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Svenssons updating.
31st December: Peter and Soren Svensson of Sweden's Team Kendall Racing Top Fuel Bike team have been in touch with a promised update on the work underway on their bike to make it competitive for the 2009 FIM/UEM European Top Fuel Bike Championship. Being worked on right now are:
  • New longer wheelie bars, to stabilise high speed wheelies

  • Further changes within the fuel system, to allow increased flow

  • Update of the clutch management system, to allow increased pressure in the system

  • New billet pistons with coating from our sponsor Cemecon A/S, to allow a higher combustion pressure
"We would like to take the opportunity to thank Charlie Karling/Uddeholm Tooling for supplying us with the material for our new pistons (Alumec)", say Peter and Soren. "We would also like to take the opportunity to thank all of our families, team members, friends, sponsors, competitors, track staff, race organisers, FIM/UEM officials and the staff at Eurodragster.com for your help and support during 2008, and we wish all of you a great start to 2009."
©Eurodragster.com
Swift snippets.
31st December: Many thanks to Wayne Dupuy for passing on a couple of shots of Eurodragster.com News sponsor Urs Erbacher's new Top Fuel Dragster which is coming together nicely in the USA (click on picture for large version). "We are getting close to testing between 20th and 28th January depending upon the weather", says Wayne. "Our team could use some help in 2009. There are good places on the car for good sponsors: some are taken and some are open. For details contact Urs, Oyvind Dahl or myself."

Autosport International takes place at Birmingham's NEC next week, with the public days on Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th. Santa Pod Raceway will as usual be exhibiting with a display in a much improved position in Hall 9 (stand 9310), as well as a stand in the Pistonheads Show in Hall 18 (stand 18430). In addition Andy Carter will be launching his book King of Europe on the Saturday. Racers please note that if your vehicle is appearing then don't assume that someone else will tell us because with the exception of Santa Pod they never do; please drop us a line at news@eurodragster.com so that we can let your fans know and so that we can come and visit you at the Show. You can find out more about Autosport International at www.autosport-international.com.
©Eurodragster.com
A couple of special birthday announcements. First up is Pete Kellett of Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor B&B Specialist Automotive and Leisure Services who was 50 yesterday (Tuesday). Leah Kellett asked us to be sure to say that Dolly D, Kim and Joe said Happy Birthday. Hope you had a great day, Pete. We must also say Happy 18th Birthday for today to drag racing and Eurodragster.com fan Sean Bowe. Have a good one Sean.

We have now posted the answers to our Christmas Quiz which featured forty pairs of eyes in need of identification. From postings on a couple of forums it certainly looks like we gave you something to think about (Bob Jarrett indeed - Ed). You can check out the answers by clicking here.

Ian Turburville is holding a clearout of Simpson stock at bargain prices. "If it's not on the list, I don't have it", says Turbo. "Due to the falling value of the pound against the dollar and increasing US prices all 2009 stock will be substantially more expensive of course. Prices include tax but not shipping". Click here to see what's on offer (Word format).

Our readers in Sweden might be interested, or may be nervous, to read that the new issue of Bilsport magazine features a half-page Q&A with Eurodragster.com News Editor Tog, recently carried out by our good friend and very good photojournalist Stefan Boman. If you want to know the answers to all kinds of personal questions, plus Tog's theory on the lack of ugly women in Sweden, then Mr Eurodragster can be found on page 112 of edition 09/01-2.


Web site updates.
31st December: Our good buddy Anders Envall has alerted us to the YouTube presence of an hour-long documentary about drag racing at Sweden's Mantorp Park. Bostic himself was the director of the 1991 programme, which is available in six parts starting at www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERQUgxjCui0.
©Eurodragster.com
The 193rd photo page has just been added to Alan Currans' excellent Acceleration Archive. The update contains forty pictures taken at Santa Pod Raceway in 2008. "I hope these pictures will help lift the terrible symptoms of SADRS (Seasonally Affected Drag Racing Syndrome), says Alan, "but those of a nervous disposition had better avoid the short section dealing with the European Finals". The new page can be accessed via the What's New link at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk. "That's all from the Archive for 2008 and I hope you all have a Happy New Year", adds Alan. Here's wishing the same to you Alan and indeed Tog, Simon, Roger and Kirstie would like to wish all of our readers a very happy, healthy and prosperous 2009.


SPRC Perpetual Awards week 6.
28th December: Once again Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are teaming up to give Eurodragster.com readers the chance of input to the
SPRC Perpetual Awards, which will be presented at the joint APIRA/SPRC Dinner Dance and Trophy presentation on Saturday 7th February 2009.

For seven of the eight 2008 season awards, a shortlist has been decided upon for which votes can be submitted by E-Mail. There are eight awards in all: this week's category is the Paul Giddings Memorial Trophy. Nominations are also being accepted for the Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy. The votes of Eurodragster.com readers will be taken into consideration when the SPRC Committee decides upon the winners.

The Paul Giddings Memorial Trophy is a bike fraternity-only award is named for late racer Paul Giddings, and is presented for overcoming adversity. Nominees have typically had to endure personal problems, severe or prolonged mechanical trouble, an accident or other such woes, but have faced those problems head-on and come out on top.

Steve French, Funny Bike
Go to vote

Gary Jones, Funny Bike
Go to vote

Paul King, Pro Stock Bike
Go to vote

Rene Van Den Berg, Top Fuel Bike
Go to vote

To place your vote, go to the official SPRC Perpetual Awards page which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the SPRC Perpetual Awards vote link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page.
©Eurodragster.com
The Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy, for which votes are also now being taken, was first awarded to Santa Pod Raceway's late Chief Marshal, Alex Brachtvogel, in 2001 to mark his outstanding contribution to Santa Pod Raceway and the sport as a whole. After Alex's death the trophy was named in his memory and continues to be awarded for contribution to drag racing. There is no shortlist for the Alex Brachtvogel award. Nominations are invited from Eurodragster.com readers for racers, race officials, track and safety crews, club officials, media, or anyone else who has contributed to the sport. Last year the trophy was awarded to SPRC Chief Starter Ian Marshall. Again see the official web page for more details or E-Mail your nomination to sprc.awards.2008@btinternet.com specifying SPRC Alex Brachtvogel Trophy nomination as the subject and your nomination in the body of the E-Mail.

Voting is per category, so if you vote for the Paul Giddings Memorial Trophy today then you will be able to vote for next week's category, which is the Obsession Motorsports Sportsman of the Year Trophy, and so on.

For each of the Awards, one vote per E-Mail address per nominee will be accepted: multiple votes for the same nominee from the same E-Mail address will all be disqualified. And every year we say this, but every year someone tries it on and it has already been attempted this year: please note that blatant attempts at organising mass votes - for example asking workmates or forum members to vote en masse - are easily identified and all such votes will be disallowed as they have been in previous years. Concerted attempts at vote-rigging will result in the nominee being removed from the shortlist.


Swift snippets.
28th December: UK Top Methanol Dragster racer Lindsay Deuchar has admitted ownership of the dragster in Wednesday's spy picture. "I have been looking to return for about twelve months now", says Lindsay. "I bought the dragster in September. It has all the right up-to-date parts and should be competitive once we get it dialled in. I would like to be out at Easter but that is starting to look very unlikely - the car will be ready but the truck and trailer are taking a lot more time than I bargained for, so the Main Event is probably more achievable and then we will see how things go from there."
©Eurodragster.com
France's Duck Team have been in touch to let us know that the 2009 Drag Power Show has moved from the usual Chambley to Mirecourt where there, they tell us, there will be glue and traction. The 2009 Drag Power Show takes place on 1st-3rd May and you can find out more at www.duckteam.fr.

If you have already watched the drag racing DVDs which Santa brought you then Mikael Gloudemans tells us that his excellent webcam coverage of this year's Drachten Finals is being replayed daily at www.ziejeme.nu/explosion and www.doyousee.me/explosion. The broadcasts will continue at least until New Year's Day.


McCoy's All-In Duster deal.
28th December: Andy McCoy Race Cars (AMRC) has reached an agreement with Denmark's Henrik Pedersen to make the popular 1970 Plymouth Duster body available for drag racers in Europe exclusively through Pedersen's All-In Racecars. Specialising in the fabrication of high-performance Pro Mod and Top Sportsman drag racing components from chassis to competition-ready vehicles, Andy McCoy Race Cars designed the nostalgic-looking race car body that made its competition début in September.

"We have received a tremendous amount of interest in the Duster since its release, not only here, but abroad", McCoy said. "We're excited to have a presence in Europe and we are happy to team up with Henrik because of his reputation for excellent workmanship."

McCoy and his team completed their first Duster-bodied race car this fall for ADRL campaigner Dennis Radford. Similar cars are now in the works for American racers Paul Halstead, Tim Branson and James Litton.

In addition to race-ready cars, Andy McCoy Race Cars sells components such as bodies, wings, seats, floors, and motor belly pans. They are currently sourcing all of the bodies and components they have designed from Kirkman Composites. "We are real happy with the high quality of work we are getting from Kirkman", McCoy says.

All-In Racecars is based in Copenhagen, Denmark and supplies race chassis and racing components to competitors all over Europe. More information on Andy McCoy Race Cars is available at www.andymccoyracecars.com, while more information about All-In Racecars is available at www.all-inracecars.com.
©Eurodragster.com

Web site updates.
28th December: Dominic Romney has produced an E-Book of his favourite shots from the 2008 season. Dom's book is in PDF format and comes in at over 5 Mb but is worth the short wait to download. You can get the E-Book at photomakers.blogspot.com.
©Eurodragster.com

Straight talk from Carey.
24th December: UK Top Fuel Bike racer Steve Carey finished runner-up in the 2008 ACU UK Top Fuel Bike Championship, his fourth runner-up spot in five years - and when he was not runner up, in 2006, he won the title. Steve has been in touch to thank everyone who has supported and helped the Purple Princess 2 team over the years and to explain what the team will be doing about the bike's love of finishing in a different lane to that in which it started:

It's not been an easy bike to ride, and it has produced some very interesting rides, not all I would want to repeat! In the time we have had the bike, we have made many changes. At the end of last season we cut off the front of the frame and replaced it with the steering head angle changed to 45 degrees from 35 degrees, extra strengtening was added to the frame, and a side drive back wheel added. The bike sat lower and all this helped to cure the barrell rolling and fishtailing down the track. Although that was cured, the bike now had a tendency to cross lanes, mainly going to the right. We have been very fortunate now to have had some thoughts and advice from Frank Brachtvogel and Pete Davies as to how to cure the tendency to go right. On their advice we pumped the back tyre up hard, and set the back wheel on a four inch wide block under the centre of the rear tyre. Although the bike would sit level on the ground with the tyre at normal pressure, to balance it on the block, it needed twenty pounds of weight on one side to balance the bike.

Another problem we identified is in the design of the fuel tank. Ours was very wide, and flat. With twenty litres of fuel in the tank, there was still a three to four inch gap above the fuel. Without any front to rear baffles in the tank, as soon as the tank moved from horizontal all the fuel would move from one side to the other, and this probably has the most effect on making the bike move about.
©Eurodragster.com
Pete Davies very kindly allowed us to put the frame onto his frame jig. The frame is straight, and it allowed us to take some measurements to ensure that the rear wheel is dead central to the front now.

So we will be making a new fuel tank, adding some bracing to the side of the frame which will join onto the engine plates, adding a bit of extra strengthening to the rear of the frame, checking that the seat on the bodywork is central to the bike and altering that if it is off centre, along with altering the bodywork to clear a larger tyre, and then building the bike back up, so that when the back wheel is supported in the centre, the bike is balanced. Once all that is done, hopefully we'll only be doing a quarter of a mile and not going the long way down the track.

Earlier on in the year, we did a talk for the Institute of the Motor Industry at Shoreham Airport with Darren Prentice, Steph and Dave Milam, Gary Jones, and Dave Friend. This was the best attended talk that the local IMI group had held, so thanks again for their help in making it a good evening. We have asked if we can all go back again next year, and maybe do something for the Northbrook College motorsport students at the same time.

I'd also just like to say thanks to my crew of Ken, Bob and Annnette, and to John Torring, Fred Furlong of Furlong Tyres, Earls Direct, Ray Nicholson of NGK Spark Plugs, Rossetts Mercedes Benz Eastbourne, Weruwise Bexhill, Bexhill Bearings, Antony at G-Max, Web Cams and Arias Pistons, Andrew at G&S valves, along with everybody else who helps and supports us (and that includes the Eurodragster.com team!) .

A very special thanks goes to Pete Davies and Frank Brachtvogel for sharing their time and experience with us to improve the bike, and to all those who have given support and encouragement when all has not been well with the world of Top Fuel Bike in trying to get down the track and staying in the same lane as I started in. They know who they are - thanks.


Swift snippets.
24th December: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came only with the words "Just in time for Christmas". Apart from it pretty obviously being a dragster in a shipping container we are as much in the dark as everyone else on this one. If you know any more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at
eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.
©Eurodragster.com
We have now posted a page listing the provisional 2009 FIA and FIM/UEM calendars. At least one listed event is TBC, so don't be calling us if you book ferries etc only to find that a date has changed. You can check out the provisional 2009 European Championships schedule by clicking here or by clicking on the 2009 FIA and FIM/UEM schedule link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

From 2008 ACU UK Super Street Bike Champion Steve Venables comes news that his daughter Jemma Venables, who turned sixteen not so long ago, is to contest 9.50 Bike in 2009 on a K7 GSXR 1000. "I think that Jemma will soon get to grips with it as she rips the crap out of her CRF in the fields", says the proud father. "It should be good for the class to have a young lady out there."


Spy picture contest winners.
24th December: Congratulations to Mark Hyde, Neil Peacock and Jamie Dodd who are the winners in our contest to identify a racer from three spy pictures of their car.

Of all the entries we received, only five correctly identified the racer as Swiss Top Fuel Dragster racer and Eurodragster.com News sponsor Urs Erbacher. The spy pictures showed Urs' new Hadman chassis under construction in Houston. Mark, Neil and Jamie will each receive a Fat Attack Racing T-Shirt.

Clue one was "You have already seen this car" and indeed you will have done had you checked out the picture at right in Roger's report from the recent Auto Club NHRA Finals at Pomona. Clue two was "This team may have an advantage at Mantorp Park", because Mantorp Park runs Top Fuel over a thousand feet and Urs and his team will have contested a number of NHRA events over one thousand feet before they next go to Mantorp Park. Clue three was "This racer starts before most" which Urs will, as he intends to start his 2009 season at February's Winternationals at Pomona.
©Eurodragster.com
Urs' tuner Wayne Dupuy, whose idea this contest was, has high hopes of the new car. "It is a state-of-the-art Brad Hadman Top Fueller which will be on the minimum weight of 2300 pounds", he says. "The goal is a 3.79 ET over a thousand feet at 317 miles per hour.

"Everything finally came full circle in 2008 although it was tough. Things are in place and team are looking forward to 2009. We won the first round at Pomona and how we did it was outstanding - 3.88/316.67 over a thousand feet with the top light out when staged. Urs had one of the fastest of all of the cars that weekend and was in the top four for the whole race. A couple of the 60 foot to 330 foot splits were 1.30 flat, that's fast. Half track of 277.67, that's fast. 316.67 at 1000 feet, that's fast and with a car that weighs 2400 pounds, 100 pounds over the minimum weight.

"That's why I am so pumped about building a new car for 2009, it is going to be lighter and faster. Hopefully the same guys on the crew will start out the year like we finished it. At Pomona it was good karma and they were awesome."

Many thanks to Wayne for the pictures and the suggestion for the contest, and to Urs for putting up the T-Shirts.


Drag Racing Unplugged X.
24th December: As has become traditional on our last pre-Christmas update, we have posted a page of the best quotes from this season's Eurodragster.com Event Coverage including Tog, Simon, Roger, Kirstie and Christer's personal Quotes of the Year, together with other one-liners we didn't publish at the time. In association with our Event Coverage sponsor American Car Imports we are pleased to present Drag Racing Unplugged X, the 2008 collection.
©Eurodragster.com
Click here to view Drag Racing Unplugged X, or click on the Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page. Enjoy!


Christmas Quiz: Whose eyes?
24th December: As we will be taking a break until Saturday (see below) we thought it would be fun to leave our readers a Christmas Quiz to keep you going until we return. The Quiz consists of forty pairs of eyes whose owners you can try to identify.
©Eurodragster.com
There are no prizes on offer, so there is no need to write to us with your answers. This Quiz is just for your amusement and we will post the answers when we return on Saturday. To make things easier the Quiz is formatted for printing so that you can write your answers on the page.

To try the Christmas Quiz either click here or click on the pair of eyes at right.


2008 Champions' Champions.
24th December: Honorary Eurodragster.com staff member Andy Marrs of TSI Timers and Simon have again been hard at work to compile lists of European and UK Champions' Champions. The Champions' Champions tables show the all-time highest points earners since the FIA and FIM/UEM European Championships began in 1996 and 1992 respectively, and the UK National Championships began in 1999.

On the European Championships front, Michael Malmgren (FIA) and Roger Pettersson (FIM/UEM) remain the all-time highest points earners in their respective Championships.

Top Fuel Dragster racer Lex Joon has come in to the FIA all-time top ten at #10, whilst fellow Top Fuel racer and Eurodragster.com News sponsor Urs Erbacher has moved up into #6 and Top Methanol FC racer and fellow Eurodragster.com News sponsor Ulf Leanders has moved up into #8. Pro Stock racer Michael Malmgren passed 4500 FIA career points whilst Top Methanol racer Leif Andréasson passed 4000, Top Methanol Dragster racer Peter Schöfer passed 3500 and Pro Mod racer Niclas Andersson passed 3000.

