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Bud Light Shoot Out practice set for Friday

By By Tony Krausz / assistant sports editor
April 22, 2004
Drag boat racers will be giving a preview of things to come over the weekend on Friday at the upper lake of Bonita Lakes.
Participants of the first Bonita Lake Bud Light Shoot Out will converge at the lake for a "test and tune day" on Friday with boats getting out on the water around 2 p.m.
The races will run on Saturday and Sunday at Bonita Lakes, with the gates opening to the public at 9 a.m. and the first race scheduled to begin at noon each day. The event will be the first of seven points races for the Outboard Drag Boat Association, the world's largest boat racing organization.
"A lot of times, the guys like to get to the racing site and get in their boats and play around," said Raymond Flint of Novus Glass, one of the sponsors for the drag boat race. "It also gives people a chance to come and see the boats in action and see what the races are like."
The Bud Light Shoot Out will have eight races over the two-day event, with four races running each day. The boats will race on a quarter-mile track.
The Pro Gas Class will be the first race held of the weekend at noon on Saturday. Super Stock and Pro Carb classes will be the second and third races held on the opening day.
The Unlimited Class, which is made up of boats that can use a configuration of engine and fuel type, will be the final race of Saturday's competition.
"The Unlimited is one of the fastest classes," Flint said. "They can run the quarter mile in nine seconds, and the boats go between 120 to 125 mile per hour and can get up to 140."
Sunday's races will begin with the Mod Production Class at noon, followed by the Lakeracer Class. Pro Fuel boats will run the third race, and the Sport Racer Class will conclude the weekend's racing.
The Bud Light Shoot Out is expected to draw around 75 racers, and admission to the races is $5 per person, with children under three admitted free. The proceeds of the race will benefit the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi.
"The spectators will be close to the action with the layout of the lake, and it should be a heck of a show," said Joel Payne of Mitchell Distributing, a distributor of Anheuser-Busch Beers and the main sponsor of the races. "It is a way to have and do something for a worthy cause."