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Big Bang results.
24th April: Congratulations to the winners of the weekend's Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway:

Sportsman ET: Chris Creswell (16.08) 16.1487/84.39 def. Tom Atkinson (12.70) 12.7716/104.53
Lucas Oil Junior Dragster: Billy Everitt (7.99) 8.0273/75.92 def. Holley Marshall (8.29) 8.3313/76.41
VW Pro: Phil Norman (12.60) 12.6729/103.47 def. Paul Herbert (12.10) 12.3815/108.84
VW Sportsman: Tom Herbert (13.85) 14.1009/89.23 def. Carl Goldsmith (15.25) 15.3987/91.04
Outlaw Flat Four: Clarke Hillyard 12.0791/113.76 def. Lucas Daglish 13.5570/97.72
Outlaw Anglia: Colin Millar 7.9479/169.82 bye, Jedd Guy shut off
Nostalgia Super Stock: Thomas Watkins (9.50) 9.5267/136.85 def. Mike Lacey (9.34) 10.3735/96.22 DQ red
Front Wheel Drive Series: Kiel Priestman 9.2103/161.90 def. Paul Atkinson 29.2864/33.70

8.50 Bike: Jake Mechaell 8.6100/156.95 def. Ian Chrichlow 8.5946/154.70 (0.0064)
9.50 Bike: Lewis Burgess 9.5452/133.63 def. Richard Sawatzki 9.7067/140.79
ET Bike: Phil Pratt (9.03) 9.1061/146.88 def. Gary Hester (10.57) 10.5674/125.44 DQ b/o

Congratulations also to Sportsman ET racer Pete Creswell who won the Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award with a 0.0005 Reaction Time in Q1, and to VW Sportsman racer Aaron Beales who won the Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supporting
Bloodwise with a 14.2005 on 14.20 dial-in in Q1. Both Awards have been reset to £50 for this weekend's APIRA Springspeed Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway.

You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored live reports and galleries by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.


APIRA event entry update.
24th April: Many thanks to Jerry Cookson for passing us Version 3 of the official entry list for next week's APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Entry is still open and you can download the official entry forms from the track's web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.com. Racers are encouraged to pay their entry fee via Bacs rather than credit card or cheques, as this cuts down on administrative charges and time; SCR's account details can be found on the entry form.

If you have any queries about APIRA Springspeed Nationals entry then please contact Shakespeare County Raceway at shakespearecountyraceway@gmail.com or call 01789 720180 (outside the UK +44 1789 720180).


Swift snippets.
24th April: We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to Team Heaven and Hell and Earsplittenloudenboomer crew member and Honorary Eurodragster.com Staff Member Colin Roaf. Have a great day Colin.

Event entry update.
22nd April: Many thanks to
Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 1 of the official entry lists for Race, Rock'n'Ride which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 20th-21st May, and the FIA / FIM Main Event which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 26th-29th May.

You can check out the Race, Rock'n'Ride entry list by clicking here and the FIA / FIM Main Event entry list by clicking here.

The official closing date for both races is next Friday, 28th April. Official entry forms for both races can be downloaded from the SPRC web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. If you have any queries about SPRC event entry then please contact Ian Marshall at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.


Swift snippets.
22nd April: If you were tuned in to our Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam during yesterday's Peak Performance Day then your eyes didn't deceive you, that was a Top Fuel Dragster you saw. The driver was longtime fan Kevin Chapman who had never been down the track before but thought that it was about time he had a go, and he did so in one of Rune Fjeld's cars. A competent burnout and sixty foot made up yesterday's first run and Kevin is expected to make two more runs over this weekend.

Red Line Oils have signed up as a contingency sponsor of the 2017 EDRS Series. You can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.


York Raceway Easter review.
22nd April: Chris Murty has been in touch with a report of the Easter action at the UK's York Raceway:

Sunday started so well. The track was in unbelievable form for an Easter meeting and when the first round of qualifying started there were many breakouts as racers were caught out. Unfortunately the rain which we hoped would be a shower sat on us for the rest of the day and racing was called off. A bonus 100 points were awarded to those who made the only qualifying session in American Super Stock, JDM-DRC, Pro FWD and Super Cup.

Monday was a fresh start. The weather was great, the conditions were great, and the team got the track to an excellent standard ready for racing.

In American Super Stock there were breakouts galore, the track catching most people out including the 2016 Champion who broke out in the second round. It was the perfect day for Dave Billadeau who took top qualifier and the event win, taking the maximum amount of points.

In JDM-DRC, with 2016 Champion Nathan Askey retiring and two-time Champion Phil Davison yet to make his return, there was a chance for the rest of the field to gain some ground. The 2016 runner-up was too eager and red lit in the first round, CJ found himself taking the eveant thatnt win in impressive style in a car which cost him just £50. He was the slowest against the quickest in the final: poor Peter Richardson had to wait for six seconds for CJ to get near the eighth before he finally got the green light.

Pro FWD had extremely close racing, unfortunately an early retirement meant that this class went straight to the final. It meant more to PFD6 as he was out the traps and gone! Peter Richardson just couldn’t reel him in after that, PFD6 going on to take the win.

Hot Rod was unbelievably close, the reaction times were identical and the ETs almost identical, Derek Beck’s TVR just taking the win with an 11.8967 to Andy Crolla's losing 11.8968 in his red 1990s Camaro.

In Sportsman ET, 2016 Champion CJ took himself out with a breakout in the semi-finals, losing to James Murry in the green Cortina Estate who broke out in the final against long-time racer George Chiles who took the win in his Chrysler Crossfire.

Sadly Super Cup was plagued with breakages. Reigning champion Paul Grainger in the green Anglia wason top running 9.8 without the nitrous, however it appeared that there was an issue which put it on the trailer early. Ben Rushforth was out in another Jaguar-powered car, this time the Jaguart motor shoehorned into a Cobra body, but breakages ruled him out from racing. The car ran 9.8722 in RWYB. Unfortunately there was no final run.

In NSCC, Ian Wally in the Yellow Cortina matched his PB at York running 9.8707/136 taking the win from Derek Beck in his TVR 12.1981/113.

All of these race classes will return to York Raceway next weekend, 30th April-1st May.


Web site updates.
22nd April: The UK's Outlaw Anglias have launched a new web site at www.outlawanglia.co.uk. The site by photographer Callum Pudge includes rules, gallery and tributes to Debbie Hancox. Callum tells us that more information will be added as the season goes on including race reports and galleries, garage builds, Championship points after this weekend's first rounds, and more. If anyone has any suggestions for additions or amendments then you can E-Mail Callum at pudgeyspictures@gmail.com or contact him via Facebook.

FIA Top Methanol handicap announced.
21st April: Many thanks to FIA Drag Racing Commission Vice President Lars Pettersson for letting us know that the FIA have now announced the handicap for this year's combined FIA Top Methanol Dragster / Top Methanol Funny Car Championship.

TMFCs will receive a 0.256-second head start on the Tree, and qualifying times will be determined by subtracting 0.256 seconds from TMFCs' ETs.

You can read full details on the FIA web site by
clicking here.

UK Parent / Guardian licences.
21st April: UK scrutineer Glenn Stockton has asked us to remind UK Junior Dragster teams about Parent / Guardian licences:

Please read of page 341 of the MSA Blue Book, ref number S 7.1.7 "For Drag Race competitors under the age of 18 years a PG Entrants Licence is required". H 27.1.9 applies, which can be found on page 137 of the Blue Book.

If you have any queries then you can contact Glenn at glennstockton1955@gmail.com.


APIRA event entry update.
21st April: Many thanks to Jerry Cookson for passing us Version 2 of the official entry list for next week's APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Entry is still open and you can download the official entry forms from the track's web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.com. Racers are encouraged to pay their entry fee via Bacs rather than credit card or cheques, as this cuts down on administrative charges and time; SCR's account details can be found on the entry form.

If you have any queries about APIRA Springspeed Nationals entry then please contact Shakespeare County Raceway at shakespearecountyraceway@gmail.com or call 01789 720180 (outside the UK +44 1789 720180).


All aboard for VWDRC round 2.
21st April: After a most successful Festival of Power racing and weather wise the UK's Volkswagen Drag Racing Club head back to Santa Pod Raceway for Round 2 of their 30th anniversary season. Luke Stevenson writes that this weekend's round is the first for the Championships' new sponsor:

We are happy to announce that Racinglines, a company which provides precision fluid transfer solutions and which specialises in catering for motorsport and fast road applications, have joined the ever growing list of VWDRC sponsors. Racinglines supply a massive range of parts for your fuel system - fuel pumps, fittings, hoses and swirl pots - as well as boost hoses and oil cooling options.

Racinglines have very kindly given us a discount code for all to use on their web site at www.racinglines.com. Use promo code VWDRC17 for 20% off the advertised price. We look forward to displaying Racinglines' logo on all of our cars throughout the 2017 season.

As most head to Santa Pod for today's Peak Performance Day prior to Big Bang we are very excited to welcome back José Realista with his awesome dayglo Diesel Polo. José stunned the Easter crowds with passes into the mid nines and will be looking for a new diesel FWD record this weekend before getting his competitive head on for another round of bracket racing. We also await the unveiling of Paul Jordan's brand new VW Polo race car, Sam Young's newly-competed Black Current 3 who has (adopt Street Outlaws accent) gone Big Tyre as the quest begins for an electric seven. With these, and a massive entry just shy of fifty cars, it's going to be a great weekend.

A quick Get Well Soon message to racer Ross Chisholm Brown who suffered a broken leg on Monday after falling off a swing... no, seriously, he did. Keith, can we have racing back on Bank Holiday Monday? It seems safer.

Tune into the VWDRC Facebook page for more updates during the weekend and to Eurodragster.com for live reports and results.


ATD welcome all to Clastres.
21st April: Didier Concave writes from France to invite European racers to compete at the two rounds of the 2017 Association Trophée Dragster National Championship:

ATD are organising races at Clastres in the north of France on 17th-18th June and 22nd-23rd July. The track is located on a racing complex near Clastres village, between St Quentin and Noyon (near the A1 motorway).


Both races will be over the quarter mile and the track will be prepared by ATD staff. All European racers are welcome. If you are interested then you can find all of the information you need - fees, rules, entry etc - on the Association Trophée Dragster Facebook page or E-Mail atd2003@free.fr.

Please don't hesitate to come and race at France's drag strip, and we wish everyone an enjoyable drag racing season.


VWDRC offered Two Seater discount.
20th April: Donna Finnegan writes that
Santa Pod Raceway are offering Volkswagen Drag Racing Club racers a special discount on Two Seater Dragster rides for their crew, sponsors, fans, family, friends or indeed themselves at this weekend's Big Bang:

There is one slot available on Saturday and two slots on Sunday and they are only on offer to VWDRC racers entered for the event. The passenger rides are available for £200 plus VAT (usual price £399 plus VAT); this does not include admission to the event but does include a souvenir T-Shirt, certificate and time slip as well as the ride itself.

Terms and Conditions apply and passengers must meet the requirements listed on the Two Seater web page at www.santapod.co.uk/dr_2seater.php.

Payment must be made prior to the event; no refunds or cancellations will be available. To book, please E-Mail donna@santapod.com by 12:00 midday tomorrow (Friday).


Swift snippets.
20th April: Many thanks to Yvonne Tramm and our own Simon for posting the post-Festival of Power points standings in the 2017 UK National and Santa Pod Racers Club Championships. You can check out the points on our OCS Paint-sponsored Points Standings page which you can reach by clicking here or by clicking on the OCS Paint Points Standings link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Good luck and stay safe to Jonnie Lindberg (Fuel Funny Car) and Fred Hanssen (Top Alcohol Dragster) who are contesting this weekend's 30th Annual NHRA Springnationals at Royal Purple Raceway in Baytown. Qualifying commences tomorrow (Friday) and you will be able to stay in touch with our heroes' progress courtesy of the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com and don't miss the Lindberg Brothers' excellent web site at www.lindbergbros.com and their equally excellent Facebook page.

Eurodragster.com sponsor VP Racing Fuels have signed up as a contingency sponsor of the 2017 EDRS Series. You can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.


APIRA event entry update.
19th April: Entry is still open for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, a round of the UK National Drag Racing, ACU UK Drag Bike and other Championships, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway at the end of next week, Saturday-Monday 29th April-1st May. You can download the official entry forms from the track's web site at
www.shakespearecountyraceway.com. Racers are encouraged to pay their entry fee via Bacs rather than credit card or cheques, as this cuts down on administrative charges and time; SCR's account details can be found on the entry form.

