Drag Racing Unplugged III

Following on from our highly-popular selections of quotes from the 1999 and 2000 seasons, we are pleased to bring you the third annual collection, featuring the finest comments from Eurodragster's 2001 event coverage - and others we didn't publish at the time.

We open with Tog and Sharkman's choices as their own favourite quotes of the year.

Tog's Quote Of The Year

"Top Fuellers are girls' cars. I have bought Kågered a bra"
-- TMFC racer Leif Helander about close friend Micke Kågered's move to Top Fuel

Sharkman's Quote Of The Year

"That's what you get when you take a person out of it!"
-- Erstwhile Sanity Assassin driver Stephen Talbot after Robin Shone runs the Pro ET Toyota's quickest-ever ET

And the rest of the 2001 Drag Racing Unplugged collection...

"We had a noticably permanent crowd around the PT Bruiser all day whilst other race cars on display were, it seemed, receiving little attention at all"
-- Paul Marston at Autosport International

"Don't buy a burger"
-- A timely warning from a crew member of Tony Betts' Fuel FC at Autosport International

"We built the car to what we liked, and then we found a class for it"
-- Sharon Hogarth about her and husband Jon Hogarth's Super Comp 'Vette

"It's never misbehaved - it's so stable. On one run I had a flat rear tyre and I didn't know!"
-- Jon Hogarth at Brentwood

"You can burn out across the start line in Super Comp!"
-- Paul Marston on the pleasures of Super classes

With that camera on your stomach you look like an upside-down dalek
-- Togs buddy Malcolm after spotting him in TV coverage

"Sooner or later your luck goes away, so I am trying to find all the problems before they happen"
-- Super Street Bike racer Graham Dance at the pre-Thunderball Run What You Brung

"That sounded good and Mopar-y"
-- Stephen Talbot, after Pat Talbot warmed up their Super Pro ET dragster at the Easter Thunderball

"I might go to sleep waiting!"
-- Henri Joosten, having to run his Pro Mod in Super Pro ET at the Easter Thunderball

"Their wives and mine are getting very angry!"
-- Henri Joosten after he and his crew spent five nights a week for three weeks working on the car

"We put it in the garage at the end of last season, and it was still there when we went to look for it"
-- Fay Fischer describes off-season work on the Speedflow Super Pro ET dragster

"The engine was being turned over, and your reporter took two steps back to avoid the header blast before noticing that neither the plug leads nor, indeed, Steph were in the car"
-- More evidence of Eurodragster reporter Tog's lack of mechanical savvy

"They are there to wind up Dave. He hasn't noticed them yet"
-- Nemesis TMD Team Mum Linda Wilson, about the garden ornaments in the adjoining Krypton pit

"I always said we need a few hanging baskets"
-- Dave Wilson notices

"Having a 21-year-old wife helps too!"
-- Andy Carter describes a Top Fuel Dragster pilot's fitness regime

"Everyone told us that Mickey Thompsons were no good, but when I checked out the Stock results in National Dragster, all the winners were on MTs!"
-- Super Street racer Rick McCann at the Easter Thunderball

"There were all these boy racers doing one-wheel burnouts and then I did my burnout. And did I do a burnout! The crowd went mental!"
-- Outlaw Anglia racer Bob Hancox sets the record straight at the Doncaster Show

"I'd love to do the full length of the track on the rear wheel"
-- Funny Bike racer Chris 'Cannon' Hannam at the Easter Thunderball

"I tried to tell them that drag racing isn't the most exciting sport in the rain!"
-- Top Fuel Bike racer Ian King, playing host to a TV crew at the Easter Thunderball

"We knew what was wrong, but we didn't know how it got wrong!"
-- Disarming honesty from Super Pro ET racer Martyn Jones

"Al's a great guy. He's been a lot of help, and he waited around for us while we got our act together!"
-- Fuel FC racer Gordon Smith about tuner Alan Jackson

"It wasn't real tyre shake. Both the tyres stayed in contact with the track!"
-- Nemesis TMD Crew Chief Andy Bissett

"When I pulled the chutes they came out sideways!"
-- Fuel FC racer John Spuffard encounters the traditional bracing Easter weather

"I warmed it up in the garden and there was a bang. So I came up here to see if there's anything for sale!"
-- Super Comp racer John McIntyre and his wallet at the Easter Thunderball

"I've never been faster than 117 before! I didn't care about breaking out!"
-- Pro ET racer Steve Wells sets a new Personal Best at the Thunderball

"They phoned the local fire brigade to ask for their attendance during the run-through, and they sent along three pumps and a turntable!"
-- Jet FC pilot Roger Goring encounters overkill at the Performance Bike Show

