A memorial and celebration of life for unlimited hydroplane champion George Henley of Eatonville will be held Jan. 30 at Emerald Downs in Auburn, his family announced today.
Henley, 73, who owned Henley’s Silver Lake Resort in Eatonville, died Dec. 14 of a heart attack.
At the helm of the unlimited hydroplane Pay ‘n Pak, he won the Gold Cup on Lake Washington in 1974 when the race returned to Seafair after a seven-year hiatus. That same season he won seven races and the national points championship. He beat all comers, including the “Thunderboat King,” Bill Muncey. He retired from unlimited racing in 1976.
Henley came to the resort on Silver Lake after his parents bought the resort in the 1950s. His boat racing career included outboards, inboards, unlimited hydroplanes and jet boats.
Legendary hydroplane racing designer Ron Jones Sr. of Renton called Henley his most favorite boat racer. “He got boats around the racecourse others could not,” Jones wrote in an online memorial set up for Henley after he died.
The memorial to be held on the second floor of the horseracing track at 2300 Emerald Downs Drive runs from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
For online information about Henley visit here.