Video: Arizona’s Demolition Boat Race

This was a story a year in the making. Nearly a year ago a friend who competes in demolition derbies called to tell me about this crazy race he drove in called a waterless boat race. Drivers drag fiberglass boats around a soapy asphalt track, trying to take out each other’s boats. The last driver to have a boat, or anything resembling a boat wins. After scolding him for not telling me about it before he did the race I made him promise that he’d give me enough warning before the next one so we could cover it. It sounded like an awesome video story that would be a blast to shoot.

He called a few weeks ago and said he was getting his car ready for a boat race in Lake Havasu. We decided to try and mount a couple of GoPro cameras to his car. He welded a few spots that I thought would give us some great angles. I was most excited about mounting one in the space where his headlight once was. I knew the odds were against the camera surviving but we thought it was worth taking the chance.

Lynn French and I went up to Lake Havasu with the plan to shoot the race from as many angles as possible. We covered the race with seven cameras- three on the car, one in the stands, one looking up a straight away, and one in each of our hands.

When I saw the car go through the first boat I instantly thought the front mounted camera was destroyed. After the race I was surprised when I saw the little red blinking light on the cameras indicating that it was still recording. It survived.

This was easily the most fun I have had at a shoot in a long time. I hope you have as much fun watching it as we did putting it together.

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