"If I'm slow off the line then I get a right telling off - Ian and Helen say that I'm sitting in there reading a newspaper. If I'm really slow, they say I'm not just reading the newspaper, I've folded it up and put it under the seat!"
-- Roger Goring reveals the inner secrets of the Firestorm team

"I told him that the time was up, but he shook his head. So I told him again!"
-- Ian Blaylock tries to get Roger Goring to shut the jet down after a flame show

"After the burnout I was getting bits of blower belt in the face"
-- Roy Wilding on the joys of racing slingshots

"I won't be doing any Maltese sixty-foot passes!"
-- Lyndsay Deuchar taking it easy at Super Series 1

"We want to take it nice and easy, have a relaxing weekend and enjoy ourselves - if you stop enjoying it then you should stop doing it"
-- Super Pro ET racer Paula Atkin's husband and Crew Chief Stan at Super Series 1

"I call them Hickory Dickory Dock lights"
-- Paula Atkin changes to a Sportsman Tree

"It wasn't very pleasant for me. I was sitting there hanging on to the fuel shut-off"
-- Gordon Smith describes a wild ride at the Thunderball

"I wanted to go in the left lane so that I could actually see the Tree..."
"So of course I put him in the other lane!"
-- Exchange between Top Fuel Bike racers Steve Woollatt and Ian King at Super Series 1

"The day I start drag racing then everyone else will start losing!"
-- Cannon fires a warning

"I've experienced everything except actually running down the track"
-- Rookie TMD racer Darryl Bradford straining at the leash

"When you get four attempts and don't get it right, you don't deserve to qualify"
-- Graham Dance joins the Disarming Honesty Club

"It took me so long to get out because I wanted to be sure that the fire bottles had worked, I didn't want to get out and watch it burn to the ground!"
-- Fuel FC racer Smax Smith on the first of this year's fireballs

"After that run Thomas came running towards me grinning like a Cheshire cat!"
-- Custom Car Street Eliminator racer Steve Pateman guesses that he ran the first eight in CCSE

"I've never been so happy to run so slow"
-- More disarming honesty from Graham Dance

"The bad thing is that Peter was about one tenth of a second from taking his foot off the throttle because this was only going to be a short pass"
-- Top Fuel Dragster racer Peter Beck's Crew Chief Horst Pauli reflects on a fearsome explosion

"We were just returning the compliment - Anita launched some parts into our pit at the European Finals last year!"
-- Supertwin Top Fuel racer Anders Karling's Crew Chief Christian, after Anders lobbed engine parts an eighth of a mile into Anita Mäkelä's pit

"In my next life, I'm coming back as a weatherman. They get it wrong, they laugh off their mistakes, they get paid a lot and they're celebrities!"
-- Fuel tuner Bill Schultz at the Main Event Press Day

"Reaction time is the cheapest horsepower you can get"
-- TMFC racer Lex Joon

"Apart from the different fuel system, the pistons still go up and down and the crank goes round"
-- Renowned Fuel tuner Jon Wright tunes a Methanol engine

"Hopefully I will make some changes which will scare my Dad!"
-- Supertwin Top Fuel Bike racer Ton Pels' Crew Chief and son Vincent

"It left like - in Finland we have a saying, it was like a cow coming out of a swamp!"
-- A lesson in Finnish colloquialism from Top Fuel racer Anita Mäkelä

"I wrote on the valve covers '6.97 please'! If they don't produce the six then I'll get a sledgehammer!"
-- Pro Stock racer Jari Konola's Crew Chief Sussie Bjorkman

"We need to run better ETs rather than act like a bunch of kids getting it all wrong"
-- Straight talking from TMFC racer Leif Andréasson

"My brain cells are all in there somewhere but I can't feel them"
-- Lex Joon suffers tyre shake at the Main Event...

"Where did it shake?"
-- ...whilst TMD racer Manty Bugeja doesn't notice it

"Staunch Mopar man Stephen Talbot was last heard trying to find a reason to blame Chevy parts"
-- Mopars don't break, especially not Talbot Racing Mopars

"Today we will be tuning for ourselves and not for the crowd!"
-- Tuner Morgan Svensson after Top Fuel Dragster racer Tommy Möller repeatedly pulled wheelies in qualifying at Alastaro

"It's like making a lot of little bets rather than one big one. You're going to win some of them"
-- Dave Wilson's tuning philosophy

"You have to write less!"
-- Svensk Dragracing's Christer Abrahamson, who had to translate Tog's prose into Swedish at Alastaro

"I know it's inside out, and it's staying that way!"
-- Martyn Jones' Crew Chief Crunch and the new awning

"We bodged the clutch. It was half Suzuki and half aftermarket - the lesson is to use the proper stuff!"
-- 9.90 Bike racer Paul Watson tries everything to get that Championship

