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July 19-21, 2013 - Quake On The Lake

This year was the 14th Annual Quake on the Lake at Pontiac Lake in Oakland County. The Quake consists of three days of  boat racing, with rip-roaring high speed hydroplanes highlighting the event and various other entertainments such as music, exhibits, shows, play areas, and food. New to the Quake this year was the Malibu Rider contest that included Quake on the Lake in a four-stop national tour that includes Orlando, Texas, California, and now Michigan. Another new event this year was the stock outboard races. The Quake is for competitors of almost all ages, with junior stock hydros (J-stock) having some drivers as young as nine years old competing for prestige and prizes!

Competing for world record speeds is a tradition at the Quake on the Lake and this year was no different. The course on Pontiac Lake is known as America’s fastest one-mile course and 17 world records have been set here in five different racing classes during the preceding 13 years. This year Bert Henderson bested the world record in his class by over four mph. The last record was 108.5 mph and Bert beat that with 112.768 mph, so congratulations Bert! GP-777 came within 3/100’s of a second for the record and GP-93 was 2nd followed by Happy Go Lucky and Baby Doll.

Vintage hydroplane races are becoming fewer and farther between, but this year the classic vintage boats were at the Quake. Detroit Metro Mashup photographers had the pleasure of meeting Hal and Helena LeDuc, owners of the vintage 1968 hydroplane “Opechee,” a beautiful wood-grained craft of Hallett/Kaufman design. Opechee is the name of a lake in New Hampshire and the word also occurs in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “Song of Hiawatha,” in which Opechee is the Native American name for robin. 

Other attractions at Quake on the Lake included musical entertainment. We got to see Shotgun Willie and the Howling Diablos (with our friend Erik Gustafson howling on the guitar) on Saturday evening. Also on exhibit were both new cars (Fords, Chevys, Toyotas, Buicks, etc.) and antique cars (The Flaming Piston’s Car Club of Michigan). There was a family fun zone where the kids could play and bounce on inflatables then go to the pet adoption area from Oakland County Animal Control. In keeping with the cool animals theme, Pet Supplies Plus sponsored the Rock-N-Roll K-9s Performance Team that had a full racing, hurdling, and obstacle course for an awesomely trained group of really cute canines. We’ve got some great pictures of airborne pooches in the photo stack above.

Proceeds from the $10 per adult, $5 per child, Quake on the Lake gate fees benefit the Rainbow Connection. The Rainbow Connection is a nonprofit organization founded by Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson that grants wishes to children with life-threatening or terminal illnesses. A great cause being supported by a great event in the Metro area.

Detroit Metro Mashup had a great time at Quake on the Lake, as evidenced by the fact we went both Saturday and Sunday. It is something completely different from most Detroit Metro area events and happens on a large inland lake; a great excuse for getting out into the sunshine. We took a lot of photos that you can find in the photo stack above this written coverage. Just click on the stack and enjoy.

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