Westlawn to offer new scholarship

EDGEWATER, Md. - The Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology has begun a new scholarship in conjunction with Boating Magazine entitled, the “Quart-Cup Challenge Scholarship,” which was inspired by a recent record broken by the magazine's executive features editor, David Seidman, Westlawn said in a release today.

Seidman broke the Guinness Book of Records record for most miles per gallon under power in a boat this past August. His record was 103.36 miles per gallon.

The previous recorded record (from the Guinness Book of Records) was 80.78 mpg (67.27 mpg in Imperial gallons), a record set by a group of teenagers in New Zealand in an outboard boat. When contacted about a new record, Guinness said it was no longer interested in maintaining the category. To solve this, Boating Magazine decided to document the record.

At the speeds contemplated, a record attempt using a gallon of gas would take about 27 hours continuous operation, so it was decided to go from a gallon to a quart. (These are U.S. gallons and quarts and statute miles.) This would cut the time needed down to a manageable 7 hours or so.

Seidman got a main hull from Pocock Racing Shells, in Everett, Washington. He converted the shell to an outrigger canoe and outfitted it with a slightly modified stock 2-hp Honda outboard mounted on the after crossbeam.

While initial numbers of 82.8 mpg, at 3 mph (statute), at idle speed broke the record, Seidman wanted to exceed 100 mpg. He contacted Dave Gerr, director of the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology, for a custom propeller specification. Using the new prop increased boat speed by over 30 percent to 4.05 mph at virtually the same fuel consumption.

On Aug. 24, 2004, conditions came together for a documented challenge run, and when the one-quart of fuel ran out the GPS indicated 25.84 statute miles covered; a new record of 103.36 mpg.

“Now, all this is a bit of good fun, but it's also an excellent way for Westlawn students (or prospective Westlawn students) to gain deep insights into the critical concepts of speed and powering, range and fuel efficiency, engine and propeller matching and optimizing hull form,” said Gerr. “All are essential to a sound boat design. To further these insights and enhance design knowledge in general, Westlawn is offering a full scholarship for any one of its four standard modules (in the full Yacht Design Course), or for the one-module Yacht Design Lite Course to anyone who breaks the new record.”

“I may not have gotten into the record books, but now you can,” Seidman said. “Since Guinness doesn't see its worth, we'll keep track of the category [at Boating] - outboard motorboat, greatest distance on one gallon of fuel. All you have to do is let me know that you're going to make an attempt to go farther on a quart of gasoline than I did. I'll send someone to watch and keep you honest. If you do break my record, you'll be awarded Boating Magazine's Quart Cup. You'll have the pride of accomplishment, go into our record books, and get to be the keeper of the Cup - that is, until someone betters you.”

To encourage boaters and budding designers to take their ideas of improving boat efficiency to another level, there are two scholarships that come with winning the Cup:

1. Honda Marine - If you beat the standing record using a Honda outboard, you will be awarded a $5,000 scholarship. This will be made payable to the school of your choice specializing in naval architecture or ocean engineering.

2. Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology will provide a scholarship for the first year (Module 1) of its Yacht Design program or for Yacht Design Lite. (Current Westlawn students will receive a scholarship toward their next Module, or credit for their final Module.) Current tuition value is $2,050 for U.S. students and $2,250 for international students.

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