Wham-o buys Sea Doo rights

Wham-O, Inc., the 55-year-old company that brought us the Hula Hoop and Frisbee, has purchased the licensing rights for water products sold under the Sea-Doo brand name. Terms of the deal, which includes inflatable tubes used for both water and snow under both the Sea-Doo and Ski-Doo trademarks, were not disclosed. The rights had previously been held by Rocky Mountain, Inc., based in Gig Harbor, Wash.

Lake Meredith To Re-Open?
The National Park Service has once again issued an initial ruling in favor of personal watercraft access, this time on Texas’ Lake Meredith. The new draft rules, published Dec. 12 in the Federal Register, allow for continued PWC usage on the majority of the lake, with 10 coves set aside as no-wake zones. The coves are used predominantly for fishing and swimming. The rules also seek to prevent fuel spills into the lake by prohibiting the fueling of PWC in the water, unless done by an attendant at a marina fuel dock. Comment on the draft rule will be open for 60 days.

Bower Leaves IJSBA
Lee Bower, former competition director at the International Jet Sports Boating Association, has left the organization, citing the “lack of funds and insufficient budget.” Before joining the IJSBA, Bower served as the editor of now-defunct Splash Magazine.

Florida Rally Series Expands
Perry Performance Group has confirmed that the Florida Rally Series will be renamed the Florida PWC Rally Series for 2004, a change that reflects the series expansion into Georgia. Four stops will make up the upcoming season’s schedule, including returns to Sebastian and St. Petersburg, Fla., and an all-new location in Savannah, Ga. The popular series will continue to center around a poker run. For more information visit perryperformancegroup.com or request info at flarallyseries@aol.com.

APBA To Take Over Racing?
No one has yet to comment on the record, but the hottest rumor of the moment continues to be the speculation that the International Jet Sports Boating Association will be more or less dissolved, and that the American Power Boat Association will take on the role of sanctioning body for personal watercraft racing. The IJSBA has reportedly lost funding from all five of the major watercraft OEMs, who in recent years had reportedly grown more discouraged with the organization’s efforts. Many saw the spin-off of the American Watercraft Association earlier this year as an indication that the IJSBA’s days were numbered.

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