On June 8 & 9 2002, fans will be treated to the spectacular sight of powerboats racing down the River Thames as the largest offshore powerboat fleet in the world do battle
On June 8 & 9 2002, fans will be treated to the spectacular sight of powerboats racing down the River Thames as the largest offshore powerboat fleet in the world, the Honda Formula 4-Stroke (HFFS) series, battles out rounds three and four of its fiercely competitive 2002 championship in a weekend of races through the heart of the capital.
The excitement begins on Saturday 8 June, when the phenomenal thirty-strong race fleet of Honda Formula 4-Stroke powerboats will parade down the Thames from Putney to Tower Bridge past the familiar landmarks of Battersea Power Station, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, the Tate Modern and HMS Belfast.
At Tower Bridge the fleet will split into its two classes: the record-breaking twenty-strong flotilla of 130hp (50mph) powerboats and the new, more powerful 10-strong class of 225hp (70mph) powerboats, recently launched at the London International Boat Show. The first race will begin as the awesome 225hp fleet roars beneath Tower Bridge. Shortly afterwards the 130hp powerboats will follow their lead. Both classes will race over the forty-mile stretch to the Thames Estuary.
On Sunday 9 June, after an overnight stop at St. Katharine’s Dock, the two race fleets will contend round four of their championships in a sprint race from the Greenwich Meridian to the Thames Estuary.
“These races will be absolutely unmissable,” commented Steve Curtis, three-times World Class 1 Powerboat Champion and HFFS Series Organiser. “Over the three years that the 130hp championship has been in existence it has firmly established itself as one of the most competitive race series in motor sport today. Its one design format: identical boats, identical Honda 130hp engines and a no-modifications ruling means that the racing is fiercely contended and very exciting to watch.”
“The 225s are based on the same format but with a sleeker design and more powerful Honda engines. This level of racing combined with the stunning historical beauty of the Thames will make the London Grand Prix one of the most memorable powerboat events of all time.”
“Honda is really proud of its pivotal role in the revitalisation of powerboating,” said Martin Sanders, General Manager Power Equipment, Honda (UK). “The unprecedented success of the Honda Formula 4-Stroke fleets combined with the reinstatement of classic powerboat races such as the Cowes-Torquay-Cowes at the Honda Cowes Classic and now the London Grand Prix prove just how strong Honda’s commitment to the marine industry really is.”
The Honda Formula 4-Stroke 2002 championship will be screened on Channel 4 on Saturday mornings later this year.