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Starting Racing

Want to get into junior racing and join the ranks of the Formula Future racers.

The Future of Power Boat racing, Is in our junior program. Junior races from the age of 8 years and older can participate in controlled conditions while learning the fundamentals of racing.

Formula Futures have 3 classes based on age:

J1 Class Is for the youngest of our racers. These racers may use an engine of up to 6hp manufacturers rating.

J2 Class is for racers aged 10 years & older. These racers may use an engine of up to 10hp manufacturers rating.

J3 Class Is for racers aged 12 years and older. These racers may use an engine of up to 15hp manufacturers rating.

A NSW Waterways Young Adult licence is compulsory for J3 competitors.

All junior engines are allowed only very minor modification from stock. The purpose of the program is to encourage and teach driver skills.

J1& J2 racing is conducted on a shorter course and J3 race on the full seniors course. All events are conducted on a handicap basis. With each racer doing timed laps of the course and their start time for the event being worked out from this.

Many of our top name drivers have come through our junior program, including Craig Bailey, Troy Marland, Michael Newton & Lyndsay McMillan, names well known to power boat racing followers.

Girls are also a part of Formula Future racing, its definitely not boys only.

Junior Events Are conducted at

Deepwater Motor Boat Club

Upper Hawkesbury Power Boat Club

Raymond Terrace Aquatic Club

Taree Aquatic Power Boat Club

Dargle Valley Boat Club

Formula Future events are conducted at most spectaculars and all Club Days at the clubs listed above. There is also a junior class in the Bridge to Bridge boat race, they leave from Wilberforce and race to Windsor bridge under the eye of an official boat who follows them up the course. First Formula Future boat gets to grab the coke bottle hanging from the Bridge.

What you need to do to get started.

Get to a few meetings at Upper Hawkesbury Power Boat Club, held each month except January, talk to the families and drivers, sit in a few boats, ask lots of questions. you might even be able to organise a drive in one of the boats to see if you like it, most families are happy to encourage new families into the sport.


• A photocopy of your NSW Maritime or other State Boating Authority Boat Licence and/or Boat Registration is not attached.

• Forms (Medical/Licence/Boat Owner) are NOT COMPLETE or NOT SIGNED by YOURSELF or YOUR CLUB – it is YOUR responsibility to prove you have current Club Membership – not ours!

• There is NO Payment attached.



 PO Box 443, CHESTER HILL NSW 2162  

There is an introductory license called a NOVICE LICENSE To encourage the entry of NEW drivers. This is available for a single meeting at the club level

Are valid for competition at individual events.

• Only two (2) NOVICE Licences can EVER be obtained.

• Not valid for any Championship, Major Day or Speed/Time Trials.

• Require the use of the Self-Assessing NOVICE MEDICAL Form.

• Are not to be issued to any driver that has previously held any type of APBA Competition Licence.

• Can be upgraded to FULL or ½ YEAR Licences

You may also obtain an APBA Formula Future competition license. With this you may compete at any event you are licensed for. With this license you can compete at club events at any affiliated club anywhere in Australia.

APBA competition license in NSW are divided into two sections, one for the boat owner and one for the driver. If you are driving a boat that is already covered by an APBA Boat Owner membership, you will only need to buy a drivers license. Other states may differ.

Naturally you will need to know the rules for the event you are entering, and as laid down in the APBA rule book. You will receive a copy of the rule book with your competition license. Novice Licenses do not receive a rule book. And you will be expected to make yourself aware of the course rules for the venue you attend.

2021 - 2022 Rule Book.pdf

Some Safety gear.

A helmet in adequate condition and either safety / international orange or bright yellow in colour. The colour of the helmet must contrast with the colour of the boat. The only writing on the helmet can be the competitors name with the lettering not exceeding 20mm x 100mm. Once only on the helmet preferably at the base of the helmet.

A life jacket suited for racing use. This must have leg straps.

Full coverage driving suit. As a minimum overalls are acceptable.

Full coverage footwear.

Helmet restraints

Ballistic pants

How are license costs determined.
Your license fee is mostly used to pay for the insurance that protects us all. Only a very small pert of the license costs will be used for administration. The APBA is a non profit body, and we exist for no other reason to foster power boat racing events.

What next?
Get on the water and race!
Racing around the water on your own is one thing, doing the same thing with half a dozen other boats sometimes a few inches away from you is another. Especially in a corner.
As a new driver you will be given an outside starting position, or sometimes even behind the field. Watch the line drivers take throughout the course and learn from it. As a newbie don't try to get to involved until you are well aware of how you boat handles in race conditions. Drive wide on corners for your first few events, as your skill improves so will your confidence, and after a while you will think nothing of going gunwale to gunwale with other drivers.
Get as many races as you can. Handicap races are the go for new drivers. In these slower boats go earlier than faster boats and in theory everyone should finish in a nice neat line, they don't though and this is where driver consistency and skill pays off. This same consistency and skill is the hallmark of a good driver in any area of the sport, from the smallest juniors to the biggest unlimited.

Arrive nice and early, and make yourself known to the officer of the day, or to the control tower who will advise you what to do next. And who to see to have your boat inspected by the club boat inspectors. Talk to the other families we are a friendly bunch.

Formula Future races are handicap events.
Speedboat handicaps are based on time.