Andy Carter passed 2000 FIA career points in Top Fuel Dragster whist Micke Kågered has taken over #2 spot from Barry Sheavills whilst Lex Joon has moved up to #5 spot and Tommi Haapanen has taken #6 spot overtaking his wife Anita Mäkelä. Krister Johansson passed 1000 FIA career Top Methanol Dragster points whilst Timo Habermann has come into the TMD top ten at #8. Also passing 1000 FIA career points is Top Methanol Funny Car racer Arvid Grødem who has also overtaken Lex Joon for #7 spot in TMFC. Jimmy Ålund has moved into #2 spot in Pro Stock whilst Magnus Hansson has overtaken Jan Murén for #5 spot.

2008 UEM Top Fuel Bike Champion Ian King has come in to the FIM/UEM all-time top ten at #10 whilst Supertwin racer Per Bengtsson has passed 1500 FIM/UEM career points and moved up to #6 spot. Rikard Gustavsson has moved up an incredible seven places to take #10 spot in the all-time Top Fuel Bike standings. Hans Olav Olstad has moved into the Supertwin top ten at #9 whilst Chris Hope has come in to the Pro Stock Bike top ten at #8 and Martin Bishop has passed 1000 FIM/UEM career points.

The ground rules for the UK Champions' Champions are that an event must be completed for a win to be registered; wins are ranked by those scored by a particular driver or rider, whereas points are scored and ranked on a team basis. For teams with multiple cars or drivers changing teams during the season, the compiler's decision is final.

Turner Racing has the lead in Top Methanol (using points counted towards the SPRC Championship) with seven Championships and twelve or Rob and heading the points tally over second-placed Dave Wilson. Over his entire career, Rob has won the UK Championship ten times.

Rebel T with driver Clayton Round has won a hat trick of Championships in the Nostalgia Fuel Altered Association. Rebel T's lead over second-placed Xtreme Racing with driver Bob Glassup is 1050 points. Rebel T disbanded after 2007 and Xtreme Racing took 2008 out to upgrade the drivetrain; Bob Glassup will be looking to catch up in 2009.

In MSA Pro Modified Andy Robinson heads the number of race wins and has overtaken the now-retired Gordon Appleton for aggregate points. Whilst Andy is credited with one Championship during the period under review he also won the 1997 and 1998 Championships in Pro Modified.

Former Super Modified racers Ellis Racing equal Danny Cockerill for Championships won with a total of two each. Danny still leads the wins with a total of seven to date but of the racers on five wins only Fred Hone is still active in the class and needs two more to catch Danny. In the points chase Ellis Racing heads Fred Hone, but by only a single point.

Tim Adam continues to have a substantial lead in Super Comp points and event wins, with Chris Johnson's tied with Tim on two Championships each. Six drivers have one Championship each. Tim also leads the number of Championships in Super Gas with four, against Frank Mason's two. Frank Mason is well ahead in event wins, having won twelve events in the last ten years and Super Gas points. In Super Street 2008 Champion Leigh Morris, 2006-2007 Champ Bob Lees, Mike Bentley and Team Rat Rage each have two Championships. Leigh Morris is ahead on number of wins, eleven in the last ten years to John Grant's seven. Bob Lees has the greatest points tally, with a margin of 820 points over Leigh Morris.

In Super Pro ET, Steve Green, Martyn Jones and Ian Tubb have two Championships each. Barry Giles leads wins with eleven in total to Steve Green's eight, and Martyn Jones (Team H&C Racing) heads the aggregate points. Pro ET has three teams with two Championships each, Paul Baynton becoming the newest with this accolade after back-to-back titles in 2007 and 2008. Other top teams with double Championships are Team Heaven & Hell with Team Top Banana. Team Heaven & Hell's original Camaro leads the points, and Team Top Banana driver Lee Huxley has moved into the lead on wins with seven against Bob Doyle's six. In Sportsman ET, a change in the guard means there is no alteration in results from last year with Al and Linda Platt's Team Rainy City Lightning being Champions in 2003-5 and ahead in the points and Championships, with Rick Denny continuing to lead the number of wins at seven. The most successful current runners are Geoff Cowley on two Championships and five event wins and Nick Gay who is third in aggregate points.

In Junior Dragster Scott Hauser has become the second racer in UK Drag Racing history to have won this Championship twice. Other double Champion Nick Mugridge continues to lead the points tally with a 35% greater total than Scott who is second place, and leads the wins with nine in total.

Steve Pateman has continued his dominance in B&H Automotive Street Eliminator with five Championships, seventeen event wins and a points total thirty seven per cent higher than second placed Steve Nash (points for Street Eliminator are scored since 2000).

Richard Sawatzki has joined Fred Furlong as a double 9.50 Bike Champion in the class over the last ten years. Fred Furlong continues to lead the points tally over Richard who moves up to second place and Richard now ties with Jamie Sneddon for the number of wins at seven.

In ACU Top Fuel Bike, Steve Woollatt has won eight Championships since 1999, has twenty event wins to his name, and leads the points tally with more than double the points of second-placed Ian King. In his career, Steve has won an incredible twelve Championships.

Neil Midgley retains his lead in all categories for ACU Funny Bike as does Dave Beck in ACU Pro Stock Bike. In ACU Competition Bike, Phil Leamon is the only rider to have won two Championships over the period and remains ahead in wins and points. Graham Dance remains ahead in all categories in ACU Super Street Bike and Steve Venables is second in all three categories.

You can check out this year's Champions' Champions tables by clicking here or by clicking on the Champions' Champions link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please join us in a big Thank You to Andy and Simon for their hard work.


Eurodragster.com's Christmas break.
24th December: We will now be taking our Christmas break, and assuming that there is anything to tell you we will be back during the day on Saturday (27th December). Keep those news items coming to news@eurodragster.com and we will post them on Saturday.

In the meantime we have compiled our usual requests to Father Christmas, together with our New Year resolutions, and you can hold us to these:

Top of Tog's Christmas list: Sunburn.

Top of Simon's Christmas list: A piece of paper with the capacity of Colin Lazenby's Sonny's engine written on it.

Top of Roger's Christmas list: The new Nikon D3X camera. Or even enough cash for a down payment.

Top of Kirstie's Christmas list: I would like Santa to help me forgive my brother Spencer for selling Quantum Leap. If this is not possible then a set of my very own balloon dragsters. I had a lot of fun with a set at a very wet and snowy Santa Pod this year!
©Eurodragster.com
Tog's New Year resolution: To go to a drag race and do nothing but watch.

Simon's New Year resolution: Not to make any New Year resolutions...D'oh!

Roger's New Year resolution: To have an all round better year than in 2008.

Kirstie's New Year resolution: Non drag racing-related: Start jogging again at 6:00 every morning. Drag racing-related: To have as much fun as I did in 2008 but with a bit more sun this time!

Tog, Simon, Roger and Kirstie would like to wish all Eurodragster.com readers and their families the very Happiest of Christmases, and to thank everyone who has sent us personal Christmas wishes and cards as well as those on our on-line Christmas Card.

See you on Saturday - have a good one, everyone!


Swift snippets.
23rd December: Christmas has come early for a racer UK currently in Super Street as he will be moving up to Super Pro ET during 2009 with this newly-imported mean-looking blown-alcohol Chevy Nova. The racer has promised more details soon and asked us to wish everyone a Happy Christmas.
©Eurodragster.com
Please note that the deadline for news items for the Christmas Eve update and also for Christmas Card messages is 20:00 UK this evening (Tuesday). The deadline for entries for the I.D. the Spy Picture Contest is 23:59 this evening.


Web site updates.
23rd December: Bob Roberts has been hard at work on the web site of Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Andy Robinson Race Cars with no less than three updates. "Following all the spy picture activity on Eurodragster.com recently I've installed a video camera in the ARRC workshop and the first results show Andy and the guys decorating the ARRC Christmas tree", says Bob. "I've also unearthed a promotional video we made in 1991 featuring Andy's Sapphire. The commentary is appalling but I guess I didn't know any better! Andy appears of course and a couple of other racers still active in Pro Mod. And finally, thanks to Eurodragster.com, I have added a copy of Kev Elliott's Hockenheim article. All three updates can be viewed via the What's New page at
www.robinson-race-cars.co.uk.
©Eurodragster.com

RC Juniors.
23rd December: UK Junior Dragster racers Scott Hauser, Ricky Emms and Nick Mugridge took a break from the straightaway when they raced Radio Controlled Touring Cars at West London Racing Centre and Aldershot Model Car Club on the last couple of weekends. It certainly sounds as if Scott in particular showed the circuit guys how it's done, but then we would expect nothing less.

"I have been racing RC cars for almost three and a half years now with sponsorship from Mirage Racing and Apex Models", says Scott. "Nick has raced before on an oval track but is still new to Touring Cars whist Ricky is new to the sport - he has only raced once, last weekend with me at West London. Ricky was racing in the Stock class while I was racing in Modified, and he qualified sixth for his first meeting and in the final managed to get to fifth place. I qualified second in Modified, and in the final I overtook the leader by the first corner because I reacted quicker to the buzzer and led the race from then. I won and I am currently in the lead in the points.

"All three of us raced at Aldershot Model Car Club on Sunday. Nick and Ricky were racing in the same class so I thought I would join them. We all raced in Electric Sport: this class uses a controlled motor to restrict the speed and has a set drive ratio to keep all cars at the same speed. I also raced in another class called Pro Stock but it's not what you're thinking (Boo - Ed) - it's just a faster class of Stock. After the three rounds of qualifying in Electric Sport I was on pole with sixteen laps after five minutes - I lapped the whole field! - second and third place were on fifteen laps, Nick was fourth with fourteen laps, fifth was on thirteen laps, Ricky was sixth with twelve laps and last place was on eleven laps. I also got the new track record for the Electric Sport class by two laps!
©Eurodragster.com
"Pro Stock is a very competitive class. I qualified twelfth out of nineteen, which meant that I was in the second half of the finals as there are up to ten cars in each race. I started second on the grid and again my quick reactions got me in the lead by the first corner. I led from that point onward and was leaving the other cars each lap, and I picked up the win.

"Overall the day was good and Nick, Ricky and I really enjoyed ourselves. There is also a new RC track at Yateley which looks really good, just a bit big! We might be going to race there soon."


2008 Christmas Card opened.
22nd December: We have now opened the 2008 Eurodragster.com Christmas Card, which you can read by
clicking here or by clicking on the 2008 Christmas Card link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
©Eurodragster.com
If you would like to send a Christmas message to your fellow readers, fans, fellow racers, favourite racer or race official or indeed anyone (Even us - Ed) then drop an E-Mail to eurodragster.xmas@btinternet.com and we'll add it to the Christmas Card as soon as we can.


Fatherland affair.
22nd December: Germany's annual end-of-year automotive extravaganza, the nine-day Essen Motor Show, celebrated its 41st anniversary earlier this month with the usual wide variety of street, race and show machines that attendees have come to expect, writes photo-journalist and honorary Eurodragster.com staff member Andy Willsheer (click on pictures or links for large shots):


The quarter-mile scene was represented by a trio of doorslammers and a Super Twin Top Gas Harley-Davidson dotted throughout the various halls of the municipally owned Messe Essen complex. In no particular order, representing Pro Mod was Norbert Kuno's Lucas Oil Dodge Avenger (serving along with the aforementioned Harley as crowd pullers on the Hockenheimring stand,) and fellow countryman Ingo Rolla's Highway Patrol Avenger on the Street magazine booth with Rudi Füssel's mouse-motored '71 Opel GT - displayed on an accessories company stand - flying the flag for the Super Gas class.

A formidable display of
tractor pullers - something that's never really caught on on this side of the Channel - was also a treat for devotees of brute horsepower, and for those whom get their kicks from watching cars blasting around a figure-of-eight oval track, the drifting display proved very popular.
©Eurodragster.com
The parlous state of the Fatherland's economy induced some exhibitors to pull out of the Show this year, making it necessary for the organisers to rearrange floor plans as necessary. Although the Volkswagen Audi Group was the sole major manufacturer to keep cool and carry on supporting the popular affair, the loss of names such as, for example, Ford and Opel, was not a good sign. But be that as it may, total attendance figures were pretty much on a par with 2007 - when circa 350,000 was the official admittance number - so the net result was as good as could be expected under constrained circumstances, something that was helped by there being cold but settled climes throughout the show tenure.

Basildon's Tony Osborne had his recently finished, A/Gasser-styled Head Hunter '41 Willys coupe - "I'd like to take it along to the Pod and get at least one run along the strip" - on hand as part of an invited quartet of rods'n'customs participating in the inaugural European Custom Concours competition, coming away with the second place trophy for his efforts. So not a bad result all in all.

And if it was good enough for West Coast Customs' boss Ryan Freidlinghaus to pop in and check out matters (the California-based entrepreneur was in Germany on business matters relating to a television programme involving the WCC shop and in Berlin that opened in September), then why not make a note of next year's show dates, 28th November through 6th December, and take a look for yourself.


Swift snippets.
22nd December: To catch up on the last couple of spy pictures, the picture of the front end of a dragster which we posted last Monday turns out to be Stig Neergaard's new Top Fuel Dragster, whilst Jane Walton writes to tell us that the "Cuda from way back" which we pictured on Thursday is an original item being rebuilt at Eurodragster.com Site Search sponsor Hauser Racing. The Cuda was stored in California for twenty seven years and was last raced by Jim Smith in Sacramento in 1984.
©Eurodragster.com
On the subject of spy pictures, don't forget that our contest to I.D. the Spy Pictures and win a T-Shirt closes at 23:59 UK tomorrow (Tuesday). You can find the three pictures and clues on our news updates for 18th December, 13th December and 9th December although you can now only submit one entry.

Sharron Collier has been in touch to ask us to say a big Happy 12th Birthday to "Wicked" son and Junior Drag Bike racer Scott Collier. Sharron tells us that Scott is excelling at secondary school particularly in design technology and maths. Nice one Scott, you have a great day.

In recognition of some outstanding solo work at events this season, her Eurodragster.com colleagues are agreed that Kirstie merited a promotion. With immediate effect Kirstie's job title on Eurodragster.com has changed from Assistant Pit Reporter and Photographer to Pit Reporter and Photographer. Congratulations Kirstie!

The last pre-Christmas update here on Eurodragster.com will be posted on Christmas Eve (Wednesday). As well as any news we receive, the Christmas Eve update will feature the traditional Drag Racing Unplugged collection of our favourite quotes from the year's Event Coverage as well as the 2008 Champions' Champions, the tops of our Christmas present lists and our New Year resolutions, the winners in the Spy Picture Contest, and a Quiz to keep you busy whilst we take our Christmas break from which we will return on Saturday (27th). The deadline for news items for the Christmas Eve update and Christmas Card messages is 20:00 UK tomorrow (Tuesday).


Veidec Festival Sportsman DVD review.
22nd December: The Summer on Wheels Veidec Festival DVD, available now, presents eliminations in Sportsman car classes, writes Simon:

The production this year is different from last year in that the trackside big screen footage is used with a greater number of startline close-up shots. The quality of footage is therefore very similar to the FIA coverage. Once again the track commentary in Swedish is provided by Christer Abrahamson, Björn Sundqvist and Olle Elmqvist.

Competition Eliminator round one shows racing in front of a packed crowd and indeed this was one of the best races in the 2008 European season. Kristina Hägglund has moved up to an A/D in Comp but suffered mechanical troubles against Mats Jakobsson. A highlight is Yngve Solberg's AA/D against Rimbert Valström in the Bankrobber Plymouth Wagon, Rimbert hanging on for the win and hurting pistons in the effort. Dennis Habermann is running in AA/D in this category and has to overcome a 2.7-second handicap start. The range of indexes is huge, with a four cylinder dragster dialling 10.3 in the next race.

A nice touch of humour is the caption crediting photographer Stefan Boman as "Mr I never get in the way" Boman as he walks in front of the camera, with the track fortunately empty.
©Eurodragster.com
Each round shown is in the same order it occurred at the event. Great care is taken to preserve continuity in the editing. In Super Comp, Joonas Pesonen's Spitzer dragster with its monostrut rear wing is eye-catching. We also admired Kim Andersen's late model Mustang doorslammer from Denmark. Christer Haglund's dragster was the Super Comp winner. In Super Gas Round One Jon Olsen's Willys Pickup is an unusual vehicle for the class (but we miss the wheelies he made in qualifying). Christer Uhlin, a regular visitor to Santa Pod, is the victor in this category. Stock/Super Stock includes impressive launches and close racing, P-A Lindtröm in his Dodge Challenger the winner.

Junior Dragster is shown from Round 2, and Rasmus Möller was the victor. Super Street is shown in its entirety; former Junior Dragster star Jessica Gustavsson did well to reach the semis in her first year in the class and Gideon Liljegren in his Chevelle won the event.

Christian Sagelv, Petri Nagy and Sarah Romahn (Comp Eliminator) are interviewed, the latter in English. Sarah is eighteen years old and a potential star of the future. Petri with his Chevy Monte Carlo was the eventual victor in Comp Eliminator.

One minor gripe is that the winner and times are not captioned, although the finish line camera makes it clear who won and Eurodragster.com has the timing details of each run.

