Spills, thrills entertain crowd

FROM her perch atop her Alastair Casey’s shoulders, Chani Tweedale reckons she had the best view of the beach at Bundy Thunder.

After driving down from Gladstone especially for the event, she did not want to miss a minute of the massive event that saw a record entry list this year with more than 80 boats — and some drivers — hitting the water.

“It’s great, I love anything fast and loud,” Ms Tweedale said.

And she certainly was not disappointed with the roar of engines, which ranged from a high-pitched waspish whine to a bass rumble, deafening the thrilled audience.

First-timers Matt and Rebecca Darnell travelled from Maryborough, with their daughters Angel and Taiyah.

“We won tickets through a radio station, but I’d wanted to come for a while so we probably would have come anyway,” Mr Darnell said.

“One of the boats flipped before, it was pretty spectacular.”

New South Wales F1 boat driver Craig Bailey was taken to Bundaberg Hospital for observation after his boat rolled in a race.

Bundy Thunder co-ordinator Sue-Ellen Pitt said Mr Bailey was having X-rays taken yesterday afternoon as a precautionary measure.

In another crash in the heat of the race, a boat was completely destroyed when it was rear-ended by another competitor.

“One of the boats had mechanical problems so it stopped, and another boat collided with him from behind,” she said.

“Both the drivers are fine, but the boat was irreparable.”

The thrills and spills of the weekend were witnessed by an estimated 6000 visitors — up on last year’s number, according to Ms Pitt.

“The crowds have definitely been bigger than last year but we are still waiting on final gate numbers,” she said.

“I’ve had people from Victoria coming up to me and saying that the event is phenomenal — they loved everything from the racing to the event organisation and even the toilets.”

She said the crowd had been well-behaved, with hundreds of families travelling from all over Queensland and interstate to attend.

“There’s something about the thrill of it that keeps people coming back every year,” Ms Pitt said.

Did you head to Bundy Thunder over the weekend? Tell us below what you thought of the event.

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