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GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell

Reviewed by:   Rusty Hurley
     
  GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car
 
 
 

Build it, and they will come. (Field of Dreams) If you collect vehicles capable of epic speed and your hunger runs beyond land based vehicles of the two or four wheel variety, the scope of your collection has been handcuffed. Until recently, precision models of airplanes, especially jets were limited to plastic, fiberglass, wood and rarely made in 1/24 or 1/18 size. Even more challenging were models of boats, seemingly limited to wooden sailboats or resin and plastic models often done better by RC oriented manufacturers. Personally, it is unimaginable to me that a piece like a Miss Budweiser regatta racer has never been done.

So if you own a company called Bad Ass Diecast (BAD) and a diehard fan of drag boat racing do you allow yourself to be limited like this? Or do you build that field of dreams? If you’re Stan Gill, the proprietor of BAD, you do and the result is a remarkable model like the Hot Licks TFH (Top Fuel Hydro) drag boat.

Top Fuel Hydro or TFH boat racing is a sport that takes a driver with the heart of a lion, an owner with the wallet of a tycoon and the engineering savvy of John Force. These are different than the power boats used for river regattas. TFH boats race across lakes and reservoirs from California to Florida from April to November. The boats set blistering speeds, topping 250 mph while throwing off tsunami sized rooster tails. And like Mario Andretti Sr. a few years ago at Indy, if the pilot gets the nose in the air just right, they can launch then tumble spectacularly into space and land in anywhere from one to a million pieces.

The Hot Licks boat (and another called the Berryman Bullet) are owned by Mr. Dennis “Hoot” Gibson. The Hot Licks boat is driven by John White. Dennis made the initial purchase of the Hot Licks boat in October, 2002 and since then it has raced competitively and successfully) in IHBA (International Hot Boat Association) sanctioned events.

BAD has certainly learned how to package models from their retail distributor GMP. The packaging has an outer box featuring art work of actual race photography. The model is protected by a Styrofoam coffin and comes with several accessories, including a display stand and an opening tool to gently pry open the magnetic parts. There are a total of four models in the series now with two more coming. If you buy all six, BAD will even throw in a free acrylic display case.

The model has all the traits you’d expect of a first class precision diecast. The contrasting black and yellow paint on the svelte hull of “Hot Licks” is striking – especially the flawless tampo graphics. The hull has several magnetic opening panels that pry off easily with the provided tool yet are nestled firmly in place. Other working elements include the twin props, the butterflies on the supercharger and an adjustable rudder angle.

There are parts of the model you’ll want to linger over on several occasions in order to appreciate all the eye candy. The opening cockpit with its nearly transparent hinging, functional metal steering mechanism and canopy support struts. The racing harness holds the driver in a Spartan seat and an oxygen bottle mounted between the driver’s legs. If the escape capsule is deployed, the bottle acts as a lifeline for the driver providing twenty minutes of oxygen.

If you thought the opening cockpit was special, go ahead and remove the capsule (note: do not attempt to remove by grasping the tie out on the roof – grasp the capsule on either side pull gently). With the capsule removed, the W drive is revealed. The best part of the model however, just might be the massive supercharged power plant featuring dual magnetos, authentic wiring and plumbing, soft drive belt and detailed engine block.

Overall you have to be impressed by this model, both by the dedication of BAD to give the hobbyist as many functional parts as possible and the craft of the production. With the escalating price of models, it’s rare these days to say you’ve got a bargain when the model retails for over $100 – but in this case you do. It looks very handsome displayed with modern drag racing cars or as part of a general racing display. Bottom line: this is the most unique diecast offering in years in terms of originality and the execution is at a level that would make several well established diecast manufacturers enviable. This model will stand out in your collection just as surely as Brooke Burke would stand out at your neighborhood pool. Highest recommendation.

(02/02/2007)
 
 
  GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell diecast car

 
 
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GMP | 1:18
GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell

GMP 1:18 2006 Top Fuel Hydro Drag Boat Owners Dennis 'Hoot' Gibson and Gordon 'Nitro' Braswell

 
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