"We've been through everything on it today because we're bored!"
-- Junior Dragster racer Adam Gleadow's brother Martin during a rain delay

"I went through the traps, and when the chute hit I saw daylight through the body in front of me!"
-- Jet FC pilot Martin Hill notices something amiss

"When you put in a perfect run, it's luck!"
"But with your experience you must be able to make an educated guess on your dial-in?"
"No, it's mainly luck"
-- Martyn Jones, still disarmingly honest after qualifying number one at the Cannonball

"That's a crash, a broken throttle cable, a fire and a near crash on four consecutive runs"
-- Smax Smith, keeping tabs

"A filofax and some garden wire"
-- ...and a pair of Val's old knickers? Funny Bike racer Stephen French describes his new Nitrous bottle warmer

"They got there in time to hear me swearing!"
-- That's how quickly Santa Pod's safety crew got to Custom Car Street Eliminator racer Ian Hook after a crash at the Cannonball

"He got on the radio and asked what the run was. I told him a seventy-three. He came back on the radio and said 'Did you say seventy-three?', I told him yes and he just held the button open on the microphone and cheered all the way down the shutdown area!"
-- Turner Racing TMD Crew Chief Steve Turner about Rob Turner's Personal Best at Gardermoen

"When the engine lights I start the stopwatch, and I want John to have done his burnout, reversed, and put on the pre-stage light in a minute and three quarters. If you noticed that the burnouts were shorter this year, that's why!"
-- Fuel FC Crew Chief Bob Jarrett lets slip a trade secret

"I love it and I get carried away. I said I'd only do a short burnout but when it came to it I thought 'sod it'"
-- Returning Fuel FC racer Norm Wilding pulls a half-track burnout

"At the last race I was running consistent 14.6s. I went home and took out all the glass and changed it for lexan, stripped the doors and the wiring, and today it goes 14.9!"
-- Sportsman ET racer Ian Jackson scratches his head

"It was real John Force stuff, you try to get stopped and get out as quick as you can!"
-- Smax Smith after another fireball

"I'm the only old part left on the bike now!"
-- Retiring Top Fuel Bike racer Brian Johnson

"Bungle has got rods from the box marked 'use only in an emergency'!"
-- Andy Bissett also has the string and sealing wax ready for the Nemesis TMD

"I was off the bike apart from my two hands on the handlebars and I came down on the back bodywork. It was scary"
-- Supertwin Top Fuel Bike racer Stefan Junerud describes a wild ride

"It's frustrating knowing that the car can run 5.8 on full throttle. It's like having a toy you can't open until your birthday!"
-- Lex Joon suffers more tyre shake

"They're girls' cars. You just hit the throttle and steer it!"
-- Leif Helander still feigns disinterest in Micke Kågered's performance in Top Fuel

"It did feel quick. I was hoping it was a four, but I was not sure"
"He looked like a big question mark when we got to him"
-- Micke Kågered and partner and Team Manager Åsa Kinnemar on the immediate aftermath of Micke's first four

"It depends upon what our sponsors want us to do. It's very important what they think - they know it means more money!"
-- Åsa on Kågered Racing's plans for 2002

"It'll take more than that to finish me off!"
-- Comp Bike racer Sarah-Jane head after a 150 mph spill at Shakespeare County Raceway

"Do you want to try that again in English?"
-- Nostalgia dragster crew member to Tog at Las Vegas Motor Speedway

"I definitely saw people running!"
-- Pro ET racer Robin Shone scatters the media with an out-of-shape wheelie

"They've got to be at Triumph Herald or Al Golding level or they're not going on it!"
-- Stephen Talbot sets strict criteria for Robin Shone's wheelie bars

"I thought that yesterday's first run was crummy and it turned out to be a 9.3"
-- Mystified Pro ET racer Rob Faulkner

"Scotty's a shrewd bloke, I'll have to get him to redlight or something!"
-- VW Pro racer Keith Gadenne's game plan against Scotty Evison

"It's wonderfully scary!"
-- Top Fuel Bike in three words from Brian Johnson

Eurodragster.com aims to bring you links to all the best European Drag Racing web sites. To add your site to Eurodragster's listings, simply email links@eurodragster.com with your URL and a little information about your site and we'll do the rest. When you update your site, drop us a line at news@eurodragster.com and we'll feature your site in our "What's New" section.

Eurodragster.com is a non-profit-making organisation run by a small group of Drag Racing enthusiasts for the sole purpose of promoting European Drag Racing. If you can help us to meet the modest cost of hosting this web site by advertising here, please email webmaster@eurodragster.com. We're sure you'll find our rates extremely competitive.