Welcome to the Seventh Annual Steamboat Race
Every year we have an online steamboat race - it has been a tradition since 2001. This year we held the race, despite being in the middle of the crisis over our Queen, the eminent Steamboat Delta Queen herself. You will be reminded of this situation again by our sponsors this year, the online steamboat community and the Save the Delta Queen Task Force.
This year Jerry Canavit will race the Delta Queen against the Delta King, piloted by Franz, Carmen, and Leonie of Steamboats.org. The Delta Queen and Delta King are twin ships, built together in Scotland in 1926, and they ran the Sacramento to San Francisco route together until World War II. You can see the Delta Queen at the top of this page and the Delta King above. Both photographs are from 2007.
For lack of a real river venue, the race will take place at the pond in my front yard, here in Arizona, known as The Lakes of Tempe, for the second year in a row. I will be your moderator. Click the link at the bottom of each page to continue.
- Nori, webmaster of Steamboats.com and official steamboat race photographer
The Steamboats.org crowd - Franz, Carmen, and Leonie are off to a fast start, cruising at a top speed of ten miles per hour.
Jerry Canavit, the foremost steamboat historian in Texas - and possibly the world - is apparently having trouble getting his boat to move at all and falls behind at three miles per hour.
The folks from Germany continue at a quick pace of seven miles per hour, or 11.2654408 kilometers, as they would call it over there. Or, you could say they are traveling at 6.0828374 knots per hour.
A point of order, steamboats do not count distance in knots, so we will call the remainder of this race in miles per hour.
The other contestant, Jerry Canavit, has picked up speed and is now traveling at a breathtaking eight miles per hour. What a pick-up. This race has not been decided.
Steamboats.org, still out ahead, returns to a top speed of ten miles per hour. Canavit powers down to five miles per hour. What has happened - maybe the boat is in distress?
Let's pause for a word from our sponsors:
It is time again to save the Delta Queen Steamboat, whose right to travel at night may be revoked. She is eight-one years old and "sees" the river perfectly well with the help of her radar. The 1966 Safety at Sea Law was meant for ocean going vessels anyway, not little old Mark Twain riverboats. Send your U.S. Congressman and two U.S. Senators a holiday card today and tell them how you feel about the Delta Queen. Say it with Hallmark!
Jerry Canavit has called in from the Delta Queen to add his thoughts about the situation: "Steam is up and the anvil is hanging on the safety valve." Thank you for that positive thought, Jerry. Please drive safely. Keep an eye on that anvil, will you?
Photo by Nori, the Delta Queen paddlewheel in the early morning fog, Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, October 2007.
Now, back to the race.
During our commercial break there was a turn-around, with the boats now neck and neck.
Here is a recap: Steamboats.org was traveling at three mph when Canavit surged ahead to eleven mph, the top speed of this race so far! Steamboats.org was holding steady at four mph. Canavit coasted in toward the finish line, but then slowed down as Steamboats.org picked up speed.
The two boats crossed the finish line simultaneously, both traveling at four miles per hour. It looks like a tie.
The judges have confirmed that the race has resulted in a tie. Both of the captains will win the antler award! This is a classic win-win deal!
Please join us for a champagne celebration at the clubhouse.
Luckily we have two awesome and scary antler trophies. Let's hear from the captains!
Steamboats.org webmaster Franz Neumeier:
"No wonder there are two winners in the race of the two Million-Dollar-Boats, Delta Queen and Delta King. What surprises me though is that the good old Delta King still is in the shape to keep up with the Delta Queen which was in training for so many years while the Delta King didn't have the chance to ply the rivers for decades."
This year's judge: Paul Motter, head of CruiseMates.com.
Convert your miles to kilometers and knots http://www.plasma.com/classroom/converterspeed.htm
Find out the latest news on Saving the Delta Queen: steamboats.com * steamboats.org * save-the-delta-queen.org * savethedeltaqueen.com