April 23, 2013 | 01:27 PMKip Trumpulis has been instrumental in bringing the Badger State Outboard Association's power boat races to Pell Lake. He has been the face of the association at board meetings, asking for permission to hold the event year after year since 2009.
In an email Sunday, Trumpulis answered questions about what to expect this year with the Memorial Day races, why they wanted an extra day and perhaps the biggest question — will the weeds stop the event?
Regional News: Why have the races over Memorial Day weekend this year?
Kip Trumpulis: Memorial Day weekend is the customary usher of the summer season.
After a long, cold winter, nothing says summer better than a good time with family and friends down by a lake watching stock outboard boat racing.
RN: You had asked to have three days of races, but the board allowed two. How do you feel about the board's decision?
KT: For our season opening Memorial Day regatta, we typically race Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The board reviewed the (village's) resources and determined that a three-day race stretched those resources too thinly. We see the board's point, totally understand that this was a difficult decision, and we support that decision entirely. We are really pleased to be able to open our season with a two-dayer at Pell Lake.
RN: What is the likelihood of weed overgrowth in Pell Lake postponing or even stopping this year's races?
KT: Pretty doubtful. We seem to be back to our normal spring weather and thaw. It's still cold enough and weed growth shouldn't even start until June. With our recent rainfall, even the lake is back up to normal height.
RN: Any significant changes to this year's races? Wasn't the track shortened last year because of the weed problem?
KT: Hopefully, we'll be back to having a full-size race course like we did the first two years. This year, we are offering a driver's school for the public. This allows anybody who has an interest to come try it out. Everything's provided — boat, motor, helmet and gear and an actual boat race to participate in.
RN: How many people participated in last year's races?
KT: We had about 60 entries last year.
RN: Do you expect more racers this year? Why or why not?
KT: From early polling, we expect to have about 75 entries this year. Pell Lake is a great site to chase points in our national standings. We are expecting our usual trailers and races from Wisconsin and Illinois, but also some from as far as Indiana, Michigan and even Minnesota. It's going to be a great race.
RN: Why return to Pell Lake?
KT: The biggest reason is racers really love it here. The few business sponsors really know how to welcome our racers.
The local townspeople that come out and visit with the racers really give a lot of support, too. It seems from past reader comments (on the Regional News website) they really enjoy having such an even there.