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28TH Annual International Tugboat Race on the Detroit River June 19, 2004
*Pictures courtesy Boatnerd.com

With the roar of diesel engines and lots of black smoke, the 28th Annual Detroit-Windsor Tugboat race began on Saturday afternoon. Tugboat races started back in the 1950's and for many years they were discontinued. In 1976 the International Freedom Festival started the tradition once again. In 2003 the International Freedom Festival declared bankruptcy and the future of the race was in limbo. Local Detroit tug man Brian Williams, with help of numerous companies, individuals and the Detroit and Windsor Port Authorities was able to organize the event keeping the tradition alive. 22 tugs took to the river and put on an impressive show for the crowds lined on both sides of the river.

Elisabeth. Mike Nicholls

Stern view. Mike Nicholls

Grey Fox. Mike Nicholls

Stern view. Mike Nicholls

Patricia Hoey. N. Schultheiss

R&R prepares for race. Mike Nicholls

Mike Nicholls

Westcott Dock the boats are decorated. The Joseph J. Hogan sports a new paint job. N. Schultheiss

Joan V. Mike Nicholls

Another view. N. Schultheiss

A friendly race, Karen Andrie crew steps out to talk. Scott Tomlinson

Julie Anne. Mike Nicholls

Karen Andrie. Mike Nicholls

Elisabeth. Scott Tomlinson

Bionic. N. Schultheiss

Norma B. Scott Tomlinson

Bionic. Mike Nicholls

Enterprise. Mike Nicholls

Another view. N. Schultheiss

Karen Andrie. Scott Tomlinson

Under construction, Acushnet sports her new cabins. Mike Nicholls

Huntington. Mike Nicholls

Paul E. No. 1. Scott Tomlinson

Acushnet. N. Schultheiss

"Polish Navy" N. Schultheiss

Tugs start to line up. N. Schultheiss

Julie Anne. N. Schultheiss

Close up. N. Schultheiss

Sinbad arrives. N. Schultheiss

We'll be landing in Canada for the awards ceremony, OPP collects the paper work.

Magnetic decked out for the races. N. Schultheiss

R&R. N. Schulthiess

Elisabeth. N. Schultheiss

J.W. Westcott enters the line up. Mike Nicholls

Joseph J. Hogan. N. Schultheiss

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Preparing for the start. N. Schultheiss

Canadian Navy double checks our paper work. N. Schultheiss

Ready to start. N. Schultheiss

Tug Shannon starts moving for the rolling start. N. Schultheiss

View from the Grey Fox. Fred Miller

Westcott II along side. N. Schultheiss

Capt. Sam Buchanan prepares the Westcott for the race. N. Schultheiss

Rolling start as the tugs head for the starting line below the Ambassador Bridge. N. Schultheiss

Approaching the starting line. N. Schultheiss

Building up speed. N. Schultheiss

R&R moves up. N. Schultheiss

K Sea. N. Schultheiss

Race underway. Mike Nicholls

Field spreads out. Mike Nicholls

Another view. Mike Nicholls

Good start. N. Schultheiss

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Field spreads out. N. Schultheiss

K Sea & Julie Anne. N. Schultheiss

Sinbad rolls through the wake. N. Schultheiss

Patricia Hoey, R&R and Bionic. N. Schultheiss

Joseph J. Hogan. N. Schultheiss

Paul E. No. 1. N. Schultheiss

Leaders pass under the Ambassador Bridge.

Shannon along side Grey Fox. Fred Miller

Moving in close... Fred Miller

Closer... Fred Miller

Along side. Fred Miller

View downriver. N. Schultheiss

View from farther back in the pack. Scott Tomlinson

Scott Tomlinson
John van der Doe

John van der Doe

John van der Doe

Scott Tomlinson

Scott Tomlinson

Scott Tomlinson

Scott Tomlinson

Exhaust smoke fills the river.

Inside the Magnetic's wheel house. Scott Tomlinson

Karen Andrie builds up speed. Scott Tomlinson

Shannon and Grey Fox run neck & neck. N. Schultheiss

Onboard the Westcott. N. Schultheiss

View aft. N. Schultheiss

Karen Andrie gaining. N. Schultheiss

Shannon. N. Schultheiss

N. Schultheiss

Shannon neck and neck with the Grey Fox. N. Schultheiss

View from the Grey Fox. Fred Miller

Westcott tucked in behind. Fred Miller

Another view. Fred Miller

Race to the finish line. Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

USCG Cutter Bristol Bay is the finish line at Dieppe Park in Windsor. Fred Miller

 Wake reaches the Bristol Bay. N. Schultheiss

Grey Fox powers up the fire monitors. Fred Miller

Parade lap off Detroit. N. Schultheiss

Paul E. No. 1 turns for a parade lap. N. Schultheiss

Karen Andrie powers up a fire monitor. N. Schultheiss

Grey Fox with water flowing. N. Schultheiss

Bionic. N. Schultheiss

Parade lap. N. Schultheiss

Fred Miller

Tugs arrive to tie up at the park. N. Schultheiss

Lines thrown ashore. N. Schultheiss

Westcott II finished 3rd overall. N. Schultheiss



The Bristol Bay's ATON barge holds the awards ceremony. N. Schultheiss

Awards. N. Schultheiss

Last place award. N. Schultheiss

Sponsors. N. Schultheiss

Bristol Bay's galley staff kept busy preparing lunch. N. Schultheiss

Bill Hoey accepts the William Hoey Jr. award for finishing 1st in Class 1. N. Schultheiss

Bill Hoey, Jim Storen with Dave Cree Receiving Windsor Port Authority First across Trophy N. Schultheiss

Awards. N. Schultheiss

Steven Olinek/Bob Kerr getting the Class 6 1st place-Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority Trophy. N. Schultheiss

Steven Olinek presents the Class Award to Capt. Sam Buchanan (left) Awards. N. Schultheiss

Most Seasoned Skipper Award went to Bill Hoey. N. Schultheiss

Josephine from Toledo. N. Schultheiss

Arrived late for the race. Mike Nicholls

Stern view. N. Schultheiss

Oceanis from Cape. May NJ. Did not participate in the race. N. Schultheiss

Charter boat Infinity passes. N. Schultheiss

Diamond Belle passes Windsor. N. Schultheiss

Fred Miller

Fred Miller

Tugs docked. N. Schultheiss

Magnetic. N. Schultheiss

Acushnet. N. Schultheiss

Fred Miller

Heading back to the Westcott dock the Huron Maid delivers to the Anderson. N. Schultheiss

Close up. N. Schultheiss

Another view. N. Schultheiss

Stern view. N. Schultheiss

Ferris Marine tugs head back to their dock on the Rouge River. N. Schultheiss



Pictures from the 2003 Tug Race


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