Flamholc at Snowbirds this weekend.
3rd December: We last reported on the racing activities of hyperactive expat Swedish doorslammer racer Adam Flamholc in March. Since then he has covered thousands of miles in the US, made racing visits to Russia and Sweden, won his first no-prep title, entered into No Prep Kings and built a doorslammer for son Mattias and crewman William Serler to race.
Back in March, Adam did two races in one crazy weekend when he qualified his Corvette on 19th at NMCA Musclecar Mayhem at Bradenton Motorsports Park, then he took his blower and various other parts off the Vette and placed it on his big tyre Viking Nova II, driving to do some 'Arm Drop' racing at Powerhouse Motorsports Park, Fountain, Florida on Saturday 20th. There was a problem with the 'Vette as both front wheels were found 10 minutes before his run to be cracked, however thanks to another expat European Rene Meierhofer, a spare set of wheels were borrowed, and he went on to record 3.704/205.07 to qualify #3. His first round win in the Nova the following day are on Youtube courtesy National No Prep Association. The Nova suffered some front end damage and the race was on to repair the nose.
After that he went back to Bradenton on Sunday to race his '63 Corvette, where he ran a winning first round 3.781/204.51. Adam improved to 3.71 in the second round but went down to Randy Weatherford's 3.61 when his engine shut off at 450ft.
April - “Street Outlaw Fastest in America”
The damage to the Nova was made good by crewmen William Serler and Thomas Monsenego, Adam joking that "We have become bodywork experts since we started no prep racing!" The quick repair was needed as the team headed out for a three week road trip, stopping at Turn Key Speedshop in Texas to get the front of the Nova painted and completed. The destination, after 45 hours drive, was Las Vegas for Discovery Channel’s “Street Outlaw Fastest in America”, his first race on the street. Thomas said "It’s definitely really different that what we’re used to but we love it". Adam tested on 31st March and 5th April and ran the race on 9th April. He said "I really like racing on the streets! It's like going back to my roots! When I grew up in Sweden and started racing, we didn't have any tracks, so basically every Wednesday and Saturday we found places to race. And its all coming back to me now!" The only problem was a steel body was required to be legal for street racing (if you see what we mean).
Once back at his Cape Coral, Florida base Adam concentrated on tuning customer Steve Wiley's '63 Corvette at a Pro Mod race at Xtreme Raceway Park, Ferris, Texas on 18th April where Steve qualified second and won the race with a best run of 3.71 @ 210 (new PB for speed). Steve commented "Adam helped turn a car that I’ve been fighting for about 2 years into a badass hotrod that was on rails! Thank you for all the help!"
May - ADRL rain-off replaced by RODS
Preparation for Adam's two next races in Texas was next, first to the Texas Motorplex for the ADRL Dragpalooza season opener April 30-May 1st, then with the Nova for Brawl In The Falls 2.0 No-Prep on May 7-8 at Wichita Falls, TX. Both cars went into Adam's 18 wheel trailer however the day before the ADRL event the sanctioning body took the decision to cancel the race with inbound bad weather likely to ruin the weekend.
Not to be deterred, Adam found the RODS Pro Mod event at Albuquerque Dragway, New Mexico starting 30th April and proceeded to drive through the night to get there in time. Even taking account of the drive there were other challenges. Adam said "Always interesting to race at new tracks! This is a high elevation track, altitude is 8000-9000ft above sea level. This will be a fun challenge changing gear ratios etc to try to get the car right for the conditions here." He qualified second despite the car "Keeping blowing the tires off half way down the track. We made a bunch of changes to the car to soften it up, so hopefully it’ll go down today!" It did, Adam qualifying first with a 4.163/165.62, but there were ignition problems on that run. "On the last q run the car shut off before the finish line. We changed everything in the ignition system, tried to run it straight on the mag, just couldn't get it to fire." Running out of time to try to fix the car, Adam and William packed up and headed towards Texas.
At Witchita Falls, Adam brought out the Nova but lost first round. Adam explained "The track was better then what I expected down low, so I took a bit to much power out of it, then at the top end it got lose, so I pedalled it a couple of times, and lost by a car length." The team found out the source of the ignition problem at Turn Key Speed Shop a couple of days later, where the Nova got treated to a new, lighter front end, hood, doors and a silver paint job whilst the Vette was being tested at Xtreme Raceway Park, Ferris before the following weekend's (14th-15th May) round two in the Texas outlaw Pro Mod series. Adam admitted "We didnt really put the work needed in on my Corvette to make it right for outlaw Pro Mod racing".
The following weekend (22nd May) was Bobby Wildchild's Big Tyre Cash Days no prep race at US19 Dragway Albany, Georgia, with the Nova. Adam won the race in the hot conditions, his first no prep race win. He commented: "It's a lot of work between races having both the Pro Mod Corvette and The Viking Nova, and changing setups almost every week, and its just me and William that works on the cars, but he ain't complaining, and make sure it gets done! This is the first race we won in No prep, I want to dedicate it in honour of Daisy Mae, a 6 year old girl lost her life a couple of weeks ago, this win is for her, Andy Cowen, Kayleigh Cowen and their families."
June - No Prep Kings
Back to Florida, Adam undertook preparation for his trip to Russia (a race in Bowling Green, Kentucky 29th-30th May with NHRA inviting 8 outlaw Pro Mod teams to run at their divisional event was passed up), followed by testing the Nova at Orlando Speed World Dragway and then to National Trail Raceway, Hebron, Ohio for No Prep Kings 5th-6th June. He said "This was our first No Prep Kings event, and it was huge! A ton of people, a ton of cars and good racing. We ran in the class Future NPK, and made some good runs, getting to the semi finals". His run was spoilt by a failed Bruno convertor, following a staging delay, causing the car to overheat.
The next No Prep Kings race was June 18-19 at West Palm Beach International Raceway. Adam said "Not a good weekend of racing for us, on the first test run the ring gear on the starter broke, and it took some time to fix it, so we missed both grudge/test runs. Then in first round of eliminations the car shut off 3 seconds into the run.. Haven't looked at it yet, so I dont know why. But, it was great to race close to home with family at the track! And the young Flamholc Racing crew worked hard in the Florida summer heat!"
July/August/September - Russia and Sweden
This was Adam's last race in US for a while as he headed to Russia (RDRC to help with tuning and technical things at the Russian Drag Racing Community, particularly with the team of Dmitry Samorukov. Because of Covid, its been hard to travel overseas, but yesterday I got a Visa, so on Wednesday Im heading over! Gonna be good to meet all my friends in Russia again. I also hope to be able to see family and friends in Sweden, that I haven't seen for almost 2 years now, also because of Covid."
The first race was at RDRC Racepark in Zhukovsky, Moscow, Russia on 3rd-4th July, but Adam's participation was limited due to waiting on parts to finish the RDRC Technology Viper of Dmitry Samorukov and his own Mustang, however the dragster of Dmitry Lisin which Adam tuned went 7.47 for a PB improvement of 1.5s. Adam's family were in Sweden where they held a early 20th birthday party for his daughter Isabell, but Adam was unable to leave Russia due to covid-related visa restrictions and, worse, went down with food poisoning. The second race at RDRC Racepark (first round of the RDRC champsionship) was on 30th July, however the first day was rained off limiting qualifying. It also rained pretty hard after first round of eliminations, so the race got canceled. In the RDRC Technology team, Dmitry qualified first with the Viper, and won first round. Adam's Mustang had issues with the brakes and Dmitry Lisin's dragster suffered a broken pump in the transmission broke. "Its not easy to find parts for these cars here in Russia, or to get parts shipped here," In the event, the other cars of Dmitry Samorukov and Dmitry Lisin were able to run, but Adam's did not.
Mid August Adam took a break flying back to Florida and then on 24th August to Sweden to support Rimbert Vahlström's '53 Vette Bankrobber Top Doorslammer to #1 qualifier at Malmo before the rains came, then heading back to Moscow for round three of the RDRC championship. The race, scheduled for 28th-29th August, got postponed, making the 17th-19th September race at RDRC Racepark and 2nd-3rd October at Fort Grozny Autodrom in Chechnya the final round. As well as preparing the cars, there was time for tourism and exercise, and a trip back to Florida. In the Russian Drag Racing Championship only one race was completed this season, and in that event Dmitry Samorukov lost the final on a holeshot, so he ended up second in points.
October - making history in the NHRA
Adam returned to Florida on 4th October, however wasn't able to run the No Prep Kings in Tulsa 9th-10th October as he was still waiting on parts. But at that stage he was starting to work on a Chevy Beretta, named Odin, that he plans to do some street racing with son Mattias Flamholc and crewman William driving, which they tested at Bradenton, the pair due to license soon. The Viking Nova has also been treated to a new engine however Adam was unable to attend his second no prep race in October due to viral pneumonia.
After recovering from illness, Adam embarked on his biggest road trip of the year, Cape Coral-Texas-Oklahoma-Las Vegas and back, around 5600 miles. The Texas stop was Brawl In The Falls 3.0 No-Prep at Wichita Falls on 23rd-24th October was a good race for Adam, reaching the final. He said "I lost the final to Brandon in his super cool Studebaker, the final was our first run in the left lane, and I had problems seeing the Christmas Tree, I deep staged and left way late. Brandon made a solid pass and deserved the win!"
As reported on 23rd October Dimitry Samorukov licensed for the NHRA race at Tulsa on 25th October and became the first Russian to race with NHRA. At the Las Vegas race, Dmitry Dmitry raced the same Pro Modified Camaro that he competed in the 2019 FIA Championship and plans to race in the 2022 Championship, which will be his main focus as well as some NHRA dates in the US. Although there were electrical issues in qualifying, Dmitry had his first NHRA round win at the expense of former champion Stevie 'Fast' Jackson to the delight of his and Adam's fans.
November - World Street Nationals
Adam went to the World Street Nationals at Orlando Speedworld Dragway with the Corvette, the first time he raced it since mid-May. "The Thursday test day was cancelled by rain, then on Friday we waited in line for 3 hours then when we where gonna run the starter broke. Saturday in Q2 the car with a new engine, shut off after half a second. We got one test run and one qualifying run in, and I missed the tuneup on both of those. We had other issues as well, like the blower starter didnt work, MSD point box went bad." Adam worked on the car and returned to Bradenton to test on 20th and 21st November with a best eighth mile time of 3.734/202.94 (0.941 60ft) lifting to a 5.999/184.04 at the quarter.
December - Snowbirds
Adam will be racing this weekend in the 50th Annual Snowbird Outlaw Nationals at Bradenton Motorsports Park in Pro Modified (1/8 mile). In testing yesterday he recorded a best of 3.714/203.22 with a 0.935 60ft time. He said "On the first test run, I had it a bit too aggressive, it almost made it, but broke the tires lose at the first gearshift. We calmed it down a bit and made a good run!" The race should be a barnburner with 50 Promods all trying for a winning purse of $50,000. So good luck and stay safe to Adam.
You can see streaming video coverage of the Snowbird Outlaw Nationals at Floracing from 21:00 GMT tonight (subscription required) and media coverage at David Hilner photography.
3rd December: A very Happy Birthday from us at Eurodragster.com today to Super Pro ET racer Steve Saunders, Outlaw Anglia racer Brian Nixon, and expat Norwegian Top Alcohol Dragster racer Julie Nataas. No news update yesterday but we hope Funny Car racer John Spuffard, Pro Mod racer Dave Pollen, Robinson Race Cars constructor Luke Robinson and Outlaw Street racer Dave Mahoney had a great day.
Thanks to Drag Seen publisher Paul Martin for letting us know that Drag Seen 2 is now officially sold out, and sales have raised £390.43 for Cancer Research UK.
Kieran has uploaded his Top 10 Drag Cars of 2021 to his Mk1Kieran Youtube channel. He said "This list consists of cars I filmed on track throughout this year and includes some awesome new builds and stand out performances at Santa Pod Raceway. As always it was really hard to narrow it down to just 10 that I haven't picked in previous years, This is just my personal choice and lets me make a fun video in the off season which hopefully you all enjoy!"
1st December: Double National Sportsman ET champion Dan Holloway has written in to tell us of his latest project which will see him change class for 2022:
Flame and Thunder in the year 2000 and 5 year old me was taken to my first ever event at Santa Pod by my parents. I remember the jet cars of the time, the huge bonfire, the cracking fireworks and all that goes with, but the biggest aspect of my first event I still remember to the day was experiencing the noise and speed of the cars that this unique sport has to offer.
Fast forward through the following number of years which saw me start to go to race meetings with my Dad Adrian, who crewed for our good friend Dave Ward in Pro and Super Pro with the Rampage nostalgia funny car, where at a national event I would see a junior dragster for the first time. Dad! Dad! Can I drive one too?! And so eventually for my eleventh birthday I got the chance to drive the SPRC junior; I was hooked. Unfortunately my parents weren't financially interested in funding such a venture (can't think why?!) so I had to watch the other lucky guys and gals my age race them instead, as I continued to go to every event and help Mr. Ward with his 'grown up' car. My Dad's words at the time after declining my proposal of junior drag racing are still remembered to this day - "when you're old enough, you'll be able to race in big cars" - well having been officially an adult for 8 years now, I wish he'd told me at the time that it isn't as easy as that! However I said to myself at that time that one day, somehow, I'd be one of those lucky ones who gets the chance to race what I called a 'grown up' car.
I made my drag racing debut in 2018 in Truck Norris, my cracking little Chevy S10 SS pickup, in Sportsman ET, coming third in my first event and winning the second. 2019 saw my first full season, taking my first championship. In that same time period I purchased and built up my procharged Foxbody Mustang aptly named No Fox Given, debuted it in the Covid Cup series in 2020, blew the head gasket in the first event and believed to have done a bit of bottom end damage too, so sidelined it and jumped into Truck Norris for the following few events, winning the National Finals and finishing the series runner up.
That first event and debut for my Foxbody Mustang saw brothers Dave and Stu King come by and watch a spot of drag racing and take an interest in what me and my Dad had done with the Fox. They're mainly of F1 stock car racing background, you know that roundy roundy stuff, but love their drag racing too and are friends of whom I've known through Dave Ward for a number of years, as Dave King painted the chromoflair paint on the Rampage funny car. The event ended and I received a phone call from Dave Ward saying he'd just got off the phone with Dave King who had a proposal for me. Dave and Stu had been piecing an altered together for a number of years prior to this point, but the project had stalled in the last few years due to various reasons and it was just sitting in the garage waiting to be finished, eager to be let loose again on the 1/4 mile. With neither of them able to offer the time needed to finish the car, would I be interested in finishing it off...and then subsequently race it. I don't think Dave Ward had finished his sentence in full to me over the phone before I replied a resounding yes! All of a sudden the boyhood dream of racing a fully fledged 'grown up' car was about to come true.
This meant my Foxbody would have to wait for now, as me and my Dad had a new project to undertake. He hasn't told me he's grown tired of the next project I've brought forward to the table yet, so he must still like doing it! Upon first seeing it, the altered to the naked eye looked pretty close to being track ready, and it was thought to be too. Named Rattler, the striking rattle snake airbrushed to the gorgeous red paint looked fantastic, coupled with a roof chop from the original mould and a big block Chevy; I was more than sold on it. It's the ex-Wobble car that competed in Supercharged Outlaws many moons ago; a Steve Plueger funny car chassis that used to house a rather enormous supercharged methanol burning hemi, so with it's now mild big block Chevy the chassis will be saying its thank-yous in comparison.
We started going over the car, and to cut a very long story short, it was found the engine was unfortunately a bit worse for wear, to put it lightly, and being an already 60 thou over 2 bolt main 454 truck block it wasn't going to be viable to continue with it given the extent of the damage. A new one was needed. This meant the plans to be out in 2021 with the altered were quickly curtailed and with a broken Mustang I turned back to my ol' faithful Truck Norris, with whom we went onto win a second national championship with. I managed to source a new build but mild 489BBC from Lee Huxley on behalf of Neil Bell, which we took straight to Hauser to be gone over, before making its way to the Williams Brothers for a dyno tune. I wanted an engine that ran on pump fuel, would do 'laps' all day long without breaking a sweat and be low maintenance, and this engine should prove to be just that. Stick something with a bit under 600hp into what's effectively a shopping trolley and it should go just fine, with goals of anywhere in the mid to low 9s, hopefully entering into Pro ET providing everything checks out with the tagging of the chassis and all the safety bits and bobs that goes with. It's going to be a year of learning the car and learning how to best drive it, trying to dial it in to some sort of consistency, and have a damn good time doing it. Of course writing this article has put a bit of pressure on to actually get the car done and out on time for the start of the 2022 season, but sometimes you need a bit of that in life to get things done!
This is a very exciting prospect for me, my drag racing dream coming to life, and this wouldn't be possible without Dave and Stu, putting their faith in me and my Dad to bring their car to the track after so many years of ownership, of which I cannot express my thanks enough. I hope we can do the car and you guys proud. See those of you at the Dinner and Dance who are going, otherwise see you all at the track.
Wild Bunch 2021 prize presentation.
1st December: Many thanks to Wild Bunch co-ordinator Claire Meaddows for sending her account of their 25th Annual Prize Presentation which was held on Saturday, 27th November at Drayton Manor, Tamworth. This was a fantastic night, enjoyed by all, says Claire:
Many thanks to our great MC Paul Wright, who did a wonderful job as always, calling the winners, reading the citations and doing so with great style! Thank you also to our fab DJ Stuart who has given us many years of great discos and really enjoys joining in with celebrating our winners!
All the various Series winners were presented with their awards, with the biggest winners of the night being The Marras Pete and Rob Brown (pictured right with partners and crew Natalie Long and Hayley Fyfe) who, with their awesome Rebel slingshot, WON every Series we run! This was their first time winning any Series! They won the 25th Anniversary Wild Bunch Series, the 6th Spirit of Nostalgia Challenge, the 9th Springbridge MSUK Challenge, (held over the 4 MSA events that the Wild Bunch compete in) and the 23rd Roy Wilding Nostalgia Race Cars Series, as well as the SPRC Championship for Wild Bunch, to be awarded in January. Of note, the twins had both of their cars in the Top 4 of the Wild Bunch Series, with Wrathchild finishing 3rd! This is the first time this has been done! Many Congratulations to Pete and Rob for their wins, and to all those who finished in the Top 4, and the Top 10 in the Wild Bunch Series.
The Wild Bunch would like to thank all their sponsors and those who have provided great services this year! Bob Hawkins of Springbridge Direct Ltd, for his longstanding and ongoing support, and our host of other event trophy and prize money sponsors this season: MJC Property Solutions, Sutton Soda Blasting, Team Ratcatcher Racing, Matt Fuller of Team Oblivion, Ian Wild of WildCat Racing and Steve Cassisi of Piston Rings & Things (awesome bespoke unique trophies!). Thank you also for amazing bespoke trophies at the Hot Rod Drags to Elaine Southworth of Coolengineeredart. Plus a massive thank you to Photog extraordinaire Callum Pudge of Pudgey’s Pictures for the brilliant photos for our Top 10 and other winners!
We would also like to hugely thank each and every one at Santa Pod for all they have done to run such a fantastic season in difficult circumstances this year! What an amazing team! We massively appreciate all they have done to provide excellent events for us to race at! You are all stars!
There were presentations made during the evening, including to Secretary Lynne Coulsell, and Race Co-ordinator, Treasurer and GM Claire Meaddows for all their efforts. Gifts were given to all the lovely ladies attending. Flowers were given to Claire and Angie Woods, kindly donated by Mark Coulsell of Team Limited Funz.
There were more special presentations made including some crystal stars to commemorate our WB Silver Anniversary, to founder and first Chairman Roy Wilding, and longtime 13-year Chairman Chris Hartnell. It was brilliant to have both Roy and Chris there to celebrate the occasion, and also to present their trophies personally!
We also presented commemorative crystal stars to our current highly valued committee members: Mark Coulsell, Dave Williams, Bob Hawkins, Steve Cassisi and Mark Hartnell and to GM Claire Meaddows for that role.
We also have a star to send to Tony Smith in recognition of all of his years of service on the committee (and get well soon Tony from us at Eurodragster.com).
Thank you to all these wonderful people for all they have done for the Wild Bunch over the years and for all they continue to do, it is so much appreciated!
In addition, the winners of all the Wild Bunch Special Merit Awards were announced, and are shown below:
Big Bang Trophy: Bob Hawkins with Time Traveller II
Fastest time by a British-engined dragster (Sponsored by Martin Holgate): Tim Roy in Boston Straggler II - 9.121
Fastest MPH: Mark Coulsell in Ballbreaker with 161.94 mph
Quickest E.T.: Bob Hawkins in Time Traveller II 7.800
Best Newcomer: Steve Garlant in Sonic Attack
Best Dragster/Radical: Phil James in Rampage
Best Slingshot: Andy Clifford in Snake Eyes
Best Altered: Steve Garlant in Sonic Attack
Best Turned Out: Andy Clifford and Team Roll the Dice Racing in Snake Eyes
Best Achievers: Pete and Rob Brown of Wrathchild & Rebel Racing
Perseverance Award: The Heaven family of Slimline Racing with Tight Fit
Derek and Brenda Annable trophy: Chris and Callum Swinchatt of Kings N/W
C & C Sportsperson: Jim Tanner of Shindigger
Crew of the Year: Hayley Fyfe & Natalie Long, George & Julie Brown and Rob & Pete Brown of Wrathchild & Rebel Racing
Scottie Durrant Above & Beyond Award: Team Limited Funz Racing with Ballbreaker
Personal Achievement (Daddy Cool Sag Award): Warren Rowlands & Angie Woods & Team Destiny’s Angel
Crazy Chris Showmanship Award: Pete & Rob Brown of Wrathchild & Rebel Racing
Plus there was a new award, the Driver Dave Memorial Bell - Kept Calm and Carried on! in loving memory of Dave Rowlands. This was presented to Mark Hartnell.
The greatest Wild Bunch accolade of the evening was as always, the Don Garlits ‘Spirit of Drag Racing’ Shield, the most prestigious award in the Wild Bunch, which represents sportsmanship, achievement, perseverance, commitment, presentation and a host of other attributes. The 2019 winners, The Marras of Team Wrathchild & Rebel Racing, presented the Shield to the 25th winners: Team Limited Funz - Mark & Lynne, Steve & Anna, Harley & Ada. This is the 2nd time that this outstanding team have won the award, making them the first team to ever win it twice! Very well deserved! Huge Congratulations to the whole team on this achievement, a very popular win!
We also held a raffle to raise funds for the club, so we would like to say many thanks to all who donated prizes.
The night proceeded with champagne for some, dancing, cheers, hugs and laughter all round. It was an honour and a delight to be with such a great Bunch of lovely people!
Many congratulations to all our winners. We can’t wait until 2022 to be back out at the drags for another fantastic season! Full info can be found on the WB website www.the-wild-bunch.co.uk.
Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy, healthy, dry, safe and quick New Year to all racers and teams, marshals and officials, track and safety crews, photographers, media, promoters, managers and of course Eurodragster.com staff, who all work so hard (Thanks! - Editor). Thanks to everyone for all they do for this sport of Drag Racing we all love so much! See you all at the drags next season!
Kelly tapped to write VP Golden History.
1st December: Eurodragster.com sponsor VP Racing Fuels, Inc., a world leader in fuel technology and product innovation, has commissioned Jim "JK" Kelly to author a book chronicling the company’s first fifty years in business, 1975-2025.
"There probably isn’t one element of VP and its history that Kelly wasn’t here for or was close to until he retired in 2015," stated Bob Merz, Director, Brand Management & Licensing at VP. "With his knowledge of the company’s personnel, suppliers, affiliations, their challenges, and accomplishments, he was the obvious choice to write this book."
Kelly served in various capacities in his thirty-plus years with VP, including Regional Manager and also as Director of Sales & Marketing. While Kelly retired to write novels, six to date, Kelly continued to work with the company as a marketing consultant. His most recent novel, Deadly Driver is a fictional thriller about a Formula 1 driver who’s been forced to work for the CIA. That novel has received excellent reviews from world champion racers and the media.
"My first experience with VP dates back to the mid-’70s in San Antonio when the company was just an upstart going after the big players in the industry like 76, Sunoco, Elf, and the rest," said Kelly. "I told my tale in the novel Fuelin' Around, and now VP’s asked me to recount the whole story. It’s a remarkable one, and I’m honored they’ve chosen me to tell it." You can buy Jim's books from his web site jkkelly.com.
VWDRC celebrates 2021, plans 2022.
29th November: The annual VW Drag Racing Club AGM and prizegiving gathering took place this weekend. Starting with a karting race at Formula Fast Karting in Bletchley, appropriately divided into Pro and Sportsman categories, the event moved to Wetherspoons in Midsummers Place Milton Keynes where prizes were given out; the AGM was held on Sunday at Jury’s Inn nearby.
The trophies presented, with congratulations to all racers, crew and others involved in the club for another successful year, were:
VW Pro Championship winner: James Hodson
VW Pro Championship runner-up: Adrian Solly
VW Sportsman Championship winner: Rob Creswell
VW Sportsman Championship runner-up: Jon Crawford
VW Heads Up Championship winner: Jacob Bailey
VW Heads Up Championship runner-up: Paul Jordan
Dennis Cox memorial trophy (for highest consistent qualifier): Laurence Clark (pictured top)
Brian Burrows Rookie of the Year trophy: Jack Gooding (pictured middle)
Wagenmaster Driver of the Year: Paul Jackson (pictured bottom)
RNJ Motorsport Car of the Year: Paul Jackson
Becky Sutton Memorial trophy (for services above and beyond to the Club and the Club spirit): Luke Stevenson
Also at the event announcements were made about 2022, all events taking place at Santa Pod Raceway. The VWDRC are going BIG for 35th year, and have pulled together a huge prize fund of £20,000 for the club which is for the championship and its club days.
The VW Pro and VW Sportsman championships will take place at UK Motorsport governed events as follows:
White Label Business Consulting
Darkside Developments Performance Diesel Tuning
Hangar 30 race car preparation
The Car Kitchen
Thanks also go to associate sponsors:
BJ Bates Electrical
European Front Wheel Drive
Harvey Property Services
WRP Paint and Restoration
32 Speed Shop
The VW Heads Up championship, with £500 to the Champion, will take place at the following lifestyle events:
There will be a trial for the 2022 season of the lower index of VW Sportsman moving to 11.99 from 12.99. This will bring it inline with other national classes whilst having no change on VW Pro. It means that there will be an overlap, so that racers who run in the 12’s have a choice as to which class they wish to enter and what they are legal for.
A VWDRC Hall of Fame will be established, incorporating Honorary Lifetime Membership as well as new nominees proposed by members and decided by the Committee.
Those wishing to join the VWDRC can do so, before rates increase from 1st January 2022, by going to vwdrc.bigcartel.com.
Tina Hambidge's Funeral.
29th November: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for letting us know that the funeral of Tina Hambidge will take place at Kingsdown Cemetery Swindon SN25 6SG on Friday 17th December 2021 at 2.15pm, anyone wishing to attend will be made welcome.
Funny Cars Colouring Book launched.
29th November: Thanks to Darren West of Power Race Graphics and RAD Design Lines for telling us about the latest in his series of colouring books, designed for artists of all ages. Darren writes:
I am very excited to announce our brand new RAD Design Lines 'Funny Cars' colouring book is out today and available now to purchase from our website. 'Funny Cars' is the second in the series of Drag Racing design and colouring books and features some of the most popular funny car body styles in the history of the class. Printed on heavyweight high quality paper, we managed to squeeze a few more pages in this time of our own exclusive design and colouring blank template outlines. Expect to see some very cool funny cars to design the graphics and create the colour schemes for! This is a great Christmas gift for the colouring kids and the funny car fans!
Huge thanks to all who pre-ordered the book - those orders ship today - Monday 29th November. 'Funny Cars' ships internationally - just head over to our website to order your copy! Shop now at www.raddesignlines.com.
The RAD Design Lines mission continues to inspire and encourage young people to unleash their creativity!
Monica Öberg Racing TF operation for sale.
29th November: "Every fairy tale has an ending... also this one." After a 35 year Top Fuel career, Monica Öberg has announced that her whole Top Fuel operation is for sale and those interested should contact Dan Soderberg for further information on +46 706975788 or by e-mail at Dan@monicaoberg.se.
Monica's team was founded in 1979 and was co-owned by her and chief mechanic Dan Söderberg. Based in Piteå, Northern Sweden, the team started competing in Top Fuel class in 1982, becoming successful mainly at home but also internationally. Monica is a three-time Swedish champion (1986, 1989 and 1992) and in 1992 won the prestigious European Top Fuel Association championship, held in the five years before the FIA Championship came into being.
In 1997 and for several years after, she competed in the FIA Championship, on a limited basis always being budget-conscious and her final FIA race as a driver was the Scandinavian Internationals in 2016. The team returned with Jöran Persåker as driver at the 2018 Tierp Internationals.
Monica had a special affinity with the Midnight Sun Internationals race which was held annually at Piteå Raceway near her home and many of her quickest runs in the low 5s at 280mph+ were set there.
The car that is for sale, with all spare parts, was built by Lars-Goran Eriksson of ME Racing Service in 2010. You can see video of it being started up in 2016 at this Youtube link.
We wish Monica and Dan a long and happy retirement, and thanks to them for providing us with thrills and spectacle at the track over so many years.
Malta Drag Racing Association announces 2022 schedule.
27th November: The calendar for events held by the Malta Drag Racing Association has been released. The dates for your diary are:
A meeting of the association including trophy presentation for the last event will take place on 17th December 2021 at 19:30.
Whilst we are looking at Malta, the latest video posting by Kieran to his Mk1Kieran Youtube channel of the 2021 Malta Finals held on 11th-14th November. Kieran says "Big thank you to Konrad D'Anastasi for letting me use his footage again this year! Konrad is the resident videographer at Hal Far Raceway and films every single run! Check out his YouTube channel at here."
Picture credit: Shawn Mifsud
Pelle's speech restored.
27th November: It was great to see Pelle Lindelöw at the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame gala last weekend for his induction alongside long time friend and co-owner Gunnar Elmqvist. Pelle has been in touch to tell us that his acceptance speech was not the full story:
"Gunnar and I had an idea how to conduct and express our feelings and thankfulness for the induction. I should start, Gunnar should then take over and I should finish. But our strategy didn't work out as planned and all of a sudden I found myself back at our dinner table, but with the very exciting part II of my speech unspoken. Thanks so much for a fantastic evening with great company from all my friends in the British drag racing family that we now feel part of.
We, P&G Racing, have had a fantastic career no doubt about that.
It all started after our first visit at Santa Pod in July 1972 (click here for Pelle's video), and I was totally blown away. Skilton, Priddle and all the others including a bunch of teams from Sweden, Lantz/Jönsson’s Plymouth, Gunne Back’s Corvette, Ryman/Larsson’s Mustang f/c among others. We were travelling to the UK in our three Renault 4CV’s. First impression of the facility and all the cars and crowd, it was all mind boggling. If someone had said that Gunnar and I should be owning and racing a Top Fuel dragster 10 years later, I would never have believed that. Not in my wildest dreams.
Back at home after the UK trip we planned to build a motor for a Renault and put it in one of our Renaults. After some consideration we realized that using a street car wouldn’t work, so we bought another 4CV and a R16 TS (hemi) motor. First year with the car we went to as many races as we possibly could, best E/T was 15.2 sec. Not a real threat to anyone but good learning for the future for Gunnar and myself. In September we took a very quick decision to load the car and travel to UK to join the other swedes and go to the Snetterton season finale (click here for Pelle's video). Our Renault was placed in the Competition Altered class where we among others had Barry Sheavills in his “Stagecoach” and several other Jag and small block motorized cars. But our 1.6-liter Renault engined car without handicap couldn’t match any of them and we fell short in the first round of elimination. At the distribution of price money after the race we received £3 for our efforts but were given a fiver as the treasurer thought our car was sweet. I would have preferred another judgement, but we were happy for the two extra pounds. Could make a fortune out of this if we’d continued a couple of hundred years more.
We realized that we reached the end of the possibilities with the little Renault, so we built a dragster with the Revell model of Tony Nancy’s car as the role model. We looked at the picture on the box and found out how the frame was constructed and where the brackets should be fitted. First year with a Chev 402” BB, no success but a steeper and steeper learning curve. We bought a Chev 454” from Anders Lantz and suddenly we could actually beat some our competitors for the first time ever. Best E/T that year was 9.003 and quite close to our target to run an 8 second run. We had by then realized that our gas dragster needed to be replaced and we were planning to build a Pro Comp dragster. Our host in the shop we spent our Tuesdays in, Lee Anders Hasselström convinced us it was much better to go nitro. He said: “if you are chasing sponsor money you can’t say you’re competing in the next fastest class, that wouldn’t convince anyone”. So, we ordered a chassis from famous racecar builders Kjellin Brothers, bought Kent Person’s Chev 454 from his top fuel dragster. First year with that car ended with a 6.97 run and a visit in the fields after the end of the Mantorp strip. The car was a wreck and as the Kjellins were at the track we used the opportunity to order a new car from them before going home that day.
This has been our story all the years Gunnar and I have worked together. Never give up, there is sunshine after the rain and so on. We have always been blessed with good and loyal friends/team members. Janne Carlsson joined us in ’81, Ulf “Hot Dog” Schill and Leif Hamberg after they sold their T/F dragster in ’83, my cousin Bo Söderkvist from day one. Benjamin Wahlström (best chef in the pits) and Sören Isaksson from early ‘90’s till the end in 2001. Thank you all so very much!
Last years we’ve lost some people that has been instrumental in our career: our supplier extra ordinaire, crew chief and very good friend Gary Burgin, “Benji” and “Hot Dog”. All sadly missed.
At my return from the US in February 2020 I was waiting to depart at LAX when I received a mail from Stu Bradbury asking if we could accept an induction to BDRHoF in November that year. I couldn’t believe what I was reading and had to discuss with Gunnar if this was a kind of joke or not. We realized that it wasn’t a joke and of course we accepted the invitation and now, 49 years after the first visit to Santa Pod we are the proud members in this exclusive “club”. Something that we both are extremely proud of. Thank you.
Finally, what Gunnar and I have achieved had never been possible without the support and patience of our respective wives; Pia and Suzanne, allowing us to work with the cars and go racing all these years. Heaps of thanks for everything.
Tony Morris Carburettors sponsor Super Gas.
27th November: Tony Morris and Dave Gibbons are delighted to announce that Tony Morris Carburetors will be the headline sponsor of the 2022 UK Super Gas series!
In addition to the usual Santa Pod Racers Club award, there will be an additional £250.00 for the overall Super Gas champion, and £50.00 awarded to the winner of each round of the championship series.
As the sole UK agent for Tony Morris Carburetors, Dave Gibbons’ TMC with RDR Performance Carburetors operation will also offer a 10% discount on parts and labour on servicing, as well as keen pricing on new carburetors for Super Gas race car requirements – Tim Moore (pictured below right) has already taken advantage of this offer!
Tony Morris Carburetors specialize in performance carbs on the 4150 and 4500 Holley platform, and each carburetor is hand built for its application. Not only do TMC supply traditional four barrel racing carbs, they also supply twin blade carburetors featuring the patented upper jets, which provide superior tunability and offer the advantage of a wider range of flow rating to optimise your combination.
Contact Dave via Facebook messenger on TMC with RDR Performance Carburetors Facebook page, on Instagram at #thecarbfellas or by e-mail on TMC@roughdiamondracing.com with your requirements.
Stilwell's speed plans for 2022.
27th November: Eurodragster.com sponsor Geoff Stilwell has revealed his plans for 2022 with his Lucas Oil 7707 Blown Fuel roadster, also sponsored by Mick’s Paint, and BUA Motorsport, with which he plans to run a new class record of over 300mph.
"My team and I will be displaying the LSR car and my '34 Ford roadster hot rod at the Grand National Roadster Show in Oakland in January, then we will be back at El Mirage in May and November, with visits to Bonneville in August for Speed Week and September/October."
Our good friends at the Torq Talk blog have posted on their Youtube channel a video of the Lucas Oil 7707 at Lake El Mirage two weeks ago, including a fire up and on board footage from Geoff's runs. Well worth reading is an article in Torq Talk about Geoff's Brad Andersen engine.
27th November: Happy Birthday from all of us at Eurodragster.com to former Junior, and currently, VW Sportsman team boss Rachel Wilson. Have a lovely day Rachel.
The organisers of Nitro Revival, Steve and Cindy Gibbs, have had posted on their web site a photo gallery of shots taken by accredited photographers at the event which took place at Irwindale Raceway on 6th-7th November. Don Ewald said "Presenting, in segments, what will go down as possibly the most epic event in nostalgia/historical is challenging to say the least. As media director I issued an unprecedented 32 credential requests, 30 of which showed up cameras in hand (it would have been 32, barring pesky travel restrictions from the UK - editor). With that fact in mind we feel obliged to offer just the beginning of an extensive review of Nitro Revival 4 starting with images submitted to nitrorevival.com as requested and not to Facebook which is one and done."
Santa Pod Raceway announces 2022 schedule.
25th November: Santa Pod Raceway has unveiled a full 2022 calendar of events running from March to November and embracing its usual array of championship drag races, modified car shows, specialist and family events. Public track days (Run What Ya Brung and Drift What Ya Brung) will extend throughout the year from January to December.
In a normal year, 400,000 people pass through Santa Pod’s gates to attend more than 75 events. 2020’s planned programme was halted abruptly by the pandemic’s arrival before a reduced, socially-distanced schedule was completed. 2021’s programme was also significantly truncated early in the season. A full, unrestricted schedule is anticipated in 2022.
Booking for the season will open on Wednesday 1st December.
Calendar highlights include the first and last rounds of the FIA/FIM European Drag Racing Championships, returning after Covid cancellations in 2020 and 2021. The first round – The Main Event – retains its usual late-May weekend, Thursday 26th to Sunday 29th, rather than switching to the Platinum Jubilee bank holiday a week later. The European Finals, 8th-11th September, brings the international racing season to a close.
UK national drag racing championships on two and four wheels begin with the annual Festival of Power over Easter weekend (Friday 15 th to Sunday 17th April) and conclude with the National Finals on the 24th and 25th September. The Motorsport UK British Drag Racing Championship (the Pro Mods) will be contested over six rounds, beginning and ending on those dates.
Historic drag racing takes centre stage over three weekends, with the Nostalgia Nationals (3rd to 5th June) and the Hot Rod Drags (16th to 18th September) book-ending the 11 th annual Dragstalgia summer fiesta, 8th-10th July.
July is also the month for the season’s biggest festival event, Bug Jam (22nd-24th July), the largest of several popular Volkswagen celebrations. Other marques featured with their own dedicated events throughout the year include Vauxhall, BMW and Ford, while enthusiasts for French, Japanese, American and German car cultures are also well served. Another major festival, USC (Ultimate Street Car), takes place over the 5th-7th August weekend.
Dial-In Day, the occasion for interested newcomers to learn about, and try their hand at, entry-level bracket racing, takes place on Saturday 5th March.
The complete calendar of events, including Run and Drift What Ya Brung public track days, can be found at this link.
Booking opens on Wednesday 1st December. Tickets may be booked online at www.santapodtickets.com or by telephoning the Box Office at 01234 782828.
Mike's Thanksgiving message.
25th November: A Happy Thanksgiving to all our U.S. readers. To mark the occasion, regular contributor Mike Collins has sent his latest production in an audio visual format. He writes:
Happy Thanksgiving folks. Being a tad behind schedule with a couple features it was decided to put up pair of pre-publication, authorised bootleg, audio visual mixes which you’ll hopefully find entertaining, especially as they feature the late drag racing legend Dennis Priddle on form and having a ball; being able to put them together has made me feel more than a little thankful for having had such a lengthy and rewarding friendship with a true giant of our sport; his humour providing a wealth of laughter for many that were lucky enough to share time with him over the years.
For me personally, knowing Dennis was a full tilt blast all the way down track from our first meeting w-a-y back in the day, with many, many memorable get-togethers before our last time meeting at the 2018 BDRHoF gala, and that was a hoot and half! As a special Thanksgiving Day treat, we’ve a couple fine examples of PriddlePower, dedicate to his family, fans and friends; neither have been published this way before. From the 2018 Bench Racing session we’ve Dennis on full throttle with his crystal clear description of the “the most phenomenal buzz…”
A stand-alone PDF has wall-to-wall, NitroPower packed images with a few words from yours truly, but Dennis is the super-star, so enjoy! T’other offering’s packed with GroundPoundin NitroPower at my first encounter with FuelCoupeThunder when Dennis unleashed his awesome Avenger on Easter Sunday 1976, up close and personal, with in y’face SuperStickyStereo that fans old and new could enjoy.
Either way, we’re still working hard on a celebration of Dennis’s time spent walking amongst us that’s a full-of-fun tales spread between a pair of stunning smiles; the first from 1966 when his eyes sparkled with the knowledge that his dream of unleashing some NitroPower was far closer than any of us ever knew; including the photographer, my ol’ boss John Bennett, who Eurodragster told me celebrated his 91st birthday a couple days ago, so a belated Happy Birthday to you sir.
And a very Happy Thanksgiving to you all; thing is, folks, this is the most American of all holidays, but being world travellers, either in reality or vicariously through computers and cable networks, all drag racers have myriad reasons to be thankful.
So, be nice to someone, give thanks for all that we’ve been blessed with.
And be warned when NitroWarrior Dennis Priddle's AAFC Avenger begins to sing, don’t forget your ear defenders! That brought a smile to my face, taking me back to memories of famed Dave Stone telling me he’d blown his speaker by cranking up the volume on the original Soul Tracking in 1976!
Have fun folks and, until next time, stay lucky - Mike Collins
Drag Seen 2 special offer.
25th November: Thanks to publisher of Drag Seen 2 Paul Martin, who has let us know that he is making a special offer for the photo book, which we first showed on 18th November and has almost sold out:
"The last eleven copies of Drag-Seen 2 are now listed exclusively for Eurodragster.com readers on eBay 24 hours before the link goes live.
Our long-time supporter and sponsor Bob Roberts gave us this endorsement: "Drag Seen 2 is a welcome reminder of things past. The centre page spread of Oklahoma Willy is worth the cover price on its own. Certainly helps to dispel the winter blues on a frosty morning, better than a SAD lamp I think."
Also as a early Black Friday offer to Eurodragster.com readers, I’ll include a Drag Seen Logo sticker with any purchases of last 11 x copies of Drag Seen 1 available on eBay at this link.
All profits from the production of Drag Seen 2 go to Cancer Research and Paul has promised to let us know the amount raised early next week.
Spitfire Raceway times and gallery.
23rd November: Thanks to Spitfire Raceway promoter Lee Child for sending results from the run what ya brung event held last Saturday at the Cornwall track, and to photographer James Webber for providing a gallery of photos which you can see at our coverage page, supported by John Woolfe Racing.
The run what ya brung, held in damp conditions but still attracting 71 cars, had the incentive of a £500 prize for the quickest time recorded which was won by David Lea in his VW Golf R. The quickest times, with VP Racing Fuels goody bags and fuel jugs going to the winners were:
The 2022 dates for Spitfire Raceway have been published:
23rd November: A very Happy Birthday to Gasser Circus and Outlaw Anglia racer Tom Margesson, and to Pro ET and Nostalgia Superstock racer James Oliver. Have a great day guys.
If you're looking for free, high definition remastered, historic NHRA drag racing footage, streamed 24/7, then go no further than the Sportstribal page. Included in the NHRA channel are many Diamond P productions and races going back to the 1960s.
Warpspeed Racing win at Man Cup Finals.
22nd November: Congratulations to Stuart Crane, Dale Leeks and Andrew Leeks of Warpspeed Racing who, with rider Terry Schweigert and tuner Dan Wagner, won the the Pro Open class at the Man Cup Finals at South Georgia Motorsports Park. Running consistently in the 3.9s at 180+mph, the bike had the legs on its competitors and ran reliably.
Thanks to Dale for providing photos from the event. He said "Well, we did it with a British built Warpspeed Racing motor, and British-built new billet Hurricane head by me and Andy Lock. We went and won the World Finals."
The event which was streamed free on the Youtube channel of MotorMania TV with an on-the-spot video from Jack Korpela available to watch on the CycleDrag Youtube channel.
BDRHoF Gala returns.
22nd November: The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala dinner took place on Saturday at Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge, Surrey and was another star-studded occasion with acceptance speeches that were well considered, humorous and at times emotional.
We thank Julian for supplying a gallery of pictures from the evening which you can see by clicking here or going to our Features Index sponsored by Lucas Oil.
Honorary Chair Lesley Wright commenced the formal part of the evening by reflecting on events since the last Gala dinner in November 2019. "It’s been a tough 2 years for all, however thanks to the amazing efforts by our tracks, I am pleased to say that Drag Racing is alive and kicking!
"The dogged determination of Keith and the staff at Santa Pod Raceway to re-open the track last year, despite all the authorities’ objections, was amazing. Also, the generosity of people and the efforts of volunteers in establishing a great series of events at Melbourne Raceway was outstanding.
"Sadly, we’ve lost a lot of people from the Drag Racing community since our last Gala and their loss is heartfelt. In particular, we miss our members Lawrie Gatehouse, Dennis Priddle and Stuart Bradbury. I always appreciated how hard Stuart worked for the Hall of Fame, but never more so since taking over the reins last year. I’m proud to say that Stuart’s name will be forever associated with the Hall of Fame through the naming of the Junior Awards after him. A fitting tribute to ensure that his legacy will continue."
Compere Tony Thacker continued by announcing the inaugural Stuart Bradbury Junior Drag Racing Awards which were presented by his wife Bev Bradbury. The awards went to the Junior Covid Cup winners of 2020 Liam Holgate (Junior Dragbike) and Luke Fulton (Junior Dragster) alongside 2021 champions Hollie King (Junior Dragbike) and Harry Redshaw (Junior Dragster).
Earlier, Tom Davis of BDRHoF and Eurodragster.com sponsor VP Racing Fuels made presentations to the 2020 and 2021 Junior Drag Racing champions in the drinks reception sponsored by Santa Pod Raceway.
The inductees at the Gala have had to wait patiently for 21 whole months for their moment in the limelight, but were all present and keen to be formally inducted. Each inductee received the Bootsie trophy in memory of the late, great Allan ‘Bootsie’ Herridge, the trophies sponsored by the Santa Pod Racers Club, the Hall of Fame being indebted to Ian Marshall, Philip Evans, Kathy Taylor and the SPRC committee for this continued support.
You can see the full citations in our news update on 10th July 2020. Here are the acceptance speeches for each inductee and their presenters, following the reading of the citations by SPR announcer Colin Theobald:
Jeff Byne: Land Speed Racer and former Pro Stock Bike racer Geoff Stilwell presented the trophy to Jeff, who said: I'm a man of small words all I can say is Thank You to the Hall of Fame team just to put on tonight after what we've been through, and inducting me. It's an honour and a privilege.
Dave Wilson: Former Editor of Eurodragster.com Tog presented Dave Wilson's trophy and said: Dave was very supportive of Eurodragster.com from day one and as the site’s popularity snowballed he always credited me with more foresight than I had actually exercised. In the late 1990s, when I first knew the cheerful chap always laughing and joking with me in his pit, I couldn’t understand his handle so I asked a fellow journalist “Why do they call him Grumpy?”. “Because “You could hear him at the other end of the pits” was too long for a nickname” was the reply.
The citation has told you about the record of Dave and his team but I would like to share one story with you, from the days when I did as much photography as writing. Dave asked for a copy of a particular launch shot of the Top Alcohol Dragster. Now, I’m sure that Julian and Willsheer and all the photographers in the room will agree with me that it doesn’t matter how many requests you get for pictures, it always feels good. I took the print to Grumpy’s pit and he called David to take a look. “Look at that”, he said and I started to preen. “Those butterflies aren’t all the way open”. So I unpreened.
I have to say that it is an honour and a privilege to present you. Hopefully you and your family and team realise just how popular you all were and are with the fans and just how fitting we consider your induction.
Dave said: I would like to thank Tog for making this presentation, he is a man who has contributed an enormous amount to European Drag Racing. For me it's been a long journey. On my table tonight there are people who were with me at the beginning of that journey and remarkably still with me at the end. Rod George got me involved, taught me many things at the beginning, mostly to open my mind and find answers to problems.
It was a very big learning experience. Raymond White was there as crew in the beginning and back again after 20 years, bringing support in from Playstation, and I also got great support from Anthony Cohen from American Car imports who unfortunately can't be here tonight. My first experience of drag racing along with many people was the Drag Fests at Blackbushe. I actually came across Allan and his straight eight Buick at that meeting and little did I imagine that years later I'd be collecting an award with his name on it.
There have been many people who have helped and taken part in this journey and I'm going to name a few. Steve Martyn and Dave Fletcher, helped build the Krypton car after we made a mess of the Stormbringer, Charlie Jarrett and Bob Vaughan who crewed on it for many years – invaluable. Later Ricky Packham, Harry Palmer, Mike Nichols, Fred Willbanks, Andy and Jennifer Bissett, all involved with the Amrican Car Imports car and the FIA Championships.
Andy and Jennifer actually took a whole year off to chase after the first FIA Championship with me and then faithfully followed our truck for many miles and hours and hours on our tour across the USA. They must have got really bored at the sight of the back door of that trailer. Andy of course shared the crew chief duties with my son David during that period and the one thing that has enabled me to complete this journey is the unwavering support of my family. Anne and David have been trucked around Europe to different races from when they were little children David worked on the car from a young age and Anne was always cleaning and polishing and helping Mum. Which brings me to my biggest asset – Linda, team mum. Without any doubt my greatest support without which none of this would have been possible. So I want to share this honour with all of them. I also want to pay tribute to Stu Bradbury for what he started and to the people who carry it on today. Thank you all.
Nick Davies: Fuel Altered racer Ron Hope presented Nick with his trophy and said: For the last thirteen sessions of this meeting, I've been honoured to attend so I feel as if I know each and every one of you and I consider you all to be great friends. You're always welcome in Tennessee, anywhere in the US actually. As was pointed out, Rob and Nick came to the US a few years ago and beat us all up everywhere we went, so I've reluctantly invited them back as we'd like another shot at them. I had the great honour some years ago of inducting Rob into the Hall of Fame and now it is truly an honour to introduce Nick Davies into the Hall of Fame.
Nick said: About thirty years ago I parachuted way into a purple patch in British Drag Racing in the 1990s in Super Gas with the era of such luminaries as Al O'Connor, Brian Pateman, Terry Gibbs, Terry Gransden, Timmy Adam and Ray White. It was a real blessing and cemented my love for the sport. Five years later I gave up work in what some considered to be a fairly promising career, certainly a lucrative one, in the City and made the jump. From a financial perspective it wasn't the wisest move in the world but there is more to life, as the older generation here will probably tell you, than purely financial stuff – it's about family, friends and making memories, and I've made a lot of memories along the way, some of which were the first six, the first five which was this year, first 200mph run, first 250mph – almost, we ran 400kph but not quite 250mph but I'm sure that's coming.
The first Pro Mod championship, the first time into the field at the end of the track, that became pretty dull by the fourth or fifth time. Also with customers, the Ugly Sister's first six, the Apache's first five, all huge.
Then taking the car out to America, it was an amazing experience pulling round to the start line at Bakersfield strapped into your own car, it was an emotional moment and winning the Hot Rod Reunion, it was just the icing on the cake. To cap it all to celebrate it with the people that were there that came out to support us and watch the racing was truly memorable.
It is about friends and people, there's a few people I'd like to thank, firstly all the people at Santa Pod on and off the track who have given me the platform and opportunity to make these memories. Stuart Bradbury, he did a lot of things behind the scenes before we went to the US in 2017, to my great friend Lawrie Gatehouse who backed and helped me unwaveringly through the time and gave me the opportunity to drive a nitro car for the first time, to Geoff Stilwell of BUA Motorsports, thank you for giving us the opportunity to go out to Bonneville, to go out to El Mirage this last weekend, I think the memories have not quite finished in that book yet, to Stewart and US Automotive thanks very much indeed, to Ron for the US Tour which wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for the logistics and support that Ron gave us in 2017 and not just that, I suspect the Bantam would still be sitting in my garage with an alcohol Chevy in it with mothballs and covered in dust.
To my family, Jo and the kids, I couldn't have done it without the patience and support you've given, amazing. And lastly to my racing and business partners - Scott where would we have been without you? You provide the engineering when Rob and I have been lagging and does so much behind the scenes that everything seems to run smoothly at the track largely because of you. And Rob thank you very much, 20 years and counting, I think we've got a few more to go, it hasn't been the easiest times recently but we work towards a common goal. Everyone, thanks very much indeed.
Ian King was presented with his trophy by SPRC director and race secretary Kathy Taylor. Ian said: I'm still kind of embarrassed because a few years ago when Stu Bradbury contacted me and asked if I was willing to be inducted I was embarrassed to say I was racing in the US the same weekend all the time and it was unfortunate I couldn't do it, he said could it be presented from the outside but I really wanted to be here because doing the remote thing doesn't work. I was lucky that two years ago I was able to accept it and I was really looking forward to meeting Stu and it's such a sad and poignant moment for me that Stu isn't here now, but I'd just love to say Bev, thank you for continuing the work that Stu did and to the BDRHoF guys and girls who work hard behind the scenes to make sure that this all works.
When I first started going to Santa Pod at their Run What Ya Brungs and seeing all the guys going up and down in their bikes and cars I thought maybe I'd like to do that sort of thing in the future but I never believed I could actually do it. It's turned out to be the best thing I ever did.
I've made so many lifelong friends, all my guys on the two tables we have, of course my family supports me, my long suffering wife Debbie who's sacrificed so much and she's been the person who's enabled me to do what I want to do so thank you Debbie. My two girls Alex and Georgina, who've grown up in drag racing, I have to say they've turned out to be such wonderful people and part of that is the drag racing family, they've been brought up within this fantastic family of people and learned so much from everyone , how people should be with each other how people should treat each other, nicely and fairly, so that's the main thing I got from drag racing, thank you for making my family what it is now.
Us racers, we're always in the front getting accolades but we can't be here without our team, and I have such a fantastic team behind me that have been with me for so many years now, over 20 years, they've stuck with me through thick and thin actually it's been their input that made me race, my part of this has been very small, because you can't do anything without your team.
It's a genuine thing that I'm the guy whose sitting on the bike and it's all about them, not about me, especially my crew chief for 20 years Michael Beaumont, it was a bit of an accident that he became my crew chief, he was meant to be Jon Morton's crew chief, actually I stole him, I was going to train him but it didn't work out that way. The people behind the scenes are the main people, the backroom staff at Santa Pod, the guys and girls who do the tickets, the entries and everything else, I'm so honoured that Kathy Taylor who's such a wonderful person is the person who is presenting me as she is for me Santa Pod, when I turn up she is the first person I see, Kathy, please don't ever give in.
I want to reflect on absent friends at this point, there's been a number of friends of ours in the motorcycle community who've tragically left us for various reasons. Unfortunately we have family ties between our team and those that have gone.
Can I start with Paul Giddings, some of us used to race with Paul and I'm very sad he's not here with us tonight, he used to come to the Santa Pod Dinner Dance to take the mick out of me, dropping his ash into my cups when I won. We tragically lost Brian Johnson and then Anne which is such a sad story. Then Chris Hampson, I hope no-one ever forgets Chris when I was running against him when he tragically lost his life at SP in one of my early Top Fuel Bike rides. And then more recently Paul Willis who was obviously very connected with our team with Jemma and Julie, he'll never be forgotten, and then more recently Barry Eastman who was a great friend to all of us.