The run time on this DVD is two hours and twenty minutes and navigation is easy via twenty five index points. This highly recommended DVD can br purchased for 179 SEK from www.summeronwheels.com or can be bought in the UK from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 p+p.


Magazine update.
22nd December: Looking for something to read over the holiday period? Then look no further as some of the UK's top magazine and newspaper titles may just have the answer, writes Jerry Cookson:

We'll start off with the monthly issues of Custom Car and American Car World magazines. Custom Car wraps up the UK drag racing season with photo reviews from the Halloween and Flame and Thunder events from Shakespeare County and Santa Pod Raceways. There's also an interesting retrospective about the UK Nostalgia drag racing scene's popular Flathead Meltdown competitions as well as the a feature about alternative eco friendly engines for hot rodding.

American Car World also has a Nostalgia feel to it with a round-up from the recent Muscle Car Power Tour finale at Shakespeare County, a look at Finn Mika Tanner's '65 Plymouth Belvedere A/FX replica which is good for 12.2-second time slips, coverage of the seventh round of B&H Automotive Street Eliminator from Santa Pod, and part one of Andy Frost's diary taking in the highs and lows from his recent trip to Canada for the second World Street Race Championships.

Over on the selves at American Auto Mags we find the January issue of Drag Racer packed as usual with a great line-up of Nostalgia features with the a look at the recent Dover Drag Strip Reunion, the life and drag strip career of the All American Showman Broadway Bob Metzler, Fuel Altered highlights from the Pepsi Nightfire Nationals, and a behind the scenes look at the twin-strip zMax Dragway facility in North Carolina. There's the usual monthly retro columns written by Don Garlits and Tom McEwen as well as tech and driver features.

In addition to a forty eight-page Review of the Year special, the double issue Motor Cycle News looks at the world of down under Sand Drag Racing. There's no controlling body, officials or rule book. Just full on dirty digging power. You can watch a video clip of this crazy sport at www.motorcyclenews.com/sanddragging. Over in the Sporting Scene section of Motorsport News there's a seasonal but strange report about a Christmas Tree!

Entitled The Speed Issue, the latest Classic Ford looks at one of Britain's oldest speed events, the Brighton Speed Trials, there's a look back at the Old Skool Ford Drag Club's summer trip to Malta to take on the locals at their own game at Hal Far Raceway, a look at a 468 ci Big Block Chevy powered Capri - the new Street Eliminator contender from the garage of Tony Higgs - how to run the quarter mile, and Ford Fair's recent 0-60 Challenge at Silverstone where our very own Pro ET star John Atkinson topped the charts with a time of 3.35 seconds in his mad MK1 Cortina Estate. Happy reading!
©Eurodragster.com

SPRC Perpetual Awards week 5.
20th December: Once again Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are teaming up to give Eurodragster.com readers the chance of input to the
SPRC Perpetual Awards, which will be presented at the joint APIRA/SPRC Dinner Dance and Trophy presentation on Saturday 7th February 2009.

For seven of the eight 2008 season awards, a shortlist has been decided upon for which votes can be submitted by E-Mail. There are eight awards in all: this week's category is the James Edgar Memorial Trophy. Nominations are also being accepted for the Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy. The votes of Eurodragster.com readers will be taken into consideration when the SPRC Committee decides upon the winners.

The James Edgar Memorial Trophy is awarded for outstanding performance by a Crew Chief or tuner. The SPRC Committee's shortlist, in alphabetical order, is as follows:

Karsten and Per Andersen, for Andy Carter (Top Fuel Dragster)
Go to vote

Graham Barrs, for Nigel Payne (Super Modified)
Go to vote

Dave Friend, for Gary Jones (Funny Bike)
Go to vote

Bob Jarrett, for John Spuffard (Fuel Funny Car)
Go to vote

Dan Page, for Jon Morton, Heide Page and himself (Super Comp/Gas, Pro ET)
Go to vote

Vincent Pels, for Roel Koedam (Supertwin)
Go to vote

Paul Wright, for himself (Outlaw Anglia)
Go to vote

To place your vote, go to the official SPRC Perpetual Awards page which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the SPRC Perpetual Awards vote link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page.
©Eurodragster.com
The Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy, for which votes are also now being taken, was first awarded to Santa Pod Raceway's late Chief Marshal, Alex Brachtvogel, in 2001 to mark his outstanding contribution to Santa Pod Raceway and the sport as a whole. After Alex's death the trophy was named in his memory and continues to be awarded for contribution to drag racing. There is no shortlist for the Alex Brachtvogel award. Nominations are invited from Eurodragster.com readers for racers, race officials, track and safety crews, club officials, media, or anyone else who has contributed to the sport. Last year the trophy was awarded to SPRC Chief Starter Ian Marshall. Again see the official web page for more details or E-Mail your nomination to sprc.awards.2008@btinternet.com specifying SPRC Alex Brachtvogel Trophy nomination as the subject and your nomination in the body of the E-Mail.

Voting is per category, so if you vote for the James Edgar Memorial Trophy today then you will be able to vote for next week's category, which is the Paul Giddings Memorial Trophy, and so on.

For each of the Awards, one vote per E-Mail address per nominee will be accepted: multiple votes for the same nominee from the same E-Mail address will all be disqualified. And every year we say this, but every year someone tries it on and it has already been attempted this year: please note that blatant attempts at organising mass votes - for example asking workmates or forum members to vote en masse - are easily identified and all such votes will be disallowed as they have been in previous years. Concerted attempts at vote-rigging will result in the nominee being removed from the shortlist.


Contest: I.D. the Spy Picture 3.
18th December: Eurodragster.com has teamed up with a race team whose identity we cannot yet reveal to offer a T-Shirt per picture for three pictures as a prize in our latest contest.

Every few days we will post a spy picture of the race team's car together with a clue, and all you have to do is to write to us and identify the racer concerned. You get nothing for showing off and telling us what type of race car it is. You should be able to work out the racer's identity if you have been paying attention to Eurodragster.com recently.

Here is the third and final picture, and the third and final clue is: this racer starts before most.
©Eurodragster.com
The first- and second-round winners have been selected, so if you entered after the first and/or second pictures were published then you can enter again now, either with the same answer or a different answer to that you gave last time.

How to enter: If you'd like to take a shot at identifying the owner of this car and winning one of their team T-Shirts, then send an E-Mail to
eurodragster.win@btinternet.com specifying Spy Picture Contest as the subject and telling us (1) the name of the racer; (2) your own name; (3) your address; and (4) your T-Shirt size.

You can check out the first two pictures and clues on our news updates of 9th December and 13th December.

This contest is open to all of our readers wherever you are located and however old or young you are. The contest closes at 23:59 UK next Tuesday (23rd) and winners will be notified and announced here on Eurodragster.com News on Christmas Eve. Good luck!


Sweden's Champions honoured.
18th December: Awards were presented to the stars of Swedish motorsport including this year's FIA European Champions and Junior Dragster Champion Ludvig Pereés at the recent Bilsportgalan, writes Lena Perés:
©Eurodragster.com
Two drag racers were nominated for the Bilsport Awards, Ulf Leanders and Ludvig Perés. Unfortunately neither took the Awards but they both won the Drag Racing Award and Ludvig also won some prize money which will be very useful for the new Junior Dragster which dad Mats Eriksson is building over this winter. Well-known speedway racer and Let's Dance winner Tony Rickardsson presented the prize to a very happy Ludvig.

FIA trophies were presented to the European Championship winners Micke Lindahl (Pro Mod), Ulf Leanders (Top Methanol FC) and Jimmy Ålund (Pro Stock) as drag racing was not in the ceremony at Monaco this year. Micke Kågered was presented with a medal for his third place in the Top Fuel Championship.

Now we're heading for new awards next season.


A Minor line in merchandise.
18th December: The UK's Spellbound Super Comp team are now selling T-Shirts and cards featuring their popular Morris Minor pick-up with artwork by Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Power Race Graphics. Driver Malcolm Motler tells us that he wasn't planning to start a line of merchandise but that a well-timed birthday put an idea into his the head of wife Marcie.

"As you know it was my fiftieth birthday last month, and as a surprise Marcie had Darren at Power Race Graphics design a T-Shirt for my birthday present", says Malcolm. "Marcie was going to get fifty T-Shirts done after I had seen the artwork, but it was so good that we decided to get more printed. What a helpful guy Darren has been, too. Top man!
©Eurodragster.com
"The T-Shirts are white with the image on the back and come in sizes from small to XXL. They are available now at £10 each plus postage. We also have prints of the artwork on 12" x 16" card for £5 plus postage. If you would like to order a short or a card then please E-Mail mm.spellbound@ntlworld.com. The shirts and cards will also be available at the track next year."


Swift snippets.
18th December: The project to restore the Allard Dragster to Cacklefest condition has taken another step forward with the news that Beaulieu Motor Museum Trustee, motorsport enthusiast and Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason has become its Patron. You can find out more on the Allard Chrysler Action Group Blog on the Acceleration Archive at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk.

The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com shows what we are told is "A Cuda from way back" being prepared for a return to the track. If you know any more, or if you would like to send your own spy pictures, then please E-Mail us at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.
©Eurodragster.com
The Showtime Fuel Funny Car has been featured in Drag Race Technology, a special report from the publishers of Race Engine Technology. You can find out more on the team's official web site at www.showtimeracinguk.com.

Many congratulations to UK Super Gas racer Jon Giles and wife Donna on the arrival of new crew member, to start with, and Roar Willys driver from 2025 Francesca Giles. Francesca arrived yesterday tipping the scales at 6lb 8oz. "A special Thank You to Donna for producing such a special team member", says Jon.

Our good friend Ozzy Ewing is currently working on a number of projects which require photographs of drag bikes at both Santa Pod and Shakespeare County Raceways. If you can help with drag bike pictures then please drop Ozzy a line at photos@wtdesigns.co.uk.


SCR/APIRA backing BDRHoF.
18th December: The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame in association with US Automotive are pleased to announce that Shakespeare County Raceway and the Avon Park International Racers Association will be continuing their support and sponsorship.

"We now have all of the major Raceways in the UK supporting the BDRHoF along with other prominent drag racing clubs and companies who are involved with drag racing in some form or other", says Chairman Stu Bradbury. "The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame has gone from strength to strength over the last three years. More and more companies and organisations are donating services or cash contributions to the HoF fund. This in turn is helping the HoF to become a truly professional organisation deserving of these very special and dedicated drag racing pioneers.
©Eurodragster.com
"We have five very important and influential people ready to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in February. These people have made very special contributions to drag racing and their efforts should never, and from now on will never, be overlooked."

The 2009 inductees to the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame will be announced here on Eurodragster.com News on 1st February.


Top Doorslammer Cup DVD review.
18th December: The Toyo Top Doorslammer Cup 2008 DVD, produced by Summer on Wheels, is now available and features four rounds of the Cup at Malmö, Piteå, Gardermoen and Sundsvall writes Simon:

At Malmo on 30th May to 1st June we see qualifying action and hear (in Swedish) from 2008 Champion Niclas Andersson ('51 Chevy Business Coupe) Johan Westberg (Calibra) and Paolo Andreini in the twin turbo pickup truck. Then it's into eliminations. The eighth mile Malmo track has an excellent starting line and the racing is close. There is a head on angle at the end of the track which gives great parachute shots and emphasises the short shutdown area. Niclas Andersson ran a 4.15 and Micke Nord 4.17. Another car which caught our eye was the TeeCee Racing '68 Camaro running a Scott Schafiroff nitrous motor with Stefan 'Totte' Carlsson as driver. In the semis Benny Strand defeated Niclas Andersson and Micke Nord defeated Johan Westberg and Benny was the overall victor in the final.

The 2008 season was badly rain affected and Top Doorslammer was no exception. The round at Sundsvall on 13th-15th June was a rain-out as was the third round at Västerås. The Championship moved to Piteå for the Midnight Sun Internationals on 11th-13th July. We see action from Per Svedberg who runs a blown Challenger and Mats Brag (who attends Mantorp to run in Comp Eliminator) who ran a new best of 6.60. Johan Lindberg brought out the New Generation Nova at this event. Niclas Andersson ran a superb 6.42 for number one spot and bettered this with two 6.39s and a 6.27 in eliminations. Eliminations were a six-car field and it appears that the race track had the better traction in the left lane. The final scheduled between Niclas and Johan was unable to be run leaving Benny Strand with a slim lead over Niclas.
©Eurodragster.com
On 1st-3rd August at the NDRG meeting at Gardermoen in Norway Niclas Andersson qualifies top with a 6.28 and the class is joined by Terje Håkonsen in the Firebird and Jan Gunnarson in the beautiful Cadillac. Roger Johansson ran the Mustang in competition. Paolo Andreini made contact with the guardrail but was quite unharmed. But after round one of eliminations we had yet another rainout.

On 16th-17th August we finally had a completed race, at Sundsvall. At the start there were traction troubles with some evidence of tyre shake for the front runners, but the track came round. Magnus Palm's wonderful '52 Chevy made its initial runs. Paolo Andreini had an in-car camera on board for a wild ride which ended up in the weeds with some front end damage. Lenn Lindell ran a 6.45 in his Chevelle to be surprise number one qualifier. Arne Lindqvist had a frightening barrel roll in his '55 Chevy but amazingly emerged totally unscathed. The race was won by Niclas Andersson with a barrage of 6.3s and a 6.48 in the final against Championship contender Benny Strand.

For the record, on 30th-31st August the racing was at Vansbro, won by Hans Knuters, and the winner at the finals at Malmö on 12th-14th September was Mikael Nord. These rounds are not shown, but despite omission of rounds the viewing of the four races featured is a great insight into the sport in Scandinavia outside of the FIA/UEM series.

Sponsors of the DVD are Norrlands Custom, Snowball Racing Production, Street and Strip magazine, FunnyThings AB, and USABil.nu.

The DVD is all in Swedish with commentary by Henrik Modigh and presentation and interviews by Tommy Ledberg and Sara Lindskog.

The Top Doorslammer Cup 2008 DVD costs 179 SEK from www.summeronwheels.com or in the UK can be bought from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 p+p.


Web site updates.
18th December: A twenty fourth Readers' Gallery has been added to our good friend Alan Currans' excellent Acceleration Archive. The new gallery features an impressive line-up of stars from the past including Dennis Priddle's Mr Six dragster and his much later Monza flopper, Ed Shaver and the rear engined Castrol Funny Car, the Stones' legendary Tee Rat Fuel Altered, the Stardust FC and Dave Lee Travis' The Needle. Two-wheeled fans will enjoy pictures of John Hobbs' Hobbit and the unbelievable 500cc Vincent Comet-powered bike of Brian Chapman. You can access the new gallery via the What's New link at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk.
©Eurodragster.com
If you like to talk Nostalgia then once you have checked out the latest update on the Acceleration Archive you could do a lot worse than to step across to our good buddy Jon Spoard's excellent UK Drag Racing Nostalgia web site which not only features historic photographs, video clips and much more but which also hosts an exemplary discussion forum which does just what it says on the tin with interesting ego- and eccentric-free discussions and the exchange of information and memories. Hardly a week passes by on the UKDRN forum without another name from the old days calling in. You can check it out at www.ukdrn.co.uk.


Swift snippets.
17th December: Swedish Top Methanol FC racer Kjell Sjöblöm will be returning to the track in 2009. The FC has been repaired after a tussle with the wall at Sundsvall Raceway and amongst several new parts will be sporting a PSI supercharger next season. You can read more on Kjell's web site at
www.pritonaracing.com.

Mark Bishop has confirmed that the spy picture of 3rd December showed Kim Bishop's Willys Coupe. "After many years as a Hot Rod/RWYB car Kim was finally persuaded to join us in Pro ET", says Mark. "But the car was quite heavy and Kim wanted to go quicker so it was decided to build have a new lighter racing chassis built as the car was no longer on the road. Hopefully the car will be back out at the beginning the new season with the same stance and looking very similar with the standard grey primer paint scheme but with a quicker time. Thank you to Dave Eady's American Car Parts for his years of continued support and to Webster Race Engineering who did a great job of getting all the work done within two weeks of the body being delivered."
©Eurodragster.com
UK Fuel Altered racer Tony Betts has put Venom 2 up for sale. "The sale is due to the credit crunch and our exploits in Spain", says Tony. "I think most people will know the car and of its potential to be the quickest fuel altered outside the USA. The standard of the workmanship is first class thanks to a great team. The whole set-up is for sale including what must be the best support vehicle in the sport. Please see advert in Cars For Sale on the Swap Meet. I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has helped us over the last few years. This may not be the last of Venom - watch this space!

We would like to wish a very Happy Birthday to Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Paula Marshall. Hope you have a great day, Paula, and maybe you will allow yourself a day off?

The last pre-Christmas update here on Eurodragster.com will be posted on Christmas Eve (next Wednesday). As well as any news we receive, the Christmas Eve update will feature the traditional Drag Racing Unplugged collection of our favourite quotes from the year's Event Coverage as well as the 2008 Champions' Champions, the tops of our Christmas present lists and our New Year resolutions, the winners in the Spy Picture Contest, and a Quiz to keep you busy whilst we take our Christmas break from which we will return on Saturday 27th December. The deadline for news items for the Christmas Eve update is 20:00 UK next Tuesday (23rd).


Two rocketeering partners.
17th December: The UK's Laffin-Gas Rocket Dragster team has been joined by two new Development Partners, Fike and IKV Lubricants.

