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28th August: With less than a week to go before the FIA / FIM European Finals takes centre stage at Santa Pod Raceway three Pro teams from Europe have swollen the entry list still further. The entire Santa Pod team are readying the site for what looks set to be a gladiatorial finish to all of the classes and Championships:
As mentioned on Eurodragster.com on Wednesday the first of the late entries is Sweden's Patrik Pers with his awesome Top Fuel Dragster, increasing the class to a nine-car field. It will be clear in the Friday night time qualifying session why these cars really are the Kings of Drag Racing!
Another last minute-entry comes from all-time favourite Fast Freddy Fagerström who makes a welcome return to the Home of European Drag Racing. Swede Freddy's eighth-mile burnouts are legendary and his Pro Modified truck now sports a new turbo engine and set-up.
The icing on the cake comes in the form of Finnish Pro Modified racer Tero Laukkanen who enters the fray fresh from setting a European speed record of 260.11 mph, the first European doorslammer to top 260 mph. The wild doorslammers will set the track alight with twenty one cars fighting for sixteen places in Sunday's eliminations.
Advance ticket bookings at reduced price close at the end of office hours today (Friday). To order your tickets visit www.santapod.com or call 01234 782828 (outside the UK +44 1234 782828).
European Finals racer update.
28th August: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding details of the arrangements for next week's FIA / FIM European Finals at Santa Pod Raceway:
Tuesday 1st September
12:00 Gates open for racers only
19:00 Gates close
Wednesday 2nd September
08:00 Gates open for the duration of the event
11:00 Signing On office opens (earlier for racers entered in the Pro Peak Performance Day)
11:00 Car scrutineering commences, no set order - if possible please get scrutineered on Wednesday
20:00 Signing On office closes
Thursday 3rd September
07:00 Signing On office opens
07:00 Car scrutineering commences Pro car scrutineering order Sportsman car scrutineering order
09:00 Bike scrutineering commences Pro bike scrutineering order
09:30 Track opens for qualifying
Friday 4th September
07:30 Signing On office opens
07:30 Scrutineering commences
09:30 Track opens for qualifying
Saturday 5th September
08:00 Signing On office opens
08:00 Scrutineering commences
09:30 Track opens for qualifying and eliminations
Sunday 6th September
09:30 Track opens for eliminations
Provisional running orders are now available for all four days of the event and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please note that as ever these running orders are provisional and subject to change due to weather or track conditions or for any other reason deemed necessary by race officials.
Please remember the curfew: no race vehicle motors are to be started before 09:00 or after 21:00 on any day. Breach of curfew can result (has resulted) in exclusion from the meeting. If going to Scrutineering before 09:00 then please push or tow race vehicles, do not drive.
SPRC would appreciate it if UK Sportsman racers have their bank sort code and account number with them so that winnings can be paid directly into their accounts by Bacs the day after the event. Cheques will still be available to those who would prefer them, however SPRC would prefer to use Bacs as bank charges are lower and racers will receive their money sooner.
Event entry update.
28th August: Today (Friday) is the official closing date for entry to the UK National Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 19th-20th September and which is the final round of the 2015 UK National Drag Racing Championships, the penultimate round of the ACU UK Drag Bike Championships, and a Championship round for a number of other series. Ian Marshall of SPRC however tells us that he will be accepting entry forms at Shakespeare County Raceway this weekend. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.
Thanks to Ian for forwarding us Version 3 of the official UK National Finals entry list which you can check out by clicking here.
If you have any queries about UK National Finals entry then please contact Ian on email@example.com or call 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625).
27th August: UK Funny Bike racer Steve French writes with sadness to announce the death from cancer of his longtime friend and crew Gordon Smith.
"Without Gordon the team would not have been able to do what it did", says Steve. "Every trophy, award and record we set and Championship won were as a result of his input and diligence. A better crewman you could not have wished for. God Speed in the next life Gordon, you will be missed."
Our deepest sympathies to Steve and to all of Gordon's family and friends.
Open Sport Nationals racer update.
27th August: Many thanks to Tony Smith for passing us Saturday's provisional running order for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Please note that as ever this running order is provisional and subject to change due to weather or track conditions or for any other reason deemed necessary by race officials.
27th August: Dick Koster of Eurodragster.com sponsor Post & Dros has been in touch to remind racers of the special Sportsman datalogger deal which will be closing on Mnday of next week (31st). The datalogger is on sale at a special price of €699 (normal retail price €800). The part number is 610-KT-SPRTMN; for more information or to place an order check out our news item of 24th July. Dick adds that if racers need Racepak, MSD or Clevite Bearings parts before next week's European Finals then now would be a good time to order at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have a birthday on the Eurodragster.com team today. Please join Kirstie, Simon and Tog in a big Happy Birthday to Photographer Julian. Have a great day buddy.
Web site updates.
27th August: Our friends at Bangshift.com are webcasting the Street Car Super Nationals from St Louis starting today (Thursday). The free broadcast commences at 23:00 UK / 00:00 European tonight, tomorrow and Saturday and you will be able to tune in by clicking here.
Our good buddy Steve Moxley has had his SPRC Summernationals bike report posted on the Eay My Ink web site at www.eatmyink.com.
The latest update on The Mad Welshman's Flickr site features galleries from all three days of Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway. You can check out Mad's shots at www.flickr.com/photos/the_madwelshman.
Junior Fun Day coverage.
26th August: Eurodragster.com is in place at Santa Pod Raceway to bring you all the action from the Junior Drag Racing Fun Day coverage in association with John Woolfe Racing.
Our coverage will consist of pit notes updated throughout the day and a photo gallery at the end of the day. There is no webcam as News Editor Tog is at his day job today.
You can check out our Junior Drag Racing Fun Day Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Event entry update.
26th August: This Friday (28th) is the official closing date for entry to the UK National Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 19th-20th September and which is the final round of the 2015 UK National Drag Racing Championships, the penultimate round of the ACU UK Drag Bike Championships, and a Championship round for a number of other series. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.
Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 2 of the official UK National Finals entry list which you can check out by clicking here.
If you have any queries about UK National Finals entry then please contact Ian on email@example.com or call 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625).
Queen for a day.
26th August: Scandinavian Internationals Top Fuel Dragster winner Anita Mäkelä stamped her name all over the scoresheets with a new European ET record of 3.878 seconds and six three-second runs in a row. Anita got in touch to tell us how it was for her but started with a special message:
Thank you dear Eurodragster.com readers for the congratulations and compliments which I have had from you after Tierp. Thank you for joining in our huge joy. The Scandinavian Internationals was our race and we all know how rare that kind of race is.
We started Q1 with a 13.06 with a broken valve spring. Q1 made me a little bit worried, especially because I was so low after Hockenheim. But then the Happy Engine started to sing: Q2 3.9978 / 417 kmh, Q3 3.9057 / 487 kmh and Q4 3.8785 / 504 kmh. WOW! And a new European Record was on the board.
In the first round we won against Stefan Gunnarsson with a 3.945 to his 4.284, in the second round we ran 3.915 to Liam Jones' 4.207 and in the final round we won with a 3.985 to Duncan Micallef's 4.011. We had made six three-second runs in a row and, simply put, we were smiling!
It is going to be interesting race at Santa Pod next week. Micke Kågered is still eighteen points ahead of us in the European Championship. If we don't let Micke's points increase in the qualifying sessions it means we can still win the Championship by racing well. You get twenty points for winning a round, and we need to beat Micke by one round. If we are good enough, it will be possible.
The practice tree will have heavy use and I'll add some more 70 km bike rides before leaving for Santa Pod. And in the workshop you can hear tools doing long hours freshening up the Happy Engine. Actually, it is no longer just one engine which runs fast: we have a Happy Engine family.
To Micke and team: let's race!
Malmgren joins the 6.5 Club.
26th August: Swedish Pro Stock racer Michael Malmgren says that he is very happy and proud of his weekend at the Scandinavian Internationals where he set new Personal Bests of 6.592 seconds and 338 kmh over the quarter and a new best eighth mile speed of 270 kmh:
Looking at what Thomas Lindström and Nixxon Sundblom are running we are right there. I think that both have PB half track speeds around 271 kmh which we feel is in reach as our 6.59 run was very soft on clutch and low start revs to be safe.
Our downfall at this race was that we shook in the second round with same tuning and set-up we had in the first round when we beat Magnus Pettersson with a 6.59, so it should not have done what it did.
This was our chance to catch up at the top as Jimmy Ålund lost in first round, and we could have been in the title battle at Santa Pod. Now it's impossible and we have to try to protect our third spot.
I am very proud of my team who work very well together, with new engine tuner this year Kent Jonsson - former Crew Chief for Michael Callin and Tommy Leindahl for many years - together with Bjarne Cox, Tomas Jonsson, Micke Börjesson, Kent Eriksson, Michael Malmgren and Monica Bengtsson. We are also very proud of our engine builder Bob Ingles who has proven that he can still build top-notch power so we can run up there with Thomas and Nixxon. Jimmy Ålund is still running in a class of his own with his KB Racing power. He has same power as the KN boys and that is impossible to match, simple as that, and he is getting everything out of it and doing a very good job, that we must say.
But hey, if I had not redlit in Finland I might have been in the points lead right now: on race day anything can happen, as we experienced in the second round this weekend when we felt we had a safe win against Janne Ericsson as he was 0.1 seconds slower then us, but we shook and he beat us. It was his first final round so we are all happy for him.
Finally a big ThankYou for all my USA erformance parts sponsors Victory Valves, Trend Performance, Diamond Pistons, Champion, Fel Pro, Speed Pro, Dynotech Driveshafts, Motive gears, Strange Engineering, MSD, PAC Springs, Calico Coatings, Braswell Carburation, and Auto-Verdi Oil Pumps. We would not be a top dog fighter without their support. Special thanks also to MBE Cylinder Heads and Bob Benton for fantastic work on our DRCE 3 heads.
Dragracing-Bodensee: Under index.
26th August: Michael Utz and Manuel Kreiter have been in touch from Germany with a review of their season in Comp Eliminator:
We finished 2014 with an 8.39 best but major engine trouble with our Bel Air. The huge amount of E85 which we ran through our Nitrous Fogger system could not be burned any more: two destroyed pistons with upwardly bent heads confirmed that fact for us. As we are racer we did not give up immediately. We wanted to try again in Competition Eliminator in 2015 with our Small Block and Nitrous Oxide. Our index is a very sporty 7.86 so we decided to upgrade the Nitrous Oxide system and to change the fuel from E85 to C23.
At the end of 2014 season we discussed our plans with Thomas Engelage at Hockenheim and told him about the upcoming workload he would be facing. We ended up in a very long parts list: pistons, cylinder heads, valve train, manifold, two carburettors, new rear end ratio, torque converter etc. Due to our budget all of the parts except pistons and carbs were used parts sourced by Thomas Engelage which again proves the outstanding service of his company.
Whilst the engone was being assembled by the Engelage Brothers we started to search for a new Nitrous Oxide system. The Fogger system has been available from countless suppliers for thirty years without any major improvements. While searching the internet we found Wizards of Nos in in the UK. The idea of the REVO system from WON was exactly our thing: all about doing things differently from others. It looks complicated, ambitious, and different. We had a lot of conversations with Trevor Langfield of WON, Roger Johannson (Pro Modified) and Mats Wicktor (Pro Modified) and we finally nailed the concept. It would be the REVO System from WON combined with small modifications from us.
When all the parts arrived in our workshop it was already April and the first race was due to take place in May at Rivanazzano in Italy. When all the parts where assembled we had to carry out some flow tests with the Nitrous system. We had some minor problems so for safety reasons we decided not to use Nitrous at the race in Italy. The goal for the race in Rivanazzano would be to find a set-up for the carburettors. This was not successful because of the new type of race fuel. To be prepared we hired a small airport a few weeks later to finish the job.
Meanwhile the REVO system was finished and ready for the flow tests. In the end we made about sixty flow tests on the fuel side and the same amount on the Nitrous side. Afterwards we made some simulations of an entire run. Charts and calculations were made which is important because the REVO Nitrous System does not work in stages like the Fogger systems; it will release the power continuously depending on a preconfigured curve. We arrived at the NitrOlympX in Hockenheim well prepared, so we thought...
After some problems in the first three qualifiers we were able to qualify as seventh with an 8.064 in the last session. In E1 we had to race against Rene Maierhofer, we didn't expect to defeat him and we lost with a Personal Best of 7.805 on a perfectly prepared track, our first run below index. Our expectations have been more than achieved and the concept and preparation have been proven. With just two runs on the REVO system we were able to achieve the time and the speed we hoped according to the calculations we did beforehand.
There is still some left in the REVO system for next season - this year we deliberately limited the Nitrous to 400 hp. Next year there will be more to come.
I would like to thank my team, Rene Maierhofer's team and everyone involved for an outstanding season. See you in 2016.
Pictures by Schenker and Team Bodensee
26th August: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com (below left) came with one word: "Exclusive". If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After selling their Super Comp Bike and scoring a nice Funny Bike chassis from Sweden, Germany's Thorsten Appel and the Bad City Crew team have finally started to build what is planned to become the quickest and fastest Funny Bike in the country. "We mocked up the engine in the chassis and to our surprise it lined up quite well at the first try", says Thorsten. "We aligned everything and fabricated new brackets to weld to the chassis to hold the engine in the frame. All of this went really smoothly as the chassis proved to be straight and true". For more information on the bike's build up, check out the team's Facebook page.
Wayne Jackson tells us that son and Super Pro ET racer Brad Jackson will not be driving a Jet Dragster in Las Vegas in the autumn as originally planned. The sticking point is acquiring insurance for someone of Brad's age but the team are working on sorting it out for next season. Wayne says that he and Brad will still be going to the USA to crew on Tom Bognor's Jet Dragster.
Drag Week UK commences with this weekend's Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceways then continues with racers planning to drive in convoy to Santa Pod Raceway for next week's FIA / FIM European Finals. If you are planning to stay at SCR on Monday evening to take part in the convoy on Tuesday then Steve Hudson of Eurodragster.com sponsor Hillingdon Speed and Spares tells us that a party is planned in the pits on Monday evening.
Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us the latest amendments to the official entry list for next week's FIA / FIM European Finals which adds Patrik Pers in Top Fuel Dragsters but unfortunately loses Marcus Hilt and Mick Payne (Pro Modified). You can check out the Finals entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Open Sport Nationals Perfect Awards.
26th August: This weekend's Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals is the latest event in this season's Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme. £150 is on offer for perfect performance.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been increased to £75 after it went unclaimed at the Mopar EuroNats. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer this weekend to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available to racers in all classes during qualifying and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £100 for the FIA / FIM European Finals at Santa Pod Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the FIA / FIM European Finals. The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Bad Habit Racing (Cath and Tig Napier, Pro ET).
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office or from the Eurodragster.com office in Race Control (entry via Spectator Bank side stairs only).
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Gold RV Perfect ET Award has been increased to £75 after it went unclaimed at Bug Jam. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer this weekend to run an ET to the thousandth of a second on dial-in or index. The Perfect ET Award is available this weekend during qualifying or eliminations in Super Pro ET, Pro ET, Sportsman ET, Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Street, Lucas Oil Junior Dragster (eliminations only), VW Pro, VW Sportsman, the Wild Bunch, 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike, Supertwin ET and Junior Drag Bike, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Run of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £100 for the FIA / FIM European Finals at Santa Pod Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the FIA / FIM European Finals. The Perfect ET Award is presented in association with RV sales and service specialists Gold RV. For more details about the services which Gold RV can provide see Derek Flynn or visit www.goldrv.co.uk.
To be eligible to collect the Perfect ET Award, racers are required to carry decals, one on each side of the vehicle. If you pull this weekend's first Perfect ET but are not carrying decals then there will be no discussion; we will not pay out and the next person to pull a Perfect ET will get the money assuming that they are carrying decals. Decals will be available in the Signing On office from Friday evening.
Open Sport Nationals coverage.
26th August: Eurodragster.com will be at Shakespeare County Raceway this weekend to bring you all the action from the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals in association with John Woolfe Racing.
Our coverage will consist of frequently updated reports and stats on the on-track action throughout each day and a photo gallery at the end of each day. There will be no pit notes this weekend as usual Pit Reporter Simon is writing the race reports and usual Race Reporter Tog will be photographing.
The Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam will be on-line broadcasting live video and commentary / Shakeysounds audio so long as the track is open each day. We have a plan to broadcast live interviews should there be any downtime so if any racers are interested in being interviewed on camera then please keep an ear on the PA and details will be announced during the race.
We will post a direct Home Page link to our coverage as soon as it commences but in the meantime you can check out our Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Springspeed Nationals Event Index, which includes a link to the official entry list, by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Web site updates.
26th August: Our good buddy Remco Scheelings has posted his usual post-race reports on Netherlands' Autosport web site, in this case from the weekend's Scandinavian Internationals at Tierp Arena. As ever the on- and off-track reports are worth a look even if your Dutch is lacking as Remco's pictures are also excellent. You can check out the on-track report by clicking here and the off-track report by clicking here.
Also updating from Tierp Arena is another good friend, Pasi Uponen, whose superb photo gallery can be found at pasiu.kuvat.fi/kuvat.
Open Sport Nationals racer update.
25th August: Many thanks to Jerry Cookson for passing us details of the arrangements for this weekend's Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway:
Version 2 of the official entry list is now available and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. The final version will be posted later this week.
Racer tickets along with final instructions, vehicle passes and scrutineering slips have now been posted to every racer who submitted their entries before close of play last Friday. Anyone who has posted their entry since Friday will be able to collect their tickets on arrival at the main gate. If any crew member arrives before their racer then they must notify the track beforehand, or wait to gain entry until their driver / rider arrives at the track.
A maximum of three half price racer tickets will be available per team. These can only be purchased on arrival at the main gate on Friday and Saturday, or in advance by calling Rachel on 01789 414119 (outside the UK +44 1789 414119).
Entry to the pits will commence at 12:00 on Friday. If racers wish to arrive on Friday morning, before the pit gate opens, then they are more than welcome to park up and wait. Please note that pit marshals will escort all racers to their designated pit, so please be patient if a queue develops on the entrance road into the pits. Anyone who pits incorrectly will be politely asked to move to their allocated pit space.
Scrutineering will commence for both cars and bikes at approximately 17:00 on Friday. Scrutineering will resume at 08:00 on Saturday. Signing On will also open at these times.
Saturday's running order will be posted here on Eurodragster.com later this week. Copies will be available in the Signing On office which will be open between 18:00 and 20:00-21:00 on Friday.
Shakespeare County Raceway would also like to remind everyone of safety requirements in the staging and fire up lanes. No crew members under the age of seventeen may enter these areas. Under-age Junior crew members can still watch their respective teams race from the grandstands. The grandstands can be accessed from the top of the lanes by the Signing On Office. We understand that this may upset some of the Junior crews, however your safety is paramount and must be considered at all times. These rules obviously do not apply to under-17s who are riding or driving a race vehicle which is in the pairing lanes (for which you must be a holder of an MSA/ACU licence or you are participating in observed runs). All children remain the responsibility of the parent/ guardian at all times. Thank you for your co-operation.
If you have any queries about entry to the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, then please contact the Raceway office at email@example.com or call 01789 720180 or call 01789 720180 / 414119 (outside the UK +44 1789 720180 / 414119).
SPR stock up on VP.
25th August: Santa Pod Raceway tell us that despite issues with the supply of VP Racing Fuels they have now a shipment confirmed to be in the UK and on its way to the track, scheduled to arrive tomorrow (Wednesday 26th). The most popular lines such as C12, C14, C16, C23 and N02 will all be replenished to add to their current stock of E85R, MS109, MS100, SV05, VP Import, C85, X16 and Q16. Purchases can be made by phone on 01234 782828 (outside the UK +44 1234 782828), or via Santa Pod Raceway's web site at www.santapod.com and your fuel will be reserved for collection at the track. SPR say that they will be working with manufacturers and distributors both in the UK and America to secure a more predictable supply in 2016.
Scandinavian Internationals results.
24th August: Congratulations to the winners at the weekend's Scandinavian Internationals at Tierp Arena:
FIA Top Fuel Dragster: Anita Mäkelä 3.9859/482.57 def. Duncan Micallef 4.0118/483.87
FIA Top Methanol Dragster: Dennis Habermann 5.2875/437.60 def. Timo Habermann 10.7808/172.91
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car: Johan Lindberg 6.2230/413.48 def. Leif Andréasson 18.3801/57.47
FIA Pro Modified: Micke Gullqvist 5.8822/401.19 def. Roger Johansson 6.0671/379.48
FIA Pro Stock: Thomas Lindström 6.5747/340.26 bye, Jan Ericsson did not start
NMC Supertwin Motorcycle: Samu Kemppainen 6.6138/339.20 def. Vidar Ravnsborg 7.3413/248.73
NMC Pro Stock Motorcycle: Fredrik Fredlund 6.9959/309.46 def. Robert Karlsson 7.0516/307.34
NMC Super Street Bike: Rick Stubbins 7.2083/318.96 (198.19 mph) def. Alex Hope 7.2628/327.47 (203.48 mph)
Comp Eliminator: Jens Eklund (8.12) 7.5685/261.63 def. PerErik Lindgren (9.05) 8.5976/238.62
Pro Street: Tero Vainio 7.6162/290.32 def. Roffe Plahn 7.6989/254.48
Super Comp: Anders Brändström 9.0065/250.81 def. Leif Nyström no time DQ deep stage
Super Gas: Christer Uhlin 9.9414/191.63 def. Håkan Mattsson 10.0444/228.43
Super Street: Daniel Aggelid 10.9469/160.43 def. Tomas Hägg 10.9413/213.27
Stock/Super Stock: Anders Lindh (10.39) 10.4152/202.02 def. Tarmo Mikkola (9.95) 9.9691/206.82
Junior Dragster: Pontus Garefelt (7.94) 8.0446/127.51 def. Tobias Björnsson (8.12) 8.1626/127.30
Super Comp Bike: Thomas Nilsson 8.7308/268.79 def. Nichlas Sverin 8.6301/258.25 DQ red light
Super Gas Bike: Thomas Nordin 10.0873/171.43 def. Marcus Forsberg no time DQ deep stage
Subject to official ratification the following records were set:
Top Fuel Dragster ET: 3.878 seconds, Anita Mäkelä
Top Methanol Dragster ET: 5.209 seconds, Timo Habermann
Pro Modified speed: 418.60 kmh / 260.11 mph, Tero Laukkanen (first European 260 mph doorslammer pass)
NMC Pro Stock Motorcycle ET: 6.977 seconds, Fredrik Fredlund
NMC Pro Stock Motorcycle speed: 312.68 kmh / 194.29 mph, Fredrik Fredlund (fastest ever European PSM speed)
The event also featured a new European record Pro Stock bump spot of 6.758 seconds, the quickest ever European Pro Stock Bike pass of 6.959 seconds by Ellsa Karlsson, the first ever side-by-side six-second Pro Stock Bike passes by Fredrik Fredlund (6.998) and Robert Karlsson (6.982), and the fastest ever side-by-side Pro Stock Bike passes in Europe by Fredrik Fredlund 311.06 kmh (193.28 mph) and Robert Karlsson 312.14 kmh (193.95 mph).
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Scandinavian Internationals reports and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
2015 EDRS NMC Champions.
24th August: Many thanks to Åsa Kinnemar of Speedgroup for passing on this year's EDRS Nordic Motorcycle Championship winners. Congratulations to:
Top Fuel Bike: Jan Sturla Hegre
Supertwin Motorcycle: Samu Kemppainen
Pro Stock Motorcycle: Robert Karlsson
Super Street Bike: Björn Friström
You can read more at www.edrspro.com.
Bad Blood breaks cover.
22nd August: Laura Turburville writes that after Bloodlines Racing decided to purchase the former Oomen Racing car at the FIA Main Event, they set to overhauling the car and making it their own in time for the FIA / FIM European Finals:
Many changes have been made including a new interior, patina paint and pinstriping work by Nefarious, a new mono wing, wheels and lots of shiny bits!
We are testing for the first time this weekend at VW Action as well as showing the car on the Kleen Freaks stand while it is not on track. This will be in preparation for the European Finals, where we are looking forward to another great weekend of racing with our twinned Swiss team Trouble Racing.
Massive thanks have to go to everyone who helped make this car possible including Bloodlines Racing, team chief Ian Turboville, Kleen Freaks, Nefarious, Central College Nottingham, USAutomotive, Pete Whitmore, Matt 'The Stitch', AC Custom Coatings and ChromeWorx.
Event entry update.
20th August: Entry is still open for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, a round of the UK National and ACU UK Drag Bike Championships as well as a round for a number of other series, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway at the end of next week (29th-31st August). Racers competing in ET and Super classes and Lucas Oil Junior Dragster are reminded to pay particular attention to revisions in the Supplementary Regulations and Indemnity notices. You can download entry forms from the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.
Please note that camera-phone pictures of entry forms will not be accepted; entries should either be posted or scanned and E-Mailed. Thanks to Jerry Cookson for forwarding us Version 1 of the official entry list for the Open Sport Nationals which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. If you have any queries about Open Sport Nationals entry then please contact Shakespeare County Raceway at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01789 720180 (outside the UK +44 1789 720180).
Friday of next week, 28th August, is the official closing date for entry to the UK National Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 19th-20th September and which is the final round of the 2015 UK National Drag Racing Championships, the penultimate round of the ACU UK Drag Bike Championships, and a Championship round for a number of other series. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 1 of the official UK National Finals entry list which you can check out by clicking here. If you have any queries about UK National Finals entry then please contact Ian Marshall on email@example.com or call 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625).
Heading to Santa Pod from SCR?
20th August: Staying with next week's Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, the event forms the front end of the UK's very own Drag Week and Darren Prentice writes that if racers wish to go straight from Shakespeare County Raceway to Santa Pod Raceway to pit up for the FIA European Finals then Santa Pod's gates will be open for race teams only between 12:00 midday and 19:00 on Tuesday 1st September. SPR's gates will then reopen at 08:00 on Wednesday 2nd September for the Pro Peak Performance Test and Tune Day. A pit marshal will be on hand to direct you to your pit space on both days.
Please note that the shower block will be open on the Tuesday and Wednesday but that pitside power will not be available until 12:00 midday on the Wednesday.
20th August: If you are wracking your brains for an idea for birthday or Christmas presents for your News Editor, any of the Eurodragster.com team, any drag racing fan or indeed yourself then you could do a lot worse than purchase this Nostalgia Funny Car which Horst Schön tells us is available as a rolling chassis for €7500. More information from Horst at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When Don Garlits visited England for the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala last November, he was interviewed for Motor Sport magazine by the distinguished motoring writer Rob Widdows. Robin Jackson tells us that following publication in the magazine, the article has now been made available on Motor Sport's on-line archive at www.motorsportmagazine.com/archive/article/march-2015/98/straight-talkin. Robin says that knowledgeable readers may spot a couple of factual errors, but that this was the writer's first encounter with drag racing and that Don can be a veritable fount of information when he gets going. Rob Widdows reckoned it was the most fascinating interview he had done in years.
Bengtsson promises good show.
19th August: This weekend's Scandinavian Internationals at Tierp Arena is the final race in the 2015 EDRS Nordic Pro Motorcycle Championship and there will be a very tough battle in the Super Twin Bike class. L-O Jonsson of Per Bengtsson's Beast Supertwin team says that with sixteen bikes entered for the event and just eight spots available in the ladder qualifying will be a show of its own:
After two victories in a row, at Alastaro and Gardermoen, Samu Kemppainen is number one in the Championship with a 94 point advantage over Hans-Olav Olstad but Per is just one point behind Hans Olav. The Championship title is realistically decided but runner-up will be a battle between the two Parallel Twin-powered bikes in the class. Thunderstruck against the Beast!