Finally thank you to the BDRHoF for running this fantastic event and remembering all the people that may be forgotten sometimes like myself, I'm very blessed to be remembered in this way and I just hope your work continues and what a great event you put on for us. Thank you everyone.
Pelle Lindelöw and Gunnar Elmqvist: Santa Pod CEO Keith Bartlett presented Pelle and Gunnar with their trophies and said: I've known Pelle for a very long time, I knew of Pelle's exploits before I met Pelle and Gunnar and I really got to know Pelle very well from 1991 when he had the Budweiser car but was also Vice President behind me as President of the European Top Fuel Association. They were a very dedicated team, they became quite infamous and won lots of races and were quite feared.
But what none of you know about Pelle is for all their professionalism they were quite a family unit to the point of they were quite stubborn, most would come to the race track, would put their awning up, would get the car ready and service it. Not P&G! The first thing that happened was out came the barbecue, out came the coffee pots and they had coffee. You could chase them up, you've got to be ready but coffee always came first. Between rounds – coffee. If the engine was blown to pieces – let's have a cup of coffee. It was a Swedish tradition – and that was P&G.
The other thing that none of you know is they were dedicated not just at the race track but in the week. Every single Tuesday from 1981 until they retired, they met at the workshop, they always looked at the car and decided what they think should be done on it. What do you think was the first thing they did when they arrived? They put the coffee on! Sometimes they worked a lot, sometimes they drunk a lot of coffee.
I travelled a lot with Pelle in the ETFA Championship I ran from 1991 to 1996. One round was in the North of Sweden at Pitea and it was called the Midnight Sun Nationals. It doesn't get dark until midnight which is why they called it that. Again P&G Racing turned up, they were very serious - coffee. On Sunday nights when the racing finished the Swedes became Swedes. We had others there, German drivers, British racers, but there were Swedes, Danny Soderberg, Monica, Pelle, Gunnar the whole team. What would happen is that the race would finish at 10 or 11pm and then they would go back to their hotel and the Swedes would come into their own. So when you realise that those guys over there are dedicated serious racers when you see them at 6am on Monday morning laying on the floor of their hotel reception all drunk, you would not call them professional.
However, they are very professional and I'm delighted that Pelle and Gunnar's wives are here. Gunnar's wife Suzanne had quite a serious accident in 1991 and I'm delighted she's been able to come tonight, she's been handicapped ever since and I don't think she minds me saying the Tuesday after the accident, Gunnar was very worried about Susanne but they still made the coffee!
They've been part of drag racing since 1972, they've stepped up and stepped up and supported drag racing, Pelle went on to work for Speedgroup, he's now helping out in nostalgia racing in Sweden, and P&G are thoroughly deserved of this award.
Pelle said: (starts acceptance speech in Swedish) I didn't prepare something to say but next time could you give us some more notice? People say that bumblebees couldn't fly and that's what we say to each other sometimes but in 1972 when we were at Santa Pod for the first time, if anyone had told us that some years later we would be here with all our friends we should have never believed it because we have had so much fun and so many friends in Eurpe also in the States, it's been fantastic.
Gunnar said: I'm the G in P&G Racing. For 20 years Pelle is the guy in the front line – I'm not. I've been in the background. Pelle is the talker, I'm not. Today I must thank you, this is a great moment for me, Pelle and P&G Racing. I'm glad, I'm proud and I'm humbled to be a member of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame. I want to thank the members of the jury for connecting us. In racing we have made a lot of friendships on the strip over the years. It's 20 years since we ended our racing career and yet we are still remembered. Once again, thank you very much.
John Price: Keith Bartlett presented John with his trophy and said: We all know John very well, he's been seen as the voice of Santa Pod and I'm sure one day Colin will also be seen as the voice of Santa Pod.
What a lot of you don't know is how much he promotes drag racing when is was away from the sport. You know John is involved in a lot of Hot Rod shows and airplane shows, throughout all of those shows John is always promoting and pushing Santa Pod which I'm very proud of. He was, and is still, infatuated with the sport of drag racing to the point at which I started to use John as a voice over on all the TV shows we produced.
John is also very good on television, we started on the FIA shows and one round I developed was in Hungary where we did some exhibition races. I said to John why don't we go into Budapest and interview the ordinary public and ask them have you heard of drag racing and do you know there's a big drag racing event on this weekend? And we thought that was a good idea.
We chose a big tourist area and started interviewing with a cameraman there, most said no, we haven't heard about drag racing. John is very professional, he's got to get it right, he wants a script and if he knows what he wants to do, he does it very well. But this was outside his comfort zone, I was flipping backwards and forwards, and these two American girls came up, they answered my question 'It's not as exciting as what we're going to do', I said 'What's that?' and they said 'We're not going to tell you, we're going now' and I said 'no, I'm coming with you' and they jumped on to a tram, I followed and John said 'What's going on?' I said 'I'm going with them', John said 'Where's the car?' I said 'I've got the keys and I'm going with them'. We climbed on the tram and John was quite mortified. But on the other hand that same event John was the ultimate professional with his commentary and interviews.
Here tonight from John's day job in Flint Insurance is David Taylor, one of the co-owners with his brother is here tonight. John would always like to prepare and he would take Thursday and Friday off and want to recover on Monday, so every meeting he would have three days off, this went on for thirty years. I want to thank you David and if John had stayed with us I'm sure that I'll be coming to you and saying 'We've given you three days off!' It's well deserved.
John said: I'm only a little bit excited! It's easier being on that side, I'm quite good at dishing stuff out not quite so clever at receiving it. Thank you for all your kind words guys, I just wanted to check a few things with you (brings out huge list). There's some people of my age here, you may remember lots of things happened when I came to drag racing.
It was 1981, the place was, no matter what people say to me Santa Pod is exactly the same as it was 40 years ago, it isn't, it's nothing like the place that I first went to when there were tufts of grass growing through the track - totally different now. I was interviewed by Roy Phelps at Fibreglass Repairs. Roy was on his milling machine, and he didn't stop. He just turned to me and said 'Son you want to be a commentator?'
I got the job and I really thought I'd made the big time. I was going to be the voice of Santa Pod. When I got there - whole different ball game, this is what led to most of my early commentaries being 'Red car, blue car, going 100mph on the circuit.' Two of my teachers were John and Liz Ledster. Well, Liz was more virulent than John, he was the strong silent type and Liz was the mouthy one, she gave me a hard time for calling the track a circuit.
It would have been natural for everyone there to have got fed up with me and to kick me out. But for some unknown reason, here was a South London boy who knew nothing about drag racing so we'll teach him, and so everyone took me under their wing and I learned. This was the days when I started to say we had a playpen where Bootsie would always try to break the chains on a jet car when it was chained up in the playpen, we had the VIP area - two London Transport buses joined back to back with a sponsor's name on the side (B.F. Goodrich - Editor). Bob had gone across them with a blowtorch welding them, people used to go up them and had soup!
It was just a few of them running Santa Pod, Bob Phelps, Roy Phelps, Eileen, Bootsie and a few others. Do you remember Whack on the gate? You paid him money I remember. When I first went to Santa Pod a bit before 1981 I was DJ at Gary's Picnic. So I turned up there in my Transit with the aircraft seats in it and all the kit in the back and this old man threw us out of the truck, climbed all over it, looked behind the seats went in the back – Bob Phelps.
Quite extraordinary - but that was my introduction to Santa Pod, then I met Roy and got used to him, and then we had Bo and Don, then we got this guy and from then on, it all changed. Life is so much better. The racing – I was explaining the other day to someone who hadn't been to Santa Pod for years, 'It's unbelievable now, we've got Top Fuel Motorcycles running fives', I remember being with Ian in Ultimate Street Bike going all over the country at crazy old airfields. We've got Top Fuel cars running three seconds, your wife Susanne is here, Keith, she's done three second runs. And then we have street cars and Ford Pops running sixes. What a sport we're in, I'm so lucky I'm part of it.
I want to say thank you to my family it's quite true, the families back you up the whole time, without them we'd be lost. You've heard about my mate Dave who I've worked for for thirty years, really it's only about twenty days I've worked for him. Most of all my mate Mike Knowles who's here to night, he's not been to a Hall of Fame thing before but we started DJing together in 1968.
Thanks very much to Stu and Bev, I went out to lunch with them just about two years ago, Stuart very quietly passed me an envelope under the table, I thought, Christ, he's passing me a writ or something. It actually said 'You are invited to join the Hall of Fame'. It was delightful but I'm sorry he's not here. I used to enjoy his company so much, especially when it was raining at the track. In those days we'd all go in the control tower and all the crew would be in there smoking fags and talking about who had the biggest…well you know the story, but I'd like to say thank you to the BDRHoF it was totally unexpected thank you to all the people who I worked with and who I've worked for. I can honestly say 'I've had a great life!' Thank you very much!
Lesley concluded this year’s formalities with thanks to everyone who has made this possible – sponsors US Automotive, Santa Pod Raceway, Santa Pod Racers Club and National Street Rod Association with sponsors Atlantic Fluid Tech, BUA Motorsport, Chair Office, Custom Car, Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, Eurodragster.com, Jeff Bull Performance Engines, 55+Equity Release, Institute of Professional Drivers, IRH Assessors Ltd, Julian Hunt Drag Racing Photography, Paul Whitehouse Art, Shakespeare Relics, Straightliners, VP Racing Fuels, AMH Air Conditioning and Matthew Dowdy Racing.
Lesley also thanked the Directors, Advisers and Selectors of the BDRHoF for all their hard work, in particular Robin Jackson and Bev Bradbury for their guidance and support. Also mentioned were Master of Ceremonies Paul 'Oz' Wright, Jordan Payne, Andy Wheeler and AMP Audio for their help with the event.
The tombola in aid of raising funds for the BDRHOF Benevolent fund raised £1200 and thanks go to Eurodragster.com editor Simon Groves and his wife Ros, assisted by Phil Cottingham and his wife Angie with Graham Beckwith and his wife Carolynne.
Hal Far Christmas Run What Ya Brung.
20th November: The Malta Drag Racing Association has announced that on 11th-12th December a Christmas Run What Ya Brung will be held from 10am Central European Time onwards at Hal Far Raceway.
MDRA chairman Juan Wolf said "Let's get back to the track for the last time this year to score better ETs".
20th November: Birthday wishes today for Santa Pod Raceway co-founder John Bennett (91 years young), noted car painter Jeff Glasser, retired nostalgia funny car and comp bike crewman Denis Bulford, and Top Alcohol Funny Car racer Ulf Leanders, last spotted racing at the recent NHRA Finals at Pomona. Have a great day all from Simon and all at Eurodragster.com.
Good luck to Diane Bowe, wife of Super Street Bike racer Garry Bowe, this afternoon at 15:00 Di will be having her head shaved in support of raising money for breast cancer awareness and you can give by clicking on this Cancer Research UK link.
Well done to Warpspeed Racing's Stuart Crane and Dale Leeks who have supported Canadian racer Terry Schweigert to an eighth mile qualifying time of 3.962/183.84 (1.038 60ft) in the Pro Open class. A dearth of qualifying lists has deprived us of knowing where Terry is in the field, but you can bet he is near the top.
19th November: We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Super Twin Top Gas and ET Bike racer Jonny Young. ET Bike co-ordinator Suze Morris writes:
Johnny raced with us in ET Bike at Festival of Power, Euro Finals Shootout and National Finals this year and was a great addition to the class, finishing the 2021 season in 12th spot.
Please join us in sending our condolences and thoughts to Johnny's family and friends at this heartbreaking time. Sleep Well Johnny... the Heavenly Drag Strip has gained a great competitor. RIP 818.
Inaugural Stuart Bradbury Junior Drag Racing Awards.
19th November: Past achievement is the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame’s cornerstone, yet it has an eye to the present and future too and has long celebrated success in the Junior ranks. This Saturday sees the presentation of the inaugural Stuart Bradbury Junior Drag Racing Awards when the Hall of Fame’s 2021 Gala Awards Dinner takes place at Oatlands Park Hotel in Weybridge, Surrey.
Named in memory of the Hall of Fame’s founding chairman, the late Stu Bradbury, the awards recognise the winning Junior Dragster and Dragbike racers of the past two seasons, who will each receive a personal trophy and a cheque for £100.
Thanks to Covid, national championships were cancelled in 2020. Instead, Santa Pod Raceway conducted its Covid Cup competition. The Hall of Fame’s directors did not want the winning Junior Covid Cup racers to miss out on the celebration, so have invited them and their families to join 2021’s national champions at the Gala.
The 2020 Covid Cup winners, pictured above, are Luke Fulton (Junior Dragster) and Liam Holgate (Junior Dragbike), who has since graduated to the Senior ranks in ET Bike. 2021’s national champions are Harry Redshaw (Junior Dragster) and Hollie King (Junior Dragbike).
The Junior Awards depend upon the support of sponsors who recognise and understand the value that Junior Drag Racers bring to the future of the sport. The Hall of Fame’s directors are grateful to the Santa Pod Racers Club, VP Racing Fuels, Donna Garlits and the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, Philip Evans’ company Atlantic Fluid Tech, Jeff Bull Racing Engines, Matthew Dowdy Racing, Andy Hadfield’s Team Twister and his company AMH Airconditioning, and an eighth, anonymous supporter who have jointly sponsored two corporate tables for the Junior racers and their families.
Dakota Raceway announces 2022 dates.
19th November: Smeatharpe Airfield, Devon, known to the drag racing community as Dakota Raceway, have released their dates for 2022. Comprising five races, the dates for your diary are:
19th November: We've several birthdays to celebrate today. A very Happy Birthday to Pro ET racer Geoff Cowley, Comp Eliminator and FWD racer Simon Crowley, Santa Pod Raceway marshal Bob Day, former Top Fuel and current Gasser Circus racer Tony Pearson who reaches 65, former Super Twin crew chief Vincent Pels and Pro ET racer and former Hot Rod Drag Week competitor Tim Stanbury. We wish you all a great day and many happy returns.
Congratulations to Dániel Donát Lencsés who on his new build Super Street Bike from DME Racing recorded an new PB of 6.883/215.34 pass in qualifying at the Man Cup Finals at South Georgia Motorsports Park yesterday, only his fifth pass on his new bike. A reminder that you can see a free live feed to action from SGMP on Motormania TV from Friday at 10pm GMT.
BDRHoF Benevolent Fund tombola at Gala.
18th November: The BDRHoF Benevolent Fund will be holding a Tombola in the drinks reception for the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala on Saturday. A wide range of prizes will be on offer.
To enter, you need to have bought a ticket for the Gala and attend the drinks reception which will commence at 5:30pm at the Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge. Tickets for the Tombola will be £10 each payable by cash or card.
The prizes will be located on the long tables by the doors of the Terrazza where the reception will be taking place. Just buy a ticket and see if you have a winning number for the prizes, and pick your prize up on the spot!
The BDRHoF Benevolent Fund is grateful to all those who have supplied prizes for the tombola. The star prize is a Paul Whitehouse Gladiator limited edition print. Other prizes include a model kit from the late Kevin Cerasale's collection donated to us by Richard and Jazmine Tunstall, four posters originally offered at the Dragstalgia auction, Peter Walters Race Design (£100 voucher), Hauser Racing (£75 voucher), Santa Pod Raceway - £50 voucher, Custom Car (1 Free subscription) and Funny Car pistons (used) courtesy Tony Betts, 20 envelopes containing 15 assorted historical Hero Cards from European racers (donated by Eurodragster.com) and drag racing DVDs (donated by Eurodragster.com).
Note the vouchers will be non-transferable, if you win a voucher can you give us your name for including on the voucher.
Drag Seen 2 launches this Friday.
18th November: The newly published Drag Seen 2 sees photographers Paul Martin and Eurodragster.com's Julian Hunt collaborate to produce a magazine featuring 58 images taken at nostalgia drag racing events during 2021, plus a few favourites hand picked by Julian from his archives.
Printed on high quality silk paper in an A5 landscape format Drag Seen 2 features smokin’ burnouts, wild wheel stands, track and pit action featuring Gassers, Superstockers, Outlaws, the Wild Bunch and more.
With an introduction written by Niamh Frances Smith (@racewayhussy), the first 100 sold will include a Drag Seen logo sticker designed by official Rat Fink artist and pinstriper extraordinaire Eyeball Mike. It’s the ideal Christmas gift for the drag racing addict in your life. Or buy it for yourself to fill the gap till the 2022 season begins.
All profits will be donated to Cancer Research UK, and if you missed Drag Seen 1 a limited number are currently for sale - details available on paulmartinphotography.com
The photographers are: Julian Hunt - After his first visit to Santa Pod Raceway in 1990 Julian was hooked on Drag Racing and has attended race meetings regularly ever since. Living close to London in the South East of England Julian enjoyed a long career in the Vintage VW and Porsche parts business and then, in 2007, he decided to learn how a camera worked and has never looked back. His award winning work is published on specialist websites and in many magazines as well as his own website julianhunt.net.
Paul Martin Having spent years living by the sea in the South of England and photographing live music and bands both for magazines and venues, a move to the North re-introduced Paul to his teenage passion of hot rods and drag racing. Applying the same techniques he had employed for photographing live music, using film cameras and vintage lenses on digital cameras, he looks to capture some of the atmosphere of the events he photographs as well as documenting those attending and racing. Paul's website is at paulmartinphotography.com.
£500 up for grabs at Spitfire Raceway.
18th November: We announced a month back that Spitfire Raceway, Perranporth, Cornwall has its last event of the year on 20th November, this coming Saturday. Organiser Lee Child has added a bonus of £500 for the quickest car on the quarter mile drag strip, with VP Racing Fuels goodies for runners up.
Drag and drift racers may enter at this link which includes all the required information in an easy-to-complete form. You can buy a spectator admission ticket for £10 (under 16s go free), and, if you have a crash helmet and full driving licence you can then go drifting or Run What You Brung drag racing once registered. £10 buys you one dragstrip run, £20 three runs and £35 unlimited runs. £60 buys you unlimited drifting.
Gates open at 8am, with track action 11am to 3pm. All vehicles have a safety check for drag racing and drifting, and drag strip riders and drivers meeting at race control 10.45am.
Lee reminds us "Please leave the racing and speeding for the race track . Devon and Cornwall police will attending the event and monitoring the local area. Get a speeding ticket for drag strip not from the police." Perranporth Airfield is located at TR5 0XS.
2022 Melbourne Raceway calendar published.
Melbourne Raceway, Straightliners and Duck All promoter Lee Child have announced dates for Melbourne Raceway in 2022. The seven dates in the calendar are:
Each date includes RWYB, Motorcycles & Duck all prep drag race competition Melbourne Raceway. Following planned track improvements in the run-off area, more cars are expected to attend and it's likely there will be a whiff of nitro in the air during 2022. If you wish to add to the appeal for funds which has now raised £10,000 out of the £45,000 needed to complete the next phase of improvements, go to this link on the Straightliners website.
The UK Nostalgia Superstock Association have announced they will be running the final round of their lifestyle championship at the 8th-9th October event.
Terminator Escort clutches for low seven.
18th November: Justin Muscat, known as Justin Ladmu to his many fans in Malta is a drag racer who has faced many mechanical challenges. Last weekend at Hal Far Raceway, he demonstrated he had solved all of them - apart from a pesky clutch which failed just as he was approaching his first six second timeslip at the Enemed Malta Drag Racing Association Finals:
Justin told us "I've been running with a rotary since 2014, I've done my PB in 2017 and been struggling to do a pass since then. I was on a storming pass. But we had issues with the RAM clutch in the last run and it kept us from doing a full 6 sec pass. The clutch failed after 5.5 seconds in the run, it was a PB up to that point and that 6 second pass is still teasing us."
Justin's Terminator Mk1 Escort was featured in a 15 page feature in RPM Magazine in 2018 after a photoshoot at Santa Pod Raceway's Doorslammers that year. He acquired his Mark 1 Escort at the age of 12, and by the time he was 15, he had fitted a Pinto engine in it (de rigeur for the Malta Escort classes) and in 2009, won 14 out of 17 events that he entered. After that he acquired another Escort and in 2013-14 built it for quick strip action, including a Mazda 13B twin rotor engine and a 98mm Garrett turbo that sits in front of the 1100hp engine. The car's chassis work and engineering were all done locally in Malta, by Ladmu Chassis Builders. Tuned by Wilbert Performance.
Justin's PB of 7.188/192.6 was recorded in 2017. The gearbox has been a Jerico 5 speed, popular with "sports compact" doorslammers around the world, and rear axle and brake components are from Strange Engineering in the US.
The car's runs in the sevens have been European records with a rotary engine. So expectations were high when Justin hit the track at the weekend. A 7.366 at a slowing 151.85 was the result, with the clutch giving up the ghost at 1000ft. Thanks to Andrew Green for providing photos of the sad result.
We hope Justin, aged just 30, will be able to repair the damage and come back stronger for his first six. He is supported by his team, including dad Eddie Muscat, Christian 'Burbinu' who does the electrical work on the car,Colum Chadwick from Garage Reg, friends, family, sponsors, Ro designs, Vella Brown Garage, Cumina, LMS Transport, Electech, Joe’s garage, Fanal Restaurant, Goliath coatings, Pro-S, Forch, Lucas Oil and GarageReg.
Photo credits: launch: Alex Buttigieg, workshop: Andrew Green.
18th November: All of us at Eurodragster.com would like to wish Pro Modified racer Annie Wallace a very Happy Birthday for today, have a great day Annie!
Good luck and stay safe to the two teams from Europe who will be competing at the Man Cup Finals motorcycle drag race at South Georgia Motorsports Park 18th-21st November. Warpspeed Racing's Stuart Crane and Dale Leeks will be supporting Canadian racer Terry Schweigert who is riding a bike with a Warpspeed turbo motor and a new billet head combo, built by Warpspeed Racing. Stuart, Dale and Andy Leeks have been working on the new setup with US builder and tuner Dan Wagner; initial results yesterday were impressive with an early shutoff 6.75. From Hungary, Dániel Donát Lencsés is on a new build Super Street Bike from DME Racing, and has recorded an initial 6.99/205mph pass in testing yesterday. Dániel will be bringing this bike back to Europe for 2022 competition. You can see a live feed to action from SGMP on Motormania TV from Friday at 10pm GMT.
16th November: We were very sorry to hear from Robin Read that former Comp Altered racer Ray Cross had passed away last Saturday morning. Robin writes:
"Ray was partnered with brother Brian in the Deadly Messiah Competition Altered. Don Cross has asked me to tell you that everyone is welcome to attend Ray’s funeral . It will be at Nene Valley Crematorium on Wednesday 24th November at 1.00 pm.
"Should you wish to make a donation , it is in aid of the Air Ambulance Service . Please contact A L & G Abbott Funeral Directors.
"Brian and Ray crewed on Little Car (Robin's Daimler powered and nitro fuelled rear engined dragster) between 1992 and 1999 , we had some great times and memorable adventures."
Our deepest condolences go to Ray's family and friends.
Photo of Deadly Messiah courtesy Jerry Cookson.
16th November: Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Tina Hambidge, wife of Comp Bike racer Paul Hambidge. We send our condolences to Paul and Tina’s family and friends at this heartbreaking time.
EDRS 2022 dates announced.
16th November: The 2022 Summit Racing EDRS Series preliminary calendar has been announced by Speedgroup in Sweden. Also posted was a photo of the meeting at which plans were decided.
Lena Perés wrote "Organizers from all Scandinavia is making big plans for 2022 drag racing season and Summit Racing EDRS Series calendar was drawn up last weekend. Speedgroup and Scandinavian organizers had a conference in Stockholm discussing plans for the 2022 season."
Chairman Michael Gullquist said "The meeting is creating a great foundation for an exciting season in 2022".
The Tierp dates of 16-19 June and 11-14 August will no doubt interest teams wishing to compete at an international event, although no announcement has yet been made by FIA or FIM-E as to the structure of their drag racing championship for next year.
Photo credit: Michael Gullqvist/Janne Sjöberg
Malta results, racer quotes.
16th November: Congratulations to the winners at the Enemed Malta Drag Racing Association Finals which concluded on Sunday:
Top Fuel Dragster: Duncan Micallef, unopposed (event best times: 4.056/295.37 over 1000ft)
D 6 Class: Mario Borg (pictured right) , unopposed
Open 6 Class: Mario Borg def. Lewis Vella
CA6 Class: Mark Mallia def. Gary Camilleri
DTA 1 / 6 Class: Alan Muscat, unopposed
D 5 Class: Nathan Bartolo (pictured right) def. Alan Zammit
D 4 Class: Nathan Bartolo def. Patrick Cassar
PS4 Class: Rosello Cassar, unopposed
Extreme 3 Class: George Zarb, unopposed
SM3 Class: James Aquilina def. George Cutajar
Escort Class 3: Ronnie Busuttil def. Martin Scerri
Escort Class 2: Martin Scerri
Extreme 2 Class: Clint Fenech def. Mark Farrugia
Open 2 Class: Clint Fenech def. George Zarb
Open 1 Class: John Martin def. Charlie Camilleri
FWD Outlaw Class: Miguel Montebello, unopposed
FWD Open Class: Marvic Galea def. Miguel Montebello
Junior Dragster Class: Luca Mangion def. Issac Mula Debono
Index class 3: Neil Caruana def. Neil Gauci
Index class 2: Joe Ashton def. Steve Jennerway
Index class 1: Kevin Gauci def. Wayne Scicluna
Bracket 8.00-8.49: Dennis Desira, unopposed
Bracket 9.00-9.49: Charlie Camilleri def. Wayne Muscat
Bracket 9.50-9.99: Wayne Scicluna, unopposed
Bracket 10.00-10.49: Dunstin Mangion def. Malcolm Parnis
Bracket 10.50-10.99: Gordon Cassar def. Nigel Muscat
Bracket 11.00-11.49: Joe Ashton def. Semira Galea
Bracket 11.50-11.99: Dillon Lanzon def. Steve Jennerway
Bracket 12.00-12.49: Mario Scerri def. Terry Gilam
Bracket 12.50-12.99: Reuben Micallef, unopposed
Bracket 13.00-13.49: Neil Gauci, unopposed
Bracket 13.50-13.99: Maria Degiorgio, unopposed
Top Fuel M/Cycle: Franklyn Borg, unopposed
M/Cycle Open Class: Franklyn Borg def. Joseph Grima
Outlaw M/C: Shawn Buttigieg, unopposed
M/Cycle Index 8.5: Steve Bezzina def. Briegel Micallef
M/Cycle Index 9.5 and Bracket M/C 9.50-9.99: Brian Seychell, unopposed
Bracket M/C 8.50-8.99: Briegel Micallef, unopposed
Bracket M/C 8.00-8.49: Chris Vella, unopposed
We obtained some comments from racers who posted to social media and notes on quick runs:
Dennis Desira who won the Bracket 8.00-8.49 class ran a seven 7.926/177.18 in his street legal Cosworth Sierra Sapphire 4x4.
Rosello Cassar (pictured left), the unopposed winner of PS4 class, said "The race weekend is over and it was not one of the best weekends, but we still managed to get some positive feedback. With my race car in the Escort Classes, we had a good start in practice with one full pass hitting 11.02s. In qualifying we were modifying the car setup to solve an issue with the 60ft times but unfortunately after the 3rd run we had an issue in the car and we had to stop.
"On the other hand, I was given the opportunity to drive The Fireball Escort, Bjorn Xuereb's race car. It was the first time for me racing with nitrous, and I must say that I enjoyed it so much. The car has a new setup, and from three passes with no issues we logged 9.4, 9.4 and a 9.25. I would like to say big thanks to Bjorn Xuereb and his Team Sandro Mamo, Luke Mamo, Ludwig Camilleri for their trust in me and all their help during the weekend.
"A big thank you goes to my team Francesco Desira, Marco Magri, Joseph Desira and Stephen Borg that had to work harder as I increased their job now. "A bigger thanks goes to the Engine builder Monty Joseph Bugeja for his dedication and perfection at Powerhouse Garage, and special thanks to Eddie Muscat & his son Justin Muscat at Ladmu Chassis Builder for all their help. Last but not least, a special thanks go to my family especially my wife Priscilla Cassar for all her patience & support, and all the fans locally and abroad for your support."
Jurgen Caruana (Escort Mk5) said: After a long break from driving feels good to be back. After all the issues during the weekend we made only 4 full passes and managed to get the car running low 10.s with a PB 1.6 60 ft to 10.2sec and 138mph. Special thanks to Mark Farrugia my mechanic and tuner, my team Horatius Caruana, Matthew Grech and Timothy Caruana and all the people involved.
In Motorcycle classes, Franklyn Borg (pictured above right) won Top Fuel M/Cycle and M/Cycle Open Class running a new 6.88 PB after going 6.92 193MPH in qualifying. He acknowledged the support of Tony Engineering, Power House Garage, Bilom Service Station and Joseph Caruana Chassis as well as his team.
Shawn Buttigieg ran the Outlaw M/C class and ran a 7.084/204.62 in qualifying on Friday, with a 6.824/209.36 in round two against M Agius.
Steve Bezzina said "I was very happy winning Index class and managed to make new personal best 8.45 with 1:25 60ft. Big thanks go to my great helper Richard Schembri, to my tuner Shawn Buttigieg, my family and friends for all the help and support."
Thanks also to Justin Ladmu (rotary engined Escort) who ran a best-ever 7.366/151mph but suffered a clutch explosion. We will be posting Justin's story in tomorrow's update.
We have posted galleries from both Friday's and Saturday's action at our event coverage page sponsored by John Woolfe Racing.
You can see media from the Enemed Malta Drag Racing finals at the following links:
Dakota Raceway results, gallery.
16th November: Congratulations to the winners at the Dakota Raceway No Prep cash race on Saturday, information courtesy race organiser and promoter Lee Child:
Pro rear wheel drive: Pete Lane (Plymouth Barracuda) def. Nick Barnett (Ford Falcon)
Pro all wheel drive: Nick Martin (AMG Mercedes) def. Sam Jones (Tesla)
Pro front wheel drive: Richard Penfold (Ford Escort) def. James Penfold (Ford Escort)
Thanks to James Webber there is a gallery of photos around the track and in the pits which you can see at our gallery sponsored by John Woolfe Racing.
Stilwell achieves objectives.
16th November: Land speed racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Geoff Stilwell sent us another update from Lake El Mirage following his runs on Sunday in the the 7707 Lucas Oil Landspeed '27 Ford roadster:
"Saturday was quite a difficult day and the organisers decided to close the course at 2pm as it was a bit like a ploughed field. Two cars had spun out. Whilst the organisers worked on the course my team serviced the engine. We looked at the data and found that going 148mph I was only using 17% throttle, almost on tickover!
The fuel consumption was something else, three gallons of methanol in one minute before switching it over to nitro and then 14 gallons of nitro on the run. John Beck and Nick are doing a great job. The supercharger is only on 17% overdrive with minimal boost as a result, and on 69% nitro."
There are some amazing cars here, twin engined machines, blown flatheads in streamliners. Crew chief Nick Davies commented "Fascinating weekend of insight and education at the El Mirage dry lake, the birthplace of the SCTA. The free-thinking innovation behind some of the race cars is extraordinary."
On Sunday Geoff ran two passes of 126.749mph and 174.816mph to obtain his C and D licenses for El Mirage, for which many congratulations to him. He said "Huge thanks first of all to the following people, Lucas Oil, Mick Jenkins at Micks Paint, Tony Thacker, Donny Cummins, John Beck, Nick Davies, Paul Bowman, Paul Rivera, and Nathan. We went to El Mirage to get comfortable with the car and test it out. It was mission accomplished. The 7707 performed flawlessly. I need to also thank everyone at the SCTA for all their help and advice, and keeping us safe. The 7707 team will be back at El Mirage in May 2022."
You can see a video of Geoff's licensing runs taken by land speeed videographer extraordinaire John Wylie by clicking here. John's apposite comment at the end was "That's how you do it!"
Eurodragster.com Christmas Mart.
15th November: Thanks to all contributors to this year's Christmas Mart, for the person in your life who has a love of European drag racing, supporting those who invest their lives into our sport:
If calendars are your choice, Chris Eyre has come up with a whole range. Chris says "For this year I am doing 4 different calendars, Top Fuel, Funny Car, Pro Mod and Nitro Bikes. I am also doing 40x60cm canvas prints which can feature any of my photos. I have many photos not on my site too, so please message on my contact page to discuss your needs. All this can be found at Chris's online shop." The photos below shows all calendar covers and the canvas.
Youngsters and the young at heart love colouring books. Darren West of Power Race Graphics writes: Our RAD Design Lines brand has great colouring book stocking fillers for the drags mad artist and designer! We are excited to announce we have a brand new book coming for Christmas 2021. Our 'Funny Cars' book is the second in the series of design and colouring books featuring some of the most popular funny car body styles in the history of the class - this is a cool gift for the funny car fans! The new book is available now to pre-order and ships from Monday 29th November .. just head over to our website to order your copy!
Our very popular 'Door Slammers' design and colouring book is still available on our website, but there's just a limited number of these left now so move quickly as we won't be reprinting this book before Christmas.
The RAD Design Lines mission continues to inspire young people to get creative, get into design and motorsport graphics and let their imaginations run wild! Shop now for both books at - www.raddesignlines.com.
Longtime Eurodragster.com sponsor and race car builder Robinson Race Cars has a new on-line store selling Anger Management 2.0 t-shirts, depicting Andy's new Pro Mod '69 Camaro, at www.robinsonracecars.com/merch. Many sizes are available.
Our good friends at Zeon video are selling DVDs of previous years at Santa Pod Raceway, with great quality pictures and commentary from the finest in the sport. UK shipping is now free and generous multi buy discounts are available - if you buy 5 or more there is a 30% discount.
Illustrated are the 6 exciting DVDs from the archives of Zeon TV, with some of the best drag racing action from the last 20 years at Shakespeare County Raceway and, of course, Santa Pod. The titles comprise Street Eliminator, Outlaw Anglia, Pro Modified, NFAA Fuel Altereds, Hot Rods at Shakey and Mopar Euronationals.
Helen Todd of Zeon said "We have put some of the old titles back to 2006 on there that we haven't had listed for a few years, on the basis that when they're gone they're gone." So if you want these DVDs the message is to order sooner rather than later. Zeon's web site is at www.quartermilehigh.com.
Eurodragster.com sponsor and Super Pro ET racer Peter Walters has an offer from his Peter Walters Race Design online shop POWERED Co: ‘Tree’ Air Fresheners are the perfect stocking filler! Forget those other trees. This is the only ‘tree’ air freshener you need! Give your daily driver, hot rod, trailer, RV or even race car that fresh lemon scent! Guaranteed to please and makes any enclosed space smell fresh and clean. They're Lemon scented, Easy to hang and Long lasting. Just £3.00 from powered.shop.
Event coverage sponsor John Woolfe Racing has an extensive stock of automotive books focusing on US marques, including several drag racing related titles, all available to buy on its on-line shop. Prices include free shipping. Titles that caught our eye are the Warren “The Professor” Johnson and Don “The Snake” Prudhomme autobiographies.
Craig Dixon of Altered Tees Apparel offers a wide range of clothing for drag racing and hot rod enthusiasts including work from 27 listed artists as well as custom designs. A number of British drag racing teams' apparel is featured which you can see at the race teams page - for any of these you can buy a t-shirt, hoodie, zoodie or vest. Craig said "Quality using the latest technology production is stunning with great ease of washability. In a few days Christmas special money-saving offers will appear on the web site, keep a watch out for these".
Last but definitely not least Santa Pod Raceway has a range of gift cards, gifts and branded championship apparel which you can buy online from the Santa Pod shop.
Perpetual trophy return appeal.
15th November: Thanks to to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for requesting the return of the Perpetual trophies from the current holders.
Ian says "Can current trophy holders please return them to either the SPRC address or to Santa Pod Raceway if that’s easier. The P.O. Box address is Santa Pod Racers Club, P.O. Box 12, Rushden, Northants, NN100ZU or send to Santa Pod Raceway, Airfield Road, Podington, Nr Wellingborough, Northants, NN29 7XA for the attention of Darren Prentice."
Highs and lows at Hal Far.
14th November: The Enemed Malta Drag Racing Association Finals continued on Saturday with final qualifying and eliminations. Several cars ran quick times which we will list in a separate news item. One of the highs was Duncan Micallef in a Top Fuel exhibition run going 4.05/295 on the 1000ft, which you can see at this link, Duncan slowing down and stopping with his chutes out.
Later, Duncan in his role as Malta Motorsport Federation President announced in conjunction with FIA Drag Racing Commission member Keith Bartlett that the drag racing part of the €20 million project to transform Hal-Far into a motorsports complex will come to fruition over the next 12 months.
The plan is to licence the track at next November's MDRA Finals with the addition of Top Fuel, Pro Mod and other classes from the FIA/FIM tour doing exhibition competition, then for Malta to be the opener for the full FIA European Championships in April 2023.
The day was marred only a couple of hours later when Open 6/CA6 class racer Nicholas Ferrugia's parachutes failed to open on his small block Chevy powered Escort Mk1, after a 7.6s/170mph run, and, despite a huge effort to get the car stopped using its brakes, it went through the sand trap and tyre wall, as well as the track's main outer wall. A 14 year old girl who was the other side of the main outer wall was hit by debris from the incident and was hospitalised with injuries, where we understand she is currently recovering. Nick Ferrugia was also taken to hospital for observation and released. We wish all parties involved a speedy recovery from the incident. As it is under police investigation, we will not comment further.
The race continued at 09:00 CET (08:00 GMT) today. You can see a gallery of photos from Andrew Green as well as updated information about the racers' vehicles at our Event Coverage page sponsored by John Woolfe Racing.
Streaming video of today's action is available at Motors MT Facebook page, and Malta Drag Racing Association secretary Konrad D'Anastasi will be posting videos to his Youtube channel after the event. Photographer Alex Buttigieg has posted a gallery from the track today on his Facebook page.
Ain't No Saint wins Hot Wheels Legends Tour.
14th November: Congratulations to the Ain't No Saint team, headed by Lee Johnstone with car constructor Steve Wright, Lee's wife Sue and daughters Eleanor, Sarah and Victoria, for becoming the global winner of the Hot Wheels Legends Tour. As winners, Hot Wheels will be producing a die cast model of the Ain't No Saint Volvo P1800 gasser.
The award presentation show was hosted live at Jay Leno’s Garage, which you can see on Youtube by clicking here, the judges (including 2019 Santa Pod visitor Elena Scherr) paid compliments to both the car and Santa Pod Raceway as its home track. "It's so nicely done he kept the shape so clean with the giant engine in the front, he didn't overdo anything which is so nice, I would just like it to cruise down Sunset Boulevard in it, it's classy."
The video around the construction of the car which was shown in the entertaining presentation.
Lee commented: "I would just like to thank everyone for all the likes, thumbs up, and congratulations that you have posted. It’s rather overwhelming, but a very nice accolade, thank you to all the judges at Hotwheels Legends 2021 it will be a great legacy for my daughters and grandchildren."
Photo credit: Mad Welshman.
Update from 7707.
14th November: Geoff Stilwell made his first Landspeed run since 2018 in the the 7707 Lucas Oil Landspeed '27 Ford roadster, following the team setting up and the car being scrutineered. He told us:
"On the first run, the plan was a shakedown run just so I could get used to the car. However, at 148mph it started to spin the rear tires really hard so I backed out out of it, pulled the chutes and we are now just making sure everything is ok. We are currently servicing the car, and hoping to get out for another run this afternoon.
"They have had to put everything on hold so I doubt we will run again today, so after we have serviced the car we will fire it up ready for either today or Sunday morning."
Geoff was greeted by some well-wishers who visited El Mirage, landspeed legend Al Teague (pictured left) and Irwindale Raceway and nostalgia events announcer Bob Beck (pictured right). Despite outages caused by poor local internet bandwidth, we hope the live streaming coverage from lsrlive.com will continue.
14th November: Happy Birthday today to Barney Campbell, head of Box Lane Video Productions who produces streaming video for Santa Pod Raceway, have a great day Barney!
Photojournalist Steve Moxley has had his report on 2021's Dragstalgia posted at Tim Hailey's US site Eat My Ink, which you can see by clicking here. Steve's report as usual includes superb photography and notes on the racers.
King Racing, Cannon Motorsports announce collaboration.
13th November: Some great news for European Top Fuel Bike racing today with a record holding machine now planned to remain in the UK:
The twelve-time FIM European Championship winning King Racing team and Cannon Motorsports have announced they are to join forces for the 2022 season.
The collaboration between the UK based teams will see Neil Midgley take the seat of the Puma Engineering constructed multiple FIM Championship and world record holding machine in European competition whilst continuing the development of his impressive supercharged DOHC V Twin machine in the ACU British Championship.
Chris Hannam, Team Principal for the Cannon Motorsports team said “this is another exciting evolution of our team activities, as a previous owner and rider of a six second supercharged 4 cylinder Top Fuel Motorcycle I regret I did not spend more time in the class, but with Neil’s investment in this program we have another opportunity to show what we can do and compete at the very pinnacle of motorcycle drag racing alongside the ongoing development of our Nitro Supertwin”.
Ian King, Team Principal of the King Racing team and co-owner of Puma Engineering said “with our current rider Filippos `Fast Fil’ Papafilippou announcing his intention to concentrate on family and business priorities I am delighted that Neil and Chris have decided to take the opportunity to join forces with our team and take advantage of the continuing development program we have for our world class machine. Neil has shown his riding talents over the last decades in Super Street, Funnybike and Nitro Supertwin and we have no doubt that he will be more than able to exploit the continuing developments we have been working on over the last decade and maintain performance at the very top in the world.
For more information contact Ian King or Chris Hannam.
Cosworth doorslammer six second barrier broken.
13th November: The Mk1 Ford Escort driven by Clint Fenech, run by Lixxu Racing and powered by a Cosworth YB, yesterday broke the six second barrier at Hal Far Raceway, confirming its title as the quickest 4cyl Mk1 Escort in the world. The car's previous best was 7.053/193 and the new mark, yet to be backed up was set in qualifying for the Malta Drag Racing Association finals at Hal Far Raceway.
Congratulations to Clint and Lixxu Racing on the 6.998/194.05 run which had incremental times of 1.086 to 60ft, 2.923 to 330ft and 4.479/157.39 to half track. Whilst running the Escort, the team has been building a 2JZ-powered Pro Mod Mustang.
Clint and the team told us about how the record-setting car came about: "The Escort was built originally in 2014, however after two years running mid 8s passes and eventually going into the 7 sec zone, we needed to upgrade a lot of parts for the car to be consistent and reliable. We put the car under the knife in 2017 in our own workshop and with help from Grampun chassis works we reinforced the 3/4 chassis frame.
"We rebuilt the car from scratch, revising the Cosworth YB, fitting a new Garrett G42 turbo along with a Precision PT2000 air to water cooler. Also we converted it to run on methanol fuel. The engine is all designed and built in our own workshop. Electronics-wise, the car is fitted with a Link G4 ECU, all wired in-house and tuned with help from Vince Auto Mechanic.
"Transmission is a Liberty 5 speed, air shifted, and power is transferred through a Ram adjustable clutch. We would like to thank all the team for all the effort and hard work. Also big thanks for our sponsors John's Diesel Service, Vince Auto Mechanic, Grampun Chassis works, Prospeed Parts, Quttu Garage, Fuch Lubricants by RTK Dimech, Balsons Silencers, K&O Detailing, Venom Concepts and AMC Towing."
Many thanks to Andrew Green for sending a gallery of 65 photos from Friday which we have posted on our Event Coverage page for the Enemed Malta Finals sponsored by John Woolfe Racing. Andrew will be sending photos for each day of the event. Today's include several familiar faces from the UK which you can see in the gallery at pic 5, 19, 28, 29, 33, 37, 40, 41 and 60.
13th November: Land Speed Racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Geoff Stilwell arrived at El Mirage lake with the 7707 Lucas Oil Landspeed '27 Ford roadster and team, and he reported that the landscape there is 'surreal':
"We towed up Friday morning, left at 08:10 and arrived at the track at 10:10. The landscape is like being on another world, and it's amazing that it was actually a lake once.
"We plan to get the car through tech and then will fire the engine up two or three times in order to tune it up and check the procedure. On Saturday there will be a 7am start with first runs about half an hour later showing on the live feed. "Weather conditions are looking good, with a slight breeze characteristic of El Mirage and temperatures in the mid seventies. Crew chief Nick Davies will be working with engine builder John Beck and Donny Cummins on running the car. The pits are filling up nicely and we're looking forward to running the car." You can see action from El Mirage in the live streaming coverage from lsrlive.com starting 15:30 GMT on Saturday.
Update 12:00: Geoff said early today "We have the drivers meeting at 7.15am. Then the top ranked 25 vehicles go down the track. While they are doing that we will be warming the motor, so I think we will be running around 09:30 (around 17:30 GMT). We are looking to run between 175 and 190 on the first pass. Then we look at the data. We currently have the blower set to 17% overdrive."
John Beck commented "We got the engine in meow mode, it's only got 69% nitro in it, we got the blower backed up a little bit, so it's a little timid, but it's going to propel you, my friend, and any time if you come back and say "can we put a little more in it", that will be no problem, you know."
NSRA at Classic Motor Show.
13th November: Many thanks to Alan Martin who spent Thursday setting up the NSRA stand at the Classic Car Show at the NEC and will be in attendance every day until Sunday. Alan said "The NSRA stand has a 34 Ford Coupe with a blown Hemi as part of their display and as always, Outlaw Anglia are in attendance. All in all, it looks to be a very promising show, with an eclectic mix of road and race machinery to appeal to any petrolhead."
The NSRA will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022 and special events are planned to celebrate pre-1972 hot rods, street rods and customs, with the two nostalgia drag racing weekends at the Nostalgia Drags 3rd-5th June and Hot Rod Drags 16th-18th September.
Details of the show which continues Saturday 9am - 6.30pm and Sunday 9am - 5.00pm are available at www.necclassicmotorshow.com. Features include the Discovery+ Live Stage, a plethora of marque exhibitors, Old Skool Ford, and Classic American magazine.
Happy 50th Mark Coulsell!
13th November: Thanks to Lynne Coulsell who has sent a 50th Birthday greeting for husband Mark:
Limited Funz Racing want to wish Mark 'Marra Senior' Coulsell a MARRAHOOSIVE Happy 50th Birthday. Looking forward to a fabulous weekend in Wales with our Racing Family. 8.07 @ 161.94mph - not bad for an old man.
Eurodragster.com wishes Mark a splendid birthday, have a great day!
Destination: El Mirage.
11th November: Land Speed Racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Geoff Stilwell has a tight schedule to prepare his 7707 Lucas Oil Landspeed team's '27 Ford roadster for test runs at El Mirage dry lake in Californiaat this weekend's meeting organised by Southern California Timing Association:
"We arrived yesterday and have a day to check everything is right before setting off for the lake tomorrow. Nick Davies and engine builder John Beck will be going through the 494ci Brad Anderson nitro motor and I will have a seat belt fitting. We've so much equipment that we've had to rent a truck to put everything in as we have a lot more parts than we had when we ran at Bonneville in 2018. That includes engine components such as rods, pistons, bearings, valves and spare heads.
"Space will be taken up by the 60 gallons of Lucas oil that we change after each run, but not by nitro as we are not permitted to carry that in our rig and it is transported separately to the lake.
"The team going will be six of us, myself, Nick Davies, Mick Jenkins, Tony Thacker, John Beck, Dony Cummins, Paul Bowman and Nick who I thank in advance for their help and support. There will be other friends at the lake and I am thrilled that legendary fuel tuner Bill Schultz who came over to Europe some years ago, will be joining us for the weekend.
"We will arrive at El Mirage tomorrow after a 70 mile drive, set up and get through tech inspections. El Mirage is different from Bonneville in many ways. We can stay overnight at the lake, unlike Bonneville, and the surface is hardened mud on a dried out lake bed rather than salt. This means we have to seal the car completely otherwise a lot of dust and mud particles can get in the car. Fortunately the weather forecast is good but if a wind gets up or twister arrives, the surface can get blown about.
"The course is shorter than Bonneville, one mile, a timed course of 0.3 miles and just a mile to stop. That's not a lot of distance to slow down a 5000lb car from high speed with chutes and powerful brakes. So our target for our testing this weekend is to set a time, see how the car handles, make sure all the tricks and gadgets on it work, and then see if we can go for a decent run over 200mph.
"As it is a two day event and will be well attended (the entry list shows 123 vehicles - Editor) we want to aim for 4-5 runs over the weekend with the possibility of a sixth if things go well.
"The procedure of starting the car takes four people and that will be what Nick will be looking at although it is different from that for his fuel altered, let alone the Pro Mod. There will be plenty of footage with onboard cameras and we'll get some media up as soon as we can." So good luck and stay safe to the Geoff and his team. In the meantime you can see live streaming coverage from lsrlive.com starting 15:30 GMT on Saturday.
Pictures © Geoff Stilwell: 7707, everything ready to load, Nick with Donny Cummins, special guest Bill Schultz.
Final call for 2021 Dakota.
11th November: Lee Child has announced it's still possible for racers to enter the season-ending race this weekend at Dakota Raceway Southwest, Smeatharpe Airfield - and both racers and spectators must now enter pay on the gate:
Spectators are welcome this Saturday for the drag and drift on 13th November with track action 9am to 4pm. Racers can enter on the day for quarter mile run what ya brung for £60 including a driver's admission ticket. Quarter mile passenger rides will be accepted in RWYB. The 1/8 mile heads up drag race cash day includes run what you brung driver entry and two admission tickets for £120 which should also now be entered on the day. Full details of the competition were announced on 23rd October and classes and other arrangements remain unchanged.
The 1/8 mile drag race for cash competition is Street Outlaw style and Dakota is an excellent place to meet up, with coffee, cars, bikes and bacon butties all on the menu. Spectator admission is £10 each, kids go free.
The entry includes several quick cars, the Ford Escort Mk1 of Paul Margetts, Pontiac GTO of Kevin Headon, and several other full-on doorslammers. Drifting for the weekend is sold out, a drivers meeting for drifting is at 08:30.
The post code for Smeatharpe Airfield is EX14 9RF.
Photos by Kieran and Mike Burrowes
Malta spotter's guide.
11th November: Greetings to all those that have made it to Hal Far Raceway, Malta for the 2021 Finals which runs from today to 14th November. Fans of drag racing at Hal Far, Malta that cannot attend may have at least a day more to wait for streaming video online, however everyone can see what race cars will be in store by downloading our exclusive, and completely unofficial, spotter's guide. We've gathered such information we could find from a trawl of our sources, sorting it both by race number and by vehicle type.
Malta Drag Racing Association secretary Konrad D'Anastasi will be taking videos of practice and qualifying tomorrow and posting them to his Youtube channel. Photographer Alex Buttigieg has posted a gallery from the track today on his Facebook page.
Video producer Christian Bordieri has announced rewards for racers who have entered this weekend and commission him produce videos on their cars for publicity after the event. The cost of Christian's video production is reduced to €100 per entrant and there are a number of other incentives sponsored by MDRA, Hal Far Raceway bar, Visage Sound Ltd and CarXify Malta.
Action starts tomorrow at 10am with dial in runs. Drivers and crew can collect wrist bands at the gate from 8am.
Malta entry list, D5 debuts.
9th November: You can see the current entry list for this weekend's Enemed Malta Drag Race Finals at this link.
Looking at the entry list, there are several observed runs for drivers in new classes. In the Dragster D5 class, populated by turbocharged four and six cylinder engines that often run startlingly quick times, Clifton Abdilla has a new car (pictured left), with the aid of Jonathan Galea, Tony’s Engineering and Grampun Chassis works; Melvin Vella (pictured right) is also debuting, aided by Mark Farrugia. Both have done limited tests at the end of October and hope to be up to speed for their observed runs.
Clifton told us "Our dragster aptly named anonymous is a 247” long dragster chassis originally purchased from the UK and brought down to Malta for assembly. We started off with a 94mm Precision Pro Mod turbo-powered Toyota 2JZ engine which was expertly built by co-owner and tuner Jonathan Galea and all engineering was done by Tony’s Engineering. The engine is mated to an airshifted Liberty 5-speed transmission which drives the wheels through a custom Chrisman differential setup. All of this is orchestrated through Fueltech’s flagship FT600 ECU. The dragster features several custom fabricated pieces which were all crafted by Matthew Camilleri from Grampun Chassis works."
Melvin's dragster has a Mark Williams chassis with a Toyota 3-S GTE 2.0ltr engine with Precision turbo, Fueltech FT600 ECU and Liberty gearbox with air shift. Engineering work was done by Tony's Engineering and the crew chief and tuner is Mark 'Gladiator' Farrugia who helped Melvin with the build.
Thanks to Clifton and Melvin for supply information on their dragsters. With a full 8 car field in prospect the D5 class will provide spectacular action, and good luck and stay safe to all.
Agrinio media, snippets.
9th November: Thanks to officials at Proaction Racing in Greece for posting photos from the 3rd race of the Panhellenic Drag Racing championship at their Facebook page. More photos will be posted at the same link in due course.
Well done to Dimitris Zachos for winning the 9s bracket class in his Seat Leon 2.5ltr turbo, you can see a well produced in-car video by clicking on this Facebook link. Dimitris's time of 9.795/244.89kph was only just short of his PB of 9.699/250.87 set back in May.
We have also heard that Agrinio Raceway announced the 4th race of the Greek Championship on 3-4-5/12 under the auspices of rule-setting body OMAE. This is a positive message about the future of the sport in Greece, along with the FIA safety upgrades we mention below.
Safety in Panhellenic Championship to be addressed further.
9th November: As part of the close cooperation that is taking place between the FIA and OMAE-EPA to upgrade safety in Drag Racing in Greece, the Race Committee of OMAE hosted Frans Steilberg, FIA Technical Delegate for Drag Racing, (pictured right)at the third race of this year's Greek Championship, held in Agrinio on 5-7 November 2021.
During his previous visit at the beginning of September 2021, Frans has presented the possibilities offered by the FIA in order to upgrade the safety standards to the Committee (EPA) of OMAE.
Noting that the area needing improvement in the majority of European countries is the technical inspection of cars as well as complying to current safety standards, Frans made a detailed presentation to members of the OMAE Safety and Drag Racing Committees, concerning the critical parameters that must be checked along with the provision of safety equipment for both cars and drivers as well as the procedures to be followed to ensure compliance with the regulations.
He also pointed out ways in which further training of drivers, engineers and officials as well as the members of the emergency rescue teams, should take place.
Frans made his first visit to the airport of Agrinio in September to review the preparations for this particular facility to host Drag Racing. He noted that the condition of the track and the concrete barriers alongside the track are positive features and to be encouraged throughout European drag racing.
Last weekend Frans attended Agrinio Raceway to observe the 3rd round of the Panhellenic Drag Racing Championship.
Based on Frans's observations which were addressed to the executives of Greek Drag Racing, the OMAE-EPA will adopt a detailed plan to upgrade the safety of each racetrack and every aspect of dragster racing used in the Greek Drag Racing Championship. The main priority of OMAE-EPA is to make the most of the opportunities generously offered by the FIA to upgrade the level of safety in drag racing, as well as in all other forms of car racing.