"With extensive new engineering now going into the car, more and more we need very specialist materials and equipment", says Carolynne Campbell. "As we all know, the more specialist stuff is the more it costs, so help in these areas is extremely welcome. It's also very refreshing to find companies who have the imagination and foresight to appreciate the value of being part of our kind of experimental work."

Fike are an international organization who are world-leaders in over-pressure and explosion protection devices for process industries and the oil and gas sector. With the advent of our new lightweight high-pressure accumulators, we have been obliged to review our over-pressure protection. Having liquid Nitrous Oxide on board,we have to extremely careful to avoid the possibility of pressure-shock and we have to have adequate safety measures should the Nitrous suddenly go over pressure. Fike have provided burst-discs and holders for each of our four discrete rocket systems. These devices are beautifully made and operate to a tolerance of +/- 5%. Fike really pulled out the stops for us, producing the discs to our requirements in the USA and shipping the whole kit to us in very short order. You can contact Fike UK at www.fike.com.

IKV Lubricants are a British firm and part of an international group of companies supplying their own specialist lubricants and also supplying the best products from around the planet, including Dupont's Krytox performance lubricants and coatings. When using a powerful oxidizer such as Nitrous Oxide, the mantra is Use no grease! Nitrous can react with hydrocarbon-based materials in a big and catastrophic way. Everything which goes into our systems has to be examined and investigated for material compatibility. The new accumulators are of the free-floating-piston type. Sealed with hydraulic-style lip seals (compatible with N2O), we started looking for a stable grease-like lubricant to ensure free movement of the pistons. IKV Lubricants have come through for us! The special fluorinated grease they have supplied is completely chemically inert and tested as non-reactive with Nitrous oxide. They have also supplied the lubricant in a lightweight spray format and in a cunning little applicator pen, which means we can now lubricate our connections in the systems. The stuff is not cheap, but a little goes a long way. When we were first quoted the price, we were tempted to ask if it was platinum based! Again, a firm with imagination and foresight has quickly come to our aid, by donating these extremely useful supplies. We agreed the partnership on Friday, the lubricants were with us on Monday. You can contact IKV Lubricants at www.ikvlubricants.com.

"The first of a set of four accumulators will now be ready for testing early in the New Year", adds Carolynne. "This would not have been possible without the assistance from Fike and IKV."
©Eurodragster.com

Nitro Warriors DVD review.
17th December: Nitro Warriors is one of the finest of the 2008 class of Quarter Mile High DVDs by Ppower Point Communications. The action is spectacular, the soundtrack exciting and the filming exceeds in quality even the finest of previous offerings, writes Simon:

The DVD starts at the Summernationals at Santa Pod. The Wratten Brothers' performances were producing times in the 6.4-6.5s region. Meanwhile the resurgent Havoc team, entered by Eurodragster.com main sponsor ICE Automotive, went straight into the sixes. Dave Grabham with a new big block engine was running mid sevens. The nitro runners sounded strong, John Wright in Chaos with a superb launch and later crossing lanes to run a disputed 6.19. Jim Usher was producing ever smokier burnouts in The Mob. Double champion Clayton Round was running consistently in Rebel T. The final was Dennis Wratten who, with a new European record, defeated Nick Davies.

The variety of angles enhances the excitement and this class really benefits from the finish line angle. Make no mistake, at this event after early season frustrations, these drivers were really going for it and with all the power at their disposal, the speeds reached are stunning for such short wheelbased vehicles.

Earlier rounds were snowed out (the Easter Snowball) or rained on (Springspeed Festival). At Shakespeare County there were only two rounds for the class. Neil Townson in the Northern Spirit '32 Ford entered the frame and Dennis Wratten continued his excellent form. Joe Bond was dialling a new motor. Bjorn Martensson visited from Sweden to do observed runs in a proven five second nitro runner he had imported from the US.
©Eurodragster.com
The Open Sport Nationals saw the return of Bennett Racing's Relentless entry after a difficult start to the year about which you can read in Luke's Blog entries here on Eurodragster.com. Tony Betts' brand new Venom entry made its track début and it looked menacing and sounded crisp. Dave Grabham ran a personal best 7.19 and swore to remove his beard and hair once he broke into the sixes. John Wright's tumble in Chaos is shown and we heard later from car owner and NFAA organiser that owner Lawrie Gatehouse is rebuilding ahead of a 2009 return.

At the Hot Rod Drags the shots around the Shakespeare County facility show that the class can be compared with examples of the original cars which inspired them. There are more shots of Wendy Baker's Time Warp nostalgia flopper.

The National Finals at Santa Pod was sunny, after the fog burnt off, and many teams were looking to run harder than ever before. The night session was superb in great conditions, Joe Bond running a 7.06 and on the following day running his first six, a 6.85. The Championship came down to the wire between the Wrattens' Dirty Harry and Nick Davies and Rob Loaring's Havoc. In the interviews, Rob Loaring tells the tale of a mechanically troubled event. And in the final, Dennis Wratten takes the Championship and Best Appearing Crew.

The action is supplemented by plenty of pit shots of warm-ups and interviews which enhance the atmosphere of the DVD. The racing reached new performance peaks and is in excellent health going into 2009. One of several additional cars anticipated for next year is Bob Glassup's Xtreme Racing Topolino and Bob is interviewed looking forward to his return. Nitro Warriors 2008 is a production of Power Point Communications and can be obtained direct from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 UK p+p.


Web site updates.
17th December: In the latest entry in his exclusive Racer Blog, UK Top Methanol Dragster racer and Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Derek Flynn has a few words with a potential new sponsor. You can check out Derek's latest Blog entry by clicking here or by clicking on the Racer Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
©Eurodragster.com

Swift snippets.
16th December: Swedish Top Fuel Dragster team Micke Kågered Racing have now received stocks of the official 2008 FIA and FIM/UEM European Championships DVD and are able to offer immediate delivery to Sweden and Scandinavia in time for Christmas. For more information or to place your order, visit the please visit the web shop at www.kagered-racing.com/store.
©Eurodragster.com
Collin Morrice has been in touch on behalf of the Morrice family to ask us to wish a very Happy 22nd Birthday to his brother, UK Super Gas racer Stuart Morrice. Our pleasure, have a great day Stuart.

Brian Lazenby of the UK's Team '56 B&H Automotive Street Eliminator team was recently in Pisa and, having had the obligatory propping-up-the-Leaning-Tower picture taken, went shopping and found this well-named shop. We're guessing it's quite an expensive shop too.


Polyurethane at Direct Plastics.
16th December: If you need to replace or upgrade any rubber bushes then Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Direct Plastics Online are excited to announce that they are now stocking a tough new range of hardwearing polyurethane rods.

The polyurethane rods come in an attractive red and can be machined into components to replace any potentially-fatigued bushes and help keep your car arrow-straight. Direct Plastics Online have stock for immediate dispatch in sizes ranging from 12 mm up to 62 mm diameter, although other sizes are available to order with quick delivery times.

For more information check out www.directplasticsonline.co.uk, call 0845 838 3318, or click on the logo at left.


Web site updates.
16th December: In the latest entry in his exclusive Racer Blog, Dutch Top Fuel Dragster racer Lex Joon describes time spent with John Medlen on his and Gerda's recent trip to Pomona. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Racer Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
©Eurodragster.com

SPRC Perpetual Awards week 4.
15th December: Once again Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are teaming up to give Eurodragster.com readers the chance of input to the
SPRC Perpetual Awards, which will be presented at the joint APIRA/SPRC Dinner Dance and Trophy presentation on Saturday 7th February 2009.

For seven of the eight 2008 season awards, a shortlist has been decided upon for which votes can be submitted by E-Mail. There are eight awards in all: this week's category is Most Professional-Appearing Team. Nominations are also being accepted for the Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy. The votes of Eurodragster.com readers will be taken into consideration when the SPRC Committee decides upon the winners.

The Most Professional-Appearing Team trophy rewards not just the presentation of a race vehicle but the team's overall approach to racing. As well as a well-turned-out car or bike, the Committee have considered such aspects as the appearance and attitude of team personnel, the organisation and appearance of their pit area and support equipment, and their readiness when their class is called.

The SPRC Committee's shortlist for Most Professional-Appearing Team is as follows:

Martin Blackwell and the Northants Nitro team, Supertwin Fuel
Go to vote

Tim Blakemore and the Tim Blakemore Racing team, Funny Bike
Go to vote

Chris Hartnell and the Backdraft team, Wild Bunch
Go to vote

Joe Kellett and the Drummin' Man team, Junior Dragster
Go to vote

Paul Wratten and the Wratten Brothers Racing team, NFAA
Go to vote

To place your vote, go to the official SPRC Perpetual Awards page which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the SPRC Perpetual Awards vote link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page.
©Eurodragster.com
The Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy, for which votes are also now being taken, was first awarded to Santa Pod Raceway's late Chief Marshal, Alex Brachtvogel, in 2001 to mark his outstanding contribution to Santa Pod Raceway and the sport as a whole. After Alex's death the trophy was named in his memory and continues to be awarded for contribution to drag racing. There is no shortlist for the Alex Brachtvogel award. Nominations are invited from Eurodragster.com readers for racers, race officials, track and safety crews, club officials, media, or anyone else who has contributed to the sport. Last year the trophy was awarded to SPRC Chief Starter Ian Marshall. Again see the official web page for more details or E-Mail your nomination to sprc.awards.2008@btinternet.com specifying SPRC Alex Brachtvogel Trophy nomination as the subject and your nomination in the body of the E-Mail.

Voting is per category, so if you vote for Most Professional-Appearing Team today then you will be able to vote for next week's category, which is the James Edgar Memorial Trophy, and so on. Because the next category falls in Christmas week, it will be posted here a few days early.

For each of the Awards, one vote per E-Mail address per nominee will be accepted: multiple votes for the same nominee from the same E-Mail address will all be disqualified. And every year we say this, but every year someone tries it on and it has already been attempted this year: please note that blatant attempts at organising mass votes - for example asking workmates or forum members to vote en masse - are easily identified and all such votes will be disallowed as they have been in previous years. Concerted attempts at vote-rigging will result in the nominee being removed from the shortlist.


Swift snippets.
15th December: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com shows what appears to us to be the front end of a dragster. More than that we do not know, but if you know more or if you would like to send your own spy picture then please drop us a line at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com. Please note that this is not part of our Spy Picture Contest.

Our two invitations to send greetings for Eurodragster.com's annual Christmas Card have resulted in two submissions. We will therefore not be posting the card just yet since it will look a bit pathetic, but if you would like to send your own Christmas greeting to go on the card then please send it to eurodragster.xmas@btinternet.com and when we have enough greetings to justify the work then we will post the card here.
©Eurodragster.com
The accolades keep on coming for 2008 FIA European Top Methanol Dragster Champion Peter Schöfer as he was honoured by the Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil Club at their Gala Night on Saturday. "Peter was awarded with a golden plate", says team member Gittli Koller. "The compere had some very special words for Peter in which he pointed out not just the horsepower of the car and the acceleration - all of other racers seemed impressed - but he also pointed out just how close good luck and bad luck, and winning and losing, can be in our high-speed sport."


Carter in miniature.
15th December: Regular readers will know that we enjoy seeing the work of talented modelmakers amongst our readership, so we were very pleased to receive this picture of the Lucas Oil / Andersen Racing Top Fuel Dragster, the latest project of reader Gareth Robinson (click on picture for large version).

"I've always liked to build models which as far as I'm aware are not available or are different from others", says Gareth. "So with congratulations to Andy Carter on winning the 2008 FIA European Championship I thought I would base a model on the Lucas Oil Top Fuel Dragster.

"The model was started some time before and the kit was originally Revell's Eddie and Ercie Hill Pennzoil Top Fuel Dragster. The body was incorrect for the style of AC's TF dragster. A new front end was made using the front from an older Revell kit smoothed into the new body. The sides around the cockpit were extended as well. The front and rear wings were scratch-built to match those on the real thing. Engine frame covers were built from plastic sheet to match those on the real thing.
©Eurodragster.com
"Once I was happy with the body and chassis they were painted accordingly. The livery is a rather modified Slixx decal sheet which is in production to build Morgan Lucas' Top Fuel Dragster. The engine has received a few detail items such as a replica carbon fibre bug catcher (borrowed from a model of Tony Schumacher's US Army Top Fueller). It also has header sensors and wiring and a scratch-built throttle linkage with fuel lines. The model is not yet finished as I'm in the middle of producing the remaining graphics to complete the look.

"Future projects on the drawing board are the Wright Racing Top Fuel Dragster, Dennis Priddle's JWR Chevy Monza, Kenneth Lorentzon's Mongoose Performance Exhausts Fuel Coupe plus lots more."


Hardcore Street DVD review.
15th December: Hardcore Street 2008 is the fifth year of Power Point Communications' Street Eliminator DVDs, this year with new class sponsor B&H Automotive, writes Simon:

Round one was the Easter Thunderball / Snowball. The Street Eliminator teams have invested a lot of time and money: Colin Lazenby talks about his winter refresh of the ex-Gordon Appleton engine. Unfortunately on the first run a pinion broke and took out his drive shaft. Jerry Charles suffered a blowback on the carburettor which hurt the manifold. On the positive side, even this early in the year, it was clear that Steve 'Splinter' Nash in the Cougar and Steve Pateman's Calibra would be the class of the field.

The sun came out for the Big Bang and Steve Nash was aiding Colin in stripping down his Rossler transmission. Later the '56 suffered serious engine damage after a nitrous explosion at the top end. Pete Smith and Ray Tucker ran their beautiful blown 'Vettes alongside each other. Jeff Meads says the 565 ci engine in his Pop is good for 850 hp, making for some interesting launches. Jon Webster got Ian Jackson's Vette into the low eights after a spin on the burnout at the Thunderball. Splinter's 7.803 was good for a new ET record and the win against Steve Pateman.

The Springspeed Festival at Shakespeare County Raceway showed the class in fine form and faring well on the cruise in Chipping Camden. Splinter went 7.77 in qualifying and in eliminations Ray Comer upset Steve Pateman. At the SPRC Summernationals, Jon Webster was back in the MG SV and in the eights straight away. Jeff Meads got the power to the ground with an 8.52. Steve Pateman ran his first sevens of the year, now launching straighter. The final was superb with the win going to the Calibra over the Cougar.

At Bug Jam Martin Taylor's '52 Beetle joined the fray running a 10.39. The finale again went Steve Pateman's way after Splinter broke. A month later, the Open Sports Nationals saw the Cougar's gearbox mended. Wilf Stacey ran a PB 8.86. In a great race, Jeff Meads headed skywards and then overcame Ron Haslett's huge lead. This meeting also saw the recovery of Jon Webster from his 9.50 Bike spill to come back in the next round of Street Eliminator. In the final, Splinter had lady luck on his side and won with nitrous problems after Steve Pateman suffered a blowback.
©Eurodragster.com
A dyno segment features Colin Lazenby at Sonny's in the USA. I won't spoil it for viewers, but this scene alone is worth the price of the DVD.

The final round was at the UK National Finals with Colin fully repaired and with a Everest-sized mountain motor. The Championship was very tight and Steve Pateman, chasing Splinter for the title, qualified #1. Then in round one Moose Hollingworth with a new twin turbo setup upset Splinter who had problems. Steve Pateman overcame Ian Hook, Colin Lazenby and a wild Jeff Meads to win the event and the Championship in spite of mechanical issues in the final.

It was a memorable season for the close racing between the two Steves. The DVD is well-produced and cameras mounted on the bank at the finish line at Santa Pod give a good impression of the 180+ mph speeds being attained regularly by the faster cars.

Hardcore Street 2008 is a production of Power Point Communications and can be obtained direct from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 UK p+p.


Web site updates.
15th December: In the latest entry in his exclusive Racer Blog, Luke Bennett of the Bennett Racing blown-alcohol altered team tells a very amusing story from a recent visit to the pub with a fellow NFAA team member. You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the Racer Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
©Eurodragster.com

Contest: I.D. the Spy Picture 2.
13th December: Eurodragster.com has teamed up with a race team whose identity we cannot yet reveal to offer a T-Shirt per picture for three pictures as a prize in our latest contest.

Every few days we will post a spy picture of the race team's car together with a clue, and all you have to do is to write to us that week and identify the racer concerned. You get nothing for showing off and telling us what type of race car it is. You should be able to work out the racer's identity if you have been paying attention to Eurodragster.com recently.

Here is the second picture, and the second clue is: this team may have an advantage at Mantorp Park.
©Eurodragster.com
If you entered after the first picture was published then you can enter again now, either with the same answer or a different answer to that you gave last time.

How to enter: If you'd like to take a shot at identifying the owner of this car and winning one of their team T-Shirts, then send an E-Mail to
eurodragster.win@btinternet.com specifying Spy Picture Contest as the subject and telling us (1) the name of the racer; (2) your own name; (3) your address; and (4) your T-Shirt size.

This contest is open to all of our readers wherever you are located and however old or young you are. For obvious reasons we will not reveal or contact the winners until the contest closes at 23:59 UK on Tuesday 23rd December. Good luck!


Judge the book by its cover!
11th December: 2008 FIA European Top Fuel Dragster Champion Andy Carter and his PR Dan Welberry of Eurodragster.com News sponsor 3t Creative have kindly given Eurodragster.com readers another sneak preview of their forthcoming book King of Europe. At right are the front and back covers of the book, which is to be launched at Autosport International in January (click for large version). The spectacular night launch picture on the front cover was taken by none other than Eurodragster.com Photo Editor Roger Gorringe at this year's Auto Trader Easter Thunderball.