"We had some issues during earlier races, and the Drag Challenge at Gardermoen was the first race at which we could use the power on a good track in decent conditions", says Per. "We produced good times in qualifying with a best of 6.41 seconds but went out in a disappointing first round loss. After a lot of hours in the workshop since Norway we seem to have found a few gremlins which have been haunting us and with a quality track at the Tierp Arena facility we hope to lower our Personal Best in qualifying. Elimination day is another thing, as you know, but we hope to beat Hans-Olav in the final.
"On Saturday we will have a lot of invited guests and sponsors in our pit and we will do our very best to put on a show to be remembered for some time."
A big thank you to the following partners for their support: Red Line Oil Scandinavia, Autoexperten Växjö, Bilservice i Ålseda AB, Rävemåla Bilservice AB, Liqui Moly, Persåkers Speedshop, Fanhultstvätten Älmhult, Ulvsgården AB, Gates/Lönne, Swedcut, Per Andersens Restauranger, Flexoart and Bentec Engineering.
For more information about the Beast team please visit our web site at www.bentec.net. You can also follow the Beast on Facebook at The Beast Dragbike.
Remco Scheelings writes that as well as Samu Kemppainen in Supertwin, Elvira Karlsson (Pro Stock Motorcycle), Björn Friström (Super Street Bike) and Jan Sturla Hegre (Top Fuel Motorcycle) enter this weekend's final round as leaders in their respective categories. But for at least two of these it is far from sure they will be the Champion after Sunday's eliminations. You can find out more on the Series' web site at www.edrspro.com.
A minnow amongst sharks.
19th August: Drag racing may be the loudest sport on Earth but one extraordinary car definitely won’t be shaking the ground when the FIA European Finals bellows into life at Santa Pod Raceway over the first weekend of September: motoring journalist and TV presenter Jonny Smith has entered his Enfield-8000 in the Street Eliminator class.
...Entered his what?
His Enfield-8000. One has to be of a certain age to remember these cars on the road first time around. Years before anyone dreamt of a Smart, the British-built Enfield-8000 was the putative eco-conveyance of the oil-crisis 1970s, a tiny, two-seat city-runaround driven by electricity. Only 120 were built before cost, chiefly, killed off production and the miniature battery-powered innovation faded from memory... until Jonny Smith came along to resurrect it.
Smith’s Enfield, dubbed the Flux Capacitor, will undoubtedly be the oddest machine entered at the European Finals. We have seen motorised garden sheds, dinner tables, bar stools and suchlike take to the track for purposes of adventure, but the Flux Capacitor is a serious racing machine entered in a serious international motor race. The original template from 1974 has been recalibrated into a twenty first century charger by Webster Race Engineering, with motive forces delivered by Current Racing and Hyperdrive Innovations.
The car's diminutive size will likely be its most distinctive feature – electric racers are rare but not unknown in drag racing, though their silence, except for the squeal of tyres, is always arresting against the usual wall of noise. Street Eliminator entries are an eclectic bunch, coming in myriad shapes and sizes, but none remotely so small as this. David and Goliath, minnow versus sharks... for once, the clichés will seem forgivable when the Enfield edges to the start line.
Minuscule it may be, but performance-wise the Flux Capacitor is no slouch. Previous visits to Santa Pod this summer have elicited sub twelve-second quarter-mile passes at over 100 mph, figures that would surprise many a self-respecting road-going supercar. Those marks were achieved in the entry-level Sportsman ET class. Street Eliminator is a different matter. Street Eliminator cars must be road-legal, though you wouldn't want to try pulling away from one at the traffic lights – Steve Neimantas' phenomenal Bentley Continental and Mark Todd's mighty Pontiac GTO can both push 200 mph over the standing quarter-mile. However, for a drag racing class Street Eliminator has an unusually wide performance disparity. Among its seventeen opponents, Smith's Enfield may not be the slowest in the show.
Street Eliminator presents an added complication: once on-track qualifying against the clock is done, entries undertake a twenty five-mile evening cruise on public roads, with a mandatory filling station stop for pump petrol and a timed hot-start test. Failure to complete any element of the course merits disqualification from the following day's elimination rounds. At least the hot-start won't trouble the Enfield, though Smith will be praying there is enough charge left in the battery to get back to the track.
To emphasise its legality, the Flux Capacitor recently received its exemption notice from London's Congestion Charge. Could it be the fleetest exempt vehicle on the capital's city-centre roads?
The FIA European Finals attracts more than 250 entries from fourteen countries ranging from 300 mph Top Fuel Dragsters to 40 mph Junior Dragsters driven by children... plus one tiny, battery-powered Enfield-8000.
European Top Gas Round 5 review.
19th August: Herman Jolink writes that the fifth round of the European Top Gas Series took place at the 30th NitrOlympX at Hockenheim in front of 75,000 spectators in good weather and on a very well prepared track.
We had one qualifier on Friday and one on Saturday. Final qualifying:
Round 1: Albers 7.801/242 beat van Nimmen 14.727/112, Della Vecchia 9.226/226 beat Foit 10.691/224, Menzi 8.480/255 beat Buehler 9.917/224 (PB for Buehler), Andersen 9.753/155 beat Kolacny 10.204/166 Andersen broke his crankshaft in this run, Schack 7.999/213 beat Larsson, van Schie 8.718/234 bye, Pinet 30.393/54 beat Abraham gearbox problems, at the start Pinet's right hand came off the bars, Ivana van den Berg 10.035/187 beating Jolink engine out at the start.
Round 2: Albers 7.880/271 beat Dalla Vecchia 9.245/223, Menzi 10.032/175 bye run Andersen broke, Schack 7.721/255 beat van Schie 11.536/133 van Schie had a 0.184 red light, Ivana van den Berg 9.843/211(PB for Ivana) beat Pinet 34.01/75, again Pinet's left hand came off the steering at the start, got a very heavy speeb wobble and lost almost his control of his bike.
Semi finals: Albers 7.648/260 beat Menzi left before the Tree ran, Schack 7.501/275 beat Ivana van den Berg 10.301/210
Final: Frederik Schack DK 0.067 RT 7.654/260 beat Cord Albers 0.116 RT D 7.738/275 kmh
Top Gas Championship after five rounds:
A satisfied customer writes...
19th August: Trevor Langfield of Eurodragster.com sponsor Wizards of NOS passed on a testimony about his products from Germany's Michael Utz who campaigns a '55 Chevy Bel Air fitted with a 434 ci Small Block Chevy:
I have been using US brand nitrous kits for four years and last year I was using 400 HP jets. My best results using the US kits were best normally aspirated ET of 9.1 seconds and best nitrous ET of 8.36 seconds, an improvement of approximately 0.75 seconds but the motor suffered damage as the result of bad nitrous and fuel distribution.
To try to avoid further damage this year, I decided to speak with Trevor Langfield at Wizards of NOS and after learning about all the advantages it offered, I decided to buy his incredible Revo system. Due to the changes I intended to make to the induction system which included changing from single carburettor to double carburettor with tunnel ram manifold, Trevor had to design me a special system as the manifold wouldn't accept his normal components. On Trevor's advice I also exchanged the standard pistons to custom-made nitrous pistons. With Trevor's outstanding E-Mail and phone support I was able to set up the Revo system so that I was confident in adding 400 hp on the first run without any fear of damage. The system can deliver approximately 700 HP but for direct comparison with the US kit results we had it set to deliver just 400 HP.
Last weekend we raced with the system and car fully functional for the first time at the NitrOlympX and we had the following results. The best normally aspirated ET was 9.4 seconds and the best Revo assisted ET was 7.805 seconds - an improvement of over a second and a half which is double the improvement we got from the same amount of nitrous using the US kit. Trevor has also told me that the motor would not have been making much more than 300 HP, as we were running more retarded than we needed to.
I am absolutely happy with the Wizards of NOS Revo System. I am now able to adjust the power level and delivery rate within minutes to suit track conditions. Also the alarm monitoring system within the Max Extreme prevented our system from working when the nitrous pressure was way too high and prevent engine failure. On the first run with the new system I was confident that the Revo system would work properly so I went directly for 400 HP. With all other systems the manufacturers tell you to start with small amounts of nitrous and go up from run to run. I do not race a lot so I do not have the time for playing around. Every nitrous run at the NitrOlympX resulted in a Personal Best and there is still many improvements we can make to the Max Extreme settings as well as improvements from reducing the timing retard.
I have no doubt that the Revo system is much better than any other nitrous kit and I believe my results prove it.
FIM Europe update.
17th August: Congratulations to Mogens Lund who won the FIM European Super Street Bike Cup round at Kunmadaras in Hungary this weekend. Mogens was #1 qualifier at 7.603/285.32 kmh and took the final with an easy eight-second pass after Thomas Granica redlit. You can check out full FIM European Super Street Bike Cup qualifying and elimination stats on the Kunmadaras Motorsport web site at www.kunmadarasmotorsport.hu/web/en/results.html.
Many thanks to Palle Lind for passing us the official post-NitrOlympX (Top Fuel Bike, Supertwin, Pro Stock Bike) and Adrenalin Extreme Festival (Super Street Bike) points standings in the 2015 FIM European Drag Bike Championships. You can check out the FIM points on our OCS Paint-sponsored Points Standings page by clicking here or by clicking on the OCS Paint Points Standings link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Editor's note: We have a small backlog of news on which we are working. Stay tuned and please keep the news coming to email@example.com.
European Finals Web TV.
17th August: Trakbak Racing Ltd and Track Group Europe are pleased to announce that there will be a free to watch Live Web Broadcast from the FIA / FIM European Finals at Santa Pod Raceway, featuring multi-camera coverage from the Friday evening Nitro Session through to the eliminations and finals on Sunday. You will be able to watch live at www.santapod.co.uk/webtv once the broadcast begins.
16th August: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 5 (the first final version) of the official entry list for the FIA / FIM European Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September. You can check out the Finals entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Similarly thanks to Camilla Zörner for forwarding us the final official entry list for this week's Scandinavian Internationals at Tierp Arena, which starts on Thursday. You can check out the Scandinavian Internationals entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Congratulations to ex-pat UK Top Alcohol Dragster racer Michael Manners of Eurodragster.com sponsor Cosmo Residences who won Top Alcohol Dragster at this weekend's NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series round at Heartland Park, Topeka. Mike tells us that although it was a fun weekend he didn't have it easy as, amongst other things, his chutes deployed at 1000 feet twice. Sweden's Jonnie Lindberg was runner-up in Top Methanol FC. You can check out full results on the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com.
The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com (below left) came with the words "The new target". If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Benoit Pigeon writes that he and a buddy have been mulling over the identitity of a dragster in the 1967 French film Les Aventuriers, thinking that it is maybe an Allard Dragster (above right). You can check it out at 10:34 and in action at 23:01 and 32:30 in the film which is available on YouTube at www.youtube.com/watch?v=mFSeHp19YsA. If you have any thoughts on the car's identity then drop us a line at email@example.com.
Back to this week's Scandinavian Internationals at Tierp Arena and Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the race will be available on Web TV courtesy of Smart TV for a one-off payment of €15. You can sign up at ppv.smarttv.se.
Editor's note: The Eurodragster.com team will shortly be Tierp-bound and this event is another very busy one for us so news updates may be sporadic from midweek. Postings to our Jeff Bull Race Engines-sponsored Swap Meet will be suspended from this Wednesday until Tuesday of next week. Please keep the news items coming to firstname.lastname@example.org, though, and we will post what we can when we can although priority will be given to our Scandinavian Internationals coverage.
14th August: Today (Friday) is the official closing date for entry to the FIA / FIM European Finals, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September. Entry after today, if accepted, may be subject to a Late Entry penalty. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.
Donna Finnegan writes that entry is now closed for Santa Pod Raceway's Junior Drag Racing Fun Day on Wednesday 26th August 2015. Due to overwhelming demand, admission tickets for the event have sold out. Only those who pre-booked tickets will be guaranteed entry. Each Junior entrant will get an allocation of four tickets and can gain access from 12:00 midday to 17:00 on Tuesday 25th or from 07:00 on Wednesday 26th.
Web site updates.
14th August: Our good buddy Chris Eyre has updated his European Nostalgia Funny Car web site with pictures and videos of the action from Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway, including the début of the new car from Bob Glassup. "This was my first Dragstalgia as a spectator and what an amazing event it is!", says Chris. "That said I am still looking forward to getting back to crew duties. Not only this but we have news and an artist's impression of Jon Best's nw Funny Car, what a beauty it will be for sure. Also check out the updated team pages to see all the cars on the track or about to hit it soon!". You can check it all out at euronostalgiafunnycar.jimdo.com/news.
Chaos at the finish line.
13th August: Lawrie Gatehouse has announced that both he and his record-holding Chaos Fuel Altered will be retiring from racing at the end of this season. Lawrie writes:
Some of you may know that I have been involved, in one way or another and a fan of drag racing, for fifty one years. Ten years ago I started to campaign Chaos and the first few years were challenging to say the least. However, the last four years have seen unprecedented levels of performance increases, beyond my expectations. With a best ET of 6.081 seconds and a terminal speed of 232.76 mph, this was way beyond what I had expected at the start of 2005.
Having said that, for a number of reasons, including health issues and lower energy levels, the time has come to retire the car and myself, after the UK National Finals in September. I have enjoyed the journey and I have no doubt that I will miss the buzz. The journey has, largely, been fulfilling, helped in no small part by the support of the fans, the tracks, clubs, media, friends and last but not least, the superb crew and drivers of Chaos on the voyage.
So to you all I say, enjoy your passion and stay safe and well as I fade quietly into the background – thanks for the memories.
VW Action offers test opportunity.
13th August: Brian Burrows has been in touch to remind all those planning to race at September's FIA / FIM European Finals that a prepped track will be available at VW Action at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd August:
This includes both the Saturday and the Sunday and a really cool night session on the Saturday. Classes and cars booked in so far include VWDRC, Outlaw Flat Fours, Old Skool Fords, Supercharged Outlaws and Outlaw Street, along with a whole host of very quick European VWs including twelve-second camper vans and eight-second VW Golfs!
VW Action is a really great family event in its own right (We can vouch for this - Ed). It is the longest running VW Show in the world and has in one form or another been the true Jewel in the Crown of UK VW events - embraced by all who have attended previous events. 2015's event is set to be better than ever with its Swinging 60s Mods and Rockers theme, RWYB / Test and Tune including night racing on the famous Santa Pod drag strip, massive Show and Shine events on both Saturday and Sunday with over seventy trophies and £1500 prize money, free stuff for the kids including face painter, bouncy castle and circus skills which will cost parents nothing, free autojumble plots, traders, charity auction, top DJs and live bands, free camping with weekend tickets and loads, loads, loads more.
VW Action really is the best place for a true VW enthusiast on the weekend of 21st-23rd August. Discounted advance tickets and full details of this comprehensive event can be found at www.vwaction.com/vwaction/index.php.
13th August: A reminder that tomorrow (Friday) is the official closing date for entry to the FIA / FIM European Finals, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September. Entry after tomorrow, if accepted, may be subject to a Late Entry penalty. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 4 of the official European Finals entry list which you can check out by clicking here.
Good luck and stay safe to ex-pat-UK Top Alcohol Dragster racer Michael Manners of Eurodragster.com sponsor Cosmo Residences and Swedish Top Methanol Funny Car racer Jonnie Lindberg who are competing at this weekend's NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series round at Heartland Park, Topeka. Qualifying commences today and you will be able to stay in touch with Mike's and Jonnie's progress on the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com.
Travelling in time at Hockenheim.
13th August: Bob Hawkins writes that Team Time Traveller had an amazing time at the 30th NitrOlympX where he and Sarah Howells flew the flag for the Wild Bunch:
Unfortunately one of the lanes got melted by one of the jet cars in the Saturday Night Show which meant that only I was able to do a fire burnout due to time constraints. However it turned out to be one of our most spectacular to date as a strong tailwind caused the flames to engulf the entire bodywork, cockpit and engine in flames, setting fire to the blower bag and also causing a fair old stumble due to the oxygen starvation! It did cross my mind at one point "What the hell am I doing sitting here in the middle of a huge bonfire in front of thousands of people!". However, with a little light pedalling came a huge rev from our blown 434 ci small block and we were out and smoking away up the track.
Then after few dry hops and a strong launch TT2 disappeared into the darkness at the top end with an eighth mile time consistent with a high six-second quarter mile pass, which was just fantastic! Back home we were all agreed it was fabulous and we can't wait to do it all over again.
We ran an exhibition match race with our two cars on Sunday afternoon and Sarah got a great holeshot on me (sleeping on the tree after the celebrations of the night before) and went on to record a new 8.4-second PB in the process! I believe this was also Sarah's first experience driving a nitrous engined car, it was very a swift and impressive run!
Very many thanks to Jerry Lackey and to all the organisers and track crew for inviting us, for the superb track, and for an incredible event which will stay in our memories for many years to come.
Thirty NitrOlympX years on film.
13th August: Mathias Schneider writes that the 30 Years of the NitrOlympX documentary was premiered last week at a cinema in Mannheim, minutes from the Hockenheimring:
Host and Track Announcer Benni Voss talked to Hockenheimring CEO Georg Seiler, Race Director Jerry Lackey, President of the local Motorsports Club Jörg Bensemann and Head of Marketing Jorn Teske who took care of the production of the documentary. Georg Seiler gave a little history of drag racing at Hockenheim and made it very clear that the event had been a huge success from day one. He called the NitrOlympX "Our baby which is here to stay". In 2009 the Hockenheimring took over the event from promoter Rico Anthes who started drag racing at the Ring in 1986. The team were expecting a record crowd at the coming event which was almost sold out beforehand.
Jerry Lackey promised that this year's event would feature the best track ever offered to the three hundred competing teams having spent €65,000 in materials. Later Benni Voss explained that Jerry and his crew had found a new, much more gentle method to remove the rubber from the track after the event which provided a much better base to prepare the track for this year and for the future allowing quicker and easier prep if there is a shorter amount of time available. There was also a look into Jerry's history, Jerry being responsible for bringing drag racing to Germany when he ran small local events almost fifty years ago.
Members of the press plus some lucky fans who won tickets through the Hockenheimring Facebook page then had the chance to see the premier of the documentary, a nice hour-long movie which shows the history of drag racing at Hockenheim and which is loosely based around characters like Urs Erbacher, Rico Anthes, Eric Teboul and other fan favorites. The DVD also features tons of bonus material such as all of the event programmes from past events. The DVD can be ordered on-line through the NitrOlympX web site.
My Shoebox is my Bond.
12th August: After five years racing his Webster Race Engineering-built Mustang in Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator, the UK's Andy Bond and team have decided to move with the times and make the switch to turbo power for 2016.
Andy's Mustang is tagged to 8.50 but the class front-runners are now surging through the 7.50s so the idea of upgrading the Mustang was fairly quickly discounted and other avenues pursued. Andy has always been a fan of the tri-Chevy body styles, already owning a very nice '55, and so he has acquired the UK-registered, 25.1E-tagged ex-Paul Warne and -Lazenby family '56.
Andy says that his plans for the car will follow the well-trodden ground taken by his Street Eliminator colleagues including a 700-ish cubic inch spread-bore Chevrolet motor from the shop which built the speed-record holding engine in Richard Billings' Mustang: ICE Automotive of Silverstone. Target horsepower is comfortably less than 2,500 which all parties involved consider will be sufficient to put the car where they want to be. Where is that, and how long will it take? Roll on 2016.
Andy's Mustang can be found for sale on our Jeff Bull Race Engines-sponsored Swap Meet.
Hot, hotter, hottest.
12th August: Finnish Top Fuel Dragster racer Anita Mäkelä found that the heat came in three grades at the weekend's NitrOlympX at Hockenheim:
Hot: It was hot at Hockenheim. I have always thought that racing over 30C wouldn't be possible. But I survived 40 C with helmet and firesuit, so no heat can ever beat me!
Hotter: The qualifying sessions didn't go as planned. We had small problems finding the way in such heat. Number four spot in the field made my race day even hotter.
Hottest: It was fun to run together with Urs Erbacher in the Night Show. A 4.17 told us that we were on the right track.
After the Night Show we put in a fresh engine for Sunday's raceday. But in the first round of eliminations, #3 rod broke at the hit and turned me into a fireball and I had my hottest moment of the race. The engine damage was due to an oil pressure problem. All I could say was congratulations to Duncan Micallef and his team.
It took a while to get over it. I came to win and to run three-second passes, but I ended up with nothing. There is always the next race. I heard the guys talking about putting the "Happy Engine" back in with fresh parts. So let's see what happens at Tierp.
The track crew did an amazing job with the track. With decent temperatures you would have seen several three-second runs, but the heat was something new to us European racers. Thank you to Jerry and the whole Hockenheim crew, it was a pleasure to race on your track.
12th August: UK Super Pro ET racer Simon Gough probably has a good claim on runner-up for Worst NitrOlympX Weekend, with wife Sharron the winner:
Everything went well to begin with. We met up with the others en route to Dover but ten miles down the M20 the Motorhome just cut out. I called Jon at our sponsor LAS Motorhomes and described what happened, whilst on the phone we tried several things so that we could eliminate reasons but with no success. We called the breakdown company to see what they could do, but they couldn't do anything. They ordered a lorry to pick up the motorhome and take it to a repair place in Kent. This is when things went bad to worse! The lorry which picked up the Motorhome scratched it all down one side. We then waited until eighth at night for the auto electrician to come out to tell us what he thought it was. Two hours later we were still in the same place without an idea. That night we slept in the motorhome including Dan on the sofa and Jim in the hey shed.
The next morning I said that I was going to try to get us a minibus just to get us and our equipment there. After spending three hours trying I said to Dan to ring a taxi and go to my house to pick up the Land Rover. Three hours later Dan returned, and we spent twenty minutes cramming everything we could into the Land Rover. I made another quick call to get the motorhome away from these people and get her up to Jon at LAS Motorhomes to deal with. £980 later and the motorhome is to be picked up and taken to John.
Thirty five hours later than planned, off we went to Hockenheim and we got there forty four hours after we left home, at four in the morning on Thursday. All four of us were on the pissed off side to be honest. We were happy to be there but too tired to be happy about it. I signed on and got the car ready for scrutineering, all done after four hours in unbearable heat. Sharron wasn't feeling to good but we said we would give it a few hours and see what she was like. A few hours went past and she wasn't getting any better so we went to see the doctor in the Medical Centre. Nobody was there at that moment so we went into town to find another Medical Centre but no one was there either. We went to a pharmacy for medication to see if it would work.
The next morning Sharron woke me up and she was in a very bad way. I said "Right that's it, I'm taking you home" and two hours later we started a slow drive to Dunkerque. Sharron is my world and her welfare comes before anyone or anything. When we got to the port Sharron said that she had texted Nic Williams at OCS Paint asking if he wanted to drive me back to Hockenheim after we got home. I new full well that I would only have one more qualifyng session to get into the thirty two car field. At 20:30 I met up with Nic in his Audi RS4, which was needed as we had twelve hours to get there before we were called. So we needed to get the ten o'clock ferry and we made it with five minutes to spare. After a two-hour crossing we managed to get back to Hockenheim at a quarter to four in the morning after three fuel stops. You can do the maths yourselves.
We got our heads down for a few hours before we our one shot, got up about 07:30 to get the car ready and an hour later were called. I made a call to Sharron to see how she was and I could not hear her too well so I knew she wasn't in a good place. She was very sick. That was playing on my mind; nothing felt right, something was missing. It's the first time and the last time. I was missing Sharron. The dial in wasn't right, nothing was right. That was it, game over. I waited the rest of the day to watch the Night Show, and yet again with ninety thousand people there it still seemed empty to me. Sharron is such a big part part of my life, and if she's not there it seems like nothing I do matters. I stayed overnight to try to catch up with some sleep and left Hockenheim at 13:30 on Sunday.
There are so many people to whom I want to say thank you: Dan Devlin, Jim Massey, Jon Giles, Donna Giles, Nic Williams and many more. The biggest thank you is to my wife Sharron. It just goes to prove that you only need one change in your life and with that one change everything can go wrong. See you all at the European Finals.
Orange Pop on tour.
12th August: Simon Barlow and the UK's Orange Pop Drag Race Team were invited to attend the NSRA Summer Nationals at the weekend and team member Martin writes that it was a truly fantastic weekend:
The weather was amazing, as was the turnout from vehicle owners and public alike, who seemed to have arrived en mass by the thousands on Sunday, filling the Old Warden Park venue to capacity. The turnout on both Friday and Saturday was also very respectable indeed and the assembled rods, customs and yanks seemed to wind endlessly around the grassed areas surrounding the country house and college, making it an almost impossible task to view every vehicle on site. The relaxed atmosphere was magical and pervaded the whole site for the duration of the show. The public were well catered for with, amongst other facilities, a fair, trade area, competitions and the all-important ice cream van which seemed to be constantly serving ices to the assembled masses.
The Orange Pop Drag Team arrived on the Thursday after a hectic thrash to get both cars ready and loaded, a logistical exercise even the army would have been proud of. With both the trailer and the transporter emptied of their precious cargoes upon arrival, the display was arranged in a prime location in the trade area, opposite the Wall of Death and under the welcome shade of a huge oak tree! The team spent the weekend speaking with countless members of the public who were eager to have their questions about the cars answered. People were pleased to be given the opportunity for photographs with the cars and eagerly clambered in over the roll cages, with sheer delight etched upon their faces. One young visitor could not disguise his delight and was heard to repeat himself over and over "Amazing, amazing!".
The team further treated the public with two ear splitting fire-ups of the Fordson van each day. The fire-ups drew a huge crowd around the car on each occasion, giving those drag racing virgins an experience of true noise nirvana. The team also gave away a large number of gift bags containing amongst other things a poster, hero card, sweets and stickers, before stocks ran out.
The only issue the team had was a comical one, in that our exuberance took hold at one point and it seemed a really good idea to jump in the Pop and cruise the site looking uber-cool, only to discover that we did not have enough fuel. Lesson learned! Thanks to Wobbly Bob and his Scottish mate (sorry did not get the name) who came to our embarrassed aid with a can of Go Juice.
The Orange Pop Drag Team would like to extend their thanks to the NSRA staff both for the invitation to the event and for the hospitality afforded us.
Web site updates.
12th August: Our good buddy Remco Scheelings is as ever hard at work, posting his NitrOlympX coverage on the Netherlands' Autosport web site. You can check out the on-track report by clicking here and the off-track report by clicking here.
The official web site of the UK's Paul Marston Racing has had a makeover and a new address courtesy of team member Jordan Brasted. You can find out about the multi-car and multi-faceted team at www.paulmarstondragracing.com.
10th August: Congratulations to the winners at the weekend's 30th NitrOlympX at Hockenheim:
FIA Top Fuel Dragster: Micke Kågered 4.178/456.33 def. Urs Erbacher 4.508/312.42
FIA Top Methanol Dragster: Dennis Habermann 5.438/421.78 def. Timo Habermann 5.440/419.99
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car: Leif Andréasson 5.892/392.09 def. Jürgen Nagel 7.681/245.38
FIA Pro Modified: Micke Gullqvist 6.033/385.48 def. Mats Eriksson 6.139/372.27
FIM Europe Top Fuel Bike: Ian King 6.372/327.00 def. Rikard Gustafsson 6.700/303.26
FIM Europe Supertwin: Martijn de Haas 6.756/327.05 def. Job Heezen no time
FIM Europe Pro Stock Bike: Gert-Jan Laseur 7.148/294.79 def. Fredrik Fredlund 7.193/298.23
FIM European Super Street Bike Cup: Rick Stubbins 7.164/322.29 def. Garry Bowe 7.409/303.43
Comp Eliminator: Robin Sattler (9.65) 9.297/189.94 def. Stefan Winter (8.32) 8.449/222.03
Super Pro ET: Eric Angeloni (7.50) 7.526/238.67 def. Barry Giles (7.48) 7.507/286.05
Pro ET: Philipp Daud (10.25) 10.282/205.72 def. Gerd Habermann (9.78) 9.840/206.79 DQ red
Super Comp: Andre Müller 8.908/251.37 def. Erich Mathis 8.758/257.35 DQ b/o
Super Gas: Jon Giles 10.433/188.48 def. Andrea Villi 14.720/87.01 DQ red light
Junior Dragster: Lucas Dubourget (8.60) 8.573/124.18 def. Simon Andersson (8.00) 8.060/128.82 DQ red
Supercharged Outlaws: Andy Hadfield +0.004
Funny Bike: Stefan Hagenstein 7.545/281.46 def. Kars van den Belt 7.704/287.23
Supertwin Top Gas: Fredrik Schack 7.654/260.44 def. Cord Albers 7.738/275.67
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored reports, pit notes and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
European Finals entry extended.
