Thunder on Tholocco -- Speed boat racing hits Fort Rucker lake
Drag boat racers compete in the annual Thunder on Tholocco last year. Boats reach speeds in excess of 100 mph during the event. The fourth annual Thunder on Tholocco has been moved to April 25 at the West Beach. Gates open at 9 a.m. Cost to attend is $5 for advanced tickets now through Friday and $8 at the gate. Children 12 and under enter free of charge.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation staff have moved the fourth annual Thunder on Tholocco to April 25 at Lake Tholocco's West Beach where some drag boat racers reach speeds in excess of 100 mph.

Gates open at 9 a.m. and the races start at 11 a.m. for the sanctioned drag boat race, a Rucker Rocks Event for the post community.

Cost to attend is $8. Children 12 and under may attend free.

Racers compete in a double elimination race and are broken down into classes - River Racer, Unlimited, Pro Mod, Bass and Ski, 2.4 Pro and Pro Drag. Classes run in that order on race day.

A special event highlight is a trick water ski show performed at about 1 p.m. during race intermission.

The Wiregrass Performance Boaters Association and the American Outboard Federation teamed up with DFMWR staff to showcase this sport to the Fort Rucker community.

"The racers love the venue. They have stated that Lake Tholocco is one of their favorite bodies of water to race on," said John Clancy, Outdoor Recreation business manager. "We just want to let everyone know to come out and enjoy the races. With a 640-acre lake, there's plenty of room to race. Watching two boats drag race down Tholocco is just a sight to see. Racers will drag race down an 800-foot section of the lake."

A new aspect to Thunder on Tholocco is cardboard recycling bins to help DFMWR staff introduce going green practices into annual events.

"Thunder is going to be the first of our green events. The DFMWR Annual Events department is working to introduce green practices into the 2010 annual events schedule," said Emily Klein, special events coordinator. "This event will be the first where we will strive for zero cardboard waste. This isn't something the patron may even notice, but this is a big step for our food vendors and DFMWR staff. So be on the look-out for cardboard recycling bins."

Spectators are encouraged to bring lawn chairs to sit back and enjoy the races. Food and beverage vendors are available on site to offer options ranging from fried alligator and roasted corn to funnel cakes and more.

For safety precautions, no recreational usage of the lake is allowed on race day.

For more information about Thunder on Tholocco, call 255-1749 or visit <a href="http://www.ftruckermwr.com" target="_blank">www.ftruckermwr.com</a>. For more information on Lake Tholocco activities and services, call 255-4305.

Page last updated Thu April 22nd, 2010 at 11:55