Powerboat racing at the highest level is set to fly at Lake Mulwala Yarrawonga three hours north of Melbourne April 29-30th & 1st May, when the “Kiwi Annihilator Racing team“ takes on the Aussies in the 103rd running of the “EC Griffith Cup” the world’s second oldest motorsport trophy still being contested.
Waverley based family team Warwick Lupton (Annihilator Race Boats) sons Ken Lupton ( Lucas Oils), Jack Lupton (Rural Fuels GP57) and Warwick’s cousin David Alexander (The Steeler 777) have packed up their boats and shipped them to Australian waters to do their best to win the EC Griffith’s Cup and bring it back to New Zealand.
In its long history only three kiwis have been victorious in winning the cup in Australia, 1949 Sir Len Southward won the cup and kept it in New Zealand until 1963, it was to be another twenty six years 1989 before kiwi driver Peter Knight Jnr “CRC Latimer Lodge” won the cup bringing it back to New Zealand where it stayed until 1994. Several Kiwi challenges over the next seven years were unsuccessful until “Warwick Lupton” won the cup in Paynesville in 2001, keeping it on kiwi waters for only one season .”Lupton Snr” the only New Zealander to win the Cup twice in Australia was to win again seven years later in “2008”. Australian driver Grant Harrison “GP1” up lifted the trophy in 2012 and today remains the current holder.
The Lupton family also well known for a different kind of horse power, Warwick’s late father “Snow Lupton “ with his Waverley trained race horse “Kiwi “won the Melbourne Cup in 1983. The EC Griffith’s Cup is the pinnacle in powerboat racing as is the Melbourne Cup in horse racing.
The determination and skill of this kiwi team is second to none, there approach is with enormous commitment and ferocity“failure is not an option “you will hear them say. The four boat team with a crew of thirty, will not be alone in their challenge hundreds of kiwi supporters are also heading to Yarrawonga to witness this epic challenge in the Cup’s long history.
Who will win? It’s hard to predict young Jack Lupton “Rural Fuels GP57” fresh out of a winning season in New Zealand would have to be the hot favourite, the affable David Alexander “The Steeler 777”, a hard charging and honest driver has the horsepower and courage to be at the front of the field, not to be ruled out and probably the dark horse in the field Ken Lupton “Lucas Oils” has had a few minor handling problems since they put a new cell in the boat a couple of seasons ago, now sorted Ken is quietly confident . The leader of the pack Warwick Lupton “Annihilator Race Boats” says preparation is everything and this mission is not impossible don’t rule me out I can still foot it with these young guys.
It is with high hopes and pride we wish the Kiwi teams well in their quest to up lift this prestigious trophy from the Aussies follow their progress on www.facebook.com\www.annihilator.co.nz and www.facebook.com\accelerationonwater .
Media Release: Denise Preece.