10th August: Thanks to Ian Marshall for letting us know that the official closing date for entry to the FIA / FIM European Finals, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September, has been extended to Friday of this week (14th). Entry after this Friday, if accepted, may be subject to a Late Entry penalty. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.
The next update of the official European Finals entry list will be posted tomorrow (Tuesday) earliest. You can check out the current version by clicking here.
European Finals Prizegiving update.
5th August: Trakbak Racing Ltd have forwarded us an important notice about the Championship Prizegiving which will take place at Santa Pod Raceway on the Sunday evening of the FIA / FIM European Finals, 6th September:
Trakbak Racing Ltd are pleased to announce that, for the first time, the FIA / FIM European Finals Championship Prize Giving will be free of charge for Championship teams to attend and collect their trophies. Each team finishing in the top three Championship positions of the following classes will each be given ten free tickets to attend the event:
All trophies are provided by Trakbak Racing Ltd.
A self-service buffet meal and musical entertainment are included in your ticket. Admittance is strictly by ticket only and due to space and safety restrictions we are sadly unable to accommodate more people than those listed above. Teams who cannot attend or do not wish to attend may donate their tickets to other FIA / FIM Championship teams who wish to do so.
Further details on ticket distribution will be made nearer the time.
We wish all riders and drivers good luck in the coming rounds of your respective Championships.
5th August: Further to yesterday's Snippet, many thanks to Peter Calwer for letting us know that not only will this weekend's free NitrOlympX Web TV be available on the event's Home Page at www.nitrolympx.de but that, as it was last year, it will also be accessible on the web sites of Santa Pod TV and Track Group Europe. We will of course include links to all three locations on the Event Index of our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored NitrOlympX coverage. The Web TV broadcast commences on Saturday morning but you will be able to rely on our real-time race reports to stay in touch on Friday.
Here at Eurodragster.com we love to play "Did you notice" with entry lists and, on the subject of the NitrOlympX, Jan Phersson of Eurodragster.com sponsor Simpson Europe got in touch to point out the attendance at Hockenheim of Jens Eklund in his ultra-rapid Comp Eliminator Audi. "The car is a crowd pleaser and I'm sure that German Audi fans would like to know that Jens will be there", says Jan. Having seen Jens in action and more than once been on our feet applauding him we can only agree. You can get a taster of what is to come with a video clip from Mantorp Park this past weekend; check it out at youtu.be/e6uvd0BzPuc.
UK Pro ET racer James Forster has revealed that yesterday's spy picture revealed a small part of the new livery of his Mustang, and has now given us a look at the whole car. James will now be racing under the name of 4Star Racing and has set up a Facebook page which he encourages readers to Like.
We would like to say a big Happy Birthday with added hugs to Libby Mottershead. Have a lovely day Lady Lib. It came too late for yesterday's news update so a belated Happy 17th Birthday for yesterday (Tuesday) to UK Junior Dragster racer Paige Wheeler. Hope you had a great day Paige.
Editor's note: The Eurodragster.com team is Hockenheim-bound and this event is one of our busiest so news updates may be sporadic over the next few days. Postings to our Jeff Bull Race Engines-sponsored Swap Meet will be suspended until next Tuesday. Please keep the news items coming to email@example.com, though, and we will post what we can when we can although priority will be given to our NitrOlympX coverage.
Web site updates.
5th August: Ellsa Karlsson was the surprising winner in Pro Stock Motorcycle at Gardermoen Raceway. In an all-female final the seventeen-year-old rookie defeated her nineteen-year-old sister Elvira to take her first victory of her still young PSM career. Another major surprise was in Super Street Bike, where the top three qualifiers failed and Nils-Ola Andersson took a well-deserved win in the third round of the EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship. No upsets in Super Twin Motorcycle, as Samu Kemppainen won his second consecutive race of the 2015 EDRS Pro Nordic MC season. Jan Sturla Hegre gave the Norwegian home crowd something to cheer about with a win in Top Fuel Motorcycle. You can read more in Remco Scheelings' latest report on the EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship web site at www.edrspro.com.
European Finals entry.
4th August: Friday of this week (7th) is the closing date for entry to the FIA / FIM European Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September and which is the final round of the 2015 FIA European Drag Racing and FIM Europe Drag Bike Championships as well as a round of the UK National Drag Racing Championships. Entry after Friday, if accepted, may be subject to a Late Entry penalty. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.
Many thanks to Ian Marshall for sending us Version 2 of the official European Finals entry list which you can check out by clicking here.
4th August: 18:00 Further to our Snippet at the weekend it has been confirmed that, in association with Trakbak Racing and Track Group Europe, Saturday and Sunday of this weekend's NitrOlympX will be broadcast live and free on Web TV. Production will be by the same team who brought you the excellent broadcasts of last year's NitrOlympX and European Finals and this year's FIA / FIM Main Event. As well as qualifying and eliminations on Saturday and Sunday, the broadcast will include the famous Night Show on Saturday evening. The Web TV will be available on the NitrOlympX web site at www.nitrolympx.de.
The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came with the words "New livery hitting the race track soon". If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Des Taylor has asked us to thank the hundreds of people who have messaged, texted and E-Mailed Karen and himself with best wishes since they were injured in an overnight incident in the pits at the Mopar EuroNationals. "We are both deeply touched and very grateful for everyone's support", says Des. "We may be out of action for a while but we will be starting the rebuilding process soon. If anyone has a N/S 1970 Chevy Nova SS front wing, grill, headlight bezel and bumper in either fibreglass or steel then I would be most grateful if they could contact me at email@example.com."
Public Race Days mark track success.
3rd August: The Public Race Days, Hockenheim's curtain-raising Run What You Brung for the following weekend's NitrOlympX, has always been a good indicator of what the track has in store for the Big One. Matze Schneider writes that the Public Race Days have also become an important date calendar of Import / Tuning racers, with pictures by Markus Münch:
This weekend a Who's Who of the Import and Tuning scene gathered at Hockenheim along with a nice field of racers to test and tune before next weekend. There had been lots of talk, rumour and speculation prior to this year's 30th Anniversary NitrolympX. After the track had a difficult surface for the last two years, everybody was curious to see if Race Director Jerry Lackey and his team could pull it off in 2015. The circumstances were much better this year as there was no Formula One event in Hockenheim weeks before the PRDs and NitrolympX, so the track prep started six weeks ago and the weather allowed almost constant work.
On Saturday Werner Habermann Racing visited the track during the Public Race Days and brought their Grip-o-Meter. A Facebook post showed that even before the first cars ran down the track the traction gauge showed that the track already matched the Habermanns' last such test at Santa Pod Raceway. "The first two hundred metres of the track are already like this" added Markus Münch who kept very close eye on the track all weekend.
So the major part of the work is done, and this was easy to see as the Sports Compact racers seemed to have a lot of fun at the weekend. There were new Personal Bests on almost every run, countless eight-second passes with a total of nine cars in the eights and a lot more in the low nines. Alexander Keresztesi from Austria in his Nissan Skyline GT-R clocked the quickest ET for Sports Compacts of the weekend at 8.34. Records were reset in many other categories as well and a lot of driveshaft, gearbox and other carnage tells the story of a sticky track surface as well.
More than five hundred racers and full grandstands on Saturday and Sunday prove the status of the Public Race Days. Overall the first weekend of quater mile racing at Hockenheim in 2015 was a huge success, and the stage is set for another great weekend of racing, the 30th NitrOlympX with packed pits and stands.
You can see more of Markus Münch's excellent pictures at www.dragmag.de/prd-hockenheim-2015.
The entire Eurodragster.com team of Kirstie, Simon, Julian and Tog will be at Hockenheim to bring you all the news from the NitrOlympX in association with John Woolfe Racing. Our service of real-time reports, pit notes and galleries commences on Friday morning but you can check out our NitrOlympX Event Index, which includes links to the official entry list and provisional running orders, by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. We will also bring you news of the planned webcast as soon as we receive it.
Drag Challenge at Gardermoen Raceway.
1st August: The Drag Challenge at Gardermoen Raceway organised by Norsk Dragracing Gardermoen and Speedgroup got under way yesterday.
There is no webcam for this event but you will be able to see results here. The event is a round of the Top Doorslammer championship and all classes in the EDRS Pro Bike championship. A report by Remco Scheelings on day one of the EDRS Pro Bike qualifying is here.
Top Fuel Dragster racer Birgitte Bremnes plans to make three passes during the weekend in her RFM car. Norwegian TV showed an interview with Birgitte with plenty of onboard footage here.
Ultimate Street Car at Santa Pod.
1st August: This weekend at Santa Pod features Ultimate Street Car modified car festival, which includes rounds of the FWD and JDS Championships.
Full details can be seen at the dedicated web site for Ultimate Street Car and the Facebook page.
Bug Jam Sportsman ET report.
1st August: Many thanks to Conor Holt for sending us a review of Sportsman ET at Bug Jam: The biggest field of the year and joint highest ever was entered into Sportsman ET for Bug Jam this year with an impressive 23 cars entered, matching the entry for the Fall Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway in 2002 for the largest field ever seen in the class.
The weekend started with an unplanned trip for Matthew Moxon as there was an unfortunate incident where his keys got locked inside the car meaning he had to go back to Hull to get the spare set so he could race on the Saturday. The event also had some newcomers to the class such as Fifth Gear's Jonny Smith in his fully electric Enfield 8000 and Paige Reeves who only got her Competition licence on the Friday before the event.
In the first session Natalie Laugher went very close to taking the Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light award with a 0.001 red. Felicity Gibbs took the early lead, running a 17.368 on a 17.36 dial in.
On to session two, and Jon Crawford also came close to taking the Perfect Light award, pulling a 0.008 light. However the £100 Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light award was finally taken in the very next run by John Przybyl with a 0.0004 RT in his Vauxhall Omega which gained him £100. In the final session of the day, Holly Sanders made a big move from number 22 all the way to the top with a 15.107 on a 15.10 dial-in.
Sunday had three more sessions of qualifying. Jonny Smith moved from number 23 to 16 with a 12.462 on a 12.34 dial-in in his Flux-Capacitor Enfield 8000. Tony Underhill moved up into the number 3 spot from number 12 running a 14.163 on a 14.15 dial-in. Alan Medley moved up into the number 5 spot as well, with a 13.615 on a 13.60 Dial-in.
There was a near perfect match up between Paige Reeves and Spencer Tramm in the first pair in Q5, with Spencer pulling a 0.000 RT (the money having already gone to John Przybyl in Q2) and Paige going to number 1 with a near perfect 15.552 on a 15.55 dial-in, just 0.002 off the Eurodragster.com/Gold RV Perfect ET award which had previously been won by Craig Wright in the final at the Summer Nationals.
Not long afterwards Ricky Hale made his latest attempt to go perfect running a 19.004 on a 19.00 dial-in. There was no movement in the final session, but a few questions were raised when Jonny Smith dialled-in a 11.99 even though the fastest you can run in Sportsman ET is a 12.00. 4 drivers ended qualifying with a 0.00 run and 16 running 0.09 or better on their dial-in.
The first round started off with a bit of a shock as Andy Dibley beat reigning champion and currently second in the championship Ricky Hale, with Ricky breaking out by 0.06 seconds. Confusion struck again when Alan Medley was given a red light in a match up against Stephen Cherrett even though he did not move however they were told to bring the cars around again to do a re-run because of Alan’s red light. On the re-run both drivers broke out Stephen doing it by the least (0.11 to a 0.12) giving him the win second time round.
Natalie Laugher red lit by 0.17 seconds in her match up with Craig giving him yet another round win. Next there was a close race between number four qualifier Felicity Gibb and Ethan Lisle, with Ethan winning by 0.021 seconds or two feet three inches. Double breakout in the race between Spencer Tramm and Sam Innes, 0.09 for Spencer and 0.06 for Sam giving the win to Sam.
Jane McCready was up against the latest Hale to race in the class, Jack Hale. Jack broke out by 0.17 seconds giving Jane and the Clueless racing crew their season aim of one round win, well done to them! Jonny Smith was a no-show in his 1st round match-up against Paul Pryzybl giving him a bye to the 2nd round.
Matthew Moxon pulled a 0.02 red light in his match up against Abi Tether giving Abi the win in the Sambasaurus. Gillian Medley carried on her great streak this season beating Luke Stevenson by 0.03 seconds or four feet despite breaking out by .08 seconds.
Holly Sanders got her first round win against John Pryzybl this was also very close, five feet four inches between them at the stripe with Holly running a 15.19 (15.05) and John running a 17.52 (14.48) in the Omega. In the final pair Jon Crawford lined up against Tony Underhill; Tony red lit by 0.188 seconds giving the win to Jon Crawford in the Sharan.
On to round two and the first pair out was Number One qualifier and newly licenced Paige Reeves against the run-away championship leader that is Craig Wright. Craig had a slight advantage off the line (0.14 to a 0.21) and carried that advantage all the way down the track winning by 0.08 seconds with a 16.473 on a 16.47 dial-in (0.003 off a perfect ET).
Next pair down was Jane McCready vs Holly Sanders. Holly had a 0.14 second better RT than Jane but Jane broke out by 0.8 seconds handing the win to Holly who broke out by 0.06 seconds. Samuel Innes, Ethan Lisle and Jon Crawford all broke out handing the wins to Stephen Cherrett, Abi Tether and Gillian Medley.
Craig Wright once again proved why he has been so successful over the past years in Sportsman ET by going even closer to perfect in his Quarter Final match up against Abi Tether running a 16.432 on a 16.43 dial-in. Gillian Medley and Andy Dibley were up next with the winner getting a bye into the final. Andy had a 0.19 second better RT and extended the lead to 0.23 seconds by the finish line running a 16.30 (16.28) against Gillian’s 15.53 (15.47). In the last pair Stephen had a better RT but Holly made up the deficit and went into the lead but broke out by 0.13 seconds giving the win to Stephen.
Craig Wright had a great 0.01 RT in his semi-final against Stephen Cherrett who had a 0.11 second RT. Stephen ran a 19.71 on a 19.65 dial-in which was no match for Craig who ran 16.43 on a 16.37 dial-in in the Damn Good Racing Civic. Andy Dibley took his bye and ran a 16.01 on a 16.28 dial-in.
So it was Craig Wright in the Damn Good Racing Honda Civic against Andy Dibley in the 50 Shades Of Green Racing Camaro. Craig dialled in a 16.37 and Andy dialled in a 16.20. Craig got a big lead of the line with a 0.06 RT compared to Andy’s 0.20 and carried the advantage all the way down the track running a 16.56 @ 78.55mph, winning the event by 0.23 seconds or 28 feet.
With that win Craig has wrapped up the SPRC championship and all-but won the Nationals championship with a 1,220 point lead at the top. Next round is the Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway.
Bonner and Taylor renew.
1st August: Nostalgia racer Nigel Taylor has been in touch to say the two cars he is involved with (Arthur Bonner's Detroit Spinner and Nigel's own Acute Anglia) have recently needed drastic engine surgery:
At the Nostalgia Nationals, the cam lifters in the Pontiac 400 engine in The Detroit Spinner decided to exit through the gallery, breaking the block, losing pushrods, bending valves and damaging lots in its path.
Arthur Bonner at the age of 74 still wants to race his home built car after 40+ years in the hot seat, so a decision was made to fit a 555ci Dart M block (Big block Chevy) 9.1 litre motor in the Pontiac's place. This will take a bit of altering in many places but will make all parts a bit more accessible if they do go wrong, and will liven the Prefect up a lot. Sharing driving duties in the Detroit Spinner with Arthur will be myself (at last); the grudge race between my brother (Paul Dale) in the Acute Angle 105e Anglia is shaping up to be good.
The Acute Anglia 105e also had engine failure at Dragstalgia and after Paul stripped it down it became a bit obvious why! The Anglia is now being fitted with a 355 cu in small block Chevy and 6/71 supercharger and nitrous (if needed); producing 600+ hp this should make the lightweight Anglia fly. Paul hopes to have the car back out for the 2015 Hot Rod Drags but the match race between the 600+ bhp lightweight space framed Anglia and the 800+ Bhp nostalgic half box, half tubed heavy Prefect will have to wait till early 2016.
Both teams would like to thank their families for playing such a big part in this addiction and the Detroit Spinner Racing team would like to thank all their sponsors for making this happen. Follow us on both Facebook pages : Detroit Spinner Racing and Acute Angle Racing Team.
1st August: Thanks to NitrOlympX PR Christine Calwer for letting us know that there will be a free webcast from Hockenheim next weekend. We will bring you full details including broadcast times as soon as we receive them.
Bengtsson's final ambition.
31st July: As the EDRS Nordic Pro Motorcycle Championship Series pulls in to Norway's Gardermoen Raceway this weekend Swedish Supertwin racer Per Bengtsson has high hopes for the Drag Challenge. After a runner-up finish in very hot conditions in Alastaro, Finland, the Beast team are now looking forward to good racing conditions as the Norwegian track and air are usually of very high quality.
"We have produced some of our quickest numbers in Norway with a best of 6.38 seconds and I always feel comfortable running at Gardermoen Raceway", says a confident Per. "This weekend we have eleven entries in Supertwin so the competition will be tough, just as we like it to be. We hope to produce some good numbers in qualifaying and the ambition on Sunday is to race in the final."
You can follow the Beast Drag Bike Team's progress over the weekend on their web site at www.bentec.net where short reports will be published daily. The team is also on Facebook under the name The Beast Dragbike where short notes from the racing action can be found.
IoPD backs Hall of Fame Gala.
31st July: The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame has announced that the International Organisation of Professional Drivers has joined the list of sponsors supporting the BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner being held at the Savill Court Hotel, Windsor Great Park, on 21st November 2015.
The IOPD was formed in 1990 by Steve Murty along with Edwin and Karimah MacKnight to regulate and support the driving experience sector of recreational motor sport in the UK. It was brought about by the MSA/RAC refusal to recognise and permit Run What You Brung events and track driving activities thereby denying participants and organisers a route to legitimisation and parity with main stream motor sports.
From the IOPDs recognition by the Department of Transport and subsequent statutory empowerment in 1991, the IOPD soon grew to be disapplying the Road Traffic Act for some 70,000 to 100,000 participants per year, not only for driving experiences but for full competition and drag racing. The IOPD also took on the authorising of some thorty eight other disciplines of recreational auto activity across activities involving between one and eight wheels activities, including tracked and jet thrust vehicles; in fact any discipline from Mini Moto to F1. Through its statutory powers, the IOPD also authorises and permits many of the world’s international motor manufacturers’ driving experience programs and track days.
The IOPD is proud to authorise and license twelve sprint and drag racing venues in the UK, including speed record testing and demonstrations. These venues have catered for in excess of ten thousand participants and one million spectators over a twenty year period. The IOPD has also pioneered permitting closed road motor racing demonstrations in city centre locations for up to a quarter of a million spectators per event. The IOPD continues to defend organisers and participants for corporate manslaughter charges and charges of death by dangerous driving including HSE / EHO prosecutions whilst assisting coroners, police EHO and HSE officers with prosecution against negligent operators.
BDRHoF Chairman Stu Bradbury said "Steve Murty has been a constant friend of the BDRHoF since the beginning with sponsorship from the Pennine Drag Racing Club and York Raceway. It is great that he has added the IOPD to our list of backers. It is an organisation that has several times played a crucial role in the development of British drag racing when times have been tough. Its constant support of RWYB and dragster demonstrations is still fundamental to getting drag racing to the people."
Steve Murty said "The BDRHoF has always supported York Raceway and the PDRC with Stu and Bev Bradbury being regular guests at the PDRC Annual Dinner to present northern-based BDRHoF Inductees with their trophies. We attended last year’s Gala Awards Dinner at the Savill Court and what a fantastic feeling it was to see drag racers honoured in style at such a prestigious event. I have been waiting for something like this to happen for many years. Furthermore, the BDRHoF is a totally non political impartial organisation dedicated to recognising and celebrating the special people that have given so much to create our sport today. This has to be supported and the IOPD is only too pleased that we can help."
Ticket prices for the Gala Dinner will remain as last year at £60 per person. Corporate tables of ten are available at £580. Room prices also remain as last year, £99 for double and £79 for single including breakfast. Complimentary use of swimming pool, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi, and free car parking are also part of the package. For advance booking of Gala Dinner tickets contact firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone Stu Bradbury on 01933 279102. No deposits will be required until the summer but when other plans come together this will again be an early sell-out event.
For room bookings call the Savill Court Hotel on 01784 472000 quoting Hall of Fame dinner 21st November.
31st July: Shakespeare County Raceway's Jerry Cookson has been in touch to remind everyone who may have considered attending, Sunday’s (2nd August) Street Drags at Shakespeare County Raceway has been cancelled.
The Pink Lady goes Nitro.
29th July: UK Super Pro ET racer Jayne Kay has announced that she will be licencing in the Shockwave Fuel Funny Car at Santa Pod Raceway at Mini in the Park in mid-August. Jayne is no stranger to Funny Cars having driven the Pink Lady FC before her current altered, but this is her first taste of nitro and the fulfilment of a long-held ambition.
"It doesn't quite feel real yet", says Jayne. "This has been my ultimate goal since racing in Junior Dragster, and the chance has come a lot sooner than I imagined! Dad gave me the best opportunity to learn how to drive a Funny Car when he purchased the ex-Frank Manzo Top Methanol Funny Car from Dan Larsen in 2009. We raced in Super Pro ET for a couple of years to gain experience with a plan of stepping into TMFC. However when the Pink Lady Funny Car was sold, we decided to have a go at racing a blown altered, which we have really been enjoying this year!
"Lots of things have been happening this season. We have had new sponsors join the team, we have qualified high in the tough Super Pro class in a front-engined blown car, and we have been planning our step up into the Fuel Funny Car ranks. Dave Bryant approached me before the announcement of Gordon's retirement as a potential new driver for the team and we have been working hard to get to this stage since then. I’ve been spending time with Dave, Gordon and all of the Shockwave team at the track and in the workshop, and I am really grateful to them for giving me my first taste of nitro during a warm up in the Shockwave Fuel funny Car over the Main Event weekend!
"I want to say a massive thank you to my Mum, Dad and Peter for their support and help with getting me get to this stage, as well as the fantastic Shockwave Racing crew, who have worked so hard to get the car turned around so that I can licence. Huge thanks to Gordon and Dave for putting their faith in me as a driver.
"I’d also like to say a big thank you to Wheel Whores, who have been with me since 2011. I am so happy that they will be continuing their support throughout our Fuel Funny Car Racing. Also thanks to Trophy Queen, WrapKings, RW Custom Paint, Custom Coach Trimming, SimpsonLids and Peter Walters Race Design for their continued support."
Jayne's dad Gary has always been confident that one day she would race in Fuel Funny Car. "I am very proud of Jayne's achievements so far, and of all the hard work she has put in to getting to this stage with the Shockwave team", he says. "I had the confidence in her ability to put her in a Funny Car aged sixteen and I am sure she will succeed in this next stage in her drag racing career."
Event entry update.
29th July: Entry is still open for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, a round of the UK National and ACU UK Drag Bike Championships as well as a round for a number of other series, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th-31st August. Racers competing in ET and Super classes and Lucas Oil Junior Dragster are reminded to pay particular attention to revisions in the Supplementary Regulations and Indemnity notices. You can download entry forms from the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.
Friday of next week (7th August) is the closing date for entry to the FIA / FIM European Finals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 3rd-6th September and which is the final round of the 2015 FIA European Drag Racing and FIM Europe Drag Bike Championships as well as a round of the UK National Drag Racing Championships. Entry after next Friday, if accepted, may be subject to a Late Entry penalty. You can download entry forms from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. Many thanks to Ian Marshall for sending us Version 1 of the official entry list which you can check out by clicking here.
29th July: Further to our news item of 10th July, UK Pro Modified racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Andy Robinson is now offering his T-Shirt in Adult S, M, L, XL, XXL and XXXL at £15 and Youth XS and S (£10) and Youth M and L (£12). Up to the end of the MSA Pro Modified season, the UK National Finals in late September, Postage and Packing will be half price at £2.50. To order yours call 01256 880589 or E-Mail to email@example.com. "We are aiming to get back to the track for the European Finals after our engine damage from the Mopars", says Stef Robinson, "but until we have our engine fixed nothing is for certain."
FIA Commission discuss 2016.
28th July: FIA Drag Racing Commission Vice President Lars Pettersson writes that their annual meeting took place at Bandimere Speedway in Denver last Wednesday and Thursday:
We worked on the FIA rules for the 2016 season. We received ideas and proposals from teams and officials in the FIA Championships, from NHRA, and from ASN / Federations in the Commission. We evaluated all of the proposals, made changes and took decisions for 2016. The changes will be publicised at the end of the year after the FIA's World Motor Sport Council has ratified them.
We had a long and productive discussion about the 2015 and 2016 FIA European Championships. One of the outcomes was that the FIA will help to raise the standards of how a new or temporary track is prepared before an event. The event organisers will report upon preparation work before the event and the FIA's Race Director will oversee the work. Another item agreed was the travel compensation has been adjusted for 2016; we hope that this helps teams to travel around the Championship more and that there will be more teams at the events.
At the meeting we learned that the future of drag racing around the world looks very good, based on the report given by members of the Commission. We had Commission members from Bahrain, Finland, Germany, Hungary, India, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Ukraine and the USA.
On behalf of all of the members of the FIA Drag Racing Commission I would like to take this opportunity to thank NHRA, ACCUS and John Bandimere and his family and staff at Bandimere Speedway for their hospitality and for the excellent arrangements which made us feel welcome both at the meeting and afterwards at the Mopar Mile High Nationals.
28th July: Many thanks to Andy Marrs of TSI Timers Europe for forwarding us the official timing data from the Mopar EuroNationals. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
We have a birthday on the Eurodragster.com team today. Please join Kirstie, Tog and Julian in wishing Pit Reporter, Blog Editor, Links Editor and Photographer Simon a very Happy Birthday. Have a great day buddy.
Mopar EuroNationals rained out.
28th July: Sunday's MSA Pro Modified and Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman eliminations were rained out at the Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway. Rain bookended the event with track action only possible on the middle day, Saturday.
Congratulations to the number one qualifiers:
MSA Pro Modified: Robert Joosten 6.2051/232.77
UK Top Sportsman Fast Bracket: Nick Curtis +0.0082 9.6082/119.00
UK Top Sportsman Heads Up: Rick Garrett 6.4748/214.81
The Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award went unclaimed and so has been increased to £75 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway.
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored reports, pit notes and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Junior Fun Day entry closing.
24th July: Now in its third year the Junior Fun Day, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on Wednesday 26th August, continues to go from strength to strength. Donna Finnegan of Santa Pod Raceway writes that over five and a half thousand tickets have been pre-booked by spectators and that Junior racers wishing to participate in the on-track activities should submit their entries within the next few days:
The Junior Fun Day provides the perfect platform to showcase Junior drag racing and gives the Junior racers the chance to perform in front of youthful peers. For the third year running, race entry is free. Each race entrant will be allocated four tickets which can be collected on arrival either on Tuesday 25th or Wednesday 26th August. If you need more tickets then please book them directly on-line via www.santapod.com.