If you checked out our first sneak preview on 3rd December you will have read our surprise that King of Europe was not purely pictorial as we had been expecting. Dan explained that there was indeed a change of mind during the book's compilation:
©Eurodragster.com
Way back when the book was initially discussed between Andy and I, the idea was to tell the story with pictures, some text from me, Andy's personal take on events and some achievements. However, as we sat down and started going through the shots we had and got deeper into the idea, we realised that we could do a great job with a full review of each season, not only on the track but off-track events too. We really wanted to give the reader a complete picture of life on a European Top Fuel team. I think we've done a pretty good job too!

We now can't wait to have the finished product in our hands, ready for the launch at Autosport. It's taken around ten months on and off to put this together...we're looking forward to more surprised reactions!

You can find out more on Andy's web site at www.andycarter.net.


Swift snippets.
13th December: A lot of bikes and cars still run the pneumatic timer systems for their fuel and clutch controls, especially nitro machines which vibrate a lot and that can be troublesome to more sensitive and more expensive electronic systems, says Ian Turburville. "The trouble is most of the timers and components used were made by Decker Industries who went out of business making parts scarce", says Turbo. "The good news is that Lou Pavlovich has now taken over the manufacture of these parts which are available from his company DAS Services in Laguna Hills, California. If you need any parts contact Lou at DAS Services Inc on +1 949-582-3908, fax +1 949-582-8694 or E-Mail loupav@dasystems.com. The web site will be updated in the New Year with the parts but meantime just contact Lou, he knows what we use in drag racing."
©Eurodragster.com
Hard on the heels of an attempted mass vote for one of the SPRC Best-Appearing Bike nominees - and despite Thursday's warning - comes an attempt at a mass vote for one of the Best-Appearing Car nominees. To those responsible: those collating the votes know every trick in the book, the rules are clear, and you are wasting your time. It will be the perpetrators, not SPRC, who have to explain to their friends why they have been ejected from the vote. You have been warned.


PMR hold prices for 2009.
13th December: Still looking for that ultimate Christmas present, the type that money usually cannot buy? Well now you can, and the prices are held at 2008 rates, despite everything else becoming more expensive: Paul Marston Racing's Passenger Rides are still the same great value for money, with some spaces still available in 2009. The experience of a lifetime is just moments away for yourself or your partner.

Do you want more...do you want to learn to drive? Paul Marston's Drag Race Driving School can make all your dreams come true, strapped into the real deal, from half-day tasters to a full day behind the wheel of a 650 hbp monster. Learn from Championship-winning instructors. Just form an orderly queue!

Paul Marston Racing's promise of no price increases in 2009 covers the infamous passenger rides, Drag Race School courses and race car rental packages. If you have any enquiries then do not hesitate in contacting PMR at office@pmracing.fsnet.co.uk or call Paul Marston on 020 8597 4575 or mobile 07831 650230.
©Eurodragster.com

Badass girl's new badass toy.
11th December: UK Super Pro ET racer Paula Atkin has continued her loyalty to the Ford brand as she and husband Stan have acquired a 2004 Mustang previously run in IHRA Pro Stock by Brian Gahm. Paula and Stan will be testing the car in 2009 before returning to the full UK National Super Pro ET Championship in 2010.

"The Mustang was built by Jerry Haas and was a showcase for John Kaase engines", Stan Atkin told Eurodragster.com. "The car won two IHRA Championships and was first into the 6.4s, 6.3s and 6.2s and held IHRA Pro Stock speed record for some considerable time. Brian Gahm and his team now have a late-model Mustang which isn't as quick as this car. We bought it from Kurt Heinz who contested four races with their own Kaase engine but then decided to get a new Haas car. We went to Texas for a look at the car and Paula was instantly impressed by the build and maintenance quality of the chassis and by the carbon fibre body. So we purchased the Mustang as a roller. The funny thing is that we once saw the car racing at Rockingham and I thought "I'd like to own that", but I never thought we would!"

The plan is to run the Mustang with the 500 ci hemi Ford built by Clive Bond which powered Paula and Stan's legendary Ford 100E into the sevens. "It's a new learning curve for us both", said Stan. "We plan to step up a bit and to put some nitrous in the motor. We will carry on in Super Pro ET, we hope to run in the 7.2s but we want to run as quickly and safely as possible. Clive Bond built us a great engine and we would like to say Thank You to Clive and to Kev Cerasale who were a lot of help with the 100E I am sure that they will help with the new car."

Paula and Stan will be testing next season. "It's our twenty fifth wedding anniversary next year and we had planned to sit the year out", said Stan. "But we will attend test days to get used to the car and then race in 2010. Neither of us would be comfortable going straight into competition with an unfamiliar car. But Paula is already excited about it!"
©Eurodragster.com
Eagle-eyed readers looking at the full-sized version of the car will have noticed Paula's name already on the windows. Stan told us that this was a birthday surprise and was executed by their good friend Mark Gredzinski on a sneaky visit whilst Paula's back was turned. "We will have the car repainted, but we are investing in the motor first", said Stan.

As for Paula and Stan's Ford 100E, it was last seen on stage in the non-speaking but crucial role of Greased Lightning in a theatrical production of Grease, after being purchased by John and Colin Gill specifically for that purpose.

"We were at a race last year sitting in the rain thinking about going home when we had a phone call asking if the 100E was still for sale", said Stan. "The next day John and Colin came along to our home and took a look at the car. They are really nice people. They bought the car as it was exactly what they were looking for. They asked if we minded if they put the car on stage and of course we didn't. We went to the dress rehearsal of their production and it was very good indeed.

"The 100E will be for sale again shortly and I think that there are two or three parties interested."

Stan added that if you are looking for stocking fillers then you can still buy one of the team's excellent T-Shirts with the 100E on the front and the girlie with the shotgun and the 'Badass girls' slogan on the back. The T-Shirts are £8 plus p+p and can be ordered from Stan on 07763 122141.


Smax's 2009 ride.
11th December: Smax Smith, former European Top Fuel Champion now living in Canada, will be driving Bob Leverich's Top Fuel Dragster in 2009.

Smax is well-known and respected in the international racing fraternity, having driven Top Fuel and nitro Funny Cars in Europe, Canada, and the US. In 2008 he drove the Leverich car at IHRA National meets in Ontario, Michigan, and New Hampshire. His British charm and enthusiastic personality make him very popular with the fans and he is an exceptional spokesman for drag racing and his team.

Bob Leverich has been racing dragsters for decades and ran in the Top Alcohol class for years. He moved to IHRA Top Fuel in 2006 and had some success, winning $16,000 and getting national TV exposure on the Speed channel. Rules changes caused a lot of adjustment, and 2007 was spent testing. In 2008 the team attended six of the ten National meets and got solidly into the 5.50s with a very conservative tune-up. With Smax driving full-time, Bob can concentrate on being the team owner and manager. Bob's son Gary Leverich is the Crew Chief and has over ten years' experience with alcohol and nitro dragsters.

This is admittedly a budget operation, with volunteer crew and a few associate sponsors. They aren't going to win the Championship and can't justify a major sponsor. That said, professional racing is show business, and Leverich Racing is part of the show. The car has been seen in person by thousands of spectators and by millions on TV. The team's objective is to fill out the field and put on a show for the fans, and hopefully make expenses. More associate sponsors with cash, parts, or supplies would help tremendously. In return, they would get a tax write-off and their logo on a Top Fuel Dragster, one of the ultimate race cars.
©Eurodragster.com

Flame tattoo on the back burner.
11th December: UK blown-alcohol altered racer Joe Bond has been in touch to thank everyone who congratulated the Nuthin' Fancy team on their first six, which Joe clocked at the UK National Finals at Santa Pod Raceway.

"It was quite an occasion and we really appreciate it after all the problems and damage we had", says Joe. "I did say I'd get flame tattoos to match the car once I run a six, and again when I run 200 mph. However the money for that will have to go towards a new clutch after the last one expired on the six second pass, but I'm going to get it done!
©Eurodragster.com
"We have an engine for sale to fund our 2009 season. It's the motor we ran in the altered in 2006 and 2007, but before that the engine was in our dragster, and before that it was in Barry Sheavills' Top Methanol Dragster. The engine can run well into the sixes in a dragster, and has run low sevens in an altered, so is an ideal motor for Super Pro ET, Supercharged Outlaws etc. If you are interested then please get in touch through our web site and I can go into more detail about what's inside."

As well as details on the motor, the team's web site at www.nuthinfancyracing.co.uk has been updated with a UK National Finals report as well as being treated to a general tidy-up.


Swift snippets.
11th December: We would like to wish a very Happy Birthday for Tuesday to our good friend, track announcer, honorary Eurodragster.com staff member, Helle Hansen mannequin and all-round good guy Christer Abrahamson. Hope that you had a great day Christer. We won't tell all the nice people which birthday it was but if they think Super Street Tree they can get an idea.
©Eurodragster.com
First and only warning, could those behind the attempted mass vote for one of the SPRC Best Appearing Bike nominees please stop it immediately. You know who you are, we know who you are, the rules are clear, and that nominee won't be very happy if you get them thrown out of the vote.


Hot Rod Drags DVD review.
11th December: Power Point Communications' Hot Rod Drags 2008 DVD follows up last year's production, writes Simon:

It's the NSRA's annual weekend out so there is much evidence of immaculate Hot Rods and Americana that you would not see at other meetings. This adds greatly to the atmosphere of the event.

Compared with 2007 the weather was not so kind to the organisers and spectators this year, as evidenced by puddles around Shakespeare County Raceway, but the crowds were not deterred and there was plenty of track time for racers.

Paul Venners is the commentator with slightly less to do because of the RWYB nature of the event. This means the noises around and on the track are much more evident - and what a variety of sounds there are.

The groups racing include members of Nostalgia Fuel Altered Association, Street Eliminator (Andy Frost with an incredible 7.55/192), Outlaw Flat Four, Wild Bunch, Gasser Circus, Flathead Meltdown, Outlaw Anglia, Mopar Muscle Association, Surrey Muscle and Taz Racing. With a huge RWYB field, the diversity of machinery is superb and the pre-1973 rule is adhered to fairly strictly.
©Eurodragster.com
There are plenty of shots around the pits and different angles of launches so the variety in this DVD is greater than offerings that concentrate on pure racing. The burnout count alone is impressive. At night the Cacklefest is impressive with an opportunity to see Wendy Baker's Time Machine nostalgia flopper.

There are flashbacks to the Billing Fun Run introduced by John Price. John talks to Alan Mearns about his Willys Pickup truck and Paul Kennedy's ex-US blown Hemi-engined Willys coupe. There is also footage from the Outlaw Anglia action at the Nostalgia Nationals.

Hot Rod Drags 2008 is a production of Power Point Communications and can be obtained direct from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 UK p+p.


Web site updates.
11th December: Due to popular demand, the HKS Drag Series has now got its very own forum where you can talk about drag racing Japanese cars, writes Rick Cuthbert. "It's an ideal way for racers to contact each other, discuss racing, share pictures, buy and sell performance parts (and even whole vehicles), and post up ideas and thoughts on the series", says Rick. "The forum can be found at www.santapod.co.uk/forums and is linked from the official HKS Drag Series web site. Please sign up and say hello! With your involvement, this will become a valuable resource for anyone taking part in or following the series."
©Eurodragster.com

Bangers and Trash to the sun.
11th December: If you're bored of beach holidays and sick of city breaks, and want to try a holiday with a difference whilst helping to raise massive amounts of money for charities, why not try a banger rally? It might not be the first idea on most people's mind when thinking about where to go next year, but you'll meet people from all walks of life, see parts of Europe you wouldn't otherwise get to see, and have a great time while you're at it.

Bangers and Trash are running their inaugural rally in April 2009. Titled Run For The Sun it involves a huge group of people in cars which are otherwise destined for the scrapyard, driving in convoy through magnificent countryside and interesting little towns. Each team is encouraged to dress up their car and themselves, which leads to much amusement and intrigue from the locals.

The Run For The Sun event leaves Calais on the 23rd April 2009 and arrives four days later near Malaga in Spain, so you can top up your tan when you finish, before either driving back or disposing of the car at the destination. In the process, Bangers and Trash hope the event will raise up to £20,000 for charity.

With a group of you filling the car, it's a great, cheap and inventive way to fill a long weekend, make new friends and bond with those you already know.

More details can be found at www.bangersandtrash.co.uk or by contacting Luke Atterbury on 07846 954349 or E-Mail luke@bangersandtrash.co.uk.
©Eurodragster.com

Contest: I.D. the Spy Picture 1.
9th December: Eurodragster.com has teamed up with a race team whose identity we cannot yet reveal to offer a T-Shirt per picture for three pictures as a prize in our latest contest.

Every few days we will post a spy picture of the team's car together with a clue, and all you have to do is to write to us and identify the racer concerned. You get nothing for showing off and telling us what type of race car it is. You should be able to work out the racer's identity if you have been paying attention to Eurodragster.com recently.

So here is the first picture, and the clue is: you have already seen this car.
©Eurodragster.com
How to enter: If you'd like to take a shot at identifying the owner of this car and winning one of their team T-Shirts, then send an E-Mail to
eurodragster.win@btinternet.com specifying Spy Picture Contest as the subject and telling us (1) the name of the racer; (2) your own name; (3) your address; and (4) your T-Shirt size. One entry per E-Mail address please, although if you enter this week then you will be able to enter again when we publish the next picture and clue, and again after the next picture.

This contest is open to all of our readers wherever you are located and however old or young you are. For obvious reasons we will not reveal or contact the winners until the contest closes at 23:59 UK on Tuesday 23rd December. Good luck!


Feature: 2008 SEMA Show.
9th December: The latest in our occasional series of Features in association with John Woolfe Racing is Roger's report and pictures from the recent SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The Show attracted a lot of very interesting and unusual exhibits which you can check out in the gallery attached to the Feature.
©Eurodragster.com
You can take a look at Roger's SEMA Show report and pictures by clicking here or by clicking on the Features, Interviews, Tributes link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.


Neergaard goes shopping.
9th December: Danish Top Fuel Dragster racer Stig Neergaard is all set for a serious assault on the 2009 FIA European Top Fuel Dragster Championship after going on what appears to have been a pretty hefty spending and training spree in the USA.

"A trip to the USA was set up for October", Stig told Eurodragster.com. "It started with a visit to Donnie Holbrook where purchases and investments were planned for the upcoming season. An order was placed for new parts including for the new car.

"After that we turned to Alan Johnson for flow testing of our fuel system to correct small errors. We had some problems over the 2008 season with blower belts breaking at approximately 950 feet and burned head gaskets. Part of the problem was in the clutch and a solution was found.

"Finally we went to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for four days of training with AJ and his team. They did a great job which can be seen from their Championship. Congratulations to Tony Schumacher and the entire crew for that.

"We are now ready to face the new season with seven sets of new AJ Stage 5 heads and seven TFX motors, updated fuel system, new AJ clutch system and set-up and support from Alan Johnson to go for the Championship in the coming season."


Another honour for Schöfer.
9th December: A few weeks after being fêted by the Mayor of his home town of Moosburg, 2008 FIA European Top Methanol Dragster Champion Peter Schöfer was honoured again by the German Motorsport Association (DMSB) in a ceremony at the Essen Motor Show.

"Pat and I flew to Düsseldorf Airport early in the morning, where we were fittingly picked up and driven to the Show by a German racing colleague in Shelby Mustang", says team member Gittli Koller. "What a nice surprise!

"At Essen many famous motorsports personalities had been invited by the DMSB for their ceremony honouring German, European and World Champions in car and bike motorbike categories. A very emotional moment of the event was when Bernd Schneider stepped back from his active racing career.

"The event was held in a wonderful atmosphere with a delicious meal and then the racers got their trophies on the hall's stage. When Peter got his trophy the presenter said "This man from Bavaria drives a car with 3,500 horsepower...has anyone any more to offer?"."


The return of Frosty.
9th December: The UK's Andy Frost has announced that he plans to return to B&H Automotive Street Eliminator racing next year. Andy has spent the last couple of years in Comp Eliminator and Super Pro ET but the decision on tyres at the recent Street Eliminator AGM decided Andy to return to street-legal competition.

"2008 wasn't the best year we've had", says Andy. "Along with the rain and breakages it wasn't until the last couple of races that we actually got into our stride, then all too late the season ended. The 7.41 and 197 mph we ran is nowhere near the potential of the combination that we have, and we will be making changes for even more power for next year. Unfortunately the chassis tag will limit the car in class racing until such time as the budget allows change. Of course outside of class racing we wont be limited at all!

"2009 will hopefully bring us a little more cheer. The wise decision by Street Eliminator to allow the MT radials back into the class means that we will be going back to our roots on radials and pump fuel. Hopefully it will be for the full tour but as I am heavily involved with a big twin turbo project I might have to pass on a meeting or two.

"My decision to go back to Street Eliminator has already brought a new sponsor on board. Wilson Manifolds from the USA will be supporting our effort in Street Eliminator next year. We have also become the official UK dealer for their excellent EFI, Nitrous and intake products. To begin with we can offer a five per cent discount on all retail prices through to February 2009. Just give me a call on 01902 344004 to place your order. Our team thanks Wilson Manifolds for getting involved with our efforts.

"Of course all of our other sponsors are also happy that we are going back to our roots. We will shortly be announcing our 2009 list of sponsors and race dates on our web site at www.redvictor1racing.co.uk."


