Veteran driver Jim Kropfeld regained the national unlimited hydroplane championship Monday by driving Miss Budweiser to victory in the protested final race of the series.
The turbine-powered craft won the $150,000 Las Vegas Budweiser Silver Cup, surviving a high-speed bumping on the first corner of the 2 1/2-mile oval course on Lake Mead.
Miller American, driven by Chip Hanauer of Seattle, Wash., finished second but failed to retain the national title by a margin of 31 points. Kropfeld, from Cincinnati, Ohio, had a total of 8,500 points in the nine-race series to 8,469 for Hanauer.
Miss Budweiser won both her heats before the final when Kropfeld, 46, gunned her to an average speed of 128.472 m.p.h. and the title.