As there is no entry fee, we ask that a voluntary donation is made towards this year's chosen charity Emily's Star. The charity will have their base at the Quarter Mile Club VIP unit and there will be collections points all over the site. Last year, we raised over £3,000 for charity and it would be great to beat this amount.
If you have not yet entered, time is running out. Entry forms must be returned by next Friday, 31st July.
Trophies and medals will be awarded to each entrant and winners (calculated on entries received at time of order).
To find out more about the day and to download an entry form visit the event's web page at www.santapod.co.uk/e_junior_day.php.
Sportsman datalogger deal.
24th July: Fighting inconsistency on the track? Throttle stop RPM creeping? Can't figure out why the car fell off that much? With help from Eurodragster.com sponsor Post & Dros can help you to stop the guessing with their line of Sportsman dataloggers at a special price in August:
These loggers are a great entry level way to get started in data logging and keeping that competitive edge on the track in the Sportsman ranks. They can also be expanded to accommodate additional pressure and or temperatures sensors as well. Internal sensors include Engine RPM, Driveshaft RPM, Battery Voltage, two-axis G-meter, 12 volt event. The lightweight composite housing is 6" x 4.5" x 1", weighs 0.65 pounds and accommodates an SD memory card and 21 channels (six user-defined V-Net channels), 100 samples per second (max sample rate).
On sale at a special price of €699 in August only (normal retail price €800). The part number is 610-KT-SPRTMN and you can place your order or get more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
24th July: UK Super Pro ET racer Billy Gane has been in touch with a reminder that his fourth annual drag racing summer party takes place at 7:00 pm on Saturday 1st August in Writtle near Chelmsford and that all the final plans are coming together. "We received the souvenir glasses earlier in the week", he says, "a new band has been confirmed for this year - Full Mental Racket who will playing various rock covers. There will also be a disco before, between the sets and after until late. Race cars will be on show and we will fire them up at 9:00 pm. There will be a beer pong tournament, rodeo bull, barbecue and late night kebab van". Tickets are £10. For more info contact Billy on 07904 612048 or via Facebook.
We have no less than three birthdays today. First up is a very Happy Birthday to Heaven & Hell team member, Honorary Eurodragster.com Staff Member and Contributing Photographer Grace Roaf. Have a lovely day Grace. By one of those nice coincidences which you get all too seldom it is also the birthday of Grace's mum Mary Roaf. Happy Birthday and hope you have a lovely day too Mary. Finally another big Happy Birthday to our good friend Lotta Andersson. Have a lovely day Lotta.
The Gassers do Dragstalgia.
24th July: Nervous Nick has been in touch with an account of the Gasser Circus' weekend at Dragstalgia:
The Gasser Circus pit filled up really quickly during the course of Friday; in fact Ryan Welch, Nick and Merv Barnett had arrived during Thursday. The reason for their early arrival become only to obvious, as once the track opened on Friday, Nick and Ryan could be found taking it turns to run their '37 Willys Coupe on the strip. Later they were rightfully pleased to tell everyone, they had managed to get fifteen runs in! Some of the other Gassers to take to the track on Friday included Honky Tonkin 2 and Katie Booth in the Mighty Mouse Ford Pop. Husband Ted acts as crew and late in the afternoon he guided Katie into the burnout. With the starter happy he gave the signal to warm the tyres. Katie lit up the slicks, but as she began to roll out with the smoke pouring from the rear, the Ford pop leapt to the side, and with Ted opened mouthed, the car struck the Armco in the centre of the start line. Armco versus car will always generate just one winner and that begins with an A and ends in an O! Friday night in the Mighty Mouse pit, was spent patching up the damage to the flip front and straightening the front axle.
The Gasser Circus Pit was delighted to see the 2014 Champion John Gibson arrive for his first outing of the year. Another returnee, but for completely different reasons, was Laurent Levi, who had for the second year brought his 1964 Gasser Falcon all the way from Nice in France. In case you regularly bunked off geography, Nice is on the South Coast of France, in other words one hell of a journey. Luckily for Laurent, he made the journey with a group of his friends, some of which had also brought their race cars with them. A new Gasser for the Circus, but not a new member, was the Austin Devon Pick-up, with Neil Harris behind the wheel. In total there were fourteen Gasser Circus cars on the property over the weekend, which could have easily been fifteen had John Gumble submitted his application to join before the event. Instead John having spent a fare whack of cash and time building his steel 1938 Willys Pickup, elected to use the Willys Wars gathering as the opportunity to shake the car down. As it turned out shaking was to feature in Johns runs, as by mid track the vibration was a little unnerving. Back in the pits this was soon diagnosed as being caused by the front wheel nuts. With the correct size ones sourced, John will soon be Racing the Dream with the Gasser Circus.
Saturday was all about qualifying, with three opportunities to ensure you made it through to Sunday’s eliminations. There were few cherries left on the tree, but as time in the seat increased these disappeared, but Sean Milsom was still experiencing problems with his Morris Van stalling after the burnout. This was later cured by a phone call to his wife, during which she went to his garage and he explained which of the three available starter motors he required, Mandy even agreeing to meet Sean halfway to hand over the part, now that is a valuable member of your crew!
By the end of play twelve Gassers had qualified with Steve Dixon’s High Roller being number one qualifier, unusually with Tye Strevett behind the wheel, Steve taking the opportunity to see what his car looked like from the start line. Only two Gassers failed to hit or better the required qualifying time, Gas Guzzler and Neil's Devon pick-up. Sunday's forecast was not that good, but racing got underway and the Gasser Circus heeded the call, number one qualifier High Roller had a bye to the next round, but when The Mighty Mouse driven by Katie Booth came up against Honky Tonkin 2 no such luxury was afforded to them, and Katie’s superb reaction time of 0.0115 and 120.45 mph in 10.96 took the win. Next up was Kev Strevett in Goldrush and he was up against the '37 Willys Coupe of Barnett & Welch who appeared to lose their transbrake at the line and their Gasser rolled through the lights, handing the win to Kev who still ran through at 108 mph. Martyn Hallam in his Whiplash Willys was taking on Tim 'Hank' Holmes in his Powerwagon pick-up, with both dialled in at 10.9 we knew this would be close at the top end. And so it was with Tim taking the win by virtue of a better Reaction Time stopping the clocks as he did on a 0.023. Ray Turner guided his 55 Chevy Green Onions to the line and next to him was Laurent Levi, this was another very close race as Green Onions dialled 12.3 and ran 12.5 and Laurent dialled a 10.6 and ran 10.9 with just one tenth of a second between them Ray took the win. Current points leader and Round 1 and 2 winner Sean Milsom was up next against Brain Gibson. Sean was sure he had cured his issues with starting, but despite the efforts of his crew and wife, Brian took the win on a 10.81. The other Gibson brother, John in his '55 Chevy Crowd Pleaser was ready to take on Merv Barnett in his blown 327 powered Ford Pop Psychedelic Relic. Merv dialled 11.2 and ran 11.35/119, John dialled a 11.01 and ran 11.26/121, Merv taking the win. Now we had the Gassers which would contest round two of eliminations.
To the second round and Steve Dixon under the guidance of his daughter and granddaughter performed his burnout in his gold Falcon. Katie in the Mighty Mouse kept the Pop arrow straight in her burnout and both cars edged upto to Pre stage. With both bulbs illuminated, the light sequence commenced and Steve left before the green handing the win to Katie. Next pair up Goldrush versus Powerwagon. Both cars did strong burnouts, but with Tim having 10.9 on his back window and running through with an 11.10, he took the win over Goldrush which ran a breakout 11.9 of a 12.53 dial in. Brian Gibson dialled 11.89 and his opponent Merv Barnett dialled in a 11.25, both Gassers ran down the quarter mile side by side, with a win light going on in Brian’s lane with a 12.18/98. Ray Turner had a bye and everything was setup for the semi-final.
With two rounds of eliminations done it was fast approaching the lunch break and with some Gassers at the end of the fire up road the decision was taken to leave them there so as to be ready to race straight after the break. Unfortunately, with most of the drivers returned to the pits to grab a bit of lunch the rain arrived. The rainfall quickly became a deluge and with no sign of it stopping, the meeting was called by track officials. This left the slight problem of the distance between the drivers and their cars. There really was no option but to get absolutely soaked running down the fire up road to get your car. By the time all the Gassers were back, the pits were flooded in places. Dragstalgia for the Gasser Circus was concluded and, with no winner, the points were calculated by the position the cars had attained during the event. Our thanks to all those who visited us in the pits, and our sponsors the NSRA, Mechanix Limited and Speedking.
Hall of Fame launches magazine.
24th July: The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame has launched a new on-line publication. HOFtalk is designed to improve communications with members and supporters of the BDRHoF and is edited by Eurodragster.com's own Simon.
BDRHoF Commerce and Marketing Director Brian Taylor says "For some time the BDRHoF Management Board has been planning to improve communication with inducted members, sponsors and supporters. We have been very conscious that, apart from the Induction Ceremony and getting together at Dragstalgia and the Gala Awards Dinner, we don’t keep inductees, or our supporters, up to date with what is going on in any structured way. Not only that, it would be good to know what they are up to as well. BDRHoF Members such as Steve Read, Barry Sheavills, Gary Page, Don Garlits and John Hobbs are still very much involved with drag racing but some others are now following different pursuits. We are pleased that Simon Groves has volunteered to edit and compile HOFtalk. He’ll have great fun tracking down these stories."
As a member of the BDRHoF Management Board Simon's duties will focus on Membership Liaison using HOFtalk as the focus of these new activities. Particularly he will be conducting interviews with members and others involved in the development of the sport since its early days in the UK so if you have any stories contact him at email@example.com.
HOFtalk is available as a PDF file by clicking here, or on-screen by clicking here.
Web site updates.
24th July: Our good buddy Steve Moxley has a Dragstalgia bike review in the latest edition of the ACU on-line newsletter. You can check out Moxey's work at www.acu.org.uk.
The 2015 EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship is halfway through the season and part two kicks off with next weekend's Drag Challenge at the popular Gardermoen Raceway. On the entry list for the Norwegian round of the EDRS Pro Nordic MC are not only the regular Championship contenders, but also some interesting new names. Can they disturb the Championship dreams of the leaders, or will other riders surprise us? Samu Kemppainen, Robert Karlsson, Dag Wagenius and Sverre Dahl travel to Gardermoen as the leaders in their respective categories, but will they still be leading after the Gardermoen eliminations? You can read more in Remco Scheelings' latest report on the EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship web site at www.edrspro.com.
Mopar EuroNats racer update.
23rd July: Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us details of the arrangements for this weekend's Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway. UK Top Sportsman racers please note that details of scrutineering and run times will be advised by the UK Top Sportsman organisers.
Friday 24th July
08:00 Gates open
10:00 Signing On office opens (DVLC for RWYB)
12:00 Track opens for RWYB
19:00 Track closes
00:00 Gates close
Saturday 25th July
08:00 Gates open for the rest of the weekend
08:00 Scrutineering commences for MSA Pro Modified
10:00 Signing On office opens (DVLC for RWYB)
10:00 Track opens for RWYB
20:00 Track closes
Sunday 26th July
08:00 Scrutineering commences for MSA Pro Modified
10:00 Signing On office opens (DVLC for RWYB)
10:00 Track opens for RWYB
17:00 Track closes
The final official entry lists are available for Pro Modified and UK Top Sportsman and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Please remember the curfew: no race vehicle motors are to be started before 09:00 or after 20:00 on any day. Breach of curfew can result (has resulted) in exclusion from the meeting.
SPRC would appreciate it if UK racers have their bank sort code and account number with them so that winnings can be paid directly into their accounts by Bacs the day after the event. Cheques will still be available to those who would prefer them, however SPRC would prefer to use Bacs as bank charges are lower and racers will receive their money sooner.
23rd July: We would like to say a big Happy Birthday with hugs to Christine Buckland. Have a lovely day Christine. Your News Editor considering himself a gentleman will not reveal Christine's age but suffice to say that she will never have to pay for a bus to Santa Pod again. Connor Holt asked us to say a big Happy Birthday to his dad Andrew Holt. Our pleasure, have a great day Andrew.
Racers' DFDS ferry discount.
22nd July: Photo-journalist Andy Willsheer has been in touch to remind racers going to Hockenheim that discounted ferry travel is available from DFDS for the Dover-Dunkerque route.
To get your discounted trip download and print Form 1 and Form 2, fill out and return to Terri Herbert at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Like son, like father.
22nd July: Recently briefly featured on Idris Elba's No Limits, Paul Marston's Drag Racing School based at Santa Pod Raceway is now working with Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman title sponsor Steve Ashdown and his son, rising Junior Dragster star Tyler Ashdown. Paul Marston writes:
Tyler will be moving up to Super Comp next year and will be developing his skills through the Paul Marston Drag Racing School’s two-day dragster course in early 2016. We take two days to train and develop the skills which Junior Dragster drivers have already learned and apply them to a dragster which is more brutal on the driver physically, with a much quicker race of acceleration. A driver has to work on developing their mental processing skills, as well as physical strengthening and conditioning, to keep up with everything and to stay in control . The most important part of this is to stay safe, to have good spatial awareness and to be in control.
But before that its dad's turn! Steve Ashdown wants to go through the same two-day dragster course so in a couple of weeks' time will be joining us in the Paul Marston Racing Miller four-link dragster. Steve will work up to his licence and will then make his début in the dragster in Super Pro ET at the FIA European Finals. In 2016 Steve will unveil his very own blown alcohol dragster which will compete in Super Pro ET with none other than Charlie Draper tuning. Steve will have another steep learning curve to climb and is fully aware of the fact that this will take time. Everyone at Paul Marston Racing is looking forward to working with Steve and to having him compete with us in Super Pro ET at the FIA European Finals, particularly Mick Howling.
Web site updates.
22nd July: The official web site of the UK's Chaos Fuel Altered has been updated with a report from Dragstalgia. You can check it out at www.chaos-fuel-altered.com.
The Northern Swing.
21st July: Adam Flamholc and team have had the kind of road trip which most of the rest of us can only envy. Adam writes:
The first event was at Sundsvall Raceway on first weekend in July. We qualified as number one with a new track ET record, and won the event after four really good runs! Isabell Flamholc qualified second in a twenty six car field, in her first race ever in a Junior Dragster. Lucas Karlsson qualified number three and took one round win.
The whole team stayed up in the north of Sweden after the first event, and we actually went even further up to the Midnight Sun Nationals in Piteå on the following weekend. We qualified number one with new track ET and speed records with the Viper, made it to the finals where we lost to Jonas Malmqvist and his team JML Racing, big congrats to them. Lucas Karlsson won two rounds and Mattias Flamholc three in Junior Dragster. Mats Lusth qualified number four in Pro Street and made in to the semis.
This last weekend we where back in the south in Malmö. We qualified number one with the Viper and won the event. In the final we ran against Rimbert Vahlstrom who was driving Tommy Jonsson's Pro Extreme car. This was the fastest Pro Extreme side-by-side run ever in competition in Europe! We ran 3.79 to Rimbert's 3.81. Mats Lusth qualified number one in Pro Street, and made it to the finals where he lost to Caroline Strandh. Mattias Flamholc qualified number one in Junior Dragster, made it all the way to the final where he faced his team-mate Lucas Karlsson! I'm extremely happy and proud of them both! Lucas was a bit hot and turned on a red light, so Mattias won the event.
Big thanks to all our supporters, the track crews at all of the tracks and of course to our great sponsors Stallningsbyggarna i Skåne AB, Amalie Oil, Ekdahl Miljö AB, Linnarhults Terminalen, Malmö Motorrenovering MMR, Mc Donalds Malmö / Lund, Performance Plus, 5 Days Plantation Shutters and Blinds and Hydraul Akuten.
21st July: Many thanks to Andy Marrs of TSI Timers Europe for forwarding us the official timing data from Bug Jam. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to our good buddy, His Worshipful Flatulence The Very Reverend Sir Neville Mottershead ODE. Have a great day Nev.
Carl Burton has been in touch with some examples of recent tattooing work by his Peterborough-based company English Rose Tattooing and Piercing. "Some are drivers and some are fans", says Carl, "look out for them in the pits. And thanks to Al O'Connor who still runs my decals on his Gasser."
Mopar EuroNats Perfect Awards.
16th July: This weekend's Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway is the latest event in this season's Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme. £50 is on offer for perfect performance and we are very pleased to announce that Perfect Light Award sponsors Cath and Tig Napier have asked us to include Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 after it was won by Sportsman ET racer John Przybyl at Bug Jam. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer this weekend to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available during qualifying and eliminations in MSA Pro Modified and both days of Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £75 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals. The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Bad Habit Racing (Cath and Tig Napier, Pro ET).
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office or from the Eurodragster.com office in Race Control (entry via Spectator Bank side stairs only).
In the absence of any Championship Bracket or Index classes this weekend there is no Eurodragster.com / Gold RV Perfect ET Award but it will of course return for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway.
European Top Gas Round 4.
21st July: Herman Jolink writes that the fourth round of this year's European Top Gas Series took place at Drachten Airfield in The Netherlands on 10th-12th July:
The track was well-prepared by the Quartermile team. We had three qualifiers on Friday and four on Saturday, and the plan was to run our first two rounds of eliminations on Saturday evening because there was a possibility of rain on Sunday. But a car oiled the track so there were no eliminations on Saturday.
Top Gas quallfying after seven sessions:
Round 1 eliminations: Schack 7.682/267.94 beat van Nimmen (first alternate) who engine stopped shortly after the start; van Schie 8.760-217 bye, Andersen's starter motor broke; Albers 8.385/257 beat Ivana van dan Berg 10.637; Jolink 8.566/239 beat Menzi 9.743/161 problems to getting the bike to go straight.
Semi finals: Schack new Personal Best 7.580 beat van Schie whose engine stoppped ten metres from the start. Jolink 8.560/243 bye, Albers has problems with the clutch.
No final due to rain.
Euro Serie Super Twin Top Gas Championship after four rounds:
7th-9th August: NitrOlympX, Hockenheim, Germany
28th-30th August: Mosten Race Days eighth-mile sprint, Orsted, Denmark
11th-13th September: Winter Nationals, Malmö, Sweden
Hunting the Six and the Four.
21st July: Aidan Heatley Smith has been in touch with an account of the Ant Hill Mob's weekend at the Nitro Nats at Toronto Motorsports Park:
After an unsuccessful weekend at the first event of the year with barrel gremlins we replaced our clutch set-up, fixed our blower, fixed the brakes and put a new ignition system on the Funny Car.
Saturday Q1: We where ready to see if the new changes helped. A strong hundred-foot burnout was the first good sign! Then we weere shut off as the brake master cylinder caps had fallen off and spilt brake fluid on the track. An easy fix so we where ready for Q2, again a strong burnout for the crowd. Backed up and up to the line, I was ready. RPMs up, hard launch and then she quit. I coasted to a twenty one-second pass, enough to qualify, and found at the top end that the bottom pulley has sheared the bolts! Back in the pits we had to pull the off the crank hub off and drill out the six snapped bolts then get it back together so that Jordan Hardie and Josh Beechy could run the valves. With new stronger bolts supplied by Barry Paton we were back together and ready for the night session, Q3. Another strong burnout, great launch, but only made it to just before the eighth before it started to get loose due to the slick track conditions at night, oh well! We qualified and no damage.
We partied and celebrated throughout the night, especially since my dad Smax had driven the Leverich Family's Top Fueller to a best of 5.05 but had unfortunately damaged the motor 4.7 seconds into the run. That first four is so close! They thrashed through the night to get the spare motor together and running for Sunday.
Sunday morning, up bright and early and got the car ready for Round 1 against Ron Banks. As the car was towed around the corner to the start line, the battery for the tach died! So now I was just shifting by feel. Ron had run 6.08 in qualifying, and we hadn't done anything special , so nerves were high. He staged, I staged, lights came down, and I was gone. Short shifts without the tach, but I wasn't lifting for anything! The car went silent at a thousand feet and I still didn't see Ron, I didn't see a light so wasn't sure who had won. At the top end Ron came up to me and asked me if I redlit and said that he was chasing me the whole way down. With no timing ticket we didn't know who had won, until the crew came flying up arms in the air and cheering, we had won! All the hard work paid off, and the timing ticket revealed a new Personal Best of 7.10 shutting off early! That six is coming soon.
Back in the pits we found it sheared the bottom pulley again and we only had a short turn around, so all hands on deck! We were against Paul Noakes in the second round, and as we were putting the final touches on the car but still more than twenty minutes away from finishing , the round two cars headed to the lanes. Talk about pressure! I even got strapped into the car on the stands in the pit whilst the guys did the final touches. Down came the car, pushed back, and into the staging lanes. We made it. Now we had time to breathe with a delay, we went over everything and it was all good and ready! Fire up! Perfect side by side burnouts, I was ready, this was it! RPMs up, hard launch, then instantly sideways, I remember pointing straight for the bar - maybe the car was thirsty - but I quickly got off the throttle and with a handful of steering to the left got it straightened out. I saw Paul slow down having issues, so my first thought was to get back on it and chase him down, but my split second decision was "There's oil under my tires, better not", so shut it off and pulled over. If you're not fast, you gotta be spectacular! All in all it was a successful weekend, two Personal Bests and an ever-growing fan base, can't wait for the next one!
Web site updates.
21st July: Our good buddy Markus Münch has been in touch to let us know about an extended video interview with Werner Habermann Racing. The German-language interview comes in three parts and features Werner Habermann on the history of the team and Timo and Dennis Habermann on the season so far and the difference between Top Methanol and Top Fuel.
20th July: We were very sorry to hear of the death of US racer Bob Keith (left, with fan and late Eurodragster.com staff member Ed O'Connell) who was involved with UK drag racing in its very earliest days. British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Chair Stu Bradbury writes:
Most people probably don't think much about the origins of drag racing in the UK. But for me the early days are a vivid, exciting memory, starting when the first Americans to introduce the sport to England invaded our shores in 1963 and 1964. From then on drag racing has been my life. Most of that was down to people such as Bob Keith who was part of the 1964 American team and Captained the 1965 team. I have met him and his lovely wife Lee many times since then.
It started for Bob back in 1963 when he saw an article in Hot Rod Magazine about a new blown Chrysler dragster developed by Sydney Allard in England. Bob was immediately interested and sent a letter to Sydney (no E-Mails in those days) who was trying to make contact with American racers keen on providing exhibition runs as a way of introducing drag racing to England. The rest is history with his dragster Dos Palmos appearing in 1964 and 1965 and having a second life in the hands of Bill Weichelt under the name Asmodeus during the 1970s. The original chassis had recently been found in the USA and Bob had started a restoration – something he had dreamed about for many years.
I think a quote from Bob's wife Lee says all you would want to say about Bob Keith: "He was an amazing individual, one of the kindest and nicest people ever to inhabit this planet and he was loved and respected by all who knew him." For my part my life has been all the better having met him, and I’m proud to have been his friend.
Our deepest sympathies to Bob's family and friends.
UK weekend results.
20th July: Congratulations to the winners at the weekend's Bug Jam at Santa Pod Raceway:
European Nitro Funny Car Series: Gordon Smith 5.3837/178.53 def. Kevin Kent 5.6883/132.20
Sportsman ET: Craig Wright (16.37) 16.5677/78.55 def. Andy Dibley (16.20) 16.5012/83.79
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator: Stu Williams 9.0340/151.61 def. Jon Webster staged
VW Pro: Carl Goldsmith (12.63) 12.2309/116.09 def. Sam Chisholm-Brown (12.74) 18.5494/65.69 DQ red
VW Sportsman: Ross Chisholm-Brown (14.70) 15.3935/93.51 def. Paul Herbert (13.40) 14.1224/88.35 DQ red
Outlaw Anglia: Cliff Griffin 7.9023/177.81 def. Colin Millar 8.1972/163.07
Congratulations also to Sportsman ET racer John Przybyl who won the £100 Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award with a 0.000 Reaction Time during qualifying. The Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 for this weekend's MSA British Pro Modified Championship round at the Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway whilst the Eurodragster.com / Gold RV Perfect ET Award has been increased to £75 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway after going unclaimed this weekend.
Congratulations also to the winners of the Bike rounds held at Shakespeare County Raceway this weekend. Thanks to Jerry Cookson for passing on details:
8.50 Bike: Paul Furlong 8.572/158.57 def. Eddy Smiley 8.656/144.76
9.50 Bike: Fred Furlong 9.574/123.80 def. Richard Sawatzki 9.696/143.76
NAST Supertwin Gas: Chris Mott 9.634/136.98 def. Jo Brookes 10.145/134.58
NAST Supertwin ET: Cary Wadey (10.60) 10.883/113.71 def. Peter Harrison (10.85) 10.962/120.59
Kawasaki Triples Challenge: Peter McGuiness (13.40) 13.479/99.74 def. Jeff Watts (13.20) 13.001/104.64 DQ b/o
You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Bug Jam reports, results and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
19th July: We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to UK Outlaw Anglia racer Simon Barlow. Have a great day Simon and we wish you were here at Santa Pod.
It is proving difficult to cover an event live and sort out webcast problems whilst simultaneously clearing a news backlog but as you can see below we are doing our best. We have a few pieces left to code up which we shall do as soon as we are able.
19th July: UK Supercharged Outlaw racer Dave McKenzie and Team Thing had a roller coaster of a weekend at Dragstalgia. Dave writes:
It was my sixtieth birthday weekend so it started well, but from that point it was downhill. The first run on Saturday was eventful! The car got up on the tyres in the burnout and all looked well. I then chirped the car to clear the engine, one more chirp to the start line was needed and that's were things started to go wrong: the throttle stuck open and the car shot down the track narrowly missing Crew Chief Mark Windridge. I killed the motor and was towed back to the pits. After a check of the car it was found that a fire extinguisher line had come loose and been sucked into the injector butterflies holding them open.
The car was set up and came out for round two, another good burnout and couple of chirps to the line, all good at this point. Pre-stage light on, stage light on, waiting for Paul Watts to stage. Transbrake on, revs up, green light, and away. The car felt awesome. Shifted into second and I heard the burst panel let go then a lot of mechanical noise coming from the engine, not good.
Back in the pits the heads were removed and number one piston was loose in the bore. We thought we had thrown a rod and that signalled the end of our weekend, and probably our season. My granddaughter Lauren decided to put a cardboard box out in our pit to collect money for repairs. The response from the Supercharged Outlaws was overwhelming. We raised £350 towards our rebuild, and then it got even better as Johnny Hall, our good buddy from early years in the Supercharged Outlaws, rang Mark and offered us a set of pistons, a set of con rods and all the valvetrain from his nitro slingshot. All top quality parts and only ever did six runs.
When we arrived home we were informed that we were winners of Best Appearing Team. Thank you Santa Pod, we were surprised by this as there were a lot of smart teams there.
Back at Team Thing headquarters we waited until Wednesday before stripping the engine. On inspection it looked like a piston or gudgeon pin failure as the con rod was in one piece. The engine block was cracked. With all the help we were receiving a phone call was made to Dave at Performance Unlimited in York and a brand new race block was ordered. We are now working hard to get the car back on the track at the Hot Rod Drags
A big thank you to first of all the Supercharged Outlaws for their generosity, we were overwhelmed. A big big thank you also to Johnny Hall of Stamford Speed Shop for his donation of parts. Finally but not least our sponsors NDK Non-Destructive Testing, BJB Fork Lift trucks, Allenby Stevenson Carpet and Furniture Centre, Total Signs, and Lincs Doors.
We will be back better than before.
Superstock hits Dragstalgia.
19th July: Pete Walton writes that Superstock's fourth year, at last weekend's Dragstalgia, featured the biggest field ever:
With twenty four racers on the day it was always going to be hard to win .We had some real useful racers from the fantastic American Superstock series at York, a few from Shakespeare County raceway's Gambler Series and of course some big hitters from Pro ET. Chuck in a few new faces plus from France Stephane Caruso and you knew it would be tough going.
