All things
power boat racing...

2000 HS Inductees

Ed KarelsenKarelsen has built perhaps the finest hydros in the U.S. since the 1950s. His Stock, Mod, PRO, Inboard, Unlimited and OPC boats won world championship titles as well as 26 competition and straightaway records. One holds the record for the fastest Outboard-powered hydro in the history of the sport, with runs of over 170 MPH and an average of over 168 mph. One of his Inboard 6 Litre boats won the national title four out of five years. The 1968 Bardahl revolutionized Unlimiteds, winning national titles in 1967-68. In 1988 the Miller American wore the first pair of Karelsen Shoes that helped Chip Hanauer set a record and win another Gold Cup. Ed Karelsen epitomizes the spirit of APBA racing. He is never too busy to help someone, usually with simple down-home imagination that borders on genius. He has served on many committees, and championed the use of safety cells. There is little that Ed Karelsen has not done in his nearly 50 years in the sport.
Willard S. Wilson, Jr.Wilson of Hockessin, DE, started racing in the Inboard category in 1962 and has continuously raced his Lil’ Lectron hydros for many years as an owner and driver. Willard has served APBA as Inboard Commissioner, and Technical Committee Chairperson for 145ci hydro, 2.5 Litre Stock and 2.5 Modified Hydro classes. As an owner/driver in the highly competitive Stock 145ci Hydro class, Willard started setting records and winning championships in 1969.  Between 1969 and 2000, he set at least nine World Records (mostly in competition) and won an unprecedented nine National Championships.  Willard was inducted into the APBA Hall of Champions in 1984. His Lil’ Lectrons raised the 5 mile competition record to 90.639 mph in 1999.  A major reason for Willard’s success is the fact that he designs and builds his own propellers and racing engines.