Review of Video Rekindles David's Fight For Gold C
Appeal or not, David says refs missed call
Wednesday, July 17, 2013 11:00 AM
Whether or not the Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison race team can appeal the penalty Steve David was assessed during Sunday's APBA Gold Cup remains unclear. But what is now certain is that the team is not going down without a fight.
FILM AT 11: The Oh Boy! Oberto/Miss Madison team released video of the second turn incident at the Gold Cup in Detroit on Sunday. A still capture of the video (above) seems to support the team’s claim that driver Steve David (below) had at least the seven-boat length overlap needed to switch lanes. David was penalized one lap for encroachment on the Graham Trucking, taking him out of contention for his first Gold Cup title. (Photo courtesy Miss Madison Racing, above. Staff photo by David Campbell, below).
On Tuesday the team released a video shot from the roof of the pit tower in Detroit that seems to show what David had contended all along - that he had secured the required seven boat-lengths lead needed in order to switch lanes.
David was penalized one lap in the final heat when Jimmy Shane drove his Graham Trucking through the Oberto's skid fin roostertail. The incident essentially ended both drivers' chances at winning the Gold Cup.
David's contention then - and now - is that he had the seven boat-lengths (about one roostertail) needed to switch lanes once he passed the entry pin into the turn. As far as David is concerned, the video proves he had the distance.
"(The video) blatantly shows that I had 11 boat-lengths, let alone seven at the entry pin," David said Tuesday night by phone. "The photos show it, the video shows it."
The video released seems to back David's claim. As the Oh Boy! Oberto enters turn two, it appears to easily have the distance needed over the Graham Trucking - even by conservative standards - in order to switch lanes.
As the boats proceed through the turn, both the Graham Trucking and the Spirit of Qatar - the eventual winner - rapidly made up ground on the Oberto, resulting in the incident.
Whether or not Shane closed the gap in the turn is immaterial to David. He had the distance required when he entered the turn.
"I asked (Chief Referee Billy Noonan) about this exact scenario," David said. "I asked, 'If a boat has a seven-boat length lead or more coming into a turn, and the inside boat gains all of that back but an inch, may the boat that had the seven length lead at the entry, cross over within an inch of the inside boat.' The answer then was yes."
Rule 4, Section J, Subsection 8 of the 2013 H1 Unlimited rulebook states that "Should the passing or overtaking boat not have established the proper seven (7) boat interval before reaching the entrance buoy to a turn, an overlap shall not exist."
David interprets the rule meaning that once he established overlap, he was allowed to switch lanes at will, even if it meant driving into the buoy line.
"I thought about it (going to the buoy line) but it probably would have flipped Jimmy and Kip (Brown)," David said. "I decided that wasn't the best thing to do so I stayed where I was. Of course, that didn't turn out too well either."
Various media outlets are reporting that the Miss Madison team is appealing the call but the H1 rulebook states that such rulings are not subject to appeal.
H1 Unlimited owners made a change to the rulebook in the offseason eliminating all protests and appeals over "referees' decisions." Rule 4, Section P, Subsection 2 states "All decisions of the Referees shall be final regarding violations of starting, driving, and course rules. There shall be no appeals or protest from a decision based on the judgment of the Referees on violations of course rules."
It goes on to say, "Appeals shall be allowed only if a suspension is involved."
Regardless of what results from the possible appeal or video, David made it clear that he does not want to take anything away from Brown's historic victory.
"Kip Brown won and it's not his fault that this happened," David said. "I got a bad call, crap happens but Kip is our 2013 Gold Cup winner."