After three rounds of qualifying Richard Grainger with his stunning Roadrunner was on the top of the pile with Adam Novak, another racer from the York SS series, in second. In eliminations a few fall foul of the dreaded red light, my old mate Jim Chandler being one of them after spending all weekend running 10.6s and looking a strong contender.With Richard Grainger getting a bye into the final all eyes were on the other semi which featured Dave Billadeau's '66 Coronet against Mick Deakin's Challenger. Their dial ins would have made this a heads-up race and I must admit everyone in the class was headed for the start line when the rain came and sadly that was that.
Richard Grainger took the spoils by virtue of the fact ,that he was the highest qualifier left in the field when the rain came.
I would like to thank Ian Marshall for letting me re-run two cars, Mike Lacey for his help sorting us all into some sort of order, Andy Robinson Race Cars for their continuing support, and James Forster and all the Santa Pod crew for a great event.
We are not done yet as we have a second meeting at the Hot Rod Drags at Shakespeare County Raceway in September. If you fancy having a go please contact me on 07970 206827 or E-Mail email@example.com.
The Beach boy.
18th July: Dragstalgia marked the début of the Beach Bomb slingshot from Bloodlines Racing. Driver Ian Turburville writes:
Laura was committed to a local modified car show so I was on my own until I press-ganged Kenny and Asa Gomez into crewing. Kenny is one of our race partners and runs Superpower Unlimited up near Glasgow. He is a blower expert, supplying and servicing a lot of Europes superchargers.
The plan was to test out the car and to make sure that everything worked as it should and then to fine tune the new fuel system. Everything went exceedingly well and all the new car niggles were sorted by Sunday ready for a full pass but then the rains came. The passes we made showed that the car had a lot of power and provided some interesting moments like sideways burn-outs, big wheelies and squirrely runs.
Commiserations to Doug Bond and Jon Webster who both had big problems with their new FEDs, and congrats to all the other cars and bikes who put on a fantastic show! Best car of the weekend for me was Bill Sheratt's newly imported Jim Davis cackle car (damn, beat me to it) and best bike was Jan Honee's return on the nitro single.
The Beach Bomb slingshot is all serviced and buttoned up ready to sell, so if you want a beautiful race car with seven-second potential then please message me on behalf of Bloodlines Racing. Big thanks for the weekend go to USAutomotive who have joined the team and to Kleen Freaks for their continued support along with Central College Nottingham. Lastly, well done Tony Betts and team for a great début and for the food. That '34 was a sight to see blasting towards us at the finish line!
A big pat on the back for James Forster, roll on Dragstalgia 2016!
A day of fun for Emily.
19th July: Milton Keynes-based charity Emily’s Star is this year’s chosen beneficiary when the third annual Junior Drag Racing Fun Day takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on Wednesday 26th August.
The Junior Drag Racing Fun Day provides Juniors with a starring role in their own right and an opportunity to perform in front of their youthful peers and is a full-scale family attraction for the summer holiday. Admission for everyone, young and old, is free.
Voluntary donations to Emily’s Star will be welcomed during the day. The charity supports UK families whose children suffer life-limiting or life-threatening conditions and are attended by Children With Complex Needs nursing teams, with particular reference to Trisomy 18, or Edward’s Syndrome, a genetic condition which reduces babies’ lives to a matter of days, or even hours. The charity also provides equipment for neonatal units caring for underweight or premature babies.
Free summer-holiday family entertainment is the Fun Day prescription, with the accent firmly on youth. Drag strip action is open to Junior Drag Racers from across Europe – on two wheels as well as four – with informal competitions for ages ranging from eight to seventeen. Go Motorsport, the Motor Sports Association’s entry-level initiative, will offer Auto-Solo passenger rides in its own, separate zone in the paddock. Away from the track, there’s a pot-pourri of entertainment designed to appeal to the young-at-heart of all ages: top freestyle motorcycle stunt rider Lee Bowers; Santa Pod’s resident Monster Truck Podzilla; static displays of racing cars, featuring hot rods and nostalgia cars; and a chance to take a passenger ride in the giant Red Dragon Monster Truck.
Fun Day also embraces other forms of junior motorsport. Static displays are promised by a range of racing disciplines focused on the younger generation. Santa Pod’s own, very grown-up FireForce Jet Funny Car will be on show. Other family activities on the programme include dodgems, trampolines, face-painting, bouncy castle, crazy golf, craft corner and movies playing on a big screen.
The Junior Drag Racing Fun Day takes place between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm. For more information and to book free admission tickets on-line, please visit www.santapod.co.uk.
For more information on Emily’s Star, visit www.emilysstar.co.uk.
Dragstalgia bike review.
17th July: Photo-journalist Keith Lee has been in touch with a look back at the weekend's bike action at Dragstalgia:
This year’s event proved to be even better than I had hoped, despite the early Sunday finish due to rain. All of the early promises came to fruition, as everyone pulled out the stops to get there and put on the best bike show yet.
With John Hobbs celebrating the fortieth anniversary of racing The Hobbit, it was only fitting that he played a starring role in proceedings. Jonny Munn had flown in from Australia to have a ride on the blown double Weslake after a thirty-year lay-off, and blew away the butterflies with a checkout pass. That led to one of the match-ups of the event - John on his little 500cc Olympus against 1700cc in a throwback to how racing used to be. A cracking holeshot on the little bike looked like it might be decisive, but Munjo wound the throttle wide, and screamed past before the traps to record an excellent 9.24/142. He may have won, but John had a wide smile after enjoying the unique sight of his own machine passing him.
One interesting little fact - Olympus clocked 10.43/127 on an earlier run - and that was quicker than John ever ran in that front blower format some forty five years ago!
A real highlight was seeing Dutch rider Jan Honee on his amazing little 500cc Jawa, riding it for the first time in nineteen years. Not surprisingly he had some problems, but Jan was supported by Marius van der Zijden who worked non-stop all weekend to ensure the bike got in a couple of runs. No full pass, but the noise of that little engine on a 9.32/126 run was something else - and he was doing 125 mph at the eighth-mile mark!
The only real casualty on track was the Orient Express, ridden by Pip Higham, which unfortunately suffered a twisted crank. Even the mighty fifty-plus year old Methamon sidecar outfit made it down track a number of times in fine style, at the expense of only one set of totally fried clutch plates.
Pitside there were lots of interesting bikes to enjoy. Highlights included the re-emergence of the unique Dragwaye after a lot of work by Terry Homan, who exceeded his own expectations by managing to fire up the blown VW powerplant.
The two stars had to be the two Norton powered machines from either side of the Atlantic. Hogslayer and Pegasus had pride of place, thanks to the National Motorcycle Museum who kindly released them to appear. One of the many international webcast viewers was the tech guru behind Hogslayer, John Gregory, who thoroughly enjoyed watching the action.
The NSA Shootout trophy was awarded to John Hobbs by virtue of his earlier low ET of 8.83, having been due to race in the final against the impressive 750 Hagon Weslake Triumph of Justin Newell.
A few quick Thank Yous are in order. The Baskerville trio for helping keep everyone in order, and making a set of self-powered rollers to speed up starting, Chris Illman for his efforts with our star exhibits, and to James Forster for making this such a great event to be involved with. Annie also sends her thanks to Tog and team for the great webcast coverage, as she was not able to attend (Thanks Annie, you're welcome - Ed).
Already I have a promise for another icon of the early years to be ready for next year. And this time I think he really means it! Roll on 2016.
17th July: Gary Hall writes that the Damn Yankees Summer Slam takes place at North Weald Airfield this Sunday (19th). "With 700 to 800 American cars, Hot Rods, Custom Cars, Classics and Harleys on show this year is our 29th", he says. "As usual we have John Price of Santa Pod fame handling the commentary. As well as the Show and Shine we have the race car display and the Draper brothers will be firing up their Altered. Any racers wishing to bring their cars will be most welcome to join in the display. North Weald Airfield is on the A414 just off Junction 7 of the M11". For further details contact Gary on 07740 827288 or E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
We've had a lot to juggle at Eurodragster.com HQ this week with medical stuff to crowbar into the schedule (If only its author knew the irony of the below headline - Ed) alongside the usual daily calls on one's time such as paying the mortage, so we have a news backlog which we shall clear on tomorrow's update. Tune back then for a report of the latest European Top Gas round, the latest couple of pupils at the Paul Marston Drag Racing School, Dragstalgia Superstock and Team Thing reviews, a beach party, an update on Santa Pod Raceway's Junior Fun Day and more, and please keep the news coming to email@example.com.
There will be blood!
17th July: Paul Marston writes that Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman is again unleashed at next week's Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway and that this could be a race the likes of which we have never seen before:
There are simply so many extremely quick doorslammers entered that it really is impossible to tell who is going to win. A lot of the teams will have never faced one another before, and with entries coming from as far as Switzerland it really is anybody's race in both the Fast Bracket and the the Heads Up races.
Remember: Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman is two races over the Mopar EuroNationals weekend, which itself is the biggest and best muscle car event outside of the States. First race Friday, the Fast Bracket race, one time trial then straight into eliminations, random pairings. There is a second chance buy-back available for first round losers then from Round 2 if you lose you're out. The Fast Bracket is run to completion Friday. Saturday is a chill day until Saturday night when we have qualifying shootout for the Heads Up race. There are only sixteen spots available and it's a one shot deal so the teams and their drivers have to make it count. There is a £350 cash bonus for the number one qualifier courtesy of a Blue Chip Investor and for the winner of the Heads Up race there is a cool £1500 cash.
It's probably the richest ever Sportsman race in the history of UK drag racing - it is certainly the richest UK Top Sportsman payout. The lion's share, £1000, comes from John Tebenham who sees a real future in this kind of racing and is prepared to back it financially, for which we are very grateful. The runner up of the Heads Up will receive £500 cash. The winner and runner-up of the Fast Bracket will receive the usual and not insubstantial payout from the UK Top Sportsman purse.
I think it's fair to say that the cream of British and European teams and drivers have competed in UK Top Sportsman. It's the roughest, toughest, hardest fought, no holds barred, Run What Ya Brung and hope you brung enough, most talked about, without doubt richest payout, Heads Up and Fast Bracket race of the year! And it's televised! And remember there has never been a repeat winner.
Entry is still open and with thirty one and counting there is a big field of competitors, but it's not too late to enter and be part of history. E-Mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org@fsmail.net, call 07831 650230, or contact us on Facebook at uktopsportsman for an entry form.
Once again I must express our sincere thanks to the Mopar EuroNationals organisers for inviting and hosting us again in 2015, it's a great event and we are privileged and honoured to be part of it. Either participate or come and watch the very best and fastest Sportsman doorslammers fight it out. There will be blood!
Event entry update.
16th July: Shakespeare County Raceway's Jerry Cookson has been in touch to remind all 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike and National Association of Supertwins racers contesting this weekend's UK National Championships and NAST round that tickets and event details will be available for collection on the gate upon arrival. A provisional pit plan and entry list can be viewed on the Shakespeare County Raceway and APIRA Facebook pages.
Many thanks to organiser Paul Marston for passing on the official entry list for Comanche Race Cars / JS Secure Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman which will be contested at next week's Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway. You can check out the entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page; the organisers ask that any racer who thinks that they should be on the list but who do not appear get in touch with them.
16th July: Further to yesterday's news, Kawasaki Triples Euro Meet organisers have pulled in further sponsorship from CC Performance Engineering Ltd. Owned by Dave Brader and based in Norfolk, CC Performance can provide precision machining and design specialising in Drag Bike, Streetfighter, bespoke performance specials and custom motorcycles. They will be sponsoring two trophies for Best Standard Triple and Best Modified Triple which will be presented on Sunday. To find out more about what Dave and CC Performance can offer visit their Facebook page.
Bryan Whitfield writes to thank the Santa Pod Raceway and the Eurodragster.com teams for their part in a great weekend at Dragstalgia. "We had a great weekend as everyone else did, apart from the Websters and the poor guy with the Nova", says Bryan. "Some great cars and outstanding performances, Tim Garlick’s burnouts took the place back twenty years! We ran both our cars, but Henry Hirise running 10.48 on Sunday morning was fantastic for us. We had loads of compliments - Henry it seems has a lot of fans, and a lot to answer for, the amount of people who tell us "This car is the reason I’m into all this scene" is quite amazing, then the wife usually tells us "This car is the reason we don’t have holidays, never had a new kitchen!". BigJob, the old truck which does a sterling job pulling our junk around, also received a lot of attention and a nice compliment from Simon in his pit notes so thanks for that. We're looking forward to next year's Dragstalgia already!"
Bug Jam Perfect Awards.
16th July: This weekend's Bug Jam at Santa Pod Raceway is the latest event in this season's Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme. £150 is on offer for perfect performance.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been increased to £100 after it went unclaimed at Dragstalgia. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer this weekend to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available to racers in all classes during qualifying and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £125 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals. The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Bad Habit Racing (Cath and Tig Napier, Pro ET).
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office or from the Eurodragster.com office in Race Control (entry via Spectator Bank side stairs only).
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Gold RV Perfect ET Award has been reset to £50 after it was won by Sportsman ET racer Craig Wright at the SPRC Summernationals. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer this weekend to run an ET to the thousandth of a second on dial-in or index. The Perfect ET Award is available this weekend during qualifying or eliminations in VW Pro, VW Sportsman and Sportsman ET, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Run of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £75 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals. The Perfect ET Award is presented in association with RV sales and service specialists Gold RV. For more details about the services which Gold RV can provide see Derek Flynn or visit www.goldrv.co.uk.
To be eligible to collect the Perfect ET Award, racers are required to carry decals, one on each side of the vehicle. If you pull this weekend's first Perfect ET but are not carrying decals then there will be no discussion; we will not pay out and the next person to pull a Perfect ET will get the money assuming that they are carrying decals. Decals will be available in the Signing On office from Friday morning.
Allard Award entry still open.
16th July: Entry is still open for the Sydney Allard Media Awards which will be presented at the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala Awards Dinner on 21st November. Brian Taylor writes:
The competition is open to amateurs and professionals. There is one trophy for photo-journalism and one for written journalism. The judge for the Written Journalism award is Guy Loveridge, Chairman of the Guild of Motoring Writers. Judges for the Photo Journalism award are Art Editor of Octane Magazine Mark Sommer and Pink Floyd drummer and classic car collector / racer Nick Mason who is also President of the Guild of Motoring Writers and a Trustee of the National Motor Museum, Beaulieu.
In 2014 a big proportion of entries covered Nostalgia events but don't forget that the qualifiying period started on 1st August 2014 so photos from the last year's European Finals and this year's Main Event are eligible as are those from other events. Entries have to be in by the end of July 2015 to enable ample time for collating, judging and engraving of the crystal trophies (sponsored by MQQNEYES).
You can submit more than one entry so if you have potential winning photos or written pieces already completed send them in now because it helps with preparing them for the independent judges. Full details and entry forms on at www.britishdragracinghof.co.uk/allard-award-entries.
Web site updates.
16th July: Thanks to DJ at Santa Pod Raceway for bringing us up to date with all of the new Web TV programmes available on Santa Pod's YouTube channel, namely SPRC Summernationals highlights, MSA Pro Modified Round 3, Competition Clutch FWD Drag Series Round 3 and Millers Oils Japanese Drag Series Round 3.
Richard Smith has updates his Zenfolio site with some excellent pictures from Dragstalgia and York Raceway's Sportsman Nationals and Street Racer Championship. You can take a look at rdsmith.zenfolio.com.
UK Juniors victorious at Drachten.
15th July: Lizz McCarthy writes to congratulate the UK Junior Drag Bike racers and their teams who went to the Netherlands this weekend, two of whom came home from Drachten with trophies:
Blade Dummer, who has had some awesome racing over here, ran another PB over the weekend, and went on to win the event while Jake Charman, who has not raced this season due to concentrating on his GCSEs and a recent bike rebuild, was runner-up! Louis Davies and Charlotte Hales, who also ran PBs were knocked out with a red light and a breakout but still had a fabulous time.
We would like to thank ESLA and Quartermile Dragracing for making the Teams feel so welcome, Rene van den Berg for the hospitality, Clair Davies for reporting by the power of WhatsApp, after every run so I could update the Facebook page as they went, Jan de Vries and Jan van Schie, the Dutch Junior racers who have made new friends now, too ! The biggest thanks have to go to Kevin Charman, Allan and Clair Davies, Mark Hales and Ollie Dummer for taking time out of hectic schedules to drive them to Drachten, enduring very long ferry delays to give their children the opportunity to race in Europe.
You can catch up on the Junior Drag Bike Club at www.juniordragbike.com which diverts to our Facebook page. If you are, or if you have, a child aged between eight and seventeen who would be interested in racing with us then please come and see us at the track, or message via the Facebook page. We will answer any questions, and help where we can.
A buzzing weekend.
15th July: Dave Draper has been in touch to tell us how much Draper Brothers Racing enjoyed their weekend at Dragstalgia, where they ran their blown-alcohol altered:
Dragstalgia is a really enjoyable event with such a diverse mix of nostalgic cars, bikes and relaxed friendly atmosphere.
You could not believe the relief in our pit when, on the first run on Friday, we knew that the ignition problem which had plagued us in previous meetings had been rectified. A stonking burnout and a planned half pass had us all buzzing. The next few runs highlighted a few different issues which will be rectified – namely the throttle pedal position, as Jim could not get full throttle. Overall the crew left the event happy.
A big shout out to our hard-working crew and especially to Lyn and Debbie for tirelessly keeping the crew fed and watered.
Also pitted with us were some old friends and it was great to see Andy Lambert and team back at the track. Andy last raced in 1987 with his pair of z900 bikes. Charlie would like to say thanks to Andy and crew for letting him ride one of his bikes, even though with his dodgy ankle he couldn't get second gear without lifting his leg up to shift due to the long throw between first and second (poor bike). Charlie had a big smile firmly planted on his face all weekend. And yes we did tape a block to the top of his boot to try to help matters but alas it didn't! Charlie was doubly privileged as Andy had worked hard to get both bikes there and to uphold a promise to one of his team, John Perrin, who sadly passed away last week. Great bunch of guys and girls... cheers all.
Ahonen's welcomed return.
15th July: Crew Chief Simo Patoharju has been in touch with his account of Finnish Top Fuel Dragster racer Janne Ahonen's return to the track after three years:
Janne called me on 9th April and asked if it would be possible to get the Top Fuel Dragster back on track this season. I told him to wait for a few days, and I immediately started to make some phone calls and calculations. After some discussions with the former crew and some work with a few Excel spreadsheets we made the decision to give it a go. We knew that time would be limited to prepare the car so we set up our goals accordingly: 1. Get to the track, 2. Run the car without any problems, and 3. Run the car quickly and win rounds.
Preparations went reasonably well, altough some of the parts shipments were received just before leaving for Alastaro. The dragster had been sitting for three years, so there were lots of things to go through to be sure everything would be OK. All of the SFI updates alone were quite a job. We had decided to go to Alastaro one week early to test at the Drag Race Week event. This was a very good decision as it got the car, the crew and the driver shook down. We worked all the bugs out of the car between Thursday and Saturday, and on Sunday made two launches. On the latter pass, a 330-foot squirt, we recorded a reasonably good sixty foot time which was very encouraging.
Then we were off to Helsinki for the Alastaro PR event which FHRA had arranged at Malmi Airport on Tuesday. After a quick warm-up and several driver interviews we were off to Alastaro again, this time for real. We knew we had quite a challenge waiting for us: no US tuner ths time, a new crew and a track surface we never had raced on. Overall we felt reasonably confident because we knew our test had gone so well, and the car had worked flawlessly. Our new crew included some Top Fuel veterans and one rookie, but lacked three who were variously involved with other teams and track prep.
In Q1 we managed to run 4.44 which was good for #2 spot at that time. We skipped the second round on Friday since we were performing a planned engine change, and we didn't know how we could improve our time in the heat of the day. In Q3 on Saturday we ran 4.37 which kept us in fourth position. In Q4 we made a planned early shut-off run to test a few things.
Come race day we were lined up against Micke Kågered in E1. Both cars sponsored by Bahco, so we were joking that this race was for the Bahco Nordic sponsorship deal. Janne made a reasonably good pass (our quickest of the weekend) although one cylinder dropped at half track and was pushing the car sideways, eventually forcing Janne to shut off a bit early. We lost with a 4.31 to Micke's 4.32 so it was a close race, but a good one.
There was of course a feeling of disappointment after the defeat, especially being such a close one. Then again, we looked back at the weekend and realised that we had made four perfect runs: not a drop of oil on the track, no crew mistakes, hardly any broken parts, no driver errors, reasonably good performance. That was something to cheer about!
First of all I want to thank our super crew Jarkko Leipala, Jani Lindqvist, Ville Aartomaa (yes, he's Timo's son), Kari Oksanen, Ami Ruotsalainen, Timo Husu, Tuomas Jäntti, Timo Raisanen, Anders 'Charley' Karling and Carina Dahl. Special thanks go to members of our 2012 crew who had other commitments but who never stopped helping us at the shop and at the test weekend: Harry Raikkonen, Niko Vuorio and Riku Nieminen. A big Thank You to Janne Ahonen for the trust and the opportunity to run the Top Fuel operation, and for the great driving as well. We were running for the first time without help from USA, and we couldn't have done it without the help of Sami Lehtimaki, Juha Sulanko and Don Bender. Special thanks also go to Tommi and Anita Racing, OK Racing, Jarmos Custom Auto, Andy Robinson Race Cars, ME Racing Services and Heikki Lehtikangas / PSME.
We have plans (dreams) about running the second Tierp event this year. If the stars are lined up right it might happen. Anyway, everybody felt that it was really good to be back, and we are absolutely stunned by the reception we received from fellow racers on our return - it was good to be back!
On a roll no longer.
15th July: The Jimmy Ålund Pro Stock Racing Team led the FIA European Championship points going into the FHRA Nitro Nationals and were ready to continue a season which had been very good thus far with two number one qualifying spots, one event win and four new European records from two events. PiPPi writes:
Things looked good with no technical issues from the earlier races and no chance of rain. Quite the contrary, the forecast was sunny with very high temperatures. This made for a tricky track and some unexpected problems for Jimmy. He was last qualifier after the first round and though things did improve, it was not a satisfied team which went to work on the car after all rounds of qualifying were done with Jimm in number four qualifying position.
"No, we did definitely not bring our A-game to qualifying at Alastaro", says Jimmy. "This is a race track we really like. It was very hot which is no surprise to us but we could not figure out how to get good Elapsed Times in qualifying. The other teams and drivers knew what they were doing while we were struggling more than we have done all season."
The Jimmy Ålund Pro Stock Racing Team went into Sunday's eliminations knowing that they have been able pick up the pace from less than stellar qualifying sessions at past events. "Yes, last season we won the Championship by the slightest of margins even though we did not run as well in qualifying as we've done the first two races this year", says Jimmy. Up against fifth qualifier Jan Ericsson in the first round of eliminations, Jimmy left hard but shook the tyres while Ericsson did his job with a solid run which put Jimmy on the trailer.
Not the best of weekends for the Jimmy Ålund Pro Stock Racing Team. "That's the understatement of the year", says Jimmy. "This is such a tough class to race in. There is not the slightest room for errors if you want to collect points. We're now looking forward to the next round in Sweden more than ever".
Jimmy left Alastaro still in the points lead but that lead has now been cut to fourteen points, less than one round win in front of Thomas Lindström. The next event for the Jimmy Ålund Pro Stock Racing Team is the Sweden Internationals at Tierp where qualifying starts on the morning of Friday 21st August.
Projoint's Triple backing.
15th July: Mark 'Nipper' Stevens and Gary Clarke, organisers of this weekend's Kawasaki Triples Euro Meeting at Shakespeare County Raceway, are pleased to announce that this years Super Eliminator trophies are to be sponsored by Jerry Collier's Projoint Custom Fabrications. Jerry Cookson writes:
Many of you will remember Jerry racing a nitrous oxide-assisted H2 back in 2004. To this day the bike is still the world's third quickest at 8.03 seconds. Jerry has recently constructed three bespoke Kawasaki Triple chassis, so to provide the trophies for the winner and runner up for the Triples Euro Weekend seems very appropriate.
This year's Super Eliminator has already attracted interest from riders in the UK as well as a squad from Germany which this year is headed up by Ralf Schipmann and Andreas Richter. But don't be surprised if Messrs Clarke and Stevens are high up on the qualifying ladder as both will be looking to run high eights!
15th July: As Ida Salin's picture shows, Finnish Supertwin racer and longtime Eurodragster.com contributor Asko Määttä tried to blow up Per Bengtsson's head when destroying his motor at the FHRA Nitro Nationals. If he is to race again soon then Baldie needs a set of Overkill cases; if you can help then please drop him a line at email@example.com.
If you were at Dragstalgia or if you have read Simon's pit notes from the event then you will know that Doug Bond's first trip in the Bond, Hannis and Osborne slingshot was marred by blower damage. The team are urgently seeking either a 14.71 Helix or roots blower and have cash waiting. If you can help then please call Doug on 01242 513100 (office hours), or Martyn Hannis on 07702115548.
Web site updates.
15th July: Many thanks to Andy Marrs of TSI Timers Europe for forwarding us the official timing data from Dragstalgia. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
The contrast couldn't have been any wider: after the cold and rain at the opening round at Tierp Arena, there were almost tropical conditions at the second round of the EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship at Alastaro. In bright sunshine the Finnish fans enjoyed a full programme of four qualifying runs, full eliminations and the traditional Finnish prizegiving ceremony with the winners going head first into a water barrel. Samu Kemppainen, Robert Karlsson and Dag Wagenius took this tradition for granted, as the race winners now also lead the Championships in their respective categories. You can read more in Remco Scheelings' latest report on the EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship web site at www.edrspro.com.
Robin Jackson tells us that the official report and video of the third round of the MSA British Pro Modified Championship, which took place at the SPRC Summernationals, are now available at www.msadragracing.co.uk.
The official web site of the UK's Chaos Fuel Altered has been updated with a report from the SPRC Summernationals. You can take a look at www.chaos-fuel-altered.com.
With the Timewarp Nostalgia FC currently out of commission team member Chris Eyre somewhat unusually spent Dragstalgia as a spectator and thoroughly enjoyed himself. You can check out Chris' pictures from Saturday at www.eurodragpics.com.
After three years' absence the Old Skool Suzuki web site and forum have returned. The original site was intended as a technical hub for those dedicated to the modification and tuning of in-line four-cylinder Suzukis from the 1980s and early 1990s and quickly became the only place to go for information on modernising and tuning the GS, GSX or GSXR. The relaunched site can be found at www.oldskoolsuzuki.info.
Bug Jam racer update.
13th July: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding details of the arrangements for this weekend's Bug Jam at Santa Pod Raceway.
Thursday 16th July
10:00 Gates open
21:00 Gates close
Friday 17th July
09:00 Gates open
09:30 Race car scrutineering commences (no formal order)
14:00 Run What You Brung commences (DVLC licences only)
20:00 Run What You Brung finishes
Saturday 18th July
08:30 Signing On office open (Competition licences only)
08:30 Race car scrutineering commences (no formal order)
10:00 Run What You Brung commences (DVLC licences only)
15:00 Run What You Brung finishes
16:00 Qualifying commences
Sunday 19th July
08:00 Signing On office open (Competition licences only)
08:00 Race car scrutineering commences (no formal order)
10:00 Qualifying and eliminations commence
Saturday's and Sunday's provisional running orders are available and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please note that as ever these running orders are provisional and subject to change due to weather or track conditions or for any other reason deemed necessary by race officials.