Many thanks to Jerry Cookson for passing us Version 1 of the official entry list for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. "If you have sent in your entry but are not on the list then please wait for Version2 before panicking", says Jerry. "We can only process entries as quickly as Postman Pat delivers the mail! Furthermore, if you are intending on paying for your entry by Bacs, have marked the entry accordingly, but have not done so yet (we know who you are!) then please make sure that this part of the entry process has been completed by the end of this week."

If you have any queries about APIRA Springspeed Nationals entry then please contact Shakespeare County Raceway at shakespearecountyraceway@gmail.com or call 01789 720180 (outside the UK +44 1789 720180).


Havoc adds fourth US date.
19th April: With the March Meet, considered by many to be a successful first meeting for the UK's Havoc AA/Fuel Altered team, now a distant memory the team are looking forward to the next chapter of the 2017 US Tour. Nick Davies writes:

In June, we will be travelling to the historic Beech Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Kentucky for the Holley National Hot Rod Reunion where we will be part of a four-car Classic Fuel Altered shoot-out competing with and against stablemate Ron Hope's Rat Trap, Randy Bradford and his Fiat and Dave Hough's Nanook. For anyone with an interest in the Nostalgia racing movement in the US, check out YouTube footage of the facility then come and support us on 15th-17th June.


A new date has been added in August, as we have been invited to be part of six-car Fuel Altered show at the US 131 Northern Nationals at US 131 Motorsports Park in Martin, Michigan. We wanted to arrange at least one summer meeting to allow families to travel without interrupting school term dates, and the Northern Nationals works well. Also in attendance will be an eight-car qualified field of Nostalgia Funny Cars as well as Bob Motz with his world-famous Jet Kenworth Truck.

We will finish off the year at the California Hot Rod Reunion in October, as planned, after which the car will be loaded to travel home.

The team would like to welcome new sponsor Goodyear Tyres, who have kindly offered to supply us with slicks and front runners for the rest of the tour and beyond. Goodyear join Beech Underwriting, Rat Trap Racing, Lawrie Gatehouse and the NFAA, US Automotive, Lucas Oil, Motorstate Distributing, ARP Fasteners and Thacker and Co as supporting partners for the entire US.2017 tour.

The team would also like to thank all the fans for their incredible support prior to, at, and since the March Meet as well as Eurodragster.com for their extensive coverage, all of which helps more than you can appreciate (Thanks, you're welcome - Ed). As well as on Eurodragster.com you can follow the team's progress on their web site at www.havocfuelaltered.co.uk and on their Facebook page.


Swift snippets.
19th April: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came with the words "Here's a Big Bang taster". If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.

Finland's Petteri Liimatainen will be racing in Top Methanol Dragster in 2017. You can find out more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.


The Lady finds her way again.
19th April: Suze Morris writes that UK ET Bike racer Phil Pratt was delighted to pick up the winner's at the Festival of Power, especially as it came after eighteen months during which it seemed that the team had completely lost their way:

In 2016 Satan's Lady had been plagued with problems, meaning that we sat out the UK National Finals whilst former 8.50 Bike Champion Jake Mechaell took her in and refreshed and rebuilt her motor in time for us to test at the Flame and Thunder where she was to prove consistent beyond belief: five passes all in the very low 9.0s and finishing the day with a nice 8.99 on the board!

The decision was made to put her away and leave her alone so, in true last-minute drag racing tradition, we loaded up and headed off for Thursday's Test Day. A few minor adjustments to the suspension resulted in Phil putting in his best ever sixty foot time during qualifying, so we were ready for race day. With runs of 9.07, 9.04, 9.04 and another 9.04 in the final with Gary Hester, where we ended our trophy drought, it definitely looks like we've got our consistency back!

We have to say a massive Thank You to Jake Mechaell who worked so hard to get us back on track, and we must also send apologies to Donna, Hayden and Maria for all the time he was tucked away out of sight in the workshop! A huge Thank You to all of the teams in ET Bike for their camaraderie; they are such a great bunch and we're very proud to be a part of the varied and ever-growing class. Thanks also, as always, to the track crew who worked so hard all over the weekend but especially for getting the race surface dry so quickly after the shower of rain just before our semi-final.

As we continue to fly the flag of the Mighty Eighth Air Force above our pits, we are always delighted to have visitors. Our information and displays about the 92nd Bombardment Group USAAF during their time at Podington continues to expand, with families of those who served at Station 109 (as it was during WWII) still sending photographs and stories of their loved ones, which we are honoured to display on our pit walls. If you haven't already popped by and taken a look then please do, it's fascinating stuff and is keeping me busy (and, at times, in need of a new supply of tissues). We are immensely proud to run Satan's Lady in tribute to those who served from the place we all love.

The Festival of Power has given the team a real boost and we are looking forward to hopefully carrying our new momentum through to this weekend's Big Bang and the rest of the 2017 SPRC Championship. Phil really needs a new coat!


Big Bang Perfect Awards.
19th April: This weekend's Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway is the second event in the 2017 Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme. £125 is on offer for perfect performance.

The Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 after it was won by Gearhead Garage UK Super Pro ET racer Laura Turburville at the Festival of Power. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer at the event to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available to racers in all classes during qualifying (commences 16:00 Saturday) and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £75 for next week's APIRA Springspeed Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals. The Perfect Light Award is presented in association with Bad Habit Racing (Cath and Tig Napier, Pro ET).

Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office or from the Eurodragster.com staff.

The Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supporting Bloodwise has been increased to £75 after it went unclaimed at the Festival of Power. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer at the event to run an ET to the thousandth of a second on dial-in or index. The Perfect ET Award is available during qualifying (commences 16:00 Saturday) or eliminations in VW Pro, VW Sportsman, Sportsman ET, Lucas Oil Junior Dragster (eliminations only), Nostalgia Super Stock, 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike and ET Bike, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect ET of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £100 for next week's APIRA Springspeed Nationals at Shakespeare County Raceway; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals. The Perfect ET Award is presented by Derek and Fiona Flynn of Eurodragster.com sponsor Gold RV in support of Bloodwise; you can donate to Bloodwise at www.bloodwise.org.uk.

To be eligible to collect the Perfect ET Award, racers are required to carry Eurodragster.com / Bloodwise decals, one on each side of the vehicle. If you pull an event's first Perfect ET but are not carrying decals then there will be no discussion; we will not pay out and the next person to pull a Perfect ET will get the money assuming that they are carrying decals. Decals are available in the Signing On office.


Important messages from SPRC.
18th April: Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall has been in touch with a couple of important messages for racers and SPRC members:

Friday of next week (28th) is the official closing date for entry to both Race, Rock'n'Ride which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 20th-21st May and the FIA / FIM Main Event which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 26th-29th May. Official entry forms for both races can be downloaded from the SPRC web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.

Ian has to go into hospital today (Tuesday) so he tells us that SPRC business may be slow for a short while. "Depending upon how quickly things progress I hope to be back to answering the phone on Wednesday and dealing with E-Mails on Thursday", he says.

Our very best wishes to Ian for a successful hospital trip and a rapid recovery.


Feature: Webster Race Engineering.
18th April: For the latest in our occasional series of Features presented in association with Lucas Oil Products Simon stepped in to the workshop of Eurodragster.com sponsor Webster Race Engineering.

Simon spoke to Jon Webster about the products, services and facilities which WRE can offer, projects underway including Jon's own Pro Mod currently under out-of-hours construction, and more.

You can take a look at the Feature by clicking here or by clicking on the Features, Interviews, Tributes link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.


Help Oscar help the Hospice.
18th April: Santa Pod Racers Club pit marshal Caroline Boncey is again undertaking a Bubble Run in aid of the Hospice of St Francis in Berkhamsted and you can help her to raise funds for this very good cause:

"I have sky-dived and walked for the Hospice of St Francis and this year it's the bubble rush again", says Caroline. "Last year I ended up looking like a Smurf and if they have green bubbles I could end up looking like oscar! My goddaughter Chloe is bubbling with me again this year.

"Please help me to raise as much as I can so that the Hospice can help as many people as they can. When my nan stayed at the Hospice they gave her love and care and afterwards they helped me. Pennies and pounds add up and will allow the Hospice to carry on loving and caring."

If you would like to sponsor Oscar to get frothy for this excellent cause then you can check out her JustGiving page by clicking here.


Swift snippets.
18th April: UK Fuel Funny Car racer Steve Ashdown asked us to say a big Thank You to Nick Kenway at 3 Sixty Wraps in Northampton for stepping in and helping to sort out the wrap on the Undertaker FC after another company let Steve down. "Nick's a great guy", says Steve. "He has changed all of his plans for the next few weeks to fit in the Funny Car. He really knows his stuff and he is looking forward to helping us with car. I can recommend that anyone who needs a vehicle or a trailer wrapped to call Nick on 01604 645826 or look at his web site at www.3sixtywraps.co.uk."

Many thanks to Andy Marrs for forwarding the official Timing Data from the Festival of Power, which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the Timing Data link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Congratulations to UK ET Bike racer Siobhan Moor who lowered her PB from 10.8050 to 10.2750 at the Festival of Power. Duncan Barron wrote to let us know that no modifications had been made to Siobhan's bike and that it was just a case of her riding it better after making only ten runs last season.

Although Your News Editor's still-in-force diet precluded sampling the more calorific of it we would like to say a big Thank You to Eurodragster.com Team Nutritionist Syd McDonald, Benni Voss, the Payne family, the Wilson family, the Charman family, the Coulsell family, and all those who brought lunch and Easter treats to Commentary and the Eurodragster.com office during the Festival of Power. It was and is very much appreciated.

We can only hope that people read this stuff, yet again a lot didn't before last weekend, but the current webcast schedule for this weekend's Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway is Eurodragster.com's Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam from Friday's Peak Performance Day, Box Lane Productions' stream via Santa Pod Raceway's Facebook on Saturday, and then the Eurodragster.com webcam again on Sunday. The relevant links are on our Big Bang Event Index page which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

If you have any UK or European drag racing memorabilia taking up space then drag racing fan Adam James is an avid collector and would be pleased to help you to make room. "I do not have pots of money but if you have anything which you think might be of interest then please contact me with details of item(s) and how much you would accept for them including P&P", says Adam. You can contact Adam at chelsead@sky.com.

Danish Top Fuel Dragster racer Stig Neergaard will be enjoying extended support from Lucas Oil Products in 2017. You can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here. Also now showing on the Drag Racing Europe Blog is the great news that oil pump and connecting rod manufacturer Auto Verdi will again be a contingency sponsor of the EDRS in 2017 and you can read about that by clicking here.

Tactless (adj): Asking Eurodragster.com for copies of pictures for use on your Facebook but never sending news items to Eurodragster.com.

Rude (adj): Taking pictures or text from Eurodragster.com without asking permission and without crediting the source or sharing a link. Also see Theft.

This should go without saying.


