Jimmy Shane, driver of the U-1 Miss HomeStreet/Miss Madison, reacts while standing on his boat after returning to the pits following the running of the re-start of the H1 Unlimited Albert Lee Appliance Cup final on Sunday in Seattle. Shane crossed the finish line first, but was penalized for failing to maintain speed during the pre-race, so the victory went to Andrew Tate, driver of the U-9 Les Schwab Tires boat. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Jimmy Shane, driver of the U-1 Miss HomeStreet/Miss Madison, reacts while standing on his boat after returning to the pits following the running of the re-start of the H1 Unlimited Albert Lee Appliance Cup final on Sunday in Seattle. Shane crossed the finish line first, but was penalized for failing to maintain speed during the pre-race, so the victory went to Andrew Tate, driver of the U-9 Les Schwab Tires boat. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
By DAVID CAMPBELL

Special to the Courier

sports@madisoncourier.com

Jimmy Shane’s new U-1 Miss HomeStreet/Miss Madison was super fast all weekend. But it was going too slow that cost him a win.

Shane was assessed a one-minute penalty for an infraction before the start of the final heat and settled for fifth place in the Albert Lee Appliance Cup final heat on Lake Washington in Seattle on Sunday.

Andrew Tate took full advantage of Shane’s penalty by pulling away for the easy win, his third in four races this season.

“That was a goofy last heat there,” said Tate, who picked up his sixth career win. “I couldn’t be happier for the Les Schwab guys. They worked their butts off. We’ve got a great sponsor and a great boat.”

The newest boat to wear the seal of the City of Madison saw its first action in testing on the Columbia River at the Tri-Cities, Washington, two weeks ago, but with the National High Points race all but over, the team decided to give the new boat all of the attention this past weekend.

The move paid off for the most part. HomeStreet “White,” as the team as dubbed the boat, was the fastest qualifier on Friday and posted a near-record Andspeed in testing Saturday morning. Shane then went out and easily won all three of his preliminary heats.

Shane was in a perfect position to finish off the weekend sweep in the final heat. By staying inside of Tate and on his hip throughout the milling period, Shane was assured that he wouldn’t have to take on Tate from the outside. The maneuver worked and Shane was rewarded with lane one.

But Shane was also warned for dropping below the series’ 80 mph minimum speed early in the milling period and he was then forced to slow down closer to the start to avoid crossed the line early and jumping the gun. The latter hiccup resulted in a second 80 mph violation and a subsequent one-minute penalty in the final.

On the course, Shane took control of the race at the start. He beat Tate through turn one and was pulling away when the penalty was announced on lap three. Shane never truly backed off and physically finished first in what proved to be a moot point.

“I don’t’ understand how two boats can have the exact time marks all the way around the course, and they call one boat and not the other,” said Shane told the Seattle Times, referring to the Les Schwab Tires. “We shadowed each other all the way around the course.”

“We were both cruising around 80 and I guess there was a call made there on the 1 for going under 80,” Tate said. “It’s unfortunate. You don’t want to win that way. (Shane) was in a great position. Unfortunately a call was made and we’ll take it any way we can get it.”

H1 Unlimited Chief Referee Doug Shelton said Shane had been given a warning on one lap, and he went under 80 mph again resulting in the penalty. Shelton said Tate only dropped below 80 mph once.

“I don’t feel like the true winner won Seafair this year, and we’ll come back stronger and faster next year,” said Shane.

The penalty was the sixth the normally clean Miss HomeStreet team has been flagged for in 17 heats of racing this season. The previous five all resulted in disqualifications.

With Shane now relegated to fifth, Tate had little trouble pulling away for the win. J. Michael Kelly finished second in the U-12 Graham Trucking with Brian Perkins placing third in the U-21 PayneWest Insurance. Rookie Aaron Salmon was fourth in the U-99.9 CARSTAR presents Miss Rock.

The first running of the final heat was stopped when Cal Phipps and the U-1918 Oberto/Beef Jerky crashed on a 360-degree blowover while entering turn two of the first lap. Tom Thompson appeared to cut off Phipps as the pair entered the turn leaving Phipps no where to go but up the roostertail of Thompson’s U-11 J&Ds.

The Oberto landed right-side up and Phipps quickly exited the craft uninjured.

“I got up there and there wasn’t a lane,” Phipps said. “There is supposed to be a seven-boat overlap and it didn’t look like seven boats to me.”

Phipps did get a preliminary heat win earlier in the day, the only driver besides Tate and Shane to pull off the feat.

“We’re trying to sell beef jerky and that’s a great way to get some attention and TV time,” Phipps joked about the flip. “I’m just glad the boat looks like it’s OK and we were able to get a win for a great sponsor.”