7th November: Diana, Kirstie, Julian, Kieran and Simon would like to wish retired Eurodragster.com News Editor, Race Reporter and not-yet-retired Photographer Tog a very Happy Birthday for today. Have a great day buddy and many happy returns.
For those following the Haltech World Cup Finals for Import vs Domestic which are taking place at Maryland International Raceway, Budds Creek, US, qualifying sheets and ladders can be seen at the event's Facebook page. The diversity of entries and unpredictability of performance in the cool conditions, despite the track announcer's plea of "Heat in the motors!", makes for intruiging viewing.
Also from over the Pond, you can see media from Nitro Revival at the event's Facebook Group including a number of videos, with apologies to those who had planned to attend but travel arrangements got stymied by the travel restrictions ending tomorrow.
7th November: Thanks to track officials at Agrinio Raceway in Greece for posting ladders following qualifying at the 3rd race of the Greek Drag Racing championship. You can see ladders for classes AT1, BT1 and BT2, index classes 8/9/10/12s, and index class 11.
Pictured is Savvas Petropoulos in his qualifying run yesterday, going 5.8/212kph to the eighth. We plan to publish results and media from the event over the next few days.
Drag Racing Into the 80s.
6th November: Many thanks to photojournalist Mark Gredzinski for updating us on progress on his book Drag Racing Into the 80s, following the publishing of his well received truck book Midnight Movers produced by his publishing company Accurate Dragster Publishing:
"The whole thing is similar to the truck book in that it will have taken around 1000 hours to produce. That’s unpaid hours incidentally (are there any other sort of hours? - Editor).
"I have scanned some 5000 images of which I have earmarked around 300 for the book. The final total will depend on the design. No point in putting lots of postage size pics when many deserve enlargement. Ninety nine percent of the shots have never been seen before. Right now I’m at the individual picture editing stage. This is variable. Some films like Kodachrome slide film have just small dust removal to contend with. Other key shots like one of Tom Hoover, has negative damage (happens on 40 year old film sometimes) so took about 90 minutes of careful work to get up to scratch. I never use Photoshop as I like a naturalistic look with just colour correction etc.
"The envisaged book is 144 pages long with ten chapters. Written work and composition is ongoing. The images cover the period 1980 to 1989. The title of the book is very obvious deliberately to prevent ambiguity. My title of Accurate Dragster Publishing promoted a few sniggers down at the post office since they are unaware of my interest in motorsport/ trucks and not pictures of men dressing up in garish clothes and makeup. Such is the influence of the general media.
"Anyway, chapters include one on Jaguar powered altereds, then there is nitro Funny Cars (natch!) with around 60 shots of those, Pro Comp, Top Fuel though the prism of my time with the Frontline team, the rise of Pro Mod and doorslammers in general, Fuel Atlereds, something on the bikes that were around etc....and many others cars, classes and anecdotes.
"The book does not go into the history of the sport from day one or cover the political angle since that has been covered before. Its basically my take on the sport during that specific era, while highlighting the cars and races that took place. There will be a couple of intriguing shots for everyone to enjoy and lots of Scandinavian cars and our American visitors in print too.
"There’s some juicy pit shots to go with the action stuff and all photos are in colour. Enclosed is a mockup of the cover. Note that this is only a preview and not the final design as such. Its been devised to give a flavour of the contents. Though I confess both I and the printer like it.
"The book is entirely my production and while it will be completed by Christmas from a written point of view, I cannot assure anyone that it will be actually printed by then. This takes time to do right." As soon as we know any more about publication date we will let readers know.
Greek championship at Agrinio.
6th November: The 3rd race of the Greek Drag Racing championship takes place this weekend at Agrinio Raceway, Asiraklion (now improved with concrete barriers installed for the full track length) this weekend. Friday was limited to sign on and scrutineering and qualifying takes place today for all classes with eliminations tomorrow.
Out of the entry list of 67 vehicles, the quickest cars are in Category A, which is subdivided into sub-classes according to power adders, engine size or cylinders. Dimitrios Panitsas runs a VW Golf Mk2 DSG 20vt turbo (above left) and has a PB of 8.403/269.66kph which places him fifth in the European FWD league. Savvas Petropoulos has a Opel Corsa (above right) which ran a best of 8.959/257.87 in 2020. Thomas Stefanakos has a Citroen AX 1600cc that has recorded a best of 9.262/243.90 back in 2017.
Running in Category A and in the index racing classes is Giannis Apergis who has a best of 9.312/203,38 in his Opel Corsa (below left) which he runs in a team with Savvas Petropoulos. One of the quickest in the Open (i.e. unlimited capacity) is Petros Taxopoulos of main sponsors RTMG Performance who has a new Audi RS5 (below right).
Promoters Proaction Racing are highlighting the 11s index class is the most competitive, with 19 diverse entries including Audi, Fiat, Honda, Mazda, Peugeot, Seat, Toyota and VW.
6th November: Today is the 38th anniversary of the passing of British drag racing pioneer and stalwart Allan Herridge whose competitiveness, bravery and engineering skill set a standard for all racers to follow.
We also celebrate ten years of VW Pro racer and announcer Luke Stevenson taking on the chairmanship of the VW Drag Racing Club. Luke does a fantastic job of promoting the sport and will be at Hal Far Raceway Malta next weekend to commentate on the racing, which we hopefully will hear on the live stream. Luke commented "In 3 weeks time we are gonna announce one of the largest prize funds I’ve seen in UK Drag Racing by a club. We are planning the biggest VW/VAG Drag Race ever seen in 2022 with Drag Days, quite simply if you have a Bracket or a Heads Up car you are gonna want to be involved wether you are a club member or not."
Our longtime supporter and sponsor Bob Roberts aka West End Racers has created a Flickr page where you can see a wide variety of drag racing photography from the 2021 National Finals test day all the way back to the 1978 Yesteryear Drags at Orange County International Raceway, surely one of the first drag racing nostalgia events ever held.
Fans of compact racing are recommended to check out the Haltech World Cup Finals which are taking place at Maryland International Raceway, Budds Creek, US and will include wild action from a variety of heads up classes (a subscription is necessary).
5th November: Happy Birthday wishes for today to Top Fuel Bike racer Filippos Papafilippou, Street Eliminator racer Tony Higgs, Wild Bunch racer Danny Jones, Super Street Bike racer Ross Morrison and photographer and VW Pro crew Alice Fairhead. We hope you all have had a great day.
De'ath debuts Super Street Bike.
4th November: Long time Pro Mod and drag bike crewman Dan De'ath has built a new Super Street Bike which he brought out for the first time at Flame & Thunder for three initial passes down the Santa Pod Raceway track.
Dan's drag racing bug first bit after he sat in grandad Roy Cockerill's 'Wolf In Jeep's Clothing' Wild Bunch hot rod as a youngster. He got into motorbikes as a teenager and competed in motocross "without too much serious injury but having a blast over the years". Dan's first step into working around drag racing was with Danny Cockerill in the Pro Mod '57 Chevy he ran between 2005 and 2008 of which Dan says "What an experience , a lot of hard work and great payoffs when it all goes right; highs and lows balance up over time and great times, friendships and memories were made".
After Danny stopped racing in Pro Mod, Dan crewed for Ray White on his quest to the 6’s with Lethal Zephyr. "We had ups and downs literally , but in the end the car gave up the fight and we won the battle running a 6.78@208!"
In 2011 Dan was back crewing for Danny Cockerill in his five year Super Street Bike stint. Danny ran down to 7.3s with a couple of bikes, the second of which was the NLR Hayabusa which is now in the hands of Alex Hope. After Danny sold the bike and retired from racing, Dan crewed for Sam Sykes in Comp Bike. Away from drag racing, Dan has done a bare metal restoration on a Nissan Skyline.
Dan takes up the story on the bike's build:
Basically the bike was bought as a project which was going to be sold, but after a little thought, curiosity got the better of me, after assisting a few bikes I was interested to see what changes felt like to these bikes, and while I had the opportunity of a relatively cheap bike it was the prime time to do so!
The project then became way more than I ever expected when a good selection of parts became available from Alex Hope (who bought and raced Danny’s bike). I purchased the body work from Adam Burns who had bought it from Alex, the turbo kit and clutch was bought from Alex, a donor engine was sourced and a full NLR spec engine was assembled.
To look at the bike would be almost identical to Danny’s bike, but actually the rolling bike was bought from Sweden with a good selection of parts already on it. The body was Danny’s as was the turbo kit, the dash was also bought from Alex which was Danny’s too, besides that, there is nothing else of Danny’s on there.
All the work was completed by myself including all fabrication of front rack including mounting the body , rear subframe and various brackets around the bike.
Throughout the whole process I have had a pretty good idea where I wanted the bike to be after working on these bikes for nearly 10 years on and off finding what people had and didn’t have , what worked and didn’t work I compiled my brain child.
Along the way, I have had a massive amount of guidance and assistance from Garry Bowe, Brad O'Connor, Alex and Mark Hope and Danny as well as various other people whom I’m probably forgetting!
The whole bike took around 15 months to complete.
I am very grateful to have the likes of Garry Bowe, multi time European SSB champion and tuner likewise of Brad O'Connor to help guide me not only through the build but also to assist in teaching me how to ride this absolute animal of a bike!
These bikes are more than capable of well over 600hp on a street legal tyre with no wheelie bars and are truly a handful but with Brad getting the setup spot on for me to make my first passes last weekend the intention was to be safe and steady which it was! Not one wheelie or spin, except for my own fault on pass 1 where the wheel spun, but was easily rectified.
On my 3rd pass ever down the track , I had some issues on the launch and had to back off getting it into second gear , shut off at 1000 foot and still went 10.0/122 even with the throttle being closed for well over 2 seconds of the run! It’s kind of a relief to get the ride over and done with as that marks the end of a long road getting here, now the next long road is looming quickly.
The plan for the bike is to compete amongst Comp Bike if possible with a view to move up to SSB if the numbers work out. SSB has moved on majorly in recent times and having to run low 7.1’s to even qualify will soon be a regular thing!
I’m exceptionally happy with being the NLR air clutch which has been developed and tuned by Brad O’Connor. Without this piece we would have had multiple issues with setup. These ranged from when we dyno’d the bike using the air clutch to going to a cold track late in October. This was never going to be easy yet the bike worked flawlessly without any spin or wheelie issues that weren't caused my myself drifting in the first pass getting out of the groove. This clutch was key to being able to go and do exactly what we wanted and needed, and went a lot faster to 60’ than I could have ever imagined for the first 3 passes.
I would also like to thank every single person that has assisted in the build , assisted in guidance helping me to learn the riding of these animals, the offering of crew duties and people's help has been truly humbling and has blown me away the amount of people offering help.
Just some of the people who have assisted along the way and not limited to would be the whole Bowe family , Brad O'Connor , the whole hope family , Danny Cockerill , Steve ‘Splinter’ Nash , Ashley Parker for Awsome Powder Coating , Darren Scannell for outstanding paintwork as usual, and mostly my family for putting up with the months of weekends and evenings working away in the workshop making this happen.
4th November: We wish a Happy Birthday today to British drag racing pioneer Bob Gleadow, Supercharged Outlaw racer Adam Clayton, Comp Bike racer Chris Neary and former Wild Bunch and drag bike racer Martin Holgate. Have a great day all.
If you have received an e-mail about a post in our Jeff Bull Race Engines supported Swap Meet which resembles a scam, including lines about "paying via the fastest and secure way which is cheque", a "liable shipping agency that will come over to your home to pick up the item" and "an excess fund which will be included in the payment so you can give it to my shippers", then it would be appreciated if such e-mails are forwarded to email@example.com.
Outlaw Anglia season review.
3rd November: Many thanks to Renegade Outlaw Anglia co-ordinator Colin Millar for sending a review of the class's season and looking forward to 2022 with great anticipation:
The 2021 Outlaw Anglia season is at an end, it has made history and gave a lot of people enjoyment from both drivers, crew and fans, every year the class grows from strength to strength with its simple format of heads up racing and only a few simple rules which have been in place for all of its 29 year history.
We were all apprehensive at the early days of the season and very unsure how the calendar would shape up, but in the end we had a full 6 round championship which was probably much better than what we thought at the start of the year.
The calendar ended up with VW Breakout in May, Festival of Power in June and both Dragstalgia and Summer Nationals in July with Green Light Nationals in August and our final event of the year Hot Rod Drags in September.
After some Covid shuffling, we found ourselves running at VW Breakout with not a lot of notice but the guys stepped up and we still managed to field 19 cars, some great racing with confidence being built as a lot of the drivers had been out of the seat for quite a while, but early signs of great potential right across the board whether you were in the 11, 10, 9, 8 or 7 second club with Mick Taylor taking the number 1 spot with myself getting way to close to the wall and lifted to live another day.
The next event was a very quiet Festival of Power Unlocked, well certainly for Outlaw Anglia with only 4 cars entered, but still some great numbers getting run in qualifying with three cars in the sevens and Ben Kennedy (above right) coming up the rear with a good 10 second run, Jedd Guy this time taking the honours with a nice 7.2 run and again myself having to lift as the car wanted to join Jedd in his lane.
After this event there were a number of discussions and a plan put in place to get the more of the class MSA certified to allow a better number of cars to be able to run in the licenced events, with the help of Mark Norton and Clive McCready (thanks very much guys) we managed to get a lot of cars inspected at the Hot Rod Drags and each car was given a list of activities they could undertake during the off season, so fingers crossed in 2022 we will see much better numbers for the MSA events.
The most anticipated event of the year for Outlaw Anglia and many other classes and individuals is the now very famous Dragstalgia with Outlaw Anglia fielding a record breaking 31 cars and the world famous Ginner (below left) coming out to play, about time! Another family wedding for me kept me away, Lynn said come to the wedding or get divorced and go to Dragstalgia, tough call! I tried really hard to organise logistics with a plan in place to have my rig there Friday to run one qualifier Friday night, fly home, do the wedding and head back through the night to get there Sunday morning to run in the eliminations but in the end we couldn’t make it all happen and as it turns out it rained Friday night and no qualifying was achieved, so it would have been all in vain lol!
In the end we had a few casualties with 26 cars qualifying with some great races and some great numbers and it was sign of things to come with Jedd running a 7.01 on the final qualifier, it was great to see Al O’ Connor back out doing what he does best, with Jedd taking the silverware, closely followed by the runner up Mick Taylor. I did manage to watch nearly all of it from a wee castle in Scotland, but did have to get pulled away when they carried out the ceremony!
Unfortunately a bit of a tumble top end for Rob Brindle put him back on the trailer but with a massive push and a new body and lots of help the guys rebuilt the car and reappeared in full race trim for the Hot Rod Drags (above right), great effort and well done boys. Into the semi finals and it was great to see Ben Rushforth up against Jedd Guy and it was a real close race with Mick Taylor in the other semi against Spencer Tidswell who unfortunately was a no show, yet again Jedd take the win with Mick Taylor following up the year.
Two weeks later and still in July we again go into an MSA event for Summer Nationals but again we've dropped back to four cars, not what we want nor what the fans want to see but our plan was well in place to change this for the better, making a change I lifted the silverware but not how I like to win as Jedd was unable to run his car in the final.
August came quick and we had slightly better numbers of a 6 car entry or Greenlight Nationals with some seriously quick numbers with four sevens one eight, unfortunately we didn’t get finished and never got to run a final.
Onto the famous Hot Rod Drags where we are all aware this is the last event of the year where it’s time to turn it up, as what have you got to lose and you’ve got the whole winter to fix it if you do blow it all up, a great 29 car field with Paul Hensher (above left) racing for the first time this season (great to see him back), we also had a new driver Wayne Power running the ex-Barry Crookston car (well done Wayne) (above right). Qualifying was fun and the atmosphere was electric in the Outlaw Anglia pits with what we remember it used to be when things were “normal”, the usual characters kept us entertained and by close of play Saturday we had only one casualty with 28 cars qualified and we managed 6 cars taking part in the cracklefest with Kim Harrison so excited to take her car and be part of the show and at the same time celebrate her and Rob's anniversary. During the day history was made and I'm so made up for Jedd to run the fist ever 6 in OA, I said to him on the second qualifier come on, let's get down there first and put on a show, we certainly did that and also set up the fastest ever side by side Outlaw Anglia run.
I didn’t see anyone all weekend without a smile on their face its was just the best event ever, with some great results with both Ronnie Mercer and Phil Drewitt (above left) both making it into the semi finals on a 32 car ladder, pretty good going for a street car even if I do say so myself (well done lads).
Into the final and I would say it was the best race of my life alongside Jedd, that elusive 6 still awaits my time but upgrades for next season will get it in the bag (you have to believe that!)
A huge thanks to all the drivers crews and supporters without them there is no Outlaw Anglia and a huge shout out to Santa Pod and all the marshals who keep us safe.
Sometimes in life it's your time and this year it was Jedd Guy's time, taking the Outlaw Anglia Championship, taking the SPRC OA championship, setting both the new ET and MPH record for the class, not a bad achievement I have to say.
We're all looking forward to next season with Outlaw Anglia being 30 years young, we still have new cars being built and await final confirmation from Santa Pod on our calendar for 2022, but as soon as we have this you will be able to see this on our web site www.outlawanglia.co.uk as well on our Outlaw Anglia Drag Racing UK Facebook page; look out soon for our 30 year anniversary apparel and other tasty goods which will help Outlaw Anglia funds in helping the class progress. look after yourselves and have a great Christmas and New Years and fingers crossed we will see you soon at the track for lots more fun!
Media from the weekend.
3rd November: Our Kieran has posted to his Mk1Kieran Youtube channel video footage of the Flame & Thunder show from Santa Pod Raceway.
Kieran says: "Flame & Thunder marked the end of the 2021 Drag Racing season here in the UK with many racers putting on a show for a packed out Santa Pod Raceway. We were treated to a great variety of drag cars & bikes, jet cars and even the Slick Tricks Top Fueler made an appearance! Commiserations go to Andy and Team Twister who made contact with the wall early on in the day, I know they'll be back bigger and better than ever before!
"I was also testing out my new camera this event, big improvement in quality over my old one so enjoy the video! How long until Easter?" The video is now shown in 2160p resolution and both the picture and sound are awesome on a suitably large screen with broadband internet.
Also posting media, this time from the Melbourne Raceway Richard Smith has posted a gallery of photos from the Melbourne "Rock Up and Race" event to his Zenfolio site which incidentally has galleries of action going back more than a decade.
The Straightliners Facebook page has a number of photos posted by Paul Fishwick including the sad demise (pictured above) of the head gasket of one of the BBC crew's Volvo estate during filming for a reality TV show All Gassed Up which will be aired on BBC3 in the new year.
3rd November: The picture shown came with the message "I thought it the right time to send a photo showing my car, on it’s way from California to join the Gasser Circus in 2022. More news to follow when it finally lands, which could be around February as it’s heading to Felixstowe."
We can only hope it will be unloaded on time. If you know more, or have a spy picture of your own to send, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3rd November: We've several birthdays to celebrate today. First is former Shakespeare County promoter and Obsession Motorsport head, now Super Gas crew and wife Tina Moore. Then a special birthday for longtime Super Gas racer Bob Molden who reaches 65 today. National Street Car Championship/Outlaw Street racer and lover of corn Ian Walley also celebrates, and from the Junior Dragster ranks, budding Junior Funny Car racer Kai Cooper has his birthday today. Have a great day all from Eurodragster.com.
Dual Fuel Racing's F&T.
1st November: Many thanks to Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET racer Steve Mellors for sending his thoughts on Dual Fuel Racing's Flame & Thunder at Santa Pod Raceway last Saturday with a very brief Sunday before the track was closed due to bad weather:
What a weekend! Well, that was certianly the way to end a season - the mini tornado. A huge huge thankyou to Santa Pod Raceway for smashing this season out of the ball park, the character cars got HUGE attention and we could not have been happier.
Carl got some blinding runs with Kuki the Tesla despite not the best conditions, then darkness fell, the fireworks went off and Hulk MX5 headed for the pairing lanes, into the burnout box we went, lighting up the car, followed by lighting up the tyres and a bit of a sideways launch and the starting beam being triggered by a cable tie under the car. We ran a 16.8.
Dual Fuel Racing will return next year, we will be bringing Hulk MX5 back and we will be out to entertain to the best of our ability. Photos of the car are available from Blackett Photography, why not get a framed photo for that number one fan. Also don't forget to get yourself Dual Fuel and Hulk MX5 merch simply inbox us to order yours today. Check out our sponsors over at Printz4u, the number one place for customised clothing stickers & more, and if you want digital copies of Hulk MX5 to print yourselves at home, contact our team photographer Miss P Photography.
Flame & Thunder racer notes, media.
1st November: Thanks to those who have posted media and write-ups to social media from the Flame & Thunder at Santa Pod Raceway last Saturday:
Our good friend Callum Pudge was busy at work with his camera and posted 215 pictures to an album at Pudgeys Pictures Facebook page. Also posting were Santa Pod's own photographers Dave 'DJ' Jones and Scott Gay whose Flame & Thunder 21 gallery covers all of the diverse action of the event.
Some racers who have posted comments had some good stories to tell:
Modurstang Pro ET racer John Bean, whose Mustang was on nitrous for the first time, posted a picture from Blackett photography and said "I got my PB run on Saturday night, even got flames coming out of the exhaust. 9.333/148 with a soft launch and early gear change, roll on next year, a lot still to come from Shotgun."
There were several Lucas Oil Junior Dragster racers present taking part in the RWYB and putting on match races. Harry Redshaw (wearing the no.1 number as 2021 Champion), Damion Redshaw, Jessica Bishop, Jacqueline Bartlett, Lola-Belle Kent, Mackenzie Love, and Freddie Taylor were joined by Thomas Cook Abbott, and Kai Cooper racing the Junior Funny Car, gaining a perfect 0.0004 RT in the process. Charlotte Cook Abbott took over the wheel from brother and championship runner-up Thomas who wrote "That was an amazing Flame and Thunder for the team. Charlotte drives The Tominator for the first time and smashes it! (Not literally - Editor).
Thomas Cook Abbott got to drive the Lil Hemi Hustler of Mike Couch. "Thank you so much for the opportunity. I ran it through to a 9.92 @ 136. Not bad for my first time, and a couple of moments where I sh*t myself, like just after I hit the throttle! I did make a rookie error by opening my visor when I thought the car was slow enough, to then get showered by fuel." We're sure we'll be seeing Thomas back on track soon in a quick car.
Third in the championship Freddie Taylor in the Outlaw Angria car lost a front wheel on his run in early afternoon however the car appeared undamaged and action resumed in a couple of minutes, but we suspect his team members will be playing "Three Wheels on my Wagon" on loop...
UK Nostalgia Superstock were represented by nine racers. Class organiser Don Scott said "A lovely Superstock showing at Flame and Thunder this year, thanks to all that made the journey and put on such a stunning display of classic US muscle. I'm sure the crowds and the Pod staff were suitably impressed. It was pretty much an all Mopar show in the Superstock pits this year, bar one." For the record, the group included Don, Adrian Portelli, Stuart Kiwi Thompson, Dave Billadeau, Chris Goodale (all in the above photo), also Jake Cawthorne, James Sweeney, John Davison, Guy King and Dan Williams.
FWD racer Sean Prout brought out his Papa Smurf K20 turbo Civic EP for a couple of test passes and on the second had a terminal of 144mph in 11 seconds, much more to come there, and a stunning wrap designed by 4Race Custom . Sean said "Thanks to Gordon Darby, Rich Hockley, and Wendell Brand for pulling a late one and getting the tracking finally sorted on the car."
Fellow FWD racer Brad Morgan brought his 11s 1400cc Renault 5 BABS for its final outing of the year but experienced problems. He said "As expected, the gear box exploded. I managed to make it in to 3rd this time before it completely lost drive. I nursed the car off the line so as to at least try to run it out the back. 2nd gear felt awesome. Then it just felt like I had missed 3rd. Two more attempts at trying to select a gear that wasn’t there was the end of the weekend / season for the car. Over the winter period we will be going to a VW gear box. This should more than cover any amount of power we could ever make with this engine and finally allow us to drive it as hard as we like with out fear of it breaking."
Straight To The Point vacancy.
1st November: Pro Mod racer in waiting Benito Chiarella has announced that a vacancy has arisen at his company:
Here at Straight To The Point Racing another position has become available. We are a small but growing business with currently 5 members of staff.
At Straight To The Point Racing we specialise in V8’s, American and historic race cars. We cover a wide range of services: General race car maintenance and preparation, engine building, gearbox building, chassis building, axle building, bespoke exhaust, intercooler and radiator systems, trackside support, motorsport parts sales, restoration and much more.
Applicants do not need to have all knowledge on everything listed, as some duties can be taught in house, most importantly passion for what we do and everything motorsport related is key.
Main Job Role Duties:
1st November: A very Happy Birthday to former Top Fuel racer and author Elizabeth Rowland, known during her racing career as Liz Burn. Have a great day Liz.
1st November: Webmaster Chris Dossett has announced that his excellent Trakbytes website has just been updated.He says:
"This time we have 30 new or updated entries. Among the names featured in the updates, which span the years 1963 to 1985, are; Allan Herridge, Dennis Priddle, Alf Hagon, Harold Bull, Doug Harler, Alan Blount, Mick Tickner, plus many more. Dave Dibley has supplied a wealth of NDRC information from 1978 and there are 73 new programme scans from the vast collection of Clive Rooms, plus the beginning of a series of posters supplied by Jerry Cookson (see right).
The unofficial Santa Pod strip records list has been updated with a couple of runs that slipped past me during the initial compilation (something I confidently predicted would happen...)
There’s also a request for help on the “Help Us Find..” page from anyone who remembers a Dave Woodhead from Derby, who advertised the Jaguar Altered previously known as “De Judge” for sale in 1978. As always I encourage readers to submit any details or race reports that are missing, or provide corrections for anything contained in the archive that they feel may be wrong."
Flame & Thunder Show gallery, best times.
31st October: Many thanks to Julian for supplying photos for our Flame & Thunder Show gallery which you can see by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. As mentioned in our preview, there was something for everyone and over 90 vehicles came along to make their final Santa Pod Raceway passes in 2021.
You can see complete timing data at ETSlips.co.uk thanks to the Santa Pod Raceway timing crew. Below we list the top quarter mile times of the day by vehicle:
The sole incident of the day occured just after the start of racing when Supercharged Outlaws racer and Eurodragster.com/Twister Racing Perfect ET sponsor Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield drifted across from the right lane and made a hard hit sideways on the left wall at an estimated speed of more than 100mph. You can see a photo sequence of the incident in our gallery starting at this link. Fadster commented: "I am fine apart from a really sore neck and massive headache. Twister isn’t quite so good. The new front axle is trash, both nearside wheels are done, the engine has moved forward about 2 inches and this has damaged the fuel pump. Hard to tell whether the chassis is OK but I hit the wall at + 100mph so it’s likely to have suffered. Haven’t checked the rear axle yet, lots of checking and measuring to do but I’ve got the whole winter to sort it."
Whilst most racers had appeared earlier in the year it was the first (and last) SPR outing of 2021 for a few. Mark Haswell with his 572ci Ford 100e ran a best of 9.663/139. Also making their first runs down the track with new or modified vehicles were Jonathan Hines with his Suzuki Hayabusa which we reported on in our 27th October update, and Ollie Hutchings-Smith whose All Couped Up competition coupe morphed into a dragster for this event and repaid him with a ten second timeslip.
Melbourne Raceway gallery and results.
31st October: 'Rock up and Race' Run What Ya Brung at Melbourne Raceway took place on Saturday, with running limited due to rain and similar issues today. Former Editor Tog made the journey and posted a gallery and the best times from the 44 racers attending which you can see at this link supported by John Woolfe Racing.
Tog said "Thanks to Martyn Greathead of Straightliners for the results. Running hours were limited by heavy rain and then the requirements of the BBC TV crew filming an instalment of the coming BBC3 series All Gassed Up, of which drag racing's own Becky Evans is one presenter."
Pictured is Dave Jordan's Dodge 440ci Dodge pickup which ran 9.84/81.
Fast Fil to sell Gulf Oil bike.
31st October: Top Fuel Bike racer and double European TFB champion Filippos Papafilippou has announced his iconic Gulf Oils sponsored bike, second quickest in the world is for sale and you can read the story at www.cycledrag.com.
Fast Fil has cited family commitments causing him to sell and take a break, with three daughters to get through university over the next 3-4 years. The bike is for sale complete including a spare carbon fibre body and enough parts to build a spare engine. We wish Fil best of luck for the future, thanks for extending the legend of this fantastic machine built by Ian King and his team, and hopefully to see him at the track at some time in the future.
31st October: Happy 70th Birthday today to former Top Fuel racer Pelle Lindelöw who will be travelling to the UK soon for his induction ceremony at the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala on 20th November. Have a great day Pelle from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
Nitro Revival sponsor Geoff Stilwell who will be travelling to the US the moment the travel restrictions lift, kindly sent us video of the latest fire-up of his 7707 Lucas Oil Land Speed roadster which you can see at this link.
Congratulations to Malta Super Street Bike racer Simon Giordmaina who at a test run at Hal Far Raceway yesterday recorded a 7.201/206 pass to join the 200mph club. He said "Looks like the gremlins started to go away! Thanks to all the people who kept supporting and helping out when things did not look good."
Good luck and stay safe to expat Norwegian NHRA Top Alcohol Dragster racer Julie Nataas who has reached the semi final in the Dodge SRT NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (the 1000th NHRA National Event), also to Russian FIA Pro Modified racer and NHRA rookie Dmitry Samorukov who qualified #11 with a 6.251. Thanks to Robin Jackson for pointing out that all four T/AD semi-finalists at Las Vegas today are women. You can follow their progress at Drag Race Central and via live streaming at NHRA.tv (subscription required).
Santa Pod Raceway announce 2022 calendar.
29th October: Santa Pod Raceway have announced their calendar for 2022 which you can see at this link. SPR's web site will be updated shortly with event details which are promised soon, including RWYB dates. We will publish further details as they become available. Tickets will be available on 1st December.
Flame & Thunder Show tomorrow.
29th October: Santa Pod Raceway hosts its last drag racing event of 2021 this weekend with the Flame & Thunder Show on Saturday and Run What Ya Brung on Sunday.
Traditionally this has been a well attended event with strong local support, however you can still buy tickets for this year's event by going to SPR's online ticket site. Tickets are only available online and not at the gate.
Headlining the on-track programme will be the Slick Tricks Top Fuel Dragster supported by Draper Tools, driven by FIA racer Susanne Callin. There will be Drag displays running throughout Saturday featuring cars and bikes from a variety of national Drag Racing classes. Eurodragster.com will be posting a gallery of the action, and we will publish a list of the quickest times. If you're not at the track you will be able to keep up with the action by listening to Nitro FM.
Thrust driven vehicles will be there aplenty. Martin Hill will be piloting the Fireforce 2 Jet Funny Car in its sole outing this year and the Fireforce 5 Jet Dragster will be making rapid passes down the quarter mile. Roger Goring will be running Firestorm, the state of the art Ford Mustang bodied Jet car that is one of only 3 centre drive Jet Funny Cars in the world and the only one outside of the USA. Julian Webb will be driving the Rolls-Royce Viper engined Split Second, and Perry Watkins will be driving the 1958 VW Pickup Oklahoma Willy - The Jet Bus with its Rolls Royce Viper 535 jet engine.
Off track, there will a spectacular firework display that will begin as the Fireforce Jet Car crosses the finish line, stunt displays from Terry Grant and Lee Bowyers, Team Maximum Lock's drift show, monster trucks, Titan The Robot (returning after a multi-year layoff), drift rides, helicopter pleasure rides and live band Boxeddy who will be playing on Saturday night. Add loads of stage and kids activities and there is something for everyone.
On-track action commences at 10am on Saturday with jets timetabled to run at various intervals from 11:05 and Susanne Callin's Top Fuel Dragster at 12:30 and 16:00, all appearances subject to weather and track conditions.
Custom Car features Blackbushe Reunion.
29th October: This month's Custom Car magazine has an article on the Eurodragster.com-sponsored Blackbushe Reunion that took place in July following a series of interviews by John Hunt of Surrey-based drag racing pioneers we published earlier in 2021. Keith Lee penned the article which is accompanied by historic and current photos. We're grateful for this coverage and look forward to the second series of interviews which are in preparation and will be published in the early months of 2022.
Also included in this must-buy issue of Custom Car are race reports from the STP Greenlight Nationals, 33rd NSRA Hot Rod Drags, car shows, hot rod builds and features galore. Custom Car is available at this link in digital or print format (all issues since May 2013 also available). Subscriptions are available at this link for the low annual price of £39 by direct debit, £56 via PayPal or credit/debit card and £78 to North America or Europe via PayPal or credit/debit.
29th October: A very Happy 70th Birthday to Santa Pod Raceway PR and British Drag Racing Hall of Fame director Robin Jackson. Have a great day Robin from all of us at Eurodragster.com and your colleagues at the BDRHoF. We also wish engine builder and Eurodragster.com sponsor Jeff and Belinda Bull of Jeff Bull Race Engines a Happy Anniversary for today.
Melbourne's season finale.
28th October: Eurodragster.com will be at the season ending 'Rock up and Race' Run What Ya Brung at Melbourne Raceway on 30th-31st October with former editor Tog taking pictures, and we will also post links to results.
You can arrive after 6pm on the Friday before racing and camp out. There is a weekend of Run What Ya Brung madness, car entry being just £50 per day and bikes just £40 per day for unlimited runs, free camping, spectators £10 per day (so if you're a camping spectator it's £10 per day-camping free). There's no weekend entertainment, just a final get together as we enter the festive season and Melbourne Raceway closes for a well earned break after an epic 2021 season.
In contrast to earlier events in the season, entry is using cash on the gate and no pre-booking is possible. In other words, just turn up and let's go racing for the last time of the year! All vehicles will have to pass scrutineering and you will need a crash helmet plus appropriate safety equipment. The BBC will be filming this event for a new programme called Speed, more details on this will be published as soon as we receive them.
Although there will be no Duck All Prep competition at the weekend, organiser and Eurodragster.com sponsor Lee Child has posted videos of competitions which took place at Melbourne Raceway on 18th-19th September and 9th-10th October which you can see on his Youtube channel at this link.
Jurby hosting events in 2022.
28th October: Jurby Motodrome opened to drag racing last weekend with the indefatigable Straightliners team operating their timing equipment on the quarter mile (albeit minus staging lights) as local racers took advantage of sunny and dry conditions to make runs at the Isle of Man track's Big Weekender. You can see a Facebook video of 11 minutes of the action on this Facebook video, with commentary by Straightliners chief Trevor Duckworth.
Included in the cars making runs were Hellzapoppin' (Pictured left below) with local racer and car builder Ian Merryweather acting as crew to his son Lee as driver and owner Peter Astell-Burt for a blast down the quarter mile track.
28th October: A huge (in proportion to his age) Happy Birthday to Nostalgia Funny Car racer Tony Betts, have a great day Tony from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
Eurodragster.com will be running its traditional Christmas Gift Mart earlier than usual in order to aid the order and delivery process (you know what we mean). If you have any products you would like to sell to Eurodragster.com readers, please forward details to email@example.com. Previous gift marts have included t-shirts, calendars, mugs, prints, DVDs and even parts for race cars. The publication date for the Christmas Gift Mart will be Monday 15th November.
If you're looking for a slingshot dragster rolling chassis for sale, a great example has been listed on Ebay. Based near Doncaster, it's complete, only missing engine, has only done three runs and was built by Roy Wilding to SFI 2.6A (7.5 second) specs. Full specs are included in the advert and the asking price is £10,000.
Gerda as co-crew chief makes NHRA TF history.
28th October: Thanks to Diane Kolb, PR for Lex Joon Racing for giving us an update on the role of Gerda Joon in husband Lex's NHRA Top Fuel team:
According to published reports, women who succeed in male-dominated careers are often seen negatively. Gerda Joon is an example of a woman who is determined, capable and willing to step into the traditionally male dominated role of co-crew chief on a top fuel dragster. She has already proven her worth by absorbing all the data possible and learning about the complexities involved with setting the right tune-up for various track conditions.
Lex knows it takes a strong team to win races and championships, a strong co-crew chief he found in his wife and long partner Gerda.
“I’m thrilled to announce Gerda Joon as a co-crew chief for Lex Joon Racing. I have worked with Gerda for many years setting records, winning races and a FIA Championship. I have seen her move up from an entry level crew member to one of the few current female co-crew chiefs in NHRA drag-racing. Over the last two years she went out of her way to help me and our part-time crew to climb the ladder building a team that’s ready to be a force when real funding becomes available.
Lex and Gerda made the decision to leave their home and family in the Netherlands to move across the globe to the United States in pursuit of their American Dream. That was in 2013; they have been working as a team ever since to achieve that dream. You won't find Gerda at the nail shop or beauty parlor on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Instead, she'll be at the shop working side by side with Lex as they delve deeper into the mechanics of their top fuel dragster. Lex who has over 30 years of experience as a team owner and driver knows that team chemistry is a key element to be successful. “The most experienced teams don’t always win; you need to find the right group of people that support each other.
"I was doing everything I could to support our program in any way possible, Gerda explains. This certainly wasn't the team role I planned to be in, not ever! I was actually terrified the first few times I had to squirt gasoline into the injectors but with some great support I've overcome that hurdle and am now adapting to my co-crew chief responsibilities. I also feel very blessed to have had teachers like Eric Lane, Lance Larsen and Rob Flynn, and of course my biggest mentor Lex."
Excerpt from start line interview with Joe Castello, NHRA staff announcer, on Sunday, October 17, 2021, at the NHRA Thunder Valley Nationals in Bristol, TN:
Joe Castello: You and Lex are working together to tune the car; that's kind of cool. A couple years ago you were just helping out and now you've taken over some of the tuning roles. What's that been like?
Gerda Joon: Stressful, but also very educated, and I think he is doing a great job because most of the calls come from him. I just am the person who puts in the numbers but it is very cool because I think we are the only husband and wife team out here that are running their own cars on a flustering budget instead of a shoestring budget. We work our butts off during the week, we put every penny we have in it, and we just pray to God, see how it goes and give it everything we have.
"It's great to have the support of the NHRA, our sponsors and our amazing fans. As a woman, I hope that I can inspire others to step outside their comfort zones and pursue roles that will offer them personal and professional pride. I am still learning but the experience is beyond what I ever imagined possible. Being supportive is one thing, stepping up when needed into a role that is as critical as a co-crew chief, well...it's just been crazy!" While funding has continued to be a challenge, Lex and Gerda have budgeted to attend as many races as possible.
"We don't have a trailer full of motors to just throw in there so we need to be smart about our decisions, smart about when we do and don't opt to make a run. One thing you should know by now is that we never quit, and we won't ever quit! My plan is to keep moving forward, to learn more, to listen to others who know more, and to get our car into the winner's circle. We know it will happen, we just have to take lots of steps to get there as a team! Remember “The Tortoise and the Hare fable…we are the tortoise and at the end of the day we will succeed!"
“I know I am in a male dominated role, but I plan to make a positive impact for our team and this sport. Whatever they say about negativity, I hope to turn that impression around…at least so far as being a female co-crew chief is concerned. This sport is all about family and this is an example of how we show our support for one another.”
Lex Joon Racing looks forward to working with returning marketing partners as well as adding new partners for the 2022 NHRA Camping World Series Drag Racing Series. As announced, they have entered the NHRA Gatornationals in Gainesville, FL March 10-13. Additional entries will be announced in the future. #NEVERQUIT
Malta final round looking great.
27th October: The Malta Drag Racing Association web site has been relaunched with a totally different look and more functionality. Track hire can be booked, and photos and videos are included. Once implemented, racers will be able to book tickets for events (currently available at the track entrance), and advertise cars and parts for sale. Take a look at www.maltadragracing.com.
The next run what ya brung meeting is on Sunday 31st October, preceding the Finals on 11th-14th November for which we hear a large group of Brits will be attending, including announcer Luke Stevenson. Payment for entry at the gate is 5 euros on Thursday, and 10 euros a day on weekdays, Saturdays and Sundays, or a combined ticket for 25 euros which covers the whole weekend.
The full entry list will be published in the last few days leading up to the event however the MDRA have highlighted some of the cars attending what will be the biggest drag race in Malta in the last two years.
Malta Motorsport Federation President and 2017 FIA Top Fuel Champion Duncan Micallef will be making exhibition passes in his car. The world's quickest Escort Mk1s will be competing, the quickest 4cyl Mk1 Escort in the world from Lixxu Racing driven by Clint Fenech powered by a Cosworth YB (PB 7.053/193.08), Justin Ladmu and the Terminator rotary Escort Mk1 (PB 7.188/192), and Gary Camilleri's Zoqdi Racing rotary powered Mk1 (PB 7.18/188).
On the bike side there will be the Funny Bikes of Glen Borg (PB 6.538/329,68) and Franklyn Borg (6.908/302,73 PB at 2021's 2nd event) and Super Street Bike will feature Joseph Grima on Simon Giordmaina's SSB.
Many other spectacular race vehicles are expected to fill the 120 available spaces of what should be a great event.
The event will be observed in its entirety directly by FIA members, to issue a report on how to conduct an event at Hal Far.
Plans are in hand for upgrading Hal Far track as part of the redevelopment of the facility into an international motorsports race track as we reported on 28th September. Barriers will be replaced with new ones to comply with FIA regulations, and the MDRA will build a new Tower for equipment to be transferred from the existing one. The pit area will also be extended.
We will post links to media and results for the November event, and watch with interest continued developments in Maltese drag racing.
Laseur to retire.
27th October: We were sorry to learn that 2016 FIM-E Pro Stock Bike champion and more recently Super Twin racer Gert-Jan Lauseur from Almere, Netherlands, has announced his retirement from competitive drag bike riding:
"From 1996 onwards I have constantly engaged in drag racing, from street class, to Super Street. In 2006 I had my first wheelie bar motorcycle, in 2007 I was European champion in Top Gas! I drove throughout Europe from 2009 to 2016 for the FIM Pro Stock championship with the cherry on the cake the European championship in 2016! After that a few more years of riding in Super Twins with the last result in second place in the European championship in 2019! Unfortunately, forced by Corona, nothing has happened in the last two years and this has also made me realise how much time this sport takes me and my two crew member friends.
"In my shop it's only busier and busier, and I have to admit that I've been working with more fun in my shop for the last two years, now the pressure of work that this motorcycle sport requires is gone. It's difficult with a one-man motorcycle business to have to take leave during the busiest part of the season. It is also increasingly difficult for crewman Sander Nijssen to find the time for the sport.
"My thanks also go to my many sponsors that I have had for years, especially the Family Pels van Zodiac, Eurol Oil, Youngerius Amersfoort and Robarcko Almere. Apologies to my mom and dad who are terrified to this day if we went out for another week for a competition.
"If anyone is interested in my Supertwin 196 ci, I'm open to a suitable proposal. I have so many extra parts that you will be able to ride this super reliable Nitro Harley Supertwin for years to come. The frame has been made longer and the exhaust needs to be modified, the seat needs to be changed and the wheelie bar too." You can contact Gert-Jean via his web site. Update 28th October: Gert-Jan's bike has been sold to a racer in Scandinavia.
Weapon for Hines.
27th October: Former ET bike racer Jonathan Hines is making a big step up by buying the ex Knut Möller Super Street Bike and will be testing the machine at this weekend's Flame & Thunder Show. Jonathan said:
"A mate and I left home midnight last Saturday, after 36hours of travelling and collecting the bike later we were back home. We stopped once for fuel, other than that, we didn’t stop at all.
"The bike is a Suzuki Hayabusa with Holley EFI management system, Garret GT35 turbo and a Rock Solid clutch. It has been at best 7.658/186 with more power to be had.
"I’m not sure whether I am going to be going Comp Bike or 8.50 Bike, with a view in the future to have a try at Super Street Bike. It is upto super street spec with full carbon body work.
"I'm looking for sponsors to go alongside my current sponsor Portable Power."
We wish Jonathan all the best for his testing this coming weekend.
TTS Performance bike hits the eights.
27th October: Many thanks to TTS Performance owner Richard Albans for getting in touch. Richard, as we reported yesterday, ran into the eights on a bike he had not been on for four years. "I own TTS Performance, going on 40 years next year. I’m the UK importer for Rotrex Superchargers made in Denmark, very small high revving centrifugal units. I don’t get much time to ride, but last weekend made the effort to get my bike out for the first time in 4 years.
"It’s a forged gen 2 Busa motor running a C38-91 Rotrex, not the biggest but it’s giving me 18pounds of boost and 500hp. As a result of the RWYB track conditions, we used some grip juice to get the traction needed. It was geared pretty high, going through the top end in 5th and my best was 8.8/179 (click on picture for FB video). I’m sure I could run 7’s if I set the bike up for a prepped track, but will have to wait till next year now."
If you want to know more about TTS Performance an Rotrex Superchargers, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, call +44 (0)1327 858212 or check out our web site www.tts-performance.co.uk.
Santa Pod Raceway's October Saturday Night Special.
26th October: Thanks to Callum Pudge for publishing a large gallery from last weekend's Saturday Night Special at Santa Pod Raceway on Facebook which you can see at this link. There were some quick times and here is our list of some of the top times recorded:
Another quick bike not out on track for four years was Richard from TTS Performance Tuning whose white supercharged Hayabusa (pictured above right) is a rolling demonstrator for TTS Performance Tuning's Rotrex centrifugal superchargers which the firm have developed for over 40 years. Richard ran his first eight, 8.82/175 so well done to him.
Audi RS3 racer Roberto Caira (pictured below left) represents Ecotune and came down from his Glasgow base, driving the RS3 450 miles to Santa Pod. He made six passes and running twice in the eights, his first eight, 8.9924/161.91 improving to 8.9556/160.19 under the SPR lights, the quickest RS3 runs ever. Then he drove the car home! Closer to home, Roberto set the track record at Crail earlier in the month by running a 9.250/165.40 on 10th October.
There were Front Wheel Drive racers present running low nines. Skillaturbo UK were well represented, with Helder Pereira running his 'Batmobile' Seat Ibiza (pictured above right) with Alvaro Silva into the 10s on his first day out in his TDI Seat Arosa.
FWD racer Ahmed Jamshaid of Big Man Ting Performance ran his Honda Civic and recorded 9.3173/154.16 coupled with a 157mph PB speed earlier on Saturday evening, with a new block installed at the end of September and run in at the JapShow Finale.
There were others trying out new parts or combinations, Super Pro racer Tom Atkinson tried nitrous for the first time on his Nova Wagon. "Interesting day playing with the gas for the first time, 50hp jets got it down to a email@example.com (its first ever 10) then stepped up to the 100 shot and smashed out a firstname.lastname@example.org backed up by a email@example.com, couldn’t believe it! We left the 150 jets in the box for next year..."
VW Pro racer Richie Webb brought a street legal VW Beetle with turbo, which stood up on its rear wheels twice, and after development looks as if it will be rapid.
As reported on 21st October, Outlaw Street held its final round at this event, and the quickest are listed above. Also running were Owen Forrest in his Nova, Michelle Wallington in her Subaru powered Beetle, Mark Wallington in his rebuilt '65 Falcon Wagon, Dez Brown in his MG Magnette, Pete Lane in his Barracuda and a couple of others.
Michelle Wallington (pictured below left with Mark's Falcon) said "Well that's a wrap on my first full season and wow what a year my 2021 season has been. I started the season running 25s with suspension & clutch issues, but over the season the bugs bugs have been worked through one at a time. I've raced at Santa Pod & Melbourne and totalled 81 runs this year! As of this weekend I finished on a high with yet another PB with my final PB for 2021 of 14.37 & 94.69mph. I can't thank everyone enough who's helped with 'lil blue along the journey this year.
Owen Forrest brought two cars, his usual Chevy Nova II (pictured above right) and an Escort Mk1 driven by Cameron Smith. He said "What does it look like to achieve a goal after a year of trying: In possibly the most enjoyable and emotional end to my season’s drag racing saw the Nova finally pull in a jaw dropping leap into a 9.82 pass at 134mph. The fastest and quickest pass yet, all motor, 99ron pump gas, road legal with a strong headwind. I’d have been overwhelmed with a 9.99 but this was amazing. The Escort broke the diff but still made a personal best of 10.25@128 on the motor alone and 10.11/125 with nitrous.
"Thank you to everyone who has helped along the way or followed the journey through social media. The final and fastest pass had me in tears, the effort put in with me and the team through the season, the immediate response was to naturally share my enjoyment with Dad, I think he would have been jumping up and down with the rest of the team on the start line. What a sport. Thanks to those who have inspired me or helped along the way, you’re probably unaware of how much distraction i’ve needed this year since Dad’s passing, he was my wingman. Special thanks to Adam Smith for trackside crew and all of our team / friends and everyone at work for the relentless withstanding of my obsession."
Images © Pudgeys Pictures.
Wheelie bars for Alex.
26th October: Second Coming Single Cab racer Alex 'Jesus' Leiserach came to the SPR Saturday Night Special last weekend to continue to test his new build Bay Window machine (see news on 23rd August) and pulled a huge wheelie in the process:
"Saturday started with driver error. I have moved the 2 step switch to the other side of the staging brake to cure an issue, but didn't pull it hard enough to actually engage it. This caused two issues, the clutch management wasn't activated, and it didn't sit on the 2 step so didn't build boost. There wasn't enough power on launch to slip the clutch, nor was the clutch management active to assist. A rookie mistake, but I definitely learnt from it. So a huge wheels-up launch and it ran a 1.48 60ft on the back wheels, this is very promising. Upon landing I was very glad of the Racetech 119 seat cushioning me!
"It luckily only did cosmetic damage to the underside, although the landing was hard enough to drop both doors. Back to the pits, we readjusted the doors, gave everything a good check over and bolted on the wheelie bars. Second pass it shook pretty bad off the line but ran a 10.7/130, it had a crap 60ft due to tyre shake and the mph was down as we had it turned down in 3rd and 4th. It's only a RWYB track with a lot of cars with treaded tyres not helping the surface, we had decided to take it very cautiously. Ironically I really don't need the wheelie bars when everything is working, but they are a good safety net.
Third pass a quick bing boop (technical term - Editor) with the laptop and we adjusted a few things to help with the launch. Got all the way to the front of the queue but the starter motor decided it no longer is a starter motor and is now just a smelly paperweight. A few hours of driving around to collect a replacement and by the time we went to bed it had a fresh one.
Our fingers were crossed for Sunday with the weather and the track; the headwind was due to be a lot stronger so that was definitely be against us. Sadly after running around to collect, modify and then fit a suitable starter, the clutch release bearing failed on us Sunday first thing.
Lots learnt and its far better going into winter knowing what needs attention rather than wondering. We will be back stronger and faster, definitely glad I booked both days. Its going to be a long winter till we get to run again, but with the truck showing such promise and a few simple tweaks planned, we are really looking forward to the next season already.
'Racing is Life, Anything before or after is just Waiting.'
Images © Blackett Photography.
26th October: The Outlaw Anglia website has had a makeover with a photo slideshow on the front page and hover over updated car details for current drivers, of which there are 48. The address to go to for comprehensive information on the class is www.outlawanglia.co.uk.
Craig moves up.
25th October: Former triple SPRC Sportsman ET Champion Craig Wright has raced in various cars from low 8sec Dragsters in Super Pro ET to finishing 3rd in his rookie season in Super Comp.
Three seasons ago Craig made a big change by venturing into 9.50 Bike in 2019 with a borrowed bike from Ian Chrichlow. Although his drag racing experience was wholly in cars he got to grips with the 180hp Suzuki Hayabusa Gen1 (Gen 2 bodied) machine quickly and won his second event with it, the 2019 Springspeed Nationals. Having finished runner up in the 2019 points, Craig continued racing the bike during the 2020 Covid Cup and was runner up in that year too. This year a more complete racing programme took place and Craig was the winner at the Festival of Power, achieving runner up position for the third year in a row.
Craig is now about to embark on the next stage of his motorcycle drag racing career. He said "We felt it's time to start a new chapter and face a new challenge, then an offer was put to us. I will be on the Ian Chrichlow 8.50 Turbo'd Hayabusa for 2022 as we step up to the 8.50 class.
"We know this bike is mega and has even ran into the 7s at over 180mph, but is mainly a front running 8.50 bike. Crich won the National Finals this year on its only outing. I've just now got to get used to this 'Boost' thing that everyone's raving about!
"Huge thanks to Crich for coming up with this idea and giving us the chance, the bloke's off his rocker but an absolute' legend. 8.50 Bike is a seriously good class with some stellar riders, and actually looking to be quite a big field next season, so we cannot wait to mix it up with everyone! The team and bike will also have a fresh CW Motorsport look as well. Roll on 2022 Baby!"
Craig thanks Ian and Jay Roe and the Fossil Fuellers Drag Bike Team for sorting everything and giving him this opportunity. He also said he's looking for sponsors.
Spottedmotors into the nines.
25th October: You may have come across the Youtube channel Spottedmotors which is presented by Dale Ackworth and Michael Castle. During the last four years Dale and Michael have posted a number of videos featuring buying, selling, modifying and racing their favourite cars. The channel has developed along the way, with narration added from 2018 and Dale restating his objectives for the channel in 2019.
Many cars have been featured including Michael's Ford Cortina Mk5 featured in the very first video posted, a race at Shakespeare County against a Ford P100. In February 2019, Dale and Michael went to Bill Inghams Speed Shop (co-incidentally located in Billingham), to reveal their dream to convert the Cortina to a full on drag car with a twin turbo 5.3ltr LS6 engine. Its previous 500ci Cadillac engine suffered an engine blow up in October 2020 which provided the trigger for installing the replacement.
A series of videos covered the stripping down and replacing of the engine with the LS6, including rebuilding the valve train. Along the way Dale and Michael crewed for David McCallan and his Chevy C10. They also took the Cortina to John Sleath Race Cars and discovered the car made 750hp on 10psi boost after some tweaks. The videos are presented in a light hearted manner with plenty of onboard footage so the viewer feels almost part of the team.
Fast forward to Santa Pod Raceway at the Saturday Night Special and RWYB held last weekend 23rd-24th October and the car, driven by Michael, ran well from the start. By the end of Sunday the car had made nine runs with a best of 9.645/141.13. With a race number of Pro 86, we hope Michael will be entered in Pro ET in 2022 and that we will be able to follow his and Dale's progress on Spottedmotors.
Street Eliminator Bentley for sale.
25th October: Thanks to Wayne Allman for spotting a For Sale advert for the legendary Street Eliminator Bentley on racecarsdirect.com. The car described as an "incredible piece of engineering, professionally built by Jon Webster at a cost of £300K+" will be sold "fully prepped by Jon Webster Engineering and ready to run".
The car as most drag racing fans know first competed in Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator in 2014 driven by its first owner Steve Neimantas to best times of 7.301 and 208.10, then in 2016 Martin Smith of Extreme Racing bought and raced it until 2018, winning the Main Event that year, following which it has been in storage.
The car is being sold by current owner Academy Motorsport Ltd. Interested parties should contact Matt Nicoll-Jones on 07814705352 with a suitable offer.
Picture credit: Tog.
25th October: We send Happy Birthday greetings for today to Top Fuel racer Urs Erbacher who is 60 years young today, to Super Pro ET racer Joe Kellett, to former crew member for Peter Schöfer's TMD team Gittli Kürten, and to Giles & Hartley crew member Kirsty Giles. Have a great day from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
The Ain't No Saint Volvo P1800 of Lee Johnstone and family are the subject of a Hot Rod Magazine Car Profile article.