Festival of Power coverage.
16th April: Congratulations to the winners at this weekend's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway:

MSA Pro Modified: Andy Robinson 6.0650/226.80 def. Bobby Wallace 6.2929/218.22
Gearhead Garage UK Super Pro ET: John Gerritsen (6.88) 6.8784/167.27 b/o def. Brad Jackson (7.84) 7.8164/167.88 DQ b/o
Modurstang Pro ET: Mike Lacey (9.32) 9.3607/141.16 def. Paul Brown (9.27) 9.2335/136.91 DQ b/o
Sportsman ET: Stephen West (17.73) 17.7149/75.16 b/o def. Gill Medley (13.13) 13.0865/109.60 DQ b/o
Comp Eliminator: Kev Perkins (8.00) 7.5299/179.82 def. def. Andy Hone (8.00) 9.0947/149.04 DQ red
Super Comp: Collin Morrice 8.9060/142.10 def. Conrad Stanley 8.9131/149.06
Super Gas: Stu Doignie 9.9235/155.29 def. Jon Giles 9.9636/133.66
Super Street: Leigh Morris 10.9568/119.16 def. Dave Cherrett 11.1209/98.14
Lucas Oil Junior Dragster: Billy Everitt (8.01) 8.0753/75.91 def. Aaron Fensome (8.05) 8.1088/79.93
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator: Mark Todd 8.2076/154.21 def. Stu Williams 11.4369/121.77
Wild Bunch: Tom Hawkins (7.55) 7.5543/166.69 def. Bob Hawkins (7.00) 7.1680/185.89
VW Pro: James Gould (12.55) 13.7545/80.79 def. Jose Realista (9.62) 12.9300/134.89
VW Sportsman: Nathan Cozens (14.20) 14.4061/97.10 def. Polly Judge (15.68) 15.6489/82.86 DQ b/o

Top Fuel Bike: Steve Woollatt 6.3602/215.89 def. Rene van den Berg 13.4950/71.69
Pro Stock Bike: Len Paget 7.8378/142.58 bye, Ian Burns did not start
Funny Bike: Phil Crossley 7.2055/181.40 def. Allan Davies 7.1999/178.51
Super Street Bike: Pete Field 7.2519/200.77 def. Rick Stubbins 7.7937/188.13
Comp Bike: Eddy Smiley 7.9501/171.73 def. Martin Walker 10.6104/99.06
8.50 Bike: Jake Mechaell 8.5938/141.63 def. Jay Roe 8.4798/150.13 DQ b/o
9.50 Bike: Richard Sawatzki 9.5011/141.14 def. Adam Burns 9.4295/119.59 DQ b/o
ET Bike: Phil Pratt (9.03) 9.0486/139.85 def. Gary Hester (10.62) 10.7273/125.56
Junior Drag Bike: Liam Holgate (9.92) 9.9816/62.02 def. Blade Dummer (9.15) 9.1487/68.03 DQ b/o

Congratulations also to Gearhead Garage UK Super Pro ET racer Laura Turburville who won the Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award with a Reaction Time of 0.0004 seconds in Q3. The Perfect Light Award has been reset to £50 for next weekend's Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway. The Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supporting
Bloodwise was not won and has been increased to £75 for Big Bang.

You can check out our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power reports, pit notes and galleries by clicking here of by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.


BDRHoF Gala to fête Juniors again.
12th April: Once again the UK National Junior Dragster and Junior Drag Bike Champions will be celebrated at the
British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala Awards Dinner at the Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge, Surrey on Saturday 18th November. Brian Taylor writes:

As at last year's event Santa Pod Racers Club, Lucas Oil Products UK, Atlantic Fluid Tech and US Automotive will sponsor two tables of ten for the top three on four wheels and two, who will be guests along with their parents. It is an occasion to which they all look forward and we must thank our sponsors for supporting the event and the Junior Drag Racing classes in this unique way.

During the evening the Juniors will be introduced to many of the drag racing legends attending and asked on stage to receive the applause of those attending the event.

British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Limited Board Member Phil Evans of Santa Pod Racers Club, the FIA Drag Racing Commission and Atlantic Fluid Tech said "Last year it was such a pleasure to involve the young people entering our sport and introduce them to drag racing legends like Don Schumacher, Ron Hope and Bob Muravez at the Gala. I don't know who was more thrilled, the legends or the Juniors, and it was one of the highlights for me as well. This year we have a few more surprises for them so watch this space."

The BDRHoF is now taking reservations for the 2017 Gala Awards Dinner by E-Mail at stuart@britishdragracinghof.co.uk or by telephone on 01933 279102. This year the tickets are priced competitively at £65 which includes a pre-dinner reception. The event always sells out well in advance, so if you would like to join us for the occasion we suggest you make your reservation sooner rather than later. On receiving your reservation you will be given the procedure to book rooms at the negotiated room rate that includes breakfast and VAT as well as parking.

On-going news about the Gala, sponsors and other events in which the BDRHoF is involved will be published on the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame web site at www.britishdragracinghof.co.uk, on Eurodragster.com, and on Facebook and Twitter.


Festival of Power racer update.
11th April: Many thanks to
Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for forwarding us details of the arrangements for this week's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway:

Thursday 13th April
08:00 Santa Pod Raceway's gates open for the duration
11:00 Signing On office opens (NB Earlier for Peak Performance Day participants)
15:00 Car scrutineering commences, no specific order
16:00 Bike scrutineering commences, no specific order

Friday 14th April
07:00 Signing On office opens
07:00 Car scrutineering commences (Order and notes)
07:00 Bike scrutineering commences (Order and notes)
09:30 Track opens for qualifying

Saturday 15th April
07:00 Signing On office opens
07:00 Car scrutineering commences
07:00 Bike scrutineering commences
09:30 Track opens for qualifying and eliminations

Sunday 16th April
07:30 Signing On office opens
07:30 Car scrutineering commences
07:30 Bike scrutineering commences
09:30 Track opens for eliminations

The provisional running orders are available and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please note as ever that running orders are subject to change due to weather or track conditions or for any other reason deemed necessary by race officials.

No race vehicle motors are to be fired up before 09:00 or after 20:00 on any day of the event. Before 09:00 vehicles should be pushed or towed to Scrutineering, not driven. Non-observation of curfew will result in exclusion from the event.

Junior racers please remember the rule about pushing vehicles back to the pits once through the arch beside Scrutineering.

Only race officials and SPR staff are allowed in Race Control whilst racing is underway. Should racers wish to raise any matter with race officials then please do not visit Race Control; please firstly see Race Secretary Kathy Taylor who is based in Signing On.

Colour commentators are requested to come to Commentary only when their class is at the head of the lanes, to vacate Commentary when their class has run, and not to bring guests to Commentary with them.

The Eurodragster.com office at the Bankside end of Race Control is similarly out of bounds during racing except to Eurodragster.com staff, Zeon TV crew and racers or crew collecting Perfect Award money.


Big Bang racer update.
11th April: Thanks also to Ian Marshall for forwarding us details of the arrangements for next week's Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway:

Friday 21st April
09:00 Gates open
09:00 Signing On opens for Peak Performance Day participants (NB DVLC licences required)
09:30 Track opens for Peak Performance Day

Saturday 22nd April
08:30 Signing On office opens (NB Competition licences required for race, DVLC licences required for RWYB)
08:30 Car scrutineering commences, no specific order (Notes)
08:30 Bike scrutineering commences, no specific order (Notes)
09:30 Track opens for Run What You Brung
15:00 Run What You Brung ends
16:00 Track opens for qualifying

Sunday 23rd April
08:00 Signing On office opens
08:00 Car scrutineering commences
08:00 Bike scrutineering commences
09:30 Track opens for qualifying and eliminations

The provisional running orders are available and can be checked out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please note as ever that running orders are subject to change due to weather or track conditions or for any other reason deemed necessary by race officials.

No race vehicle motors are to be fired up before 09:00 or after 20:00 on any day of the event. Before 09:00 vehicles should be pushed or towed to Scrutineering, not driven. Non-observation of curfew will result in exclusion from the event.

Junior racers please remember the rule about pushing vehicles back to the pits once through the arch beside Scrutineering.

Only race officials and SPR staff are allowed in Race Control whilst racing is underway. Should racers wish to raise any matter with race officials then please do not visit Race Control; please firstly see Race Secretary Yvonne Tramm who is based in Signing On.

Colour commentators are requested to come to Commentary only when their class is at the head of the lanes, to vacate Commentary when their class has run, and not to bring guests to Commentary with them.

The Eurodragster.com office at the Bankside end of Race Control is similarly out of bounds during racing except to Eurodragster.com staff, Zeon TV crew and racers or crew collecting Perfect Award money.


Malmgren signs Aeromotive.
11th April: Swedish Pro Stock racer Michael Malmgren is pleased to announce a deal with Aeromotive to support Malmgren Racing with fuel pumps, regulators and fuel filters.

"We are very happy to be able to work closely with Aeromotive's Motorsports Manager Bub Miller", says Michael Malmgren. "When it comes to fuel systems, they work with most NHRA Pro Stock teams and have the best products out there."

"Michael Malmgren has been around for a long time and is very professional", says Motorsports Manager Bub Miller. "He works with many other US performance part manufacturers, so he fits in well in our group of supported motorsport teams. We are happy to have Malmgren Racing on board."


Going Perfect with York Raceway.
11th April: York Raceway are delighted to announce that they will be running Perfect ET and Perfect Reaction Time awards across all PDRC Championship classes this season.

The Perfect Reaction Award sponsored by Gasworks Plumbing and the Perfect ET Award sponsored by Northrace Speedshop are worth £25 each, so a fantastic £50 will be up for grabs each meeting and will roll over until it is won.

To qualify racers must obtain a Perfect Award sticker from the Signing On office and display it in a visible location on the race vehicle throughout the event. Prize money will only be awarded to racers displaying the Perfect Award sticker, so don't forget to pick yours up.

York Raceway would like to thank all of their sponsors and Eurodragster.com for their support (Thanks, you're welcome - Ed).


Brown's Pro ET return.
11th April: The UK's Paul Brown Motorsport are looking forward to returning to Pro ET at this weekend's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway:

This will be our first time in Pro ET since 2012 when we won the UK National Championship. This will be a new challenge in a different car and using a Sportsman Tree for the first time in four years.

Unfortunately the Shorty chassis was too badly damaged in the accident and the repair cost was not worth the trouble, which was a shame as the car and I were becoming a great combination. So I will be driving the dragster which I used for the final race of last season. It has been showing some consistent numbers already but it didn't quite have enough power to make the 8.90 Super Comp index. We haven't really had to do much to the car over the winter as we put in all the legwork to make it to the UK National Finals.

We don't know how many events we plan on running this season as we are so busy away from the track. In addition the car is still for sale as a turn-key, so if you are interested then please come and see us in the pits this weekend or call me on 07554 626162.


The car is sponsored this season by sPeedZ Simulator Experience. sPeedZ is an indoor simulator competing for fastest Reaction Time with a full-sized Pro drag racing tree, steering wheels and full working sounds of Top Fuel, Pro Stock, and Harley bike for a start line experience. There are various different modes to choose from and you can run a full competition ladder. It is available for hire for parties, stag / hen do, car shows, corporate events and trade events. On 20th April the indoor simulator will be making an appearance at Oakley Sports and Social Club, Oakley, Bedford, MK43 7RU to raise money for the Air Ambulance. Everyone is welcome. There are mini moto and short wheelbased dragster outdoor versions coming soon. Please like the Facebook page for upcoming events or for full details about hiring please phone 07947 945935 or E-Mail speedzsimx@hotmail.com.

This weekend I will also be crewing with Andy Harrison, who was awarded his racing licence last weekend and will be racing in Super Gas. Good luck for the season Andy. I would also like to congratulate my best mate and long-term crew member Lee Stapleton who got married to Dani on 8th April. I hope that being married means you will still come to the track to come to play Lee, see you Saturday buddy!


More money for UK Top Sportsman.
11th April: UK Top Sportsman are pleased to welcome JT Construction as the headline sponsor for UK Top Sportsman 2017 which takes place at the Mopar EuroNationals at Santa Pod Raceway on 28th–30th July. Paul Marston writes:

This will be the first year that John Tebenham has stepped up to take the title role and we are delighted to welcome him. JT has in past years offered a hefty cash bounty for the winner of the Heads Up race, last year weighing in with £1250 cash for the number one qualifier and winner.

John said "Nowadays I am just too busy with business to race myself, but I can still support this great class. I really appreciate what Paul and his team do. They all do it for nothing, and if people like them didn't put in the time and effort then it wouldn't happen, it's as simple as that. I know how hard race teams lean on their stuff to win this race, I just put some money up to show my appreciation of Sportsman racers having been one myself. To be honest, with the exception of Kenny Coleman at EDA I am quite surprised that more of the people directly involved in the sport don't help out with a little bit of sponsorship money. After all, it's their customers who race in it."

The prize fund will work as follows. The usual Top Sportsman prize money will be allocated as it usually is, that is to say that after expenses all the remaining entry money goes into the prize pot. This is shared out equally between the Fast Bracket and the Heads Up race. The size of the prize fund is dependent upon the number of entries. JT's money will be available for the Heads Up race and will be £750 win and £500 for runner-up, both in cash. JT's prize fund will not be shared out if the race is not completed, but the rest of the Top Sportsman prize fund will.

In addition JT has also put up €100 travel money for the first three foreign competitors who want to race with us. It won't pay for the trip but it's another way of giving some help.

There are some mean race cars expected this year. Make no mistake, this is the richest, toughest, no holds barred, no rules other than safety race on the calendar for Sportsman doorslammers.

There are still some marketing partnership and sponsor spots available, please contact via Facebook at UK Top Sportsman, E-Mail pmdragracing@gmail.com, call me on 07831 650230, or pass by the PMR pit at Easter.