Both Phipps and Thompson were disqualified for the restart of the final — Phipps for causing the stoppage with his blowover and Thompson for lane encroachment on Phipps. Ironically, the fleet had made a perfect start on the first running of the final heat and Shane had led Tate and Thompson into turn two while Kelly and the Graham Trucking had elected to sit out the final rather than start in the trailer position. The restart allowed Kelly a spot on the front row and Shane’s penalty opened the door for him to finish second.

Tate’s lead in the National High Points standings has now ballooned to 1,998 points with just two races left in the season. With only 3,800 total points left to earn, Tate only has to average 801 points over the next two races to clinch his — and the Jones Racing Team’s — first national title.

“One day at a time,” Tate said. “Friday in Detroit is the next day. That’s what were focused on there.

“You can see anything can happen,” Tate said. “It takes one bad day like the HomeStreet team had in Tri-Cities, and you’re in a big hole.”

The H1 Unlimited fleet will now swing back east for the annual APBA Gold Cup in Detroit Aug. 24-26. The season will then wrap up Sept. 14-16 on Mission Bay in San Diego.

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H1 UNLIMITED HYDROPLANE SERIES

2018 ALBERT LEE CUP AT SEAFAIR

Lake Washington, Seattle, Washington

Length: 2.0 miles

RESULTS

Sunday, Aug. 5

FINAL HEAT

1. Andrew Tate, U-9 Les Schwab Tires, 136.073 mph; 2. J. Michael Kelly, U-12 Graham Trucking, 132.343; 3. Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 131.927; 4. Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 Miss Rock, 123.458; 5. Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet/Miss Madison, 111.362*.; Cal Phipps, U-1918 Oberto Beef Jerky, DSQ**; Tom Thompson, U-11 J&Ds, DSQ***.

Fast Lap: Shane, U-1, No. 1, 141.790.

*-penalized one lap for violating 80 mph rule.

**-disqualified for causing stoppage of heat

***-disqualified for lane encroachment, fined $500 and penalized 300 points

PRELIMINARY HEATS

Saturday, Aug. 4

HEAT 1A

1. Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 133.738 mph; 2. Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 Miss Rock, 128.585; 3. Cal Phipps, U-1918 Oberto Beef Jerky, 120.202; 4. Tom Thompson, U-11 J&Ds, 112.032.

Fast Lap: Shane, U-1, No. 1, 137.077.

HEAT 1B

1. Andrew Tate, U-9 Les Schwab Tires, 138.571; 2. Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 126.390; 3. Dustin Echols, U-440 Bucket List Racing, 112.213; J. Michael Kelly, U-12 Graham Trucking, DSQ.*

*-disqualified for flagrant N2 violation.

Fast Lap: Kelly, U-12, No. 2, 143.646.

Sunday, Aug. 5

HEAT 2A

1. Andrew Tate, U-9 Les Schwab Tires, 140.597; 2. J. Michael Kelly, U-12 Graham Trucking, 137.048; 3. Tom Thompson, U-11 J&Ds, 135.732; 4. Cal Phipps, U-1918 Oberto Beef Jerky, 129.729.

Fast Lap: Tate, U-9, No. 2, 143.959.

HEAT 2B

1. Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 137.089; 2. Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 135.891; 3. Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 Miss Rock, 129.487; 4. Dustin Echols, U-440 Bucket List Racing, 113.622.

Fast Lap: Shane, U-1, No, 2, 138.277.

HEAT 3A

(speeds not available)

1. Jimmy Shane, U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 140.583; 2. Tom Thompson, U-11 J&Ds, 138.502; 3. Andrew Tate, U-9 Les Schwab Tires, 138.156; 4. J. Michael Kelly, U-12 Graham Trucking, 127.625.

HEAT 3B

(speeds not available)

1. Cal Phipps, U-1918 Oberto Beef Jerky, 137.035; 2. Brian Perkins, U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 131.591; 3. Aaron Salmon, U-99.9 Miss Rock, 127.191; Dustin Echols, U-440 Bucket List Racing, DNS.

CURRENT POINTS STANDINGS

(After 4 of 6 races)

BOATS

1. U-9 Jones Racing, 6,785; 2. U-1 Miss HomeStreet, 4,787; 3. U-11 J&Ds, 4,271; 4. U-21 PayneWest Insurance, 3,388; 5. U-440 Bucket List Racing, 2,645; 6. U-1918 Oberto Beef Jerky, 2,344; 7. U-12 Graham Trucking, 1,724; 8. U-99.9 Miss Rock, 1,399; 9. U-27 Wiggins Racing, 625; 10. U-3 Grigg’s Ace Hardware, 146.

DRIVERS

Andrew Tate (U-9), 6,785; 2. Jimmy Shane (U-1), 4,787; 3. Tom Thompson (U-11), 4,271; 4. Brian Perkins (U-21), 3,388; 5. Cal Phipps (U-27/U-1918), 2,969; 6. Dustin Echols (U-440), 2,645; 7. J. Michael Kelly (U-12), 1,724; 8. Aaron Salmon (U-99.9), 1,399; 9. Jimmy King (U-3), 146.