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Pictured above: Gary Allen Sr. and Richard Kaer of Wrangell, AK running rapids up the Mighty Stikine River

A Little History and Meet the Board

The races have a long history in Wrangell.  From what we can gather, racing has been going on in Wrangell starting in the 1920's through the early 90's.  They were put on hold for several years, but fans never forgot.  In 2016, A group of race fans got together and formed a committee to bring back the races.  The committee worked in partnership with the Wrangell Chamber of Commerce, secured permits and insurance, and finally, in 2017, our beloved 4th of July races returned.  As times have changed, and we are more focused on safety, races have a different style; drag as opposed to circular for the faster boats, and an oval as opposed to circle for the 115HP and under boats, but they are still the highlight of the 4th of July, nonetheless.   Other major safety changes are the purchase of Racer Lifejackets, which have a hard inner shell, skid collar, and leg straps, minimum distances to viewing areas and structures, communication requirements, officials training, and boat gear requirements.  We have been running races every fourth since 2017, with the exception of the "year of the Covid", then in 2021  became our own non-profit as originally planned.  With all the above and increased insurance costs, now more than ever, Sponsorships are extremely important to making the races happen and grow.  As we look forward, we hope to build the Wrangell 4th of July Boat Races.

Overview of the Races

  • Races take place in a premier location in Southeast Alaska with ample viewing for fans during this half-day event held over the 4th of July at the popular location of Wrangell, AK City Dock

  • Boats compete close to viewing area (210 feet minimum)

  • Boat types include outboards and jet boats

  • Unlimited Boats race up to speeds of 99MPH, and Limited Boats race up to speeds of around 70MPH

  • Courses include straight drag for Unlimited and oval for Limited

  • Wrangell 4th of July and races attract many people from all over the United States

Our board

consists of 7 members who also serve as APBA officials and wear many hats:

Penny Allen, Chair, Secretary, Director, Scorer (APBA)

Marjy Wood, Vice Chair, Treasurer, Director, Risk Manager (APBA)

John Waddington, Trustee, Referee (APBA)

David Powell, Trustee, Inspector (APBA)

Donna Massin, Trustee, Asst Risk Manager (APBA)

Anna Allen, Director, Race Director (APBA)

Coby Holder, Trustee, Asst Referee (APBA)

We also have seemingly countless volunteers on race day who make up the safety crew, and a few others who have been so gracious with their time to help fundraise and organize.  Thank you volunteers!

Organizations and volunteers that make it all happen:

  • Wrangell 4th of July Boat Race Officials and Board

  • Stikine River Rats Racing Club Members

  • American Power Boat Association

  • Hawk Race Consultants LTD

  • Wrangell Chamber of Commerce

  • Wrangell Fire Department

  • Wrangell Police Department

  • Wrangell Port Authority

  • US Coast Guard

  • Racing Crews

  • Safety Crew

  • Volunteers

  • Sponsors

  • Fans

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