Once again our sincere thanks to JT, Gearhead Garage, Steve Ashdown, Liam Jones, Matt Wright, Kenny Coleman at EDA, Tog and the Eurodragster.com team, Dave and Helen at Zeon TV, and all the other great people who support what we do. Last but by no means least thanks to all the PMR and SPR crew who help out to make this happen, and naturally our hosts the organising committee of the Mopar Euronationals.


Swift snippets.
11th April: Jens Könnecke writes from Germany with a shot of the team preparing the race car for Super Pro ET competition at this weekend's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway. "See you Wednesday!", says Jens.

Teams planning to field more than one driver in the same vehicle in the UK National Championships this season are reminded that they have until close Thursday to inform Yvonne Tramm at ytramm@africonnect.com.

It is not too late to book up for a final day's pre-season testing at Thursday's Pro Peak Performance Test and Tune Day at Santa Pod Raceway. The PPD features a track prepped to event standard and full safety cover. Discounted entry is available on advance bookings. For more details, or to sign up, check out www.rwyb.com.

Eurodragster.com sponsor Simpson Europe has signed up with Speedgroup as a contingency partner for 2017. "In personal safety products designed to work together to create a safety cell, I would say we are market leader" says Jan Phersson, founder and owner of Simpson Europe. Simpson Europe has joined Speedgroup's contingency programme with helmets and firesuits for Pro Modified, Pro Stock, Pro Street, Top Doorslammer and Junior Dragster. You can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

Congratulations to Sweden's Adam Flamholc who took it all in VP Racing Fuels Xtreme Pro Mod at the weekend's NMRA / NMCA All-Star Nationals in Atlanta. Adam qualified #1, set a new record and Personal Best, and won the event. You can read more on the NMCA web site.

No news update yesterday (Monday) courtesy of Tog's incompetent local rail company so we were unable to say a big Happy Birthday with love from Kevin and Jake to Lizz Charman, to Santa Pod Raceway Track Announcer and Pro ET racer-in-waiting Colin Theobald, and to Keith Williams. Hope you had a great day guys. Christine, Sandy, Megan, Stuart and Charlotte asked us to say a big Happy Birthday for today to Super Gas racer Collin Morrice, have a great day Collin, and we would like to say Happy Birthday to Pro Modified racer Jöran Persåker, grattis Jöran.

Today is the fortieth anniversary of Your News Editor's first ever visit to a drag race, and to Santa Pod Raceway. That Tog still jumps out of bed in the small hours to go racing and still gets so excited that he occasionally breaks the speed limit to get to the track speaks volumes. A big Thank You to all of the racers, officials, owners, staff and of course Eurodragster.com colleagues who made and make it so much fun, and here's to another forty.


Web site updates.
11th April: Our good buddy Alan Currans has updated his excellent Acceleration Archive with shots of Sunday's action at the Public Test and Tune at Shakespeare County Raceway. You can check out the latest update via What's New at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk.

The Mad Welshman has updated his Flickr site with a gallery of shots from the pre-Fast Show Saturday Night Special at Santa Pod Raceway. You can check out Mad's pictures at www.flickr.com/photos/the_madwelshman.


Pit Guides sought at Main Event.
11th April: Brian Taylor writes that Pit Guides are still sought for the Institute of the Motor Industry Students' Day on day one of the FIA / FIM Main Event at Santa Pod Raceway (Friday 26th May):

This year there could be seven hundred students and the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame has been asked to assemble a team of Pit Tour Guides to accompany groups around the pits and to introduce them to the technology, racers and crews.

The aim is to get ten people on board. The busy period tends to be between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm, so if you are with a team and not running during those times please let me know. Or if you have been involved in drag racing and think you can pass on your knowledge and enthusiasm to students entering the motor industry then get in touch. We will be based in the Mid Track VIP unit on the pit side of the track.

If you are available and would like to join the team then please let me know so that I can start to plan passes etc. Please call 01395 579733 or E-Mail brian@petrolhead.vianw.co.uk.


Weekend galleries.
9th April: In association with
John Woolfe Racing an advance guard of the Eurodragster.com team were at Santa Pod Raceway at the weekend to cover Saturday's Run What You Brung and today's GTI Spring Festival.

You can check out the weekend galleries on our Festival of Power week Event Index, which also contains a link to the final official entry list, by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.


Decals available this weekend.
9th April: Racers testing at Santa Pod Raceway this weekend who wish to get a head start on carrying Eurodragster.com decals please note that we will have a supply of both car and bike decals in the Eurodragster.com office at the spectator end of Race Control (over the right lane bleach box) today. Please use the spectator side stairs to reach our office.


The new decals for the Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award in support of Bloodwise will be available in Signing On from Thursday morning, as will Eurodragster.com decals; visitors are not allowed in Race Control, including our office, as soon as the Festival of Power commences.


Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards 2017.
7th April: We are very pleased to confirm that the Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme will continue in 2017. There is a change in arrangements for the Perfect ET Award so please read carefully and please be sure to replace the previous decals on your race vehicle.

We are pleased to announce the Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supporting Bloodwise for the 2017 season, in support of the charity Bloodwise which funds research into blood cancer of all types and which is a favourite charity of the racing community in loving and appreciative memory of late SPRC Club Secretary Paula Marshall. As well as awarding at least £50 to the first racer to record a Perfect ET at supported events, the Scheme is designed to encourage everyone in the racing community to continue their generous support of Bloodwise.

Derek and Fiona Flynn of longtime Eurodragster.com sponsor Gold RV have supported the Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award since 2008. Last year Derek decided to sponsor the Perfect ET Award in aid of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. "We would like to thank all racers who contributed to this campaign", he says. "Whilst most racers understood that stickers were required, and we were so pleased to see many of the Eurodragster.com / NSPCC decals on so many cars and bikes, it was not understood that we were also encouraging donations to NSPCC. Fiona and I together with Eurodragster.com have chosen to support Bloodwise this season. We would like to encourage all racers to make a donation of £1 for each race event they plan to contest. Should you wish to donate your Perfect ET winnings, or a percentage, to Bloodwise then that would be great and we can arrange that for you.

"Donations can be easily made on-line at www.bloodwise.org.uk/donate or a collection box can be found with Richard Walters in the Super Pro ET pits, or at the Gold RV Racing pit when we are racing. Thank you in anticipation of your support for this great cause.

"We would also like to thank Pete Walters of fellow Eurodragster.com sponsor Peter Walters Race Design for again designing the year's Perfect ET decal free of charge."

The inaugural Eurodragster.com Perfect ET Award supporting Bloodwise of £50 will be posted at next weekend's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer at the event to run an ET to the thousandth of a second on dial-in or index. The Perfect ET Award is available during qualifying or eliminations in Super Pro ET, Pro ET, Sportsman ET, Super Comp, Super Gas, Super Street, Lucas Oil Junior Dragster (eliminations only), 8.50 Bike, 9.50 Bike, ET Bike, VW Pro, VW Sportsman, the Wild Bunch and Junior Drag Bike, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Run of the event. If not won at the Festival of Power then the Award will be increased to £75 for Big Bang, again at Santa Pod Raceway on the following weekend; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for Big Bang.

To be eligible to collect the Perfect ET Award, racers are required to carry Eurodragster.com / Bloodwise decals, one on each side of the vehicle. If you pull an event's first Perfect ET but are not carrying decals then there will be no discussion; we will not pay out and the next person to pull a Perfect ET will get the money assuming that they are carrying decals. Decals will be available in the Signing On office from Thursday morning.

Cath and Tig Napier of Bad Habit Racing are again kindly sponsoring the Eurodragster.com / Bad Habit Racing Perfect Light Award which also starts at £50 at the Festival of Power. The money will be paid in cash to the first racer at the event to record a Reaction Time of 0.000 seconds. The Perfect Light Award is available to racers in all classes during qualifying and eliminations, but will only be awarded for the first Perfect Light of the event. If not won this weekend then the Award will be increased to £75 for Big Bang; if it is won then it will be reset to £50 for Big Bang.

Decals are not mandatory for the Perfect Light Award but we would appreciate it if Eurodragster.com decals are carried. Eurodragster.com decals will be available in the Signing On office or from the Eurodragster.com staff.

2017 Eurodragster.com Perfect Awards Scheme

Festival of Power, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
Big Bang, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
APIRA Springspeed Nationals, Shakespeare County Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
Race, Rock'n'Ride, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
FIA / FIM Main Event, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
SPRC Summernationals, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
Dragstalgia, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award (All participants including RWYB)
Bug Jam, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
Mopar EuroNationals, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award (MSA Pro Modified only)
APIRA Open Sport Nationals, Shakespeare County Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
FIA / FIM European Finals, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award
UK National Finals, Santa Pod Raceway: Perfect Light Award and Perfect ET Award

Stay tuned because we are not yet finished with the Perfect Awards announcements. We will have more news for you the other side of the weekend.


Nicholson set for 2017.
7th April: UK Pro Modified racer Wayne Nicholson and the Lucky Devil team are, as ever, looking forward to the coming season. Wayne writes:

We hope to enter all six rounds of the MSA Pro Mod Championship. We have a few things to prove with our performance and needless to say like those of all the other teams our winter has been very busy trying to get everything together for the season and making that sure we can overcome any eventualities as we improve upon our performance.

I am very proud to say that we have Lucas Oil Products UK back on board for this season. We have had the honour of being supported by Lucas for some years now and they supply genuinely great products and support. Gemini Accident Repair Centres, at whose Leeds site I am General Manager, continue to support us too and of course I thank them for that also. Kenny Coleman has always been a big support with the help and services he provides at Engine Data Analysis (EDA) in Castleford, 01977 516622. NGK Spark Plugs are back with us too, again great products and support which we have enjoyed for several years. Thank you.

Unfortunately Easter will be the last time that we will be running with the EMACS logo on our car and rig. We have been very grateful for the support which EMACS have given us as principal sponsor for the last two years; this may be a relationship we see again in the future. Again thank you to everyone at EMACS.

Like any team we would love to chat to any potential sponsors. You never know what we could do to advertise your business and further the exposure you receive. Please contact us via our web site at www.luckydevil777dragracing.com.


Archie's eight-year wait ends.
6th April: The UK's youngest Lucas Oil Junior Dragster racer, Archie Wray, is more than excited about his first competitive outing at next week's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway. Archie turned eight in January but has been planning his racing career since the age of four, if not before.

"Archie has been coming to Santa Pod since he was two years old and absolutely loves it", said Emma Wray of Eurodragster.com sponsors CEJ Training Services Ltd and Phoenix Personnel. "His dad Kevin has been racing in various scenes for over twenty years, his older brother Jake started to race his 105e Anglia in Old Skool Ford last year and he also marshals at Santa Pod, and of course I work in Signing On at Santa Pod so Archie has been brought up around the drag racing scene. Kevin and Jake will be crewing for him this season."

"Archie has been on countdown to getting into a Junior Dragster since he was four years old. Everyone knew him because he would come up to the Pod and sit in all of the Juniors' cars and tell them that he would be racing one soon. Last year he started to get so excited about his eighth birthday because that meant that he would be able to get his own car. He got his licence at the first Run What You Brung at Santa Pod in January, the week after his birthday!"

Archie came up with the name The Shocker and and the design and colour scheme were all his own work. "Archie went along to 3 Sixty Wraps in Northampton with his picture of how he wanted the car to look", said Emma. "They were so impressed with him that they have now sponsored him along with One Day Web and Kejja Motorsport Ltd. The car was finished a couple of weeks ago and Archie has already tested at a couple of Run What You Brungs.

"We would like to say a massive Thank You for help and support to Ian Marshall, Darren Prentice, Carole Ismail, the whole Deevey family... the list is endless! Thank You also to Andy Fensome for all of his time, help and advice: Archie says that he is taking it all on board."

Archie himself said "I am buzzing and can't wait for Easter. I have been waiting for this my whole life."


A Beastly Audi.
6th April: After buying a new car last Autumn and testing Run What You Brungs, second-generation UK racer Rob Creswell has been convinced to have a go in UK National Championship competition:

My Audi RS4 may not be seen as much of a beast compared to a Pro Mod or Nitro Funny Car, but some people outside of drag racing have nicknamed my car The Beast. With high twelve-second quarter mile time slips and seven-minute Nurburgring lap times possible, these cars can move a bit.

So far I have loved every second of driving this car and look forward to competing in Sportsman ET for the coming season. VW Sportsman is also a possibility for me as I understand Audi is an acceptable brand of car for the class (One for you, Luke - Ed). Chris Creswell will also be competing in Sportsman ET and Pete Creswell in Super Comp as well as in Sportsman ET at Big Bang and Bug Jam, which should be a lot of fun!