NDRS Champions awarded.
9th December: This year's Nordic Drag Racing Series prize ceremony took place on Saturday at the Arlandia Hotel in Stockholm, compered by our good friend and honorary Eurodragster.com staff member Christer Abrahamson. Congratulations to this year's Champions:

NDRS Super Street: Thomas Hägg, Sweden
NDRS Street Bike: Jyrki Sinisalo, Finland
NDRS Super Gas: Christer Uhlin, Norway
NDRS Super Gas Bike: Timo Savolainen, Finland
NDRS Super Comp: Ari Pietilä, Finland (right)
NDRS Super Comp Bike: Jonas Sundström, Sweden
NDRS Stock/Superstock: Tarmo Mikkola, Finland
NDRS Comp: Per-Erik Lindgren, Sweden
Bilsport Junior Dragster: Ludvig Perés, Sweden
Bilsport Pro Mod: Robert Joosten, The Netherlands

The prestigious Svensk Dragracing Eagle Award was awarded posthumously to Peter Frost.

This year's NDRS had 539 participants from ten countries.

Picture courtesy and ©Stefan Boman


PDRC/York Raceway back HoF.
9th December: The British Drag Racing Hall Of Fame in Association with US Automotive, are proud to announce the addition of Pennine Drag Racing Club/York Raceway to its list of sponsors.
©Eurodragster.com
Pennine Drag Racing Club and York Raceway have been running Drag Racing events since the 1970s and is one of three major drag racing locations in the UK. With world class TSI Timers equipment, and a great friendly Northern atmosphere, the Club and track run a number of series, with races to Run What You Brungs catering for all such as the PDRC Northern Drag Racing Championship bracket series, the Hot Rod Challenge, the American Super Stock series, and the 2NZ series for tuners and modifiers.

PDRC/York Raceway have introduced many of today's competitors into the sport, and form a very important part in the development of drag racing in the UK. At York Raceway, spectators become participants and participants become racers.


Race cars sought for Essex Expo.
9th December: Eurodragster.com News sponsor Paul Marston Racing are proud to announce that they have again been approached by the organisers of the Arena Essex Oval Expo to organise the drag racing presence at the next Expo on 18th-19th January 2009.

"The Expo is just around the corner now and sees plenty of track action over two action packed days", says Paul Marston. "It features the season opener of the Rolling Thunder Series on Saturday night then continues on Sunday morning with a full day of exhibition races, highlighting a great variety of classes including the awesome Drag Race Demos. This will also be your first opportunity to pick up both the Santa Pod Raceway and Shakespeare County Raceway 2009 calendars. Along with sampling short Oval Racing at its very best, the Swap Meet and traders' stands, it's a great day out.
©Eurodragster.com
"For the drag racing display we are looking for a couple of race cars for static display both days in the Main Marquee, and two or three race cars for demos on the tarmac quarter mile oval on Sunday. All race cars would be considered, but self-starting doorslammers are more practical for demos due to the conditions and pit space available.

"For more information please call me on 07831 650230 or E-Mail office@pmracing.fsnet.co.uk."


Web site updates.
9th December: Our good friend Pete Roberts has updated his web site The Pod - A Look Around with an album of on-track shots from 2008 which you can address directly at www.podlook.co.uk/album/index.html. If you've never visited Pete's site then it is well worth a look as it features unique panoramas from Santa Pod Raceway as well as the aforementioned album, daily wallpaper, the history of USAF Podington, audio of a 300 mph run by Sammy Miller, and more. Check it out at www.podlook.co.uk.
©Eurodragster.com
Swedish Top Fuel Dragster racer Micke Kågered probably smiled quietly to himself when he elected not to contest this year's Auto Trader Easter Thunderball, but the snow got the Bahco Express in the end as you can see in the latest update on Micke's web site at www.kagered-racing.com.


SPRC Perpetual Awards week 3.
7th December: Once again Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are teaming up to give Eurodragster.com readers the chance of input to the
SPRC Perpetual Awards, which will be presented at the joint APIRA/SPRC Dinner Dance and Trophy presentation on Saturday 7th February 2009.

For seven of the eight 2008 season awards, a shortlist has been decided upon for which votes can be submitted by E-Mail. There are eight awards in all: this week's category is Best Appearing Bike. Nominations are also being accepted for the Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy. The votes of Eurodragster.com readers will be taken into consideration when the SPRC Committee decides upon the winners.

The SPRC Committee's shortlist for Best Appearing Bike is as follows:

Scott Baldwin, Team Twiglet Super Street Bike
Go to vote page

Ivan Birch, Ignorance With Conviction III Comp Bike
Go to vote page

Bob Brooks, Yellow Metal Comp Bike
Go to vote page

Les Harris, Tilly III Supertwin Gas
Go to vote page

Gary Jones and Dave Friend, Jones and Friend Funny Bike
Go to vote page

Chris Mott, Cupit and Mott Racing Supertwin Gas
Go to vote page

To see larger pictures and to place your vote, go to the official SPRC Perpetual Awards page which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the SPRC Perpetual Awards vote link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page.
©Eurodragster.com
The Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy, for which votes are also now being taken, was first awarded to Santa Pod Raceway's late Chief Marshal, Alex Brachtvogel, in 2001 to mark his outstanding contribution to Santa Pod Raceway and the sport as a whole. After Alex's death the trophy was named in his memory and continues to be awarded for contribution to drag racing. There is no shortlist for the Alex Brachtvogel award. Nominations are invited from Eurodragster.com readers for racers, race officials, track and safety crews, club officials, media, or anyone else who has contributed to the sport. Last year the trophy was awarded to SPRC Chief Starter Ian Marshall. Again see the official web page for more details or E-Mail your nomination to sprc.awards.2008@btinternet.com specifying SPRC Alex Brachtvogel Trophy nomination as the subject and your nomination in the body of the E-Mail.

Voting is per category, so if you vote for Best Appearing Bike today then you will be able to vote for next week's category, which is Most Professional Appearing Team, and so on.

For each of the Awards, one vote per E-Mail address per nominee will be accepted: multiple votes for the same nominee from the same E-Mail address will all be disqualified. And every year we say this, but every year someone tries it on: please note that blatant attempts at organising mass votes - for example asking workmates or forum members to vote en masse - are easily identified and all such votes will be disallowed as they have been in previous years. Concerted attempts at vote-rigging will result in the nominee being removed from the shortlist.


Four-cylinder beast unleashed.
7th December: Frankie Apap writes from Malta to let us know that the Apap Bros dragster has made its first test runs at Hal Far Raceway:

It was so hard for all of us to finish the dragster, but we all belived that we would finish it this year. After two days of testing the car was working perfectly, but due to rain we had only two days for testing at the Run What You Brung event in November. After only two slow test runs the transmission broke into lots of pieces.

We were so down after that happened because after the practice runs we thought that we would race at the last MDRA event of the year. We wanted to prove a lot of things, and what made us most sad was that people had come to watch us race from the UK. I will never give up even though we are in a difficult situation we will come back much harder next year with our state of the art Apap Bros dragster with itsa four cylinder beat.
©Eurodragster.com
Many thanks as always go to our head mechanic and tuner Mario 'DJ', Maurizio Fenech - engineering, Joe Scicluna - sheet metal, Kenneth Degiorgio - transport, Jonathan - general stainless steel, Gorg 'Bux Bux' - autopaint, Alan - Daytona spray painting, Franco Catania, Antione Azzopardi, Nikolai Aqulina, and our future driver my nephew Manwel Galea.


NGMotorsport season review.
7th December: UK Super Pro ET racer Nick Good and the NGMotorsport Race Team's 2008 season was a mix of highs and lows: the lows being the appalling weather suffered by everyone at all the big events this year and the highs being some decent results when the sun did put in an appearance:

We missed the Easter Thunderball due to parts not arriving in time, although the event coverage on Eurodragster.com helped to convince us this may have been a blessing in disguise! The FIA Main Event in May was our first chance to try the dragster with its new Steve Schmidt Donovan short motor. After a practice launch on Friday and a careful checkover of everything, the car was ready saturday for its first full pass, maybe we could break into the sixes? We were blown away with the 6.75 timing ticket. This made all the hard work and investment over the winter worthwhile. Eliminations were unfortunately a washout, but we left knowing we had the speed we wanted.

The SPRC Summernationals proved to be a landmark event for the NGMotorsport team. After two and a half seasons of trying we achieved what we had set out to do, we got our first event win. The weather was kind to us all weekend, although we nearly missed our opportunity to make the most of the dry conditions and warm track. Before the first qualifying session we discovered a rocker had lost a number of needle bearings, we managed to find the last of the needles and get the motor together just in time to make the last session. Sunday the crew did a great job again, servicing the car between rounds and making sure we were right on our dial in all day. A few people had told us six second cars don't win in Super Pro, so it was nice to prove some of the doubters wrong!
©Eurodragster.com
After the long summer break we were really looking forward to getting back to the Pod for the European Finals. Our sponsors were bringing thirty plus guests on the Saturday, some for their first drag racing experience, and we were feeling pretty confident we could give them something to cheer about. But this was a weekend to forget. Thankfully Santa Pod's excellent VIP and Corporate Hospitality, us firing the motor up in the pits, and the fact that they could get up close to all the cars and crews in the pits, left all the invited guests wanting to see more. All wanted to come again next year, hopefully the weather will be better for them then, it certainly couldn't have been much worse.

That just left the UK National Finals. We came into this meeting with only six full passes and two half passes on the car, and were hoping to carry on where we had left off at the Summernationals. Qualifying went well with a 6.85 on a 6.83 dial in putting us in fourth place. We got around Dave Hughes in the first round. Against Steve Green in the second round luck really was on our side. There was no way I was going to catch Steve after our chute cable shook out on the line. Unfortunately for Steve, and luckily for us, he broke out by three thousandths. In the quarters we were up against Chris Issacs in Spencer Tramm's Corrado. Although I'd had a better reaction time than Chris, we couldn't compete with the super consistency of the Corrado, losing by less than a metre at the line. It was good to finish the season with such a close race and the sun shining! Well done to Rick Cooke for winning such a tight Super Pro Championship this year, which went down to the last race of the season.

A big Thank You to everyone who contributed this season. Without the help of Bob Walker, Andy Richardson, Sean Clarke, Simon Rowland, Paul Duke, Karl Harrison and of course Hester we wouldn't be able to race, and we wouldn't have a car to race without the help of our sponsors Beovax Computer Services, Formula Tanker Rental, Hardwick Road Garage, Glas Weld Systems, Focal Point Digital, Chris Brown Body Repairs, BGC Motorsport Components, Morris Armitage and D&R Engineering.


Swift snippets.
7th December: Belinda Bull has asked us to say lots of love and a big Happy Birthday for yesterday (Saturday) to her husband, Eurodragster.com Swap Meet sponsor and engine builder Jeff Bull. Our pleasure, hope you had a good day Jeff and that you have recovered from the Man Flu.

Bob Roberts of Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Andy Robinson Race Cars has been in touch to ask if any Eurodragster.com reader has and would loan a copy of Custom Car magazine from the autumn of 2003 which includes Kev Elliott's account of a trip to Hockenheim with Andy Robinson. If you can help then please drop Bob a line at bob.roberts1@tesco.net.
©Eurodragster.com
We will be opening the traditional Eurodragster.com Christmas Card next weekend. If you would like to post a Christmas message to your fans, fellow racers or indeed anyone (Even us - Ed) then drop an E-Mail to eurodragster.xmas@btinternet.com. For ease of editing, words are preferable to pictures please.


Street Eliminator Awards.
7th December: The 2008 B & H Automotive Street Eliminator awards evening was held at the Brandon Hall Hotel in Warwickshire on 22nd November, writes Ian Hook:

An excellent three-course meal was followed by the awards ceremony itself which was MC'd as last year by the ever-enthusiastic Paul Venners. Once again the fantastic support of the class sponsors made it possible to reward many of the Street Eliminator racers for their endeavours through this exciting 2008 season and huge thanks go out to one and all for their backing in these difficult times.

The top five finishers in the Championship comprising winner (for an unprecedented fifth time) champion Steve Pateman, runner-up Steve Nash, Jeff Meads, Jon Webster and Ian Hook all took home a share of the cash awards from title sponsors B & H Automotive and associate sponsors American Car World and RPM magazines.

The podium-placed racers were presented with framed photographs of their rides in action courtesy of Eurodragster.com whilst the quickest three to the eighth over the season were rewarded with cash prizes courtesy of Steve Kellett's company Roadcool Refrigeration.

Individual round winners were presented with vouchers from Robinson Race Cars / Stroud Safety and Colin Lazenby was again honoured with the Spirit of Street Eliminator trophy and cash award from photographer Mark O'Hanlon.

Ian Hook took home the Perfect Light trophy and cash award from Webster Race Engineering / Powerpour for an incredible seventh consecutive year with a 0.037 average light. Jon Webster himself was runner-up with a 0.092 average. Jon Hollingworth made a welcome return to the class at the UK National Finals and posted a near one-second improvement on his previous best garnering in the process a set of custom crew shirts and trophy courtesy of Embroidery Solutions as the Most Improved SE racer.

Once again the championship trophies were supplied by Webster Race Engineering whilst continued support from Quarter Mile High meant that each and every driver received a DVD of the 2008 season hot off the press. The DVD is now available to the public at £14.95 and is an ideal Christmas present from www.quartermilehigh.com.

For further information on the class, photos, videos, standings and a lot more visit the class Street Eliminator web site at www.streeteliminator.com.
©Eurodragster.com

HKS Drag Series DVD review.
7th December: The Power Point Communications DVD of the second year of the HKS Drag Series shows all four 2008 rounds, held at Santa Pod Raceway, writes Simon:

Each round is indexed separately and based on broadcast TV productions with additional footage of the Flame and Thunder Show. Paul Venners is ably assisted by Maz and the commentary is clearly aimed at those new to the sport with some historic footage as an introduction.

Steve Whittaker won Pro in 2007. This tube-framed class has cars with over 1000 hp with times routinely in the eights at 170 mph plus. A piece on the technical side shows the Jerico transmission cars with different shifters and a Powerglide for Steve Whittaker. John Bradshaw was on a learning curve in 2007 but made great advances in 2008. Johnny McKeon won the Nissan Skyline-dominated Street class and explains it is more competitive since the ten-second rule was abolished and roll cage made manadatory for cars running 9.99 or better (roll bars are required for 11.99 or better). Various elements of the transmission and suspension must be stock.

Round one was the PTM Show. In his interview, Scott Whitelaw said he is underpowered in the Front Wheel Drive class and relies on his reactions and ETs in the tens. His final against CPL Racing's Guy Chamberlain's like-bodied Civic was a great race with only hundredths in it. Other winners were John Bradshaw (Pro) and Johnny McKeon (Street). In Round two at the Jap Show there were strong headwinds. Johnny McKeon had a nasty spin following fluid under the tyes and a masterly job kept the car off the wall. Jeff Rance introduced a three rotor Mazda RX8 into the Pro Class and Gary Passingham returned to the Street Class running nines off the bat and winning the class. Guy Chamberlain again won FWD over his customer Steve Knight.
©Eurodragster.com
At The Main Event John Bradshaw started what we hope will become a frequent occurrence by competing in Super Pro ET and Competition Eliminator. Later at the National Finals John ran a 7.753 to take the official record.

In a section at Re:worx at Portsmouth, Geff Rance gives a hint of how with nitrous or turbo one can get huge amounts of horsepower out of the rotary engines with which he has spent his entire racing career.

At Rotorstock, Round Three, Tamara Heyman steps into the presentation team and also included is a trip to Webster Race Engineering to look at Leon Green's new Pro class Supra which was built in only eight weeks. Steve Whittaker returned to the track and ran an incredible 7.781 in eliminations to become the first driver in Europe to put a Japanese car into the sevens. John Bradshaw had help from Andy Robinson in sorting his Skyline. Guy Chamberlain won front wheel drive, Johnny McKeon Street and Steve Whittaker the Pro division.

Round Four, the Jap Show Finale, attracted the wet stuff and this gives the opportunity to look at footage of the test day and some returnees. James Rumsey's Misubishi Evo looks awesome. Former Pro class record holder Andy Barnes' Skyline returned to the track at this event with new HKS turbos. Steve Whittaker had a huge wheelie off the line and John Bradshaw won the altitude award with his engine cover.

In the end the Champions were John Bradshaw (Pro), Johnny McKeon (Street) and Guy Chamberlain (FWD). With car counts increasing even during the 2008 season, the Japanese scene has expanded hugely in its six year life and looks set to be an increasingly important part of UK drag racing.

There is a bonus section from the Flame and Thunder meeting with shots of Steve Murty's Pirelli Backdraft wheelie truck and an awesome 6.05/257 from Roger Goring's Firestorm Jet Funny Car. Also shown is RWYB action and the race between Steve Whittaker and John Bradshaw which aimed to produce side-by-side sevens but sadly ended with Steve spinning the Supra and making contact with the concrete wall.

There is some great on-board footage with some unusual but highly effective camera mounting positions. The interviews and tech pieces are effective in getting to know the cars and drivers.

HKS Drag Series 2008 is a production of Power Point Communications and can be obtained direct from www.quartermilehigh.com for £14.95 plus £1.50 UK p+p, or from Santa Pod Raceway.


