PICTOU – A tradition at the heart of the Pictou Lobster Carnival is entering a renaissance, David MacCarthy says.
MacCarthy was among racers in the 2013 modified boat races associated with the carnival. The races are on the lobster boat racing circuit that includes races along the South Shore of Nova Scotia, and he’s among those competing in the next circuit races on Saturday.
“It’s very strong,” he said. “It’s coming back. South Shore racers are coming here, we’re getting asked by P.E.I. racers about coming here next year and they’re thinking of racing on the circuit twice in Pictou next year.”
Now 48, MacCarthy has been racing for 20 years. He generally races with Clint MacNeil, who will be in his Super 500 horsepower class this weekend.
“I didn’t do very well in my past races,” MacCarthy said. “I get too nervous. I hope that has passed this weekend.”
His craft is among two local ones racing this weekend.
Owen MacDonald has a craft called Not Wise, hinting at his advanced age for boat racing.
MacCarthy said he applauds MacDonald’s enthusiasm.
“A lot of fishermen on the South Shore in their late 60s were watching the races,” MacCarthy said. “Now they’re racing themselves.”
MacCarthy credits Clay Nickerson in the South Shore for leading the sport’s comeback.
“Clay brought it back,” he said. “They’ve built a racing web site and interest is growing.”
MacCarthy was eighth in the Super Stock 550 horsepower class on Aug. 4 during the Dustin Bruce Conrad Memorial Race in Shelburne, with the only Pictou County boat entered.
He was eighth out of nine boats in the category during the Race for a Cause on July 21 and sixth in the CH race on July 18.
MacCarthy was fifth among 10 entries in the Super 550 class during the lobster boat races in Pictou.
He’s currently tied for eighth place in the division point standings.
South Shore racers Hazard piloted by James Crowell, Yogi piloted by Tremaine Blinkhorn and Michael Ross and The Contender piloted by Bruce Newell were the top three finishers in Pictou in the Super 550.
A-Salt Weapon, Viper and Dodge It were the top three in the Stock 400 category.
Hazard won the 550 free-for-all and A-Salt Weapon won the 400 free-for-all.
Among outboards, the top three in the 20 to 40 horsepower class were Over Drive, Blule Bayou and No Redemption. Mayfly, Bad News Bear and Flying Canadian were the top three finishers in the 20 horsepower class.
Two more races are scheduled at locations to be announced on Sept. 2 and 14.
The Nova Scotia Boat Racers Association governs racing for outboard and modified racing boats.