Samorukov licenses for NHRA.
23rd October: Adam Flamholc, crew chief for Russian Pro Modified racer Dmitry Samorukov (pictured right with Adam), has announced that Dmitry will be racing at the NHRA Vegas Nationals from 29th-31st October:
"Big news for Russian dragracing! My longtime friend Dmitry Samorukov just got his NHRA license and will run his SMP Racing Camaro at the NHRA Pro Mod final round next weekend!
"Me, Dmitry and the guys from the Russian Drag Racing Championship have worked together for six years now, racing in Russia and in the FIA European championship. NHRA have always been a dream for Dmitry, and now he will become the first Russian to race with NHRA!
Chris Duncan is doing some NHRA safety updates on the Camaro and will meet us in Tulsa, so we can get some testing in before we head out to Las Vegas."
Dmitry was born in 1976 and after coming second in the 24 Hours of Barcelona circuit race in 2012, took to drag racing in 2014, starting with the All Wheel Drive class and in 2015 becoming runner up in the Rear Wheel Drive class Russian championship in 2015. In 2016, Dmitry acquired a Dodge Viper and teamed up with Adam Flamholc who travelled from the US where he now resides to assist him in running it. The result was five Russian Drag Racing Championships in a row in the US class, the top category. He also raced in Finland at the 2016 Nitro Nationals, and at Tierp in the Scandinavian Internationals in Top Doorslammer.
In 2019, Dmitry competed in each round of the FIA European Drag Racing Championship and came 10th in his first full season, achieving best times of 5.846/ 245mph. Whilst the pandemic in 2020 prevented Dmitry from competing internationally in 2020, he scored his fifth RDRC title.
Good luck and stay safe to Dmitry as he prepares for NHRA competition.
Picture of Dmitry and Adam taken at 2019 FIA Main Event.
Hans Olav on the road to recovery.
23rd October: A couple of days ago, Super Twin racer Hans Olav Olstad was released from hospital after a long stay following his accident on 12th September at Gardermoen. He wrote:
"Finally I'm strong enough to sent an update on my situation. Right now I am healing faster then anybody can explain, however there have been massive injuries to my face, chest, shouler and lungs, together with lot of blood in the lung.
"Right after the huge explosion, the rescue team was by my side. The cylinder head hit my chest and face and demolished everything in the way. The rescue team did all what they could to save my life, and succeeded. I will never be able to give them enough credit or thanks for saving my life. A helicopter brought me to the best hospital in Norway, to stabilise my body for a huge operation. I was on the operating table for over eight hours to repair my sternum and put together all different bones in my face. The upper and lower jaw was totally separated from rest of the skull and were just in pieces. I was placed in breathing machines for one week, then the doctor told me there was no more danger to my life.
"My girlfriend Margrethe was by my side every day. She spoke to me, touched me, and the monitoring apparatus registered a reduced heart rate together with lower blod pressure. I was still in a coma although nobody can explain why this occured. Then, after 10 days in a coma, I woke up to my new life. At that time I could not speak and it was hard to communicate. I was mostly blinking with my eyes.
From that moment every small step forward have been a huge step for me. I'm now up and can walk small steps. I can talk again, eat mashed food, and drink by myself.
"Last week they remove all the steel in the mouth, 14 days earlier then planed, and I was able to swallow and talk properly without any pain.
Right now I have a overhwhelming desire to give the biggest credit to all my friends and helpers for all their warm words, and offers of all kinds of help. One of the biggest surprises was seeing a kid putting a sticker on his go cart that said "get well Hans Olav".
About the bike, almost everything is damaged, the frame is damaged, the complete engine with compressor damaged. The data logger and screen are damaged, mostly all the cables are damaged. It's impossible to say anything about the future of this bike. It needs years to put it back to a drivable condition. One thing is the cost, the other thing is all the parts neded.
But I will be at the track next year, mostly to help friends and their teams. Thank you all.
Picture taken at 2016 FIA Main Event.
Dakota's final cash day of 2021.
23rd October: The final cash race day of 2021 at Dakota Raceway Southwest, Smeatharpe, Devon on Saturday 13th November has been announced by promoter and Eurodragster.com sponsor Lee Child:
"This is a great day out for any petrolhead, all are vehicles are welcome. There is a 1/4 mile drag strip for Run What Ya Brung where you can grudge race your friend. There is an 1/8th mile drag race for cash competition, Street Outlaw style. It's an excellent place to meet up, with coffee, cars, bikes and bacon butties.
"The 1/8th mile drag race competition will be run as duck-all prep, with 1/4 mile run what you brung and passenger rides as well. To enter, go to this link.
"In the no-time 1/8 mile drag race there is a chance to win £400 per category, first across the line wins. All categories will have the 16 car pairings decided from a out the hat selection until the final two race for the money. The categories of competition are:
Pro AWD: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street AWD: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Rear Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Front Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Front Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Based on a 16 car field, the winner gets £400 in each category. In the event of numbers in each category not being fulfilled, there will be a reduced prize fund, for example in a 4 car category £150 and 8 car category £200. In event of the category exceeding 16 cars, the prize will go up from £400. However Lee is looking for sponsor input to increase the prize funds "so be aware things are subject to change".
Lee has been keeping score and the leader in points is Pete Lane (Plymouth Barracuda - picture by Jerry Cookson) who has an almost 100% win record and the most wins outright in 2021 at Dakota. He is 50 points ahead of Graham Butler (rat rod) who is in turn 10 points ahead of Dave Mahoney (Chevy Camaro) and Audrius Bagdonavicius (Audi S2).
Entry fees: Entry to the 1/8 mile heads up drag race cash day with 1/4 mile test and tune is now open costing £100, including one crew ticket. Run What Ya Brung racers can enter for £55. Drifting is £75, or £45 in addition to other entry. Racers should enter online as there is pre entry only, no entry on the day.
If you get eliminated from the 1/8 mile no time drag race, you then can do timed 1/4 mile test runs at no extra charge. Passengers have a £35 additional charge, and the entry cost on the gate for spectators is £10 per person kids go free.
The Dakota drift team add: "For anyone that hasn't been to one of our events before we have a dedicated beginners' area away from the spectators as well as the main track which is fast, flows and still good for tandem drifting. Seat time is really good too. One of our tracks strong points is the space and freedom to practice higher speed entries at the top corner."
Click to enter at this link. The post code for Smeatharpe Airfield is EX14 9RF.
23rd October: We wish a Happy 60th Birthday today to Pro ET sabbatical-taker Paul Baynton and to our namesake, hot rod builder Simon Groves, also Happy Birthday to former Shakespeare County Raceway clerk of the course Osmond Maguire. Have a great day guys.
For those enjoying coverage of the Calfornia Hot Rod Reunion, the webcast of today's racing is at this link. You can also see the results of yesterday's qualifying in Nostalgia Funny Car and Top Fuel by going to Competition Plus.
Your editor was kindly invited by Dave Turner of the must-see Facebook Group UK & European drag racing photos to select five pictures to be voted on for this month's header poll. You can see, and vote on, the selection at this link. Thanks for the opportunity Dave.
Outlaw Street finale this weekend.
21st October: At this weekend's Run What Ya Brung and Saturday Night Special at Santa Pod Raceway (racing on Saturday planned to run to 8pm), the Outlaw Street series has its sixth and final round. The well-established series for street legal cars reached over 100 members in 2021 and held all its rounds at SPR.
Looking back at the rounds held this year, the delayed first round was at VW Breakout on 28th-30th May, and was followed by round 2 at Melbourne Raceway on the weekend of 19th-20th June. Round 3 was at the Mopar Euronationals on 30th July-1st August, however round 4 was split between 15th August (Das Auto Show), 3rd September (VW Action/Doorslammers) and 9th October (GTi Festival) due to the limited running possible at those events (points scored on the first date attended count). Round 5 was held at the NSRA Hot Rod Drags on 17th-19th September, with only pre-1973 cars being eligible to score points.
The points system is built on a combination of 3 factors, the quickest ET on the day, a racer's personal improvement from the last race meeting and attendance. This means that members don’t have to run the fastest car to have a chance of winning a trophy across the season, as proven by the top 3 winners on many occasions over the past 11 years of Outlaw Street. Points from four of six rounds in the 2021 series count towards a racer's final score and decides the series winners, and the first round a racer attends is their ‘dial in’ round scoring zero points apart from 25 attendance points.
The six cars that have scored points in four rounds so far are Brian Nixon (Anglia 105e) (pictured above left), Dave Mahoney (Chevy Camaro) (pictured above right), Owen Forrest (Chevy Nova), Pete Lane (Plymouth Barracuda), Michelle Wallington (Beetle) and Nina Coombes (Lexus). Three other racers who are in with a chance of a trophy, having scored in three rounds are Sally Woolner (Chevy Camaro), Rob Leyman (Chevy C10 pickup), and George Ralph (Corvette C3).
Mark Wallington is the series organiser, using the Outlaw Street Facebook page being the main means of member communication and posting of media. You can see the latest Outlaw Street points at this link, or via our points standings page.
The series' 2021 Prize Night will be held at the Crown Lodge Hotel, Outwell, Wisbech on 13th-14th November.
Old School Stockers' Rule repeat champion.
21st October: Old School Stockers, the group of small (8") tyre Nostalgia Pro Stock Bike racers, yesterday announced that Claire Rule (pictured right) is the 2021 Champion, winning the title for the second year in a row. Congratulations to Claire who has been riding these bikes since 1988, the last year of small tyre bikes. Claire engineered, machined and built her latest bike, based on a 1985 GSX1100EFE, in 2016-17 essentially as a copy of her first Pro Stock bike with some minor updates to make it suitable for modern track conditions. Aside from Old School Stockers, Claire's main business is conversions of Mazda MX5s, at her firm Crapengineering.
The championship was split between Melbourne Raceway and Santa Pod Raceway, with the first round at Melbourne on 22nd May, the second at the Retro Show on 21st June, then Dragstalgia on 9th-11th July. The group returned to Melbourne Raceway on 7th-8th August and its season finale was at the Straightliners event on 17th October. Riders in the series thanked Santa Pod Raceway and Melbourne Raceway for hosting rounds of racing.
Old School Stockers was adopted as the title for the series to correspond to their Facebook Group which is run by championship organiser Tyne Blight with assistance from Dan Blight who calculates championship points. The class's Facebook Group keeps an eye on the other nostalgia Pro Stock bikes running in Europe (currently a couple at Kjula Dragway) and also includes a copy of the 1985 ACU rules under 'Announcements'. The Group also contains some historic photos and memories from those who raced in the class back in the day.
21st October: Drag racing historian Nick Pettitt has uploaded to his Youtube page an hour's footage from round 4 of the 2001 Super Series at Avon Park Raceway which were shot by the late John Hutchinson. The video includes a fair proportion of pitside footage from which team members of yesteryear may be identified.
For those wishing to watch the NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion, which takes place this weekend, a stream will be on the Youtube channel DragRacer.tv from 22nd-24th October.
The entertaining series of video interviews filmed by Cindy Gibbs this week features Nitro Revival organiser Steve Gibbs interviewing Bill Schultz, who worked with Alan Jackson and Micke Kågered's TF teams in Europe, and 1971 NHRA Top Fuel Champion Gerry Glenn. You can see the video, on the Nitro Revival Group FB page, by clicking here.
20th October: We were sadddened to hear of the passing of South African drag racing pioneer and AA/FD racer at Santa Pod in their 1971 International meeting Arthur Christy.
Arthur had a lifelong love of cars and drag racing. As well as creating South Africa's first drag strip, Rainbow Drag Strip, he built cars, the best known in the UK being his Hawaiian III which he transported over 5000 miles to race at Santa Pod. Despite it being a half century since his landmark visit to the UK, Arthur closely followed UK drag racing and was the subject of an interview feature we posted in 2016, and later in HOFtalk 11. In return, he kept in close touch with his UK friends and admirers. Arthur's nephew Wavell Vere wrote:
"For those that knew him, know that he was a mountain of a man, not only physically but also in character and had a huge heart.
"In his earlier years he was the South African drag racing champion, later he became one of the most well known engineers of his time, selling his machinery and innovations around the globe.
"He was known to many as friend, but to me he was my uncle Arth, a man who was a massive influence during my younger years growing up. Time spent with him was either around cars, one of his passions, shooting, hunting or running around the workshop and always laughing.
"I am sure it will be no surprise to many that he passed over listening to Frank Sinatra, music that everyone I am sure remembers blaring out of the pub at his house.
"Our thoughts are with his daughter Cat Christy and family, at this time." We add our deepest condolences to Arthur's family and friends.
Picture credits: Cat Christy, Roger Phillips.
Dal Denton remembered.
20th October: Many thanks to former Top Alcohol crew member and colour commentator Dave Alexander who has written in with his memories of Dal Denton.
"I was really sorry to read the report on the death of Dal Denton. He was a genuinely nice guy who would help anyone. I think he first appeared in Europe in the late 80s.
"Many years ago, when I was crewing for Steve Read (87 or 88 I think) we were racing at Mantorp Park and blew the engine in qualifying; dropped a rod and holed the block, it was toast. Lots of the other teams lent us parts, I remember that one of Peter Lantz's crew made a long round trip to fetch a block from their home workshop. It was late at night and we had a pile of assorted parts and an all-nighter in front us to build something that would race the next day.
"Dal Denton was over as a 'hired gun' tuning for another team, Urs Erbacher I think, but when he had finished working on the car he was paid to tune he appeared in our pit and offered to help. He picked up the camshaft, looked at the lobes and the serial number then picked out the best combination from the parts we had and we set to work. He could have just had a beer and gone to bed but no. We had a problem and he pitched in without being asked or asking for anything in return. It wasn't just him, many other people helped us out with their time and that's one of the great things about drag racing, teams do that. "If I remember correctly, we went out in the first round, then the rebuilt engine was installed in the car of somebody else who had a problem with theirs for the semi-final. It really was a 'community engine' that weekend.
"My condolences to his family and many friends."
Picture credits: Chris Plunkett (Dal vs Todd Simpson), Jerry Cookson (Rico Anthes at 1993 NitrOlympX).
Straightliners at Santa Pod, champions.
20th October: Congratulations to the winners of the Straightliners championship following their final race of the year on Sunday at Santa Pod Raceway:
Pro Extreme Car: Mark Flavell
Race ET: Nik Wilson
Street ET: Paul Smaile
Pro-Extreme: Mickey Blackburn
Class 6.00: Maxine Taylor
Class 6.50: Ashley Hodgson
Class 7.00: Daniel Leather
Class 7.50: Rob Kneeshaw
Wheelie Class:Jason King
Juniors: Jack Taylor
Nostalgic Pro Stock: Tyne Blight
Up to 750cc Racing Solo: Andy Higham
751cc to 1000cc Racing Solo: David Storrie - pictured right)
Unlimited cc Racing Solo and Classic Racing Solo: Mark Taylor
Sprint Legends: Colin Fallows
Classic Legends: Mick Varey
Top Scooter (Silhouette): Eric Cope
Top Scooter (Modified): Russ Shea
Class 8.50: Dean St Leger-White
Class 9.00: Mike Pacey
Class 9.50: Gill Pacey
Class 10.00: Adrian Horrocks
The racing at Santa Pod was abbreviated due to morning rain, however riders were able to run qualifying passes during the afternoon. New Straightliners records were established in the following classes:
Nostalgic Pro Stock: Claire Rule (Suzuki GSX EFE 1428cc), 8.72/147
751cc to 1000cc Racing Solo: Pete Field (Suzuki GSXR 1000cc - pictured right), 9.23/152
Unlimited cc Racing Solo: Steve Everett (Hayabusa 1300cc), 9.53/143
Classic Legends: Mick Varey (Suzuki Katana '81), 11.28/121
Complete lists of ETs and speeds recorded on Sunday, including a sizeable RWYB bike contingent, are available at this link.
We were sorry to hear that 6.00 Bike Champion Maxine Taylor came off her bike at speed and was hospitalised with back injuries. We wish Maxine a speedy recovery and return to the track in 2022.
Straightliners Championship and Melbourne Raceway Cup points are available on the 2021 Straightliners results repository or via our points standings page. Thanks to Martyn Greathead for posting the results and points.
Photos: David Storrie, Pete Field © Paul Fishwick Photography
20th October: A Happy 21st Birthday to Ruaridh Hart for today. Dad Ian Hart says "Ruaridh was runner up in the SPRC Junior Dragster championship in 2016 and has crewed on Paul Brown's two-seater dragster, Andy Harrison's Super Gas Sierra and latterly has been working on the clutch for Rune Fjeld Motorsport cars, including Maja Udtian, Anti Horto and Ida Zetterström. From the little four year old that got dragged along to the track by his dad, Ruaridh has not missed an event since 2004 and now builds race cars and sells Docol tube through his company RH Weldfab." We all at Eurodragster.com wish Ruaridh Many Happy Returns.
Happy Birthday to Super Pro ET racer Peter Lane, have a great day Peter from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
Thanks to John Harding for letting us know that his captioned photos from the September 2021 Hot Rod Drags at Santa Pod can be viewed at his Facebook page, the galleries numbered as Part I - Thu/Fri, Part II - Sat, and Part III - Sun.
Photographer Becci Ellis has updated her Flickr page with a gallery from Melbourne Raceway's round 6 held on 9th-10th October. You can see Becci's pictures by clicking here.
19th October: We were very sorry to hear of the passing of US Funny Car and Top Fuel racer and crew chief Dal Denton, who raced and crewed in Europe in the early 1990s, at the early age of 60 after a long battle with cancer.
Dal started his career in his native Texas with a number of Top Alcohol Funny Cars in the 1980s of which the most well known was called 'Sudden Pleasure' which he built and drove in the All American Funny Car Circuit as well as NHRA and IHRA. In 1991 he came over to Europe with a Dodge Daytona alcohol FC called "Euro Drag School" which, after racing it at Santa Pod, sold it to budding Top Alcohol racer Urs Erbacher. Whilst in Europe, Dal met Leif Helander and was crew chief for him on his alcohol-fuelled Saab 9000 in 1993.
Between 1993 and 1995, Dal was crew chief for Rico Anthes whose Top Fueler was sponsored by Dakota, Pioneer and Coke. In 1994 and 1995, Dal drove a second car for Rico at the NitrOlympX, being the rebuilt car from Rico's blowover at the 1993 World Finals at Santa Pod Raceway. On returning to the US in 1996, Dal got into jet dragsters, building and driving cars for a few years, followed by his final drive, an AA/FA, again going under the name Sudden Pleasure.
In contrast to drag racing, Dal was also a world champion on his cutting horse, a western-style equestrian competition in which a horse and rider work together before a judge or panel of judges to demonstrate the horse's athleticism and ability to handle cattle.
John Wright commented "I was crew chief for Viveca Averstedt at the same time that Dal and Rico raced in Top Fuel. I remember the fun we had sitting on Sunday night with Dal, Tony Bryntesson, Dan Soderburg (Monica Oberg's husband and crew chief) and others, trying to pick each other's brains for information."
We send our condolences to Dal's family and friends.
Stilwell to test at El Mirage.
19th October: Many thanks to Nitro Revival sponsor Geoff Stilwell who has some great news about his next trip to the USA:
After more than 18 months of not being able to travel to the USA myself and Nick Davies will be making the journey in November to Los Angeles. The 7707 Team consisting of Geoff Stilwell (Team Owner), Nick Davies (Crew Chief), Mick Jenkins of Micks Paint who built the car, together with Landspeed Motor Specialists John Beck who holds a host of land speed records himself and Paul Bowman. We cannot of course forget Team Jester Tony Thacker. All of us will be heading up to the dry lakebed of El Mirage to take part in the final land race series of 2021 organised by the SCTA (Southern Californian Timing Association). This will be the first time we have actually really been able to run the car properly since it was built in 2019 due to bad weather and then the pandemic. I would add that during the time off we have not been idle and in addition to all the constant updates we also made a commercial for Lucas Oil.
As this is testing sadly we won’t be able to run for any records at El Mirage, but this won’t stop us trying to go as fast as we can. This event will enable us to get to grips with this totally new car and will give me valuable seat time in preparation for our attempt on resetting the class record at over 300+mph next August on the Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Lucas Oil both in the UK and USA for being a fantastic supporter of the team, Nick, Rob and Scotty at I.C.E. (Team Havoc) for taking time out to crew for me, Ron & Brian Hope of Rat Trap for all their support and help, Mick Jenkins and all the team at Mick’s Paint for building me an amazing car and not forgetting John Beck of Vintage Hot Rods who has put together an incredible motor. I stand in awe and if anyone has seen the fire up video recently on Facebook they will know this is one exceptional car and of course Tony Thacker for looking after everything and being there whilst we have been stuck in the UK. We would not have been able to do what we are doing without Mick Jenkins and Tony so, special thanks guys.
For those interested in attending El Mirage the borders to the USA formally open on the 8th November. El Mirage is about 2 hours north of Los Angeles right near Victorville and there are plenty of Hotels nearby and camping is allowed on the lake bed. There will also be a live feed broadcast from the track and the link can be found at www.scta-bni.org.
19th October: Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Nostalgia Funny Car racer Tony Betts following a left hip replacement operation. See you back at the track before too long Tony.
VP Racing Fuels supports BDRHoF.
19th October: VP Racing Fuels, Inc., regarded worldwide as the leader in racing and performance fuel products, has committed to sponsor the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala.
"VP Racing Fuels is excited to be part of this year’s British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala," said Tom Davis, VP Racing Fuels’ UK and European Business Development Manager. "VP has a long tradition of supporting drag racing in the UK and around the world, and this event is a premier addition to our involvement."
While the Hall of Fame salutes drag racing’s past, it also seeks to foster the sport’s present and future by recognizing each season’s leading Junior Dragster and Junior Dragbike competitors. VP Racing Fuels will be a prominent supporter of this year’s awards to the champion Junior racers of both 2020 and 2021.
Hall of Fame Honorary Chair Lesley Wright said, "We’re equally excited that VP Racing Fuels has elected to support our Gala on its return after last year’s Covid-enforced postponement. We recognize that VP is becoming an increasingly important contributor to drag racing in the UK, and we’re grateful that the company has chosen to align itself with our continuing project to benefit the sport."
VP Racing Fuels joins the company of sponsors enabling the Hall of Fame to resume its annual Gala Awards Dinner after Covid-19 forced the cancellation of 2020’s celebration. The Gala returns this year to the Oatlands Park Hotel in Weybridge, Surrey, on Saturday, November 20.
For more information about VP and its products for racers, enthusiasts, and general consumers, visit vpracingfuels.com.
BDRHoF Gala sold out.
18th October: The Directors of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame have announced their 2021 Gala Dinner, to be held on 20th November at the Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge, is now completely sold out. Anyone who has made firm enquiries for tickets should contact Bev Bradbury at firstname.lastname@example.org to finalise their booking and payment.
The Oatlands Park Hotel has also informed the BDRHoF that all their room accommodation for the Gala Dinner is fully booked. The Directors of BDRHoF have suggested as alternative hotels the Best Western Ship Hotel, the Hilton in Cobham (7 miles away) or The Brooklands Hotel (which has a two-night minimum stay).
The Directors look forward to welcoming those who have booked tickets at 5:30pm on 20th November for a Drinks Reception in La Terrazza Suite presented by Santa Pod Raceway.
SPRC Dinner Dance sold out.
18th October: Thanks to Yvonne Tramm of Santa Pod Racers Club for sending an update on the Clubs' Dinner Dance Trophy Presentation Evening on 29th January 2022 at the Mecure Centre Hotel Bedford (details in our news update on 27th September):
"Thank you for the amazing response to our Dinner Dance Trophy Night. Tickets are now completely sold out."
Melbourne Raceway to lengthen braking area.
17th October: Melbourne Raceway have announced a new funding appeal for lengthening the braking area from the current eighth mile racing surface.
Trevor Duckworth of Straightliners said "The next round of funding is going to be for the extra 200 meters of braking area. As we progress and we attract the faster cars and bikes we need to get this done over the winter. This is our priority and if we get the funding in, approximately £40,000, it's a big target I know, but we can and will do it." The additional braking area will bring the total length to 700 metres. Eighth mile racing will continue, however the extra braking area will allow quicker cars and bikes to run at the track.
The page you can go to in order to contribute is at this link. If you wish to donate by BACS the details are Sort Code 20-98-98, Account Number 13430782.
As of this morning over £7,000 has been raised in just over three days.
Pictured: Ant Harris's dragster © Tog.
Spitfire Raceway's November event.
17th October: Eurodragster.com sponsor Lee Child of LA Racing Parts has announced the next event at Spitfire Raceway, Perranporth, Cornwall.
"There will be more VP Racing Fuels products for the top 6 on the drag strip Saturday 20th November. Also, it’s way overdue, the bike record hasn’t changed for a long time. Maybe it will be different at the next event on Saturday 20th November and the current record will be reset to under the 9.97/141 recorded by Mark 'Wolfy' Smith (pictured left) back in 2016.
"Drag or drift competitors can enter in advance by going online to the Spitfire Raceway web site at www.spitfireraceway.com. You can buy a spectator admission ticket for £10 (under 16s go free), and, if you have a crash helmet and full driving licence you can then go drifting or Run What You Brung drag racing once registered. £10 buys you one dragstrip run, £20 three runs and £35 unlimited runs. £60 buys you unlimited drifting. "Gates open at 8am, with track action 11am to 3pm. All vehicles have a safety check for drag racing and drifting, and drag strip riders and drivers meeting at race control 10.45am.
"Camping is £10 per night per head and kids go free. Pre enter the drag racing or drifting on line first then to book your camping by calling 01872 552856. If you have any roll over credits from previously cancelled events please email Kevin@perranporthairfield.com."
Spitfire Raceway is located at Perranporth and the postcode for your sat nav is TR5 0XS."
Ain't No Saint winner of Hot Wheels Legends UK tour.
16th October: Congratulations to entrant Eleanor Jones and the Ain't No Saint Volvo P1800 team Lee Johnstone with wife Sue and daughters Eleanor, Sarah and Victoria, for winning the the Hot Wheels Legends UK tour and proceeding to the next round of the worldwide Hot Wheels Legends tour where the overall winner will have their custom-built car in with a chance of becoming immortalized as a Hot Wheels die cast sold around the world.
The distinguished judging panel, chaired by Car Throttle’s Alex Kersten, were designer Ian Callum CBE FRSE, automotive photographer Amy Shore and podcaster/Youtuber Sam 'Seen Through Glass' Fane.
You can see the livestream of the selection and videos of the cars entered at this link including Ain't No Saint and Wayne Allman's Mental Breakdown VW Pickup which was highly commended by the panel.
The Volvo P1800 Gasser will contest in the Semi Finals of the competition on 4th November, with the chance of going onto the Global Final on 13th November. The global winning car will be immortalised as a Hot Wheels 1:64 scale die-cast for both children and collectors to enjoy. To learn more about the Hot Wheels Legends Tour visit www.hotwheels.mattel.com and follow #HotWheelsLegendsTour.
Image © Santa Pod Raceway.
US opening - too late for some.
16th October: With the disappointing announcement yesterday by the US Federal Government that entry of non-US citizens to the US has been delayed to 8th November, it seems that those planning to travel from Europe to the West Coast will be unable to attend Nitro Revival taking place on 6th-7th November. European visitors will also be unable to attend the California Hot Rod Reunion on 22nd-24th October, Dodge SRT Nationals at the Strip Las Vegas on 29th-31st October and SEMA Show at the Las Vegas Convention Center as a result of the the same delays.
However, those with a later trip planned to Auto Club NHRA Finals on 11th-14th November or Man Cup World Finals on 18th-21st November are still advised to check with their airlines before finalising travel arrangements.
Our Nitro Revival sponsor Geoff Stilwell explains: "the Airline Assoc of Europe have been demanding a date and every country is running out of patience. To put it into context, any plane takes one month to ready if it has not been flown for the past year, due to safety checks. Plus, they have to submit to the FAA in the US the flight plans a minimum 30 days before the flight to get permission to enter US airspace. The US government say they want to open up the borders but until today have not actually said when. And where we have the phone app, in the US it is all done by paper."
We can only wish travellers to the US after 8th November a safe and trouble free journey. In the meantime, Geoff has released a photo of the latest addition to his US stable, a junior Ford EXP funny car in Blue Max livery.
Image © Tony Thacker.
Zerbst Test & Tune media.
16th October: Last weekend the Hanau Auto Racing Association held a season ending test & tune at Zerbst Airport on 9th-10th October. The location had held test & tunes on 1st May, 26th-27th June, and a FWD Shootout on 17th July. Organising and track lessors AMC Dessau organised a race on 28th-29th August as well but sadly that was a rainout. So members' championship points were calculated on their performances at the ATD Clastres Dragway events.
You can see photos of the October Zerbst Test & Tune from Bob's Albums at this link. Harald Czekalla has posted photos of all the season at his Motografie web site.
And now for something completely different, there was a "Stoppie" competition involving FWD cars launching and then putting the anchors out sharpish around 60-100ft down track. You can see a Youtube video of this extraordinary competition (if that's the correct term) at this link.
ACU affiliation codes available.
14th October: Many thanks to to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for letting us know that from 1st November ACU licence applications are being accepted on the ACU website:
Affiliation codes for ACU riders are now available from SPRC, please just email email@example.com and I will get the code to riders by return, please note you must be an SPRC Member to obtain the code.
Straightliners Round 9 at Santa Pod this weekend.
14th October: The final round of the Straightliners Championship will be held at Santa Pod Raceway this weekend 16th-17th October.
Championships will be decided for all the Straightliners car, bike and scooter classes as noted under Melbourne Cup Championship below, however the Straightliners Championship additionally has points awarded from Elvington on 25th July, Armstrong Raceway on 1st August and the Santa Pod finals. The best 8 out of these 9 rounds will count, with the final round at Santa Pod Raceway being a double points scoring round.
Car and bike/scooter entry is available at the Straightliners web site. Spectator tickets are available direct from the Santa Pod website and must be purchased in advance. Competitors must also have a Santa Pod ticket to gain entry on the day.
Photo © Mad Welshman: Mickey Blackburn, Pro-Extreme points leader
Melbourne Cup Championship points.
14th October: Congratulations to the winners of the Melbourne Cup Championship for the six races held at Melbourne Raceway during the year:
Pro Extreme Car: Pete Youhill
Race ET: Nik Wilson (photo right, courtesy Mark Nightingale of Image Village)
Street ET: Paul Smaile
Pro-Extreme: Mickey Blackburn
Class 6.00: Maxine Taylor
Class 6.50: Ashley Hodgson
Class 7.00: Gilbert Cook
Class 7.50 and Sprint Legends: Colin Fallows
Wheelie Class:Jason King
Juniors: Jack Taylor
Nostalgic Pro Stock: Kevin Melling
Up to 750cc Racing Solo: Andy Higham
751cc to 1000cc Racing Solo: David Storrie
Unlimited cc Racing Solo and Classic Racing Solo: Mark Taylor
Top Scooter (Silhouette): Eric Cope
Top Scooter (Modified) and Class 10.00: Adrian Horrocks
Class 8.50: Dean St Leger-White
Class 9.00: Mike Pacey
Class 9.50: Gill Pacey
Straightliners Championship and Melbourne Raceway Cup points are available on the Straightliners results repository or via our points standings page. Thanks to Martyn Greathead for posting the points.
Overseas racers at Man Cup Finals?
14th October: Back in September, the organisers of Man Cup in the USA announced they were excited to see changes in travel restrictions that will allow for foreign travel in time for the 45th annual FuelTech World Finals at South Georgia Motorsports Park on 18th-21st November, 2021. Foreigners will be allowed into the USA if they have proof of vaccination and a negative COVID-19 test.
Whilst three Top Fuel Bike teams from the UK (Gulf Oil, PBR Rocket III and Allan Davies) have confirmed they will not be attending, we wait to see if other European teams will make the journey.
Lex ready for Thunder Valley.
13th October: Since Lex Joon and wife Gerda emigrated to the United States in 2013, he has worked hard – and never quit – to get his performance to the level that won him an FIA Championship in 2005. Recent signs show the work is bearing fruit, and Lex is marketing his racing operation with renewed vigour as he heads towards Bristol Motor Speedway for this weekend's Thunder Valley Nationals.
After emigrating and establishing a company Lex Joon Racing, Inc. to work with US sponsor companies, Lex hired a well-known motorsports marketing agency to help find partners that would be interested in working with him as a proven Top Fuel winner in Europe.
After considerable work in gathering support and preparing the car, Lex ran a best of 4.069/232 at the 2018 US Nationals, which didn't qualify him for eliminations. He also failed to qualify for the Midwest Nationals or the Carolina Nationals.
In 2019 the team with experienced crew chief Lance Larsen raced in 11 events, 4 weeks in a row at Chicago, Topeka, Bristol (where he memorably defeated Leah Pruett in round one) and Norwalk. In 2020 however the pandemic reduced Lex's racing activity to just four races at his local track Indianapolis Raceway Park which hosted multiple events whilst travel was restricted.
The team's 2021 campaign with Rob Flynn (previously with Kalitta Motorsports for six years and 15 years of NHRA nitro experience before that) as consultant tuner, and Lex himself and Gerda as co-crew chiefs, started at Indy, at which Lex was excited about the car's first run in 2021: "All preparations worked out as we had planned. The car left the starting line with an .854 sixty foot time and a 330 foot time of 2.18 sec running it full throttle for 2.02 seconds. This was a planned shut off run since there was no testing opportunity available before the NHRA US Nationals event as usual."
However rain after the strong launch prevented Lex from qualifying. He said "I’m puzzled and disappointed to learn this years #USnats qualifying is called due to rain and the teams that are not qualified have to deal with the fact they only had one chance to make it into the biggest NHRA race in the world."
Undeterred, Lex went on to St Louis, ran his quickest-ever qualifying run in his US campaign, 3.953/240.12, and said it "proved his car can run the numbers to qualify and go rounds at all tracks around the globe. The tune up we ran last weekend was really soft just to make it from A to B. To see it ran 3.03 sec with “only” 275mph to the 1/8 mile tells the story." Sadly the bump spot was 3.809 so Lex did not feature in eliminations.
"In Q1 we had a new set of rear Goodyear slicks mounted which need about two runs to create the desired traction. The first second of the run wheel spin was too high moving the front of the car to the right while the front wheels were up in the air. When I was able to make the correction the car was out of the groove moving over towards the centre line to the other side of the lane which got me out of the groove again. The right rear slick had more traction being in the groove and pushed me to the centre line. Tyre pressure, adjusting ignition timing and clutch settings will help to prevent this but more runs on the tyres will help to fix this issue for sure."
He also stepped up his promotion of his main sponsor. "You will see the Hot Wheels Premium Car Care logos on the car because I’m taking care of the global sales for this unique and one of a kind brand. This is for me to help create global awareness and drive sales for our partners like for example CoolDrive Auto Parts in Australia.
Lex has put a plan together for upcoming NHRA races to find the necessary funding to be able to continue his presence at track, work on the team's program, and also give his fans an opportunity to be part of his #NeverQuit team. The plan revolves around a new reality TV series titled Pursuit, designed to integrate existing lifestyle marketing (aligning teams and the NHRA) with a reality show alliance.
In addition the Lex Joon team sponsorship program now extends to fan opportunities. Lex said "We have received requests from our fans if there is a way to be part of our #NeverQuit LJR program like some other (independent) teams as opportunity occasionally provide. As you know our Fans are our #1 reason we NeverQuit and so we listened and came up with an opportunity with On top of the perks presented we are also going to give away some of the Hot Wheels Premium Car Care products. Winners will be randomly picked. This give away offer is valid for the USA with more countries to follow soon.
"When you want to treat yourself or maybe your partner with a cool present this is your chance. We have created an opportunity to add your name on our Top Fuel dragster for the upcoming NHRA race in Bristol Oct 15th-17th. On top of the perks presented we are looking to add two crew tickets to the Tier 2 package deal which will get you an experience of a lifetime. When you purchase or already have purchased the Tier 2 #FanDriven program costing $200, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and explain us how you believe you can support us as part of our team during the Thunder Valley Nationals.
Lex acknowledges the support of NHRA, Gates Corporation, CP-Carillo Gates, Nitro Alley Graphix, INOX Lubricants, Start Imagining, SAVE22Veterans, ProThings clothing, Earp Machinery, TF Logistics, Premium Motorsports Products, CoolDrive Auto Products, Tom Knapp and Custom Floaters.
We wish Lex, Gerda and the whole Lex Joon Racing Team a successful Thunder Valley Nationals this weekend.
13th October: We send Happy Birthday greetings to Supercharged Outlaws racer Aaron Windridge and Super Pro ET racer Glenn Pallant for today, have a great day from all of us at Eurodragster.com. Also a belated Happy Birthday to British Drag Racing Hall of Fame member and UK Tech member and sometime Top Methanol dragster crewman Tim Read, hope you had a great day yesterday.
Photojournalist Steve Moxley has had his report on the STP Summer Nationals from Santa Pod Raceway published on Tim Hailey's Eat My Ink web site. You can read all the snippets and see some great photos by clicking on the link.
This weekend Serres Racing Circuit in Greece hosts the fourth race of this year's Greece Drag Racing Championship. The race will be organised by Serres organisers LENOE under the auspices of Greek Motorsport regulators OMAE where you can see an entry list.
Malta Drag Racing club have announced their November meeting will be extended to four days on 11th-14th November with a full day of practice on Thursday followed on Friday with two hour practice and then qualifying and eliminations from that point. There will be quite a few Brits travelling to Malta to join the party, but if you're watching the live stream you will be able to hear the commentary of European FWD organiser and VWDRC Chair and racer Luke Stevenson who will be guest announcer at the track. There will be a pre-event Run What Ya Brung on 30th October.
ACU final standings published.
12th October: Many thanks to Ian King for updating us on the latest ACU/UK Championship positions on the King Racing web site.
Ian would like to congratulate all the riders who competed in this Covid troubled year and thank all the staff and officials at Santa Pod Raceway, the SPRC and the ACU for their hard work in ensuring a thrilling and safe championship in 2021.
Special congratulations to the riders who achieved top 3 positions in their respective classes to win ACU Championship medals and in addition for those in the 'pro' classes their share of the ACU prize fund. The winners of their class will be awarded their trophies and medals alongside their peers from all British motorcycle sports at the ACU British Championship Gala Awards dinner in the new year:
Top Fuel Bike
Steve Woollatt: 1210 pts
Al Smith: 1150 pts
Neil Midgley: 910 pts
Stuart Crane: 2000 pts
Tony Clark: 1660 pts
Dave Peters: 1540 pts
Louis Davies: 2085 pts
Chris Neary: 1360 pts
Sean Mills: 975 pts
Super Street Bike:
Steve Venables: 2725
Alan Morrison Jr: 1990 pts
Stephen Mead: 1340 pts
Junior Drag Bike:
Hollie King: 1740 pts
Casey Holgate: 1640 pts
Meg Talbot: 1270 pts
The complete points tables and positions can be found by clicking here.
Melbourne Round 6 results.
12th October: Congratulations to the winners at Melbourne Raceway at Round 6 over the weekend:
Duck All Prep
Super Pro Comp (Sunday): Andy Fadster 5.94/142 def. Lee Gallimore 5.87/122
Pro Rear Wheel Drive (Roll over from Duck All 1): Mark Flavell 5.06/145 def. Pete Youhill 5.76/128
(Saturday): Pel Norman 5.33/139 def. Ian Walley 6.73/118
(Sunday): Pel Norman 5.40/123 def. Ian Walley 6.31/120
Pro Small Tyre Rear Wheel Drive (Saturday): Lee Chiles 6.56/110 def. Dave Billadeau 6.65/110
(Sunday): Lee Chiles 6.57/110 def. Russ Pursley
Street Rear Wheel Drive (Saturday): Derek Beck 7.36/97 def. Peter Lane 7.86/91
(Sunday): Peter Lane 7.80/92 def. Derek Beck, broke
Street All Wheel Drive (Saturday): Steve Long 7.71/96, unopposed
Pro Front Wheel Drive (Saturday): Craig Brown 9.66/69, unopposed
UK Nostalgia Superstock
(Saturday): Dave Billadeau 6.61/110 def. Paul Smail 8.36/85
(Sunday): Lee Chiles 6.53/110 def. Andrew Bosomworth 6.73/107
National Street Car Challenge
(Saturday): Russ Pursley 6.32/110 def. Ian Walley 6.57/118
(Sunday): Ian Walley 6.45/117 def. Martin Rawlinson 7.26/98
Pro-Extreme: Mickey Blackburn 8.58/106, unopposed
Class 6.00: Maxine Taylor 6.14/126 def. Pete Field 6.14/125
Class 6.50: Ashley Hodgson 6.75/108 def. Phillip Tomlinson 7.38/90
Class 7.00: Robert Mercer 7.19/104 def. Jamie Brooks 6.97/118
Class 7.50: Rob Kneeshaw 7.99/95 def. Colin Fallows 8.37/91
Wheelie Class: Daniel Leather 9.37/83 def. Jason King 12.91/33
Juniors (Handicap): Jack Taylor 12.19/52 def. William Mountford 14.41/40
Top Scooter (Silhouette): Eric Cope 8.24/85, unopposed
Class 9.00: Mike Pacey 9.46/76, unopposed
Class 9.50: Gill Pacey 10.51/72, unopposed
Up to 750cc Racing Solo: Andy Higham, unopposed
751 to 1000cc Racing Solo: David Storrie 6.34/126 def. Terry Mountford 13.67/90
Unlimited cc Racing Solo: Mark Taylor, unopposed
Sprint Legends (Handicap): Colin Fallows, unopposed
Classic Legends (Handicap): Mark Taylor 6.51/118 def. Mick Varey 7.31/102
Blessed with superb weather all weekend it was another meeting of personal bests, track records and nailbiting finals.
The track was in fine form all weekend with Mark Flavell proving that with an experienced crew dialling the Steel City Hot Rod in record breaking pace could be achieved with a new track record set at 5.03secs, a 4sec run the next goal for the team. Pel Norman, who had been fastest lowered his PB to a 5.33secs.
NSCC once again had a big field of cars putting on a great show running rounds on both days. Duck All Prep was along for the 2nd meeting running their various classes. UK Nostalgia Superstocks were along for the first time providing some excellent racing with their dial in based format notable among them being Lee Chiles with two perfect runs to his dial in.
Eurodragster.com Perfect ET sponsor Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield commented "I’d like to take the opportunity to thank the whole of the Straightliners / Melbourne Raceway crew. We had a fantastic weekend and developed our tune to nett a 5.45 @ 146 with plenty in reserve to get closer to that magical 4 second pass next year. Team Twister had an amazing time and the welcome from friends, old and new, was heart warming. I look forward to next season with renewed enthusiasm and hope to bring many more Supercharged Outlaws UK with me."
It was great to see Supercharged Outlaws racers Lee Gallimore back with his blown 'Red Mist' alky 23T altered after a gap of three years. He commented "What a fantastic weekend, big thanks to a great crew, Liam, John and Jock top job lads as always. Fantastic to see everybody again brilliant Saturday crack as always. Thanks to Trevor/ Lee and all the Straightliners team for a great track and weekend. Brilliant old school racing."
Commiserations to Tom Parry whose new build Ford Consul Mk1 (powered by a twin turbo LS) rolled on Saturday, a photo sequence of which you can see from this link onwards. Tom commented "I climbed out without a scratch, cage and harness did their job."
Winners of the £50 consistency awards kindly donated by jdcomps.co.uk for times achieved on Sunday up until 3pm were Andrew Bosomworth with three runs between 6.78 and 6.80 seconds in his Dodge Coronet 8.2 Ltr and Pete Field with six runs between 6.24 and 6.40 seconds on his Suzuki GSXR 1000cc.
Full official results from the event and previous Melbourne rounds in 2021 can be found at the Straightliners Melbourne Raceway 2021 results repository, courtesy Martyn Greathead. All Straightliners results and championship points from 1997 onwards can be found at this link.
The final Melbourne Raceway event of the season is on 30th-31st October, a RWYB meet with the BBC attending to film part of a drag racing documentary.
Photos courtesy and © Mad Welshman Photography
GTI Festival results.
11th October: Congratulations to James Rhodes (pictured right) who won the VWDRC Heads Up race which took place at Santa Pod Raceway yesterday. Here are the results of the race:
Carl Goldsmith 11.7099/100.99 def. Wayne Gill 11.0546/125.80
Mike Whittaker 10.1742/129.18 def. Marc Taylor 10.5452/142.93
Paul Jackson 11.5749/138.67 def. Ant Mincher 12.2047/119.80
Jamie Lockyer 11.5433/123.10 def. Paul Jordan 11.9788/104.25
James Rhodes 10.3380/136.58 def. Grant Parker 10.6109/127.94
Jose Leite 13.4895/129.04 def. Chris Waterhouse, NTR
Helder Pereira 9.8066/147.60 def. Chris Roylance 12.6063/110.84
Jacob Bailey 9.7888/153.11 def. Ed Keech 15.5180/57.61
Jamie Lockyer 12.3092/95.50 def. Helder Pereira, no-show
Jacob Bailey 9.8878/151.12 def. Carl Goldsmith 10.6509/138.55
James Rhodes 10.1548/136.59 def. Mike Whittaker 10.7799/99.04
Paul Jackson 9.9986/144.88 def. Jose Leite 23.6019/43.30
James Rhodes 10.2931/135.64 def. Jacob Bailey 16.2200/64.13
Paul Jackson 9.9272/144.89 def. Jamie Lockyer 14.3037/117.93
James Rhodes 10.2516/136.45 def. Paul Jackson 10.9274/145.30
With acknowledgements to Santa Pod Raceway timing crew.
Winner James Rhodes commented "What a way to end the season! New Pb for the Lupo - 10.15 @ 136 with a 1.41 60ft, getting ever closer to that 9 second pass and the 1.3 60ft, and to top it all off 1st place in the heads up competition! The Lupo performed great all weekend, it feels great to bring home a trophy, but even better that Hannah and Jacob were there to share it too!"
Runner-up Paul Jackson said "Wow, wow, wow! What a GTi that was! So many great runs and achievements this weekend, here’s a few of my highlights: Firstly huge congratulations to James Rhodes for taking the Heads Up win, you absolutely smashed it mate! Jacob, 9.75 @ 153! Incredible, well done on cracking the 150! What an achievement. Becki for fastest Aircooled and Fastest lady! Bad luck with the car but at least Jay knows a thing or two about these engines. Ed Keech has not only built the engine, but also wired it and is mapping it himself, PB of 11.31 today, that 10 is just round the corner! Luis and the rest of the Portuguese engine replacement army! I’m absolutely amazed at all of your dedication, I had Jose E2, I saw the engine was out with 30 minutes to go and I said ‘100% that car will be on the start line’ And it was. Alex Day, what a way to be be 16 years old and 11 days! Absolutely fantastic seeing you out racing. Bruce ‘Mr Wheels Up’ Kopasz - say no more. PB’s for Jamie and Ben, the Cab is definitely getting there Ben and that 10 can’t be far off Jamie! I had a pretty good day too. As always, a wicked weekend with the VWDRC family, can’t wait to do it all over again."
You can see a gallery of the GTi Festival including Show N' Shine by going to Santa Pod Raceway's Facebook gallery of the event. Video of the event taken from the tower by commentator and VWDRC chair Luke Stevenson can be seen at the VWDRC Facebook page.
Melbourne Round 6 Saturday results, gallery.
11th October: Thanks to photographer The Mad Welshman for sending us photos from Saturday of the Melbourne Round 6 race at the weekend including Straightliners Championship, NSCC and Duck All Prep competitions.
You can see Mad's on- and off-track pictures by going to our Melbourne Round 6 gallery or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page.
Mad commented "Melbourne Raceway had a great turnout and the track record broken again! We reached a huge milestone on our Flickr page early this week (10 million views!) so thanks to everyone who has viewed our photos".
Saturday results for the competitions held plus best times, courtesy of Martyn Greathead of Straightlines, can be seen at the following links:
We will report in more detail on action from Melbourne Raceway in tomorrow's update.
10th October: We were sad to hear of the passing of street car racer George Bebikian, known for his Ford Zephyr. George's son Kai writes:
"My Father, known to many as George, sadly passed away on Thursday morning after spending 10 months battling through a variety of illnesses in hospital. He was a veteran of Santa Pod Raceway first racing there back in the early eighties, he owned his distinctive Ford Zephyr for over 30 years and had taken it from a 14 second AMC powered street machine to a 9.2 second big block Chevy powered street demon. Dad was a font of knowledge on many subjects, he was always reading and researching. He freely offered his wisdom to many at the track, always willing to help others.
"He never raced in any pro class, preferring the casual structure of classes such as Street Machine SRS and Outlaw Street. Dad enjoyed these classes as he always maintained that the car was a true street car, driving it from London to Santa Pod to race.
"He will be sorely missed and the drag racing world is a poorer place for his passing. He passed away peacefully surrounded by his family who he loved very much."
We send our deepest condolences to George's family and friends.
Kjula Dragway ahead of the curve.
8th October: In Sweden, Kjula Dragway near Eskiltuna has run four Mälardalen races (named after the lake in southeast Sweden) on its quarter mile during 2021 despite crowd restrictions limiting spectator attendance to 600. During the season and since the final event on 18th-19th September, the organisation behind the Kjula have not been slow in promoting the track.
The track's web site says that it is a successor to Tullinge, located close to Stockholm, which was closed in 2006. Organisers Ronnie Palmsäter and Börje Thunmen located Eskiltuna Airport around 60 miles to the west, and initially ran hot rods and vintage drag racing vehicles. But the classes were later broadened to all classes of race cars. Nevertheless the track still positions itself as a gateway to the bigger classes in the sport and having fun is the main objective. The track acknowledges its debt to the local community in allowing its four events annually.
To improve space available for pits in 2021 the bold decision was taken to reverse the direction of the track, which also enabled the startline surface to be preserved rather than being completely removed annually as part of airport maintenance.
A record 179 competitors took to the track surface for the final 2021 round held on 19th-20th September. The quickest cars were to be found in 4to6 Pro where the top qualifier Tobias Johansson from Läckeby pretty much swept the board, qualifying #1 in a field of 19 cars and then winning four rounds of racing Tobias ran a best in qualifying of 7.3564/ 294.72 kph. Tobias races a chrome moly chassised and fibreglass bodied Volvo 142 (above left) with a 5 cylinder 2.4l Volvo engine with a turbo coupled to a Liberty gearbox.
In the large bracket race (ETs 9.00s to 12.99), there were 31 qualifiers including a certain Jimmy Ålund of multiple FIA Pro Stock championship fame, who qualified fourth and went out in round 2. Eventual winner was Viktor Olsson, who qualified #16 and kept ahead of all his competitors.
Fourteen Junior Dragsters entered with Marcus Andersson qualifying #1 and going on to win the race from Emile Eriksson. Pro Street (7.60 index) had Anna Knutes qualify #1 however in the final she was defeated on a holeshot by Peter Almqvist in a nitrous assisted BBC-engined Chevelle (above right).
Street (8.60 index) was dominated by Lennart Hilander from Åland in a Chevy Vega, Real Street was won by Leif Näsman in a '80 Malibu, and in Stock/Super Stock the victor was Fredrik Frisberg in his Plymouth Sport Fury from 1964 (above left). In Vintage B Johan Carlsson was the winner with a 8.988/240.2 bye run in his blown SBC 5 window coupe, and in Vintage G Kjell Andersson (above right) won in his '56 Ford Crown Victoria when the nine second Nova of Stefan Flodell, which incidentally is up for sale for £19,500, didn't show.
Pro Comp Bike featured the Honda GreenBird (Kawasaki-bodied) of Peter Rundström and was won by Jens Karlsson on a Hayabusa (below left). Super Comp Bike (8.50 index) had Peter Östlund qualify #1 and then take the eight bike ladder on his Suzuki 1100 turbo (below right). A similar clean sweep of Super Gas Bike (9.50 index) occurred with Jesper Jerresten with a Suzuki GSX-R1216. The Gathojar class for street bikes was won by Kim Hilander on a Suzuki GSXR 1000 and Junior Drag Bike was a best of three between Moa Nilsson (Yamaha FZR 400) and Alfred Lagerlöf (Honda CBR 125) which Moa won two of three, running a best of 6.59/170.1 on the eighth (JB Pro has an index of 6.50).
Since the race dates have been announced for the four races planned in 2022, on 28th-29th May, 18th-19th June, 6th-7th August and 17th-18th September. There was also a swap meet on 1st October, and the prize banquet is planned next Saturday 16th October. Kjula Raceway is looking forward to starting next season with as good a finish as they had in 2021 with many teams, a large audience (without restrictions next year) and many fast times. How much fun would that be?
You can see full results at www.dragracing.eu and a Facebook photo gallery by Henrik Lindberg at this link. Also posting a FB album from the event was Micke Falk.
Above photos courtesy and © Henrik Lindberg.
Happy 85th Keith Parnell!
8th October: The Storm Drag Bike team wish a Happy 85th Birthday to drag bike legend Keith Parnell:
On behalf of the team, Lorcan Parnell said "Keith ran the first 8 second quarter mile by a non-American rider in June 1975, and Motorcycle Mechanics magazine made him part of their pull-out centrespread calendar that year. He was also voted 9th overall in Motor Cycle News "man of the year" award, the highest I think any motorcycle drag racer has reached in that publication. He also set the FIM world record for a 750cc bike in the quarter mile at RAF Elvington."
All of us at Eurodragster.com join the Storm Drag Bike team in wishing Keith a very Happy Birthday.
Whatever happened to the Flux Capacitor?
8th October: Many thanks to Julian for letting us know that on his awesome Youtube channel The Late Brake Show, Jonny Smith tells the back story of how in 2012 he built a drag racing version of an electric vehicle and came out with the Enfield 8000 aka the Flux Capcitor.
This fascinating video shows Jonny's inspirations for embarking on this extreme electric project car build - which became the world's quickest street legal EV. Starting with the least likely of base cars, a British electric city car from the 1970s and rebuilding it with almost 1000hp, with help from Eurodragster.com sponsor Jon Webster with Ollie and Sam Young from Black Current Racing.
This 'project cars' episode tells the retrospective story of why and how Jonny went about converting the 1974 Enfield 8000 ECC (Electric City Car) to become an extreme electric drag car, which went on to clinch the world record in 2016. 9 second quarter miles in a 9ft long car with no traction control or launch control. To find out what happened after this, you will need to see the end of the video.
You can see Jonny's video by clicking on this link. The original web site documenting the car and its build is still up at www.flux-capacitor.co.uk.
GTI Festival preview.
7th October: At Santa Pod Raceway this Sunday 10th October, the GTI Festival takes place. Back in April the GTI Spring Festival was cancelled, so this Sunday's event will try to pack two events into one. Entry remains £35 for Run What Ya Brung, £15 for adult spectators and £5 for children and you can enter before the day by going to this link.
The GTI Festival is for enthusiasts of all VAG marques, SEAT, Skoda, Audi and of course Volkswagen. The Volkswagen Group now includes Lamborghini, Bentley and Bugatti too.
Awards on the track include quickest VW, Audi, SEAT and Skoda, as well as a number of awards based on engine sizes - there are 12 ET awards in all. We will publish details of the awards next week.