Web site updates.
7th December: Two of our Blog contributors have been in touch with updates. UK Top Methanol Dragster racer and Eurodragster.com Home and News and Perfect ET Award sponsor Derek Flynn has written the first instalment of his account of his recent trip to the USA, whilst Luke Bennett of the Bennett Racing blown-alcohol altered team tells of the team's plans for 2009. You can check out Derek's and Luke's Blogs by clicking here or by clicking on the Racer Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.
©Eurodragster.com

Swift snippets.
5th December: Those who know Eurodragster.com Photo Editor Roger Gorringe will know him as a modest guy and certainly not one to trumpet his own achievements. We are sure, though, that Roger was dead chuffed to see his picture of the Winged Express on the front page of Hot Rod New Zealand magazine and luckily we are able to share that front cover with you. Nice one Roger!

For all of you frozen drag racing fans out there, Eurodragster.com News sponsor Tireshake.com has a special offer in the form of Christmas packs with a hood and knit cap for only €30 to €35. If you have been nice and kind this year then maybe Santa Claus will give you a bonus gift! Log on to
www.tireshake.com or click on the logo at left.

UK blown-alcohol altered team Bennett Racing have updated their popular web site with some Christmas present ideas on the Merchandise page. "We have key rings, printed mugs, box canvases, mouse mats, photo pens, coasters, and fridge magnets all featuring the Relentless Fuel Altered", says Luke Bennett. "You can find them at www.bennettracing.co.uk. Unfortunately our 2008 T-Shirts have now sold out but the 2009 T-Shirt will be on its way very soon, courtesy of our T-Shirt sponsor Slick Attire."
©Eurodragster.com
Eurodragster.com News sponsor Peter Walters Race Design is offering a special Christmas design deal including logo, rendering, hero card and T-Shirt. For more details check out www.pwrd.co.uk/christmas.html.

Christine Elliott and Patrik Pers' Speedghost Fuel Funny Car team asked us to say a big Happy 50th Birthday for yesterday (Thursday) to Mark Bodimeade, otherwise known as Animal. No sooner said than done guys, hope you had a great day Animal.

We will be opening the traditional Eurodragster.com Christmas Card in a couple of weeks. If you would like to post a Christmas message to your fans, fellow racers or indeed anyone (Even us - Ed) then drop an E-Mail to eurodragster.xmas@btinternet.com. For ease of editing, words are preferable to pictures please.


Web site updates.
5th December: Eurodragster.com Site Search sponsor Hauser Racing have launched a completely redesigned web site at www.hauserracing.com. The very neat new site features news, products and services, customer car gallery, history, links and more.
©Eurodragster.com
It has been a bit of an open secret that our good friend Alan Currans has, in conjunction with Andrew Gibb, been putting together a feature describing the recovery and restoration of the famous Stripteaser Minivan competition altered for Alan's excellent Acceleration Archive web site. The feature is now available and consists of an illustrated description of the work involved together with two gallery pages of additional photos - a total of 131 pictures. You can view the Stripteaser feature via the What's New? link at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk. "Whilst writing I have two important announcements concerning the web site", adds Alan. "The first is an increase in the size of the full-size images pictures from 640 pixels' width to 1000 pixels where the resolution of the original image permits. This improvement is long overdue given the large take-up of broadband services in the country. The second point is that in these litigious, risk-averse and eco-friendly times I have been obliged to update the Home Page with a Privacy Statement together with Health and Safety and Environmental Assessments. I have endeavoured to keep these as light-hearted as possible given the seriousness of the subject matter. I strongly urge all visitors to the site to take a few moments to read these important messages."

In one of those occasional coincidences which occur in our mailbox every so often, Andrew Gibb writes to let us know that the official web site of Bill Felstead's Fester Race Cars, the company which rebuilt Stripteaser, has been updated with additional pictures. You can check out the Fester Race Cars web site at www.festerracecars.co.uk.

Editor's note: Only a quick news update today because your News Editor is worn out and needs some sleep. Tune back next time for the promised news of the first outing of the Apap Bros Racing dragster in Malta, UK Super Pro ET racer Nick Good's season review, the B&H Automotive Street Eliminator Awards Evening, a call for race cars to attend an exhibition and more, and please keep the news coming to news@eurodragster.com.


Welcome Hubraumbrothers Speedshop.
3rd December: We are very pleased to welcome Germany's
Hubraumbrothers Speedshop as a sponsor of Eurodragster.com News.

Hubraumbrothers Speedshop is run by Pat Kaiser, an engine and gearbox specialist who had an apprenticeship at Mercedes Benz. Pat specialises in the service and restoration is US cars and V8 engines. From street machines to dragsters, Pat is the man to ask in the south German area, located fifty kilometres north of Bodensee, and so also an easy place to reach for Swiss and Austrian drivers.
©Eurodragster.com
Pat had been racing a street-legal Buick Skylark but sold it last year and is now running a methanol-fuelled Keith Black-powered 1968 Camaro in Super Pro ET and is also one of the guys behind the Super Pro ET Challenge Germany. For full details of the products and services on offer from Hubraumbrothers Speedshop check out Pat's web site at www.hubraumbrothers.de or click on the logo at left.

We are very pleased indeed to welcome another continental European sponsor to Eurodragster.com extending still further the one-stop aspect of our sponsorship roster. We are sure that our readers in the south German area, and in Switzerland and Austria, will show their appreciation for Pat's support of European drag racing by considering Hubraumbrothers Speedshop.


Badbird: you have been warned.
3rd December: UK Pro Modified racer Graham Ellis has completed the transformation of his Plymouth Superbird into a trule Badbird with the purchase of two engines from Danny Cockerill.

"I have sold the ex-Gordon Appleton BAE motor which we ran last year complete with M5 blower", says Graham. "It is a very good engine but we felt that with the curve ball the weather threw us last year that we were behind where we should have been development wise.
©Eurodragster.com
"When Danny's engines became available we discussed it amongst the team and decided that we could not chance the same lack of track time this year and that we needed to have a sorted package. So a deal was done and I became the owner of two ERD Hemis one complete with PSI blower/fuel system, dyno sheets etc and one manifold-to-pan spare along with three years' worth of data. We also got an AFT clutch which is proven so that should accelerate our learning a bit.

"I'm looking forward to working with this new combination, and also looking forward to benefiting from continued engine development from Carl Spiering's ERD."


MTs back in SE.
3rd December: The UK's B&H Street Eliminator held their Annual General Meeting a few hours before their Awards Evening, and racer Ian Hook says that the big news for the class in 2009 is the re-introduction of the controversial Mickey Thompson Drag Radial tyre for a one-season trial.

"The expanded use of this type of rubber in other street related classes as well as on many RWYB cars, coupled with the many internet comments that there were a lot of potential racers being kept out of the class because of the current tyre regulation,s persuaded the existing class members to vote the MT DR back in", says Fatty. "It must be stressed that this is a one-year experiment and that a review will take place at next year's AGM. If you are one of the racers who has wanted to race in Street Eliminator on this tyre, now is your chance to show that the right decision has been made. Contact information is available on the class web site at www.streeteliminator.com. It is hoped that this change will encourage more and a greater variety of racers and vehicles to take part in the SE adventure.

"Minor changes were made to the regulations concerning the amount of fuel taken on board during the Cruise ensuring that, in these days of fluctuating petrol costs, the volume required remains consistent. Changes were also made to the points system rewarding racers with additional points for every qualifying pass thus encouraging a more complete show throughout the whole of future events.

"Full class rules are readily available in the MSA White Book. However, should anybody have a specific question on class rules and regulations or be in need of any advice on preparing a car to compete in the quickest and fastest street legal class this side of the Pond, just ian.hook@blueyonder.co.uk to get in touch with me. Be it technical or paperwork-related I look forward to talking to potential new racers and to helping get you on the track!"
©Eurodragster.com

King of Europe sneak preview.
3rd December: Regular readers of Eurodragster.com will know that three-time and current FIA European Top Fuel Dragster Champion Andy Carter has been working on a book, King of Europe, which is due to be launched at Autosport International in January. Andy and Dan Welberry of Eurodragster.com sponsor 3tcreative have kindly given Eurodragster.com a sneak preview.

We were allowed a look at the chapter covering 2004, which was Andy's second Championship year. The first surprise we got was that there was a lot more text than we were expecting. We had understood that the book was to be mainly a pictorial with few words but either we got the wrong end of the stick or Andy had a change of heart, most likely the former.

The book is still, as expected, lavishly illustrated with a good mixture of on- and off-track shots but having Andy's take on each race is a real bonus and makes good reading. Andy told us that, as with his Blog, he intended to be honest in the book which is refreshing in these days of anodyne PR (although that has, fortunately, mainly remained on the other side of the Pond). Andy has certainly been frank in chapter four with one shocking admission which we won't spoil for those who wish to buy the book.

Andy and Dan kindly gave us permission to post a couple of pages from chapter four of King of Europe. You can view these pages (PDF format) by clicking here for the first page of the chapter and clicking here for the last page of the chapter. Having seen these two pages we are sure that you will be as excited as we are about seeing the finished article in January.

Andy is taking preorders for King of Europe at the price of £20 plus £4.99 p+p. To place your order get in touch with Andy at cartermotorsport@hotmail.co.uk.


Swift snippets.
3rd December: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com shows, we are told, a Pro ET car under construction at what looks like the workshop of joint Eurodragster.com webcam sponsor Webster Race Engineering. "The clue is in the picture!", says our mole and indeed if you look closely enough identification is pretty simple.

Last week's spy picture of a wheel turns out to be the new front wheel of Scott Collier's Junior Drag Bike. "Graham Sykes of Sykes Engineering machined Scott's free of charge", says dad Jerry Collier. "Graham offered to do it as Scott was running the solid aluminium wheel. He that said he could make it look amazing, and he was right!"
©Eurodragster.com
Courtesy of our good friend Jon Spoard comes the news that a project is underway to open a British Drag Racing Museum at the Haynes International Motor Museum in Yeovil. Since Eurodragster.com can't be said to be on the Christmas card list of at least one of the project organisers we are not likely to receive updates direct, but you can find out more on the General Nostalgia Talk section of the forum on Jon's excellent UK Drag Racing Nostalgia web site at www.ukdrn.co.uk. With Santa Pod Raceway also planning a museum this could be an interesting but hopefully strife-free couple of years.

Whilst we are talking up Jon Spoard we must add a big Thank You to Jon for supplying us with a picture of Lee Cohen's Pop for the SPRC Perpetual Awards page for twenty four hours whilst we were digging out a shot of our own. Thanks also to Darren West of Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Power Race Graphics for his help.

Congratulations to the UK's Team Gridlock whose Go Hard or Go Home altered took Best Modified at the International Modified and Performance show at London's Alexandra Palace. The team also won runner up in the Best American section with Adam's Mustang. "It was a worthwhile show as we not only picked up some trophies but the team will be working with Torque Exhaust in 2009", says Dexter Price. "We will use their rolling road (if it will fit!) to do the off-track tuning and the car will be sporting some nice new headers courtesy of Torque Exhausts. Look out for the Torque guys at races as they will be crewing at some events". More pictures by Mark of MFpix at s440.photobucket.com/albums/qq125/teamgridlock.


The Pro ET honours list.
3rd December: Saturday's Pro ET Bash held at the Cromwell Hotel in March was well attended, and The Hoggz provided memorable musical entertainment. Awards were presented to:

Champions: Paul Baynton (UK National), Neil Hunter (SPRC), John Atkinson (APIRA)
Long Distance Award: Siw Nystad
Best Wheelie: Tig Napier
Best Appearing Car: Liz Malcolm
Newcomer Of The Year: Kim Bishop
Crew Chief Of The Year: Tom Atkinson
Hard Luck Award: Carla Pittau
Most F-ups Award: Mike Lacey
Most Spectacular Crash/Fire: Neil Hunter
Special Award For Help: Chris Newsam for Neil Hunter
©Eurodragster.com
Simon grabbed a word with Dave Cherrett, who said that he will be running with a Powerglide and transbrake for the first time in 2009, and with John Atkinson and Mark Bishop who confirmed that they are moving up to Super Pro ET next season.

A big Thank You to Carl Burton and all of the Pro ET racers for inviting the Eurodragster.com staff to the Bash.


Open Sport Nationals DVD review.
3rd December: DVD producers Power Point Communications have produced an highly-professional disk of the 2008 Open Sport Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway, writes Simon:

The Open Sports Nationals starts with shots of Outlaw Anglia and Top Fuel Bike and then coverage is on a class-by-class basis with every race shown. Super Street is first up straight into eliminations with close racing from a good-sized field. The coverage with cameras on the start line show this well a nd Bob Lees comes out the victor. In Super Gas there are plenty of breakouts, red lights and close racing. Conrad Stanley demonstrates why a throttle stop on a more powerful car can give you the advantage as you can see your competitor, in this case Mike Bentley.

Super Pro ET is also close at the finish line and the more exciting when dial-ins are closer. John Everitt does a wild burnout in the quarter final just prior to beating Dave Ward and gets to the final where Barry Giles is the victor. Outlaw Anglia is getting stronger with performances improving for a number of racers including Richard Colby and Cliff Griffin both running in the eights and Paul Wright setting the Alcopop to run high sevens and as straight as you like. Super Street shows a much increased number of racers running sevens. Mark Watkins does a wheelie to half track and still runs an 8.0. Steve Venables hunched down posture on the start line is one of the details that he has perfected and the bike has a tremendous top end charge although not enough to overcome Rich Stubbins' lead.

Dave Beck's stellar performances for a new ACU record of 7.19 give him the win the Pro Stock Bike. Competition Bike was the domain of Ivan Birch in 2008 and this meeting was no exception. Funny Bike had a diminished field at this event with the final the highlight, Chris Hall defeating Tim Blakemore. Top Fuel Bike includes a fantastic 6.49/221 from Steve Woollatt and a much improved Rene van den Berg, having solved his clutch issues.
©Eurodragster.com
Pro ET includes many close races from an enormous diversity of cars. Both Heaven & Hell cars left the start line with the wheels up. Nigel Green pulls a huge wheelie and John Atkinson runs an 8.75 on a 9.00 dial-in showing the Cortina Estate's potential. The final has Phil Toppin chasing down and catching Paul Baynton who had a good second and a half advantage on his dial-in. The Wild Bunch put on an excellent nostalgia show with the mid nine second altereds going to the final with Phil Sweeney the victor. Matt Attwood has run his eighteen-second camper van in VW Alternate engine with a nine second advantage to Andy Raw's beautiful new Funny Car, which takes the win. In VW Pro James Hodson's immaculate ten second front wheel drive Golf is the victor and the Sportsman division is Chris Bray's with clever use of the brakes and selection of dial-in times, this division being almost wholly late-bodied cars after the first round.

Team Cando were victorious with a win for Brian Huxley in Sportsman ET. 9.50 Bike includes Jon Webster's unfortunate top-end spill and here you can see the quick response of the fire and ambulance crew and Jon thankfully getting to his feet uninjured. Half an hour later he was racing again in Street Eliminator. Dave Hall took the win in 9.50 Bike. Supertwin Gas shows Chris Mott's V-Rod Harley running new personal bests in the 9.0s on the way to a dominant win. Supertwin ET is the entry level bike class and has attracted new competitors into the sport as well as providing a low cost alternative to other bike classes; Joe Elliott the victor. In Junior Drag Bike Giselle Moor is another second generation racer to taste victory. Junior Dragster is well supported and Joe Kellett is the well-deserved winner.

Additional footage is included from the weather-truncated Springspeed Nationals including incidents separately involving Simon Barlow, Kev Slyfield and Carla Pittau, these cars all back on track at the next meeting.

A couple of caveats: NFAA, Street Eliminator and Outlaw Flat Four have their own DVDs and are therefore not included. Secondly, with so much footage of track action there is no space for driver and rider interviews. This does mean that the amount of racing shown is exceedingly generous.

The production in 16:9 aspect is highly professional with accurate captions letting us know how the races progress. Paul Venners is the again an excellent commentator. The Open Sports Nationals is a production of Power Point Communications and can be obtained direct for £14.95 plus £1.50 UK postage and packing from www.quartermilehigh.com.

Editor's note: We still have a small backlog of news, with which we shall catch up on the next update. Tune back on Friday for news of the first outing of the Apap Bros Racing dragster in Malta, UK Super Pro ET racer Nick Good's season review, a smart new web site for one of Eurodragster.com's sponsors and more, and please keep the news coming to news@eurodragster.com.


2008 Christmas Gift Mart.
2nd December: If you are looking for a Christmas gift for the drag racer or drag racing fan in your life, or indeed if you fancy treating yourself, then Eurodragster.com's sponsors and contributors have the following ideas for you. For fairness we are listing items strictly in the order in which we received them:

Photographer Dave McBride is again producing a UK drag racing and muscle car calendar. The calendar comes in at 300 mm x 300 mm (twelve inches square) and features full colour pictures of everything from street Mustangs and hot rods to the Wild Bunch and Fuel Altereds. We can vouch for the quality of this item since Dave kindly sent us a complimentar ycopy. The calendar costs £11 with free p+p within the UK, and £16 including airmail for Eire, Europe and the rest of the world. For more details or to place your order check out
www.moparcalendar.co.uk.

Christmas best sellers at Eurodragster.com Home and News sponsor Andy Robinson Race Cars are Ringer's Gloves, available to order from www.robinson-race-cars.co.uk. "We have all sizes from M to XXL in basic black", says Bob Roberts. "I'm told that they are good for g*rd*n*ng as well as use in the garage so they are a gift good for all the family. Alternatively for those who are struggling to find the perfect gift we can offer Andy Robinson Race Cars gift vouchers which can be used to pay for any of the goods and services ARRC offer."

