Sunday, September 24, 2023

Local Powerboat Racer Recognized for Lifelong Achievements

John Fitzgerald

John Fitzgerald, of Rio Grande, races in a vintage 280-cubic-inch hydroclass powerboat.

By Herald Staff

RIO GRANDE – John Fitzgerald, of Rio Grande, was nationally recognized in early February for his contribution to the sport of powerboat racing.
Powerboat racing is a big deal in seaside communities like Cape May County. The sport has an official worldwide governing body, and here in the U.S., races are officially run and sanctioned by the American Power Boat Association (APBA).
Fitzgerald was inducted into the APBA’s “Honor Squadron” for many years of service and contributions to the sport. Only those at the forefront of the sport are given the honor of joining the “Honor Squadron.”
Fitzgerald flew to Seattle to receive the award. His wife, Ann, is also a member of the “Honor Squadron.” She was inducted in 1994.
The ‘power’ couple have been involved in hydroplane powerboat racing since 1970. Both have accomplished many championships in their racing careers.
The couple managed the ‘Wildwoods Hydrofest,’ which was once held annually in Wildwood Crest, from 2001 to 2014. Even 50 years after their first races, they are both still active in hydroplane racing and travel the racing circuit, from Canada to Florida.

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