We would like to wish everybody all the best for the 2017 season and to say a big thank you to our sponsors K&N, DemonTweeks, Goodridge, Samco Sport, Powerflex, SuperPro suspension parts, SPAL automotive, and a special thanks to EpicTech Media - please visit www.epictechmedia.co.uk.


Thanks to Paul Foote Ink.
6th April: We are very grateful indeed to longtime Eurodragster.com sponsor Paul Foote Ink for supplying the latest of several seasons' worth worth of Eurodragster.com decals. Paul, whom Eurodragster.com readers will recall for his striking Super Gas pick-up, produced decals in car and bike sizes and arranged for their delivery to Rogerham Mansions in a matter of days.

Paul Foote Ink, whose web site you can find at www.paulfoote.com, provide end-to-end sign management from design to production and final installation. Prestigious clients include Siemens, The Crystal London, Domino's Pizza and The Ace Café. Introduced in March 2017 were 2000mm x 800 mm roll-up banners from £29 including printing and forty eight-hour turn-round, with twenty four-hour turnround available. These would make great promotional items in a racer's pit; more details are available by clicking here. You can talk to Paul Foote Ink on 01252 371445 or via the web site.

Please show your appreciation for the support of Eurodragster.com sponsors by considering their companies when shopping for goods and services. Again a big Thank You to Paul.


Swift snippets.
6th April: Good luck and stay safe to multiple FIM European Top Fuel Bike Champion Ian King who will be contesting the first date of his 2017 US Tour at the Spring Cup at Valdosta (See below). You will be able to stay in touch with Ian's progress at Dragbike.com, Stripbike.com, and on Ian's Facebook page.

Many thanks to Ian Marshall for sending us tweaked final versions of the official entry lists for the Festival of Power and Big Bang, which take place at Santa Pod Raceway on 14th-16th April and 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd) respectively. You can check out the entry lists by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

On the subject of the Festival of Power, 17:00 UK time tomorrow (Friday) is the deadline to order discounted Festival of Power tickets. Some great deals are also available on VIP hospitality. For more details or to order your tickets check out www.santapod.com.

We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to Derek Flynn, long-standing sponsor of both Eurodragster.com and our Perfect Awards Scheme (about which more tomorrow), and to former Top Fuel Dragster racer Kim Reymond who together with tuners Per Andersen and Karsten Andersen made one of the most unforgettable runs in the history of European drag racing. Have a great day, both.


King confirms USA for 2017.
6th April: Multiple FIM European Top Fuel Bike Champion Ian King and the Gulf Oil Dragracing team The Gulf Oil Dragracing team are pleased to announce that they are to compete in the 2017 USA National Drag Bike Championship. Following a collaboration proposal from California-based John and Dea Morgan Racing, alongside additional support from long time dragbike racing benefactor Joe Koenig of Trim Tex and a number of individual supporters, the team were able to commit to compete in all five rounds of the Manufacturers Cup series.

2016 was a momentous year for the Gulf Oil Drag Racing team. Another record-setting tenth FIM European Championship was won, and in doing so Team Principal and rider Ian King became the most successful rider in European drag bike racing history by accumulating more Championship points of any rider in any class over the two decades since he began competing in the Championship. At the end of the season he diversified his sporting focus by using the very same Championship-winning machine for a successful attempt to set a new FIM World Land Speed Record on a track and in conditions totally at odds with the environment in which he had been so successful over his ten European drag racing Championships.

Following Ian's successful one-off race in the opening round of the 2014 USA National Championship, where he not only won the event but became the final permanent member of the prestigious MTC Top Fuel 5 Second Club, invitations from the organisers to race the entire USA National Championship and the hopes and desires of his many fans across the globe were compelling, so he and his team have been working on a programme to see if he could become the first European rider to do so since the late Brian Johnson more than three decades ago.

Following the decision to ship his operation to the US Ian said "We are so much looking forward to this. We have such good friends in our class, fans across the world and awesome sponsors that we owe it to them to take part in an all-new challenge. We would like to thank Gulf Oil, John and Deanna Morgan, Joe Koenig, Dave Vantine, Ivan Sansom and Rose Hughes, Mark Rendeluk, Ed Kelly, Scott Perri Roethemeier, John Stein, Frank Moya, the Maddox family, Sam Green, Neil Baskerville, Tamre Martin and Jay Regan and Dave Schnitz of MFC alongside our fantastic technical partners who have stepped up far and beyond the call of duty to make it happen."

Manufacturers Cup 2017
7th-9th April: Spring Cup - Valdosta, Georgia
3rd-4th June: Memphis Internationals - Memphis, Tennessee
15th-16th July: MTC Nationals - Galot Motorsports Park, North Carolina
23rd-24th September: Rock - Rockingham Dragway, North Carolina
17th-19th November: World Finals - Valdosta, Georgia

For more information on the Gulf Oil Dragracing team please visit their web site at www.gulfoildragracing.com, their Facebook page, and their YouTube Channel at www.youtube.com/kingracingpuma.

The Gulf Oil Dragracing team uses and endorses exclusively Gulf Oil greases and lubricants in their history making machine. The team is extremely proud to be supported by many leaders in their chosen markets in their participation in the 2017 USA National Championship:

APE - The world's most innovative manufacturer of aftermarket parts for drag bikes
Bell Helmets (UK) - The most iconic name in helmets, since 1954
Cometic Gaskets - The premier manufacturer of racing gaskets
Gates - The world's most trusted name in drive belts, hoses and hydraulics
Goodridge - The original and the best in fluid transfer systems
Grand Prix Originals - The brand for drive and lifestyle, past and present
Graphite Additive Manufacturing - A leader in 3D printed technologies and rapid prototyping
Gulf Oil International - The world's most iconic brand in automotive fuels and lubricants
Hotrod Hangar– Home of the world renowned custom artist Knud Tiroch
Hyperpro - The leading producer of progressive suspension products for motor bikes
JE Pistons - The world's premier manufacturer of high performance forged pistons
John and Dea Morgan Racing - The creators of the world's most advanced New Age Funny Bike
Kibblewhite Precision Machining, Inc -The highest quality valve train components on the market
Mickey Thompson Tyres - Simply the best drag race tyres in the world
MRE - Leaders in trackside support for drag race components and air shifting systems
MTC Engineering - Manufacturer of clutches for the fastest motorcycles in the world
NitroShutter - Europe's leading drag racing photo-journalists
NCT Engineering - Manufacturer of the world's leading non contact torque sensors for motorsport
NGK Spark Plugs UK - The world's number one spark plug manufacturer
Pär Willen - Master webmeister and proprietor of HarleyDrags.com
Portable Shade - The best custom branded collapsible canopies available
Pro Alloy Motorsport - UK's leader in fabrication of alloy racing tanks, intercoolers and radiators
Trim-Tex - The premier manufacturer of vinyl drywall beads and accessories
Tryka LED - The UK's cutting edge LED lighting manufacturer
Van Es mobility - The leading manufacturer of telematic products for management of moving objects
Vanson Leathers - The most iconic brand in motorsport leather goods
Web Camshafts Inc - Simply the company for Top Fuel Bike camshafts
Worldwide Bearings - The world's leading supplier of ceramic bearings for racing
Zodiac - Europe's largest supplier of performance and aftermarket HD parts


Web site updates.
6th April: In the latest instalment of his exclusive Racer Blog presented in association with Gearhead Garage Paul Marston brings us up to date with the construction of his twin-turbo Cortina. You can take a look by clicking here or by clicking on the Gearhead Garage Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Are you the mystery girl?
4th April: Upon inspecting our pictures from Saturday's Run What You Brung at Santa Pod Raceway we were impressed to see this on-track passenger staring straight down the lens of your News Editor's camera.

We figure that the girl in question did so deliberately, so now we need to track her down so that we can forward her a copy of the picture. The car was a very well-turned-out red 2015 Ford Fiesta ST and ran in the right lane at 19:07 on Saturday (click on picture at right to see the car).

If this is you, or if you know who it is, then please get in touch or put her in touch with us at editor@eurodragster.com.


The Clencher rolls away.
4th April: After many years building The Clencher 100e and then undergoing cycles of racing, crashing, repairing and racing again the UK's Duncan Scott decided that the time had come to sell the car:

All of my friends tried to talk me out of it (sorry Charlie) but it had to go. Adverts were placed and a buyer was found, but he only wanted the car as a roller as he has a bigger (!) engine than the one in the car. And I thought I was nuts!

So the engine is now for sale at a very reasonable price under Parts For Sale the Jeff Bull Race Engines Swap Meet. So to all you wannabe Supercharged Outlaws or any other class for that matter it's time to grab a bargain.

Don't worry, I'm not giving up racing. The Clencher will be reborn into a different 100e, this time a Gasser. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who helped me with the car over the years. I could do a list but this web site has limited space! Suffice to say thanks, its been epic, you all know who you are.


Kicking off the Dart era.
4th April: Nigel Taylor writes that Arthur Bonner, original builder and driver of the Detroit Spinner Prefect, is ready to make his return to the drag strip at this weekend's Public Test and Tune at Shakespeare County Raceway:

The Ford Prefect is now fitted with a 555 ci Dart motor mated to the Fairbanks Clutch Turbo 400 gearbox, so the Test and Tune side of things is probably a wise move as Arthur has always run Pontiac power. This new powerplant era should liven the old gal up a little and may take a little getting used to. Arthur originally built this car in a shed at the bottom of his garden and originally raced it over forty years ago! A great engineer, welder, racer and mechanic, Arthur is now seventy five years old and more enthusiastic than ever.


Thanks for all the support from everybody involved: Sophie Taylor, Elisha Taylor, Kenzie Taylor, Fletcher Taylor; Kelvin Helsdown, KH Refrigeration 01264 363646; Graham Smith, Sercks Motorsport 0208 813 7470; Andy Frost, Penn Autos 01902 344004; Peter Borrett, saunashop.com 01722 746050; Justin Horne, Joust Performance (Paint Shop) and Recovery 07767 614638; Paul Dale, PDH Carpentry 07717 583537; Dave Fulton, Allens Van Centre 01189 813623; Andover Trailers 01264 358944; Mark Gardner, Performance Products / Nitrous 07514 013240 (or contact Serck Motorsport); Shakespeare County Raceway 01789 720180 / 414119; Jeff Bull / Belinda Bull, Racing Engines 01787 227789; Jimmy Hibberd, Valley Gas Speed Shop 01264 353646; Cliff Hepton, American Motor Factors 07821 578066; Darren Pritchett Haulage / Tippers 07785 521932; Michael Hawkins, Get Plastered Plastering; Rob-co Tooling; Phil Mansbridge The Mobile Mechanic 07900 285549; Arthur Bonner; Graham True; Jeff Goddard; Bob Hancox (Runaway Prefect); Chris Cotton; Cindy Cotton; Col Law (Outlaw Anglia); Ben Waldron; Leslie Waldron; Steve Dale; Stephen Lowth; Anita Lowth; Stuart Ashton; Rob Gregory; Edward Ede;Nick Dunford; Richard Hicks; Neil Gibbs; James Gilmour; William Underhill; Mark Timson; Colin Millar (the Flyin' Fyfer team); Richy Barnett Editorial; Oscar Jack Meaton; JP Santos; Denise Moore; Danny Mitty; Mandy Darlison; Mick Patey; Pete Harrison; Kirsty Cleall; Ray Andrews; John Gale; Andy Cummins; Keith Cummins; Steve Baker (engine crane); Andrew Meaton (engineering); Les N Andrea Tubby; John Jbchevy; David and Pam Whatley; Steve Jones, Old Bones Custom Fabrications 07969 982769; Owlselbury Crankshaft Services 01962 855969.


Swift snippets.
4th April: Best wishes for a rapid recovery from Tog, Simon, Kirstie and Julian to Eurodragster.com Contributing Photographer Grace Roaf who has an arm in a cast after her motorbike rudely declined to carry her any further on Sunday. It could have been a lot worse but for Grace's mechanical knowledge and presence of mind as she had realised that something was amiss and had already taken mitigating action before the bike suddenly took its leave of her. Those who know Grace will not be at all surprised to hear that she is not letting her injury beat her and that she is carrying on more or less normally. Get Fully Fixed Soon Grace, this year's first photographic job with us is fast approaching.