Ian Turburville is offering bargains on Simpson safety gear from crew shoes to helmets. "Check www.turboville.co.uk/turbo-7/classifieds.htm and take 17.5% off the prices of those already discounted helmets!", says Turbo. "I have put together some specials for our younger fans and drivers which would make ideal gifts at less than half price and would suit smaller ladies also! Small Simpson Pit-Pack: one small Simpson T-shirt, one small Simpson sweatshirt, one pair small Simpson Wrenchers gloves. Total just £29.99. Small Simpson Fan Pack: one small Simpson T-shirt and small Nitro Knucks gloves. Total just £14.99. Small Simpson Jr. Drag Pack: one Simpson Carbon-X long johns, one Simpson Carbon-X top, one Simpson Carbon-X balaclava, 1one pair Simpson Pro-Wrenchers gloves. Total just £99.99. Medium size Simpson Sportsman drivers pack: one two piece, two layer, nomex SFI driving suit (classic black with white arm stripes), one complete set Carbon-X underwear, one Carbon-X balaclava, one pair Simpson Wrenchers gloves. Total just £349.99. All plus shipping but no VAT! There are a limited number of these packs and only in the sizes stated. I also have stocks of the best winter protection your race or street bike or car could ever have: ACF50, the fatastic corrosion preventative produced for the aviation industry in the USA. This stuff really works, it's non-sticky, does not harm any metal, plastic, wiring, etc. You can weld straight over it and one can lasts for ages! All the top race cars and bikes use this on their bare chromoly chassis. It even smells nice! £15 plus postage for a big can! Merry Christmas and a safe new year to all our customers!"

The Pod Shop Online has been updated with the latest additions to Santa Pod Raceway's extensive and unique merchandise catalogue. So whether you're looking for a woolly hat for that up-coming ski trip, a toy for your car-mad kids, a Christmas present for the hard-to-buy drag fan in your life including clothing, models, toys and car accessories, or just stocking fillers such as key-rings, fridge magnets and stickers, you can browse for it all in The Pod Shop Online You can also now purchase 2009 Event Tickets either by telephoning the track office on 01234 782828 or on-line via the Santa Pod Ticket Shop at www.santapodshop.com. Gift Vouchers are available to be used against either admission for Santa Pod organised events or in the Pod Shop located on site. If you want your gifts in time for Christmas, order now to avoid disappointment as some stocks are limited. Orders must be received before Thursday 11th December 2008 to be dispatched in time for Christmas.


Left, above: Everything from the awesome street legal cars of the B&H Automotive Street Eliminator in Hardcore Street to the wheels-up, heads-up antics of the wildly popular Outlaw Flat Four are available on DVD from Power Point Communications at www.quartermilehigh.com. If it's the smell of nitro and methanol you're after, then take a look at the wild NFAA Fuel Altereds in action in Nitro Warriors, or for wall to wall, uninterrupted drag racing howsabout the Open Sport Nationals DVD or, for something a little different, the brand new Top Doorslammer DVD fresh from Sweden. If it's V8 muscle cars you need to get you through the winter there's the ever popular Mopar EuroNats, or for the hot rodder in you, there's the Hot Rod Drags DVD with special bonus sections from the Billing Fun Run. For fans of the Japanese drag racing scene, try the HKS Drag Series DVD: as televised on Motors TV, this DVD follows the hard fought season from these tuned to perfection, top quality machines. The HKS Drag Series DVD is available from both at www.quartermilehigh.com as well as direct from Santa Pod Raceway.

Right, above: Not just for Christmas - but anytime. Photographs of your race vehicle either for yourself, husband, wife, partner or friend from the photographic library of Eurodragster.com Photo Editor Roger Gorringe. Roger's library dates back to 1972 and comes right up to date with example galleries regularly here on Eurodragster.com. You can choose any size from a postcard to A0, and prices are always kept as low as possible. For up to date prices and details, contact Roger with your requirements via his web site at www.nitroexposure.co.uk.


Left, above: The 2009 Outlaw Anglia calendar features thirteen photos shot by Dominic Romney during the 2008 season. The high-quality A4-sized calendar is available now for around £10 depending on payment method and location. To preview and order the calendar visit www.outlaw-anglia.co.uk/2009_calendar.htm.

Right, above: It's the time of year to start thinking about presents and stocking fillers. Nostalgia Fuel Altered Association promoter Lawrie Gatehouse tells us that personally he prefers a well-upholstered, shapely leg inside black seamed stockings, "but I don't suppose people want to know about my peccadilloes, do they (No - Ed)?". The 2009 Nostalgia Fuel Altered Association calendar has been superbly produced by Dominic Romney of Modern Pics featuring all the cars with high definition photographs printed on quality coated board, in A4 size. Photographs have been supplied by Dominic, Jon Best, Jon Spoard, Ivan Sansom and Rose Hughes, who hold the respective copyrights and for which the NFAA are obliged for their permissions to reproduce. The calendars are available from www.quartermilehigh.com for £10 + £1.50 p+p. "Whilst we are all busy with mods in this the close season, it's nice to be able to gaze at the pics and think ah, but next year will be even better", says Lawrie.
©Eurodragster.com

Left, above: Whether for a racer, a sponsor or a fan, Eurodragster.com News sponsor Supercharged Images has the perfect Christmas present in the form of a stunning photographic print delivered straight to your door. Supercharged Images has a library of thousands of images covering the past three European seasons in detail and also featuring numerous shots from earlier seasons. You can search for images by racer name, class or even a specific meeting, but why not start by browsing the Classic Images section which includes such memorable moments as Peter Wacker's test flight in the '57 Pro Mod, Smax losing the clutch from the Fueller at the top end, and Freddy Fagerström with the door flying off his Pro Mod! Several of Europe's leading trackside photographers contribute to the archive and all the images are hand picked and edited giving you a choice of image sizes from A4 up to the poster sized 30 inches x 20 inches. For that extra special gift why not get your loved one their favourite image printed on a canvas? Sizes start from 40cm x 30cm and go up to 110cm x 47cm. To select your photograph and place your order check out www.superchargedimages.com.

Right, above: The holiday season is the perfect opportunity to choose and buy a little something for the drag racing fan in your life. Direct from Shakespeare County Raceway's clothing supplier Creative Stitches comes a wide range of Raceway gear featuring SCR's imaginative logo design and all attractively priced. Top sellers throughout the season were the embroidered polo shirts in both adults' and kids' sizes. Baseball hats and umbrellas were another popular item a long with pint glasses, mugs and money boxes, and as it's Christmas there is even a Shakespeare County Raceway candle for that special occasion. If you are looking for team shirts, flying jackets, tees or sweats to your design for the 2009 season then give Creative Stitches a call. To place an order call Claire on 01934 518663 or stop by www.creative-stitches.co.uk.

Still unbroadcast in the UK, the DVD set of Kings of Nitro, the Reality TV series featuring Eurodragster.com News sponsor and Top Fuel Dragster racer Urs Erbacher and the Fat Attack operation, is available from producers The Gamma Project. The DVD set includes the entire series plus a bonus episode which has not been broadcast in those countries lucky enough to receive the right satellite or cable channel. £24.99 buys you the DVD set, and p+p are free in the UK. To order your copy, check out DVD Releases at www.kingsofnitro.co.uk.

Tim of Reelvue Films has once again put together a two-DVD set of the three nitro classes in the All Harley Drag Racing Association. "These were a smash hit last year and kept us all going through the winter", says Ian Turburville. "If you want to get the perfect Christmas gift for your loved one or yourself then go to www.reelvue.com/race_disks.html. The checkout takes Paypal so it's dead easy! Tim also does DVDs of AMA Dragbike races and Prostar (as was)."


SPRC Perpetual Awards week 2.
1st December: Once again Santa Pod Racers Club and Eurodragster.com are teaming up to give Eurodragster.com readers the chance of input to the
SPRC Perpetual Awards, which will be presented at the joint APIRA/SPRC Dinner Dance and Trophy presentation on Saturday 7th February 2009.

For seven of the eight 2008 season awards, a shortlist has been decided upon for which votes can be submitted by E-Mail. There are eight awards in all: this week's category is Best Appearing Car. Nominations are now also being accepted for the Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy. The votes of Eurodragster.com readers will be taken into consideration when the SPRC Committee decides upon the winners.

The SPRC Committee's shortlist for Best Appearing Car is as follows:

Frank Bennett, Relentless NFAA altered
Go to vote page

Lee Cohen, The Devil Outlaw Anglia
Go to vote page

Graham Ellis, Pro Modified
Go to vote page

Nick Good, Beovax Computer Services Super Pro ET dragster
Go to vote page

Tim Mugridge, Super Modified
Go to vote page

Andy Raw, Volkswagen Alternate Engine
Go to vote page

To place your vote, go to the official SPRC Perpetual Awards page which you can view by clicking here or by clicking on the SPRC Perpetual Awards vote link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster page.
©Eurodragster.com
The Alex Brachtvogel Memorial Trophy, for which votes are also now being taken, was first awarded to Santa Pod Raceway's late Chief Marshal, Alex Brachtvogel, in 2001 to mark his outstanding contribution to Santa Pod Raceway and the sport as a whole. After Alex's death the trophy was named in his memory and continues to be awarded for contribution to drag racing. There is no shortlist for the Alex Brachtvogel award. Nominations are invited from Eurodragster.com readers for racers, race officials, track and safety crews, club officials, media, or anyone else who has contributed to the sport. Last year the trophy was awarded to SPRC Chief Starter Ian Marshall. Again see the official web page for more details or E-Mail your nomination to sprc.awards.2008@btinternet.com specifying SPRC Alex Brachtvogel Trophy nomination as the subject and your nomination in the body of the E-Mail.

Voting is per category, so if you vote for Best Appearing Car today then you will be able to vote for next week's category, which is Best Appearing Bike, and so on.

For each of the Awards, one vote per E-Mail address per nominee will be accepted: multiple votes for the same nominee from the same E-Mail address will all be disqualified. And every year we say this, but every year someone tries it on: please note that blatant attempts at organising mass votes - for example asking workmates or forum members to vote en masse - are easily identified and all such votes will be disallowed as they have been in previous years. Concerted attempts at vote-rigging will result in the nominee being removed from the shortlist.


ME Racing workshop update.
1st December: There is a lot going on at Mats Eriksson's ME Racing Service in Borlänge, says Lena Perés:

At the moment Mats has four Top Fuel Dragsters waiting in line for new back ends because of the new rules coming up in Top Fuel next season. One of the Top Fuel owners has been sneaking around the shop for a couple of weeks now, trying to learn as much as possible about welding and bending tubes, and of course visiting his sponsors in the area: a longtime friend and customer of ME Racing Service, Micke Kågered.

"I have been on a kind of a holiday here whilst Lars-Göran has been working on my chassis", said Micke over a cup of coffee in the Eriksson-Perés kitchen. "At the same time I have learned a lot about how a chassis works, and out of that I also got some good business so it's been a very good time for me."

What else is happening in the shop? Well, Mats has sold an engine! You should know that he has a habit of never selling anything: "It's nice to save things for the future or maybe for the museum in the future", said Mats with a smile. The old Green Goblin engine now has a really nice tune up for the new owner who is going to compete with the Pro Mod gang in a couple of years. "They are really nice guys and we welcome them to Pro Mod racing. The only thing is that the engine is now much better than when we had it, so we have to look out for these guys."

Otherwise Mats says there's not much more than keeping his own engine in shape and checking the car so that it is fit for the fight in 2009. But if we take a closer look there are actually a few things which will be new with the Green Goblin. A new body is hopefully growing at Procraft AB in Skellefteå. Mikael Anderbrant, who owns the company, originally made the body from Carl Roots' old Crown Victoria race car. This time he is going to get some help with thr roof and doors from Kenneth Holmberg at Swecomposite in Stockholm. So hopefully there's going to be a spectacular look for the fans next season.
©Eurodragster.com
We don't know anything about the design as Ray Hill as usual has a free hand to do whatever he likes with the paint, but Mats is not at all worried. "This is the guy to rely on when it comes to the look of this car", said Mats. "Nobody knows what it is going to look like, I don't think even himself Ray himself knows, but what we do know is that it's going to look stunning when it comes out on track."

The only thing that can be a problem is time, and Mats will need extra this year when it comes to son Ludvig. Ludvig is now a teenager and has grown out of his Junior Dragster, so now dad has to build a new one - it's good to have a dad in the chassis business. Ray Hill also has to lay his hands, or should we say colours, on the dragster's body. Ludvig did a very good job last season, bringing home the Swedish Championship as well as the Nordic Drag Racing Series Championship. He has also been nominated for the Bilsport Award with five other youngsters in Swedish motorsports. Are mum and dad proud or what?

Lena is very pleased to get some female company as the team welcome new crew member and Lars-Göran's girlfriend Åsa Elofsson. "Åsa is well-known as one of the supporters who come to Mantorp Park every year and do a great job to support the Green Goblin team", says Lena. "Now she is going to cheer everybody up all the time with her cheerful chat, funny stories and good business contacts."

Coming up in the very near future is Ludvig's prizegiving at the Bilsport Awards, where the team hope that he wins the Junior Award. There is also this weekend's NDRS Banquet and Prizegiving and then a flight to the PRI Show in Orlando to get some news from the big country in the west and where the Leanders Brothers are showing off their own clutch to the Americans. "But that's another story that we'll tell after the show", says Lena.


Swift snippets.
1st December: It's not very long since the UK's Danny Cockerill sold his Pro Mod but to be honest we didn't think it would be too long before we saw Danny back on the track. Danny tells us that he has acquired Andy Kirk's Super Modified Championship-winning Camaro and that he plans to contest B&H Automotive Street Eliminator after equipping the car with a 398 ci Small Block Chevy and F3 Procharger. "I can't wait to try and upset a few bods!", says Danny.
©Eurodragster.com
We would like to wish a big Happy 20th Birthday to Shelby Webster. Mum and dad Jeanette and Jon, not forgetting dog Boss, asked us to wish Shelby a great day and Jeanette tells us that Shelby is due to start her Ford 100E project soon. "It's her project, dad will be allowed to help now and again but not to choose the colour of the car!", says Jeanette. Have a lovely day Shelby.


Doing the Wild Bunch honours.
1st December: The UK's Wild Bunch held their annual Prize Presentation, in conjunction with the Supercharged Outlaws, at Drayton Manor Park on Saturday and Wild Bunch Race Co-ordinator Claire Meaddows tells us that a great evening was had by all:

The various Series winners were presented with their awards, and topping the list for the third year running were the winners of the Wild Bunch Series, the team of Tony Smith and Dave Williams, both drivers of The Cunning Plan Minivan altered. Many congratulations to them! It is Tony's fifth Wild Bunch title with Dave as Crew Chief, and Dave's third time sharing the driving honours in addition to crewing.

The Wild Bunch also have a Series for their main contingency sponsor Real Steel, and this was won by Dave Rowlands in the Destiny's Angel altered, which also won the Roy Wilding Nostalgia Race Cars Series by a country (quarter) mile!

This year, the Wild Bunch held a Challenge for the best points performance over the five MSA events they attended - the Easter Thunderball, Springspeed Festival, SPRC Summernationals, Open Sport Nationals and the UK National Finals - and the winner was Darren Law in the Wicked Lady rear-engined dragster.

Various presentations made during the evening thanking Wild Bunch Chairman Chris Hartnell, Race Co-ordinator Claire Meaddows, and web site author Ed Yates for all their hard work (Didn't Pete Yates get a trophy too? - Ed), as well as gifts for all the lovely ladies of the Bunch who do so much to support their teams. There was also a presentation to a surprised Barry Bohannon for his commentary and compering for the last several years. In addition, the winners of the Wild Bunch Special Awards were announced, and a full list can be found on the Wild Bunch web site at www.the-wild-bunch.co.uk. One award, notable to readers, was the Derek and Brenda Annable Trophy which this year went to John Price and Graham Beckwith, more recognition for their fantastic contribution to drag racing. We'll be contacting John and Graham to congratulate them personally.

The main accolade of the evening was, as always, the Don Garlits Spirit of Drag Racing Shield, the most prestigious award in the Wild Bunch, which represents sportsmanship, achievement, commitment, presentation and a host of other attributes. This was awarded to the entire Wicked Lady team. Big congratulations to them, and very well-deserved.

Many thanks to all who helped make the evening a success, and congratulations to all of our winners. We can't wait until 2009 to be back out there racing! Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy, and dry, New Year to all racers, marshals and officials, track crew, media, promoters, managers and track owners who work so hard at Santa Pod Raceway, Shakespeare County Raceway and York Raceway, for the sport of drag racing which we all love so much. Thank you all for everything you do! See you all at the sunny drags!
©Eurodragster.com

Web site updates.
1st December: If you have been around the web long enough you will recall that as long ago as 1996 your News Editor had a web site imaginatively named Tog's Drag Racing Page. TDRP had to take a back seat as Eurodragster.com took over his life but Tog is pleased to announce that his entire digital photograph library is now available again courtesy of the relatively low-maintenance Fotopic. The nearly eight thousand pictures go back to 2002 and cover not just race events and shows but closed test days, workshop visits and features for Eurodragster.com, off-track and behind-the-scene shots, and a few surprise items from Eurodragster.com's travels. You can check out Tog's photographs at www.togsdragracing.com, togsdragracing.fotopic.net or eurodragster.fotopic.net.
©Eurodragster.com


Earlier news