Roger Preston cruises the Clutha River at Albert Town on
his way to winning the Central Rivers jet-boat race
yesterday. Photo by Mark Price.
Winton jet-boater Roger Preston held off the two
much-fancied high-speed gas turbine jet-boats in this year's
Central Rivers Jet Boat Race, which finished at Cromwell
Preston had a 7min lead going into the final leg, down the
Clutha River from the outlet of Lake Wanaka to Old Cromwell,
despite going ''overland'' a couple of times on gravel bars
in the Matukituki River earlier in the day. He finished 10min
ahead of Rob Pooley, of Nelson.
In third place, in one of the jet turbine boats was John
Derry, of Blenheim, who lost time on the Matukituki, when he
''parked up'' on gravel after a wrong turn.
The other jet turbine, driven by Regan Williamson, of
Queenstown, flipped on the Dart River, on Saturday, ending up
high and dry. He and co-driver Pete Reid were ''a bit sore''
but finished the event, well down the field.
Race controller Eddie McKenzie said the race was good
preparation for the world championships, in New Zealand in