We will be testing the Eurodragster.com Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam at this weekend's Run What You Brung (Saturday) and GTi Festival (Sunday) at Santa Pod Raceway. As the kit is on test, broadcast may stop and start without warning, the sound level may go up and down, and captions may appear at random. You can check out this season's webcast schedule by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. Please be sure to read both the coverage schedule and the webcam landing page carefully, as queries already answered on either page will not be answered.


Web site updates.
4th April: The Mad Welshman has updated his Flickr site with a gallery of shots from the Saturday of Shakespeare County Raceway's recent first Public Test Weekend. You can check out Mad's pictures at www.flickr.com/photos/the_madwelshman.

New partners in education.
4th April: Santa Pod Raceway and Bedford College have launched a pioneering new initiative designed to benefit members of the College's special-needs community. A two-part pilot scheme finds Santa Pod providing workplace experience to selected students among the community.

The pilot scheme began in February when Santa Pod displayed a Top Fuel Dragster on Bedford College's campus. The display enabled students to view and examine at close quarters the most powerful type of racing machine in world motorsport – capable of generating 10,000 brake horsepower and reaching 300 mph in just four seconds. A fortunate few were even able to squeeze into the tight confines of the car's cockpit.

Part two of the pilot scheme will take place this Easter weekend when selected members of the student community attend Santa Pod's Festival of Power. The students will shadow members of the Santa Pod staff to learn for themselves the diversity of work involved in conducting a large-scale public event.

Santa Pod's Commercial Manager Caroline Holden explains: "Despite our Northamptonshire postcode, Santa Pod is a Bedfordshire business, and we're always keen to pursue initiatives that will benefit our home county. We were delighted when Bedford College contacted us to explore the possibilities of such a programme and we hope that, as it develops, it will provide significant value to the College and its special-needs community. It's a rare opportunity for the students, for sure, but we think it might also offer a valuable experience to our staff members, giving them a fresh insight into the work they do."

The initiative was the brainchild of Bedford College's Supported Employment Co-ordinator, Gareth Scorer, who says: "When I approached Santa Pod with an ambitious idea that combined a visit from Santa Pod and a final work experience project for several students to have an opportunity to work at the Festival Of Power, I never imagined just how successful the visit to college would be; how fascinated all the students were and just how much support has been shown by Santa Pod in making this ambitious project come alive. The students selected to work at the Festival Of Power are extremely excited and feel very privileged to be given this opportunity. I anticipate developing a range of projects that will enhance what Santa Pod already offers and support our students to gain valuable work skills."

"If this pilot scheme works as well as we anticipate", says Caroline Holden, "I expect there will be further practical links we might develop with Bedford College, and we look forward to building the connection."


The 'Bird hatches.
3rd April: If there has ever been a Superbird with the right to carry that name with pride, then it is the Voodoo Hemi Racing 1970 Plymouth Superbird which was unveiled on Saturday evening in Wateringen, The Netherlands. Remco Scheelings writes:

When the curtain was pulled back and the smoke disappeared, a loud round of applause arose from the audience for Marck Harteveld's spectacular, 3000 bhp Pro Modified destined for the 2017 MSA British and FIA European Pro Modified Championships.


"The whole team did a fantastic job to get the car ready in just a few months, and the outcome is really fantastic", said a proud Marck Harteveld about the flashy green and purple Superbird (Designed by Eurodragster.com sponsor Peter Walters Race Design - Ed).

Those who are familiar with the team's projects know that these projects are always special but, once again, the audience was surprised at the first glimpse of the creation. The silver-grey Dodge Daytona which rolled into the shop in September last year was turned into a spectacular Plymouth Superbird. In addition to the outside of the Superbird, Voodoo Hemi Racing also spent many hours to rebuild and renew the inside of the ex-Pete Farber NHRA Pro Mod. The team made some adjustments to the chassis, welded some parts of it and painted it again, renewed the wiring, and all other parts were inspected, adjusted or renewed when necessary. Although the 526 cubic inch Hemi engine and driveline are from the team's 2016 Pro Mod, the engine was stripped, inspected and rebuilt as well.


Last year Marck Harteveld surprised by finishing his rookie year in seventh position in the FIA European Pro Modified Championship, claiming runner-up spot in the prestigious NitrOlympX and setting stunning personal bests of 6.12 seconds and 231 mph (372 km/h). "With the same 3,000 bhp we had last year, but a much lighter and 100% Pro Modified-designed car, we will try to break the five-second barrier this season", said Marck.

The new Voodoo Hemi Racing '70 Plymouth Superbird will make its track debut at the FIA / FIM Main Event at Santa Pod Raceway, round one of the 2017 FIA European Pro Modified Championship. The team plan to do three more races of the MSA British Pro Modified Championship and two more rounds of the FIA European Championship this season. "We wanted to make our first runs at Easter at Santa Pod, but as there are still some parts on their way from the States we are running out of time and don't want to take any risks with a new car" said Marck about Voodoo Hemi Racing's difficult decision.


Swift snippets.
3rd April: Congratulations to UK Jet pilot Martin Hill who blasted both of his PBs with runs of 5.077 seconds (yesterday) and 306.27 mph (Saturday) in the Fireforce 5 Jet Dragster. We were fortunate enough to be testing our webcast kit at Santa Pod at Santa Pod on Saturday and happened to have our primary cameras recording so we were able to edit together a video of Martin's 306 mph run...


...as well as a video of one of Roger Goring's check-out passes in the Firestorm Jet FC. We also posted a small gallery from Saturday's Run What You Brung which is presented in association with John Woolfe Racing and which you can check out by clicking here.

If you fancy crewing on a Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator car then Adrian Booth is looking for team members to join him for an assault on the class in 2018. Adrian, who is based in the Halifax area, offers the chance to be involved in the construction of the car and says that body or paintwork skills would be an advantage although not as essential as enthusiasm. More details under Drivers / Crew Required on our Jeff Bull Race Engines-sponsored Swap Meet.

Not really a spy picture, more of an exclusive. With the Festival of Power fast approaching, and with memories of 2008 still as clear as if it were yesterday, UK Gearhead Garage UK Super Pro ET racer Phil Toppin has been in touch to show that he is prepared for any eventuality next week.

Thanks to Ian Marshall for sending us the final version of the official entry list for Big Bang, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd). You can check it out by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. If you have any queries about Big Bang entry then you can contact Ian Marshall at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.

Our good friend Lena Perés has been in touch to let us know that she has posted a feature about the Top Doorslammer plans of Finland's Laura Saksa on the Drag Racing Europe Blog. You can check it out by clicking here.

Congratulations to the single reader, namely DD of the Podington Peas, who realised that Saturday's story about Santa Pod Raceway's LED Christmas Tree contained a significant April Fool element, although not of course a filament. That SPR's Christmas Trees are all to be fitted out for LEDs is of course true, but that each LED has to be inserted by hand was complete BS as was the pay-off line about the scoreboards. Congratulations DD; you will be notified of your prize verbally (Have a guess - Ed).


(Lots) more on LEDs.
1st April: Further to yesterday's news item, work is continuing apace to install the LED lighting system into Santa Pod Raceway's Christmas Tree in time for its first use at the Pro Peak Performance Test and Tune Day on 13th April and then the Festival of Power. Timekeeper David Anniwell told Eurodragster.com that it could be a close thing.

"We have to install each LED by hand", said David. "That sounds easy enough but the LEDs are very small, there are eighty LEDs in each bulb, and on there are thirty bulbs on a Championship Tree. We are installing and soldering in shifts. Kieran takes over from me when I need a break and Adam and James are lined up to take their turn."

When the Christmas Tree upgrade is complete the next project is to change the finish line scoreboards to LEDs. David said that the scoreboards use the same LEDs as the Christmas Tree so it will be a major undertaking.


Swift snippets.
1st April: DD and all of the Podington Peas asked us to say a big Happy Birthday to Santa Pod Barn legend Charlie Chicken. We are very happy to do so, have a great day Charlie.

Extra burnouts at Santa Pod.
1st April: The European Burnout Championship is set to hold its first round of 2017 at Santa Pod Raceway on the Saturday of the Festival of Power (15th April). EBC have been working with the Australian originators and organisers to bring the Championship to the shores of the UK and after the first test event at Ultimate Street Car in 2016 they are set for a smokey 2017!

So how can you get involved and what are the rules? Well, it's pretty simple:
  • Get your entry ticket via www.fueltopia.co.uk. It's just £20 to enter with a prize purse of £100 up for grabs.
  • Each driver is able to take one attempt per session
  • Scores will be marked out of a 300 judged total (400 if guest judge)
  • Please look out for flags when on track
    1. Red- STOP. Run deemed as dangerous and will be a DNF (fire, fluid leak, dangerous driving etc)
    2. Yellow- Start your run
  • Burnouts must last longer than one minute but no more than two minutes. Less or more results in point deductions (one per every five seconds), we will sound fog horn at one minute and two minutes
  • Time starts at drop of flag until both tyres are burst, the driver has decided to end his/her run by either coming to a complete stop, by crossing the finish line.
  • Start area marked with coloured cones
  • The entry is a straight line entry and control will be awarded points
  • Helmets and long sleeved/legged clothing must be worn
Full rules are available via the European Burnout Championship Facebook page.

You can check out footage from 2016 by clicking here.


Attention FIM Europe racers.
31st March: Drag Bike racers who wish to contest this year's FIM European Drag Bike Championships and who have not yet registered are advised that registration us now possible via the on-line shop at
www.tgeurope.eu.

SPR Tree goes LED.
31st March: Darren Prentice tells us that Santa Pod Raceway will be this season be using a Christmas Tree with LED lights. The first outing for the new LED Tree will be at the Pro Peak Performance Test and Tune Day on Thursday 13th April, and then it will be in competitive use from the Festival of Power on 14th-16th April.

Electric Juniors for UK.
31st March: Further to David Withington's news item of 6th March Phil Evans, who heads up the UK's Tech Committee as well as serving on the FIA Drag Racing Commission, tells us that work is underway to introduce Electric Junior Dragsters to UK competition:

At the last Technical Committee meeting we discussed the possibility of allowing Electric Junior Dragsters to run in competition with conventionally-powered cars and consequently I have been in touch with the America's National Electric Drag Racing Association to discuss the adoption of their rules, as NHRA and IHRA have done. I have been communicating with John Metric who is the Technical Director of NEDRA and they are pleased for us to base our rules on their regulations. Apparently both Jonny Smith and Sam Young have built their vehicles using the NEDRA construction rules as a guideline.

For complete information please see the NEDRA Electric Junior Dragster rules at www.nedra.com/jr_dragsters.html. You will see that they retain the basic ET structure with the age category catered for by altering voltages (i.e. power available). The construction of the chassis is to the same standard as conventional cars.

If anybody wants to discuss this matter then please E-Mail me at p.evans@atlanticfluidtech.com. I plan to hold a mid-season tech meeting and electric vehicles will be high on the agenda.


Swift snippets.
31st March: Longtime readers will remember our 2015 April Fool, which amongst other things convinced a large number of readers that model Melanie Bond would be fronting our Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcasts. In an amusing case of life imitating art Eurodragster.com received a marketing E-Mail from a French company offering us a similar service (right). So you see people lift our ideas even when we're joking...

Today (Friday) is the closing date for standard-fee entry to Big Bang, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd). You can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. You can check out the current Big Bang entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. If you have any queries about Big Bang then you can contact Ian Marshall at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.

Kuwait's Hussain Al Shammari is planning a return to FIA European Championship competition in 2017, this time in his own Camaro. You can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.


VP Racing Fuels renew SPR contingency.
31st March: Santa Pod Raceway are pleased to announce that VP Racing Fuels will be continuing their Sportsman-class contingency  scheme at UK and ACU National Championship rounds at Santa Pod:

VP Racing Fuels and Santa Pod Raceway will be offering one nineteen-litre pail of any VP fuel to the winner in the following classes at the Festival of Power, FIA / FIM Main Event, SPRC Summernationals, FIA / FIM European Finals and UK National Finals:
  • Super Pro ET
  • Pro ET
  • Super Comp
  • Super Gas
  • Junior Dragster
  • Super Street Bike
  • 8.50 Bike
  • 9.50 Bike
To be eligible for this fantastic offer:
  • Teams must purchase their VP Racing Fuels from the Pod Shop or from Santa Pod Raceway's on-line store
  • Teams must display two VP Racing Fuels stickers on their race vehicle; these can be collected from Signing On or from the Pod Shop / Garage
  • The team must have won at any of the above events in their selected class
To claim their prize teams should take their VP Racing Fuels voucher and proof of purchase to the Santa Pod Shop.