The main competition on the track is VW Drag Racing Club Heads Up which has an entry of no less than 25 cars fighting for a place in a 16 car ladder. You can check out the previous rounds on the VWDRCTV YouTube channel by clicking on the links for round 1 and round 2.
The Show & Shine has a massive number of awards including Best of Show, Best Engineering, Best Paint, Best Engine and 18 more. And there are other attractions such as club displays, Dizzy Rascals autotests, and the Girlz N Dubz competition with its own special trophies.
The action begins at 09:30 on Sunday 10th October.
RAD Design Lines competition winner.
7th October: In our 7th September update we mentioned a colouring competition from Darren West of Power Race Graphics through his new brand RAD Design Lines. Darren writes:
We have our winner! Hawk Racing have picked the fantastic work of Scarlett Austin as the winner of our Gladiator / Hawk Racing colouring sheet competition. The RAD Design Lines 'Door Slammers' colouring book and special prize from the team at Hawk Racing are on the way!
RAD Design Lines colouring books are in the post to the runners up, and huge thanks to all the design stars for their amazing entries - we loved them all! Thanks also go to the Hawk Racing team for being great sports handing out the colouring sheets all weekend and showing the kids the beautiful Gladiator funny car.
Stay tuned in to the RAD Design Lines pages on social media for news of the next colouring book release which will be launched in time for Christmas!
7th October: A reminder that MrD Slot Drag Racing returns to Brentwood this Sunday 10th October 2021 where there will be a full length (6 hours) event at Brentwood RC Raceway Unit K1 Frieze Hall Farm Coxtie Green Road Brentwood Essex CM14 5RE. Action will include MrD Crazy Horse and Outlaw Elimination races as well as the MrD Gasser Circus and starts at 11am with the first race around midday. (pictured: Winners Circle from 1st October meeting for Outlaw Round 2 - winner Matt Dudley Ford XP ET: 0.799, runner up Alec Quarman 57 Chevy Sportsman ET: 0.834. Photo: Steven Dudley.).
Videographer Terry Robbins has published two videos to Youtube of action from the 2021 Hot Rod Drags, filmed from the spectator banking. You can see Outlaw Anglia action at this link and Supercharged Outlaws at this link.
Photojournalist Steve Moxley has published his detailed report on ACU classes at the STP National Finals on the ACU web site which you can see by clicking on this link.
Funny Bike racer, and winner of the class in the National Finals, Dave Peters, has had his story documented in his local newspaper, The Mail based in Barrow-in-furness, and you can see an online version of the report by clicking here. In it, Dave reveals he has plans to bring the legendary Imperial Wizard built and ridden by the late Brian Johnson back to the track.
Dakota Raceway October rain event.
6th October: Last weekend at Dakota Raceway, despite soggy weather, racing still took place in the drag, draft and NSA motorcycle championship. It is hard to remember racing taking place in such appalling conditions for a long time, and well done to organiser and Eurodragster.com sponsor Lee Child for persisting despite the deluge that swamped the track. Lee said after the event "To every rain warrior that attended, you are totally and utterly hardcore, thank you."
Congratulations to the car winners of the drag racing that took place for trophies and cash. They are:
Rear Wheel Drive: Pete Lane (Plymouth Barracuda), runner up Ian Walley (Ford Cortina Mk2)
Front Wheel Drive: Jamie Cole (Mini), runner-up Mark Swanborough (Ford Fiesta)
All Weel Drive: Nick Martin (Mercedes), runner-up Nick Turner (Nissan GTR)
Other cars who braved the conditions included Marcus Chapman (Subaru Impreza STV AWD), Stephen Cherrett (Vauxhall Astra FWD), Kevin Headon (Pontiac GTO Le Mans RWD), Conor Jeffries (Ford Mustang RWD) and Connor Parsons (Ford Fiesta FWD).
The car racers were joined by a handful of bike racers who ran late morning, and although the event was the final round of the NSA Southern Championship, official confirmation of the results is awaited.
Bikes pictured are Pete Francois (Suzuki GT250 – 42), Andrew Langdon - Honda VT250 – 66), Peter Ford (Suzuki Bandit Hillclimb Spl – 160), Tony Lockwood (Norton ES2 - V168 ), Rob Bowyer (Suzuki TL1000 – 202) and Barry Curtis (red Kawasaki GPZ1000).
You can check out our gallery of pictures from Dakota Raceway taken by Jerry Cookson, Alison Jackson, Lee Child and Kerrie Lane by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page.
Mk1Kieran video update.
6th October: Kieran has posted two videos to his Mk1Kieran Youtube channel from last Sunday's Japshow Finale. Kieran reports: "As the show season comes to a close in the UK, the Jap Show Finale is one of the last big 'Lifestyle' events hosted by Santa Pod Raceway. Jap Show Finale has it all for any Japanese Car (or bike!) fan! You can expect to see Drag Racing, Drifting, Show & Shine and Stunts in the Live Action Arena. Here's some clips I got throughout the day of the RWYB Action on the Drag Strip. The Japshow Finale Shootout, where 20 racers raced heads up for a cash prize, will be in a separate video!"
Also posted by Kieran is the unfortunate incident where in Q1 of the Japshow Finale Shootout, Gary Gooding launched his 7 second Supra but it turned hard right with the wheels up in the air and hit the wall head on. Kieran said "Thankfully Gary was ok as he has all the right safety gear in the car and a well built chassis. The team suspect that water was up in the sills from the heavy rain the day before and went onto the rear tyres the moment it launched."
Ain't No Saint in Hot Wheels competition.
6th October: Co-creator of the unique Ain't No Saint Volvo P1800 gasser Lee Johnstone has entered the car, built in conjunction with Steve Wright, in the Hot Wheels collectors UK Legend Tour with this video around the construction of the car which is driven by Lee and daughters Eleanor, Sarah and Victoria.
Lee says "Regardless of our success (the prize is to have the car made into a Hot Wheels toy) it is a nice record of the build process". It shows how the idea of building a gasser based on this car, made famous by The Saint TV series, developed over time, and how various features such as the headers exiting through the wings came about.
Duck All Prep at Melbourne this weekend.
5th October: Sponsor Lee Child of LA Racing Parts writes that more prizes to be supplied by sponsors VP Racing Fuels will be up for grabs at the Duck All Prep 2 no-prep Race to be held this weekend, 9th-10th October at Melbourne Raceway:
"It will be a heads up drag race cash weekend, first to the finish line on 9th & 10th October. Entry includes run what you brung and two crew tickets Let’s race again, get those entries coming to win, cash, trophies and sponsor products prize fund. We will be presenting fuel jugs, delux hoses, goody bags and Stay Cool product from VP Racing Fuels."
There will be the same categories raced at the previous Duck All Prep race in September:
Pro AWD: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street AWD: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Pro Small Tyre Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres maximum height 30 inches maximum tread width 11 inches, interior removed.
Street Rear Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Front Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Front Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Super Pro Comp: Pure competition vehicles, altereds, rear engine dragsters, front engine dragsters and funny cars, where the driver is seated in a central position in the vehicle.
With two days of separate eliminations, one on Saturday and another on Sunday, the prizes give a driver a chance of winning £800 over the weekend, if they choose to run the whole weekend.
Based on a 16 car field, the winner gets £400 in each category. In the event of numbers in each category not being fulfilled, there will be a reduced prize fund, for example in a 4 car category £150 and 8 car category £200. In event of the category exceeding 16 cars, the prize will go up from £400. Entry fees: Fees include driver entry to the Duck All prep race with Run What Ya Brung included, plus two crew tickets and free camping. For the best deal, pre-enter, as entry will cost more on the day.
Driver entry for Duck All Prep on Saturday 9th or Sunday 10th is £115, weekend entry for both Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th is £200. You can arrive from 6pm on the Friday if you are racing the full weekend.
Weekend spectator tickets are £30, or £35 including camping, or day tickets may be bought for £15 per day, all tickets available on line or at the gate. Straightliners/Melbourne Raceway Championship advance racer tickets are £140 for the weekend or £80 per day for a driver with two crew, or £50 per day at the gate with £15 each for each driver and crew member.
Click to enter at this link.
All there is now to do is to get entered! Cars entered so far include Mark Flavell (Super Pro Comp), Craig Brown (Pro Front Wheel Drive), Lee Chiles (Pro Small Tyre RWD), Pete Youhill and Kris Thoburn (Pro RWD).
There will be live music on Saturday night, a firework display, auctions of memorabilia by Pauline Cox and a raffle of a £50 note kindly donated by NSS racer Bob Main. Supporting this final Melbourne Raceway event of the season will take the venue another step forward. Follow Duck all prep drag race competition Melbourne Raceway on Facebook.
Duck All Prep pre entry at a discounted price closes 6pm Friday, with entry on the day available after that time.
Final 2021 SPRC Championship standings.
4th October: Many thanks to Yvonne Tramm for forwarding the final points standings in the UK National Drag Racing Championhips and SPRC Club Championships after the National Finals. You can check out the UK and SPRC points on our points standing pages by clicking here, or by clicking the Points Standings link under News in the main menu above.
In addition to the National and Club champions announced on 27th September, we congratulate the SPRC Club drag bike champions, whose points are calculated on a different basis to the National ACU championship:
Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike: Steve Woollatt
Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike: Steve Venables
Leeks Landscapes Funny Bike: Dave Peters
Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike: Louis Davies
Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike: Hollie King
Yvonne adds: "SPRC would like to congratulate all 2021 Winners and Runners up of their Championships and hope to see them at the Dinner Dance on 29 January 2022. Almost two thirds of the 300 tickets available have already been booked, so if you would like to attend to collect your trophy, please complete the form on the SPRC website and join us for the evening.
"Thank you for supporting the Club and the SPR track this season, and we look forward to seeing you all in 2022."
Japshow Finale Shootout results.
4th October: Congratulations to Mark Moseley who won the Japshow Finale Shootout which took place at Santa Pod Raceway yesterday. Here are the results of the race:
Dougie Gemmell 14.0436/121.55 def. Adam Skinner, no-show
Matt Davison 10.2714/139.88 def. Ian Milne 12.6139/134.12
Ahmed Jamshaid 10.1846/137.28 def. Craig Evans 11.1868/105.17
Allan Duthie 10.1259/155.76 def. Sean Prout 15.3469/58.04
Jack Burn 10.2286/143.50 def. Simon Durrans, no-show
Jeff Ludgate 14.5682/66.08 def. Andy Nicholls, no-show
Ali 8.0610/183.62 def. Terry Newton 10.3134/141.68
Mark Moseley 15.5306/54.74 def. Ant Mincher, no-show
Allan Duthie 10.0340/154.17 def. Ali 10.9972/169.19
Matt Davison 10.0642/144.30 def. Dougie Gemmell 23.8107/41.86
Mark Moseley 8.8077/157.38 def. Jack Burn 10.2257/142.59
Jeff Ludgate 21.7379/65.80 def. Ahmed Jamshaid, no-show
Mark Moseley 9.5662/154.16 def. Matt Davison 10.0837/143.92
Jeff Ludgate 20.2659/71.74 def. Allan Duthie, no-show
Mark Moseley 8.7251/156.28 def. Jeff Ludgate 9.3489/156.88
With acknowledgements to Santa Pod Raceway timing crew.
Both finalists were running engines prepared by Mark Moseley's Mark's Xtreme Engines. We were sorry to hear that Gary Gooding in his Toyota Supra suffered a head-on collision with the wall on the launch. Gary said "We think it was caused by water on the right rear tyre from the sills, there were huge amounts of rain the day before and the car sat in 4 inches of water overnight. An oversight on my part which won't happen again. Now I've got to work out how I'm going to fix it. I'm overwhelmed with all the well wishes and love after yesterdays events."
We will be posting a gallery of Kieran's photos from the event in the next day or two, in the meantime you can see the action by going to Santa Pod Raceway's recorded streamed video of the event, and their gallery of Show n' Shine winners at this link. Video of the event taken from the pit side grandstand can be seen at Stones Films Youtube channel.
Malta Round 3 media and results.
4th October: Congratulations to the winners at the October Malta Drag Racing Association Round 3 event at Hal Far Raceway:
Open 6 class: Louis Vella
CA6 class: Anthony Vella
Dragster D4 and D5: Tyson Debono (pictured right © Samuel's Photography)
Open 2 class: Mark Farrugia
SM3 Class: Glenn Caruana Escort Class 2 and 3: Martin Scerri
Extreme 2 Class: Justin Muscat
Outlaw FWD Class: Paul Gatt
Junior Dragster: Luca Mangion Index Class 1: Anthony Vella
Index Class 2: Luke Spiteri
Index Class 3: Rudolph Cortis
Bracket 8.00-8.49: Justin Mizzi
Bracket 9.00-9.49: Victor Felice
Bracket 9.05-9.99: Glenn Caruana
Bracket 10.00-10.49: Catriel Dimech
Bracket 10.50-10.99: Luke Spiteri
Bracket 11.00-11.49: Stanley Muscat
Bracket 11.50-11.99: Warren Gauci
Bracket 12.00-12.49 Neil Caruana
M/Cycle Open Class and Outlaw M/C: Shawn Buttigieg
M/Cycle Index 8.5 and Bracket M/C 8.50-8.99: Leslie Said
You can see recorded video of the event at Motors MT, also video of individual races can be seen at the MDRA Secretary Konrad d'Anastasi's Youtube channel.
You can also see photos at the Facebook pages of DLP Photography and Samuel Mifsud at Samuel's Photography.
4th October: October 2nd saw the Golden Wedding Anniversary of Ron and Jenny Clark, founders of the Midland Drag Racing Association on March 13 1974.
In Ron's words, "I then went on to create Long Marston Raceway and thus became only the third person to establish a brand new dragstrip in the UK – the others being Ted Peddle (Podington Airfield 1965) and Steve Murty (Crossland Moor and later New York dragstrip in 1974). I never dreamed that we would ever reach this rare milestone when we attended my grandparent's 50th in December 1969." Ron and Jenny celebrated quietly on this special day. We wish a happy, if belated, Golden Wedding Anniversary to Ron and Jenny.
Photojournalist David Beitler has posted a report and photos from the Euro Finals Shootout from Santa Pod Raceway which you can see by clicking on this link.
3rd October: We were very sorry to hear from the Warren family that 9.90 and 10.90 Bike racer Ian Warren passed away on Friday. They wrote:
Ian Warren died on the 1st October after a long illness. After many visits to Santa Pod Raceway in the '70s as a spectator and after coming to the 1996 World Finals , Ian decided to start Drag racing.
Ian started racing in 1997 with a Suzuki GSXR named Shy-Tot in the 10.90 bike class and in 1998 Ian won the Super Series Championship and was Runner up in the Santa Pod Championship. Ian moved up to 9.90 bike in 1999 and after a accident at work in 2000, he returned to racing in 2002 and after qualifying No 1 at the National Finals Ian decided to retire from racing himself.
Ian carried on enjoying Drag racing through crewing for both his sons and then watching the racing at the track or through the Web casts when he could.
We send our deepest condolences to Ian's family and friends.
Can Do Marc thankful.
3rd October: Many thanks to Pro ET racer Marc Huxley of Huxley Motorsport for sending us his thoughts on his first full season in the class:
First of all, gotta say what a year it’s been, getting back into the sport of drag racing as a racer. After completing the Can Do Corolla in April I never expected to get anywhere near my goal of top 10, especially in such a challenging class as Pro ET. the car has just been so good, and been improving every single round (apart from the Summer Nats). Building a car from scratch really tested my skills, and I learnt so much along the way. Getting advice from top chassis builder Wayne Allman really helped me believe I could do it and, look, I built a winning car. Making the podium at the Festival of Power really blew me away!
One of the best things that happened this year tho was letting my Dad loose in the car at Dragstaglia and it had to be done, considering it’s a tribute car to the one he raced from 1982-1989. He drove it to its limit and did everything right, it really made me proud but his skill level is still unreal even at his age!
Pro ET has always been a welcoming class but, becoming a driver, it was nice to have the extra welcome and as a class it’s all a team effort with great personalities. This year was extra special really, as not only was I racing alongside the Dark Horse Mustang with dad driving, we had Lee running a borrowed Chevy Nova to become a team of three which was just awesome!
I wanna say a huge thank you to my sponsors that have kept me on track. The main one was ASD Engines, Trevor and Steve Hirst I’d really be stuck without them and their skills. SERCK Motorsport for supporting me and helping with parts and custom work to go faster. Also Dave Gibbons and Tony Morris for their carb setup pushing me finally into the nines (well chuffed).
But I wanna say a special thanks to my team and friends Rich Dance, Andy (Spud), Matt Cutler, Tippers, Rich ‘erm’ Bell and my better half Rhiannon.
I can’t wait to be back in the seat already, and hopefully have more new cars and faces to the class.
Oh, and was so good to see Straight Up playing as a band again in our pits at National Finals.
3rd October: We wish to congratulate British drag bike pioneer and member of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Alf Hagon a very Happy 90th Birthday. Have a great day Alf.
Also Happy Birthday to Super Pro ET racer Saskia Fensome Jell and to former 9.50 Bike racer Andy Haley, we hope you enjoy your special day.
UK Tech Committee meeting.
2nd October: Thanks to to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for letting us know that The Drag Racing Technical Committee will be holding its annual meeting on 28th November 2021 at the Hilton Hotel Northampton.
If you wish to have an item added to the agenda and/or attend the meeting, could you please contact Ian at email@example.com before 19th November 2021.
Once there is a list of delegates, further details regarding start time and travel details to the hotel will be published on Eurodragster.com.
Sywell Classic report and gallery.
2nd October: Thanks to event commentator Jerry Cookson and photographer Darren Skidmore for providing a report and photo gallery of the drag racing action at Sywell Pistons & Props which took place last Sunday 26th September. Jerry writes:
Sywell Airfield hosted a demo Street Car Shootout last Sunday, all the cars ran twice and all put on an exciting, colourful and smoky show which the crowd loved. There was lots of audience participation with many imaginary bets made and lost!
Organised by the Rodfathers UK, the Sywell Classic Pistons & Props was certainly a memorable one for its side-by-side rollin' & smokin' Ford Escort burnouts, '57 'Shoebox' duels, slammin' Pops and high flyin' Fiats from Taz Racing - bring on the next one. The Rodfathers UK would like to thank all the drivers and hard working marshals and helpers who, without them, the show wouldn't have been possible. Many thanks to my partner Ali for pairing up the cars to make for a great show, one of the best seen in a long time.
The track is all concrete and is just shy of an eighth. Once the sun came out and some rubber had been laid it would have made for some great No Prep racing as it was very tacky even though none of the teams were using any traction aids, just water burnouts. The tree was supplied again by Wayne and marshalled by members of the Shakespeare County Relics as were the two startline fire marshals, Andrew Willcox and Dave Bramley.
Although the date was moved so not to clash with the Goodwood Rival the attendance was quite busy on both days with lots watching the the drag racing more than the side-by-side sprint laps from the circuit cars that included an ex James Hunt Marlboro McLaren. Super karts and classic and modern bikes also took to the track for demo runs while the Two Brothers Stunt Team provided the tricks, smoke and rev limiter appeal for the bike fans!
Mark Pacey had his double engined tractor puller on display plus there were Spitfires and Messerschmidt's in mock dog fights, lots of car and bike clubs alongside a mouth watering collection of street rods and classic cars, all made possible by Mark & Louisa Ashman of the Rodfathers UK.
You can check out our gallery of Sywell Classic pictures from Darren Skidmore by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page.
Jerry kindly supplied a list of the racers taking part in the Sywell Classic:
Jerry said "Sunday saw Arron Windridge really get up on the tyres to lay smoldering rubber across the startline with the small block powered Supercharged Outlaw Altered".
Other photo albums of the event can be seen by clicking on these links:
2nd October: MDRA Secretary Konrad D'Anastasi has uploaded video from yesterday's Hal Far practice session preceding this weekend's race which you can see at this link. Another early poster of media from the event is DLP Automotive Photography whose photos you can see at this link.
Live streaming video of the race can be seen at the Motors MT Facebook page which will be live after the commencement of racing on both Saturday and Sunday, 2nd and 3rd October.
NSRA Hot Rod Drags trophy winners.
1st October: Many thanks to Alan Martin from the National Street Rod Association for sending in a full list of trophy winners from the NSRA Hot Rod Drags held at Santa Pod Raceway on 17th-19th September, and some news for those attending the Classic Motor Show at the NEC on 12th-14th November.
The full list of trophy winners for the Hot Rod Drags is as follows:
NSRA Dirty Dozen:
Richard Tunstall, 27 Model T Roadster
Jacqui Kowalewsky, Fiat Topolino
Harley Peters, Model A Coupe
Johnny Best, 34 Roadster
Hayden Mommery, 56 Chrysler Window
Steve Taylor, 61 Mk11 Consul
Sally Woolner, 67 Camaro
Danny Wilson, Mk1 Zephyr
Kenzie Taylor, 100E Prefect (16 years old and first run!)
Laurence MacGillivray, 351 Cleveland Ford Pop
Lauren Moules, Willys Coupe
Colin Wood Jr, Hillman Husky
Most Friday Runs: Andrew Jackson, Triumph Herald Coupe. 10 runs.
Quickest Friday ET: Robin Read, Spirit of Le Patron Daimler Dragster, 6.6579 secs @201.65mph. (Also beating his one record for the fastest Britis engined Dragster over the weekend)
Quickest Outlaw Anglia: Jedd Guy, 6.8864 secs @ 193.85mph. (also taking the honours for the first 6 second Anglia in Europe over the weekend)
Quickest Wild Bunch: Alan Lloyd, Gonzo the Great Topolino, 7.979secs @ 160.75mph
Quickest Supercharged Outlaw: Tony Underhill, Willys Coupe, 7.05 secs @ 191mph
Gasser Circus Quickest Reaction Time: Lee Pike, Honky Tonkin’ II. 0.000secs (a perfect reaction time)
Alan and other NSRA committee members will be attending the Classic Motor Show at the NEC. He said "One of the cars that will appear on the NSRA stand that weekend will be my co-conspirator in organising the Hot Rod Drags for the last 30 odd years, Martyn Payne and his ‘Great Barrbarian’ Outlaw Anglia (pictured right). All told, there will be five cars on the NSRA stand and Martyn’s will be a first for the club to feature a race car."
As well as the NSRA stand, Santa Pod Raceway and Outlaw Anglia will be exhibiting and Modified 100e will be represented on the Ford 100e stand.
We will publish developments for the 2022 Hot Rod Drags and, we hope, Nostalgia Nationals as soon as we know more.
Gasser Circus Hot Rod Drags report.
1st October: Many thanks to Gasser Circus co-ordinator Nick Brooke Langham for a report on the class at the 2021 Hot Rod Drags at Santa Pod Raceway:
The Hot Rod Drags for the Gasser Circus marked the conclusion of our racing season, and it has so far been the event when the winner of the Championship finally emerges. This year it was set to repeat this well warn path, with 3 drivers and their Gassers still in contention. Billy Jones in his ‘Grumpy Grizz’ Willys Coupe, Jason Hollamby in his ‘Jumpin Jalapeno’ Falcon and sitting in the number one spot Nick Barnett in his B&G Racing Falcon. However, a cloud hung over the Gasser Circus as the news filtered out, that Dale Edmonds had passed away earlier in the week. Dale had been a regular in the Gasser pits, supporting and assisting his good friend Ray Turner with Ray’s ‘Green Onions’ 55 Chevy. Dale is renowned in racing circles as he supplied and made so many fibreglass and carbon fibre panels for drag racers, he and his friendship will be sorely missed.
With 20 Gassers on site, Gassers fans were in for a treat with two 55 Chevys, two Austin Devons, an Austin Dorset, two Falcons, a 56 Chevy, two 57 Chevys an Austin Devon pickup, a Chevy Nova, a Morris Van, 33 Willys, 37 Willys, Willys pickup, two Ford Pops a Corvette Stingray and a Dodge Dart. At 9:15 Saturday morning the Gassers were at the end of the fire up road having the privilege of kicking off the weekend. It was a truly heart-warming sight, to look back and see 19 Gassers in the lanes, unfortunately for debutant Adam Kruczynski he was in the lanes but without his superb 55 Chevy ‘Not so Mellow Yellow’, having suffered clutch damage whilst testing the car on Friday's RWYB. Needless to say, he took on the racers mantle despite his setback and was helping other drivers with their Gassers.
First pair up were Tom Margesson in the ‘Tinsel Town Hustler’ Pop, he lined up against Katie Booth in her ‘Mighty Mouse Pop’. The pair signalled their intentions when they both ripped off superb runs with Tom dialling 11:38 and running 11:3814 and Katie dialling 10:43 and stopping the clocks at 10:4376! Tom just taking number 1 qualifier a position he held onto throughout qualifying.
After the first round, most drivers appeared to be suffering the same issues, being slower than they expected. With 19 Gassers and a 16 car ladder, three were going to miss out on Sunday.
At 12:30 just ahead of the second round of qualifying one of the stalwarts of the Gasser Circus ‘Roarin Rat’ was inducted into the NSRA Hall of Fame. The legendary 57 Chevy now under not only the stewardship of Keith Bartlett, but being raced by Keith as he continues where Ken Brookes left off, racing in the Gasser Circus. With the presentations over, it was time for round two of qualifying.
At the conclusion of this Lee pike had a huge smile on his face as he had posted a perfect reaction time 0.0000 in his ‘Honky Tonkin’ 2 Chevy Nova. The 3 Gasser’s not qualified were playing a dangerous game they were me in Nogbad the Bad, Paul Dominey in his 640 Austin Dorset and Martyn Hallam in his 33 Willys Hallam, Hallam & Couch.
Pictures: Round winner Graham Barton, Round Winner Pin from Neil Melliard, Championship winner Nick Barnett, Championship Trophy Bowling Ball from Neill Melliard.
Final qualifying arrived and at its conclusion 2 of the 3 had made it into the final 16 leaving Paul Dominey in his ‘Dorset’ being first alternate sitting at number 17. Behind him was Brian Gibson in his ‘Identity Crisis’ Dodge and Simon Glen in his ‘Straight Shooter’ Austin Pickup.
Being first alternate paid dividends when Keith Bartlett in his ‘Roarin Rat’ 57 Chevy were not going to make eliminations. Paul Dominey was back in. Saturday night brought the Cracklefest and the Gasser Circus were well represented with 5 joining the line-up and along with the other racers they looked awesome. At the conclusion of the Crackle a miscommunication meant that the Gassers arrived at the end of the shutdown area expecting to use the return road, but they could go no further as concrete barriers blocked the way. The cars in the darkness slowly turned around and were soon safely back in their pits! Within these it was also our annual spoof awards, with many drivers, worried about what award they would pick up, some of these involved Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Engine Slayer T shirts, Ker Plunk, a bottle of Guinness, braces, tinsel, a prop shaft and a giant dog!
Sunday arrived and so did a few rain showers which delayed proceedings somewhat, but finally track prep was sorted and Round 1 of Eliminations was good to go. This was where Nick Barnett could place a grip on the championship that would be very hard to dislodge. He was up against Tony Pearson who had a freshly built gearbox in his ‘Guzzler’ 56 Chevy. It bit too hard, too soon and lit the red handing the win to Nick and with that Nick secured the Gasser Circus Championship for 2021.
Ray Irish took on and beat Jason Pickett in his immaculate ‘Cherry Bomb’ 55. Graham Barton won against Steve Mathews in his ‘Honky Tonkin’ 57 Chevy, Sean Milson in his ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’ van red lit against Paul Dominey and Katie Jane Booth in her Pop saw off the still smiling Lee Pike. The other Pop piloted by Tom Margesson took on Mick Allen in his ‘Quick Buck’ Corvette, Tom taking the win on a hole shot. Jason Hollamby took the win against Nervous Nick, Martyn Hallam took the win against Billy Jones. Although at first the win appeared to have gone to Billy, but a glitch with the timing system had incorrectly illuminated the win bulbs in his lane. Therefore, a few minutes after the run there was a swap of emotions in the pits as the news of the error was shared with the drivers. Billy took this in his stride, and Martyn was surprised but ready to move into the next round.
Second Round Eliminations
Jason Hollamby in ‘Jumpin Jalapeno’ was set to race Katie Jane Booth in ‘The Mighty Mouse’ Pop. Jason dialled 10.80 and Katie dialled 10.45. The cars left with green lights on the tree and they headed down the strip together at the top end Katie took the win moving to the semi-finals as Jason had broken out posting a 10.71!
Tom Margesson ‘The Tinsel Town Hustler’ and Graham Barton ‘High Anxiety’ came to the line, Tom with 11.50 on his Pop and Graham with 10.83 on his Austin. In another close race the gantry told the tale of two breakouts with Tom running 11.40 and Graham 11.79. Graham took the win as he broke out by the least. New Gasser Circus Champion Nick Barnett took on Martyn Hallam with the Champ dialling 11.72, Martyn dialled 11.37. Another side by side race followed with Martyn taking the win running perfectly to his dial in with 11.37. On the other side Nick had broken out with an 11.71.
Alternate Paul Dominey in his 640 Austin Dorset, was making the most of his opportunity but was now up against Ray Irish still bedding in his new blown Chevy Motor. Paul dialled 11.84 and ran 11.85, with Ray dialling 10.19 and running 10.22 Ray taking the win by virtue of his reaction time, with him posting a 0.07 to Pauls 0.25.
Pictured: Perpetual Gasser Circus award, Ray Irish and Graham Barton in the fire up road, Lee Pike with his NSRA Award for best reaction time with an 0.000.
Semi Finals had the pairings of Katie Jane Booth against Ray Irish and Graham Barton taking on Martyn Hallam in his 33 Willys, which put a smile on his face as since swapping from a Chevy 383 to a Hemi, he has not had the best of times, as he and his team sought to get it running right.
Katie lost out by the narrowest of margins to Ray as she broke out with a 10:44 on a 10:45 dial in, and Martyn’s Hemi was running too well against Graham Barton in ‘High Anxiety’ with a breakout 11.33 on a 11.37 dial in.
Both drivers were delighted to make their first final especially Ray as he had missed a few rounds whilst sorting out his new blown Chevy motor. Ironically the person in the other lane to Ray was not only a good friend, but it was due to Ray that he was there. A few years ago, Graham came along to crew for Ray and he was almost immediately hooked, saying he wanted to share in the racing and fun that everyone was having. This led to the internet and Racing Junk, where he spotted the High Anxiety Devon Gasser for sale. A couple of clicks later and the deal was done. The rest they say is history.
Both drivers were determined to continue that history and both did strong burnouts, before the edging to the line could begin, with both cars staged the tree activated, Graham had dialled in 10:79 and Ray 10:19.
The cars launched and were side by side, they maintained this along the quarter mile, with it so close neither driver was sure who had taken their maiden win. The gantry told the story of this superb drag race and befitting way to conclude the Gasser season, as Graham had run to his dial in with a 10:79 but Ray had broken out with a 10:19. Graham had taken his first win, back in the pits he was visibly stunned and Ray although disappointed was happy for his friend.
A few minutes later, the Gasser Circus gathered for the trophy presentations, the superb Round Winners pin and prize money from Neil Melliard to Graham, followed by the Championship trophies awarded to Nick Barnett & Hoch of the B&G Racing Team. The Championship Bowling Ball and prize money from Neil Melliard the ball the winner keeps and the Gasser Circus Trophy that the winner keeps for the year.
It was then time to pack the Circus up for another year, and begin to plan its return, when it looks like there will be a few more Gassers joining the growing ranks of those who want to pay tribute to the Gassers from the mid-60s.
Now as the days draw in and the leaves turn to brown before falling, we look back over the year, and it has been quite a journey for all racers, from the point of uncertainty if we will get to race, to the sheer joy and relief of driving up Airfield Road knowing Round 1 was moments away. To then be able to follow this up with another 4 weekends when the Circus came to town has been truly fantastic. This of course would not have happened had it not been for the superb dedication of the Santa Pod team, for which all racers are so grateful. It also wouldn’t happen without the loyalty and support each team receives from family and friends, and our sponsors, Neil Melliard, the National Street Rod Association, Simon Prest and Renegade Fuels.
The Gasser Circus are now preparing and looking forward to 2022, when Gasser’s will once again, thunder down the quartermile, ‘Racing the Dream’.
Modified 100e Challenge expands for 2022.
30th September: Many thanks to Nigel Taylor for bringing us up to speed about the Modified 100e Challenge for 2022:
"The Modified 100e Challenge 2022 campaign is shaping up to be something special! There will be five rounds, dates to be confirmed, and a number of sponsors have already been signed up to whom massive thanks:
Pictured: Scott Collin's new car (the former Paula Atkin car), Dave Mott's Brickyard Shaker built by Zero3 Custom Creations, Scott Collins' current 100e which ran 10.2s at 130mph at the Hot Rod Drags, and Sharon Carver's 100e.
Santa Pod Raceway's main 2022 dates.
30th September: Santa Pod have announced the following provisional 2022 major dates as published in the event programmes for the Euro Finals Shootout and STP UK National Finals:
30th September: As reported in the news last Thursday, the annual Junior Dragster awards from the British Junior Dragster Club, run by Edel McDonald, with the help of husband Graham and son Liam, were presented by Eurodragster.com editor Simon in the JD pits. Edel wrote after the event:
"Thanks to Simon Groves and Eurodragster for their help at the Junior Dragster prize giving in Santa pod at the National Finals (you're welcome - Editor).
"Well done to all the racers and crew that competed this year and we hope to see you all next year. Thanks to PWHouse Rushden with his help with the Trophies, to Ian Marshall for bringing the cups up, also to Jan Mugridge and family for setting up the prize giving and obtaining the Voucher for me."
The following were rewarded:
Best Crew Chief winner Andy Fensome said "I’m very sorry I missed the awards ceremony, I would like to say a massive thank you for everyone that voted for me for the Best Crew Chief, it’s a pleasure to help you all and truly a honour to receive this trophy. I heard the cheering and chanting which was so rewarding in its self, a great class with a lot of future stars keeping the sport going."
Tog's Trophy, presented to those that the former Eurodragster.com editor considers set a fine example in the sport, was awarded to Thomas and Charlotte Cook-Abbott. Tog commented: "It is a great honour and privilege to have a trophy presented in my name to Junior Dragster racers. When I was leading Eurodragster.com I was not allowed to have favourite classes, in public anyway, but I don’t think that it has ever been any secret that I was and am a big fan of Junior Dragster, especially the qualifying sessions most of which kept me very busy typing.
"The first Tog Trophy is awarded to Thomas and Charlotte Cook-Abbott. Thomas has had a long Junior Dragster career during which he has conducted himself with good humour and in a sporting manner, and Charlotte has always been there beside or behind the car supporting her brother. Junior Dragster is the class in which the family aspect is most important and certainly the most visible and Thomas and Charlotte have over the years set a fine example both to fellow racers and to the fans.
"Thomas didn’t remember this when I mentioned it to him but he should also get a trophy for sheer cheek because during his licencing weekend he approached me whilst I was eating lunch to ask for sponsorship – he got it, too - whilst Charlotte deserves a trophy for tolerating Thomas’ outrageous insults on Facebook.
"It is great to see Thomas and Charlotte already preparing for the future crewing with other teams and setting themselves up for what I am sure will be years of contribution to the sport. But for now they are very worthy winners of the Tog Trophy.
"I cannot be there to present the trophy in person but I am grateful to my good friend Simon for standing in. Thanks also to Graham and the McDonald family for the honour which they have shown me."
Many thanks to Edel, Graham and Liam for organising the trophy celebration and we hope to see them back at the track in 2022.
Photo courtesy and © Andy Willsheer.
The generation game, part two.
30th September: In our news back on 31st August, we said that the Hope family are the first in British Drag Racing in our knowledge to have three generations of event winners, although three generations of the Coulsell and Fulton families have also competed.
Many thanks to Nici Fulton for writing in and confirming, with a photo of his trophy, that dad Richard Fulton as well as sons Dave and Simon, and grandson Luke, have each been not just event champions, but overall championship winners.
Nici wrote: "I've been on at the old man to jog his memory about his winnings...I know there were some, as I was the kid at school who was 'different' and brought in drag racing trophies for show and tell when I was 8 years old!
"Dad actually won a whole championship back in 1984 in his blue Firebird, the NDRC Street championship. So I'm guessing we could be the only family where three generations have won a championship?"
JT's end of season report.
30th September: Sometimes the best laid plans or years don’t work out. Man, we tried hard, but oil problems beat the blue car up all year (Nigel, Frank and Ricky were incredible).
The white car is strange, it only loves the cold air. Luke Robinson was amazing, especially at the last two meetings trying to run two pro mods. On the Euro Finals Friday, we broke a con rod past the finish line, in the bumps. The strange thing is a year ago, to the Friday, we threw the rods in the Pop. Con Rod Friday.
Still, not to be deterred, I am still planning on two new cars. A massive thanks to Keith and the whole Santa Pod team, they are amazing. Easter for a test, and then I am already counting the days to the Door Slammers. A very quick shout to ICE , Kev Slyfield, Kath who scares me in the signing on, Simon Eurodragster an amazing job (you're welcome - Editor). And Tracy Island, with tarn, popped up for a return they stuck with me through all those rain offs. Be safe, JT.
30th September: Today we wish a Happy Birthday to several racers around the world. Starting with the UK, Many Happy Returns to VW Sportsman racer Morgan Wilson, to Funny Bike owner and Top Fuel Bike racer-in-waiting Phil Crossley, then across to Sweden with Grattis to Anders Magnusson and lastly to South Africa to greet former AA/FD pilot and pioneer in the sport in that country Arthur Christy. Have a great day folks!
Photojournalist Steve Moxley's report on the senior ACU bike classes at the Euro Finals Shootout is posted on the ACU web site and is well worth a read for Steve's usual insight into the racing and great photos.
The Junior Drag Bike Club has launched a great new web site giving profiles of current riders, the roles of those running the class, and contact details. The site address is juniordragbikeclub.com.
The Mad Welshman has updated his Flickr page with photos rom the Doorslammers, alongside a smaller VW Action Show N Shine album, and also a large album from the Hot Rod Drags. Mad says "We're hoping to get to Melbourne next weekend for what may be our last drag racing event of the year, although I have seen that they may be adding one final event there at the end of October too!"
Comments on Hal Far development.
29th September: Many thanks to Malta Motorsport Federation President and 2017 FIA Top Fuel Champion Duncan Micallef for his exclusive comments for Eurodragster.com on the planned £17 million development of Hal Far Raceway in Malta, including a major upgrade of the drag racing facility:
"It has been a hard working 10 months since I was elected as a President of the Malta Motorsport Federation.
I wasn't prepared to give all this amount of time to this project, but once I saw a ray of light and what has happened after 50 years of waiting, I gave it all that it needed.
"I never knew this would happen. It wasn't an easy task. Asking for that amount of land on this Island is like entering a bank and asking to steal it. I knew the limits of the government and in February I gave my proposal which in my opinion was now or never.
"From that day onwards the government worked hand in hand with us to make this work.
"I with my other members of the committee, Oliver Attard, William England, Jonathan Bruno and Rueben Galea are very proud to have this project accepted by the government putting motorsports into the next level which I presume to be the highest level possible. From here I will be working with all the clubs to have the first European championship karting race here.
"I wish to send another message to the drag guys: I didn't quit, I will be racing in November at Hal Far and will prepare for 2022!"
Jean Todt, president of FIA, commented by video: "Today we celebrate the inauguration of the Malta Motorsport Park in Hal Far. I would like to thank the Maltese Government with special mention to Prime Minister Robert Albila and Parliamentary Secretary for Sport Clifton Grima. Thank you also to Duncan Micallef, the President of the Malta Motorsport Federation and his team for their long-term effort and his achievement, that is a great day.
Malta's drivers will have the facilities to train and improve their performance. More athletes will just venture into the international scene. You can count on the support of the FIA for the next phases of your project especially in the homologation process of three venues, circuit, drag strip and karting track. I wish this park a long and happy life and look forward to international motorsport visiting Malta in the future. That's what we all need and we have all been working for that and the day has come. Thank you and congratulations."
Image: Freehour Malta Facebook page.
Bike class racer comments from UK National Finals.
29th September: We present below comments (in some cases edited for length) from bike class racers following their successes at the STP UK National Finals:
In Top Fuel Bike, the win and the championship went to the legendary Steve Woollatt (below left). It’s British Drag Racing Hall of Fame member Steve's 31st championship overall and congratulations to him. In the final Steve who ran opposed when opposition Al Smith (below right) red lit.
Al's performance had a big boost at the National Finals. PBR Rocket owner and engineer Phil Baimbridge wrote in his excellent Facebook page:
"With the cylinder head repaired and the Rocket rebuilt the PBR team headed to the UK National Finals, our last event of 2021. The weather forecast was surprisingly good for late September in the UK. The TFB national championship was up for grabs with all three entrants in with a shout of winning the #1 plate.
"The team for this event were Al & Joo Smith, Neill Curtis, Andy Kirk and I. We weren’t sure if the cylinder head repair would work and we needed track time, so we elected to enter the pre-event test day."
Phil described the run as "a bit sedate" (shut down at 5 seconds and an ET 6.89s). The control air valve had closed itself just after the launch and with the much lower fuel flow throughout the pass the cylinders had started misfiring before half track. The team removed the control air shut off valve from the system and the bike ran a 6.45, better but not as good as expected as the misfire had returned.
Overnight. the team tore down the engine, measured leakdown, changed a rod and replaced the big end shells. The team also installed a 1 tooth smaller blower pulley and a 90 degree inlet that Al had fabricated, increasing the fuel flow as well. The result in Q1 was immense, Al enacting the “if you’re going quicker than you ever have, keep it open” clause and keeping the throttle open all the way to the finish to post 6.012/228.9, which was below the existing ACU record and also with no damage. With an identical setup and shifted only 0.2s earlier Al ran 6.09/225.9mph in Q2, however not enough to back up the time for a new record.
On Saturday night, with one bent rod and another suspect, the team changed both and installed a fresh block and pistons. On the bye in round one of eliminations the team decided to just launch, shift and shut down in E1 and save the motor for the final. (Al did exactly this and even with the throttle only fully open for 0.7s the Rocket still ran a 1.03s 60’!).
The Rocket was set the same as Q1 for the final against good friend Steve Woollatt, whose PBR "4 banger" had been running consistent 6.1s or 6.2s. "We had to win the final or set the UK national record for et or terminal speed to take the #1 plate. In the event Al “cherried” and we lost the race. We didn’t get a time, but looking at the Racepak Data I would guess a low “teen” if Al had run the whole quarter. Congratulations to Steve and the Woollatt Racing team for their UK national championship."
Phil admitted he was "Really pleased with the progress", proven the concept and design/engineering, found a set up which avoids the motor badly hurting itself. The 6.01 puts the Al and the Rocket #18 on the all time “quickest” list or 15th if the bikes that appear twice with different pilots are discounted...and it was built in a wooden shed in rural Herefordshire!
Upgrades are planned to the ignition system (we still use points type magnetos that are around half the spark energy of a ProMag44) and fuel flow control (the AMS2000 isn’t quite up to the task) for next season.
Phil thanks the regular team of Al & Joo Smith, Neill Curtis and Andy Kirk, sponsors Burlow Engineering, FIE, APE and B&J Racing transmissions and other racers who have helped out this year, Santa Pod/SPRC for providing such an excellent venue to run at, Banks Night Club for sponsoring the UK TFB championship and all of the Rocket’s supporters at the track, on Facebook and other forums.
In Funny Bike you can read the Intwined blog posted on behalf of Warpspeed Racing to see the story behind 2021 ACU Champion Stuart Crane and Mark Smith's event:
"Round 1 of the qualifiers, Stuart Crane and Mark Smith (below left, Mike Kraaij picture) aka Smithy, were up against each other. It was an all round good race with no breakages. Smithy had shift issues but nothing major. Stuart took the win with an impressive 6.62 seconds at 196.19 mph. Smithy wasn’t far behind running a 7.21 second run at 178.52 mph. Both bikes were in one piece and after normal maintenance they were ready for the round two qualifiers.
"Round two unfortunately went a little 'Pete Tong'. Stuart ran a bye but broke at about 100ft out, resulting in a broken clutch basket gear, which exploded through the engine casing and the carbon body, hitting Stuart in the chest. Thank goodness he was fine, the bike not so and the end of the meet for him unfortunately.
"Smithy’s launch was ok but the bike pulled left. He then had transmission issues which resulted in him shutting off the throttle and rolling through. He ran a 7.92seconds at 145.34mph. After checking over the bike, the shift shaft, shift forks and the gear input shaft were all damaged, resulting in our fantastic team spending the rest of the day, right round to 4am mending the bike and fitting the new “Warpspeed Racing” billet hurricane head. They worked their socks off so Smithy could get out for the first eliminations.
"Smithy was up against Roger Moore. As you can see below Roger had a good reaction time of 0.2900. Smithy was a tad slower off the line, with a reaction time of 0.52. The bike shifted left again. Smithy pulled it back and took the win with 7.45seconds at 154mph. However the exhaust fell off about half track, thankfully no damage was done. With a quick turn around, the Warpspeed Racing team, headed to the semifinals. Smithy was up against Tony Clark.
I’m gutted to say that the bike died on the line and the meet was over. As the season came to an end, we look back with mixed emotions. It’s been an up and down season, that’s for sure. Lots was learnt, money was spent, new personal bests were made and records were broken (well done Stuart).
"Even with more breakages than we would like, it’s still been an awesome season racing, where memories were made with the best of friends.
"The Warpspeed Racing team has come on leaps and bounds over the last few years and we will be back next year, stronger and faster than ever. We also welcome back teammate, Dale Leeks, making Warpspeed Racing a three bike team once again. Welcome back Dale, we are looking forward to seeing what you pull out the hat also seeing your new swanky race truck.
"We would like to say Thank you to all our sponsors and continued support at the track. A huge thank you to Stuart Crane proprietor of Warpspeed Racing, for your sponsorship and going above and beyond to make the season as successful as possible. We really appreciate everything you have done this season."
Super Street Bike was once again dominated by 2021 Champion Steve Venables who confirmed his champion with a #1 qualifying position, but then went and completed the deal by winning the event against Alan Morrison Jnr who was runner up in the championship.
In qualifying Alex Hope ran his best ever times of 7.011/204 and Mark Hope (above right) also qualified strongly with a 7.186/205 and Mark wrote after the event:
"The final race of the year was a bit of a roller coaster! We managed to qualify 6th with a 7.18 at 205mph (never thought I'd be disappointed running those numbers) but it was becoming frustrating not being able to progress and chip the ET down.
"So we made some changes, resulting in a few good high speed wheelies, as we searched for the limits. We sure didn't struggle for traction this weekend! In the last qualifying session Alex ran a stunning 7.01 to overcome all the issues and bad luck him and his crew have suffered this year, those runs, are what make all the effort worthwhile.
"E1 saw us face off against Alex, who unfortunately had a clutch switch failure, pulling him through the tree to hand me the win. E2 the bike left clean and felt like it was on a good pass with good short numbers but didn't want to shift into 3rd. I ran 7.37 to Alan Morrison Junior's 7.31 with a close race at the top end.
"We're still tying to figure this thing out, but I feel closer now than ever! Thanks to the following guys for their continued support: Nimbus Motorsport, WSC-Performance, Ramair Filters NGK Spark Plugs (UK), RPS Manufacturing (the new shock is working a treat, and offers a lot of adjustability!), and Steve Nichols - Maxx ECU."
In Comp Bike, Jeff Kenway wrote about son Jordan Kenway (below left) who came fourth in the championship in his first race season in the class: "It has been one of the hardest but most rewarding since we started racing. The goal was to get Jordan’s license to complete in comp bike and run an eight he certainly did that got into two finals and came so close to running a seven. It’s a shame we did quite a bit of damage to the bike at the last meeting, a plan is already in place to fix the bike and make it stronger for next year. I would like to thank the usual suspects Jake Mechaell, Stuart Crane, Mark Hope and Simon Holgate for all their help, NGK spark plugs UK who have supported us since he started racing at thirteen and Alex Clark from Renegade for meeting me at stupid o’clock at motorway services so we had enough race fuel finally HEL performance when you go quick you have to be able to stop their brake lines are the best. I would like to also thank all the Santa Pod crew who give up their time so we can race in safety hopefully we will see you all next year."
In 9.50 Bike, Craig Wright (below right) wrote after becoming championship runner up: "It just wasn't meant to be this year. We finished 2021 as 9.50 Bike UK/National runners up, a tough one to swallow after leading it all year right up until tonight's Final, but Richard Sawatzki bought his absolute A game today and bagged his 9th Championship. He REALLY is the man, massive congrats to him, and an honour to shake that fella's hand after our scrap. Cheers all, your messages of support have been mega, thanks so much. What next....we shall see."
9.50 Bike racer Brad Head wrote: "2021 season done and dusted! Another great weekend had at the national finals! The weekend started well for my self taking the number 1 qualifier in round 1 then running a 9.508 in qualifier number 2 my first 9.50! Unfortunately Martin Hallett snatched the number 1 away from me in the last qualifier and took the bye in first round! Which left me to face Richard Sawatzki in round one, a very close race which Rich won by .03 at the stripe he was in a different league on race day this weekend! Congratulations on your 9th championship Rich been great racing with u this year ! Very happy with how this year went it was all about regaining some confidence and getting track time all of which we did so very excited to have my own bike out in 8.50 next year ! Thanks to everyone that has helped me get to this point and most importantly to Andy Head for the use of his bike it really is a great bike to ride hopefully he can put it to use next year! bring on next year!"
ET Bike had the 2021 Champion Phil Pratt and Runner-Up Paul Adams (below left) face off in the Final. Suze Morris wrote:
"The No.1 and No.2 side by side with, purely by chance, identical dial-ins. An entertaining race, with Phil spinning all the way through 1st gear and Paul rolling the throttle after a cheeky peek over his shoulder! Congratulations to Paul on the event win and to EVERYONE on a fantastic 2021 season! So... who's up for doing it all over again in 2022?"
Junior Drag Bike champion Hollie King (above right) had "an absolute blinder of a weekend" as described by brother Blade.
Hollie wrote: "My first season as a junior drag bike racer is done and I won the ACU and Santa Pod championships. I've had the best time racing and loved racing against everyone. I can't wait for next year with some new juniors joining and riding my new bike. Thanks to Jack Shook for giving me the bike.
"I'd like to say a massive thank you to Simon Holgate of Holgate engineering for building my bike, rukus customs for the most amazing body work. Bill, Kye, Blade, Nan and Grandad for being my pit, crew and most importantly my mum and dad for supporting me to race.
"Also to everyone who sponsored the juniors with prize money, it's very much appreciated. Thank you to everyone for your support it means a lot."
For a selection of media posted after the events please head towards the following links as well as our coverage:
29th September: Photojournalist Mark Gredzinski of Accurate Dragster Publishing says that work continues to progress on his photographic account of 1980s UK and European drag racing:
"Just finished scanning around 5000 photos from negatives/slides and am wielding the scythe of quality, to slash them down to around 250 images to realistically put in the book. Too many is a crowd! Editing is enjoyable but leaving stuff out is hard. I always imagine their will be a fictitious volume 2 the remainder go in, so I don't feel so bad!
"The contents of the book will cover the period 1980 to 1989 in drag racing terms. The decade was actually unrepresented in many ways and was largely ingnored by the media. Much of what happened was not well documented and many of the cars/bikes forgotten about. My approach to the book is to do it much as I did when writing my well received photographic truck book, Midnight Movers. That is to say it will have a personal narrative which will highlight my journey from being a humble fan to being involved in the sport.
"This covered journalism, photography, design work, and crewing on a blown methanol dragster, Top Fuel and Funny cars. There are plenty of insider photos and pics of people. Stories that have not been illustrated before. Pictures from the Pod, Long Marston, Bitteswell, Valencia. Blackbushe, Zandvoort and North Weald and various garages!. I'm hoping to have it out by Christmas and it will be available from my secure website. Enclosed is a shot of consideration but it won't make the final edit, since I have better.
"It won't be all Funny Cars. That will have to wait for my planned Funny Car book but that is a year away. There is another truck book to do in the meantime. Some of the pictures will be surprising and 99 percent of them have never been seen before."
£17m investment for Hal Far motorsport.
28th September: When we reported that a meeting of the Malta Drag Racing Association with Clifton Grima, Parliamentary Secretary for Youth Sports and Voluntary Organisations in Malta, was to take place last Friday, we sensed a major announcement was in the offing.
Yesterday morning it was announced in The Times of Malta that the government is to build a long-awaited racetrack in Ħal Far.
In a press conference on Monday morning, Malta Prime Minister Robert Abela said the €20 million (£17m) project would be built around similar, existing facilities in Ħal Far and would not take up any ODZ (Outside Development Zone) land.
“The racing sport has waited for long enough, and it is time to deliver on our promise,” Abela said. “We have the plans and money for it, and designs will be published soon.” He said the track has been designed by German professionals and will be built away from residential areas in Birzebbuġa.
It will be funded through the sale of Maltese passports to wealthy investors, with the money required to be build it being provided by the National Development and Social Fund. The NDSF is tasked with investing a portion of money earned through passport sales.
Malta Motorsport Federation president Duncan Micallef teared up at the announcement, saying the news was like a dream come true. “I had to look at my watch to make sure I’m not sleeping and dreaming,” he told the prime minister and Sports junior minister Clifton Grima. “Thank you so much for making our dream come true.”
Grima said that the plan is to upgrade existing drag racing and karting facilities while also building a racetrack close to them. He also hinted that an international racing event has already been committed to Malta. The federation has been lobbying for the racetrack for a long time and a track was one of Labour's electoral promises ahead of the 2017 election. But motoring enthusiasts' plans appeared to have been dashed in 2019, when their proposal for such a track was shot down by the government.
In a reaction, (PN) Nationalist Party leader Bernard Grech said the project was revived on the eve of a general election after having been shelved for years by the present government. He spoke on the need for the project a few days ago. He said the PN was committed to building such a track and would not deceive motorsport enthusiasts.
With acknowledgements to Mark Laurence Zammit and The Times of Malta.
Editor's comment: despite the party political wranglings in connection with such announcements, this is the most positive indication we can remember that major development of the Hal Far facility will take place – and 2017 FIA Top Fuel Champion Duncan Micallef, the 'Maltese Lion' is the ideal person to ensure the plans for an international standard track become reality.
28th September: We are sad to report the death of UK drag racer, crewman and engineer Vince Shaw, who worked for several teams but was known to many at Shakespeare County and Santa Pod Raceway.
Vince worked at Toolcraft in the 1970s making tooling for Jet clamps but also producing items such as throttle linkages, clutch components and other parts. The teams he supplied parts for were legion: Gleadow Bros, Dorset Horn, Fire Injun, Doug Bond with Martyn Hannis and Jim Seward were included on his customer list.
He was involved in running several cars over the years. Vince ran Mexico Mouse which was previously Rick Fielding's Imagination 6, with John Gibbons and Pete Ward. He then acquired Alkymist (the former Tudor Rose, co-owned with John Gibbons replaced by a rear engined car of the same name in 1979, utilising an injected 5 litre SBC with a rare set of Pete Jackson injectors). He was a member of the Midland Drag Racing Club and was 1977 Midland Champion with John. After Alkymist, Vince and John ran a Rover engined T bodied altered.