The final official entry list is available and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Please remember the curfew: no race vehicle motors are to be started before 09:00 or after 20:00 on any day. Breach of curfew can result (has resulted) in exclusion from the meeting. If going to scrutineering before 09:00 then please tow or push, do not drive.
SPRC would appreciate it if UK racers have their bank sort code and account number with them so that winnings can be paid directly into their accounts by Bacs the day after the event. Cheques will still be available to those who would prefer them, however SPRC would prefer to use Bacs as bank charges are lower and racers will receive their money sooner.
13th July: After a glorious Friday and Saturday of nostalgia action at Santa Pod Raceway Dragstalgia was curtailed by rain half way through yesterday. Sprinkles during the lunch break quickly turned into a prolonged deluge which put recovery beyond the planned end of the event leaving race officials with no choice but to call a halt.
Despite the unfortunate end it was a fantastic weekend with plenty to enjoy on track and a lot to see off-track with the very welcome return of classic cars and bikes (and their riders and drivers) and the débuts of some new Nostalgia-themed race vehicles.
For an account of the weekend check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Dragstalgia coverage. Between Simon's extensive pit notes, including Eurodragster.com sponsor Jon Webster's account of his eventful maiden flight in his new Nostalgia slingshot, and Kirstie's and Julian's huge daily galleries (Saturday's 510 pictures being a new record) we had everything covered.
You can check out our Dragstalgia coverage by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
British Drag Racing Hall of Fame 2015.
11th July: The British Drag Racing Hall Of Fame in association with US Automotive continues into its ninth successful year and is pleased to announce the 2015 intake. Nominees are eligible by dint of having raced, owned, designed, built, maintained, prepared, promoted, officiated, supported or taken part in British drag racing in any capacity, having been involved for at least twenty years, or having made a significant and recognisable contribution to the sport.
The 2015 inductees, in alphabetical order, are:
JOHN CLIFT Profile by Keith Lee
Anyone remotely interested in motorcycle drag racing during the 1970s and 1980s will be familiar with the name John Clift. He was always a determined, hard-charging competitor in Top Fuel, or Top Bike as it was called at the time; arguably the most competitive class in British drag racing during that period.
John originally competed in road racing up to National level, but a friend kept nagging him to have a go at sprinting. He started out drag racing in 1971 running in the Junior Bike class, but made rapid strides through the bike ranks as he developed his machinery.
John made his name first with a supercharged Triumph, interestingly called The Co-respondent, and John was the third rider below nine seconds in a record breaking 1975 season. By 1979 he had set the 1000cc record at 8.34/165.
In the search for better and stronger items to keep him racing, John was an early collaborator with British Drag Racing Hall of Fame member Pete Davies, helping to develop the world dominating Puma engine parts. But he was also a talented fabricator. Many well-known riders of the day, both in the UK and abroad, would use one of his rolling chassis or other fabricated components. His advice and generous financial terms were renowned throughout the paddock. At the same time he was a fierce competitor on the track, and would always make race day - no matter how many hours of work and travel miles it took.
John was one rider who helped build good relations in Holland in particular, where he and wife Pat were always very welcome guests – as they were at any drag racing or sprint meeting. Their two daughters, Julie and Nikki, were brought up in the pits, and went on to be involved in the bike side of the sport themselves. Grandson Jamie now crews for Rune Fjeld Racing.
The Puma Weslake, featuring the first of Puma's billet heads, was still competitive in the mid-1980s, ending with a best of 8.21/181.
John's on track career ended in the Pro Stock Bike class, winning the European Championship in 1988 on a Suzuki, before retiring in 1990. At that time he was actually constructing a state of the art Top Fuel Bike, which would feature the first complete four cylinder Puma billet motor. Sadly rising costs delayed its completion, but the machine did go to Australia, where ex-pat Jay Upton became a top runner.
Rarely do you come across someone involved in drag racing who is so universally liked and respected as John. When a rider had mechanical gremlins he was always first on the scene to offer a helping hand; often putting his own racing activities in jeopardy due to the time spent in helping out others.
John's outgoing and generous-in-spirit personality has been an asset to British drag racing. It is for this and his commitment to drag bike racing as a competitor and an inventive constructer that he has been inducted into the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame.
KEN COOPER Profile by Herb Andrews and Nick Pettitt
When people talk about the true pioneers of British drag racing and hot rodding, the name Ken Flathead Cooper comes close to the top of the list. He bought his first car, a '37 Ford coupe, in 1959 and being an avid reader of Hot Rod magazine he soon turned it into a hot rod by fitting a '41 Mercury flathead with dual exhausts, lowering the front suspension and painting it bright yellow.
Ken was one of the first members of the British Hot Rod Association and at the first AGM was elected as Midlands Division Secretary. He also formed a local Hot Rod club known as the Roadrunners.
Ken began constructing his first dragster in 1960 – based on what he had seen in Hot Rod magazine. By that time things were starting to move forward for drag racing in Britain. Sydney Allard had announced that he was building a dragster and things were looking good. But there was a problem. The RAC, who governed motor sport in the UK at that time, did not have a separate class for dragsters. Instead they grouped dragsters with cars designed for sprinting meaning front brakes and engine covers had to be fitted. This certainly did not fit in with Ken's idea of what a dragster should look like. If he was going to build one he wanted it to be like what he had seen in Hot Rod magazine so in 1962 he dumped the part-finished dragster chassis at the bottom of his garden. Instead, he built another hot rod from a ’33 Ford Cabriolet - flathead powered of course, and much lighter than his first attempt.
With news in 1964 that the RAC had recognised dragsters as a separate class, Ken literally dragged his chassis out of the weeds in his garden and set about finishing it for the 1965 season, debuting at the first practice meet at Graveley. Known as Bazooka it was powered by another Mercury flathead, topped off by three carbs on a Navarro manifold. Running methanol and with Edelbrock heads fitted it was looking every bit like the American dragsters he had so much admired.
Ken replaced it with a new updated and longer Bazooka Too in 1967, followed later by Blast from the Past and continued racing, tuning and building more chassis up to 1981. His best times were 10.68/132, not bad for a flathead even today.
In 1974 Ken and the late Tony Beadle had formed the British Flathead Racers Association. Flatheads were relatively cheap then and the Association was formed mainly as an inexpensive way to go racing. Ken built many of the cars in the BFRA and would always go out of his way to help fellow racers with Flathead tuning and chassis construction advice.
Ken's passion and enthusiasm for Flathead drag racing is still as strong today as it ever was so when his son Bradley showed an interest to race in 2009, Ken at 72 years old set about building another new flathead dragster. It débuted in 2012 with Bradley in the driver's seat and Ken looking after the tuning. The period correct attention to detail is fantastic, looking once again like it's jumped from the pages of a 1950s Hot Rod magazine and the Back from the Past dragster has been a popular addition at nostalgia drag races ever since.
It is for his pioneering roles in promoting hot rodding and drag racing in the early years and his continued support of Sportsman class drag racing for over fifty years that Ken Cooper has been inducted into the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame.
YVONNE TRAMM Profile by Simon Groves
Yvonne Tramm and husband Steve first went to Santa Pod Raceway in late 1974. They were completely blown away by the spectacle and from the beginning of 1975 until today they have only missed five events. Children arrived, Spencer and Kirstie, and from a very early age the family sat on the spectator bank at the end of the quarter mile enjoying the racing. They joined the then organising club the British Drag Racing and Hot Rod Association, and after it had been renamed the British Drag Racing Association (BDRA) in 1983 Yvonne become the General Secretary of a club with around 1000 members at that time.
Most of the work was carried out at home, with all the family helping to send out tickets to racers, circulating the club magazine Drag Racing News and taking in membership subscriptions. Most of the press liaison was carried out by the club in those days too. There were Area Representatives to manage; they would organise evening social meetings for like-minded racers and spectators in pubs featuring drag racing films and presentations by the top racers of the day. These meetings were an important part of communicating with club members in the days prior to Facebook, Twitter, E-Mail and Club web sites. Yvonne also ran the Club Shop at Santa Pod Raceway, selling merchandise at the track and by mail order.
In the late 1980s, Yvonne started managing the signing-on of racers. This included much on-the-day chasing of competitors. International meetings provided a special challenge and stories of Yvonne rushing down the fire-up road to sign on Swedish competitor the late Lee Anders Hasselstrom just prior to his next Funny Car pass, and confronting Norwegian Rune Fjeld - who has claimed to her on many occasions that he does not speak English - are now part of European drag racing folklore.
At the end of 1990, Yvonne decided to take a break from the BDRA which was merging with the recently-folded National Drag Racing Club, becoming the British National Drag Racing Association organising meetings at venues other than Santa Pod Raceway. But this retirement lasted only a few months because early in 1991 Yvonne was asked to join the Santa Pod Racers Club which had become the host organising club at Santa Pod Raceway. She worked at the track on merchandising and organising the Dinner Dance, until about seven years ago when she switched to the Signing On office.
The late Paula Marshall was the General Secretary at that time, but when Paula became ill Yvonne once again took on the role of organising the Dinner Dance along with recording the meeting minutes for the SPRC Executive Committee, Inter Club meetings, Riders' and Drivers' meetings and the Tech Committee as well as managing the UK National Drag Racing Championships and the SPRC Club Championships; all quite a handful alongside a full-time career.
As well as being a key member of the team which organises racing at Santa Pod, Yvonne has become friends with many UK racers of whom she thinks of as her second family. In fact she has done her share of crewing for teams steered by the racing activities of Spencer and Kirstie Tramm. This involved her in supporting Spencer's racing at NHRA meetings at Las Vegas and Pomona as well as in the UK, building and running a Pro Mod car and Kirstie's photography for Eurodragster.com.
But it is for her thirty two years of tireless work on the organisational side of drag racing that Yvonne Tramm has been inducted into the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame. Without people like Yvonne the sport simply could not exist.
Members of the Hall of Fame receive a 'Bootsie', a trophy encapsulating an image of the late Allan 'Bootsie' Herridge, a man who put so much into British drag racing, together with an exclusive commemorative pin. They join the élite list of inductees from previous years and will be listed on the official British Drag Racing Hall of Fame web site which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the British Hall of Fame link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. The Hall of Fame trophies will be presented at the Gala Awards Dinner at the Savill Court Hotel, Windsor Great Park on 21st November.
The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame is sponsored by USAutomotive, Beech Underwriting, Lucas Oil Products, Santa Pod Racers Club, Santa Pod Raceway, Shakespeare County Raceway, Pennine Drag Racing Club/York Raceway, Avon Park International Racing Association, Julie Braskett; MQQNEYES; International Organization of Professional Drivers Ltd; Rat Trap Racing and Eurodragster.com.
Trophy picture courtesy and ©Ian Messenger
11th July: We have a birthday on the Eurodragster.com team today. Please join Tog, Simon and Julian in wishing ace lenswoman Kirstie Tramm a very Happy Birthday.
10th July: Many thanks to Ian Marshall of Santa Pod Racers Club for forwarding us the final version of the official MSA Pro Modified entry list for the Mopar EuroNationals which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 24th-26th July. You can check out the entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
UK Pro Modified racer and Eurodragster.com sponsor Andy Robinson is offering a T-Shirt with a great design by Like Hell. The shirt is available in S, M, L and XL and comes in at £15 plus postage. To order yours call 01256 880589 or E-Mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Racer of the Week on Racers Reunion Radio next Monday (13th) is UK Pro ET racer Mike Lacey. You will be able to tune in at www.zeusradio.com/racersreunion-radio between 01:45 and 02:00 UK Monday / Tuesday.
UK Wild Bunch racer and multiple Champion Adz Price is cycling from London to Paris in two weeks in aid of Diabetes Research. Adz would like to thank all those who have already sponsored him and if you would like to add your support then it is not too late; you can make a donation on Virgin Money Giving by clicking here. Team Gridlock will be back on track in 2016 "In another class, or classes" after regrouping and working on their photography and video businesses. "One thing for sure is that we miss racing like heck and we can't wait to be back on the track."
Good luck and stay safe to ex-pat-UK Top Alcohol Dragster racer Michael Manners of Eurodragster.com sponsor Cosmo Residences who is competing at this weekend's Lucas Oil Route 66 NHRA Nationals presented by General Tire in Joliet, as are Sweden's Jonnie Lindberg and Ulf Leanders in Top Alcohol Funny Car. Qualifying commences today and you will be able to stay in touch with Mike's, Jonnie's and Ulf's progress on the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com.
Many thanks to Andy Marrs of TSI Timers Europe for forwarding us the official Jap Show timing data. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Web site updates.
10th July: Our good buddy Remco Scheelings, who never seems to stop working to promote drag racing, has again had a busy few days and his latest production is his FHRA Nitro Nationals coverage for The Netherlands' Autosport with the usual excellent on- and off-track reports. You can check out the on-track report by clicking here and the off-track report by clicking here.
Pasi Uponen of Finland's Bomber magazine has posted excellent Pro and Sportsman galleries from the FHRA Nitro Nationals on his web site at www.pasiu.kuvat.fi/kuvat.
Thirty eight for the Twentieth.
9th July: Race Co-ordinator Claire Meaddows writes that the UK's Wild Bunch are very much looking forward to this weekend's Dragstalgia at Santa Pod where a record total of thirty eight teams have entered, particularly fitting for the nostalgia racers' Twentieth Anniversary season:
The entry list includes regulars and a few newcomers as well as some overseas guests with a variety of slingshots, altereds, dragsters and Funny Cars, back-up girls, push cars, wheelies, the Cacklefest and some fire burnouts. Plus a whole lot of close exciting racing!
This event will be the half-way point of their season and will feature Wild Bunch Series Round 3, Spirit of Nostalgia Challenge Series Round 6 and Roy Wilding Nostalgia Race Cars Round 2. The Wild Bunch Series is currently led by Keith Crampton in the Soul Town Shaker slingshot having won both of the previous rounds, followed in joint second place by Bob Morgan in B-Sting and Tom Larman in The Ferret. Gina Durrant in the Tiki Munki slingshot coupe and Darryl Howells in the Chemical Reaction slingshot are in joint fourth place. The Spirit of Nostalgia Challenge Series is led by Phil James in the Rampage Funny Car, followed by Terry Clifford in the Ratcatcher Resurrection slingshot. Darryl Howells is in third place and Keith Crampton in fourth and only a handful of points separate them all, so it can all change after this event! Keith is having a great season as he is also leading the Roy Wilding Series followed by Bob Morgan, Tom Larman and Darryl Howells respectively. Wild Bunch ET and Speed record holder Bob Hawkins in the Time Traveller II blown slingshot will be looking for quicker and faster times than the fantastic 6.918 / 203.42 records posted earlier this season.
At Dragstalgia, the Wild Bunch are being sponsored by Ian Blackett, Santa Pod's resident RWYB photographer, and Scot Durrant of Scottie's Car Transportation on as well as Team East with the Ellie’s in Trouble Now slingshot. All are kindly contributing prize money, and the Spot Prize trophies are sponsored by Team East. Many thanks to all of them!
Further information can be found at www.the-wild-bunch.co.uk or Like our Facebook group The Wild Bunch Nostalgia Drag Racing Club. Check out that entry list on the Santa Pod's Dragstalgia page; with so many teams entered, the competition is bound to be close, so we can’t wait to find out the winners on Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!
See you at the drags!
Looking forward to a Dry pit.
9th July: Steve and Lesley Field's FieldCraft Fabrication Wild Bunch team are heading to Dragstalgia with just one of three bottles of champagne left to open:
After a character-building 2014 season, the Black Pig Too period-perfect slingshot was re-débuted this year with an artistic Mondrian theme. Built and fabricated entirely by Steve and Lesley, the car runs a 385 Small Block Chevy with a single carb on supermarket petrol. The first cork popping episode came at the recent NSRA Nostalgia Nationals with #1 driver Steve at the controls. He wheelied his way to Personal Best 8.878 ET and 148.44 mph during the Wild Bunch rounds. Bests for the driver and car alike, a great run but the magic 150 mph was still eluding him.
Just a week later, the car was back on the strip at the SPRC Summernationals with #2 driver Sarah Howells of DASH Racing in the hot seat. It wasn’t just the driver that changed, the chameleon car was now gleaming in a fetching purple and gold leaf outfit! There were double takes all round and several people asking where the other car was! After a few checkout passes during the Peak Performance day to get acquainted with the car, Sarah had run down to a best ET of 9.11 and 146 mph so things were looking good for the weekend.
Sarah had hoped to be paired up with husband Darryl in the Chemical Reaction slingshot but some checks late Friday uncovered an issue which the team ran out of time to rectify before the last qualifying run, despite driving around the country gathering parts during Saturday. Big thanks to Cliff and Frank Griffin for doing their level best to get things sorted with bits and bobs, hopefully all fixed up now for Dragstalgia! Instead of pairing up with Darryl, Sarah snuck in besides Terry Clifford in the stunning Ratcatcher Resurrection slingshot and in the first qualifying round broke out against the conservative 9.31 dial in with a 9.15/148.12 combination. The nerves were on their way out!
The second qualifier, again paired with Terry (and now immortalised on the Santa Pod video) resulted in Sarah’s first eight in this car, 8.99, and the car's fastest speed to date at 149.57 mph. The third qualifier, again alongside fellow eight-second racer Terry, proved that the cobwebs had been well and truly blasted away when the 8.93 and 152.08 mph were posted on the scoreboards. The team celebrated the success with the popping of more champagne corks and the sacking of their #2 driver for going too quick! Quite frankly she should have been sacked for sleeping on the lights and going out in round one on the Sunday but she’s on probation pending better performance at the next MSA event in August!
Congratulations to Alan Loten on his first round win in Paranoia, to Bob Hawkins for yet more stellar sixes and to Terry Clifford for winning the event in such style. Thanks to Chris Head and Bernie Nicholas plus of course Darryl for support and crewing. Thanks to the commentary team for electing Black Pig Too as the Best Appearing Car, to Claire Meaddows for her endless running around, and also to the marshals and track staff for ensuring the entire event was completed despite the downpour and other challenges on Sunday.
#1 driver Steve is back in control for Dragstalgia so get your cameras ready for wheels-up launches and the popping of that final champagne cork as he hunts down his own magic numbers!
Stand by for Outlaw entertainment!
9th July: With two rounds already contested, the 2015 Supercharged Outlaws Series reaches its halfway stage at this weekend's Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway. Dave McKenzie writes that amongst the seventeen teams entered are two from France, one from The Netherlands and one from Germany:
The mixture of cars is what the Outlaws are about. We gave Funny Cars, altereds and doorslammers and this event includes the début of Doug and Joe Bond's new slingshot. We have been lacking in slingshots for a while so this is a welcome addition to the class. More slingshots are on the way.
The battle for the series is already hotting up with last year’s joint winners again in pole position: Paul Watts at number one with Lee Gallimore breathing down his neck in number two spot. With only 69 points between first and sixth place there is still a lot to race for with 83 points available to the winner of an event. The Series standings are as follow:
The Thing gets stretched.
9th July: Dave McKenzie also writes that Team Thing have returned to the Supercharged Outlaws this year with a different-looking car:
Gone is the altered body and in its place is a Dodge Daytona Funny Car body. The chassis has been updated from the firewall forward with an extra eighteen inches to accommodate the Funny Car body. The rear axle has been updated with a new set of gears from Currie Enterprises California. A reconditioned fuel pump was purchased from Clive Bush - it works too well for our 350 ci Small Block, but a phone call to Jim Maher at Good Vibrations Motorsport in California and we had some settings for our fuel system. These will be put to the test at Dragstalgia. New rear slicks were purchased to help us get the power down, the engine was freshened up, a new block was purchased, and a lot of info was gleaned from racers with a similar set-up at the March Meet in Bakersfield.
At Dragstalgia we are hoping to get the car to run closer to the times we would like to see, i.e. sevens. With a big contingent of Supercharged Outlaws we will be up against some good opposition. None of this would be possible without the help of our sponsors, a big Thank You to them all: BJB Fork Lift Trucks, Grimsby; NDK Non Destructive Testing Solutions, Grimsby; Lincs Doors, producers of doors and accessories for cold storage and the food industry; Stevenson Furniture Centre, Grimsby and Total Signs, Grimsby.
Payne's Pro Mod return.
9th July: UK Pro Modified racer Mick Payne made a welcome return at the SPRC Summernationals at Santa Pod Raceway sporting a new motor and trans package. The team had had a mountain to climb even to make it to the event and still needed a Sherpa at the race weekend. Mick explains:
I got the motor back from Dave Milam of She Devil Racing on 15th June, then we had to put motor in and fit everything around it. It may seem like a routine task as we had done it many times with the old car, but nearly everything was fighting us. Even on the Friday we were still putting the car together when we should have been at the track, but we eventually left around 3:00 pm. Twenty miles from the track had a blow-out on the brand new trailer, the first time we had used it.
We eventually got to the track that evening, set up and had our usual KFC (The dinner of Champions - Ed) then on Saturday the fight with the Camaro continued but we just kept working on it. During the day we lost the awning, thanks to all who helped to retrieve it, there was no major damage. After all that we got the motor fired, no leaks from anywhere which was good because ninety per cent of the plumbing was replaced or renewed. All of the new electrical systems worked OK, just a few very minor issues. We got all the tech inspection and scrutineering carried out with no problem, thanks to all of the Santa Pod people and tech crew for their help, as usual second to none.
We missed the last qualifying session by about forty five minutes, but in a way we had a successful weekend. It was hard-fought, but that's racing and if it was easy then everyone would be doing it. I would like to say a big Thank You to my crew Dan, Andy, new members Keith, Steve Large of Large Engineering, Neil, and my best mate Dave who only moved back from Spain the week before but spent every day helping. They all worked very hard in the weeks leading up to the Summernationals and throughout the race weekend. Cheers boys, roll on the Mopars.
9th July: UK Pro Modified racer Bert Englefield writes that the B and A Racing 1938 Ford Coupe finally made the step up at the SPRC Summernationals which it has been promising for the last year:
Qualifying produced mixed results. The first session was a crossed-up two-wheel affair caused by too much clutch. In the second session we planned to take out a lot of clutch out to get into the ladder as there were ten cars entered. In the final qualifying session we changed the first gear ratio in the Lenco and put the clutch settings back from the first session. The result was a new Personal Best of 6.42 at 222 mph.
This set us up for a first round against Jean Dulamon who had run 6.46 in qualifying and had run a great 6.30 at the Main Event. We decided to leave everything as it was and take our chances. I had a slight start line advantage and held on for the win, the scoreboard shocked the whole team and probably everyone else in Pro Mod - we had just run 6.34 at 224 mph to Jean's losing 6.38. In the semi finals we were up against Rick Garrett which would be another hard race as those nitrous cars are pretty consistent at getting down the track. We obviously had Rick worried as he pulled a red light which I never saw. Andrew came on the radio and told me to shut it off which I did but I thought that perhaps the motor was smoking as I never heard him say that rick had redlit.
That set us up for a final with Kev Slyfield. We nearly didn't make the final as we had a broken valve spring and an electrical problem which meant that we had no Racepak for the shift lights, no Six Shooter or fuel management. There was obviously a broken wire somewhere but we couldn't find it in time - it took us twenty minutes the next night at the workshop. Our plan was to launch it and shut off and hope that Kev redlit or shook. In the end I short shifted it and ran 6.55 to Kev's 6.53 so it was a good race for the spectatators. The runner up finish put us second in the MSA Championship with three rounds to go, and a new goal to run a 6.2 this year.
We would like to thank Jon Salemi of Resolution Racing for a great fuel system; Carlo Gandolfi of CG Composites for the injector hat; Lee Child of LA Racing Parts for the VP Racing Fuels M1 methanol; Vince Belsey of Engine Parts UK for the King Racing bearings; and finally our long-suffering and hard-working crew.
Package for Mr Gough.
9th July: At Eurodragster.com HQ we often observe that a racer never forgets any race they lose. SPRC Summernationals Super Pro ET winner Simon Gough is one such but he made sure that he learned from the experience:
After the Main Event I spent loads of time studying our data. The loss against Ian Powell which put me out in the quarter finals was hard to take as it was due to me braking and scrubbing too much off before the finish line. I beat myself up for days over that one. But the better man took the win and I was pleased that he did, because that made me look further into our data and a good look at where my braking points should be. Scrubbing fifteen miles per hour off at 1200 feet, a Junior Dragster would have taken me out. So I was all guns blazing for the Summernationals.
I made two runs in testing on the Friday and it was all about carving the tree. Then it was all about the dial-in. We penned a 8.60 about an hour before we went down for our first qualifier. When we got to the zebra crossing Sharron indicated to me that the air was more clean and that the wind had dropped. So in with an 8.59 and we knew we would be very close, But Sodd's Law reared its ugly head: never change your mind! 8.60 flashed up, bollocks. By the second run the air quality was good, the wind was down and the track had more rubber so back in with an 8.56... where the 56 came from is beyond me. Double bollocks, 8.6007, Sharron had said 8.60. I knew full well my ears were going to get it and it all started, why don't you listen you a-hole, you would have had number one again. I thought "Smile your way through it, it won't last long" but no coffee when I got back as my coffee maker had the hump with me for not listening.
For Sunday's eliminations I don't know why or how but things just seemed different (You were getting coffee again? - Ed). Up against Peter Lane in the '55, played the top end and took the win. Next was Martyn Jones in the 6.00 Missile. I just lifted at the top end and scrubbed off five miles per hour to take the win. Next was Karl-Heinz Kleider in the Funny Car. Again took the line and scrubbed six miles per hour off at the top end. In the semi finals I had Marius Blackburn in the altered. Now there's a driver who likes to intimidate people on the start line, well, been there done that got T-shirts and videos. I was looking forward to this one. Burnouts done, smoke cleared, Dan brings me in to stage and nothing's moving in either lane. Now we're on it, slight bump into pre-stage then wait, and wait, so slipped it in to Neutral - I was going to stay there as long as Marius wanted as he wasn't getting to me one bit - it gave me time to look along the stands and the bank, then he found pre-stage. 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2... in I go, we're now staged and waiting, Marius brings it in and it's now dropping, off he went and I was chasing. You're having all this Marius, flat out. Dialled an 8.54 and ran a 8.5450. Destroyed him.
Next we were up against my pal Rene Ehrismann in Tim Cook's old '55 Bel Air. We had met before at last year's NitrOlympX, he took me out in the second round. He's no mug and I knew this was going to be a good race. 0.0801 reaction, dialled an 8.53, lifted at the top end and took five miles per hour off and took the win.
Our first win. We have been in two Top Sportsman finals and three Championship finals but no win. Five top quality races, five top quality drivers. Still riding the wave of the win, so happy, and so thankful to all my team and sponsors. Championship points are looking very good halfway through the season, so onwards and upwards: Top Sportsman at the Mopars then off to the NitrOlympX then it's European Finals and National Finals.
To everyone who sent me messages and text, thank you for making my first win so very important.
Summernats Sportsman ET review.
9th July: Many thanks to Conor Holt for sending us a review of Sportsman ET at the SPRC Summernationals:
It was the biggest field of the season with an impressive fifteen cars entered in the class. The list included James Forster who was forced to drop down into Sportsman ET after his Foxbody Mustang (which was due to be raced in Pro ET) broke, so he raced the family Subaru in Sportsman ET instead.
Session 1 of qualifying was a bit of a shock for the racers as only five of the fourteen cars broke out leaving first round winner Gillian Medley number one with a 15.33 on a 15.20 dial in. The big news however was that Jon Crawford broke his driveshaft off the line and had to be pushed back to the pit. A mammoth operation started back in the pits to get the parts in and fitted so that the car could come out in the next round. Craig Wright jumped to the number one spot with a 16.361 on a 16.31 dial in. He was closely followed by Matthew Moxon in his Mustang running 0.052 over his dial in of 13.34. The repaired Jon Crawford's Sharan went into the number five spot with a 17.827 on a 17.73. In the final session Jemma Hale, in her first ever event, took the number one spot going 0.025 over her dial-in. However it was short lived as in the next pair Championship leader Craig Wright took the top spot back going 0.023 over his dial-in claiming his first number one qualifier of the year by 0.002 seconds. Elsewhere first round winner Gillian Medley moved up to number five, 0.077 off her dial in.