UK event entry update.
29th March: This Friday (31st) is the closing date for standard-fee entry to Big Bang, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd); you can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at
www.eurodragster.com/sprc. You can check out the current Big Bang entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 11 of the official entry list for the Festival of Power, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 14th-16th April. You can check out the entry list on our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

If you have any queries about Big Bang or Festival of Power entry then you can contact Ian Marshall at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.

Official entry forms for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th April-1st May, are available to download from the Downloads page of the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.


One Daimler good, two...
29th March: UK Super Pro ET racer Robin Read has been in touch to let us know that he has picked up his new 250" wheelbase dragster from Wayne Allman's Intergalactic Custom Shop:

I would like to thank the hugely-talented and multi-faceted Wayne for his input and effort with the project so far.

Once we got the car back to our own workshop we carried out a full appraisal of the overall project, which we then set against our own requirements and expectations. We realised that there were areas of design and construction which we needed to adjust. The process of turning a metal fabrication into a functional race car has already started and it is still our wish to be testing later this year.


We have not been idle with our historic and iconic record-holding Daimler-powered dragster. After running 6.84/193 in October 2016 it was felt that the first 200 mph pass from a British-engined dragster was not only possible but achievable with our little car. But! We needed taller gears again than the 3.5 to 1 ratio which we had previously run. Such gears are not available and in fact not even manufactured any more . The only way forward was to go for a taller tyre to increase the roll-out per revolution but this wasn't possible with our old wheels and so we acquired some period Centreline Convo Pro wheels and tyres from Chris Orthodoxou. The new (old) wheels and tyres had a different bolt pattern and were taller and wider than our old wheels and tyres so we had to make new hubs. Whilst we were doing this and taking into account the increase in loading we upgraded to 5/8" diameter wheel studs and also upgraded both the spool and drive shafts from 30-spline to 35-spline Mark Williams components. The 40 spline outer drive plates were designed and manufactured by ourselves.

We thought that Dragstalgia 2017 would be a good choice to make the attempt at 200 mph and we will work towards that. We will have to go testing before that meeting as the whole car has had a rebuild and freshen.

I would like to thank my crew for their endless and enthusiastic support with cars old and new: Bertie Hopkinson and Mark Evans, and of course Ella Chapman and Bill Mears. It certainly wouldn't happen without them.


Swift snippets.
29th March: Good luck and stay safe to Jonnie Lindberg (Fuel FC), Fred Hanssen (Top Alcohol Dragster) and Rob Turner (Top Alcohol FC) who are contesting this weekend's Denso Spark Plugs NHRA Nationals in Las Vegas and to Adam Flamholc and Mattias Wulcan who are contesting this weekend's PDRA East Coast Nationals at Galot. You will be able to stay in touch with our heroes' progress courtesy of Dragracecentral.com and the PDRA race will be webcast on Speedvideo.com. Don't forget the Lindberg brothers' awesome and frequently-updated web site and Facebook page.

Per Bengtsson's company Bentec Engineering has signed up as a contingency sponsor for EDRS Pro Top Fuel Bike and Supertwin. You can find out more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

No news update yesterday, for which apologies, so we were unable to say a big Happy Birthday to race car builder, tuner, British Drag Racing Hall of Fame member and longtime Eurodragster.com supporter Rob Loaring and to Jan Phersson of Eurodragster.com sponsor Simpson Europe. Hope you had great days, guys.


Fast Show Live.
29th March: The UK's first permit race of the year is Round 1 of the 2017 FWD Drag Series which takes place at this weekend's Fast Show at Santa Pod Raceway and you will be able to tune on Facebook for live video of the racing plus other show highlights. Like Santa Pod Raceway on Facebook and turn on notifications for live posts to be among the first to check out the action. Nitro FM will be broadcasting from 18:00 on Saturday evening at www.eurodragster.com/nitrofm.

The Eurodragster.com Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam will start this year's broadcasts with a test at the RWYB and GTi Festival at Santa Pod Raceway on 8th-9th April followed by the Pro Peak Performance Test and Tune Day on 13th April.


Web site updates.
29th March: Congratulations to our good friend Alan Currans who is celebrating fifty years following drag racing. Alan's first update this season is a gallery of Saturday's action at the Public Test and Tune at Shakespeare County Raceway. You can check out the latest update via What's New at www.theaccelerationarchive.co.uk.

Nostalgia fans will want to speed over to Dick Parnham's Flickr site which has been updated with a gallery of the NDRC event at Radlett in 1978. You can find Dick's shots at www.flickr.com/photos/dickparnhamdragracing.


US Automotive back BDRHoF Gala.
29th March: Another regular British Drag Racing Hall of Fame supporter has announced that it will be sponsoring the 2017 BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner which is being held at the Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge on Saturday 18th November. That company is American parts supplier US Automotive which has helped fund the Hall of Fame since it was established in 2006.

Bedford-based US Automotive currently stocks in excess of 20,000 product lines which cover the most popular applications from the classics of the 1950s up to current models and are updated regularly to follow market trends. The company supplies parts from the most respected American manufacturers, including Crane Cams, Fel-Pro Gaskets, Clevite Engine Bearings, Sealed Power and TRW Engine Components, and provides full technical support not only for its product range but also for American vehicles in general.

As a Primary Sponsor, US Automotive's sponsorship is extensive and includes funding the Souvenir Programme production costs, co-sponsoring the Junior Drag Racing tables and table wine for all tables, plus help in other areas.

BDRHoF Honorary Chairman Stu Bradbury, who worked for US Automotive for many years, said "I was working at US Automotive when I set up the BDRHoF back in 2006 and when I floated the idea to them they immediately made a decision to help fund things and have sponsored us every year since. It is no exaggeration to say that without them the BDRHoF would not exist and I can't thank them enough for their encouragement and financial support."

US Automotive Chairman Stewart Bassett said "We are pleased to continue our support of the BDRHoF team who throughout the whole year put in an amazing amount of voluntary work to celebrate drag racing pioneers in style. The Annual Gala Awards Dinner is a fabulous event and we are proud to be associated with it. It has become one of my favourite social occasions of the year. This one will be extra special for us because US Automotive is celebrating its 20th Anniversary."

The BDRHoF is now taking reservations for the 2017 Gala Awards Dinner by E-Mail at stuart@britishdragracinghof.co.uk or by telephone at 01933 279102. This year the tickets are priced competitively at £65 which includes a pre-dinner reception. The event always sells out well in advance, so if you would like to join us for the occasion we suggest you make your reservation sooner rather than later. On receiving your reservation you will be given the procedure to book rooms at the negotiated room rate that includes breakfast and VAT as well as parking.

On-going news about the Gala, sponsors and other events in which the BDRHoF is involved will be published on the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame web site at www.britishdragracinghof.co.uk, on Eurodragster.com, and on Facebook and Twitter.


Smax feels the heat in Florida.
27th March: Ex-pat UK Top Fuel Dragster racer Smax Smith has been in touch with a report of his weekend at the NHRA Gatornationals, where he was again driving the Leverich family's car:

After one of our best seasons ever Gary Leverich and I reflected on what we had achieved in 2016. We had attended only six NHRA races but qualified and ended up twenty second of thirty eight teams! We ran our first four-second quarter-mile pass at 4.9, got to the finals at the Mopar Nationals at Grand Bend, then won the Canadian Nitro Nationals at Toronto Motorsport Park and ran my Personal Best of 4.84 with the blower belt coming off before 1200 feet - it would have been a 4.79/310. Not to mention meeting some of the best names in drag racing!

With that in mind we now want to run our first three-second 300 mph thousand-foot pass so, confident we could achieve that, Gary made the call to go to the Gators in Florida. Unfortunately my boy Aidan couldn't come as he had other plans that weekend, which was a bummer, but Gary has friends in Florida who help him a lot. Mark Jones, Eric and Richard were to meet us there while Jacob (bottom end), Dan (cylinder head) and I drove to Detroit to catch a flight to Orlando on Thursday night. Gary and Bob Leverich drove the truck and trailer the twenty two hours but before setting off on Wednesday night found a flat tyre but everywhere was closed. Gary put a plug in but the truck tyre was too thick so he drove onto the spike and successfully penetrated the tyre so he could set off. Needs must! We arrived at midnight then got a rental car and drove to the motel, finally getting to meet up with Lee Webb of the Shockwave team, who flew over to help us, at 2:30 am - he was waiting with a beer! We set the alarm for 5:30 am as we had a  long drive to the track and there was a mandatory meeting for drivers and owners at NHRA Hospitality at 9:00! We made it just on time only having had a fast food brekky, Jake and Dan had hit Denny's at 2:30 am so that they could survive. The meeting was really positive that since Fox Sports 1 and 2 had taken over the TV the viewership had increased over 300% and sponsorship now looking a lot tastier now!

Gary and Bob had arrived the night before and got the car all tecched so we planned to do Q1. But then NHRA came over and complained that our Butler head restraint had been tampered with so had to miss Q1 and go see Alan at Simpson to do a repair- thanx to Aaron from Hans who darted around to find SFI material. NHRA also said to retag our mags so we had big thrash and were ready for Q2. We had some concerns over oil pressure but still decided to go out qualify.

We put English Lee out in front as my boy Ronan didn't attend either. I did a short burnout and backed up, then after stopping a chute fell out so I had to shut off. Bummer! We went back and Mark Fedexed two new cables from California whilst I went to see my hero Scott Palmer who gave us two chutes as he had just got a sponsor deal for two new chutes on his car, he also gave us one bag! We got everything ready and hit the Texas Steakhouse but there was a long wait so went to Denny's for food then next with Lee to an Irish pub for green beer and St Paddy's Day!

Had to get up early again to get the car ready for Q3 as we were the only car not qualified. Fast food brekky and jumped back on the car. Fired up but no oil pressure! Long story short, Gary discovered the system one filter screen was plugged even though clean, so left it out and got all the pressure back... phew! With chutes fixed and oil pressure figured this was our chance for that three-second pass. Racing against Shawn Reed I did a nice burnout, staged nice and left first but 250 feet out it went bang and shut off. As I had no radios or mirrors I didn't know that I had had a huge fireball so I just trickled over the finish line at 23 mph in fifteen seconds to make sure that we were qualified. I sat in the car until the Safety Safari put the fire out.

Back in the pits it was another story. The brand new rod #1 rod had disintegrated and exited the block. We lost five points for the oildown. So a huge CSI to find out what happened, as the piston, pin and rod bearing were OK and the data didn't show a misfire we were thinking rod failure but we were not sure. We asked Todd Okuhara of Schumacher's team to look and he felt that we had an ignition malfunction causing a hydraulic and catastrophic rod failure. We pulled the whole ignition off the car and Aaron Grant came over with Audrey to help so he went through our ignition. Todd kindly offered to take all our stuff back and check through it for free! MSD had just checked the mags and Scott Palmer gave us two coils, Aaron checked the boxes and harnesses and rewired whilst I looked at our dated kill switch. Many thought that could have been an issue although we replaced our mag clamps with billet off Scott Palmer's team. We put our spare short block in and thrashed to the wee hours, although I sneaked over to Larry Dixon's pit to meet his amazing family and have a little food. I didn't see much qualifying but said Hi to our man Jonnie Lindberg. We got back to the hotel at around 2:00 am, a quick beer at the Irish pub then a hot bath and set the alarm for 5:30 am!

The first round was scheduled for 11:00 am and I had number one qualifier Tony Schumacher. There was only 305 mph difference between #1 and #16! We got all done and fired up, scared the crap out of the fans with Gary's huge nitro whacks and got a standing ovation. We got such a warm welcome and lots of fans wishing us on. I went down to the driver introduction with Audrey and connected with a lot of drivers as well as getting asked for autographs from fans who thought I was Sammy Hagar! We got the call and towed down. Did my burnout then disaster! The brakes were failing so I shot past Lee and rolled to a stop, got in reverse and not wanting to use up what was left I backed up real slow so I wouldn't risk backing into anyone. All was OK even though everyone including the TV announcer was wondering why but I had to keep my cool as no radios. I then went to pre-stage the car but it rolled through into deep stage. I waited for Tony to pre-stage then highsided but on the yellows I redlit. I went to 300 feet and the car shook so I lifted and rolled to a stop. There was brake fluid on the track which counted as oildown #2 and on race day you lose five points and pay a fine of $2000.