Latterly he worked with Norm Wheeldon on his cars, including the Two Much twin engined slingshot, and Nick Stephenson's Corvette which ran infrequently but usually very quickly, at Avon Park/SCR. His hands-on approach was reflected in his oft-quoted saying "You don't sort a car by running past it with a new set of spanners".
As well as racing, Vince was into model boats, showing an interest in the engineering side as well as running them. Suffering from cancer, in his final few days Vince watched live streams of Santa Pod Raceway from his hospital bed before he slipped away. We send our deepest condolences to Vince's daughter Sam Whitehall, his family, friends and team-mates.
Nick Stephenson photo © Tog.
Car class racer comments from UK National Finals.
28th September: We present below comments (in some cases edited for length) from car class racers following their successes at the STP UK National Finals:
Eurodragster.com sponsors Robinson Race Cars, whilst still in testing mode with their Anger Management 2.0 Camaro, showed delight at the Robinson-built Blown Bird team and driver Kev Slyfield (pictured left) regaining the Motorsport UK Pro Modified championship he had last won in 2015, and winning the event: "A huge well done to Kev Slyfield and the Blown Bird Drag Racing team for winning the Motorsport UK championship which went right down to the semi finals of the event! Also well done to all the other Motorsport UK Pro Mod competitors, everyone did great this weekend, and put on an amazing show."
"This weekend we achieved a lot, we made 2 full passes, a 6.12 and a 6.23, and also recorded a great speed of 237 mph. This bodes really well as the data shows that our engine and fuel system combination is in the ballpark. We have a good baseline to work from to start our 2022 season."
Harrison Brown made his class debut in the Thatadoo Super Pro ET Camaro, formerly raced in Pro Modified by Gordon Appleton, which he said he once sat in as a nipper:
"After breaking the car in the burnout on my 2nd test pass during Friday’s test day, then thinking that our season for this year was just set out to be cursed with breakages, we decided we weren’t going to give up. So we set about finding the issue and cracked on till the early hours to get the car ready for qualifying on Saturday. With amazing efforts from all the team we managed to get it up and running again. I am eternally grateful to my team for all their hard work, as it was the next pass I made that I ran my first 7".
Super crew Jim Massey started on Mark Bailey's Super Pro ET team, Mark running a new PB 8.67, but changed teams when Mark suffered a first round loss: "What a great weekend, had a brilliant time with Mark Bailey, Jane and Paul, who I crewed for, thanks for your hospitality after Mark went out In the first round, I jumped ship to Billy Gane to do the dial-ins to free up Alex Gordon, Alex had done a brilliant job qualifying Bill in 3rd and all season been on top of his game.
"The only chance Bill had to win the championship was for Giles and Hartley and Ron Bartlett to go out early, which they both did, and for us to win the final. Well we managed to get to the final against Alan Didwell in a very close race ,both drivers pulling 0.02 lights and both 2 hundreds off their index, but we lost by 13 thousands. Great race, well done Alan.
"Bit gutted especially for Bill who has driven brilliantly all season. Finally just like to say thanks to Bill and Dave Gane, Alex, Dion Hartley, Alfie Wratten, Terry Wratten and Felicity Gibbs for all the laughs and help and for letting me help in my mind the best Super Pro and bracket team there is (apart from the Herbs of course). Great end to the season ,but watch out next year because we will be back to have another crack at it."
Pro ET Champion Lee Huxley, winning his first individual championship, previous championships being under the Dark Horse Racing banner said: "Ok my turn for some Drag Racing spam. I only went and won the championship!. What an amazing season and a great finale with a completely different car than I’m used to. I have so many people to thank so here goes:
"Firstly I thank my wife and kids for always being supportive To the rest of my family for their encouragement and kind words. Thanks especially to my dad for towing the Nova to and from every race meeting. To Neil Bell for trusting me with his beautiful 66 Chevrolet Nova with its awesome Jeff Bull Race Engines power plant. Crew chief Richard Bell for the technical support and to all our other crew members. They know who they are. To all our very loyal sponsors for 2021 season and many previous years support.
"Thanks to all the Santa Pod staff for all their hard work especially Darren Prentice for all your help and Angie Daly for always being there at the end with a smile and a clap. Thanks to all in Pro ET! Toppo’s Tenners, Bad Habit awards and to everyone’s posts of congratulations! Loved 2021. Roll on 2022. Watch this space."
Sportsman ET double champion Dan Holloway hinted that after two SPRC National Championships it is time for him to step up:
"Back to back National Champion in Sportsman ET! Made a few mistakes this year, learnt more than I ever have, came out a more experienced racer for it. No expectations coming into the National Finals, but just managed to do enough on the day Also one proud boyfriend of Holley for making her second final in as many events Sportsman better watch out next year!
"Truck Norris will be semi retiring from the race track for now, will get some TLC and well earned rest! He threw me a few curveballs this year, but ultimately did me proud when it counted. What a cracking little truck. As for me, my current plans are to step up a class or two next year, providing all goes to plan over the winter.
Super Comp champion Leah Kellett was typically enthusiastic about her victory in the race and her second SPRC National championship:
"What a great end to a fantastic season! After a collaboration of red lights and a break out in the last three event finals, I was determined to give it my absolute best I could this weekend, to end the season on a high and boy did I!
"I managed to seal the championship, have a heads up race with my bro for the first time, and have that green light final I had hoped for, the bonus of that was then followed by taking the event win too! I was absolutely over the moon!
"So chuffed to bits for Steven Hudson taking the runner up in the championship and meeting me in the final this weekend! What a bloody awesome race that was! Well done Steve! #nothrottlestop.
"Got to say a massive thank you to SPRC, Keith, all the marshals, All the awesome track crew, Ian Marshall and David Warren for all the hard work and dedication this year, for managing to give us a terrific full season, starting half way through the year due to the pandemic! Absolutely outstanding guys thank you so much!
"Thank you to my absolute Dream Team making all of this happen, Pete Kellett - The Chief, for our awesome rides, the transporting and all the prepping etc that goes with it, Billy Everitt Co-Crew chief for absolutely nailing the lot! Spencer Tramm for all the continued support and help as always smashing it! My stand in crew men, John Prz and Jordan Wilson for being absolutely fabulous. To the awesome Jeff Bull @ Jeff Bull Race Engines and Belinda Bull for all the continued support for me and bro as always, believing in us and giving us one hell of some cool rides! To my girl power pal Laura Grace Turburville-Wilson for the absolute best support as always, for my card and gifts of achievement this weekend making it that extra special, and just always being there.
"Thank you to my amazing class mates for all their help and support as always! So lucky to race with such lovely people willing to help even though we become opponents on the track, its all about helping one another get us there! Loved having the Wild Bunch guys with us! So awesome to race you guys! And great to have newbie Scud (Allan Schofield) and crew with us too! Lets keep Super Comp alive and kicking and having fun!
"Last but not least, thank you to everyone for all the support given all year and to the photographers for capturing all the amazing moments.
"Well done to my bro for smashing it this weekend! And to everyone who gave it their all to fight for their championships and put on a great show! Well done to all on your wins! Have a lovely winter, and look forward to seeing you all again next year! Lots of love – Dolly.
Super Gas champion Andy Harrison won not just the championship but also the Perfect Light Award:
"I've had an amazing year but couldn’t have done it without my fantastic crew, this was most defiantly a team win. Crew chief and Mr Numbers Ian Hart, chute girl, videographer and definitely the better looking member of the team Zoe Sparrow, motivator, mentor and towing services Paul Brown, evening banter and general entertainment Ruaridh Hart, and my family Rachel Harrison, Emily Harrison, Bethany Harrison, for all the love and support. You guys and indeed all the Super Gas family, you all mean the world to me and I love you all. Santa Pod you and all the staff have been amazing and I thank you so much".
Despite the disappointment of an uncontested final when Mark Coulsell had a rare stage foul on a semi final bye, Wild Bunch racer Pete Brown was delighted at doubling up his Roy Wilding Championship with the SPRC Club Championship run at MSUK permit events: "Would just like to say THANK YOU! to each of you for the messages of congratulations after the weekends event, it's still in the "did it really happen" stage.
"Although the final was lop sided (just me) I would like to congratulate all the other teams who were in the running, each tried just as hard as the other and each was a formidable opponent and great competitor with laughs along the way. Well done to all in the Wild Bunch too, what a great season with ups and downs but thankfully more ups!! Well done to you all!
"All the staff and crews at Santa Pod a well done and thank you for all the hard work that has been done and being done, a great crew. VW Pro Champion James Hodson said " I won my first round which means I am VW Pro Champion for the 7th time. Thanks to Jason Noel for crewing and to the rest of the VWDRC. Commiserations to Adrian Solly, a fine competitor".
VW Pro racer Graham Fairhead had some issues over the season, however finished third in the standings: We still had gear change issues but massive thanks to Jim Bowen for delivering fresh parts Sunday morning and with issues still, Graham managed to get to the semi finals and ended the year in 3rd place. Given our range of issues this year and not doing all the rounds we're well happy with that result, now planning has started for next season.
VW Pro racer Paul Jackson drove his Il Pirätä Lupo to the car's first nine and wanted to thank those who helped him: "Another PB 9.881 @ 143.88. Il Pirata is the quickest and fastest Loopy Loop in the UK. Huge thanks to Chris and Sambo for all the help/effort/encouragement/p*ss taking, couldn’t have done it without you guys. And as always, thank you to everyone in the VWDRC and at Volks Workshop and Pro-Race Engineering."
Junior Dragster racer Mackenzie Love had a ball at the event as well and gave a great description of his thoughts through his race weekend: "Well what can I say! What a weekend. Quite literally. The car has just been top form this weekend and coming home all in 1 piece. She got me qualified 5th with my first double 0 reaction time in about a year and since I've had lots of new things done to the race car. 0.0098. Then I move on to Sunday eliminations day and, wow, the match ups throughout the day were probably the best match ups I've ever seen since been in juniors for 3 years. It was just great!
"We had Lola-Belle Kent round 1 and we dial in a nice 8.36 and go 8.46 with a decent lift. And we take the win. Round 2 we had Jake Cooper, another junior stock. I had to wait on the startline and get chasing, we dialled in an 8.30 on the dot as the sun was shining and heat was getting to the track and the wind was slowly going away. So we knew we were gonna go fast. I pull a safe 0.10 and another decent lift and go 8.41 on an 8.30. And we take the round 2 win and proceed once again to our 2nd quarter final of the year, the 5th one in total.
"Coming back from round 2, I instantly hear I have Mr Cook Abbott. Not gonna lie, my heart sunk to my ass. As I know, Tom is a good racer and is not an easy get around. Tom dials 8.14 and is on the money with a nice 0.0750 light. But it gets better... Out of nowhere I pull a 0.0014 light on the tree, and was 8.34 on a 8.31. (slight feather on the throttle). So it was all down to reaction times as we were decent on our dial in's. Obviously I had the advantage by a mile and I take the win. Obviously I felt really bad taking out Tom to a short ish weekend as it was his last meeting in juniors. I jumped out the race car at the top end and we congratulated each other and had a good chat.
"Then I'm going down into the pairing lanes for my first ever semi finals after 3 years of nothing but problems with the race car! At this point I wasn't bothered what was going to be the result as making the semi final was an achievement in itself. I still gave it all I had to try and get a spot in the final but it just wasn't meant to be on that run. Luke Fulton was dead on the money 8.33 on a 8.33 dial and a sharp 0.040 light to my 0.046. 8.31 dial for me again and a slight feather resulted a 8.37.
"If only I had cut a better light and not feathered it I would have won the race with a tight win margin, gone through to the final and faced Caitlin Wilson where she broke out and I would have taken my first event win but hey! There's always next time.
"Now to look forward to Flame and Thunder and doing some winter upgrades and getting ready for next season. Massive thankyou to Colin Theobald for great commentary all weekend and to all the Santa Pod track crew for making us have the best prepped racetrack to race on for our last championship points round of the year. Amazing weekend over all and I will catch you all soon.
Also coming home with 2 awards, Most enthusiastic sportsman in JMA, and the Half Scale Cup trophy with an additional $100 to spend with Half Scale. Also coming home with am immense pb reaction time of 0.0014. That triple 0 is soon coming.
Finally a farewell to those leaving the Junior Dragster class at the end of the season. Mark Cook Abbott, dad of Thomas, wrote: "It's farewell to Team Tominator as they leave Junior Dragster, this weekend was their swan song. 10 years in Junior Dragster came to an end on Sunday. They will be moving into a new class in the 2022 season and we'll announce more information later." Farewell from the class also to Caitlin Wilson, Harley Jay Darby and Frankie Taylor who left after two rounds and has a new Pro ET car in the works.
Starting 'em young.
28th September: Many thanks to photojournalist Andy Willsheer who snapped this photo of a pair of Top Fuel racers and their new offspring:
Among vistors to the Pod at the weekend were Top Fuel standouts Liam Jones and Norwegian partner Maja Udtian, along with four-week-old daughter Matilda. The two drivers from the straight-line sport's premier class were cruising the pits and enjoying a a laid-back Saturday with their newest addition to the ranks of future Jr. Dragster pilots. Liam said that there are currently no plans for the pair to return to competition in 2022, but may well have something in mind for the 2023 season. Watch this space...
Mr D Slot Drag Racing restarts.
28th September: Steven Dudley (MrD), owner and manager of the MrD Slot Drag Racing track, a 1/24th scale 1000ft, fully timed slot racing facility says he plans to reopen his facility during the off season in the UK.
"I run 2 meetings a month over the winter season. I've recently asked locally if someone could come along and video (livestream maybe) and take pit photos. "The first race meeting is this Friday 1st October at Cathedral Primary School, Victoria Road, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 1PA. The entrance to the school is just opposite where the Royal Mail Sorting Office used to be on Victoria Road, near Riverside Ice and Leisure. There is a small car park in the school grounds, please park carefully as it is very narrow. If full please park in side road opposite the school.
"I have loan cars for anyone wanting to try out this exciting form of slot car racing. We run Elimination races during the evening, for added tension, as well as the Gasser Circus Championship, see the MrD Slot Drag Racing Facebook page for full details. Race fee is the usual £5 for the evening, with accompanied under 16's free.
It's great fun, come and have a go, the track opens at around 7.30pm, with Elimination races starting at 8.15pm. Hope to see you there.
If you can't make this Friday, there will be a full length (6 hours) event on Sunday 10th October 2021, at Brentwood RC Raceway Unit K1 Frieze Hall Farm Coxtie Green Road Brentwood Essex CM14 5RE. Action will include MrD Crazy Horse and Outlaw Elimination races as well as the MrD Gasser Circus and starts at 11am with the first race around midday.
A sample of the action can be seen at this link.
2022 SPRC Dinner Dance.
27th September: Santa Pod Racers Club are pleased to announce that their 2022 Dinner Dance Trophy Presentation Evening, to congratulate the 2021 season winners and runners up, will take place at the Mercure Centre Hotel Bedford, 2 St Mary’s Street, Bedford, MK42 0AR (for map click here) on Saturday, 29 January 2022.
The arrangements are as follows:
Please be seated by 18.45. Proceedings will start prompt at 19.00 pm with presentations for the SPRC Bike and Car Championships followed by dinner at 19.15.
After dinner, the 2021 UK National Champions and runners-up will be presented with their trophies, followed by the 2021 MSUK British Drag Racing Championship top three and finally the 2021 SPRC Perpetual Award Winners.
Tickets for the Dinner Dance are £40 per adult and £20 for 12’s and under, which includes a three course set meal plus tea/coffee and mints. The children’s menu will be Chicken nuggets and chips followed by ice cream. If you have any special dietary requirements then please contact Yvonne at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please do not approach the hotel with requests. Numbers are limited to 300 and will be available until Friday, 14 January, so get your applications in early.
To order tickets please click here and complete the online form. You can pay by card (Note: we are unable to take payment using American Express), BACS or by cheque. Bookings will be confirmed by email once completed.
SPRC have negotiated a preferential rate for rooms in the hotel - £65 for a single or £75 for a double room including breakfast. To book a room please call the Mercure on 01234 799988, ask for Reservations and mention that you are attending the SPRC Dinner on 29th January 2022. However, we have only managed to confirm an allocation of 70 rooms, which will be available until 31 December, after which date any rooms not taken up will be put into general availability and the preferential rate will cease.
Should our allocation be taken up the Swan Hotel, across the river from the Mercure, has rooms available at a special rate to us. This link will take you to the bedrooms available for you to book, or alternatively if you prefer to book via telephone call: 01234 346565 quoting code GA000997. The fixed discount that we have managed to arrange is off the public price so please note that this rate may change over time depending whether their public rates change. A credit/debit card is required to guarantee the room with payment taken at the time of the stay. Please check their cancellation policy on their website www.bedfordswanhotel.co.uk.
2021 UK Champions.
27th September: Congratulations to the 2021 National, Club and ACU Champions in the UK:
Motorsport UK Pro Modified: Kev Slyfield
Track Worx Comp Eliminator: Nic Williams
Fast R Super Comp: Leah Kellett
Dave Grady Super Gas Shootout: Andy Harrison
Peter Nee Super Pro ET: Team Giles & Hartley
Modurstang Pro ET: Lee Huxley
Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET: Dan Holloway
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator: Andy Bond
Lucas Oil Junior Dragster: Harry Redshaw
NEM Plant Nostalgia Super Stock: Dave Billadeau
VW Sportsman: Rob Creswell
VW Pro: James Hodson
Outlaw Flat Four: James Wotton
Renegade Outlaw Anglia: Jedd Guy
Wild Bunch: Team Rebel (Pete and Rob Brown)
ACU Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike: Steve Woollatt
ACU Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike: Steve Venables
ACU Leeks Landscapes Funny Bike: Stuart Crane
ACU Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike: Louis Davies
ACU Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike: Hollie King
JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike: Jay Roe
Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike: Rick Sawatzki
Blood Cancer UK ET Bike: Phil Pratt
The champions are subject to official ratification. The SPRC Club champions for Top Fuel Bike, Super Street Bike, Funny Bike, Comp Bike and Junior Drag Bike will be announced separately.
STP UK National Finals results.
27th September: Congratulations to the winners of the STP UK National Finals held over the weekend at Santa Pod Raceway:
Motorsport UK Pro Modified: Kev Slyfield 5.9750/236.22 def. Jean Dulamon 6.3041/218.24
Track Worx Comp Eliminator: Jordan Payne 21.4995/47.11 def. Robin Orthodoxou no-show
Fast R Super Comp: Leah Kellett 8.9189/163.06 def. Steve Hudson 8.9206/143.51
Dave Grady Super Gas Shootout: Simon Fulton 9.9224/138.59 def. Tim Moore 9.9246/142.15
Peter Nee Super Pro ET: Alan Didwell 7.7423/168.52 (7.72) def. Billy Gane 8.5977/157.92 (8.57)
Modurstang Pro ET: Leigh Morris 10.2675/126.26 (10.14) def. Andy Garnett 11.1205/114.35 (11.06)
Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET: Rob Creswell 13.8694/96.30 (13.80) def. Holley Walters 15.8362/87.50 (15.84)
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator: Andy Bond 6.8485/210.92 def. Mark Todd 7.2240/204.41
Lucas Oil Junior Dragster: Luke Fulton 8.3418/77.46 (8.32) def. Caitlin Wilson 8.1781/76.55 (8.20)
NEM Plant Nostalgia Super Stock: James Oliver 9.5062/126.84 (9.36) def. Guy King 9.5062/126.84 (10.05)
VW Sportsman: Steve Stone 16.7338/76.31 (16.70) def. Connor Jones 16.7686/77.19 (16.70)
VW Pro: Dave Crowhurst 9.6918 140.68 (9.63) def. Abi Tether 12.9207 105.16 (12.85)
Outlaw Flat Four: Paul Bate 11.6325/123.07 def. Darren Shepherd 11.9828/113.36
Wild Bunch: Pete Brown 8.60, unopposed
Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike: Steve Woollatt 6.2694/217.89 def. Al Smith, NTR stage foul
Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike: Steve Venables 7.1274/180.69 def. Alan Morrison Jnr 7.1572/198.81
Leeks Landscapes Funny Bike: Dave Peters 7.4451/173.70 def. Tony Clark 7.7252/164.85
Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike: Chris Neary 7.5814/182.06 def. Louis Davies (no-show)
JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike: Ian Chrichlow 8.5033/156.29 def. Alan Morrison 8.4964/140.69
Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike: Rick Sawatzki 9.5156/129.41 def. Martin Hallett 9.8454 127.75
Blood Cancer UK ET Bike: Paul Adams 9.4075 137.27 (9.12) def. Phil Pratt 9.9780 145.26 (9.12)
Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike: Hollie King 11.5518/53.91 (11.40) def. Casey Holgate 11.1431/52.21 (10.00)
Subject to official ratification the following records were set:
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator ET: 6.805, Andy Bond
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator Speed: 213.09, Andy Bond
The following Santa Pod Raceway track record was set:
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator ET: 6.8052, Andy Bond
Congratulations to Dave Grady Super Gas racer Andy Harrison and VW Pro racer Carl Goldsmith who won the two Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Awards of £50 apiece supported by Cath and Tig Napier, and to Pro ET racer James Oliver who won the Eurodragster.com/Twister Racing Award of £50 supported by Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield.
Congratulations also to Lucas Oil Junior Dragster racers Purdie Hadfield and Luke Fulton who won the Bob's Photo Finish Award of £50 each posted by sponsor and longtime Eurodragster.com supporter Bob Roberts. Purdie and Luke's finish line margin was 0.0051 seconds or 6.95 inches.
Thanks to David Anniwell of the Santa Pod Timing Crew for sending us detailed timing data, including run what ya brung results, which we have posted to our timing data area which you can see by clicking on Data, then Timing Data at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Official results can be seen at Santa Pod's Official Results Site.
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored STP National Finals reports, results and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Please join Simon in thanking Julian and Diana for their hard work over the race weekend, and well done to the Santa Pod Raceway track crew for maintaining a great racing surface.
We look forward to publishing racer comments on the event tomorrow.
ACU drag bike points updated.
24th September: Many thanks to Ian King for updating us on the latest ACU/UK Championship positions on the King Racing web site.
ACU Championship Co-ordinator Ian King would like to congratulate all the winners especially Mark Smith who took his first Funnybike Class win running his first six in the process, Jake Mecheall for taking his first class win in SSB, and Steve Venables for setting a new ACU Championship speed record in SSB.
It was also the first time in my memory that the Funnybike class boasted an 8 bike field of runners who all qualified in the 7 second zone - well done all!
Snake Eyes' season ends.
24th September: Many thanks to Wild Bunch racer Andrew Clifford who has sent in a brief review of his season after it ended prematurely last weekend at the NSRA Hot Rod Drags:
Firstly before I indulge in writing about myself I’d just like to say massive congrats to Jedd Guy and the whole team for throwing down that first OA 6 second pass and then a couple more just for luck! Gutted I missed that first one as we were in the pairing lanes. I’ve loved the OA’s since the very beginning when I went to Avon Park as a wee lad!
I think it’s fair to say that our team have had a love/hate relationship with racing this year. Full of ups and downs, frustrations, the odd argument and ultimately some compromises along the way.
Unfortunately our season came to a premature end at the Hot Rod Drags last weekend with a stripped spark plug thread in the head spotted on the Sunday morning. With no time this week to fix it we had to call it a day for this year. However, we managed to go out with a bit of show at the Saturday night “Cracklefest”. Thoroughly enjoyable from my front row seat in the car watching the header flames firing into the dark for the last time this season.
It's always tough to focus on the positives as the negatives often weigh on your mind much more. However, to come out with a new car and run PBs of 8.94 and 154mph in our first full season is an achievement we should be proud of. If we can cure our starting problems and work out what the car likes then there is definitely more to come from the big old Ford in 2022. I’m already looking forward to it.
Overall it’s been a really fun season experiencing my first full year in the driver’s seat. Certainly a bit of a change compared to crewing for Dad.
So to finalise I would just like to say thank you to a few people for everything they have done this year. Mum and Dad; car owners, storage and transportation (hopefully now the towing laws have been relaxed I can tow my own car to the track next year!!). My son James for his invaluable technical and tuning knowledge. He never gives up! My wife Rach for ensuring I keep a level head after I’ve lost faith or confidence. She’s been the driving force behind our team this year.
Steve and Lesley Field (Fieldcraft Fabrication) – thanks for building me an 8 second slingshot! Huge thanks and big love to everyone in the Wild Bunch and Super Comp pits for all their help, advice and support. I’m really sorry to everyone I held up at the head of the paring lanes whenever we had starting issues.
Thanks to the Santa Pod top end turnout crew for pushing me round the corner after almost every run this year. I WILL keep it running one day. Thanks to Ian and co. at the Pod for keeping me safe and giving us a fantastic track to run on and thank you to Eurodragster.com for continuing to provide THE BEST coverage of not just European drag racing but globally too (you're welcome - Editor).
I’ll be at the National Finals on Saturday as a spectator for once, cheering everyone on. Can’t keep away from the action! See you all next year.
24th September: A big Happy Birthday to our good friend and sometime pit photographer Paul Lanyon and to 2021 Outlaw Anglia champion Jedd Guy. Have a great day guys from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
Claire Meaddows of the Wild Bunch has published her report from the Hot Rod Drags to the class's web site at www.the-wild-bunch.co.uk and announced the winners of the Roy Wilding Nostalgia Race Cars Series, Pete and Rob Brown in Rebel, closely followed by Phil James in Rampage. Congratulations to them and thanks to Claire for her tremendous efforts in running the class.
BBC to film Dakota race.
24th September: The next 1/8 mile heads up drag race cash day at Dakota Raceway on Saturday 2nd October will have a guest star and be filmed by the BBC, says promoter Lee Child.
Lee said "The BBC are filming the race and will have about 15 cars with them. Their professional driver and adviser will be 2021 Summer Nationals Pro Modified champion Annie Wallace. So racers should get entered to win, get richer and maybe famous".
The categories of competition are:
Pro AWD: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street AWD: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Rear Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Front Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Front Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Based on a 16 car field the winner gets £400 in each category. In the event of numbers in each category not being fulfilled, there will be a reduced prize fund, for example in a 4 car category £150 and 8 car category £200. In event of the category exceeding 16 cars, the prize will go up from £400. However Lee is looking for sponsor input to increase the prize funds "so be aware things are subject to change".
Entry fees: Entry to the 1/8 mile heads up drag race cash day with 1/4 mile test and tune entry is now open costing £100, including one crew ticket. Racers should enter online as there is pre entry only, no entry on the day. If you get eliminated from the 1/8 mile no time drag race, you then can do timed 1/4 mile test runs at no extra charge. Passengers have an additional charge, and the entry cost on the gate for spectators is £10 per person kids go free.
Click to enter at this link.
Lipponen wins Fueltech Nitrobike Showdown series.
24th September: Super Twin racer Vesa Lipponen was declared winner of the 2021 Fueltech Nitrobike Showdown series after the final race at Kauhava was rained off. Qualifying positions after two sessions were:
You can see videos of some of the runs at Baldie's VooDoo Racing Youtube channel, and a gallery of photos have been uploaded to Facebook by TMu Photography.
It wasn't an easy first season for the Fueltech Nitrobike Showdown, with weather severely affecting three races, another two races cancelled due to environmental protest, and only one (Mantorp) completed. However 18 competing racers gave the series their full support in the face of these problems, and we can only hope to see similarly large fields of nitro bikes racing across Europe in 2022.
British Junior Dragster Club awards.
23rd September: After qualifying finishes on Saturday at the National Finals, the annual Junior Dragster awards from the British Junior Dragster Club, run by Edel McDonald, with the help of husband Graham and son Liam, will be presented by Eurodragster.com editor Simon in the JD pits:
Edel said "Even though we can't come over from Ireland, we don't want to let the Junior Dragster racers down. We give many cups out, from best light in JS and JM and JMA , to sportsman or woman. All awards have a positive inscription to give encouragement. Many thanks to Jan Mugridge for collecting the cups and organising the table.
"The special voted-for cups are headed up by the Junior Stock Cup, named the Anita Board cup in memory of the young Australian girl who sadly died in her Junior Stock dragster, and comes with a £50 gift voucher. The Halfscale cup is given to the Junior Dragster racer who the other Juniors think is outstanding and comes with a voucher for $100 from Half Scale Dragsters in the USA.
"Other cups are given to the outstanding Junior Dragster crew chief (with a £50 gift voucher for the Pod Shop), rising stars in Junior Dragster (two awards, each with a £25 voucher) and the race family that stands out. New for this year is the Tog trophy, awarded by the former editor of Eurodragster.com to those he considers set a fine example to other racers and to the fans of the class.
"Liam hopes to return next year with a new car from America which was delayed in its journey this summer. He had planned to race in the US for three months but was unable to due to lockdown and misses his friends in England.
"If anyone would like to get involved in any way to promote Junior Dragster racing in England, to help to promote the racers to bigger and better things in the future, they will hopefully represent England further afield in 2022 and are the future of our sport. "Thanks to Eurodragster and everyone that has helped in the class. Anyone interested in starting Junior drag racing, contact Santa Pod Raceway to rent a junior dragster".
23rd September: A very Happy Birthday to our keeper of records, and former member of the Santa Pod Raceway timekeeping crew Andy Marrs. Have a great day Marrs, from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
ATD Champions crowned.
23rd September: The 16th European Dragster championship race organised by Association Trophee Dragster took place at Clastres Raceway on 4th-5th September. Here is a summary of the results of the final 2021 race in the series:
With 5 points difference between the top 3 in Super Pro ET, the final pitted Fabien Dubois (below left) and and Franck Romer from Germany in his Chevrolet Camaro. After an Franck was eliminated by a red light for Franck the outcome for Fabien seemed certain. However a fuel supply problem caused Fabien's dragster to halt 300m down track. As ATD rules dictated that the winner must pass the 400m to win, Fabien had no choice but to get out of his rail and push it for the remaining 100m under a blazing sun and the encouragement of Custom Gang Racing. After pushing it for more than 2 minutes, Fabien won the final and the 2021 Super Pro Championship of ATD and congratulations to him.
The final in Pro ET was between Didier Billault in his '70 Dodge Challenger and Peter Soursas in his Plymouth Barracuda '71 (above right). Peter had the better start to defeat Didier and win the 2021 Pro ET Championship. Didier finished in 3rd place in the Championship behind Sophie Zaninetti and his '64 Plymouth Belvedere.
Coming into in the race, the Street Run category had a tie in the standings between Amandine Arnaud in his Camaro and Laurent Arnoult in his '67 Chevrolet Chevelle. Against expectations, the final was 100% Swiss, between Marc Steinegger in his sublime Buick GSX and Jean-Luc Jacot in his Pontiac Trans Am (below left). Jean-Luc wins the final and the 2021 Trophy. He was closely followed by Laurent Arnoult and Amandine Arnaud who moves up to the Super Pro ET category in 2022.
Finally in the Junior category, there was an international and 100% female final between the German Chantal Wagner and the Dutch Cheyenne Visser (above right, far lane). Cheyenne won the final and the 2021 Trophy. His compatriot Sam Timmers finished in second place in the Trophy followed by Chantal. The select 200MPH Club at Clastres has a new member in the person of Patrick Dubois from Custom Gang Racing and his Pontiac GXP with a run at 323 km / h (200.7 MPH).
Dates for the Association Trophée Dragster's 2022 series have been announced as 4th-5th June, 2nd-3rd July and 30th-31st July, all races taking place at Clastres Dragway. For further details see the ATD website and Facebook page.
Media from the race can be seen at the following links:
Spot prize picker.
23rd September: Many thanks to Lee Huxley crewman Rich Bell for coming up with a random selector program for elements of bracket racing:
After a twenty-year hiatus from any serious involvement in drag racing (you never really lose the bug do you? Especially when your dad buys a Nova and Lee Huxley gets behind the wheel for a season). I’ve put together a little spot prize website/app that will randomly select a spot prize. Who knows if it is of any use or not, but it should work for anyone that wants to mix things up a little or maybe set up a random grudge race – you can use it however you want.
As well as a random prize, it will give you a random dial in/reaction/random qualifying position and based on number qualified and number of qualifiers will give you a round that the prize should be awarded. Any feedback welcome/ideas for spot prizes (I've tried to keep these simple without needing to enter lots of data). How some prizes are figured out would need to be decided i.e. closest to dial in is that without breaking out.
Readers may remember my “Pieboy” days (but more likely not) as teenager which involved me putting together drag racing sites for fun and taking out of focus blurry photos. So I guess drag racing has a lot to ask for in terms of where I have ended up career-wise (Maple Rock Design web development company - Editor). Massive thank you to Tog who was a massive help when I was starting out all those years ago.
Anyway, enough rambling, I’ve recently scanned and uploaded a selection of my photos from 1999/early 2000s to UK & European drag racing photos on Facebook in two galleries Part 1 and Part 2) if anyone is interested.
23rd September: After the MDRA members' meeting on 25th August including presentation of the cups from the race meeting held on 29th-31st July, preparations have been made for the next event on the MDRA calendar.
Scheduled for 1st-3rd October, the pre-race what ya brung was held on 18th September. Videos taken by Konrad D'Anastasi at the RWYB can be seen on a Youtube playlist at this link.
A further meeting of members will take place tomorrow to be attended by Clifton Grima, Parliamentary Secretary for Youth Sports and Voluntary Organisations in Malta.
STP National Finals racer update.
22nd September: Many thanks to to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for sending us details of track opening and signing on at this weekend's STP National Finals, 25th-26th September, including scrutineering times.
Junior Dragsters will have to sign on and scrutineer for this event, but those are the only car classes that are required to scrutineer.
If you have entered the test day on Friday 24th September you will be allowed access to the track on Thursday 23rd from 8am. The main gates to the track will open at 08.00 on Friday, 24th September.
Friday, 24th September:
10.00 Signing on office opens
10.00-18.00 Scrutineering for bikes
15.00-19.00 Scrutineering for Junior Dragster only
Saturday 25th September:
07.00 Signing on open and scrutineering for bikes/Junior Dragster.
09.30 Track open for qualifying.
Sunday 26th September:
07.30 Signing on and scrutineering open.
09.30 Track open for qualifying/eliminations.
The detailed running orders and printable entry list can be seen in our event coverage page.
2021 championship outcomes.
22nd September: In 2021 the SPRC National and Club Drag Racing championships have returned to some degree of normality following the pandemic and resultant cancellation of 2020's official series. Including the National Finals, there will have been six rounds of racing for each class, and all rounds have been able to be completed apart from the Springspeed Nationals. As in past years, some championships are finely poised at this point, others have already been decided. In one class, Renegade Outlaw Anglia, the final round of the SPRC Club Championship was held last weekend at the Hot Rod Drags and congratulations to Jedd Guy on the title, as well as being the first into the sixes in the class as described in his article yesterday.
In Motorsport UK Pro Modified, Nick Davies has a lead of only ten points over Kev Slyfield. Round wins bring 20 points, so the championship can turn if one racer goes a round of eliminations further than the other. Qualifying and 5 bonus points for low ET could also make a difference.
Track Worx Competition Eliminator is led by Nic Williams, who has attended every round, winning 200 bonus points, which the next three in the points table will not have the benefit of. Jordan Payne is in second position and, being 530 points behind Nic, will need to win the event and qualify at the top with Nic going out in round one, to secure the title. Jordan will also need to stay a round ahead of Dan Williams in third place to defend his position.
With a lead of 630 points and only 590 available, Leah Kellett has secured the championship in Super Comp and congratulations to her. Second position is closely contested between Steven Hudson and Paul Hudson (not related we believe). These two will be making sure they go further than the other in eliminations.
Dave Grady Super Gas has 750 points available; Andy Harrison is 570 points ahead of second placed Blitzkrieg (Tim Adam and Jon Giles, Tim racing this weekend). Andy will need to win two rounds or qualify at the top and win one round to secure the championship, Tim will need to qualify at the top, win the event, with Andy going out early to take it away from him.
In Peter Nee Super Pro ET, neither leaders Giles & Hartley (Barry driving this event) and Ron Bartlett attended all events, whereas Billy Gane has the 200 point bonus and is thus 390 points behind. With 920 points available, Barry will need to qualify well and reach the semi-finals to secure his second championship since 2010. Billy and Ron need to get as far, and Barry go out early, with Ron going further than Billy for him to win the championship.
Lee Huxley has a generous lead in Modurstang Pro ET over Amy Watkins, however second to fourth in this most competitive class are separated by less than one round of elimination wins. So look for more wafer thin qualifying margins and close racing involving them with Simon Innes, Tom Watkins and Ronnie Mercer.
The top three in Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET are separated by less than a round of racing, Dan Holloway, Felicity Gibbs and Gary Lake all having done well. As well as elimination points, qualifying points can make a difference, and it's possible that fourth or fifth placed Rob Creswell or Gill Medley could make a move up the standings.
With an entry of eight, Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator has 620 points available and with Andy Bond leading by 1470, he has secured the championship and congratulations to him and the U6ly team. Second place is held by Al McSweeney, with Mark Todd a further 510 points back. Al will just need to qualify above bottom place and take the green light in the first round to secure runner up position.
In Lucas Oil Junior Dragster Harry Redshaw is 670 points ahead of second place with 1010 points available. Getting two round wins and qualifying more than five positions from bottom will secure Harry the championship. Numbers two to seven in the points, Purdie Hadfield, Thomas Cook-Abbot, Freddie Taylor, Katie Ellis and Jessica Bishop could all achieve second position by qualifying better and going further in eliminations than the others.
NEM Plant Nostalgia Super Stock has a great 18 car entry. The championship is led by Dave Billadeau who has already been declared champion in 'lifestyle' events. However with a lead of 220 points and 920 available, there is all to play for. Stuart 'Kiwi' Thompson needs to go three qualifying positions and two rounds further than Dave to secure the championship, whereas if Dave and Kiwi both go out early there is group of Jim Chandler, Adrian Portelli, James Oliver, Simon Rickwood Don Scott, Chris Goodale, Vic Parsons and Spencer Tramm who will be battling it out for honours.
In Wild Bunch, the title will go between Mark Coulsell, Pete Brown, and Phil James who are close in the points. VW Pro is between James Hodson and Adrian Solly, both of whom are way ahead of the rest of the field, with only 50 points between them. VW Sportsman is led by Rob Creswell with Jon Crawford 480 points behind. 940 points are available meaning that Jon will have to rely on Rob qualifying worse and going out early, and get to the semi finals to retain his championship.
In Outlaw Flat Four the leader, Dave Wheatley, is unable to attend and the title is heading in the direction of James Wotton who will be the only racer in contention to get the all rounds bonus, and also has a 360 point advantage over Jonny Marriage who is next in the standings. With 500 points available, one round win will secure James the championship.
BDRHoF member Steve Woollatt went to the top of the ACU Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike standings at the Euro Finals Shootout and with a quick and reliable combination is looking better for the title, however never count out the determination of Al Smith with Phil Baimbridge Racing, and Neil Midgley with Lucas Oil Cannon Engineering entry, both of which are less than one round of racing behind Steve.
In ACU Leeks Landscapes Funny Bike competition, congratulations to Stuart Crane who has amassed sufficient points to win the Championship. At the Euro Finals Shootout, the game plan for Stuart's Warpspeed Racing team became clear when, after suffering gearbox problems, Stuart helped see to it that his engine combination in team mate Mark Smith's bike got him the win, low ET and top speed bonus, and a move up the points. With Mark fourth in points and Tony Clark nursing a bent crankshaft in Phil Crossley's bike, Warpspeed have the chance to get Mark into second position by keeping Tony and Dave Peters out of the final, and Stuart and Mark into it.
ACU Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike has a repeat winner from 2019 in Louis Davies and congratulations to him on his second Comp Bike championship and fourth overall. Chris Neary and Sean Mills will be fighting it out for runner up spot.
To win the ACU Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike championship Steve Venables needs to qualify #1 or have one round win to secure the championship, second placed Alan Morrison Jnr needs to defend his position from Stephen Mead in third position. Stephen could gain second, but would need to go two rounds further than Alan and get a big advantage in qualifying as well.
JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike is Jay Roe's providing he stays ahead of Joe Elliott in eliminations. Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 bike is closer, and if leader Craig Wright and second placed Richard Sawatzki shadow one another during the event the championship could go down to the final round.
In Blood Cancer UK ET Bike Phil Pratt has amassed sufficient points to be Champion and congratulations to him. Second place is between Paul Adams, Gary Hester and Dave Grundy and with an entry of 16 bikes there will be some great match-ups involving these three. ACU Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike has Casey Holgate in the lead with Hollie King close behind, and either of these two could become champion.
So those are the possibilities. What is certain is that you can witness all the drama first-hand if you go to santapodtickets.com and buy tickets to attend the event. You can also see the current points by going to our points page.
National Finals perfect awards.
22nd September: £250 is up for grabs at this weekend's STP National Finals courtesy of Eurodragster.com and our sponsors.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 after it was won by Pro ET racer Mason Griffiths at the Euro Finals Shootout. The money will be paid to the first racer at the event to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available in all classes during both qualifying and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the day. Yes, day, because sponsors Cath and Tig Napier have kindly increased the award to £50 per day for the National Finals only. If the award isn't won on Saturday, it rolls over to Sunday and the winner gets £100.
The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Cath and Tig of Modurstang Pro ET team Bad Habit Racing (racing this weekend in Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET). A special decal produced by Cath and Tig, and designed by Peter Walters, will be presented to the winner.
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On or from Eurodragster.com staff.
The Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supported by Andy Hadfield and the Twister Race Team has been reset to £50 after it was won by Super Pro ET racer Mick Howling at the Euro Finals Shootout. The money will be paid to the first racer at the event to run +0.000 on index or dial-in. The Perfect ET Award is available in Peter Nee Super Pro ET, Modurstang Pro ET, Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET, B Fast R Super Comp, Dave Grady Super Gas Shootout, Nostalgia Super Stock, VW Sportsman, VW Pro, Wild Bunch, Lucas Oil Junior Dragster (eliminations only), JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike, Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike, Blood Cancer UK ET Bike, and Eurodragster Junior Drag Bike. but will only be awarded for the first Perfect ET of the weekend. The Perfect ET Award is presented in association with Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield of the Twister Race Team.
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect ET Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On or from Eurodragster.com staff.
Bob's Photo Finish Award, which is presented in association with Eurodragster.com sponsor Bob Roberts, will award £50 each to the racers involved in the closest race of eliminations at this weekend's event.
The closest race will be decided upon distance rather than time since, for example, 0.001 seconds at 230 mph is further than 0.002 seconds at 110 mph. For this reason the official timing data will need to be consulted so the winners will be announced here on Eurodragster.com as soon as possible after the event and the winners will then be contacted for their preferred method of payment.
Bob's Photo Finish Award is open to all classes during eliminations only and although Eurodragster.com decals are not mandatory we would appreciate if it they are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On.
Earl's Raceway Hot Rod and Gasser Nats at Goodwood Revival.
22nd September: Our latest photo feature covers the special display of hot rods and gassers at the Goodwood Revival meeting held 17th-19th September at Goodwood Circuit in West Sussex. Photographer Dave Dick kindly supplied photos and an article about the origins of the event.
Dave said "The event was a celebration to mark seventy years since the forming of the NHRA in the USA. There were so many great cars in the celebration and it drew crowds all day long at Goodwood. Each day’s proceedings were opened with a parade of the hot rods around the circuit, I can’t think of a better way to start a great day’s enjoyment.
As well as some great rods from the UK there were a contingent of US Hot Rods from the Rolling Bones Hot Rod Shop in New York. There were a lot of great stand out cars but one that stood out for me was the Boston Brawler of Blaise Lewis, rebuilt by the original builders at Valley Gas Speedshop with a blown 392ci Hemi engine.
You can see our latest feature, sponsored by Lucas Oil by clicking on this link or going to the list of features and interviews in the main menu. Many thanks to Dave Dick for his coverage.
Single garage to 6 seconds.
21st September: Many thanks to Outlaw Anglia racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Jedd Guy for sending his thoughts on an incredible meeting last weekend:
As the dust begins to clear on the most amazing weekend of racing me and my team have had, my mind goes back 8 years to one day where an ill fated run put me into the wall and saw the end of the Shorty's Hotrod of the time.
However a plan/dream started to form as I lay in pain, unable to sleep. A dream to build a new car to be truly competitive even if at the time I didnt know if I'd ever be able to fund such a car.
After a short recovery as a 22 year old, with a RSJ donated from a building site to be used as a jig and a single garage, I set about turning a bunch of tubes and a fibre glass body into what it is today.
And what is it today?.... It is the first UK Outlaw Anglia to run a 6! With the fastest passes ever seen in Outlaw Anglia competition.
If you had told the 22 year old me you'd be in the race for the first 6 in the UK, I would have probably laughed at you. But that didn't put me off spending every penny I had and spending every spare hour in that single garage I could, to build a car that I thought would be able to handle any power I could throw at it.
The car proved itself on the track with multiple event wins but unfortunately never managed to net us a championship win. And in 2018 things in Outlaw Anglia saw a drastic change with teams stepping up. Running high 7s wasn't gonna cut in any more. To keep up, more nitrous was introduced to the engine seeing an increase in ET to 7.65 but spelt the end to the faithful 498ci big block Chevy we had campaigned for so many years.
2019 saw the doors of Shorty's Fabrication Shop open... my very own business! Racing was put on the back burner to focus on making what I love doing (making cars go stupidly fast) into a strong business. It hasn't been easy with the entire world going into lockdown, but a huge thank you to my customers, we managed our way through.
Now to late 2020 after helping with tuning, Colin Millar reset the OA et record into the 7.1s. The itch to get back racing was becoming hard to ignore. A phone call from a man who, without his help, advice and what's turned into a great friendship I wouldn't have managed to do any of the things I have managed to do, a man who is a engine building master and a man who's knowledge of drag racing seems almost limitless...Jeff Bull. He teased me by saying he had a motor in his shop that would be perfect for my little Pop.
The motor in question was the 735ci nitrous engine out of Roger Moore's Pro Mod Viper. First thoughts were that it was out of my price range. Of all people to convince me to go for it, it was my wife Jemma. I know, shocking right, your partner is normally the one who moans about how much money we spend to go racing. I definitely picked a good one there!
The off season period between 2020 and 2021 was busy getting the new motor to fit, which went into the hole surprising easy considering the new motor was bigger in every way. Then it was off for a new paint job. Thanks to the boys at Przym Paint. Andy, Paul and John did a fantastic job!
The buzz around Outlaw Anglia leading up to 2021 is like nothing I have seen before. Colin Millar had gone 7.04 at the last meeting in 2020, Simon Barlow had already gone 7.08, upgrading in power for the season to come, Jon webster had brought out a new car out proving to run very quick in its first meeting with some incredible 60ft times and the news of what I was planning. The race for the 6 was well and truly on!
The start of the season was a nervous time for the team. Having not driven for 3 years and such a large increase in power luckily, as soon as I put on my racesuit, it was like I had never stopped and the car handled better than ever. Now feeling confident with the car it was time to turn it up.
Tyre shake... the dreaded tyre shake!!! The mid season was full of it. There wasn't a single race where I went to the start line without changes to try and rectify the problem. Slowly making it better run after run then at Dragstalgia we made great strides, running 7.01 in qualifying, with a 7.06 in eliminations to back it up and take the OA class ET record.
We were then stuck in the 7.0s for two more meetings, to the point where myself and crew were getting fed up of running 7.0...it seems mad to be saying that, but we were so close we could almost touch it.
The 2021 NSRA Hot Rod Drags is a meeting that will go down in Outlaw Anglia history, being held on the week of the 8th anniversary of the crash at Shakey. The last meeting of the Outlaw Anglia championship, and with a commanding lead in the championship, I sure as hell was going to give it everything I had to break into the 6s.
The first qualifier didn't go to plan it moved around the lane so I lifted to a 7.4. The second qualifier Colin Millar, ever the showman, says "let's be first pair out and put on a show for the crowd". Boy did we do that!
The best race ever in Outlaw Anglia! Neck and neck the whole way. Two of the fastest cars this class has ever seen with only two metres in it at the finish line. The quickest side by side pass so far.
Travelling down the shut down area seems to take an eternity when you're desperate to know "did I do it, was that the one". I felt a misfire on the run but I knew it was fast but was it just going to be another 7.0?
The next few minutes after hearing Jemma screaming down the radio "6.97!" are a bit of a blur. All I know is there was lots of shouting, jumping and crying. We had f***ing well done it! Taken a car built in a single garage to being the first UK 6 second Outlaw Anglia!
Not only did we run just one six second pass, we managed to run three with a best of 6.88. We won the meeting against Colin Millar in the fastest ever final, my 6.93 to his 7.06 and we reset the mph record to 194.52. This is the most amazing way to finish an amazing season.
Years of blood, sweat and tears have been put into this once in a lifetime achievement, and I thank from the bottom of my heart everyone who has helped us along the way.
There are so many people to thank, there are just a few I'd like to mention, as without them this wouldn't have been possible.
My wife Jemma, she never fails to support me and help me through the difficult times. My parents Ray and Andrea, they have taught me so much and always helped me follow my dreams. Jeff Bull, not only has he build me a record setting engine. His continued support in my business and racing are out of this world.
Our team is small, so these people's contributions are massive, and it's just as much their achievement.
Hot Rod Drags racer comments.
21st September: The Hot Rod Drags was a fascinating mixture of a diverse run what ya brung event including cars of almost every description, and tough racing in the four invited classes. Two classes had traditional racing, Outlaw Anglia heads-up and Gasser Circus a bracket competition, whilst two had a average closest to index/dial which produced a great deal of personal bests as well as right-on passes. Below are selected social media comments from racers in each category:
Outlaw Anglia was the standout class in that the six second barrier was broken and the final was wonderfully close, which wasn't just for show, the outcome of the championship depended on who won. In the end Jedd Guy was the victor, and he had run three six second passes in order to achieve that (see Jedd's account above).
Jedd and his team were almost speechless after the victory. They posted "Hot Rod Drags Winner, Outlaw Anglia 2021 Championship Winner, ET Record Holder, MPH Record Holder, AND we ran three 6 second passes! Over the moon! Thank you all so much for the support!". Wife Jemma added "So proud of my hubby! Aimed to run a 6 before he turned 30 and today he made his dream come true! No words to describe how incredible this weekend has been! Amazing times with amazing friends!"
A more reflective post was from Rees Adams, who summarised: "OA family, a big thank you from the fans. You have put on the best OA weekend ever. All the new PBs, ET stickers earned and the hard working crews for making it all possible for us to watch. You are all stars. Have a great, but probably expensive off season and we'll see you at the track next year."
As well as congratulating Jedd, class organiser Colin Millar gave tribute to Spencer Tidswell (below left) on his first nine in Outlaw Anglia: "Massive well done to Spencer Tidswell on jumping well into the 9s with a stomping 9.63 well done to you and the team".
The weekend was not all plain sailing for class members though. Doug McClure (above right) posted after several troubled runs: "I’m pleased to say no real damage at the weekend, two bent push rods and two smashed rockers. Also discovered head gasket gone too. Apart from that what a weekend for the Anglia guys and girls".
In the Supercharged Outlaws, there were several PBs but on two of the cars, the need for speed led to wild wheelies. Tony Underhill (below left, image courtesy Pudgey's Pictures) wrote: So what a weekend, new PB 7.05, think to yourself I can do better that that let’s give it another go and then…. Car's fine apart from some superficial damage, I'm fine apart from a bent ego, want to say thanks to my whole team for looking after me and giving me a badass race car, back bigger and stronger with James Woody Woodsford next year.
Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield (below right, image courtesy AF Photography) suffered an axle bending wheelie when carrying some of the ashes of Dave Rowlands in his parachute (plans have been hatched for the task to be completed at the Flame & Thunder show on 30th October). New team member (and 9.50 Bike racer) Bradley Head wrote: "Another amazing weekend away at the Hot Rod Drags! Really enjoyed my first time crewing for Team Twister, thank you Andy Fadster for allowing me to be a part of the team! Shame it ended like it did but we know there is plenty more to come!
"Also great to help out Tony Underhill again although you never found the six and once again it didn’t end how we would have liked, you and the car have come such a long way in the past couple of weekends and to come out with a 7.05 PB is nothing to be upset about well done mate! Finally unfortunately circumstances left Jedd Guy with no one to back him up ! Was an absolute pleasure to be there to watch you win your first OA championship and take both ends of the record in OA so proud of you brother! Thanks also for all the birthday wishes I was well and truly spoiled.
Also running in Supercharged Outlaws was Robbie Grabham with the Freddie's Revenge with Austin A35 body on, who posted: "We had some query transmission issues yesterday on the first and second run, but still managed a 7.75 with two gears! The car was stripped and checked with no faults found. We’ve also made some changes to the slicks air pressure to play with the stability of the car whilst the A35 body is on. On the third run it was lovely and strong with a super straight pass, all 3 gears (and a theory on the minor issue) and a 7.49 at 162mph! The A35 is a much heavier body and the transmission wasn’t 100% - but that’s only 4 tenths of a second off Robbie’s PB! Brilliant stuff! Rain unfortunately stopped Supercharged Outlaws competition on Sunday morning and the team were homeward bound, Robbie's dad Dave getting a lot of love from his fans and friends as he continues his recovery from a stroke.
Wayne Allman (below left) returned to the track after three years and posted: what a weekend! Back in the saddle after 3 years!
First 330ft -ish test pass with the new blower / ignition set up went well , plugs looked like they were burning evenly but on the safe side so onto test 2 which was to be an 1/8th mile pass. We got pushed back after the burnout with a small fuel leak , a -6 fitting had cracked! Luckily I had one. Test 3 , well this should have been the 1/8th mile pass but it felt good so i kept with it , i was drifting right towards the wall but the steering wasn’t doing anything so i had to lift , back on the throttle then had to lift again , back on again and over the line resulting in a 7.26 @ 188mph!
This is our second fastest run at Santa Pod ever and only 3/100s slower than our fastest , on a test pass and getting off the throttle twice ! he reason i had to lift is the front wheels weren’t on the ground. Overall I’m really pleased with how it’s going , I’ve got to address the wheelieing prob but it’s a great start to getting and aerodynamically challenged truck to run a 6.
Thanks to my crew as always , Helen, Marcus, James, Joa , Chris and Brandon for towing and photography duties , couldn’t do it without you. And thanks to everyone that stopped by to say hello Oh and Gavin the nodding dog’s head comes off when both parachutes are deployed.
In Wild Bunch, newcomer Rich Butcher (above right) was delighted to be able to run in the class: "Thanks to you lot ....and I mean all of you... This stupid old bastard has just had one of the best weekends of his whole life. Ken's (Cooper) little 4orth dimension slingshot that we just threw together, wonky wheel and all, well exceeded all our wildest expectations. We were surrounded by seriously fast proper pieces of kit on all sides, you gang couldn't have been kinder to me and my family... Just magic... Don't really do emotional,but I am now. Humbled to be amongst you all. Roll on next year.
NSRA applauds Hot Rod Drags racers.
20th September: The National Street Road Association has once again awarded trophies for its 'Dirty Dozen', described as "Recipients don't have to be the shiniest, don't have to have the most chrome or the best upholstery. They don't have to be the quickest or fastest; the only criterion for eligibility is that the vehicle has entered into the spirit of the event and has been put through its paces on the quarter mile. Each year members of the NSRA Committee are enlisted to select what takes their fancy." The winners were a very eclectic selection of cars as detailed in the list below:
21st September: Many thanks to Nigel Taylor of Unusual Car Sales UK for telling us about his NSRA Hot Rod Drags in which his son Kenzie made quite an impact on the racing community:
"My 16 year old Kenzie Taylor achieved his MSA License at the Hot Rod Drags in the 2.9i V6 100e, and what a superb meeting to do it at. Kenzie also won an NSRA Dirty Dozen award for his efforts So we have one happy boy.
