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Jay Gignac and K&N’s Hydroplane Racing Team Gi Wizz Racing Ready to Race

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Using the principle of ground force hydroplanes in effect fly over water.
Using the principle of ground force hydroplanes in effect fly over water.
The first time we contacted Jay Gignac at home in Greenfield, New Hampshire to see if he was interested in doing a story about hydroplane racing he said, "Absolutely! As soon as all the snow goes away, 33 inches fell between Friday and Saturday and more is coming." Although he was a good sport, it was regrettably bad timing on our part. Living in southern California we're not tuned in with the need to dig your home out from snow.
After a long a snowy winter Jay Gignac and his Gi Wizz Hydroplane Racing Team is ready to hit the water.
After a long a snowy winter Jay Gignac and his Gi Wizz Hydroplane Racing Team is ready to hit the water.


The snow is long gone now and this time around Gignac began the conversation with, "Welcome to the team of K&N Inboard Hydroplane competition and Gi Wizz Racing." Gignac is the driver of the GNH-55 which competes within the Grand National Hydro class of hydroplane racing. Gignac is also the owner of the Gi Wizz Racing Team, which is a member of the American Power Boat Association (APBA). The APBA is the US National Authority for the UIM (Union Internationale Motonautique), which is the international governing body of power boating.

"Gi Wizz Racing started back in the 60's as the G Team, an outboard hydroplane team that over the last 53 years has evolved into a prestigious Grand National Inboard Hydroplane Team," Gignac continued. "A Grand National Hydroplane, aka GNH or 7 Liter, is the largest non-supercharged inboard hydroplane class. They are usually powered by big block Chevrolet based engines (up to 511 cubic inches) with a hot rod racing engine that produces over 750 horsepower. The highly competitive GNH's are capable of reaching speeds in excess of 150 mph, and they throw 70-foot rooster-tails, thrilling drivers and fans alike. Our team is made up of many talented and win driven individuals and we are ready to go racing."
Using the principle of ground force hydroplanes in effect fly over water.
Using the principle of ground force hydroplanes in effect fly over water.


If you are a motorsport fan and you've never been to a hydroplane race, you owe yourself the experience. A hydroplane, aptly nicknamed thunderboat, is actually more plane than boat. By definition a hydroplane has two or more planning surfaces, so that at speed, the weight of the hull is supported by the planning forces. A key aspect of hydroplanes is that they use the water they are on for lift, rather than buoyancy, as well as for propulsion and steering. Hydroplanes use the principle of "ground force," so when travelling at high speed, water is forced downwards by the bottom of the boat's hull. The water therefore exerts an equal and opposite force upwards, lifting the vast majority of the hull out of the water during racing. Some hydroplanes even have the center section designed like an aircraft wing to help them glide through the air and only barely in touch with the water during a race. It's an incredibly visceral experience because you don't only see and hear the race, but you feel the thundering power in your gut as they wreck havoc with the laws of physics.

"Along with our Crew Chief/Engine Builder, Leo Croisetier of R&L Engines, boat builder Bruce Mason, who keeps our big girl afloat, and the entire crew, we are looking forward to a very competitive season," Gignac said. "2013 will bring on a newly rebuilt big block power plant too, that we've named 'The Beast!' Leo assures us that she will be extremely reliable and with plenty of horsepower. We can't wait to get her fired up!"

Related K&N News Articles about Hydroplane Racing: K&N Sponsored UL-11 Hydroplane - Miss Executif Racing Wins Polson Regatta; Hydroplane UL-11 Power Punch Race Team/94Five ROXY/K&N Wins at Firebird; Unlimited Light Hydroplane Racing Association Racing Team Defies Odds PRODUCT SEARCH
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