Monday, May 22, 2006

Unlimited Power - Unlimited Noise

When you're young you're impressed by power, speed, and LOUD. Miami built the Marine Stadium on the Rickenbacker Causeway near the Seaquarium just for power boat racing, but it was soon used for rock concerts also. The band would set up with their sound system on a barge anchoredin front of the grandstand, there was plenty of parking, and only Flipper might be annoyed by the pulsating music blasting into the night.

Miami was on the circuit for unlimited hydroplane racing, and these monstrous boats would pack the stands with people as they roared around the oval track. They were equipped with Rolls Royce airplane engines designed before the days of jets, giant V12 engines cranking out the horsepower through the craft's propeller and the noise through 12 straight exhaust stacks.

I had a press card issued by the Dade County Police Department, and in most cases that got me wherever I wanted to go, whether or not I really had an asignment. These shots were taken the day before a major race on the circuit. The boats were trucked city to city and spent a few days being tuned up and making practice laps. Miss Budweiser hadn't made it to the water yet when I shot these phographs of the engine and the mechanics working on it. I was shooting with a Leica M4, 50mm Summicron, on Kodachrome II.


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