 hull that was new in 2014 and previously driven by Kip Brown, Jean Theoret and most recently by JW Myers in 2017. The hull was purchased by Darell and Vanessa Strong in the 2020 off-season. Paired with the U-9 Jones Racing hull, the Strong Racing team is poised to add to the three race wins notched in their inaugural season in what is certain to be a hotly contested 2022 campaign.

Darrell & Vanessa Strong
Darrell & Vanessa Strong

Darrell & Venessa Strong were  sponsors for 8 years prior to purchasing two of the fastest boats on the circuit from Ellstrom Racing (U-8) and Jones Racing (U-9) and assembling his own team in late 2020. The team won its first race in Guntersville and went on to win 3 out of 4 races in the 2021 season, giving J. Michael Kelly the Driver’s High Point Championship in the process.

Professionally, Darrell has been a consulting broker specializing in employee benefits since 1985 and is among the top licensed agents in the Northwest – in the top 5% in Washington and #1 with PayneWest Insurance.

As the leader of Select Benefit Systems and a leader in the industry, he has developed trusts in two niche markets and serves on the Broker Advisory Board for Premera. Darrell consults with clients to help design and develop innovative benefit plans.

Boitano Homes

 Building your dreams since 1989
(425) 836-4826
1427 E Lake Sammamish Parkway
Sammamish, WA 98075

Lynx Healthcare

(509) 283-1249
Lynx Healthcare is a multi-disciplinary group that is dedicated to building and linking health centers in a way that creates more in-house services than other healthcare providers. Their three locations in Kennewick, Richland, and Spokane Valley, Washington, are explicitly dedicated to pain management.

Originally founded in 2008 as a private, single-specialty clinic, Lynx Healthcare now consists of multiple treatment centers, providing the highest quality care throughout Washington and New Mexico, covering a wide variety of specialties.

PayneWest Insurance
300 Bradley Blvd., Richland, WA 99352
Relationships matter to us, and unlike your best friend’s most recent tinder date, we’re not afraid of commitment. Understanding your insurance needs starts with understanding you, your business and your assets. Maintaining your trust also ensures ongoing dialog as lives and needs change.

79 Aaron Drive, Richland, WA 99352
Mid-Columbia’s best technology and copier provider. Get customized recommendations to streamline business processes and manage cost.

Atomic Screenprinting & Embroidery
329 W. Columbia Drive, Kennewick, WA 99336
Screen Print – Embroidery – Signs
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Swampy’s BBQ Sauce & Catering
325 E. Columbia Dr., Kennewick, WA. 99330
SWAMPY’S BBQ SAUCE and Catering is a family owned business, with a history that goes back over 35 years and a vision to sweep great flavor across the U.S.

Desert Food Mart
0809 E. Kennedy Rd., Benton City, WA 99320
We are the Friendliest gas station around . We have a full menu, which includes breakfast, lunch and dinner. Restaurant is open 24 hours a day.

Cougar Cave Expresso
0809 E. Kennedy Rd., Benton City, WA 99320
We are a local business located on the outskirts of Benton City. It is our intention to serve the community by bringing the absolute best that we can offer thru high quality products, hospitality and sweet deals for on the go!

Moon Security
Moon Security Services delivers innovative, integrated, electronic security, and life safety systems for homes and businesses.
Our team is committed to giving customers the most professional installation, monitoring, and after-installation support services in the industry.
We’re ranked as a leading security solutions provider in the U.S., with expertise spanning security and fire alarms, video and access control systems, cybersecurity and identity theft protection.

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We are a commercial internet provider offering the most reliable and fastest
business internet speeds in Washington

Brian Hajny
Brian HajnyCrew Chief

Brian has been involved in H1 Unlimited on almost every level except as a driver: Crew member, Crew Chief, Referee and even Chief Referee.

As the Crew Chief for both Strong Racing Team boats, Brian has assembled a crew that won 3 out of 4 races during the 2021 season, resulting in the H1 Driver’s High Points Championship for J. Michael Kelly in the U-8 Miss Tri-Cities.


Ken Warren
Jeff Kelly
Mike Noonan
Trevor Hanson
Tommy Alfano
Scott Baker
Kip Brown
Bryan Pyziak
John Walcker

Team Founded: 2020
Home Port: Auburn, WA
Driver: J. Michael Kelly
Driver Rookie Year: 2003
Boat Colors: White/Black/Orange
Builder: Ellstrom Racing
Hull Built: 2014
Engine: T-55/L-7 Turbine
2021 Boat Points: 5605
2021 Driver Points: 5605
2021 Driver Season Finish:1st
Team Victories: 2