You will first do some laps where you will be timed. It is important to remember that these laps will be under different conditions than an actual race. The water will not have other boats wash all around the course, and in the corners you will not be negotiating your way with several other boats. Maintain a speed that you think you can duplicate under race conditions.

You will be given a time to start, which will be by a clock on the control tower. It is important that you start right on time. If you do your exact same time for the race but start 10 seconds late, its not going to do you much good, because if you come in with the rest of the field, you will have gone to fast (Breaking time) and will be disqualified. It is very important that you cross the start line on time, the only way to do this is practice.. Starting all over the place is not the way to become a winner.

Remember above all safety is the first thing to consider in any situation. If you feel it is becoming unsafe or your skills are not up to it, slow down, don't close your eyes and hope for the best.

Have fun and enjoy going racing with your family.

APBA Formula Future Photo Consent Form.pdf

Occasionally, at race meetings the Australian Power Boat Association (APBA) or APBA Affiliated Clubs may take photographs or video or web cam recordings of drivers in the Formula Future classes. The APBA or Club may use these images in printed publications, as well as on APBA or Club websites or on project display boards.

From time to time, media may visit race meeting and may take photographs or film footage of a high profile event. Formula Future Drivers could often appear in these images, which may appear in local or national newspapers, or on televised news programmes.

To comply with the Data Protection Act 1998, we need your permission before we can photograph or make any recordings of your child for promotional purposes.

However, you should be aware that this consent does not cover members of the public not associated with the Australian Power Boat Association or APBA Affiliated Clubs.

Please read and answer questions 1 to 4 below, then, if you agree, please sign and date the form where shown.

Return the completed form to with your Formula Future licence paperwork as soon as possible.

Conditions of use

1. This form is valid for five (5) years from the date you sign it. The consent will automatically expire after this time.

2. The APBA or Club will not use the personal details or full names (which means first name and surname) of any child or adult in a photographic image or in any of our other printed publications without good reason.

For example: The APBA or Club may include the full name of Formula Future driver has won an award or to publish results.

3. If the APBA or Club name a child in the text, we will not use a photograph of that child to accompany the article without good reason. (See point 3 above.)

4. The APBA or Club will not include personal information, such as e-mail or postal addresses, or telephone or fax numbers on video, on our website, or in other printed publications.

5. The APBA or Club may include pictures of Formula Future drivers that have written an article or made a quote that could be of great interest to other boating members.

6. The APBA or Club may use group photographs or footage with very general labels, such as race day at XYZ.

7. The APBA or Club will only use images of Formula Future drivers who are suitably dressed, to reduce the risk of such images being used inappropriately.

Please note: The press are exempt from the Data Protection Act and may want to include the names and personal details of children and adults in the media.

Ref: 14/005 9 February 2014

To: All NSW Clubs, Club Delegates and Co Delegates

All NSW Formula Future Owners and Drivers


Please be advised that from 1st March 2014 it is compulsory for all NSW Formula Future drivers complete an annual Formula Future Safety Orientation.

The reason this has been made compulsory in NSW is to give Formula Future drivers an insight as to what happens when an incident happens and to see if there safety equipment is up to standard.

The test will also give the Formula Future drivers the opportunity to have a Reinforced Cockpit test which may assist if they decide to race a boat with a Reinforced Cockpit fitted in the future.

Formula Future Safety Orientation

All NSW Formula Future Drivers must complete a Formula Future Driver Safety Orientation held in conjunction with a State Council approved Reinforced Cockpit Immersion test day or other State Council approved event. The Safety Orientation can be observed and approved by any NSW Council Executive Member or any NSW Club Executive member.

The Formula Future Driver Safety Orientation has been designed to acquaint the driver with a situation where they may be immersed in water, but in a controlled environment.

Orientations must be completed annually and must include the following:

 Drivers must free fall into the water in full race gear including race suit, shoes, life jacket, helmet and other apparel normally worn whilst racing

 Drivers must fall backwards into the water in full race gear as mentioned previously.

 Drivers must float in the water on their back for 60 seconds in full race gear.

 Drivers must while in the water attempt to dive to the under the water in full race gear

 Drivers must attempt to swim, paddle or float 25 metres in full race gear and exit the water.

The organisers and participants should feel that the orientation has been completed satisfactorily and that a feeling of confidence has been achieved, especially by the participants.

Formula Future drivers are also be encouraged to participate in a State council approved Reinforce Cockpit Immersion Orientation.

For further information, please contact NSW Vice President for Formula Futures.

Additional APBA Formula Future Rules


To: All Formula Future Owners and Drivers

All NSW Clubs

Date: Monday 30 May 2011

Subject: The use of non-standard throttle cams in Formula Future classes, motor modifications and fuel.

It has been bought to the NSW Councils’ attention that some engines are not using the standard production throttle cam as produced by manufacturers and sold with some brands of 6 hp, 9.9hp and 15 hp engines.

The throttle cam can be easily checked and any motor found using a non-standard throttle cam will not be permitted to race in any Championship event, unless the original throttle cam is reinstalled to the engine and rechecked.

I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone of following Specific Formula Future Rules which read:

Rule 1604.01 All outboard motors must meet the requirements for a standard motor. Only the modifications listed in Specific Outboard Rules 1203.00 to 1203.2414 will be permitted.

Rule 1604.04 FUEL – Fuels must be commercially available unleaded fuel.

Your in racing, Glenn Burns, Secretary

Formula Future