Boat Drag Racing in West Kentucky This Fourth Weekend

Jul 1, 2014

Credit Wikimedia Commons

While NASCAR fans in the Commonwealth are still recovering from action at Kentucky Speedway this past weekend, drag boat racing enthusiasts are preparing for competition this Saturday and Sunday. 

Four different types of boats can compete in drag boat racing.   Kentucky Drag Boat Association President Roger Austin says thousands will be on hand this weekend to watch between 40 and 50 boats race at speeds exceeding 150 miles per hour.

"It will be wall to wall boats from 80-90 foot houseboats to 16 foot dinghies out there watching the boat races all up and down the side of a quarter mile," Austin said. 

According to Austin, the number one priority is that "everybody goes home safe."  He says there will be three safety boats along with three or four divers on the track at all times.  

"We've got three top notch safety boats and we have three and sometimes four divers on our track at all times,” Austin said. “We have to follow regulations from the insurance companies as to how far the people have to be back off the track to watch the water."

 Austin says safety is a top priority at Kentucky Lake.

"Generally any boat that crashes, we've never seen boats veer off the track,” Austin says. “I mean, if they crash, they're generally going so fast, they crash in a straight line right down the track.  Hopefully, we don't have any of those kind of events, something we definitely don't look forward to.  We've been racing down there for close to 40 years now, and we've never had a fatality at Kentucky Lake."