Trevor Matthews, in Griffiths Cup winner Assassin, should add the Victorian Unlimited 0pen Speedboat Championship to his long list of successes at Lake Learmonth tomorrow.
The probable absence of other top class hydroplanes - especially Pat Hawthorn's Black Knight - gives Assassin a clear edge over the field on the score of speed.

Her main opposition may come from displacement boats.

The big skiffs and runabouts - notably Rhonda Babe II, Mandy, Mooneyes, Chickel, Debbie Too and Cheeta - are good, but are at least 20 mph slower that an unlimited class hydroplane.

They must rely on greater mechanical reliability, and better cornering ability, defeat hydroplanes in races and often do it over a short, or "club" course.

But the long straights of a championship course give hydroplanes plenty of time to get away from the buoys, and accelerate to speeds well in excess of 128 mph.

Danger to Assassin on the score of speed is "Jetman" Tommy Watt's Maria, an experimental boat which has failed. Tommy has two motors (a 327 Corvette and a 343 Impala) in tandem, driving a single screw through special gearbox mounted between them.

On his first trials, the sheer weight of the motors sank the boat.
Second time out Maria performed slugishly
Watts has since replaced a bent crank shaft in the 327 motor.

On experience in the United States, there is no reason why a tandem - motored hydroplane should not be a world-beater.
But there must grave doubts a Watts succeeding with two such badly matched motors.
Moreover, the tandem set-up probably needs a much bigger hull.

Assassin's last defeat was in the Australian hydroplane championship at Goolwa, S.A. last January. She had the race when a water hose jumped off the block.

Since then, the big Bendigo boat has taken the Eppalock Gold Cup, Kimbolten Cup, E. C. Griffiths Cup (the Australasian championship), and V.S.B.C.'s new Commodore’s Cup – in each case without being fully extended.

Championship races are usually dominated by one outstanding boat but there’ll be hot competition in all major classes at tomorrow’s State titles meeting (Victorian Unlimited Open Title).

Madden, T. 1974, 'Look Out Assassin,' Sporting Globe, 29 Nov, p. 12