Maine Lobster Boat Racing Arrives

By Michael Crowley.

Boothbay Harbor on Saturday and Rockland Harbor on Sunday hoisted the season’s first two races.

Forty-four boats showed up at Boothbay, six more than last year. Most of the boats had tied up by Friday afternoon, their crews ready to meet up and have a good time. “At Boothbay, they love to get together,” said Jon Johansen, President of Maine Lobster Boat Racing. “The parties run till three in the morning.”

Then it’s time to get things together since sign-ups generally run between 8 and 9 a.m. and racing starts at 10. Forty-four boats signed up for Boothbay’s 31 races. That’s six more boats than last year, but still lower than the 52 boats racing between 2010 and 2012.

 The first three races were for work boats under 24 feet. The fastest boat came out of Class C (Inboards, outboards or outdrive 91 hp and up). That was David Noyes’ Zippah (Carson 17, 150-hp Evinrude) that hit 49.7 mph, beating four other boats. For the fourth race only two boats showed up for the Fastest Working Lobster Boat in Boothbay, Andrew Hallinan’s Shoals Run (Wayne Beal 32, 450-hp Cummins) and Andrew Taylor’s Blue Eyed Girl (Morgan Bay 38, 900-hp Scania). It was an easy win for Blue Eyed Girl, crossing the line at 43.1 mph.

There were five races for lobster boats in the Gas Powered Work Boats 24 Feet and Up bracket, but only three lobster boats showed up. Thus all three were sent down the course at the same time. The winner of Gasoline Class C (V8, 376 to 525 cid, 28 feet and over) was Jim Koehling’s Brown Eyed Girl (Duffy36, 454-hp Chevy) at 36 mph. The sole entry and thus the winner of Gasoline Class E (V8, Over 525 cid, 28 feet and over, superchargers/turbos) and the race’s overall winner was Steve Johnson’s Lynn Marie (Sisu 26, 632 Chevy) at 50 mph.