We would like to say a massive Thankyou to Ian Marshall for all the pestering questions he answered and the loan of an approved helmet, Ben and Cadie Smith for taking Kenzie for the weekend, and the loan of a race jacket and trousers, thanks to Steve Summer, Tom Mitty (crewing), the NSRA for a superb event, all the other racers for the company including Tony Underhill, Kev Slyfield, Rob Brown, Hayley Fyfe, Purdie Hadfield and crew, Callum Pudge, and everyone else that made him welcome.
We would like to say a big Thankyou to all the Modified 100e crew for their support and encouragement as well as our other family Paul, Steve, Pam and Somer Dale.
Massive thanks to everyone that stopped and spoke about Unusual Car Sales UK , I was absolutely overwhelmed by all the great comments especially by the commentator Colin Theobald, Thankyou! Means a lot.
Well done Jedd Guy, just out of this world, Robin Read - just superb and so good to see our old mate Dave 'Splidgers' Grabham back in the pairing lanes with his team.
Thank you to our sponsors Mike Gates and all the Hayling Garage crew and thankyou to Andy Bond, Chloe Wilkins, Marc Huxley and all the others that offered equipment! A great bunch you all are, roll on 2022 season.
21st September: We'd like to say Happy Birthday for today to expat Stock/Super Stock racer Carla Pittau, former jet dragster pilot and SPR timing guru Steve Horn, Outlaw Anglia racer Dave Sidaway and in the US, Draglist.com web master Bill Pratt. Have a great day guys.
Drag racing historian Nick Pettitt has uploaded to his Youtube page several drag racing videos from years past and current. Two hours of video from the 2001 NSRA Hot Rod Drags at Shakespeare County Raceway are included and Nick has also uploaded just under two hours from the 2021 edition of the NSRA Hot Rod Drags at Santa Pod Raceway. You can also catch over 60 Hot Rods and Gassers at the 2021 Goodwood Revival, including the Rolling Bones from New York celebrating the 70th anniversary of the National Hot Rod Association. More on this Goodwood event tomorrow with a gallery and report from contributing photographer Dave Dick.
Under a change in the law designed to relieve the HGV driver shortage, car drivers will no longer need a licence to tow trailers or caravans and the towing test is being abolished. You can read more by this link, thanks to Darren Middleton for bringing it to our attention.
Lucas Oil Cannon Motorsports Euros report.
21st September: Many thanks to Chris Hannam for sending us a report of the Lucas Oil Cannon Motorsports Top Fuel Bike team with rider Neil Midgley at the Euro Finals Shootout:
First and foremost we have to report the sad passing of Dale Edmonds. To say that the team was shocked is an understatement. It was just at the last round in July that Dale was planning a new carbon setup for the bike so this was going to be a subdued meeting.
Neil had made more upgrades between events, this included work on the blower drive and moving the MSD pick-up to the opposite side to get a more direct and accurate drive. On top of this the bike was taken up to Al Smith for him to create some 3” diameter exhaust to get the motor to breathe better down the last half of the track as we now know this has been holding the bike back.
At this point I would of course like to thank Al for a great job in a short space of time. A top job indeed.
The meeting was good and fairly trouble free as it goes, we pretty much had a bracket bike. Consistent that is, we ran elapsed times of 6.5, 6.5, 6.4 and 6.4. But all through the weekend we were trying to get back to our 6.2 second performance as both Steve Woollatt and Al Smith were stepping it up and finding their form. Consistency is fine but we would need to bring more to the table as it’s no good to show up at a gunfight with a penknife. We of course wanted to win this event, not only to keep our ACU Top Fuel Bike championship points lead but also for Dale.
The semi-final had us up against Al Smith on the rapid triple. After we had an AMS failure, Neil had rigged up a mechanical fuel system. We had also put more ignition into the bike and more boost to try and get past our opponents. It was a fantastic race, both bikes having issues but Al taking a 6.33 win over our 6.41. We lost a tight race which is never good but we can take it as we gave it our all and came up short.
Unfortunately a blower pipe had popped off at about 900 feet which basically made for losing all power but on checking the data we found that the bike had been on its quickest pass ever. However, we don’t race on ifs and buts but we're optimistic about what the data will lead to. What was worrying was that we had a small amount of oil out of the catch can which on checking turned out to be that we had forgotten to drain it. Apologies to the excellent Santa Pod track crew for that, we were not quite with it this weekend.
On the full engine tear down we found no major issues. There was a small amount of leak past the rings which is filed under "regular wear and tear".
The bike is now in the workshop having new valve guides made and fitted and the motor being rebuilt to get ready for our last round of the year, the STP National Finals at Santa Pod Raceway on 25th-26th September.
As always thanks go to Lucas Oil, Cannon Engineering, MRE, & Par Pippi Willen for their support of our team.
2021 BDRHoF Gala details and booking form now available.
20th September: The Directors of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame are pleased to announce that the 2021 Gala will take place on Saturday 20th November at its familiar location, the Oatlands Park Hotel in Weybridge, Surrey. It will be the first Gala celebration since 2019, following last year’s Covid-induced cancellation. Pandemic concerns also delayed arrangements for this year. The occasion is supported by US Automotive as primary sponsors, with Santa Pod Racers Club.
The black-tie evening will begin at 5.30pm with a Drinks Reception presented by Santa Pod Raceway followed by Dinner at 7.00pm. The celebration will focus on the induction of our new Hall of Fame members, who have been waiting patiently since nomination early last year:
Jeff Byne – Top Fuel/Competition Bike;
Nick Davies – Pro Modified / Fuel Altered;
Ian King – Top Fuel Bike;
Pelle Lindelöw & Gunnar Elmqvist (P&G Racing, Sweden) – Top Fuel Dragster;
John Price – commentary / broadcasting; and
Dave Wilson – Top Alcohol Dragster.
The Junior Dragster and Junior Drag Bike champions of the past two seasons will also be honoured.
Full event details are available on the Gala booking form which may be downloaded at this link. The form includes the menu and meal options and instructions for reserving overnight rooms at the hotel. Payment can be made through the BDRHoF Shop Page at this link. Early booking is advised – guest numbers are limited.
NSRA Hot Rod Drags results.
20th September: Congratulations to the winners at the weekend's NSRA Hot Rod Drags held at Santa Pod Raceway:
Outlaw Anglia: Jedd Guy 6.9379/194.52 def. Colin Millar 7.0668/192.23
Gasser Circus: Graham Barton 10.7980/118.03 (10.79) def. Ray Irish 10.2408/129.02 (10.19)
Supercharged Outlaws: Mike Couch average variance +0.0693 (4 runs), runner up Mick Checkett +0.2062 (4 runs)
Wild Bunch: Pete Brown (Rebel) average variance +0.0303 (2 runs), runner up Alan Lloyd +0.0460
The event will be remembered in history as the breaking of the six second barrier for Outlaw Anglia in the UK, with Jedd Guy running the first six, a 6.9742/193.76 in the second qualifying session, improving to 6.8864/193.88 in the second round of eliminations, and then 6.9379/194.52 in the final against Colin Millar. The 6.8864 becomes the new Santa Pod Raceway track record ET.
Congratulations also to Robin Read who with the Spirit of Le Patron Daimler engined dragster ran 6.6579/201.65 on Friday for the quickest Friday ET trophy from the NSA, improving his times to 6.5215/206.26 and 6.5314/209.02 on Saturday. The NSRA also awarded a trophy for the most runs made on Friday, and congratulations to Andrew Jackson who took his Triumph Herald Coupe to ten runs despite the pairing lanes being packed for the whole day.
Thanks to David Anniwell of the Santa Pod Timing Crew for sending us detailed timing data, including run what ya brung results, which we have posted to our timing data area which you can see by clicking on Data, then Timing Data at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Official results can be seen at Santa Pod's Official Results Site.
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored NSRA Hot Rod Drags reports, results and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Please join Simon in thanking Julian and Diana for their hard work over the race weekend, and well done to the Santa Pod Raceway track crew for providing a great racing surface for all .
We look forward to publishing racer comments on the event tomorrow, and to revealing the winners of the NSRA Dirty Dozen trophies. As well as our galleries and Santa Pod's streaming video, you can see media of the Hot Rod Drags at the following links: Post-Euro Finals Shootout Nationals points posted.
2nd September: Many thanks to Yvonne Tramm for forwarding the latest points standings in the UK National Drag Racing Championhips and SPRC Club Championships after the Euro Finals Shootout. You can check out the UK and SPRC points on our points standing pages by clicking here, or by clicking the Points Standings link under News in the main menu above.
We will be publishing our annual piece on championship outcomes on Wednesday.
Melbourne Round 5 coverage.
20th September: Thanks to former editor Tog for covering the Melbourne Round 5 race at the weekend including Straightliners Championship, NSCC and Duck All Prep competitions. You can see Tog's on- and off-track pictures together with results for the competitions held plus best times Saturday and Sunday, all courtesy of Martyn Greathead of Straightlines, by going to our Melbourne Round 5 coverage page.
David Vegter up to speed at Tierp Arena and Santa Pod Raceway.
20th September: Many thanks to our good friend Remco Scheelings for sending a report on racing activities of Netherlands Pro Mod racer David Vegter over the last month:
At Tierp Arena and Santa Pod Raceway David Vegter once again proved that he is a force to be reckoned with. The Dutchman and his new coloured Vegter Pro Mod Racing ’67 Chevrolet Camaro recorded quick elapsed times at both tracks. At Santa Pod’s Euro Finals Shootout Vegter claimed the number one qualifying position with 5.87 seconds, to advance to the final with 5.86 and 5.85 second elapsed times. In the final the Dutch driver was in the lead when the flexplate broke and he had to sit by and watch Bruno Bader pass him and take the win. Scoring a runner-up position and looking at the numbers, Vegter once again proved to be one of the frontrunners of the European Pro Modified category.
When the coronavirus pandemic caused the cancellation of the FIA European Drag Racing Championship for the second consecutive year, David Vegter and his team Vegter Pro Mod Racing seized the opportunity to enter the Summit Racing Scandinavian Nationals at Tierp Arena, mid-August. With 17 entrants from five countries and counting for the EDRS Pro Series, EDRS Bilsport Pro Mod Series and the Swedish Pro Modified Championship, the race at Tierp Arena promised to be a great meeting. After a 2-year break, it was immediately loud and clear that Vegter and his team were well prepared for the meeting. On his second run the Dutch driver and his ’67 Camaro recorded a great 5.941 seconds. Among the Swedish Pro Mod home favourites, that was good enough to claim the number six qualifying position.
In the first round of eliminations Vegter improved to a great 5.92 seconds, defeated the French driver Jean Dulamon and advanced to the quarter finals, where he had to face multiple FIA European champion Michael Gullqvist. In the quarter finals it was the notorious 2-dollar part that ruined Vegter’s chances. A small part that hardly ever breaks, broke down in the burn out, causing the oil pressure to drop. To prevent further damage, Vegter turned off the engine of the Camaro. Although he was very disappointed, it was the right decision because making the run would have caused severe and probably fatal engine damage.
In the second weekend of September Vegter Pro Mod Racing travelled to Santa Pod Raceway for the Euro Finals Shootout. This race for the Motorsport UK Championship was not only a good opportunity to face the British competition, but also Jean Dulamon from France and Swiss Pro Mod veteran Bruno Bader. On his third qualifying pass Vegter immediately shook up the competition by recording 5.87 seconds and claiming the number one qualifying position. In the eliminations the Dutch driver proved that he could improve on this performance by coming close to his 5.804 second personal best.
In the first round of eliminations Vegter improved to 5.86 seconds to defeat Jon Webster. On another great semi-final run against Kevin Slyfield, Vegter improved to 5.85 seconds, putting the second British driver on the trailer. In the final the Dutchman had to face Bader as the Swiss driver advanced to the final after recording two personal bests in the quarter and semi-finals. With a reaction time of 0.017 seconds for Bader and 0.018 seconds for Vegter, the two drivers left the line almost at the same time. After a few meters Vegter pulled away and it looked like he would claim the win. But 100 meters before the finish line the flexplate, the connection between the motor and the converter, of Vegter’s Camaro broke. The Camaro immediately lost speed and Bader was able to pass the Dutchman just before they crossed the finish line, claiming the win with 5.91 seconds against 5.95 seconds for Vegter. The top speed of the Camaro showed the problem as that was 226 mph (363 km/h) in the final, while Vegter used to cross the finish line in 243 mph (391 km/h). Vegter was of course very disappointed, but claiming the runner-up position and looking at the numbers they recorded, the team could still be satisfied.
But the major blow came after the event. Where Vegter was afraid for became reality as the broken flexplate had caused severe damage. The blower had come loose from the engine and the flexplate parts had damaged several other parts, including a tube of the chassis. The team will send the blower back to the United States for a check and there is lot of work to be done by the team in the next couple of weeks.
But once again, Vegter and his team proved that even after a 2 year coronavirus pandemic break, they are ready to face the European frontrunners. When the lights turn green for the first round of the FIA European Pro Modified Championship in May 2022, they all know that Vegter Pro Mod Racing are a force to be reckoned with.
Vegter Pro Mod Racing are also on Instagram as vegterpromodracing and Facebook as Vegter Pro Mod Racing.
Photos © Julian Hunt.
20th September: Thanks to former photo editor Roger Gorringe for letting us know his report on the Euro Finals Shootout written for DragRaceCanada.com, for which Roger is European Drag Racing correspondent, can be seen online by clicking on this link.
M&Ms at Euros.
20th September: Many thanks to Dave Turner of M&M Racing for sending a report on brother Mark's race at the Euro Finals Shootout in his and Michelle's Super Pro ET Toyota Supra:
So, it’s been a little while since we updated the goings on at M&M racing. After the STP Summer Nationals, we set about making a plan to get some consistency in the combination. To this end, as we now met the 8.99 or quicker criteria for Super Pro ET, we wanted to focus on getting the crew and driver dialled in. At the STP Green light Nationals, Saturday was disappointingly wet, so we only got one qualifying run, but a solid 8.75 netted us 9th position. This pitted us against Ashley Bell in his ex-Scandinavian Pro stock Pontiac. Unfortunately, a red light put pay to our weekend and after packing everything away ready for the ride home, we started thinking about how to get Mark dialled into the tree! After some head scratching and research, a new trans-brake button was purchased and fitted to the car in time for the Euro Finals Shootout.
What a great meeting this was, Friday dawned wet, and we couldn’t get all the scheduled runs in but, thanks to the efforts of the amazing crew at Santa pod, we were able to run 2 qualifiers. The first of was disqualified due to yours truly touching the car after the blue line (Oops). We spent Friday evening attempting to dial in the new trans-brake button to see if we could slow down the release and gain fractions of a second on the reaction, we needed some advice… a fellow racer perhaps? This led us to talk with Ian Brown and his crew. This had us hatching a plan with Ian and his team to run a Saturday morning qualifier against Ian in his car, us in our ex-Burt Englefield Supra and Ian alongside in the ex-Gordon Appleton Camaro. This was as a little nod to history as both cars were originally campaigned in the early/mid 90’s Pro Modified championships (well spotted Darryl).
At the end of Saturday's qualifying, we were sitting 14th out of 25 and a first-round pairing against Mick Howling’s dragster, with everyone knowing exactly what they had to do we pulled round for our race Mark performed a great burnout and was backed up into his tyre tracks just right. I pulled him into stage (keeping my hands well out of the way of the car) and Mark edged forwards ready for the run. The lights ran down, and we had another cherry left on the tree. We also ran 0.04 under our dial in, recording our fastest run of the weekend with an 8.69! We drove down to the shutdown area to pick the car up after the run only to find Mark was walking back beating himself up about the red-light situation.
Once back in the pit we started to discuss what was going to happen as this was supposed to have been our last meeting of the year. The decision was made to leave the car and trailer at the track and come back down for the STP National Finals. So, this is where we are Mark and Michelle are going to travel down to the track on Friday morning to run the Supra at the Friday test session to get Mark some more seat time and get him dialled into the tree. See if he can work out the Yips and not have the cherry blues over the long winter.
Mark and Michelle wanted to say thanks to all the team who helping at the Euro Finals Shootout Dave, Kieran B and Tom Pawski, also to all the drivers and teams for all their help and support just proving what a great sport drag racing is.
Pictures courtesy of George Martin and Trevor Owens.
16th September: We were sorry to hear from Chris Hannam of Cannon Engineering of the death of team member Dale Edmonds:
"We have been asked by the family of Dale Edmonds of DRE Carbon Composites to sadly announce that Dale passed away peacefully in the early hours of Monday 13th September at Sobell House Hospice, Oxford. For over 30 years, Dale ran DRE and in that time he has contributed his skills to many drag racing cars and bikes, from street driven vehicles to Pro Mod cars, and many historic circuit racing cars from the UK, Europe and USA. He also spent time helping out cars on race weekends, to name a few Nigel Payne, Paul Mander, Ray Turner and recently being part of the Cannon Motorsports team of Neil Midgley.
"Dale was a brilliant and loving Son, Dad, and Grampy, that we know will be sadly missed by all". We at Eurodragster.com send our deepest condolences to Dale and his team mates, friends and family.
Hot Rod Drags Gasser Circus preview.
16th September: Many thanks to Nick Brooke Langham for sending us a preview of the Gasser Circus's entry for the NSRA Hot Rod Drags this weekend:
The fast approaching weekend of the NSRA Hot Rod Drags marks the conclusion of the 2021 Gasser Circus Showdown, it is the weekend that will see the new Champion crowned. The championship like previous years is finely poised with several drivers still in contention, with Nick Barnett in his B&G Racing Ford Falcon heading the standings. Nick only needs to progress a few rounds to secure the overall win, but we all know drag racing is never that simple or straightforward, especially when there are another 19 Gassers trying to beat you. Included in the 19 is the debut of Adam Kruczynski in his ‘Not So Mellow Yellow’ 55 Chevy.
It looks set to be another enthralling and exciting weekend of nose high racing, with 20 Gassers chasing one of the 16 places available in eliminations. Hosting this weekend is a great achievement for all involved. As it was only a few months ago when none of us knew if we would be able to race this year, let alone be able to conclude a season of Drag Racing.
All Drag Racers are so grateful for the determination of the team at Santa Pod and the Gasser Circus will salute you all the best way possible, by racing hard and putting on a performance worthy of the ‘Big Top’.
Make sure you visit us in the pits and get up close to the cars that pay tribute to the mid-60s Gasser Wars.
Gasser Circus – Racing the Dream.
Look out tomorrow for Eurodragster.com's coverage of the NSRA Hot Rod Drags at this link.
EDRS Champions crowned.
16th September: In a triptych of season ending races in the last two weeks, the final points were fought over by racers in the Summit Racing EDRS series.
In Haapsalu Dragway, Estonia about 60 teams gathered at Haapsalu Raceway on 4th-5th September to end Estonia’s drag racing season. Two days of fantastic racing with teams from Finland, Latvia and of course Estonia. You can read a report by our good friend Lena Perés on the event at this link.
Last weekend 10th-12th September the Finland Finals took place at Kauhava Raceway. Only one qualifying round was able to be completed on a very slippery and damp track so qualifying points only were awarded. The EDRS web site contains pictures and a report at this link.
Likewise at Gardermoen Raceway in Norway the weather was not on racers' or organisers' side and the race was called to a halt after Hans Olav Olstad's accident. Lena reported at this link that "It was certainly not the best ending of a shortened season, but things happen and the weather is something that no-one can do anything about. The track crew did whatever they could to offer racers and spectators some great racing during the weekend, Friday did show some good qualifying rounds and in total there was 140 drivers and riders who produced 649 timeslips.
Congratulations to the 2021 EDRS and EDRS Pro Champions, for which you can see detailed points for at this link:
Pro Modified (EDRS Pro): Michael Gullqvist (Swe)
Top Doorslammer: Stefan Carlsson (Swe) (pictured right, top)
Competition Eliminator (EDRS Pro): Niklas Heikkilä
Pro Street: Seppo Raussi (Fin) (pictured right)
Pro Street (EDRS Pro): Michael Maderer (Ger)
Street: Lars Erik Persson (Swe)
Stock/Super Stock: Theodor Brandt (Swe)
Stock/Super Stock (EDRS Pro): Thomas Strand (Swe)
Super Comp: Mikael Nilsson (Swe)
Super Gas: Håkan Mattsson (Swe)
Super Street: Åke Törnqvist (Swe)
Super Pro ET: Mikael Nilsson (Swe)
Pro ET: John Thidé (Swe)
Junior Dragster: Victor Barstad (Nor)
Super Comp Bike: Peter Östlund (Swe)
Super Gas Bike: Mikkel Jensen (Dk)
Street Bike: Otto Eralahde (Fin)
Junior Drag Bike: Riku Polla (Fin)
Doorslammer Tour Finals.
16th September: The Doorslammer Tour series, conducted at Hudiksvall Raceway and Malmö Raceway in Sweden, had an entry of 68 cars in its finals at Hudiksvall last weekend, however the excellent traction was an incentive for quicker cars to enter with eight in Top Doorslammer, four in Super Pro Street and a sizeable number in Test & Tune. This report will concentrate on three of the classes, however you can see full results at this link by clicking on Doorslammer Tour Finals 2021:
Qualifying in Top Doorslammer went as follows:
Tommy Abrahamsson (above left) dominated Super Pro Street by qualifying #1 with a 4.4599/251.98kph pass in his '67 Camaro. He went on to defeat Lars-åke Söderlund ('55 Chevy) in round 1 of eliminations, and Johan Hedman (Pontiac Trans Am) in the final, Tommy running a 4.412/254 to Johan's 4.706/241.
In Stock/Super Stock expat Brit Carla Pittau qualified #2 with a -0,8450 but lost to Åke Hedberg in round one. Eventual winner was Jonas Bengtsson.
Photos courtesy and © Cenneth Schiller
Apache A is retiring.
16th September: Tim Garlick has confirmed the information we relayed about Apache's long serving 'A' engine which has been retired after the Euro Finals Shootout:
"Just a simple thank you to Rob and Nick at I.C.E. for building this bullet and educating both myself and the team to run it for almost 8 years, completely unscathed!
"It still has the original Bryant crank which we believe is approaching 100 passes. A string of low sixes and a couple of fives. Amazing engine, amazing crew.
"For simplicity we call this engine “A”, engine “B” is built and engine “C” is on its way, but that’s another story…"
Euro Finals Shootout bike class racer comments.
15th September: Many thanks to all those who posted their thoughts to us or on social media, we have collected those or commented on all the bike classes:
Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike was as so many times before dominated by Steve Woollatt (below left), three faultless runs in qualifying and then, after winning the semi final following Allan Davies red lighting, ran low ET of the meeting for TFB in the final, 6.182/223.
Engineer and bike owner for Al Smith (above right), Phil Baimbridge wrote "The Euro Finals Shootout TFB field epitomised why fuel bike racing is my passion. The four bike field included an in-line 4 (Steve Woollatt), the Rocket, an OHC V twin (Neil Midgley) and a “staggered” push rod parallel twin (Allan Davies).
"The PBR team (Al Smith, Joo Smith, Neill Curtis, Andy Kirk and I) entered the pre-event test day as well as the race meeting. Stopping the motor hurting itself had cost us a lot of HP which we had to retrieve – so the plan was to step up (ignition and percentage) and adjust the fuel system to try and keep the motor firing through the second half – for which we needed as many passes as possible".
In testing Al ran 6.942/145mph and 6.68s with a misfire. However for qualifying the team raised the nitro percentage from 83% to 88% resulting in a harder leave but tyre spin in Q1, and after gearing and clutch adjustment, went into tyre shake but achieved a 1.02 60ft time, the quickest of the event for the class. The last qualifier was effectively lost to a lack of compressed air. Work on the engine to regrind valve seats caused the team to have a late Saturday night.
In the first round of eliminations the new setup worked on throughout qualifying paid off with a 6.335/201.7mph, Al getting off the line quicker than Neil Midgley and beating his 6.41/186. However the team was unable to make the final after a dropped valve seat insert – a disappointing conclusion for the team but with distinct progress on power. You can read more at Phil's Facebook page and his web site. The team thank their sponsors (Burlow Engineering, FIE, APE & B&J) for their support and their thoughts are with Hans-Olav Olstad and his family, following his accident at Gardermoen (he came through his operation well and is now at the start of a long convalescence - Editor).
After a major engine rebuild Allan Davies was in test mode but reported that by the end of the meeting the team had cured the off line misfire on his fuel bike that had slowed it to 8.1s.
Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike was a fairy tale weekend for two riders. Jake Mechaell on his self built machine (below left) had impressed on its debut, and with a new engine and chassis tweaks for this event, he took the performance to a new level running running his first six in the final qualifying session and winning the event over defending champion and 2021 points leader Steve Venables.
Donna Anderson wrote: Wow...what a weekend! Jake only went and won the Euro Finals! He made great progress on his self made Super Street Bike joining the 200mph club and 6 second club. He qualified 2nd yesterday, then got through eliminations today leading to the final against Steve Venables. There may have been a few screams and tears when he won the final, and we are all very proud of him. What an achievement in your first SSB season!
The other fairy tale is Alan Morrison Jnr (above right) who was second with a 6.98/210 until the fifth session but came off the bike. The incident and his subsequent appearance in the final qualifying session has been posted on Youtube by Santa Pod. Craig Wright wrote: "Some boy Alan Morrison Jnr, we had our hearts in our throats watching on bro, but you just brushed it off like it was nothing, in his words "Well, it was just an inconvenience. What A Guy."
Cudos must go to Matte Bohlin, the sole racer from Sweden who braved the travel restrictions and ran an out of the trailer 7.045/211 to top the standings in session 1 but wasn't able to improve on it.
Garry Bowe was back on track after two years and got back to his performance bests, at 6.959/203, just short of his PBs and going one round before being defeated by Steve Venables, 6.833/218.97 (a new ACU record for speed) to 7.095/175. Steve said of his defeat to Jake (7.069/206 to Jake's 7.009/208) "I carried the front through first and second, was equal with Jake but hit the rev limiter in fourth which lost me the race by 0.03 of a second".
Leeks Landscape Funny Bike had the addition of two Pro Stock Bikes of Maurice Bertrand from France and Martin Bishop who was running for the first time in two years. Maurice went to the top of the standings in Q1 and then Tony Clark ran a 7.19/185 on the Phil Crossley machine (below right) to go #1 for the rest of qualifying improving to the bike's best of 7.096 in session 4.
Stu Crane ran at the start of qualifying but was not able to come back, and Warpspeed Racing focused on Mark Smith who was on a new turbo machine (above left) following some bad damage at the Summer Nationals. Mark defeated Martin Bishop with a 7.15/185 in round one, had a bye in round two after Tony Clark's engine had let go and ran a fantastic 6.971/191 in the final after Maurice couldn't start. An account of Mark's great weekend is at blog page.
Roger Moore had qualified with his best on a Funny Bike of 7.675/168. Lucy Moore wrote: "Our first competitive event in Funny bike was halted when we broke on the test day back at the Summer nationals. This meant the euro finals was an important event for us to get some track time and qualify for the event. After 2 runs on Friday and 3 on Saturday we finished qualifying in 6th and without any damage (hooray!). One of the runs was very close to a PB! "Unfortunately a technical mishap meant the bike had already shifted into top gear before the launch in the first round of eliminations. However I don’t think we could have matched the storming run by Light Speed Drag Racing anyway!
"It was a fantastic weekend and a lot has been learnt. Thanks to all the friendly faces in the bike pits for your continued encouragement and laughs. We look forward to sharing some drinks with you all. Fingers crossed for some even better runs at the National finals in 2 weeks A big Thankyou to Bob & Debs as always for their continued support."
Lorcan Parnell and the Storm Drag Bike team suffered loss of boost, you can read the account of their trials and tribulations at their excellent blog page.
Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike racer Louis Davies (below left) was no. 1 qualifier with 7.164/178 and won Comp bike with a 7.001 PB to Jordan Kenway's 8.094/163, also a PB and with two ex junior bikers meeting in the final.. Jeff Kenway wrote " I can’t believe we got to another final and ran a PB we can’t wait for the next round well done Louis Davies on the win, it’s well deserved. Thanks to some great people for helping us get down the track Mark Hope, Stuart Crane, Jake Mechaell and Mark Smith for helping us with our clutch setup. After trying to ride the bike up to scrutineering on Thursday and giving up after twenty feet I am even more in awe of how Jordan can ride".
Chis Neary (above right) had run a PB in Friday qualifying of 7.646/181 and in round 1 defeated John McLean Snr who ran a PB of 8.0881/157.41 in Saturday qualifying. There was attrition in the class however, John McLean Jnr's engine was in pieces after his final qualifying run, having run a PB of 7.8204/169.82 on Friday, Paul Hambidge had gearbox issues and Sean Mills also didn't show for round 1.
JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike winner Joe Elliott (below left) who crewed for SSB racer Steve Mead as well as riding his own bike "Had a awesome weekend at the biggest drag racing event of the year which 8.50 bike doesn't normally compete at so probably a one off experience with a personal best time, a wheelie, winning the event and helping out in between in the best class Super Street Bike which had all time low bump spot to get in the show.
Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike racer Phil Harrison (above right) sent us his thoughts on his first ever event win in 9.50 bike:
"Friday was a slow start, a 9.88 was OK, but well off our previous best times of 9.55 and 9.59. Saturday started better, after Q2 we were in third with a decent 9.58. We were battling with Martin Hallett for third place in the championship, and before the final run (and our first ever night run) he stated that he didn't want #3 in qualifying, due to #4 getting an effective bye against Brett Cordelle who had destroyed his clutch and was not going to make eliminations. Well, Martin went right ahead to take #3 with a 9.56 giving us the bye in E1.
"To ensure we had enough nitrous should the impossible happen and we went all the way to the finals, we decided to make our bye in E1 a no nitrous pass with the intention of just doing a launch to get our hand in, but the launch felt good do I stayed with it for a nice clean 9.89 - a PB for a no nitrous pass. In E2 we were up against one of the two big dogs, Craig Wright. Craig is a merciless competitor, so we knew our day was about to end... Except it didn't. We got off the line well and ran strong all the way, with Craig breaking out by the tiniest margin, losing to our 9.56. I simply couldn't believe it when I saw the win light in our lane - I was screaming through the whole shut down area. We were ecstatic, we were in the finals, and guaranteed our first trophy, but we were against Martin, boy was he making us work for the third place in the championship!
"The finals came around and I was telling myself in the staging lanes that we were just choosing the size of the trophy. The lights dropped and off we went. Just after the 1/8th Martin slowed and our win light came on. The impossible had happened - knowing that the gap he had to ride into was quite small if we were on a good pass had meant Martin had pulled a cherry...
"The job was done, we had taken our first event win. I simply can't describe how I felt, we had taken the ZZR from the junk yard to victory lane. We had a big dose of luck, but we were there. With Craig Wright and Richard Sawatzki both going out early this means the championship has closed right up. While it's a long shot, the top four go into the national finals with a shot at the championship... That meant us too!
"Anyone who knows me knows I'm never lost for words, yet here I am... Lost for words. I'm humbled by the support we have received, especially from our competitors who were so pleased for us. For me, a particular highlight was Craig's son Harrison coming over to congratulate us. What a class, what a sport, Team special K are proud to be a part of it, and will give it our all in two weeks."
Thanks to Blood Cancer ET Bike co-ordinator Suze Morris and crew for winner Phil Pratt (below left) for her report on the class at the event:
"European Finals, not an event ET Bike would normally run at, but as one round of our 'double header' rounds at Greenlight Nationals had been dropped we found ourselves pitted alongside the track fence right on the 1000ft marker, and we had absolutely no complaints about that!
Qualifying on Friday was very much affected by rain, with only three of the scheduled five happening, with one of those being at the end of the day pulling into the burnout box in the dark (at which point Phil spotted a livestream camera being turned in his direction and went straight into "Flame & Thunder" mode, with a massive show-off, rolling burnout and then wondered why he ran his worst 60ft in years!
"At the end of Day 1, Phil and "Satan's Lady" were on the top of the pile. Saturday saw another 3 qualifying sessions on a hot and sunny day, Gary Hester taking over the top spot, and Paul Adams bumping us back down to 3rd. To be perfectly honest, we'd been all over the place during qualifying, but were happy to be in the top half of the field for eliminations.
"Sunday, RaceDay, and a tough first round pairing with Robbie Dobbie, and it was double breakouts, thankfully the win light coming on for us, despite running a 9.06 on a 9.10 dial-in (oops).
"Another tough one for round2 where Dave Grundy awaited, but gear issues for Dave meant another win light for "Satan's Lady".
After 'lucking' our way through the first two rounds, things came good for the semi final with Gary Hester... a 0.05 RT for Phil made the difference at the top end, with Gary breaking out trying to get past, and so it was that "Satan's Lady" found herself being refuelled ready for the most important mission of the day.... a Final against Michael Gooding.
"That Final round was "Mission Accomplished", with a best ever 0.0093 reaction time, a win light, and another trophy for the cabinet.
As always we'd like to say a massive thank you to all of the SPRC track crew and marshals who worked so hard over the 3 days, to the Boxlane Team, commentators and photographers for the awesome livestream and great pics. But the biggest thank you has to go to our classmates, I know I always say it, but the camaraderie in the ET Bike pits is second to none... you guys totally rock!
"So we head back in a little under 2 weeks time to do it all over again at the National Finals, with a huge field in the class for this final round, and, oh boy, that is going to be fun! We hope to see some of you there, thank you again for the support!"
Ollie King, Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike winner Hollie King's father wrote: "So the weekend's, done Hollie (above right) took the win in junior drag bike, a sharp learning curve for a first season, seeing as she's only just learnt to ride a bike this year. We are now where she can do a burnout, how to roll off if she needs to look for another racer, how to show true sportsmanship and, most importantly, win or lose, to have fun and enjoy it. It's not a opportunity everyone gets, and she's loving every second, not only on the track, but what racing and racers are truly about.
All the junior drag bike racers were on point this weekend, here's a insight to how close the qualifying numbers were over dial: 0.01, 0.03, 0.07, 0.09 and 0.15 for the five qualifiers. All of these kids are absolutely amazing a great weekend, well done to you all. And the crew at Santa Pod, as always, completely top of the game without them we couldn't all do what we love."
15th September: Happy Birthday and many happy returns to ten times FIM Top Fuel Bike champion as a rider, twice as a team owner, and ACU Championship Co-ordinator Ian King. Have a great day Ian, and see you soon at the 2021 British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala on 20th November.
Kieran has posted videos from Doorslammers to his Youtube channel. You will be able to see videos of the Pro Doorslammer, Street and Front Wheel Drive classes, and individual racer videos of Paweł Pietrzak (FWD), Al McSweeney (Street), Tom Atkinson, Billy Gane, Marc Huxley, Nic Williams (all Big Bracket), Darren Peart (Pro Doorslammer) and Richard Prydden (4 Cylinder). A video, with in-car footage, of Kieran's dad Kevin's Fraudster C20LET engined Mk1 Escort running its new PB of 7.66 has also been posted.
Veedubracing videographer Simon Letkey has been posting video of recent events, some incorporating interviews to his Youtube channel. Included are a Bug Jam walkabout, interviews with Alex 'Jesus' Leiserach about his 'Second Coming' VW Single Cab, Buzz Pattar with his Lamborghini Huracan, also footage of Mike Whittaker's V6 24v R32 powered VW Mk1 Caddy, the 1.9 TDI Seat Ibiza of Helder Pereira and highlights from Saturday at the 2021 Doorslammers.
Euro Finals Shootout car class racer comments.
14th September: Many thanks to all those who posted their thoughts to us or on social media, we have collected those or commented on all the car classes:
In the G2E Motorsports-sponsored Top Fuel, Ida Zetterström wowed us all with a 3.86 licensing pass, going on to defeat Susanne Callin in the final, 4.020/222 to 4.161/216.
She said on Facebook "A great ending to a great weekend, we got the license and won the Top Fuel shootout tonight after qualifying first on that killer 3.86 run and ended up taking home the win tonight in the final. We’re now on our way to the airport hotel to fly home to Åland tomorrow morning, gonna miss this team until next season - can’t wait to run a full FIA season with you guys next year!
"Major thanks to my great partners for backing me up and continuing to believe in me as I step into this new world of Top Fuel: Eklunds Bygg / Mstrand.ax, Cinderella Sverige, Lackcenter, Mekonomen Åland, TiAL Sport, Hansen Racing / Autoracing, and Klipphus 3".
Séan Bowe remarked "If only that blower belt had stayed intact...0.01 seconds quicker (3.03) and 4mph faster (282mph) to the 660ft markers than what Maja Udtian was on her 3.80 European Record run 2 years ago at the same event, in the same car. Big shame that the blower belt came off just past half track, otherwise we could have witnessed Europe's first 3.7-second run!" Ida will be one to watch in 2022 as she takes on the FIA Championship.
In Fuel Funny Car, also sponsored by G2E Motorsports Steve Ashdown was the winner despite traction issues with his car, issues shared by other racers in the class. Steve's low ET of the event in qualifying of 5.3114 was just ten thousandths of a second below Kevin Kent's round 1 time of 5.3115, these two being by far the quickest runs.
Shockwave team member Lee Webb wrote: It’s been a long ‘off season’ and acknowledged team members Dave Bryant, Marie Mills, Tim Parker, Tyler Arron Ashdown, Steve Brookman, Grace Roaf, Jeff Bosworth, Big John and of course Steve Ashdown. One big expenditure during the off season was a new rear axle and the John Force Racing-manufactured part was up to the awesome power from the nitro fuelled engine.
After taking home £3500 with a holeshot win over Kev Slyfield at the Doorslammers the previous week, Bruno Bader had sky high confidence going into the Euro Finals in Motorsport UK Pro Modified. He ran a qualifying pass of 6.097/227 to go straight to the top in session 1 and improved with a 6.065/228 in session 2. The rest of the field were at least a tenth behind, and many were suffering mechanical woes. It was only session three that eventual runner up David Vegter showed his performance potential with 5.876/243 and in the last session Nick Davies found form to go to a new PB ET of 5.944/246 leaving Bruno in third position despite improving to 5.957/233, close to his 2016 PB.
In round 1 of eliminations Bruno ran a new PB of 5.931/231 with a big lead over Jean Dulamon who had a wretched RT. Then in round 2 Bruno improved his PB to 5.920/236 to score a holeshot win over Nick Davies who himself had recorded a 5.885/245 PB. Then to complete his dream racing day, in the final Bruno ran his third PB in a row, 5.914/237 to defeat David Vegter, whose team had been desperate to win a trophy to look at during their upcoming quarantine and were close with a 5.951/226. Their reaction times were 0.0178 for Bruno and 0.183 for David. An outstanding final to cap a great elimination.
Nostalgia Funny Car had the pairing of Tim Garlick and Tony Betts who, with their team, worked hard on their cars to bring us a great show by going down the track five times each. Despite Tim winning all the matchups the cars were well matched performance-wise, the final being 6.11/229 to 6.22/236 in favour of Tim. After the event engine suppliers I.C.E. Automotive posted "Tim Garlick and the Apache team had some great match races with Tony Betts 'Venom' Funny Car. The last run on Sunday which was not only the best of the lot, but also the last pass for the team's trusty KB. Tim had us assemble an identical spare engine in 2018 and this will replace the original for 2022. After seven years in the car the original engine will now see service in the team's AA/FA project."
In Track Worx Competition Eliminator Williams Bros Racing had a hold on the whole field. Their racing operation is of such quality they are attracting ink from across the Pond, as an article in Race Pages Digital shows. 12 qualified cars made for a 16 car ladder and four rounds of racing. As Nic's new COPO Camaro ran a 8.47 in testing, officials had suggested his 9.40 FS/AA index from the NHRA was too soft and so an pre-event adjustment to 9.30 was agreed. Nic ran a 0.6984 under this new index in qualifying to go #1. Meanwhile brother Dan was scarcely less under his 10.70 index (NHRA index is 11.00) and was #2 with his Chevelle at -0.6269. Jordan Payne (SM/A) and Robin Orthodoxou (A/A) defended the traditional Comp Eliminator classes with -0.5381 and -0.4775 below their respective indexes of 7.99 and 7.45. Kev Jenkins suffered from a DD/AT index of 7.58 (same as NHRA) but, as you will see below, had personal satisfaction and the admiration of all who saw it at the end of qualifying.
In eliminations, Nic ran 8.6597, as this was 0.6403 below his index it got adjusted to 9.16. Nic can expect his index to be 9.26 in future as the -0.6403 prompts a permanent change to the index of 0.04. After receiving a red light against Dan in the final, Nic had the foresight not to run the COPO Camaro out the back door, as any more reduction in index would be a disadvantage in future and not just for the final race in 2021 where he has to defend his championship prospects from Jordan Payne .
Kev Jenkins, without the luxury of being able to run under the index, concentrated on his car's impressive performance. The consistency he displayed in Doorslammers (five consecutive 7.9s runs with a turbo four cylinder engine) was outstanding. He said "At Doorslammers we achieved consistency but for Euros the plan was to beat our PB of 7.86 at 173 mph. Well we blew the boost pipe off on one run and suffered with tyre shake in 2 runs but it all came together on the final qualifier with a new PB at every point of the run and a 7.66 at 175 mph!
"We qualified 8th out of 12 competitors but eliminations is always going to be a hard battle for us with our index being 7.58. For Round 1 drew No.2 Qualifier Dan Williams who can go 6 tenths under index so it was a very big ask! Anyway we went red but run a 7.82 at 172 mph and Dan went on to take the event win (Well Done Dan!)".
No doubt about it, the addition of Stock Super Stock has spiced up Competition Eliminator and has made racers more index-aware.
Ron Bartlett who is having a great year with his 105e Anglia in Peter Nee Super Pro ET, gave us some insight into the competitiveness in the championship: "Well what a weekend, top 3 in the championship all through to the semi finals. I felt I missed a chance not to get through but well done to Pel Norman and team with the awesome Shogun Capri. Pel said it was a long time coming and I know how that feels.
"Giles and Hartley have been unstoppable this year and Billy Gane on a charge puts me in 3rd place. Testing in the left lane Thursday to get my reaction time up to speed certainly done the trick on race day. 0.08, 0.003 and a 0.013. One quarter final, two semi finals and one event win so far this year has been awesome and couldn't do it with out my crew. The last two rounds with Hollie and Simon Eykyn working together to get car sorted, fantastic. Thanks to everyone for the encouragement, and the amount of well wishers from spectators was brill. Thanks to Callum for the Pictures. Tom Atkinson - did I mention the tyres?" (they're in the post - editor).
Ronnie Mercer's first win in Modurstang Pro ET followed a barrage of 10 runs in the 8.82-8.92 region, amazing consistency for a Ford Pop with nitrous. He was given many congratulations from his Pro ET and Outlaw Anglia peers for his achievements. Ronnie's 0.0097 light in the final was the main factor in the win over Lee Huxley. Team Annie crew member Jordan Amps said "What a great weekend it turned out to be for us! Through to the final against lee what an awesome race ! Well done to everyone in the pro ET class, think we can all safely say it’s been a great weekend for racing, track was great too!
Fast R Super Comp was won by Martin Curbishley, supported by Fix Auto of Martin's home Penzance in Cornwall who crewed for him and transported the car to Santa Pod. Martin had great lights in qualifying although struggled to remain over the class 8.90 index. In eliminations, the great lights continued, Martin stayed ahead of the competition on track, and his last two opponents Paul Hudson and Leah Kellett both broke out.
Carburettor supplier Tony Morris posted "Congratulations goes out to TMC/RDR team mate Martin Curbishley who took the win today in Super Comp at Santa Pod in the UK! Martin had Dave Gibbons of Rough Diamond Racing in the UK, our UK TMC representative, go through his Twin Blade Carburettor and rebuild it and prepared it for him for this weekend races!
You could have seen Andy Harrison's win in Dave Grady Super Gas coming in qualifying when he ran five consecutive 9.9s times in the Sierra, ending up in second place to Tim Adam. The class was at full strength with four past champions competing. In eliminations, Andy had three 0.0 RTs and in the final with Andy Dibley also cutting a great 0.06 light to Andy H's 0.02, he lifted the throttle at just the right time to get the double breakout win by 0.04s or half a car length.
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator had some pre-race attrition. Joe Stevens had suffered a blown turbo, Al Williamson's truck needing repair following a coming together with the wall, and several others with mechanical woes left six cars to compete. Mark Todd was the first to dial into the track with a 6.906 and 6.833, followed in the final session by Andy Bond to 6.859 alongside Mark.
Both of these six second 200+mph runners ran conservatively in round one, then Andy turned it back on in the semi against Al McSweeney, who himself ran a new PB of 7.73/179 but was defeated by Andy's 6.88/207 with a slower 60ft, as Mark, with a bye, found the limits after a quickest-of-all 1.10 60ft. The final had no burndown, but much anticipation of the first side by side SE six second pairing, however Mark's car broke traction early on and Andy went on to record a new class ET record of 6.826 with a jaw-dropping 212 terminal speed. Well done to Andy and crew chief Martin Kerr.
Purdie Hadfield in Lucas Oil Junior Dragster, showed the value of testing after going to the Friday of VW Action/Doorslammers. She posted on Facebook "How do you sum up a weekend as great as this (you can’t)? Started the weekend off with a rainy Friday! Ended the day qualified with an 0.06 light (playing it safe) but on Saturday I decided that wasn’t enough and pushed myself to pull a 0.004 light on the last qualifier(brave)! I was absolutely delighted that this put me in no.1 qualifier which I celebrated with quite a few rides on the waltzer.
"Moving onto Sunday, elimination day, I had Luke Mugridge first round and we both went red luckily for me he went red first, so I got the win! As I was no.1 qualifier that mean I got a bye second round meaning I went straight into the quarters where I raced Lola-Belle Kent, she red lit so I played it safe pulling a 0.2 reaction (see, I do know how to play it safe) then moving onto the dreaded semis Harley Darby and I had a really close race, with me winning on a hole shot anyway, I realised I had the current champion in the final, Harry Redshaw - how daunting! I decided I would be happy no matter what, but it didn’t stop there, Harry ended up handing me the win with a red light and both me and my car were excited and ended up running a 7.97 (where did that come from?).
"Anyway, the smile on my face could not be wiped off from the moment I saw that win light to the moment I’m writing this… I could not be happier with what I’ve achieved this weekend and I am so thankful for all the support of friends but mainly my Mum and Dad!! Seriously couldn’t do it without you And well done to Thomas Cook-Abbott for getting through to the semis… proud girlfriend
"Thank you so much Geoff Stilwell for sponsoring the juniors at this event, very generous. Anyway to wrap up this autobiography I’ve had such a good weekend and have a trophy to add to my shelf Thank you to all the Santa Pod Santa Pod Raceway crew and everyone there who made this weekend so enjoyable".
We were also touched by the appearance of two of the sport's personalities who suffered ill-health but undoubtedly view being at the track a big help to their recovery, blown altered racer Dave Grabham and radio broadcaster Nigel Fitzmaurice.
We'll be covering the bike classes tomorrow, come back then for more racer comments.
Euro Finals Shootout media.
14th September: As well as our own galleries by Julian and Diana which you can see in our Euro Finals Shootout coverage page you can see photo galleries of the race at the following links:
14th September: Many thanks to Outlaw Flat Four racer Alex 'Jesus' Leiserach for an update on his unique VW bay window pickup:
I was at Doorslammers and on the Saturday, Second Coming Single Cab took its first full passes down the track. It has been a five year build so it was pretty monumental to do a pass under full power.
The first pass was 11.01 @ 129mph, this was a big surprise to me, but not to Richie from RJ Volks Performance who has been tuning it. Second pass was an 11.2 but @ 142mph. I made an error after the burnout and left the line in second gear. The mph was very promising though. Third pass was 10.37 @ 136mph. Sadly we saw the fuel pressure drop by 25-30psi on the 2nd to 3rd gear shift way before the 1/8th mile. So to run such a number with it wounded was great. Sadly as I pulled off the track at the top end the missing methanol ignited.
The Fire Crew and marshals were amazing and I can't thank them enough for all they did, including offering me advice on how to make things easier in the future. The fire caused a fair bit of damage, which is pretty gutting considering I have only done three full passes on a brand new build. The main damage is the entire wiring loom and all the hoses and fittings need replacing.
To try to help fund the repairs, I am selling Tee's, Hoodies and Stickers which you can get from my on-line shop. As always I am documenting the rebuild on Facebook under 'Second Coming Single Cab' and an Instagram account @secondcomingsinglecab.
I am desperately trying to get it all fixed up before the end of the season, even just to do a test to know its all working before the winter. We are currently only running 16psi of boost and have over double that available to us. Our best 60ft so far is only a 1.7 as we are still getting to grips with the clutch management system. There is a lot more potential in the Single Cab and we look forward to racing a full season next year!
Euro Finals Shootout results.
13th September: Congratulations to the winners of the weekend's Euro Finals Shootout at Santa Pod Raceway held over the weekend 10th-12th September:
Top Fuel Dragster: Ida Zetterström 4.0205/222.35 def. Susanne Callin 4.1617/216.52
Fuel Funny Car: Steve Ashdown 10.6541/66.67 def. Kevin Kent 10.8732/57.32
Motorsport UK Pro Modified: Bruno Bader 5.9148/237.78 def. David Vegter 5.9511/226.78
Nostalgia Funny Car: Tim Garlick 6.1184/229.07 def. Tony Betts 6.2247/236.54
Track Worx Comp Eliminator: Dan Williams 11.0389/88.73 (10.46) Nic Williams 8.9639/118.63 (9.16) red
Fast R Super Comp: Martin Curbishley 9.1366/122.88 def. Leah Kellett 8.8951/154.21
Dave Grady Super Gas Shootout: Andy Harrison 9.8736/138.55 def. Andy Dibley 9.8710/146.73
Peter Nee Super Pro ET: Daniel Giles 7.4903/164.23 (7.36) def. Pel Norman 7.7372/176.39 (7.69)
Modurstang Pro ET: Ronnie Mercer 8.9274/142.46 (8.84) def.Lee Huxley 9.3063/139.06 (9.28)
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator: Andy Bond 6.8269/212.90 def. Mark Todd 15.3573/53.46
Lucas Oil Junior Dragster: Purdie Hadfield 7.9771/80.93 (8.07) def. Harry Redshaw 8.4682/76.80 (8.45)
Banks Night Club Top Fuel Bike: Steve Woollatt 6.1823/223.41 def. Al Smith, no-show
Taylors Trophy Super Street Bike: Jake Mechaell 7.0091/208.17 def. Steve Venables 7.0699/206.14
Leeks Landscapes Funny Bike: Mark Smith 6.9716/191.31 def. Bertrand Maurice, broke
Suzukiperformancespares.co.uk Comp Bike: Louis Davies 7.0015/186.66 def. Jordan Kenway 8.0948/163.10
JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike: Joe Elliott 8.5827/153.21 def. Alan Morrison 8.4938/146.68
Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike: Phil Harrison 9.6148/146.27 def. Martin Hallett 10.8750/85.06 red
Blood Cancer UK ET Bike: Phil Pratt 9.0839/143.82 def. Michael Gooding 9.2776/147.69
Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike: Hollie King 11.5379/48.53 (11.20) def. Meg Talbot 9.7818/66.62 (9.10)
Although two sessions of qualifying were lost to Friday morning rain, the remainder of the event was held under clear and sometimes sunny skies with temperatures conducive to personal bests and records. In particular it was great to see fuel classes represented and a larger field of Pro Modifieds, particularly European visitors, some of whom have had to quarantine on their return. We are truly grateful to them for visiting.
Subject to official ratification the following records were set. Congratulations to:
Motorsport UK Street Eliminator ET: Andy Bond 6.826
ACU Super Street Bike speed: Steve Venables 218.97
The following Santa Pod Raceway track records were set:
Street Eliminator ET: Andy Bond 6.8269
Super Street Bike speed: Steve Venables 218.97
Comp Bike ET: Louis Davies 7.0015
Many thanks to Andy Marrs who has updated his table of UK and European bests which you can check out by clicking here or clicking on Data, then UK European Bests at the top of any Eurodragster.com page.
Congratulations also to Super Pro ET racer Mick Howling who won the Eurodragster.com/Team Twister Perfect ET Award supported by Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield of £75, and Pro ET racer Mason Griffiths who was the winner of the Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award supported by Cath and Tig Napier, who received £50. Both awards have been reset to £50, and are next available at the STP National Finals.
Bob's Photo Finish Award of £50 each goes to the competitors in the closest race by distance, thanks to sponsor Bob Roberts for posting the award. Congratulations go to Pro ET racers Simon Fulton and Jon Giles who had a margin of 3 inches in round one (margin of victory 0.0013). We will be in touch with the winners in due course.
We were also proud to have presented cash awards, along with Lucas Oil Landspeed Racing Team 7707 t-shirts, to the winners and runners-up in Lucas Oil Junior Dragster and Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike courtesy of sponsor Geoff Stilwell.
Thanks to David Anniwell of the Santa Pod Timing Crew for sending us detailed timing data which we have posted to our timing data area which you can see by clicking on Data, then Timing Data at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Official results can be seen at Santa Pod's Official Results Site.
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power reports, results and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Please join Simon in thanking Julian and Diana for their hard work over the race weekend, and well done to the Santa Pod Raceway track crew for doing their usual fantastic job in providing a top-notch racing surface.
We look forward to publishing racer comments on the event tomorrow.
Melbourne Raceway’s Duck All prep 18th and 19th September.
13th September: Sponsor Lee Child of LA Racing Parts writes that this weekend’s Melbourne Raceway Duck All prep heads up cash weekend race has had some event updates since our last Eurodragster item:
We have increased the categories for the competition by two more:
Pro Small Tyre Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, maximum height 30 inches, maximum tread width 11 inches, interior removed.
Super Pro Comp: Pure competition vehicles, altereds, rear engine dragsters, front engine dragsters and funny cars, where the driver is seated in a central position in the vehicle.
The original categories still remain:
Pro AWD: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street AWD: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Rear Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Rear Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
Pro Front Wheel Drive: Modified, competition tyres, interior removed
Street Front Wheel Drive: Factory appearance, full interior
The prize fund has also increased with the support of VP Racing Fuels placing over £1000 worth of products shared to all the winners over both days which we really appreciate. Also Renegade Race Fuels will be awarding merchandise to all winners on both days.
With two days of separate eliminations, one on Saturday and another on Sunday , giving a driver a chance of winning £800 over the weekend, if they choose to run the whole weekend.
Based on a 16 car field the winner gets £400 in each category. In the event of numbers in each category not being fulfilled, there will be a reduced prize fund, for example in a 4 car category £150 and 8 car category £200. In event of the category exceeding 16 cars, the prize will go up from £400. Entry fees: Fees include driver entry to the duck all prep race with Run what you brung included, plus two crew tickets and free camping For the best deal, pre- enter, as entry will cost more on the day. Driver entry on Saturday 18th or Sunday 19th only is £115, weekend entry for both Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th is £200 Click to enter at this link. All there is now to do is to get entered! On Saturday night we have a live band and bar to make it a great weekend. Supporting this event will take the venue another step forward. Follow Duck all prep drag race competition Melbourne Raceway on Facebook
Hans Olav Olstad injured.
