Be afraid: Bohinc sounds confident

Two powerboating legends were on Lake Como over the weekend testing the boat which one of them hopes will win the Round Britain Powerboat Race, and which the other intends to beat in the same race!

Hannes Bohinc and Fabio Buzzi were putting the final touches to Hannes’ boat, called Wettpunkt.com, before it is boxed-up and sent to Portsmouth for the race start on 21 June.

The Isotta Fraschini-powered boat was designed and built by Fabio, who is also competing in the Round Britain Powerboat Race.

Because of the age of Fabio’s chosen boat, which he has recently restored, the two will race in separate classes, but both stand a strong chance of taking overall victory.

Fabio won the epic race the last time it was held, in 1984.

And after five hours on the water, Hannes uttered the words every other competitor in the race does not want to hear: Wettpunkt.com is in good shape.

“We tried a number of set-ups and were happy with the handling and the speeds we were able to generate,” said the man who has already won the Harmsworth Trophy and Venice-to-Monte Carlo twice.

“We have a fantastic package, the boat is one of Fabio’s finest ever creations and the Isotta Fraschini engines have proven reliability and performance.

“In a race of eight days’ duration, the most important factor will be just to finish each day in one piece, ready to go again the following day.”

Despite his own ambitions in the race, Fabio was generous: “The boat ran well and should be a strong contender.

“This event has all the hallmarks of a classic endurance adventure and is not bogged-down by politics or unrealistic measures of power output.

“It will be a true test of man-and-machine against the elements and Hannes is clearly up for the challenge.”

Wettpunkt.com will be piloted by throttleman and owner Hannes Bohinc, driver and fellow Austrian Max Holzfeind, and highly experienced English navigator Ed Williams-Hawkes.