First round eliminations started off with newcomer Jemma Hale up against seasoned pro Jon Crawford who red lit handing the win to Jemma. Next pair was Ricky Hale v Matthew Moxon and was close all the way to the end with Ricky winning with a 14.95 on a 14.85 dial-in to Matts 13.52 on a 13.45 dial-in, 0.007 seconds or 0.32 m between them at the stripe. Next was Michelle Walker and surprise entry James Forster, Michelle pulled a massive red light handing the win to James. Returning racer Joe Richards was up next against Andy Dibley Andy’s 16.56 (16.40) was enough to beat Joes 16.37 (16.15) to move on into round two. Next pair was husband v wife in the persons of Alan Medley and Gillian Medley, Gillian took the win by 0.04 seconds. Next pair saw Jane McCready being pushed back for a leak which turned out to be water on the sills of the car but this gave Stephen Cherrett a bye into the next round. Next was an all-girl affair with Holly Sanders taking on Felicity Gibbs, Holly red lit by -0.05 seconds handing the win to felicity. The final race of the session was Craig Wright on a bye for number one qualifier, he broke out with a 16.41 on a 16.45 dial-in but it didn’t matter.
The Quarter Finals started off with Ricky Hale and Andy Dibley, Ricky had the better RT by 0.03 and had extended his lead against Andy winning by 0.18 seconds with a 14.93 on a 14.85 dial in. Next pair was again an all-female race with Gillian Medley who won her first event up against rookie Jemma Hale, Unfortunately Jemma couldn’t emulate Gillian’s success as she pulled a red light by 0.01 seconds. Next up was birthday boy Craig Wright against Felicity Gibb, Craig was noticeably quicker off the line (0.03 to Felicity’s 0.34) and he extended it to 0.21 seconds running a 16.64 on a 16.35 dial-in. Final pair was Stephen Cherrett and James Forster both pulled great lights (Stephen 0.06, James 0.02) Stephen got to the line first but broke out by 0.09 seconds giving the win to James.
Into the semi-finals and the firts race was a repeat of final round of the past three events, Ricky Hale and Craig Wright. Craig was very quick off the line again with a 0.009 RT. They were close all the way down the track with 0.005 seconds or 0.22 m between them at the line but Ricky broke out by 0.09 seconds giving the win to Craig, sending him to the final. In the other semi-final James Forster lined up against Gillian Medley who was looking to go into the final round for the second time in two events. Gillian left first 0.01 to James’ 0.06 but James drove around her with a 18.61 on an 18.50 dial-in.
So the final was set, birthday boy Craig Wright up against late entry James Forster, both had good RTs 0.02 for James and 0.04 for Craig. James crossed the line with a 18.540 on a 18.50 dial in but was no match for Craig who ran a 16.400 on a 16.40 dial in, giving him the win and the Eurodragster.com / Gold RV Perfect ET Award of £50.
The win has given Craig a 970 point lead at the top of the Championship over second-place Ricky Hale. Gillian Medley moves back up to third 1,450 points behind even though she has only competed in two events. Sixty points separate the next three with Felicity leading Jon Crawford and Stephen Cherrett. Matthew Moxon, Andrew Dibley, Holly Sanders and runner-up James Forster round out the top ten. Next up for Sportsman ET is Bug Jam at Santa Pod next week.
Summernats Junior Bike review.
9th July: Many thanks to Lizz McCarthy for passing on the Junior Drag Bike racers' accounts of the SPRC Summernationals:
Louis Davies: Q1 Started off with a very hot day and it was only going to get hotter so for the first run I dialled in 9.80 just to get a checkout pass done, it was a clean pass and I broke out with a 9.75. Q2 A little bit hotter than the first run and I dialled in a 9.65 to get a good qualifying position but then way too slow with a 9.85 which put me in third. Q3 It was the hottest part of the day and because of the slower pass before I dialed in a 9.72 and ran even slower than before with a 9.91 so going in to race day in fourth. E1 First round was against Blade Dummer, I knew he was going slow off the line, I dialled in a 9.75 to be safe but shut off way too early running a 10.33 which meant Blade won the round. Well done Blade. Well done to Stacey Reed and Liam Holgate for getting to the final and a big thanks to all the people who made it a great weekend. Thank you to Rene van den Berg for the sponsorship this year and thanks to dragbike.com, the British Drag Hall of fame and Dave Brader at CC Performance for sponsoring the Junior Drag Bike qualifying trophies.
Blade Dummer: Another great weekend at Santa Pod. We arrived early Friday so we could get some test runs in as I'm still trying to learn the bike and had mixed results with bogging off the line. Dad’s going to change the gearing a bit see if that helps or if it's me too keen on the clutch lever. Anyway qualifying wasn't great as the bike kept bogging down on the start line but was improving and it's only the second time at the track on the bike. We drew Louis for the first round of eliminations so knew this was going to be hard we changed the dial in slightly and bogged off the line again but the bike picks up speed real good when it's moving and quickly caught Louis up and just nipped on the line. It was close so a great race. Round 2 we had Stacey and knew this was another real hard round I bogged again but not as bad and Stacey was just right on her dial in so a great real close race. Next for us is make some changes ready for Holland which I can't wait for... Well done to Liam on the win and Stacey for runner up, great racing guys! Big thanks to the crew at the Pod for keeping the track running so well. Dragbike.com the BDRHoF, onthebottle.com, Fast by me turbos, magicbullet.com, Herm for my frame he built, and we may have something funky for the bike from Rukus Customs check them out and watch this space. Also big thanks to my dad for all his running round and Lizz for sorting us all out and promoting the class, and doing the press releases, and getting us to Holland too!
Stacey Reed: Another fab weekend! First two qualifiers didn't go quite to plan and I qualified tenth then luckily my last run pulled me up to second place which I was very proud of. I ran a 9.56 on a 9.48. Well done to Jack Shook for first qualifier!. Sunday came and we were praying the rain away! Eventually it stopped and first elimination I had Will Pickering. I ran a 9.97 on a 9.60 and took the win. Next round I was up against Blade. I dialled a 9.66 and ran a 9.84 and took the win. It was such a close race, only won by 0.045! Well done Blade. Fortunately in the next round I had a bye to the final! This was a test to see how quick I could go and for some reason went slower than I thought. I ran a 9.83 which kinda sucked. It's final time! I was up against Liam and dialled a 9.80 and Liam dialled a 9.40. I got a bit over-excited and broke out with a 9.77 run. A massive well done to Liam for taking the win! Also, a big thanks to the Junior Drag Bike Club and all of its sponsors, dragbike.com, BDRHoF, CC performance for the qualifying trophies and Lizz for doing the press releases, and much more! See you all next meeting.
Liam Holgate: I had an inset day on Friday so Dad decided to come up early and do the Test and Tune Day. I was quite glad we did as I had a new engine that I hadn't ridden with yet. My first run was terrible I had no drive as the clutch was slipping, I got back to the pits and told Dad but he already knew and had the tools out ready. For the rest of the day Dad adjusted and played with the clutch but he couldn't get it to work right I was a bit worried as I hadn't had a good run yet with the new engine. Saturday was qualifying and Dad had been up late last night and early this morning trying to sort the clutch problem. First qualifying run I staged and hoped for a good launch but the bike lurched forward and stalled, Dad came over and pushed me back but he was happy as he said at least he had stopped the clutch slipping. Second run Dad had changed the clutch springs and changed the weight on the lockup clutch, I staged and launched, no clutch slip. We set an ET of 10.00 as we didn't know where to go, I ran a 9.45/64.5 and broke out but I was happy as the bike was working. Third and final qualifier we set a 9.39 ET and ran a 9.47/64.9 good enough for fifth qualifier. Sunday first round of eliminations was against Jordan Kenway, he also had a new engine and was trying to get to grips with it so was hoping for a close race. I set a 9.4 ET we staged and launched I got away well but Jordan caught me very quickly, a bit too quickly as he broke out and I took the win. Next round was against Charlotte Hales, I was being very consistent so set my ET to 9.4 again we staged and I launched first as Charlotte had to catch me it was close but Charlotte ran too fast and broke out I was through to the next round. Next I was against Jack, again I set my ET to 9.4. I staged first and we launched Jack seemed to bog on the line ,I ran a 9.52 just closer to my time and through to the finals. In the finals I was against Stacey and she was running very well this weekend and was going to be a tough race. I set my et at 9.4 again and hoped for the best. I staged and launched I was playing catch up this time and caught up with Stacey but she ran too fast and broke out! I couldn't believe it, I had won my first meeting and was so happy. I would like to thank Mum and Dad for all their help and for letting me race. See you all next round.
Jasmine Cordelle: I arrived Saturday morning as I was doing my Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award (Good for you - Ed) and didn't finish until Friday, got signed on and scrutineered, and ready to race. 1st qualifier, didn't really know what to dial in as I keep beating my Personal Bests. I dialled in 8.60 and broke out and ran 8.46. Second qualifier I dialled in 8.40 and ran a 8.52 at the end of that I was second qualifier. Third qualifier we dialled in 8.50 but ran 8.66 so Stacey the sneaky devil bumped me down to third place and she took second place, how rude ;) Sunday, first round I had Charlotte. I dialled in 8.50 and Charlotte dialled in 8.90 so we knew it was going to be close we were side by side all the way. I ran 8.55 and Charlotte ran 9.0 but Charlotte got there just before so she took the win by 0.02. Well done to her it was good race! Well done to Stacey and Liam! And thank you to Hysteria Racing Team and the sponsors of Junior Drag Bike, dragbike.com, the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame, and the qualifying trophies made by Dave Brader at CC Performance.
Alfie Udall: It started off great after seeing all my mates again. On my first run I dialed in an 8.7 and ran a 8.9 and came out as number one qualifier! On my next run I dialled in the same and ran the same and unfortunately lost number one qualifier. On my last run of the day we dialled in the same again hoping that the bike was going to stop misfiring and run fast. Unfortunately it ran another 8.9. The next day I had Jack in the first round. But as we started up the bike in the pairing lanes I instantly knew that there was something not right. We had electrical problems and the two step on the bike was stuck on without the clutch in. We dialed in slow to see what I could do. But as I launched the bike it stalled and that was my race over. Nevertheless I had a great weekend seeing all of my friends again! Once again I would like to say a big thank you to Jerry, Sharron and Scott Collier for allowing me to ride the RD and getting it ready for me! Thank you guys! Not forgetting my Dad thank you for bringing me and allowing me to race. Hopefully the next racing weekend will be a better one!
Charlotte Hales: We got to the track late Friday afternoon after long drive in all sorts of nasty traffic, only for it to rain while setting up, but thanks to Jerry and Sharron, Dad got to set the bike up under their cover. Saturday was a late first round of qualifying and Dad posted 8.9. Then after my burnout, he left my shifter safety lanyard in and I ran the whole track in first gear for a 16.24 run. I just can't get the right crew! Round two, we dialled in the same again and I ran a 9.24. Round three, again we dialled in a 8.9 and yet again I rode a 9.24 into the headwind. Dad said at least he knew I wouldn't break out in the quarter final like last time. Sunday morning it was raining and we didn't get to race until the afternoon. The first round was against Jasmine, I did a long burnout and launched on the poor old engines rev limiter. It was a very close race, I could see Jas out of the corner of my eye the whole time. I had just won with a 9.00. Next round was against Liam and Dad tried to play safe by dropping the dial-in to 8.88 - but I managed a 8.79 - oops... another 1/4 final breakout but in the circumstances I bettered my PB! Thanks to Dad, Mum, Sis Emily for the support and Martin Dust for the great bike build. Thanks to Dangerface Drag Racing, the Junior Drag Bike club, BDRHoF and dragbike.com for your support.
Will Pickering: It was nice to be back at the track again, and thanks to Mum and all the help I get from everyone there, is really appreciated. My first run put me in number four position, and although I was getting closer to my dial ins each run, and enjoyed every one of them, everyone also was also getting closer, and I was getting bumped further down. Sadly I was knocked out in the first round. However as always I had a great time, and can’t wait for the next one. Thanks to Tim and Wendy, Nick 'Shaggy' Daniels, Mum, Dave 'Rocket' Peters, Lizz, and everyone who has made me to feel so welcome.
Jack Shook: We started the weekend feeling confident after our win at the previous event. Our first run in Q1 didn't go to plan as we had mechanical failure with the air shifter resulting in a 10.80 pass. Q2 we had fixed the air shifter meaning we could do a full pass hopefully with no problems. We dialled in a 9.70 and ran a 9.723 bumping me up to number one qualifier. Q3 the bike picked up a flat spot on acceleration resulting in a slow pass. At the end of qualifying I was number one. Going into eliminatuons I was confident as I was number one qualifier but anxious on how the bike would run. The bike maintained its fault through eliminations but managed to get to the semis before being eliminated by Liam. Well done to Liam for the round win and to Stacey for runner up as well as number two qualifier. I would like to thank my Mum, Dad and brother for help throughout the weekend and also would like to thank Dragbike.com and BDRHoF.
Jordan Kenway: We arrived at Santa Pod on the Friday got signed on and everything ready for qualifying on the Saturday. Woke up on Saturday to amazing bright sunshine, this meeting would be the first meeting on my new KTM 200 so we decided to take it easy for the first couple of runs. Q1- we decided to dial in a safe 9.50, did the burnout and staged the bike, as soon as I let the clutch out the front wheel came up straight away and went left, right and then finally back down where I finished the run doing a 10.3. Q2 - this was more of the same but much more violent, crossed the line doing another ten but this time it was slower. After this run we took the time to look the bike over and discovered that the back wheel was pointing slightly to the left which could be the reason for the wheelies being uncontrollable. Q3- we dialed in a 9.90 thinking that it was be more of the same, well we were wrong. The bike still wheelied but kept going straight, I ran a 9.2 breaking out massively making me bottom qualifier. Woke up Sunday morning to rubbish weather delaying the running order, thanks to the Santa Pod crew who worked hard to dry the track we were finally able to run. I had Liam first round and I knew this would be a hard race. Dialled in a 9.25 to allow for a messy start, completed the burnout and had a little staging duel with Liam. After that the green light came on and I let the clutch out, it launched as quick as ever two wheelies as normal and I was flying through the gears. I shut off just before the eighth running 8.73/68. An 8.73! This was the fastest I have ever been and resulted in a new PB, I was a happy boy after this run and didn't care that I lost. Finally well done Liam who went on to win the meeting and Stacey for coming runner up, a massive thanks to Emerald Painters who sponsored me for this meeting, a huge thanks to Simon and Jerry for their help and support on and off the track and of course Mummy and Daddy for allowing me to race and buying me this new fast engine, see you all next meeting!
Lizz adds a big Bon Voyage, Good Luck and stay Safe to Charlotte Hales, Jake Charman, Louis Davies and Blade Dummer who are off on an adventure this weekend, competing at Quartermile Drag is Back at Drachten in The Netherlands betweem tomorrow and Sunday. "This will be the first time that the UK Junior Drag Bikes have raced in Europe, and I would like ask everyone to wish them all the very best", says Lizz. We're sure that all of our readers will join us in sending good wishes to the Junior Drag Bikers for the weekend.
8th July: Congratulations to Sweden's Micke Kågered who on Sunday became the first FIA Top Fuel Dragster racer to amass fifty round wins in FIA Top Fuel competition. Our good buddy Andy Marrs tells us that Micke has taken over the TF round-win lead from Andy Carter (46) and that his FIA career round wins including TMFC now stand at 101, making him the fourth racer over 100 round wins - Jimmy Ålund (120), Michael Malmgren (113) and Leif Andréasson (101) being the others. Micke is also the only FIA racer with fifty or more round wins in two classes. Bruno Bader and Mats Eriksson both reached 50 FIA Pro Modified round wins at Alastaro whilst Anita Mäkelä reached 50 FIA career round wins (TMD and TF) at Tierp in June.
From the depths of our Spam folder (No idea why it went there - Ed), SPRC Summernationals Funny Bike winner Bob Brooks writes to thank those who helped with his first event win in far too long. "Thanks firstly to my amazing crew who keep me safe and the bike all prepped ready to go", says Bob. "Secondly to all of the Pod staff, to finish a meeting after such a late start and oildowns was simply stunning. Well done. Thirdly, thanks to all the rest of the Funny Bike crowd for providing great racing and a fantastic atmosphere. Commiserations to those who sustained damage, hope you all get back up and running without too much grief."
Chris Emms writes that Cool Green Racing have reluctantly called it a day and that their Fuel Altered and parts are up for sale. "The cost of putting a Nitro Fuel Altered together from scratch with no sponsors or financial support has been very tough and a great strain to our family", says Chris. "Sourcing good quality parts has been very hard and time consuming, as all drag racers are aware you buy the best parts you can afford (or not afford in some cases) and you keep amassing parts until the motor is built. We got to a point where we simply ran out of funds before finishing. We have to say a big thank you all those that have helped us along the way, too many to mention, however I must thank Bob Jarrett and John Spuffard have been amazing and a constant source of support and encouragement, also Dave Bryant and Kevin Kent have offered help with many others."
On behalf of themselves, family and friends, Donna, Franki and Georgi Giles asked us to wish a big Happy Birthday to UK Super Gas and Super Comp racer Jon Giles who is currently taking a year out from racing and is instead... er, racing. Have a great day Jon.
Editor's note: We have had to rush the news update today due to other commitments. There's going to be a mammoth coding session this evening so tune back tomorrow for Dragstalgia previews, SPRC Summernationals reviews and more, and please keep the news coming to email@example.com.
Attention 8.50 / 9.50 Bike racers.
7th July: Tony Smith of APIRA has been in touch with an important message for 8.50 Bike and 9.50 Bike racers contesting the UK National Championship rounds at Shakespeare County Raceway on 18th-19th July and 26th-27th September:
As agreed at the 2015 UK Riders' and Drivers' Meeting there is a diference in entry fees between APIRA Club Championship round in May and the forthcoming UK Championship rounds. The previous 8.50 Bike / 9.50 Bike round held at Yanks / Public Track Weekend was an APIRA Championship round only and the entry fee reflected this. However for the July and September UK National Championship rounds at Shakespeare County Raceway entry fees will be set at the published two-day fee of £125 for which each team receives four tickets and which also goes towards prize money and trophies. Entry for the three-day Open Sport Nationals in August remains at £135.
Please note that this will not affect additional rounds for National Association of Supertwins which is a non-National Championship class.
Ready to rock and roll!
7th July: The UK's newest Nostalgia Fuel Funny Car is ready for its on-track début at this weekend's Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway. Matt Glassup writes that it's all systems go for Bob Glassup's Bubblegum Capri-bodied FC after a successul fire-up:
Around a week ago the crew all shot down to Dave Gibbons' workshop to pull the car out and give it a fire up. Rob Loaring kindly joined us and was on hand for advice based upon his experience running with Tim Garlick and the Apache crew over the last couple of years. Thanks to a huge amount of hard work from Dave the fire-up was pretty much trouble-free: it fired up, warmed up and shut down without issue.
It was Bob's birthday on Friday and what better present than to collect the body shell which had been roughly four years in the making, all painted, tinned out and ready to rock and roll. Richard Walters worked hard and was extremely patient with us when, after the first paint job was completed, we decided to change the colour, so a big thank you to him for all his effort spinning the change around in time for us.
We are proud to announce the support of Lucas Oil and to be the first Nostalgia FC in the country running the Blue Thunder oil specifically designed for Nitro applications. Thanks to Les Downey and the team at Lucas for their continued support. Come and see us in the pits for more information on Lucas products.
There is a lot more to tell, but a lot of people to thank as this long journey nears completion and the début at Dragstalgia event. In no particular order, thanks must go to Cathy Glassup for her endless patience and support with the project, all the Xtreme family and usual crew Rich, Lee, Steve, Kim, Mark, Holley and Matti. Thanks to Dave Gibbons for joining the crew for its Nitro chapter and to Rob Loaring for putting us together and making it happen. Thanks to Paul and Sara Bland for their relentless efforts creating the body, to all at Andy Robinson Race Cars for sourcing all of our safety gear, Lenco and clutch parts among other things, to Todd at Racepak for helping us with the data logger and to Luke Robinson for his helping getting our lap top all set up for it. Thanks to Mike Crawford at Kleenfreaks for the cleaning product sponsorship, and to Paul Stubbings for his help and advice - we are looking forward to having Paul helping with clutch duties at the weekend. It's great to have crewman Mole joining us at the weekend to get busy with the bottom end. Thanks to Eurodragster.com as always and finally thanks to James Forster at Santa Pod.
Congratulations to Holley and Mark on getting married at the weekend, and sorry to relocate your honeymoon to the Santa Pod pits but we think that the exotic beach holidays are overrated!
The rematch is set.
7th July: Darren Prentice of Santa Pod Raceway wries that September's UK National Finals will host the mother of all grudge matches and the biggest re-match in Santa Pod's long history. Not on the black top, but the green top: the Racers v Marshals and Staff charity football match.
"Those who witnessed last year’s charity football match will have seen the outrageous cheating and poor sportsmanship by the racers' team", says Darren, "but somehow they won and held the trophy aloft to take the winners' spoils.
"So the challenge is set again with a minimum team of fifteen players on each side. The rules are simple: each team is to raise a minimum of £150 or £10 per player / member with a roll-on roll-off substitute basis. All money raised will be donated to Leukaemia and Lymphoma charity in the Name of Paula Marshall. The winning team will hold bragging rights for the next twelve months and of course will get to look after the prestigious Paula Marshall Cup.
"If you would like to be considered then for the racers' team then please contact either Sam Innes at firstname.lastname@example.org or Craig Wright at email@example.com, or for the marshals / staff team please contact myself at firstname.lastname@example.org or James Forster via his Facebook page.
"If anyone else would like to get involved in any way then please do not hesitate to get in touch with me - I will be glad to help if possible. We still have a few little surprises to announce for the football match so keep your eyes on Eurodragster.com for updates and team news."
Top Sportsman prize fund grows.
7th July: Paul Marston writes that entries are coming in thick and fast for Comanche Race Cars/ JS Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman at the Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway on 24th-26th July, as is the prize money:
There are just under three weeks to go and entry will stay open until virtually the day of the event, although if you enter on the day some discounts and benefits may not apply. We already have sixteen entries, a number which is hopefully set to double, in what is without question the richest payout, roughest, toughest, no holds barred, televised, no rules other than safety, Heads Up and Fast Bracket Sportsman Doorslammer event of the year.
Many thanks to our supporters and sponsors who this year really have stepped up to the plate and have contributed a considerable amount of cash to bolster the usual Comanche Race Cars / JS Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman purse and reward the Sportsman race teams competing in this series. In addition to the Heads Up purse of £1000 for the winner and £250 for the eunner-up posted by John Tebenham and the usual £500 win money from the Top Sportsman prize fund, Comanche Race Cars/JS Security Solutions UK Top Sportsman are pleased to announce a number one qualifier cash bonus of £350 courtesy of a Blue Chip investment company. This means that if someone qualified number one, won Heads-Up and went some rounds in the Fast Bracket then they could walk away with a cool two grand in cash!
Many many thanks to all of our marketing partners, sponsors, supporters, the fantastic UK Top Sportsman crew, and the Sportsman teams who bring this event to life. Keep those entries coming, and remember there has never been a repeat winner. But one thing's for sure, you have to be in it to win it. You wanna be the best, you have to beat the best to enjoy the richest payday ever in UK Top Sportsman history!
For your entry form please E-Mail email@example.com, call me on 07831 650230 (outside the UK +44 7831 650230) or search UK Top Sportsman on Facebook.
Anita: We lost, plain and simple.
7th July: Finnish Top Fuel Dragster racer Anita Mäkelä says that the weather has been pretty cool in Finland, but that somebody put the heater on just before the FHRA Nitro Nationals:
It was HOT! Heat is much better than rain, but the heat surprised us all. The Alastaro track didn´t take very much power, and our qualifying runs were modest 4.3s which gave us #3 spot. In the first round on Sunday we met Liam Jones. That good-looking car didn't disappear from my view until after the finish line. Liam 4.247 and me 4.248. It was a simple loss, I was slower than Liam and my car didn't run quickly enough. This is racing, sometimes you win, sometimes you lose and it was my turn to lose. All I can say is congrats to Liam and his great team. You were better, but I'm already looking forward meeting you again!
Every cloud has a silver lining: we didn't hurt any parts, and our car is ready for Germany. We know our car runs strongly. And we are counting on Jerry's word that the track will be good at Hockenheim. We will take all of our power with us, so see you at the NitrOlympX!
7th July: The organisers of Mini In The Park at Santa Pod Raceway on Sunday 16th August are seeking up to eight vehicles to make demonstration passes as a showcase for the sport. If you are interested then please get in touch with Darren Prentice at Santa Pod at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Web site updates.
7th Juky: Our good buddy Steve Moxley has a SPRC Summernationals bike-class review in the latest edition of the ACU on-line newsletter. You can check out Moxey's work at www.acu.org.uk.
Helen and Dave of Zeon TV, aka Quartermile High, have recently posted to YouTube reviews of Rounds 1 (Festival of Power) and 2 (Main Event) of the MSA British Pro Modified Championship. The reviews are well up to the usual excellent Zeon TV standard and can be checked out at youtu.be/YralfGIpzj8 and youtu.be/UR_rQwkDYpk respectively.
FHRA Nitro Nationals results.
6th July: Congratulations to the winners at the weekend's FHRA Nitro Nationals at Alastaro:
FIA Top Fuel Dragster: Micke Kågered 12.436/69.73 bye, Antti Horto no show
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car: Johan Lindberg 5.567/417.28 def. Johnny Oksa 5.896/392.84
FIA Pro Modified: Anders Nilsson 6.146/364.93 def. Bruno Bader 6.176/370.53
FIA Pro Stock: Richard Sundblom 6.727/330.98 def. Magnus Pettersson 6.787/331.20
EDRS Pro MC Top Fuel Bike: Sverre Dahl 9.041/187.30 bye, Jan Sturla Hegre no show
EDRS Pro MC Supertwin Top Fuel: Samu Kemppainen 6.754/326/95 def. Per Bengtsson 9.925/142.04
EDRS Pro MC Pro Stock Bike: Robert Karlsson 7.153/300.43 def. Elvira Karlsson 7.779/208.26
EDRS Pro MC Super Street Bike: Dag Wagenius 7.685/306.47 def. Björn Friström 7.788/305.76
Comp Eliminator: Aki Kulmala
Stock/Superstock: Tarmo Mikkola
Super Comp: Meri-Tuuli Sassi
Super Gas: Annica Larsson
Super Pro ET: Janne Söderqvist
Pro ET/Sportsman ET: Jarno Salonen
Super Pro Street: V Mäesepp
Outlaw: Kalle Mannerkoski
Top Street: Kalle Koivumäki
Real Street: K Mattfolk
Junior Dragster: Mico Ahonen
Funny Bike: Sami Kallio
Super Gas Bike: J Koskinen
Pro Harley Drags: Jukka Köykkä
Street Bike: M Erälähde
Junior Drag Bike: M Gratschew
You can find full results on the FHRA web site at www.fhra.fi and the same full results plus Patrik Jacobsson's Friday, Saturday and Sunday galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Dragstalgia bike preview.
6th July: Keith Lee, who has been busy working on the bike entry for this weekend's Dragstalgia, brings news of what is happening on two wheels at this year's event:
I am really looking forward to this event, as it marks the fortieth anniversary of the legendary Hobbit, the double Weslake of John Hobbs. The bike made its first Santa Pod appearance in July 1975, when it featured in the first ever side-by-side eight-second race in Europe. Virtually all of the old team will be attending Dragstalgia - and that includes the only other rider of the bike in competition, Jonny Munn. He is flying in from Australia not just to watch, but also to have a blast down the quarter on the bike after a thirty year gap! Incidentally, the current July issue of Classic Bike has a big feature on the Hobbit years.