13th September: With thanks to his partner Maggis Margrethe Winther Nilsen for updating us, we have a report that Norwegian Super Twin racer Hans Olav Olstad was involved yesterday in an engine explosion at Gardermoen Raceway, Norway, yesterday from which he suffered severe injuries.
Hans Olav was flown to the Hospital with injuries to his face, chest and damage to one lung. He will undergo surgery today and know all of our readers will wish him well for a speedy recovery.
Stuart Bradbury elected to International Drag Racing Hall of Fame.
11th September: The Directors of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame are delighted to announce that the late Stuart Bradbury, our founding chairman, has been elected to membership of the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame, based at the Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing in Ocala, Florida.
‘Stu’, who died in July 2020, had been elected by general acclaim to membership of the British Hall of Fame in 2017. He becomes one of only five eminent individuals to hold membership of both British and International Halls of Fame, joining fellow dual members Sydney Allard and Dennis Priddle (UK) and Carl Olson and Don Garlits himself (USA).
Stu was appointed Chief Starter at Santa Pod Raceway in 1968 and served until the late 1980s. He joined several colleagues to establish the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame in 2006 and chaired the organisation until his death.
Stu’s wife and daughter, Bev and Genna, have said that they are “bowled over to hear the news of Stuart’s election into the International Hall of Fame. We feel very proud for him, and he would have been thrilled and honoured to receive this accolade. We’re grateful to the Hall of Fame selectors for bestowing this most special honour.”
Stuart’s induction into the International Hall of Fame will take place at its annual banquet, scheduled for Thursday 10th March in Gainesville, Florida. His fellow inductees on the occasion will be:
Tim Richards; and
NSRA previews Hot Rod Drags.
10th September: Many thanks to National Street Rod Association committee member Alan Martin for a preview of the NSRA Hot Rod Drags, now in its 33rd year:
Well, the countdown has begun. With only one week to go before the gates open on Friday 17th September for this year’s thirty third Hot Rod Drags at Santa Pod Raceway, an action packed weekend is certainly on the cards.
With record numbers of participants, the on track action courtesy of event regulars Outlaw Anglia, Gasser Circus, Wild Bunch and Supercharged Outlaw looks set to keep everyone on the edge of their seats. Add in three full days of pre ’73 RWYB action and regular exhibition runs from Julian Webb in the Split Second jet dragster, this promises to round off this year’s hot rod season in style.
With restrictions now eased, we are pleased to announce the return of live bands, with Skabucks taking the stage on Friday night and Eastwood doing the honours on Saturday. Also back this year is the hourly courtesy bus service on Saturday to the Rushden Lakes Centre for those in need of some alternative retail therapy or the chance of leisurely lunch.
There will of course be dedicated ‘show car’ parking for all pre ’73 vehicles, so don’t forget to pick up your pit side parking sticker from the NSRA checkpoint if you want to power park. You can browse the offerings from a host of suppliers in the nostalgia trade village and be sure to grab a bite to eat from the caterers on site and get some liquid refreshment at one of the track bars.
Of course the NSRA team will be on hand to answer any questions, not to mention sell you some club merchandise, in between making the selection for the NSRA ‘Dirty Dozen’ trophy pick. You can even renew your club membership, or sign up for the first time. Just ask for details.
Official Hot Rod Drags merchandise, including T shirts, mugs, posters and stickers will be available, but numbers are limited. When they’re gone, they’re gone.
This year, all tickets must be pre booked through the Santa Pod website, so just visit www.hotroddrags.com and all the information will be there. If you plan on putting the pedal to the metal and take part in the RWYB action, you need to book that online too but available slots are limited.
Stay safe but above all, have fun. We’ll see you at the track.
Mace win do.
10th September: Many thanks to Fast R Street winner Dave Mace for writing in with his account of his Doorslammers triumph, won last weekend after a personal best ET and a memorable final against Andy Bond:
"As the dust starts to settle after returning from Santa Pod's Doorslammer event, the enormity of our achievements has just begun to sink in. The weekend didn't start so well with a fueling issue slowing the car,the water pump then stopped working and a lost tyre pressure gauge, all in the first morning! Things improved,with the fueling issue resolved, a replacement fuse for the pump (phew!) and a kind soul had handed our gauge in to the ticket office(thank you!).
The elusive (for 5 years) 7 second pass finally came on Sunday in the semi's against our good friend Joe Stevens. To say it was emotional is an understatement and the monkey was finally off our back. The final and subsequent win against another good friend of ours,Mr Andy Bond will stay with us forever.Thats one each now, Andy!
I'd like to say a huge thankyou to: all of the Santa Pod crew, expecially Ian and Dave, we owe you some jelly tots! Andy, Luke and Kate Robinson, Nick and Rob at I.C.E, and finally my crew, Dan, my son, Joe Etridge and my beautiful lady, Pippa, without these guys none of this would be possible.
The whole meeting will take some beating, but Doorslammers 4 will be interesting, can't wait! In the meantime we hope to see you all at the Hot Rod Drags!
Apologies to Star Wars fans for the headline - editor.
Northern Spirit's lifted.
10th September: Many thanks to Northern Spirit Supercharged Outlaw racer Neil Townson who has confirmed the car, which had a torrid time at Dragstalgia, is being rebuilt:
Just to give you all an update about our incident at Dragstalgia 2021. Due to the car not handling well in 2019 (even though we ran a PB of 7.3) we carried out extensive modifications to rectify this problem during 2020. We ran the car at the Retro Show at Santa Pod and was very happy with all the modifications. The car handled very well.
We then went to the Dragstalgia meeting with high hopes of some good close racing with all our Supercharged Outlaw family. The first run was nice and straight with no dramas.The second run didn't go as well. About half track the body lifted and destroyed itself as it hit the rear wing. Unfortunately the body was destroyed and the rear of the car sustained heavy damage. Santa Pod safety crew did a fantastic job and made sure that I was OK.
After many discussions with Tracy and my Girls we have decided to rebuild the car. Yes, it will have a 1932 Ford body on it. I would like to take this opportunity to thank my family / crew and everyone else for their concern and support. I'll keep you posted.
Thanks to Pudgeys pictures for photos.
VP Racing Fuels Powers Winners at Doorslammers 2021.
10th September: Two VP-powered cars finished in the winner’s circle this past weekend at Doorslammers 2021 at Santa Pod Raceway.
Keith Herbert and Billy Gane both ran VP race fuel to claim OCS Group Big Bracket wins. Herbert 9.6131/124.50 (9.51) defeated Peter Lane on Saturday while Gane 8.5440/159.59 (8.52) held off Lee Huxley on Sunday. Huxley also runs on VP race fuel.
"It was great to be back supporting such a fantastic event," said Tom Davis, European Business Development Manager for VP Racing Fuels. "The venue was full and the racing was outstanding. It always adds an extra shine to proceedings when drivers running your product take the win."
VP was the headline sponsor of the event, which was postponed last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Doorslammers 2021 featured two straight days of non-stop racing and produced some compelling head-to-head battles.
"It was great to see VP back here … again," said Santa Pod Commerical Manager, Caroline Holden. "We are proud to sell the very best products on-site … it was a pleasure hosting them throughout the weekend."
Keith Herbert image courtesy and © Bob Roberts.
LS turbo into Cortina will go.
9th September: Many thanks to Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator racer James Murray for letting us know some developments on his sleeper Cortina Mk2 Estate:
"I was supposed to be racing in Street Eliminator this weekend at the Euro Finals, but despite burning the midnight oil for the last weeks, the Cortina isn't ready for racing yet.
"I've been doing a turbo LS upgrade to try to at least catch up with the Hales. However, I only fitted the new engine and gearbox yesterday and there's still lots to do. I'm now aiming for the National Finals.
"A piece of good news, Kieran Astley bought some fuel pumps from me just a couple of weeks ago and was successful in his thrash to get his turbo LS up and racing."
Euro Finals Shootout racer update.
8th September: Many thanks to to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for sending us details of track opening and signing on at this weekend's Euro Finals Shootout, 10th-12th September, including scrutineering times.
Pro cars and Junior Dragsters will have to sign on and scrutineer for this event, but those are the only car classes that are required to scrutineer.
If you have entered the test day on Thursday 9th September you will be allowed access to the track on Wednesday 8th within business hours 8am to 6pm. If you’re going to arrive later, please contact the track.
The main gates to the track will open at 08.00 on Thursday, 9th September 2021.
Thursday 9th September:
08.00 Signing on office opens / scrutineering, please see the class specific listing below
09.00-18.00 Scrutineering for bikes at the Scrutineering Building.
Friday 10th September:
07.30 Signing on open and scrutineering for bikes/Junior Dragster.
09.30 Track open for qualifying.
Saturday 11th September:
08.00 Signing on and scrutineering open.
09.30 Track open for qualifying/eliminations.
Sunday 12th September:
09.30 Track open for eliminations.
The Pro Car Scrutineering will be as follows:
Thursday 9th September (test & tune day)
09.00-14.00 Pro classes - in pits, 4 cars per hour:
09.00-11.45 Pro Mod (12 cars).
11.45-12.00 noon - Break.
12:00-12.45 Top Fuel (3 cars).
12.45-13.15 Nostalgia Funny Car (2 cars).
13.15-14.00 Fuel Funny Car (4 cars).
15.00-19.00 Junior Dragsters - in scrutineering building.
The detailed running orders and printable entry list can be seen in our event coverage page. Ian says "Please note there has been a small change to the running order there is an additional to ET bike qualifying session on Friday.
"Also note for Comp Eliminator Drivers, the FS/AA index has been lowered from the European Finals onwards to 9.30 seconds following discussions between the SPRC and the Driver/vehicle owner concerned".
G2E Motorsport partners with Santa Pod for TF and FC Shootouts.
8th September: Santa Pod Raceway is delighted to announce a new partnership with G2E Motorsport, part of the Go2 Engineering Group, that will support the G2E Motorsport Top Fuel Dragster and Fuel Funny Car Shootouts at this coming weekend’s major event, The Euro Finals Shootout.
G2E Motorsport is the culmination of bringing together the best and the brightest from the Go2 Engineering Group. As a partner of the group, G2E Motorsport develops, designs and manufactures high performance parts for a range of motorsports, developing everything from cylinder heads to differentials.
The Go2 Engineering Group is a one-stop engineering shop expanding by both acquisition and organic growth. It includes start-ups, such as G2E Motorsport, that specialise in specific sectors such as motorsports. The Group aims to be the ‘Go2’ destination for all engineering solutions from conceptual design through to production and testing.
The Group currently consists of nine acquired Partner businesses that include precision engineering specialists Alman Engineering, Bradon Engineering, Green Precision and Seychell Engineering. CV Precision Engineering supports jigs, fixtures and specialist tooling and the latest acquisition partner is Uniform Tooling which specialises in the plastic injection-moulding modification and repair market. Tech Projects and 316 Engineering are the fabrication, conveyor and material-handling specialists, with NDT Equipment Supplies supporting the non-destructive testing and calibration block market.
The G2E Motorsport Top Fuel Dragster and Fuel Funny Car Shootouts are scheduled to begin at Santa Pod this Friday, 10th September, at 6.30pm, with further morning and afternoon sessions following on Saturday and Sunday. Both the Go2 Engineering Group and G2E Motorsport are based locally to Santa Pod, with their headquarters in Wellingborough, NN8 2QE.
The Euro Finals Shootout takes place at Santa Pod Raceway, near Wellingborough (NN29 7XA) from Friday 10th to Sunday 12th September, 2021.
Event information is available at this link and tickets may be booked online at www.santapodtickets.com or by telephoning the Box Office at 01234 782828.
Euro Finals Shootout perfect awards.
8th September: £225 is up for grabs at this weekend's Euro Finals Shootout courtesy of Eurodragster.com and our sponsors.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 after it was won by Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator racer Nick Hale at the STP Greenlight Nationals. The money will be paid to the first racer at the event to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available in all classes during both qualifying and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Cath and Tig Napier of Modurstang Pro ET team Bad Habit Racing (racing this weekend in Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET). A special decal produced by Cath and Tig, and designed by Peter Walters, will be presented to the winner.
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On or from Eurodragster.com staff.
The Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supported by Andy Hadfield and the Twister Race Team has increased to £75 after it went unclaimed at the STP Greenlight Nationals. The money will be paid to the first racer at the event to run +0.000 on index or dial-in. The Perfect ET Award is available in Peter Nee Super Pro ET, Modurstang Pro ET, Hutchinson & Dibley Sportsman ET, B Fast R Super Comp, Dave Grady Super Gas Shootout, Lucas Oil Junior Dragster (eliminations only), JKE Race Works 8.50 Bike, Atlantic Fluid Tech 9.50 Bike, Blood Cancer UK ET Bike, and Eurodragster Junior Drag Bike. but will only be awarded for the first Perfect ET of the weekend. The Perfect ET Award is presented in association with Andy 'Fadster' Hadfield of the Twister Race Team.
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect ET Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On or from Eurodragster.com staff.
Bob's Photo Finish Award, which is presented in association with Eurodragster.com sponsor Bob Roberts, will award £50 each to the racers involved in the closest race of eliminations at this weekend's event.
The closest race will be decided upon distance rather than time since, for example, 0.001 seconds at 230 mph is further than 0.002 seconds at 110 mph. For this reason the official timing data will need to be consulted so the winners will be announced here on Eurodragster.com as soon as possible after the event and the winners will then be contacted for their preferred method of payment.
Bob's Photo Finish Award is open to all classes during eliminations only and although Eurodragster.com decals are not mandatory we would appreciate if it they are carried. Eurodragster.com decals are available in Signing On.
8th September: Thanks to Saturday OCS Group Big Bracket winner Keith Herbert who said "Mr Furyous would like to thank Santa Pod and all involved, including sponsors Williams Brothers Racing, for hosting a fantastic meeting.
Huge thanks to my awesome crew Jim, Anna Kyliegh, with guest appearances by Paulie, Dan and Paul 2, and of course my Fury who didn't miss a beat all weekend, can't wait for next year, thankyou.
Mosten Rock n' Race report.
8th September: Mosten Raceway in Denmark hosted its famed Race Day under a new name last weekend on 3rd-5th September. To reflect the reduction in racing activities in 2021 the event was renamed Rock n' Race. The superb weather and huge crowd compensated partly for the lower number of racers, and the track which had been relaid and well prepped was able to take some very quick times over the single-lane eighth mile. Our motorcycle pit reporter Mike Kraaij was able to attend and send us some notes and pictures:
Rikard Gustafsson on his immaculate Puma engined Top Fuel Bike (below left) was crowned King of Mosten again and ran a great 3.997/307.87KMH (190mph), the only drag bike that make a 3 second run at the event. Rikard holds the motorcycle track record at 3.96.
Stig Neergaard ran a 3.31/316.16 (196mph) in his top fueler (above right) - for a video of the pass by Kennet Christensen, click here. Mike said "It was a awesome run to witness close by, as he is storming by and just standing a few feet away at 330 on the grass, the earthquake rumble is unheard of".
Kars van den Belt won in Funny Bike with his turbocharged Honda (below left) and ran 4.72/250.46. Yannick Richard from France competed in Funny Bike with his Suzuki Hayabusa Turbocharged Super Street Bike (below right). Yannick managed a email@example.comKMH with big wheelies, looking for a good set-up. Dad Eric Richard and a couple of Pro Stock Bikes completed the field.
Marc van den Boer from Belgium brought his beautiful 120 CI nitro injected Super Twin (below left). He has changed his fuel injection setup and also has a new rear wheel with some other small changes. He was going great guns here before he dropped a cylinder at around 330", but still managed a best of firstname.lastname@example.org with incrementals showing the bike rolled out of stage at the start of the run. Before this run he was still looking to go straight, as the rear wheel set-up made him pull to the right, and he had to click off early every run before this one It was a shame that he dropped the cylinder, because the start looked promising.
The good thing is that he and the team have more data to work with, he had track time on a good track and the team made progress, A great father and son team, Jimmy is always there by Marc's side and is an very skilled welder and mechanic, the same as dad Marc. The van den Boers love to race at Mosten Rock n' Race and will be back for sure in 2022.
From Sweden in Top Fuel Bike Peter Ström ran on his immaculate inline 4 Supercharged Top Fuel Bike. Unfortunately Peter hit the barrier before the run photographed and although it did not look too good, he was fine. The only damage to the bike was the pulley holder and bracket which got scraped. Peter and his crew could fortunately repair the damage and he came back with an awesome run that same day. It was with great applause that all the spectators and crew cheered for him! What an great run he made, straight as an arrow. Well done to all involved and Peter for his awesome dragracing skills, it takes a lot to tame these powerfull beast of Dragbikes!
Super Twin Top Gas Racer Anders Jensen from Denmark brought his mighty Supercharged V-Twin and managed an email@example.comKMH.
Mike thanks the Mosten crew for track prep and took a photo of Mosten Crew with their chief Hans Hitz after the race (above right). All above pictures courtesy and & copy; Mike Kraaij at Kraaijmotorsportfotografie.
As well as Mike's write-ups and you can see photo galleries from Mosten Rock n' Race at these links:
8th September: Thanks to Top Fuel Bike racer René van den Berg whose team Shark Attack Drag Racing attended both the Malmö Winter Nats at the end of August with Mosten's Rock n' Race a week later, and sent us this report:
"On the weekend of August 28 there was an opportunity for us to race at Malmö Raceway in Sweden. Shark Attack therefore left the Netherlands for the north.
"René and Aswin le Noble were able to run here again after a year. It was a very good feeling to be on the track again! Both René and Aswin were able to make several passes. It was very nice to get the feeling of and being at one with your motorcycle again. This of course makes you want more and more!
"We the the crossing to Denmark from Malmö where to attend Mosten Rock n' Race in the weekend of 3 September. The team arrived there on Wednesday and Thursday was used to get the motorcycles ready again make to race for two days.
On Thursday evening, the team made preparations for Anouk Burgering to ride her Junior Drag Bike for the weekend. On Friday morning after the drivers' meeting, Anouk was the first to hit the track. This went very well after not driving for a year.
Aswin had some teething problems at times but other than that the runs went very well. René's runs (see video at this link) also went very well. All in all, we look back on two instructive weeks and many great experiences!
Special thanks to Viep Bloemen, Eurol Lubricants, Tijger Leathers and Do you see me.
Invitation to Flame & Thunder.
7th September: Many thanks to Santa Pod Raceway Events Manager James Forster for letting us know that SPR are now accepting applications by e-mail to this years Flame & Thunder Show:
Santa Pod Raceway are pleased to announce that we are now accepting applications to the end of season celebration event; Flame & Thunder on Saturday 30th October. We’re looking for a variety of cars proven to have ran 11.99 or quicker, and bikes that have ran 9.99 or quicker. This is an exhibition event so the quicker, louder, and the brighter the vehicle, the better! Big burnouts and wheels up launches are always a plus too in what is one of few opportunities to race under the lights. Spaces are limited so please be aware that we can’t accept every application, we have a limited number of spaces for each class to maximize variety!
To apply, please contact James on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01234 782828 with details on your car, current PB if it’s new to us, with an image.
VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers racer quotes, timing data, media.
7th September: Many thanks to those racers who have written in with their comments on the VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers or posted remarks on social media: Winner of the VP Racing Fuels Pro Doorslammer class Bruno Bader from Switzerland, returning to competition after rebuilding his Corvette following a 2018 accident at Alastaro, said "I'm happy to be back after three years, I hope we can make it a little bit faster for next week. I hope we will be at the Doorslammers next year and again for the next twenty or thirty years!"
Winner of the Front Wheel Drive class Andy Nicholls had a new Civic to dial in, with testing completed at a test day in July, and leaving his nine second Integra at home:
"What a great weekend, we only went and won it, get in! Doorslammers 2021, the best event there is in this country. I can't thank my son Matt Nicholls enough for the help over the weekend, we are slowly getting this new car dialed in with a pb of 9.2523/154.21 and without banging a lot of boost in, just enough to go round after round and running consistent mid nines.
"Paul Bargate said it could be my event and how right you was mate, thanks for the support and somewhere to sleep. Luke Stevenson, thanks to you and the Pod team for putting on a great weekend, it was amazing and I'm already looking forward to Doorslammers 2022. I need to get this Civic on some proper fuel and tyres, Chris Backshell, thanks for looking at the launch strategy with Matt. Kirsty Nicholls, thanks for the support and letting me do this even if its only to get the telly to yourself lol.
"Also thanks to Matt Hurlbut at Speed Factory, Luke at 4 Piston cylinder heads, James at IPG and thanks for the parts fcsrace.com, thanks Frank Rehak for the best driveshafts period, Lee Owen for the turbo although we will need to make it better for 2022 please. James Howarth for the turbo manifold top work as always, Dave Gammon for the PPG gear kit, is that better for you, Doorslammers FWD winner. Adam Buckley thanks for helping out when you're not playing with the big boys. Motec M800 still going strong Mark Harrison, 10 years now. Karl Hart, Lynn Chamberlain still using your bottom end and flywheel carbon clutch assembly, Kiel Priestman, thanks for the chassis, man, it's coming together.
"Anyway, finally nothing can take away missing dad and bro so this win is dedicated to them and I hope you enjoyed the win up there, jumping around."
Kev Jenkins, twice winner of the 4 Cylinder class of the Doorslammers, was delighted with the Fraudster's consistent and dominant performance over the course of the event, the Vauxhall powered Escort Mk1 a full second ahead of its competitors:
"The car performed faultlessly all weekend running more consistent then ever with five 7.9 second passes in a row. We had the unfortunate draw of facing our Crew Chief (and tuner!) Chris Todd in the first round but random pairings are what makes Doorslammers so great.
"We’d like to thank our sponsors who help us go racing - Vulcan Engineering, Burton Power, FCP Engineering, Ralloy Engineering, LA Racing Fuels, Kent Cams, Mk1Kieran, Pro-S-Fittings UK, Melliard’s Modern Custom Paint & Ladmu Chassis.
"Also a big thank you to the crew Chris Todd, Neil Melliard, Jo Peters, Alison Jenkins & Kieran Jenkins.
"We look forward to this weekends Euro Finals where we will start to turn it up a little bit!"
Semi finalist of Pro Doorslammer and Big Bracket participant John Tebenham was as enthusiastic as ever: "A whole lotta shaken going on, Elvis, my man. A great weekend, we just didn’t bring enough, I took a guess against Kev and I still stand by that as some times that tree runs so fast. With Kev who is an amazing racer, you have to do enough to win. In hindsight, we should have had a 6.2 car which is strange to say but quite easy to drive. Well done to Bruno, I always said he was going to win. We still have two cars in one piece so come and cheer us on at the Euros, hopefully we will leave Ronnie Redlight at home". The Crew Killer Pop was better behaved as well, after its antics at the Green Light Nationals. You can see an interview with John at Santa Pod's Motor Mouth FB channel.
Outlaw Street racer Owen Forrest summed up excellently what it's like to be a racer after following the sport as a fan: "When I was a kid, I had posters on my wall of cars doing this sort of stuff. I never dreamed I’d be able to it. I love to think events like Doorslammers at Santa Pod Raceway inspire those young kids now. We ARE the show. Thank you all the racers and Santa Pod for the event, and providing me with turning what I used to dream about into experiences".
Thanks to David Anniwell of the Santa Pod Timing Crew for sending us detailed timing data which we have posted to our timing data area which you can see by clicking on Data, then Timing Data at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Official results can be seen at Santa Pod's Official Results Site.
More media from the Doorslammers has been posted. As well as our event galleries you can see images at the following links:
7th September: The final round burndown Fast R Street between Dave Mace and Andy Bond has been a big talking point with a range of opinions from rule-setting to great entertainment value (ask the drivers about that). We've had mails and posts describing previous Santa Pod staging duels:
Pro Doorslammer racer Chris Orthodoxou wrote to say: "I wish I’d been there. It was a great meeting in 2019, when I got through to the last four in Pro Doorslammer with the Viper. Congrats to all the winners, I was watching the live Youtube stream all day Sunday from out in Kazakhstan where I’m working.
"Got to say, the pre-stage burn down in the final of Street car was a truly superb spectacle. I was on the edge of my seat, as I knew exactly what was going through the minds of Dave and Andy - having been there before myself. Many years ago, Pete Austin (pink Plymouth ‘Cuda) & I (blue Dodge Dart), got b*ll*cked by Ian Marshall for doing the exact same thing when we were in a semi-final in Pro ET. Great stuff!
"The burn-down is an exciting experience. The secret is to stay cool, never look across at the opponent and simply wait for his full stage bulb to glow. Then give it even another 10 or 15 seconds to go in yourself. But you need to be on the ball and ready to react very quickly, coz Ian will either hit the ‘go’ knob instantly or wait a few seconds himself as a little ‘punishment’ heheheheheee, so if you’re on a transbrake, you need to have your wits about you and have a heart rate monitor wired into the RacePak!"
Other burn downs remembered include Lex Joon and Leif Andreasson in 1998, remembered by Matthew Seamarks who asked if they were the last two people that Ian Marshall had to shut down for there burndown? You can see this burndown at this link.
More recently, there was a Top Methanol staging duel between Sandro Bellio (TMFC) and Manty Bugeja (TMD) at the 2019 FIA European Finals which you can see video of at this link. It didn't result in the car's being pushed back, but it was memorable as it was Manty's last race in the Mr Whippy team car before ceding the drive to Matthew Carrabott - and Manty came out on top in the relatively brief staging duel.
Special prize for Euro Finals Juniors.
7th September: With thanks to our sponsor Land Speed Racer and former Pro Stock Bike racer Geoff Stilwell of the Lucas Oil 7707 Land Speed Team, we are proud to announce the Eurodragster.com/BUA Motorsport special cash prize for Junior racers at the European Finals.
The winner of the race in each of Lucas Oil Junior Dragster and Eurodragster.com Junior Drag Bike will receive £150 cash in prize money, and the runner-up in each of these categories will receive £100 cash.
Eurodragster.com is very grateful to Geoff for funding the cash prize. Geoff said "The junior classes are the future of the sport and it's a pleasure to be able to give them a cash prize at a time of life when they are not yet earning a wage. Both categories are well supported by racers and their parents, and this prize is by way of a thank you, and well done, to all participants for their efforts".
Prize money will be handed out in cash at the conclusion of the meeting. If rain prevents finals being run, the cash prize will be held over to the next championship event when eliminations are able to be run to their completion.
Gladiator Colouring Competition.
7th September: Darren West of Power Race Graphics writes with details of a new colouring competition:
"Our colouring book brand RAD Design Lines is back with an exclusive FREE A3 colouring sheet featuring the Hawk Racing Toyota Gladiator funny car - available at this weekend’s Euro Finals Shootout at Santa Pod Raceway!
"These colouring sheets are only available at this event from the Hawk Racing pit and in limited number! So drop by the Gladiator team and pick one up before they are gone! For the chance to win a colouring book and a special prize from the Hawk Racing Gladiator team - just take them away, design and colour them up and post a picture on our RAD Design Lines social media pages on Facebook at this link and Instagram at @rad.designlines.
"We can't wait to see your amazing work! Car owners Mark and Jackie Hawkins and driver Jason Phelps will pick the best 3 entries with RAD Design Lines 'Doorslammers' colouring books going to all three and a special prize for the winner from Hawk Racing. Winners will be announced at the end of September and contacted.
"Stay tuned in to the RAD Design Lines pages on social media for news of the next drag racing themed colouring book release which will be launched in time for Christmas!"
ACU report and preview.
7th September: Many thanks to photojournalist Steve Moxley for letting us know that his report on the STP Greenlight Nationals and preview for the European Finals Shootout can be seen at the highlighted links.
Whilst Steve is unable to attend the European Finals Shootout, he will be posting a report of the event from his contacts with riders.
6th September: We were sorry to hear of the death of Dick Cruse, former Stones crew member, driver of their Hemi Hunter II and III and Starliner Top Alcohol Dragsters in the mid 1980s.
Andrea Morris writes: "It is with great sadness and disbelief that I am having to type this message to our drag racing friends both here and overseas.
"Sadly I have to announce that our old friend Dick Cruse passed away in a hospital in Cannes, South of France on Saturday 4th September 21. I had been in daily contact with the British Consulate in Marseille and on Friday it was decided by the doctors that there wasn't any hope. Dick had suffered a huge stroke following a series of events and his brain was far too damaged to save him.
"He had lived the past 20 plus years in his happy place in the South of France and that is where he will remain. Dick was a big part of the drag racing world and spent many happy years/decades with the Stones team, amongst others. Both crewing and driving for them and loving it. He also spent many years working at Santa Pod and loved his drag racing life.
"Thank you to Allan Bates for keeping this information private with me until I was ready to share. I managed to speak with Dick (phone held to his ear) giving him comfort as he was leaving this world. He passed peacefully two minutes after I said Goodbye. I am hoping that Dick has met up once more with his old buddy Stu Bradbury, drinking some Jack Daniels and remembering old times at the drag strip."
We send our deepest condolences to Dick's family and friends.
Picture courtesy and © Colin Donisthorpe
VP Racing Fuels Doorslammer results.
6th September: Congratulations to the winners of the VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers held at the weekend in conjunction with VW Action:
VP Racing Fuels Pro Doorslammer: Bruno Bader 6.0639/232.59 def. Kev Slyfield 6.0445/237.64
Fast R Street: Dave Mace 8.0702/165.52 def. Andy Bond NTR, stage foul.
Front Wheel Drive: Andy Nicholls 9.6777/153.12 def. Stephen Ray 10.4298/134.92
A-Plan Insurance 4 Cylinder:Kev Jenkins 7.9379/170.46 def. Andy Hughes 9.2044/153.72
Six Cylinder: Gary Gooding 7.9584/170.43 def. Jeff Ludgate 9.5322/135.22
OCS Group Big Bracket (Sunday): Billy Gane 8.5440/159.59 (8.52) def. Lee Huxley 9.6471/137.68 (9.60)
OCS Group Big Bracket (Saturday): Keith Herbert 9.6131/124.50 (9.51) RT 0.0370 def. Peter Lane 11.9059/110.71(11.80)
In the Fast R Street final, a four minute staging duel took place, starters Ian Marshall and Dave Warren eventually sending the cars back for them and their drivers to cool down. On the second attempt Dave went straight in, whilst Andy bumped over stage. To see the drama unfold go to this link from Santa Pod's live stream.
During the weekend there were many personal bests set, after some review of the race report, we found no less than 50 racers scored PBs. You can get the list (pdf format) at this link and congratulations to all those who improved on their previous PBs. There were no major incidents, but we commiserate with racers who suffered mechanical damage.
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers reports, results and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the Event Coverage link at the top of any Eurodragster.com page. Please join Simon in thanking Julian and Diana for their hard work over the race weekend, and many thanks to those who gave feedback on our coverage. You can see photos posted by Callum Pudge at this Facebook gallery,
Mark Windridge's tribute to Kevin Mortimer.
6th September: Thanks to Mark Windridge for letting us know about a special tribute to his close friend Kevin Mortimer at the NSRA Hot Rod Drags. "The next meeting for the Supercharged Outlaws is the Hot Rod Drags. I lost a very dear friend who was like an older brother to me during Covid, Kevin Mortimer from the Shy Talker team (a blown slingshot the ones who started fire burnouts again in the UK).
I have been asked by his wife Janet to spread some of his ashes at the track. Santa pod have given me permission to do this and I feel greatly honoured to do this. My son Aaron will be driving our car. If anyone wishes to pay their respects to Kev, then please watch our last run on Saturday.
Spitfire Raceway Drag and Drift this Saturday.
6th September: Spitfire Raceway in Perranporth, Cornwall, are proud to announce that VP Racing Fuels have increased the prize fund for this Saturday's Drag and Drift for the top 16 quickest runners on the 1/4 mile drag strip. All top 16 quickest riders and drivers will receive a VP Racing Fuels 20 litre jug and delux filler hose, VP Racing Fuels goody bag, and a bottle of VP Racing Fuels cool down.
Spitfire Raceway promoter Lee Child commented "We appreciate VP Racing Fuels' support and thank everyone involved in making this happen. VP Racing Fuels Madditives will also be on sale at the signing on office. There is £500 cash up for grabs for the quickest car on the 1/4 mile plus £250 for the runner up. Another £250 is up for grabs for the quickest stick shift car this Saturday 11th September".
You can see all the details for the Spitfire Raceway Drag and Drift with media links by going to our story on 19th August.
6th September: A very Happy Birthday to former Top Fuel and Super Twin Bike racer Roel Koedam who reaches the landmark age of 65 today. Have a great day Roel from all of us at Eurodragster.com.
For those who want to know the origins of the widely-used GMC 6-71 and what those numbers mean, we direct you towards a fascinating article at Mac's Motor City Garage.
Post-Greenlight Nationals points posted.
2nd September: Many thanks to Yvonne Tramm for forwarding the latest points standings in the UK National Drag Racing Championhips and SPRC Club Championships after the STP Greenlight Nationals. You can check out the UK and SPRC points on our points standing pages by clicking here, or by clicking the Points Standings link under News in the main menu above.
VW Action/VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers preview.
2nd September: This weekend, the traditional VW Action combines with VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers for an action packed race that is likely to spring a number of surprises. As before, Santa Pod have a formula for Doorslammer classes which enables a wide range of participants. Also, Friday will be very busy with not just open Doorslammers qualifying, but also the VW Run What Ya Brung which in the past has been the staple of VW Action, plus Outlaw Street action towards Round 4 of their championship. The Fireforce 3 Jet Funny Car of Martin Hill will be making passes down the SPR quarter mile on Saturday and Sunday.
The main action will be in Doorslammers though. With several qualifying sessions planned it will be a great opportunity for drivers to dial their cars into the track. Let's have a look at the classes and see which cars are the quickest and which are dark horses and new entries.
In VP Racing Fuels Pro Doorslammer, headlines will be made by Eurodragster.com sponsor Andy Robinson's Anger Management 2.0 Pro Mod Camaro (above left). A complete new build, Andy will be using the race as a test session to run the car with its tried and tested powerplant before the Euro Finals Shootout, where he will face the toughest UK Pro Mod field of the season. Of the other racers in the class, Kev Slyfield in the Blown Bird PM is the most experience runner having continued throughout the truncated 2020 season and can run low sixes almost at will.
Bruno Bader is a most welcome returnee having sat out the 2018-20 seasons and coming back at the Scandinavian Nationals at Tierp last month where he ran a best of 6.103. John Tebenham has hit the fives and promises he will "try to change the world of drag racing" in the next two events, but has a new crew chief and fewer crew as revealed in his most recent news item.
Other Pro Doorslammer runners will be entertaining and PBs will undoubtedly be run; a new car/driver combination we are looking forward to is Dave Smith who will be racing the ex-Jens Zimmerman Jaguar XKR for the first time (above right). This US car has run a best of 7.3 with its previous owner and we wouldn't be surprised to see it sorted and running the numbers very quickly.
In the FastR Street class, sponsored by FastR, supplier of bespoke teamwear apparel, there are three runners from Street Eliminator who will bring racing experience as well as quick cars to the event. Andy Bond has been running his Ugly Sister Chevy 210 (below left) with relatively soft launches this year which has improved consistency, whereas Al McSweeney has just hit the seven second bracket with his Volvo 162 and Joe Stevens has been in the sevens before too. These three are joined by multi championship winner Brian Pateman (who raced in the 1980s editions of Doorslammers) who is the possessor of a seven second time slip and has been using nitrous on recent runs. New drivers and cars to competition are Asim Hussain's Porsche 911 Turbo and Buzz Pattar's Lampoorghini (below right) which show an expansion of the sport to supercar enthusiats, and Chris Prendergast's new build late model Camaro SS.
The Front Wheel Drive class has a large field with several nine second runners. Ahmed Jamshaid's Civic (below left) ran 9.189/154 at the start of May. Allan Duthie's Corsa has been in the 9.4s and Andy Nicholls' Honda Integra hit the 9.5s in July, also Raggy Conversions' Craig Evans's (below right) chances are fancied by his test day peers. But as seen in the past mechanical stress and FWD traction issues can create huge upsets in this class, we remember Nicolas Hackiere in his Citroen AX in 2019 qualifying with a mid-ten and then really getting to grips with the track to run a succession of nines and get the win on Sunday.
The A-Plan Insurance 4 cylinder class at 31 entries is the largest class of the event. Kev Jenkins' Fraudster Escort Mk1 (below left) is the quickest runner and another racer whose recent runs have shown consistency as well as speed. Lee Connor's Lotus Elise has run in the eights, pro ET racer Gino Bernadine is a regular low nine second runner, whilst previous winner Chris Todd ran a 9.17/148 in June. Five others have been in the mid nines as well. Along with the FWD class, 4 cylinder can easily produce an upset winner.
The Six cylinder class is the province of Nissan GTRs, Toyota Supras and Golf VR6s which exclusively occupy the entry. Gary Gooding's Supra (above right) has a great performance pedigree having run in Street Eliminator and capable of mid sevens. Ian Cleminshaw's GTR R35 has run 8.2s at Elvington and he is hoping for a seven on the prepared surface at SPR. Jeff Ludgate and Mark Moseley are mid eight second runners, but the Sonic GTR of Mohammed Ali intrigues us, it has a stated power output of over 2000hp and could be a surprise if he can get it tuned into the track conditions.
The Williams Bros Big Bracket, being run separately on Saturday and Sunday, contains racers from a variety of classes with a few run what ya brung racers wanting to hone their racing skills. David Swift's AMX will be making its UK racing event debut, and we notice Jordan Payne has entered the Sticky Situation Corvette sponsored by VP Racing Fuels, to run in the bracket.
Jordan said "Bracket racing is something a bit different for us with the Corvette. The last time I took part in any form of bracket racing was in 2018 with my Junior Dragster! However with big money up for grabs this weekend we thought it’d be worth a shot.
We completed the standard between round maintenance, dropping the diaper to check the oil, completing a leakdown test etc, as well as treating the car to some polish and making a few setup changes in preparation for the weekend. These changes included adding and moving ballast around the car, installing a larger gurney flap to the rear wing, and also loading a softer tune into the MSD to put less stress on the motor. These changes will all likely slow the car down a little but should greatly benefit the cars consistency which is key at this upcoming event". You can't rule out Jordan's chances to win his sponsor VP Racing Fuels' bracket event.
Eurodragster.com will be present on each day of VW Action/VP Racing Fuels Doorslammers and you can follow all the action by going to our event coverage page.
Prize fund for Spitfire Raceway.
2nd September: Eurodragster.com sponsor Lee Child has announced that the Spitfire Raceway Drag and Drift event to be held on 11th September at Perranporth Airfield will have cash prizes for the quickest car on the drag strip (£500), the second quickest (£250) and the quickest stick shift car (£250).
Camping for racers is only £10 per night per head and kids go free, you can pre enter the drag racing or drifting online at this link first, then book your camping by calling 01872 552856. Any roll over credits from cancelled event please email Kevin@perranporthairfield.com.
Pictures © Andrew Johnson Photography A Show & Shine will be held with no charge after admission, and spectators can enter £10 per person under 16s go free, drag racing is from £10 after admission with crash helmet and full driving licence required.
All vehicles are welcome at Spitfire Raceway, Perranporth Airfield, Cornwall TR5 0XS. Gates open at 8am and track action, after a safety check and drag strip riders and drivers meeting at race control 10.45am, will be from 11am to 3pm.
For further details and media links go to our story on 19th August.
National Finals entry closes Friday.
1st September: Thanks to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for reminding us that the closing date for the STP National Finals to be held at Santa Pod Raceway closes this Friday, 3rd September. Entries received after this date will incur a surcharge.
The STP National Finals is the final round of the 2021 SPRC National Championship for Pro Modified, Competition Eliminator, Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Pro ET, Pro ET, Sportsman ET, Street Eliminator, Junior Dragster, Nostalgia Super Stock, Wild Bunch, VW Sportsman, VW Pro, Outlaw Flat Four, Top Fuel Bike, Pro Stock Bike, Super Street Bike, Funny Bike, Comp Bike, 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike, Supertwin Top Gas, ET Bike and Junior Drag Bike.
You can enter the event by going to this link. The current entry list is at this link.
ACU points updated.
1st September: The latest ACU/UK Championship positions have been updated on the King Racing web site.
ACU Championship Co-ordinator Ian King would like to congratulate all the winners especially Junior Drag Bike rookie Samuel Hope who not only qualified in P1 position but also won his first ever event at the first attempt.
Ian believes that he also made further history in joining his father Alex and grandfather Chris by becoming the first 3rd generation family of drag bike racers to have each won an event in ACU/UK Championship history. Congratulations Samuel!
Carla and Rick at the Mid Sweden Nats.
1st September: Many thanks to expat UK Stock/Super Stock racer now resident in Sweden Carla Pittau and partner and crew Rick McCann for a report on their successful race at Sundsvall last weekend. Carla describes their race as Hell, Hell and Heaven, or our Trials and Tribulations (but there is always a bit of heaven!).
The season started late for the Heaven & Hell team, as we preferred to wait until we were both vaccinated before socialising freely, but with so many meetings here in Sweden from which to choose, we still managed to enter five races between July and August, and had good hopes to put on a good show and have fun with our fellow racers in Stock/Super Stock.
After the Drag Racing Tour at Hudik Raceway at the beginning of July (see previous report on Eurodragster.com) all seemed to be ok with our engines, the numbers were slightly down but no cause for concern, so we did only a few mods on the ’70, mainly to try and better distribute the weight and improve the suspension reaction on the launch. We fitted a light weight lithium battery on advice from Peter Lindberg at PPM, then added the saved weight back in the trunk and decided to tune the front shocks at the track, hoping for better weight transfer and better grip.
The ’84 was a little sluggish, but we didn’t expect too much out of a “temporary” combination, while we wait to solve carburettor issues in the new combo, so we decided to continue on the quest by trying different carbs with different settings to see if we could pinpoint the best compromise on the air-fuel delivery.
So on the 22nd of July we showed up at the Mid Sweden Nats at Sundsvall Raceway, one of our favourite tracks in Sweden, where we have always been warmly welcomed. The track used to be a secret Air Force base during the cold war, and it is located on the top of a very steep hill (the famous transmission killer for many a towing vehicle!) and was then purchased by a group of drag racing enthusiasts and ran on a no-profit basis, who ran the meetings virtually on a break-even formula, just for the love of the sport! This obviously carries the danger of income not matching expenses, but somehow the guys and gals who look after the place manage to put up a good show every time, and be cheerful, helpful and fair to all. A real pleasure to race there. However things did not get off to a good start when the engine in ’70 would not turn over at all, the starter motor just stuttering and stopping. Of course the new battery was initially blamed (but was innocent!) and when we removed one of the plugs we saw what the problem was: water in cylinder no. 4… we removed all of the plugs and span the engine over, and water came out of virtually all cylinders… We took the heads off and inspected the gaskets, which did not show any signs of blowing, so we suspected the heads or the intake, or that, worst of all, the block could have developed some cracks. The ’70 was out of the race before she could even pass tech inspection, so we concentrated on the ’84. Regrettably the car did not seem to want to treat us, or the audience, to its spectacular launches, hesitating on the line and running slow.
With a flurry of suggestions (some good, some silly) from bystanders, we swapped carbs, checked valve lash, chased phantom ignition and fuel problems, but the car did not respond to any tuning, before finally revealing that the valve that Rick had to adjust was out again, and this was due to a broken roller on the lifter, which may have been sticking at first but broke and was duly ground to a paste during the following passes, damaging the camshaft and the block. Not exactly what we set out to achieve at this meeting: a no show in the first round and a no show at tech inspection!
We returned home with two broken cars, and to finish in style we suffered a blown tyre on the motorhome, (as always the inside one on the twin axle) and afterwards even ended up in one of the rare Swedish traffic jams, just to put the cherry on the cake. A real downer on our hopes, the Hell part of Heaven & Hell… No choice but to cancel both of our entries for the Drag Revival at Mantorp, which was to take place only 3 days after the end of the Mid Sweden Nats, a meeting in which the Swedish Championship in Stock Super Stock was going to be contested, and in which Carla would have had a chance to defend the title she earned in 2019 as the 2020 championship was cancelled due to the pandemic. Nothing to be done, except roll up our sleeves and get to work to repair the motors!
We stripped Rick’s engine, then Carla’s, and with some help from Mikael Lind and Raymond Karlsson with parts and pressure testing the heads, we proceeded to put Carla’s engine back together after lightly honing the block, having found no damage in heads, block, or intake. We couldn’t get the correct head gaskets, so we used the closest possible, which would very slightly reduce the compression, and managed to get it back in the ’70 with two days to spare before the Summit Racing Scandinavian Nationals.
Full of hope and some fear (!) we fired it up and it sounded great, crisp, responsive. We were going racing!
The ’70 wasn’t finished with the scares, though. On arrival at the track we tried to start the engine to go to tech inspection and it wouldn’t turn over, exactly as it had done at Sundsvall. We took no. 4 plug out with some trepidation, and water appeared to come out of the cylinder. At this point the clouds of despair were heaviest on the team: what did we miss, where was the damage we didn’t find, what the hell is going on… when Mikael Lind, appearing like a knight in shining armour, went “Sniff… sniff… it smells like fuel to me!” We checked the float bowls on the carb and the rear was empty! The needle and seat assembly must have stuck open at some point and the fuel siphoned off into the intake and found its way into cylinder no. 4 via an open intake valve… just to scare us!
We took all plugs off, span the engine to get all the fuel out, let it dry, put the plugs back in, made sure the needle and seat in the secondaries bowl was free, and got the car inspected. Phew!
Both Carla and the car performed well at this meeting, and we liked our chances when she qualified no. 10 with a 10.60 and went past Jimmy Arvidsson in the black ’66 Fairlane in the first round, then Lars Nyberg’s silver GT500 in the second with a 0.015 reaction to a -0.014. We really looked forward to the third round against Marcus Svensson, but the weather gods put an end to our hopes, and everyone else’s… the meeting was rained off, and we headed for home.
In the rainy days that followed we decided to reinstall the Pro Trans in Carla’s car, to see if we could find a little ET and better launches. The rain continued, on and off, and the day we were to leave for the Mid Sweden Finals at Sundsvall Raceway was wet, dark, and miserable. We loaded up and Carla insisted that we tow the trailer with the Suburban, so that the motorhome would not be too heavy going up the transmission killer hill, and that decision proved to be a very wise one, as during the journey the old trusty Winnebago started to miss and refuse to accelerate, and we stopped at the rest area off the E4 just outside Tierp. The curse seemed to be still in full swing… It sounded like ignition, so we inspected the plug leads, which looked fine, so before we resistance-tested them, we looked at the distributor cap, hoping we could just file off some corrosion and WD40 our way back to locomotion… As Rick removed it from the distributor, however, the spring on the coil contact inside the cap fell out in three pieces, the plastic housing around it more or less disintegrated under our eyes and the contact itself just fell out. No gaffer tape or WD40 was going to fix this one! But where on earth (well, in Uppsala län, anyway) could we find an HEI distributor cap for a 1997 big block Chevy?
We called good friend Erik Jansson, Super Gas racer who runs a workshop and auto parts shop in Östervåla, and although he didn’t have one he suggested we try Proffs Bildelar in Gävle, only about 50 km from where we stopped. We called Nisse at “Den lilla butiken med det stora sortimentet”, and sure enough, he had one. Had we not had the Suburban with us, it would have been a lot harder to organise, but as it was, (Carla is always right, even for the wrong reasons) we could just abandon the motorhome there, drive up to Gävle, get the cap, drive back, stick it on and drive back up the E4 again towards Sundsvall!
All went well, and as we drove north the road got drier and drier, the clouds disappeared, and a glorious sunshine finally accompanied the team in their drag racing quest. We were glad of our good fortune, but there must have been some Greek Gods fighting for our success and some fighting against it, as when we finally reached the famous Sundsvall Raceway hill in convoy, suddenly a shout from Rick came through the walkie talkie, which sounded more or less like “@#*CK/!!!”
Carla shouted back on the two-way, but there was no answer, so she stopped the rig and ran back to see what had happened, and her heart stopped when she saw the motorhome at 45 degrees in the ditch, with Rick desperately trying to get out. She recalled a small truck towing a horse box which had passed her like a train going in the opposite direction, without so much as slowing down to allow enough space in the very narrow dirt road, and knew what must have happened. It looked near impossible for Rick to get out of there, and Carla started pushing the Winnebago in pure desperation, while Rick attempted once again, in reverse, to get out of trouble. Trying to reverse out of it proved to be a better strategy, as little by little the motorhome managed to get back on the road. A quick inspection showed virtually no damage to the parts of the body that had literally embedded themselves in the dirt and weeds, and looking at the soft edge of the road revealed that the gravel and soil must have literally sank under the weight of the motorhome, maybe because of the copious rain in the previous days. We guessed that Athena, or Apollo, must have won against Zeus, Poseidon, or whoever wanted our demise on Mount Olympus…
Our heroes arrived at the track too late for the tech inspection, but so happy to have made it there, that it seemed that racing would be easy and relaxing by comparison!
It was lovely to see the track officials and our fellow racers at the track, the evening was sunny and clear, and all was well.
The qualifying started with a 10.56, a good improvement but not enough of a difference, but as Carla shifted a little late first to second, we hoped there would be more. Sure enough, the second run produced a 10.52, then a 10.50… Carla was number 1 qualifier! 1.04 seconds under index, but Thomas Strand in his gold ’72 LeMans and Theodor Brandt in the white Nova were breathing down her neck, though, with a 1.03 and 1.00 respectively under index and Thomas made this perfectly clear in a humorous way in the fire up road, miming “I’m watching you” with a menacing stare. This friendly rivalry is part of the fun in drag racing, especially as Thomas and his crew chief Magnus “Mankan” Lindahl have given us much good advice and help over the last couple of seasons, including during this meeting!
After each run the car has to be weighed to ensure that it complies with minimum weight, 1478 kg, and unfortunately it was found to be a kg short after the first one, despite adding weight. We had forgotten that the Pro Trans is lighter than an ordinary TH350! However, we added some more weight and were ok after that, although this didn’t stop the tech guys playing a prank on Carla by giving her a ticket that said 1464kg, and only turning it around to reveal the actual weight, 1483kg, after laughing at the dismayed expression on her face!!!
The fourth run got us a 10.48, over 1.06 seconds under index, and the number 1 this time was there to stay. Yay! A little bit of heaven! On race day all worked like clockwork, Carla was focused, cut good lights, and found herself in the final against Theodor Brandt. This young man is a much respected racer and is known for his consistent and fast reactions, so it was with some trepidation that Carla approached the staging lanes. We dialled 10.50 to Theodor’s 10.99, a 0.49 wait. The trepidation disappeared almost completely by attending to the routine checks on the car, putting on the safety equipment, and sitting quietly in the car, but panic ensued when the car would not start just when called forward by the track crew. A few frantic seconds pushing the ignition button, then the light came on and the starter motor came back to life, and the Camaro reached the burnout box.
In Carla’s words, this is the race that follows: "A quick burnout just to clean the tyres, all seems well, panic over, crawl to pre-stage, pump the brakes, bump it into stage… make sure the 2 step warning light is on… floor the throttle, stare at the bottom bulb… NOW! Let go of the brake and the rest of the world becomes invisible, the universe is enclosed in the cockpit of the rocket starting towards the sky, a nice wheelie, the shift light shines like an exploding tiny red firework, second gear, the engine sings, roars, tiny firework again, third gear, foot through the floor, the finish line approaches, I pass Theodor, I’m almost at the line, I tap the brakes, I know I definitely crossed the line first, I shift into neutral and switch off, coast to the end of the track, then just before the exit I switch back on, restart the engine and cruise to the scales. I don’t know if I won or not, if I broke out or not… only that I got there first, so I hope I didn’t run under 10.50…
At the scales they don’t know who has won, so we both get weighed and we are both legal, Theodor restarts and drives to the pits, I press the button… but nothing happens. The cut off switch is faulty, or broken, or the battery is gone, but there is no power… The chief tech inspector helps me check the most common causes, then we give up, he tells me that I can leave the car there and he gives me a lift back to the pits, where Rick has been waiting for me and has just got on the bike to see what the problem is. “Did I win?????” I shout as soon as I see him. “YEAH!” he shouts back. Sweet."
What a stroke of luck… the battery only died completely after the win! We killed it by putting the hold down strap over the re-start button, but whatever god or goddess was routing for us made sure it would last just long enough for us to collect our trophy.
The weekend ended on a high, and all the tribulations were forgotten, the heaven part of Heaven & Hell prevailed. We couldn’t have got to this victory without all of the people who supported us, on and off the track, and we would like to especially thank all the officials at Sundsvall Raceway, who went over and above the call of duty to make us feel at home and gave us an excellent track to race on, our fellow racers for being such fun, so friendly and so fair, in particular team Strand, for their friendship and advice (and for not taking the white Firebird to Sundsvall, which would doubtless have qualified number 1 instead of Carla’s Camaro…!) Mikael Lind, Raymond Karlsson, Erik Jansson, and finally our new part time crew members: Elisabeth Jonsson Viklund who crewed for us at the first Sundsvall meeting and cruised the pits looking for parts to try to solve Rick’s engine problems, and Susanna Sundberg, who joined the team for the Scandinavian Nationals at Tierp in her very first drag race meeting and took to it like a fish to water, learning about all aspects of racing with great enthusiasm and good humour, and then put up with the trials and tribulations on our way to the Mid Sweden Finals without panicking!
Photos courtesy and copyright of Hans Eriksson, Håkke Sjöström, Sanna Sundberg, Elisabeth Jonsson Viklund and Carla Pittau.
1st September: Kieran has updated his Mk1Kieran Youtube channel with 38 minutes of footage from last Sunday's Ford Show. Kieran says "Highlights for me were seeing the ex-Team Extreme Racing Ford Escort Cosworth back in action, this is a car that is fully street legal and has previously been down into the low 8s powered by a Twin Turbo SBC. It was also good to see Darren Peart and his Mk3 Cortina getting some test runs in before Doorslammers next week where he's entered in the Pro Doorslammer class!". You can see Kieran's video at this link.
Drag racing historian Nick Pettitt has updated his Youtube channel with three uploads of film produced by Dave Derry, Steve Clifton and Jerry Cookson of action at Long Marston Raceway in 1980 and 1981. The 1980 production includes Clive Mechaell's Corvette crash, Top Bike, Pro Comp action, Malcolm Olley's Jet, the Entertainer Capri Funny, Tina Page, Dennis Priddle and Trevor Young in Top Fuel. In the first 1981 production there is Street and Modified action including the Hot Tomato C-Cab of the Clifton Bros, and Gerry Cookson's Berkeley, Dave Warne's Vega Panel Van, Steve Hales, Graham Barrs, Andy Robinson, Sylvia Hauser, and in the second production from 1981 we have Top Fuel, Funny Car and Trans Atlantic Drag Bike action at Long Marston including Tony Boden, Jim Read, Trevor Young, Dave Wilson, Andy Craddock, Ronnie Picardo, Dennis Priddle and from the USA Bo O'Brochta.
Happy Birthday for today to Super Street Bike racer Steve Venables and to Outlaw Anglia racer Mick Taylor. Have a great day guys from all of us at Eurodragster.com.