Off track there are some real icons of the sport on show in the pits and the historic marquee. Among the highlights are the first appearance at Santa Pod for some thirty five years of the legendary Hogslayer Norton ridden by TC Christenson, and the stunning Pegasus double Norton, ridden by Ian Messenger and Derek Chinn. It was something I had hoped we might pull off, and with grateful thanks to the National Motorcycle Museum, and the efforts of Chris Illman and James Forster, this display will become a reality. There are a limited number of Pegasus t-shirts available at the event, so see Ian Messenger if you would like one. Well worth a close look in the pits will be a machine that dates back more than fifty years, and is the bike equivalent of a slingshot dragster. The brainchild of Clive Waye, the blown VW machine is unique and is currently being restored by Terry Homan who may well fire it up during the event. If you have never seen a picture of it, you are in for a big surprise!
On track will be a variety of historic Triumph, Norton and Vincent power - and Chris Illman and Colin Jefferies will once more be trying to coax the old Methamon sidecar outfit down the track at an indecently quick pace. Pip Higham will be out again on the Orient Express turbo Kawasaki, which débuted at last year's Dragstalgia. Running at Shakespeare County Raceway last month, Pip hit 8.22/166, which is only 0.05 seconds slower than the bike's best ever when raced by the late Steve Tong.
A very interesting and welcome addition to the ranks will be a Dutch entry, ridden by Jan Honee. Based on a Jawa single cylinder motor, and recently subjected to a big rebuild by Marius van de Zijden after a long layoff, this little 500 cc machine is the ultimate incarnation of a single, and should turn more than a few heads when it runs!
It is all shaping up for a great weekend of nostalgia racing.
The Perfect Dragstalgia bonus.
6th July: We are very pleased to announce that Cath and Tig Napier of the UK's Bad Habit Racing Pro ET team, who sponsor the Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award, have requested that we post the Award at this weekend's Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway. £75 is on offer for perfect performance.
This weekend's Eurodragster.com/Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award was increased to £75 after it went unclaimed at the SPRC Summernationals and will be paid in cash to the first person at this weekend's event to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available to all, whether in the organised classes or Run What You Brung, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £100 for Bug Jam; at Santa Pod Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for Bug Jam.
Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried, although we understand that this may not be possible on period-correct vehicles. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office from Friday morning or from the Eurodragster.com office in Race Control (entry via Spectator Bank side stairs only).
The 9.50 Biker in the sevens.
5th July: It's not every day that a 9.50 Bike racer hears the words "Do you fancy a go on a Super Street Bike?", but that's exactly what happened to Phil Pratt at the Peak Performance Test and Tune Day prior to the SPRC Summernationals. Phil's partner Sue Morris writes:
As Phil had already made a couple passes on Satan's Lady to ensure all was good with the newly fitted gearbox, he didn't need to be asked twice to get onboard the second Super Street Bike belonging to Garry Bowe. Under the expert tuition of Garry and Dave Bowe, along with tuning - or de-tuning in this case - guru Brad O'Connor, a couple of tyre-smoking half track launches were followed by rain and more than a little disappointment on Phils part that he didn't get the opportunity to make that once-in-a-lifetime full pass on a turbo bike.
That evening, Phil was made an offer he simply couldn't refuse, and it didn't take long to reach the decision "Nuts to the points, let's do this!". So it was Garry's Hayabusa which rolled into scrutineering on Saturday morning. Hastily named after another of the WWII Pod-based B-17s, Snake Hips took to the runway for qualifying in 9.50 Bike, complete with For Sale emblazoned down her sides.
More familiarisation passes, along with chassis mods to overcome Phil's weight issue (lack of it), meant that by eliminations on Sunday confidence was high that Phil would lose in the first round! True to everyone's expectations that first full pass produced an 8.16/170.46 which had the team jumping for joy at being First Round Fodder. Phil was so close to the seven which Garry and Brad knew was in the bike at its de-tuned setting, Garry having previously run a 7.47 at 191 mph at full power. Just too close... if only Phil could get one more full pass in.
As plans were being made to get the bike to another meeting, word came that a window of opportunity had opened but that "We need you in the pairing lanes in ten minutes"! After a mad dash the team made it, and even had a few minutes to get Phil's head together thanks to a dribble of fluid on the startline - and it's not often anyone can say they are grateful for that!
It was late in the day when Phil's Mum Pat pushed the big bike into the water box. Under the watchful eyes of Dave and Brad, Garry missing out due to preparing for his appearance in the Super Street Bike final, Phil rolled to the startline - and, to the visible delight of everyone, 7.91 seconds later he crossed the finish line at 172.38 mph on only his second full pass on an SSB. Job done!
Phil, Suze and Pat would like to say a massive Thank You to Garry, Dave, Di and Brad for this amazing opportunity, and for their support and encouragement. It couldn't have been easy running two bikes from the same stable, especially with L plates on one! The smile Phil was wearing all weekend is still there and will take a very long time to fade!
Unfortunately the bike is a little out of reach for Team PBM's tiny budget so is still for sale, but will probably be snapped up very quickly. So if you're interested you need to contact Garry by E-Mail at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org before it's too late.
Learning to fly.
5th July: Wild Child Super Comp team owner and driver Andy Williams offered team member Tom Margesson the keys to the dragster at last weekend's SPRC Summernationals and Tom writes that the answer was obvious:
After the Main Event we had some ideas of what I needed to change to better myself in the dragster. I am comfortable in the car but still learning but I running in a class full of experience, sometimes I have to stop being hard on myself as I've got three race meetings under my belt!
Qualifying runs on Saturday were lovely, if breaking out was the target. Consistency was good with both breakouts being 8.83s and the timing tickets being near-on identical. In the third qualifier I had one more chance, we ran the car safe for this run knowing it would run the right side and it did. 8.95 on the board putting us in number ten spot. Not perfect, but these things take time and we're snipping away at more data every run with the new set-up.
After the last round I worked out the ladder but waited for the official call and yep, in round one of eliminations I would meet a lad who has been in the class for nearly as long as I can remember, Collin Morrice. No one can deny the guy's good, Collin pulls good reactions and is a regular trophy taker in Super Comp or Gas. We shook hands before the race and said it was a long time coming for us to race. I had to stay cool, I had learned this from the other rounds in the year, just run your own race. Collin tree'd me off the line, a 0.0042 to a 0.0127 but I ran 9.01 to his 9.02 and fortunately got to the finish first. There was no way I could see the win light on the wall past the finish line, so I still wasn't sure, did I break out? Did Collin run bang on the number with a wicked reaction time? I didn't know I was met by Amy my crew member and girlfriend at the timing office with a big smile on her face handing me the timing ticket! I had done it, my first ever round win in a race meeting, waaahooooo absolutely buzzing. The team were over the moon and my dad was already getting the car ready for the next run as normal before I had even got out! Collin was waiting nearby and we talked the race through, it was a good run and again another learning curve. My target was complete, no red light in round one, and took the win.
This then meant I was faced with another experienced racer in round two, Martin Curbishley. Unfortunately I pulled a red in round two so Martin took the win. I know what I did which caused the red and I'm still cursing now but red lights happen and you've got to take them on the chin. I've done it twice in two meetings now and as a driver it does make me feel I've let the team down after the hard work we all put in. Well done to Martin though, he was bang on the numbers in that race with a 8.901, man that's good.
In this class it is super hard work to run the numbers of these guys. Its a regular thing now that the top five are in the 8.90s, we will get there with this set-up soon I'm sure, and I can't wait.
A lot of people ask me why I am driving the dragster a lot instead of Andy and it is still a bit of a mad thing for me to get my head round so I probably never come up with a straight answer, but Andy is still driving at the Shakespeare County events and any Santa Pod events he fancies. It's a big luxury for me and I cannot take it for granted, I'm riding the wave at the moment and loving it. Now its back to hard work, long hours to earn the money that these things cost to run. I hope to be back out at the European Finals, time will tell.
A big thanks to the crew, things wouldn't be the way they are without them: Andy and Maggie, my Dad Pete, Amy, and Sandy who is returning soon after a few meetings away due to other commitments. Thanks for the welcome and continued support from the other racers too. Super Comp is a great class, come and join in.
5th July: Santa Pod Racers Club asked videographer Barny to film the SPRC Summernationals in a similar manner to his short film of the Main Event. The result is now on-line at youtu.be/8ianxqn69uc. "It's easy to forget what we all do in the world of Sportsman racing and just how spectacular it is", says Ian Marshall. "Just watching the video brings that all back and makes you realise what we have. A big thank you must go to Barny for capturing the spirit and spectacle of the best of European Sportsman drag racing and to all of the racers, crews, marshals, staff and of course all of Eurodragster.com for making it what you will see in the video." We've checked out the video and it's nothing short of fantastic so don't miss it.
We have cleared the backlog of classified advertisements on our Jeff Bull Race Engines-sponsored Swap Meet. If you have recently sent an ad and it is not on the Swap Meet then please re-send. Also don't forget that we willingly give access to the self-posting facility, just E-Mail and ask for the link; after a bad experience with robots we can't leave the self-post link on the site.
Gasser Circus Round 2 review.
5th July: Nervous Nick has been in touch with a review of the spectaular Gasser Circus' second round, which took place at the NSRA Nostalgia Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway:
On Friday evening the Gasser Circus had thirteen cars on the property and all lined up and preparing for qualifying on Saturday. Unfortunately, the weather had different ideas, and even though the Gassers made it into the fire up road on two occasions, both were curtailed by rain showers that swept across the drag strip and shutdown area. With no qualifying on Saturday, all cars automatically qualified, but the ladder needed populating. Cars' names were written onto slips of paper and folded. A passing young lady was then asked to select them one at a time, and the ladder was soon set, with Round 1 winner Sean Milson and his Ain’t Misbehavin Morris Van garnering the number one qualifying spot. This was important as it afforded him a bye in round one of eliminations.
Sean had no intention of taking it easy despite the other lane being empty, dialling in with a 10.64, however he was about to set possibly one of the most outstanding tickets of the season, with a mind bending 34.57 seconds at 135 mph! The reason behind this ticket appeared to be a stall as he launched, which set the clock in motion, with start line crew jumping into action as they saw a small amount of flame, luckily no extinguishers were used and as Sean refired his new stroked 347 Ford they stood aside and he flew off down the strip. The next pairing had a West Country feel about it as the Barnett & Welch '41 Willys Coupe took on the Denning & Pike Honky Tonkin 2 Nova. It seemed the lack of Saturday running had an effect on both drivers, as they both hit the go pedal before the green had chance of flickering to life, with the first or worst rule signalling elimination for the Willys Coupe. Ray Irish was back out in his Willys Pick-up, with Ray getting the handle on his new blown motor, but like the earlier pairing Ray cut the light too fine putting a cherry on in his lane handing the win to Katie Booth piloting the Mighty Mouse Pop. Steve Dixon had spent much of Round 1 getting acquainted with staging and launching and he was keen to put this knowledge to good use, but he was up against one of the toughest competitors in the Gasser Circus, due to his consistency, two time Champion Ray Turner. But as the pairing lane officials signalled Ray to fire Green Onions' engine, it turned over but there was not the slightest hint of it firing. As Steve burnt out and edged up to the lights, Ray's '55 looked forlorn as it was pushed through the hole in the wall. Steve ran a 12.20 on a 12.10 dial and progressed to the next round. Frustratingly for Ray, his 55 fired back into life once back at his pit! It was good to see Tim Holmes back with his Powerwagon Dodge Pickup as he was missing in action at Gary’s Picnic, and he knew he would have to be on the money as he took on Martyn Hallam in his Whiplash Willys Coupe. Martyn also meant business, as he had his wheelie bars on and they were soon earning their living, as he ran an 11.00 on a 10.85, beating Tim who ran a slowing 12.01 on a 10.96 dial in. The next pairing had an inspiring back story, as Gasser Circus Rookie Merv Barnett in his Psychedelic Relic Pop had grenaded his blown 327 Chevy at his first event Gary’s Picnic, but in true racer style, had spent the intervening weeks sourcing parts and building a new 327. This was the eliminations of the recently retired as Merv took on Kev Strevett in his Goldrush Ford, with Kev dialling in 12.00 but Merv taking the win with a 11.80 run. Now that's one way of running in a new engine! The final pairing had another Gasser Circus rookie Chris Hill in his '56 Chevy Gas Guzzler, preparing to take on Brian Gibson in his Identity Crisis Dodge, with Brian coming out victorious running 11.95 on his 11.70 dial in.
The quarter final pairings were set, and Ain’t Misbehavin went to the line against Honky Tonkin 2 and despite the latter running a superb 9.35, Ain’t Misbehavin took the win with a 10.64 on a 10.30. Next pair up had Steve Dixon in his High Roller, taking on Katie Booth who had problems with the line lock, but this did not put her off as he stormed through the lights to take the win with a 10.74 on a 10.62. Whiplash in the capable hands of Martyn Hallam had a bye to the semi-final, but it’s not in Martyn’s nature to take it easy, and he ripped off a 10.87 on a 10.81 dial in! In the other quarter final the Pop of Merv Barnett took on Brian Gibson’s Dodge and beat him with a stout 11.30 on an 11.30 dial in.
With Katie Booth and Merv Barnett on opposite sides of the ladder, there was a distinct possibility of an all Ford Pop final, however the moment Katie left the line we knew that was no longer a possibility as she uncharacteristically left a cherry on the tree! It soon became clear this was not a day for Ford Pops as the '33 Willys Whiplash booked its place in the final with a very close, side by side fight to edge the win over the Psychedelic Relic of Merv.
As the finalists edged ever closer to the end of the fire up road, tension was building: could Martyn take a round win, or could Sean make it back to back victories? Martyn fired his 383 Chevy and pulled forward to the line marking the end of the fire up road, the gap between him and Sean clearly visible, as was the surge of activity around Sean's Morris Van, as his motor failed to start! As crew looked into the engine bay, the sound of the starter motor screeching, with no engagement was heard again and again. Martyn was given the signal to pull round and prepare to burn out, whilst Sean’s van still lay dormant at the end of the fire up road. As the officials moved forward to say to his crew he had seconds left to get it started or he was out, the starter engaged and fired the Ford engine into life. A few quick rasps of the throttle and Sean was on his way to burn out alongside Martyn. The Gassers edged to the line, with Sean electing to dial in at 10.60 and Martyn at 10.85 the crowds watching knew these Gassers would leave virtually at the same time. Both drivers knew this was not a time to break out, but it was a breakout which would at the end of the quarter mile decide this race, and unfortunately for Martyn this would befall him as he cut the lights at 10.80. Sean in the other lane ran through in a storming 10.61, ensuring he took back to back victories, further securing his lead in the Championship.
This was a big weekend with new Personal Bests being set all over the place, these included Tim Holmes in Powerwagon, Steve Dixon in High Roller, Martyn Hallam in Whiplash, Nick Barnett and Ryan Welch in their Willys Coupe, Katie Booth in The Mighty Mouse, Merv Barnett in Psychedelic Relic, Kev Strevett in Goldrush and last but not least Sean Milsom in Ain’t Misbehavin. If ever evidence was needed that the Gasser Circus racers are developing their cars and getting ever faster, then this is it. Talking of speed Lee Pike and Jerry Denning picked up the trophy for the Fastest Gasser with their very impressive 9.35/151.
The Gasser Circus were also delighted to welcome on board new sponsor Speedking and the prizes and gift certificates they supplied were most welcome and a great bonus for the Gasser Circus. They join the NSRA and Mechanix Limited, whose reaction time prize money rolls over to Round 3 at Dragstalgia.
The weekend was a blast, a fitting tribute to the late and sorely-missed Roger Butterworth and Mel McClaine.
Euro Top Gas Round 3 review.
5th July: Herman Jolink writes that the third round of this year's Euro Top Gas Series took place over the eighth mile at Malmö Raceway on 26th-28th June:
After 950 kilometres Dragracing Team Herman Jolink was at Malmö Raceway, the last time the team was there was in 2008. There was a very good track, prepared by Lee Child from Great Britain, a lot of very fast cars but not so many bikes.
We had the first two qualifying rounds on Friday night, no running on Saturday because all day it kept raining enough to wet the track. But there was now a track dryer. We had two qualifying rounds on Sunday. Qualifying:
Round 1: Schack 4.812-219 kmh beat 6.786-169 kmh; Van Schie 5.334-206 kmh beat Menzi 5.372-186 kmh Menzi with a 0.184 red light; Andersen 7.363-113 kmh with a bye run after Malmberg broke; Jolink 5.306-205 kmh beat Jensen 7.884-85 kmh primary belt broke.
Semi final: Schack 5.106-212 kmh beat van Schie who crossed the centre line; Jolink 5.307-207 kmh beat Andersen 5.528-202 kmh.
Final: Herman Jolink Netherlands on Ducati 1198 RS 5.301-209.10 kmh bye run, Frederik Schack Denmark on 2622 V-Twin Schack broke a valve spring in the semi final.
Super Twin Top Gas Championship after three rounds:
7th-9th August: NitrOlympX, Hockenheim, Germany
28th-30th August: Mosten Race Days eighth-mile sprint, Orsted, Denmark
11th-13th September: Winter Nationals, Malmö, Sweden
4th July: Many thanks to Yvonne Tramm and our own Simon for passing us the post-SPRC Summernationals points standings in the UK National Drag Racing Championships and Santa Pod Racers Club Championships. You can check out the points on our OCS Paint-sponsored Points Standings page by clicking here or by clicking on the OCS Paint Points Standings link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. If you don't see the updated points when you load a class' page then please do Ctrl and R before assuming we got it wrong.
We have two birthdays today. First up, a Happy Birthday and hugs to Santa Pod Racers Club official Kathy Taylor. Have a lovely day Kathy. Happy Birthday also to street-legal Pro Modified racer and former Eurodragster.com Blogger Andy Frost. Have a great day Frosty.
We would also like to wish all of our friends and readers in the USA a Happy 4th July. Have a great day guys.
Event entry update.
3rd July: Ian Marshall of Santa Pod Racers Club has been in touch to let us know that the entry deadline is now Wednesday 8th July for the MSA British Pro Modified round at the Mopar EuroNats at Santa Pod Raceway on 24th-26th July. You can download the official entry form from the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. You can check out Version 1 of the official entry list by clicking here.
Ålund ready to roll.
3rd July: It's time to round off the north-eastern swing of the 2015 FIA European Drag Racing Championships with the third race of the series, the 2015 FHRA Nitro Nationals at the Alastaro Motopark. The Jimmy Ålund Pro Stock Racing team is all set up, anxious to get racing again after two solid races so far this year.
Jimmy is looking for his tenth FIA Pro Stock Championship and currently leads the 2015 FIA Pro Stock series. It's been a hallmark season so far. Two races, two number one qualifying positions, one event win and four new European records. Among the new records is a fantastic speed record of 215.09 mph (346.15 kmh). Only three other drivers in the world have run speeds over 215 mph in competition with an NHRA-legal Pro Stock car.
"It feels real good to run that strongly in the first two races of the season", says Jimmy, "unlike last year we have now run well in both qualifying and in eliminations. This will be a great weekend for racing. The weather is good, we have a very strong line up of cars, and we are very anxious to get started. Michael Malmgren and his team did a better job than us at Alastaro last year and we got beaten in the finals. We're looking to improve this year."
3rd July: Good luck and stay safe to ex-pat-UK Top Alcohol Dragster racer Michael Manners of Eurodragster.com sponsor Cosmo Residences who is competing at this weekend's Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, as is Sweden's Ulf Leanders in Top Alcohol Funny Car. Qualifying commences today and you will be able to stay in touch with Mike's and Ulf's progress on the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com.
Close of play today (Friday) is the deadline for advance tickets to next week's Dragstalgia at Santa Pod Raceway. You can order your tickets at www.santapod.com or call Santa Pod on 01234 782828 (outside the UK +44 1234 782828).
Editor's note: We have a small backlog of news with which we shall catch up on tomorrow's update. Please keep the news coming to email@example.com.
Event entry update.
2nd July: Entry forms are available for the Hillingdon Speed and Spares APIRA Open Sport Nationals, a round of the UK National and ACU UK Drag Bike Championships as well as a round for a number of other series, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th-31st August. Racers competing in ET and Super classes and Lucas Oil Junior Dragster are reminded to pay particular attention to revisions in the Supplementary Regulations and Indemnity notices. You can download entry forms from the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.
Entry is still open for the UK National and APIRA Club Championship rounds of 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike and NAST Supertwins which will be hosted at Shakespeare County Raceway's Public Track Day and Kawasaki Triples Euro Weekend on 18th-19th July. Entry closes on Wednesday 15th July; again you can download entry forms from the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.
13:00 Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us the final version of the official entry list for Bug Jam, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on Friday-Sunday 17th-19th July (race days Saturday and Sunday) and which is a VWDRC Championship round for VW Pro and VW Sportsman, a UK National Championship round for Sportsman ET and Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator, a round of the European Nitro Funny Car Series, a Championship round for Outlaw Anglia, and a non-points round for Lucas Oil Junior Dragster. You can check out the Bug Jam entry list by clicking here.
2nd July: We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to Podington Pea Diana Macrae. Have a lovely day DD.
Last call for Dragstalgia.
1st July: James Forster of Santa Pod Raceway has been in touch to remind racers planning on running in any of the Invitational classes at next week's Dragstalgia that 17:00 UK this Friday (3rd) is the deadline for entry.
"The RWYB spaces are long gone", says James, "but at time of writing there are still a few notable absences from the invited classes. So if you'd like to come along then please pick up the phone and speak to Phil or myself on 01234 782828."
Drachten Pro entry still open.
1st July: Margot Schmidt says that all are invited to the Dutch Pro event at Drachten Drag Strip on 10th-12th July.
"Several European teams have already entered, from countries including the United Kingdom, Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Switzerland and more", says Margot. "It's going to be a spectacle!"
Entry is €150 which includes driver registration, five crew passes, parking, showers, toilets, electricity and camp site on location. Junior drag racers enter free and this includes driver registration, one crew pass, parking, showers, toilets, electricity and camp site on location.
You can still enter the event at www.quartermile.nl/event-info/inschrijven-10-11-12-juli-2015.
1st July: The UK's Paul Watson took the Super Comp win at the SPRC Summernationals with a new set-up in his Farm Fresh Speed Shop-sponsored Camaro. Paul writes:
We tested on Friday opening with a 9.0, not quite what we hoped for but we got closer with the next setting, 8.894 then the same again. We knew we were closing in but not qualified right side so so we threw in an 8.94 qualifying ninth.
In the first round I met former Champion Paul Brown. Good reactions for both of us, he went way ahead but I knew my car was set on the money and I knew Paul would dump me on the line so a shut off netted an 8.902, a win but phew it was close. Next was Paul Letchford, I raced him in Super Gas many times years back and he's a tough cookie. Unfortunatly he redlit handing me the win, still the car was on form running 8.93.
In the semis I met nemesis Dave Day whom I should have raced a couple of times last year but rain stopped play. We had a score to settle and I knew you can't take Dave lightly as he has lightning reactions and a consistent car. We both knew it would be close. I pulled an 0.017 light to Dave's 0.019 and took the win. To say it was close at the top was an understatement, a fantastic Super Comp race. Could it get much better?
The final round was against Pete Creswell, again from my Super Gas days. Does it get any tougher? Against the odds I pulled a 0.002 light to take the win with an 8.91. What a fantastic finish, to say I'm over the moon is an understatement. Thank you to all those who support me: Gary Springford at Drag Race Engineering, Farm Fresh Speed Shop, Image Worx, and not least my wonderful partner Pixie. Without her I could never do what I do. The car will be up for sale at the end of the season so please get in touch if you are interested.
1st July: Dick Koster of Eurodragster.com sponsor Post & Dros will be at Alastaro this weekend to offer Racepak factory support and spare parts for Racepak, MSD and Clevite bearings. In addition Post & Dros are pleased to offer a Dell laptop pre-loaded with Racepak software to make it easier than ever to get the most out of your Racepak system. The new Dell Inspiron 15" laptop features Windows 8.1, 500GB hard drive, 4GB RAM, and is pre-loaded with Racepak DataLink II software and configuration file. Plug-and-play ready with no user set-up needed to connect to your Racepak datalogging system. It's the perfect solution for racers who want a dedicated computer for their race vehicles, eliminating the hassle of taking your home computer to the race track. It’s also a great choice for racers who need to upgrade to a new computer. The laptop is part number 890-CP-DELL1 and comes in at €495. More information at www.post-en-dros.nl.
Andy Clifford asked us to congratulate SPRC Summernationals Wild Bunch winners Ruth and Terry Clifford. "It's been a while since the Ratcatcher Resurrected had a win but we came close at Easter losing out to Phil James in the final", says Andy. "We found some real consistency this weekend and the bonus of a new PB of 8.92! On Saturday we had some fantastic side-by-side qualifying runs with Sarah Howells in Black Pig Too which made for a great spectacle so a successful weekend all round. Great track, so thanks to Ian and all the track crew and all Santa Pod staff. Can’t wait for Dragstalgia in a couple of weeks and hopefully a bumper Wild Bunch field!
Today (Wednesday) is the first anniversary of the passing of Eurodragster.com staff member Ed O'Connell. A full English breakfast, fish and chips, pizza, lobster... take your pick and have one in tribute to our fondly-remembered and terribly-missed friend and colleague.
We were very pleased to hear that SPRC marshal Caroline Boncey and goddaughter Chloe successfully completed the ten-mile Midnight Walk for St Francis' Hospice in three and a quarter hours. "I have aching legs and feet still, as I think I walked that amount in the pits on Saturday!", says Oscar. "I wanted to raise £300, and the final count this morning is £645. I am so touched by all the drivers, crews and marshals who sponsored me and wished me luck; it shows how great our drag racing family is. I am one very, very happy Oscar."
Many thanks to Andy Marrs of TSI Timers Europe for forwarding us the official SPRC Summernationals timing data. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
Thanks also to Andy Marrs for forwarding us a new table of UK Bests now including the ACU Super Street Bike ET record set by Garry Bowe at the SPRC Summernationals. You can check out the records sheet by clicking here or by clicking on the European Bests link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
School's a drag.
1st July: Jerry Cookson writes that members of Shakespeare County Raceway went back to school last Saturday afternoon:
This was no ordinary classroom session stuck behind a boring desk pretending to listen to a boring teacher! No sir. This was for the Willows C of E Primary School Summer Fete in Stratford Upon Avon. From the moment the gates opened we were swamped with kids and parents wanting to know more about the cars and the Junior Drag Bike which we had on display courtesy of Destiny’s Angel and Firefighter Racing.
We even laid on a Reaction Time competition to win tickets for the Open Sport Nationals. But little did we think that a 0.298 R/T would be beaten by 0.029, a 0.022 and a 0.001. Wow! Who'da thunk it? We also had lots of giveaways, lanyards and key rings, courtesy of Lucas Oil as well as some 2015 UK Drag Racing calendars which the kids loved.
Shakespeare County would like to thank Sherron Guise and all the teachers and parents for making us feel welcome and, for giving up their Saturday to help promote drag racing to what we hope will be our racers of the future, Angie Woods, Dave Rowland, Josh Barlow, George Jackson, Andrew Willcox, Kim and Richard Willcox and I guess me! We’re already thinking about what we can do next year which might involve lines. I must go 100% faster, I must go 100% faster...
This weekend we're off to Stow to celebrate American Independence Day at the Cotswold Festival.
Web site updates.
1st July: Eurodragster.com News Editor Tog has updated his SmugMug site with his full set of pictures from Friday's Peak Performance Test and Tune Day at Santa Pod Raceway. You can check out Tog's shots at eurodragster.smugmug.com.