I was bit disappointed. I went to Tony Schumacher's pit to apologise and explain what had happened but he was cool. We then went to service the car for Audrey to do licencing runs on Monday but disaster again - we had spun bearings, not sure why, so couldn't risk the line bore. We packed up and headed to the Texas Steakhouse for drinks and food... I think I was the only vegetarian in the place! Friend Les and Gary and his granddaughter had driven their RV from Canada so we shot over and picked them up too. Saw Jonnie, Johan and Karsten in there then I was going to party with Palmer's gang back at the track but found out that he was at a racers' bar so we turned around and joined him. Over the course of the weekend it was great to see Liam Jones and Gary Page as well as Monique and Roel Koedam, Stig Neegaard and his missus and Andy Wilsheer. On Sunday night Gary was with Tommy Johnson Jr at the same bar, a great night then back to the track to party in Les' RV then finally back to motel around 3:00 am, one last beer in the Irish pub with Jake and Lee. Lee was a great help all weekend and helped Jake on the bottom end while Mark Jones helped Gary, Eric worked on the clutch, and Richard ran around doing everything and proved his worth. It was a shame that Aidan wasn't there though.

As Audrey was not running and our flight home wasn't until 6:30 pm we went back to the track to watch testing. Watched and chatted to Anthony from Gas Monkey and Ulf Leanders as well as watching Nitro Funny Cars testing. The big highlight was Nico from Iron Maiden who was with the Tequila team, I got to chat to him and Maiden are touring so he invited our crew to the show in New Jersey when we are at Englishtown. Gary is a huge Maiden fan and has offered to wrap our car to promote their tour so see we'll see how that pans out, but it's positive!

We'll hopefully get all our damage sorted and head to Charlotte for the Four Wide at the end of April. I will race and we will test with Audrey on the Monday. Hopefully all of the minor dramas of last weekend are behind us and the crew will be dialled in to the car and back on the mission for that three-second pass. Big thanks to Gary and Bob and all the crew for their really hard work all weekend.


Swift snippets.
27th March: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came with no words. If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.

We were very pleased to hear that Germany's Werner Habermann Racing will be fielding both Timo's and Dennis' Top Methanol Dragsters on the full FIA European Championship Tour this season. Stay tuned for more.

EDRS Comp Eliminator Champion and full-time genius PerErik Lindgren will be swapping his dragster for a Doorslammer this season. Courtesy of our good friend Lena Perés you can read all about it on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

Your News Editor stopped by Santa Pod Raceway on Saturday to plan the installation of the webcam PC into the track's reconfigured network (Thanks to Julian Parsons for his time - Ed) and whilst there he photographed trackside for an hour or so. You can check out our small Run What You Brung gallery, which is presented in association with John Woolfe Racing, by clicking here.


UK event entry update.
25th March: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 7 (aka "Final-ish") of the official entry list for the Festival of Power, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 14th-16th April. You can check out the entry list on our
John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Standard-fee Festival of Power entry closed yesterday (Friday); entry may still be accepted but if so then may be subject to a Late Entry penalty.

Next Friday, 31st March, is the closing date for standard-fee entry to Big Bang, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd); you can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.

If you have any queries about Festival of Power or Big Bang entry then you can contact Ian Marshall at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.

Official entry forms for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th April-1st May, are available to download from the Downloads page of the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.


Malta's own Mister Six.
25th March: We were very pleased to hear that Simon Giordmaina's Super Street Bike, ridden by Franklyn Borg, blasted into the sixes at Malta's Hal Far Raceway last weekend. With Shawn Buttigieg also on the facility at Round 1 of the Malta Drag Racing Association Championship the race was on to the first six, as Gabriel Briffa writes: Simon, Franklyn and the team made changes to the turbocharged Suzuki Hayabusa to continue where they left off in 2016, when they set a National Super Street Bike ET Record of 7.091 seconds. It all started on Friday with back-to-back test passes of 7.24 and 7.14, going past the 200 mph mark for the first time at 200.40 and 201.4.

Meanwhile Shawn Buttigieg took over the National Record with a 7.08 pass, backed up later with a 7.07, meaning that Simon's team needed to step up their game. During Saturday qualifying everything showed that the air and track conditions were better than last November as the bike went 7.11 with a Personal Best speed of 206 mph straight off the trailer and all the incrementals showing that a six-second pass was not an impossible dream any more. Later on the team backed it up with a 7.083 at an astonishing 208.40, which made them believe that it could really happen.

After a lot of data analysis from Simon doing his magic on the MoTeC and AMS2000, and discussion with Franklyn between passes about changes in the tune-up trying to make the combination work between all of the components, the bike was ready for eliminations. The air and track conditions were ideal. The team had two set-ups ready and decided at the last minute not to go for the aggressive set-up. The bike left the line, stayed on the ground and ran a 1.23 at sixty feet, then a 4.64 eighth mile showed up on the scoreboard. We thought "This could be it". The win light went on and all the hard work paid off, 6.993 at 208.95.

It was once a dream, but not any more. Not only a National Record in its class but Simon's bike was the first Super Street Bike to run in the sevens in Malta and now the first SSB to run in the sixes, and it also puts the bike third in Europe of the active registered bikes under FIM Europe SSB rules.

It could not have been a better weekend for us after the non-stop hard work since last November: coming back and qualifying first in both SSB and Open and winning both finals. Simon, Franklyn and the whole team would like to take this opportunity to thank firstly Rodney Williford for helping and consistently pointing us in the right direction, MTC Engineering for the amazing clutch, and NLR for power control and more. A special Thank You goes from Simon to Franklyn for doing a great job riding the bike and for also helping out, to Leli for all the help, to Gabriel for the support and now Press and Media Relations, and to George for finding the time for hard work at the workshop. Special big thanks go to all the people who have always supported us and continue to do so, again the feedback from you on the stands was something special: you can never explain how happy it makes you when you see the stands cheering at what you just achieved so thank you all again. We have to say a big Well Done and Thank You to the MDRA for putting on such a great event and giving us a track which can handle what we throw at it. Thanks to our parents who support and care for us: Charles and Carmen, and Marcell and Doris. Last but not least Simon and Franklyn want to thank their wives and children for the full support they always give, even when it sometimes means less time with them. We love you and we thank you for being there backing us up all the time.

There were more National Records at Hal Far last weekend including Duncan Micallef's 4.03/303 Top Fuel Dragster record and courtesy of our good buddy Remco Scheelings you can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.


Top Fuel Dragster SFI spec updated.
23rd March: Geoff Martin of the UK's Tech Crew has been in touch to remind Top Fuel Dragster racers that an SFI chassis revision, to Spec 2.3P, was issued on 17th March.

"This means that any existing certification is no longer valid", says Geoff. "Obviously if a car is planning to compete at the FIA Main Event then it will require this revision and a recert. If anyone requires details I can forward them, please contact me at
ukchassis2@btinternet.com."

SCR open gates for 2017.
22nd March: It's the first Test and Tune Public Track Weekend of the season at Warwickshire's
Shakespeare County Raceway, Shakedown @ S-Town. Jerry Cookson writes:


With many taking full advantage of the weekend the track will host its first in a series of the popular Bracket Gamblers races open to all doorslammers and street legal cars as entrants roll the dice and hopefully they'll win some money in return! Details can be found on the ET Bracket Race Facebook page.


The weekend also features the first 2017 outing for Roger Goring's popular Firestorm Jet Funny Car as the test and development work continues before the team launch into a full programme of appearances in the UK and Europe.

The track will be open from 10.00 am each day and caters for all competitions cars, bikes and street legal machines which are all welcome to come to test those winter modifications or just shake those winter blues out of their systems!

General admission is £12 per person each day or £22 for a weekend pass, track fee is £25 each day or £40 for a weekend of unlimited runs. Helmets are required along with a full driving licence. Overnight camping is available on the purchase of a weekend ticket. Kenny's Bar will also be open on Saturday night. So for a great weekend of fun on the drag strip make it Shakespeare County Raceway this weekend! You can find out more at www.shakespearecountyraceway.com.


Swift snippets.
22nd March: Kerryanne van den Berg writes that 2016 Most Professional Appearing Team winners Shark Attack Drag Racing will be fielding no less than five racers this season and that it will be a family affair: her daughter Bobby Frazier (below) in Comp Bike, daughter Meggie Talbot in Junior Drag Bike, husband Rene van den Berg in Top Fuel Bike, nephew Tonny van den Berg also in Comp Bike, and nephew Louis Davies in ET Bike.


Complementing yesterday's report of the SFI Tour's UK stop, our good friend Lena Perés writes about the new generation of SFI inspectors attending the Swedish stop. You check it out on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

Michael Dowdy has been in touch to ask us to wish a big Happy 12th Birthday to his son, UK Junior Dragster racer Matthew Dowdy. Our pleasure, have a very Happy Birthday Matthew. "Matthew is looking forward to getting the dragster back from Hauser Race Cars where the engine has been refreshed and the harness straps updated", says Michael. "A big Thank You to Gary Lockyer of Wootton Tyre & Exhaust for his continuing support."


How to join in the Havoc.
22nd March: The next stop on the Havoc Fuel Altered's US Tour will be the Holley National Hot Rod Reunion at Bowling Green, Kentucky on 15th-17th June and Geof Stilwell of British Drag Racing Hall of Fame sponsor Beech Underwriting writes that you too can be there at an affordable price:

It's one of the biggest events of the year, with a huge car show and you are near the Corvette museum so it's a great few days.

Nashville is the nearest main airport and Bobby at Dial-a-Flight  (01732 593050) has loads of flight or fly-drive deals for those who want to support the team. If you are going then make sure you get your hotel booked as lodgings near the track are limited.

The March Meet was well attended by us Brits, so please come and support our boys.


SFI Tour hits Santa Pod.
21st March: The fourth and final leg of the 2017 European SFI Recertification Tour took place at Santa Pod Raceway yesterday (Monday). Simon went along to talk to the inspection team and racers attending:

SFI Foundation President Arnie Kuhns said that this would be his final tour and we wish him well for the future. Since becoming president of SFI Foundation in 1984, Arnie has seen it grow to encompass around one hundred member sanctioning bodies and well over three hundred individual equipment manufacturers who participate in more than eighty five specification programmes.

Arnie said "I have been involved in the SFI European Tour for more than twenty years since before the FIA Championship began and around ten years before that. The overall attitude has become more and more professional. The sanctioning bodies know what they're doing and racers are highly co-operative."

Since the passing of the much-missed Tim Hyatt in December 2015, Arnie has had his eye towards succession on the tour. This time, the place of Murf McKinney on the SFI European Tour was taken by L-G Eriksson, now running ME Racing Services in Börlange, Sweden. Luke Robinson has succeeded Tim Hyatt as clutch specialist, and Eurodragster.com sponsor Andy Robinson continues to inspect clutch cans and flexplates. The administration is handled by full-time SFI employee Jennifer Faye who commented that, whilst numbers seem to be down in all countries on the tour, there are increasing numbers of automatic transmissions in many classes.

In association with Lucas Oil Products we are pleased to present a gallery of the day which you can check out by clicking here or by clicking on the Features, Interviews, Tributes link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Whilst photographing the SFI Day for our Feature we also garnered a few Pit Notes which are presented below in the order in which we spoke to the racers:

Dave Milam of the She Devil Top Methanol Funny Car team, with driver Steph, said "Our new ex-Dan Larsen Stratus was ready at the European Finals and then the class was cancelled a week before the event. We can't see any improvement in class numbers for this year so the car is now for sale as a rolling chassis. We will be running the previous car as an altered at Dragstalgia with a modified front wing to help the drivability, and plan to extend our European record of 6.18 further."

Karl Harrison of the NUA RKS Top Methanol Dragster team is busy with Rod Harrison's car and completing the Beetle Nostalgia Funny Car due out later in the year. He said "There was very little damage last year apart from our torque converter at Hockenheim and so work has been mainly freshening. For the dragster, we will be doing the same schedule as last year: Festival of Power, Main Event, Hockenheim and European Finals. Andy's Beetle is due for a mid-season début and I will be getting involved with Simon Barlow's team later in the year as well."

Ashley Bell will be back in his familiar Super Pro ET AC Cobra with a new black paint scheme, after taking most of the last three years off, with a sole appearance at the Mopars last year. His first event this year will be in Super Pro ET at the FIA Main Event.

Jon Best will be making his return to the track in a '78 Corvette-bodied Nostalgia Funny Car. "It's the old Chaos Fuel Altered chassis which we had altered with the cage reduced in height by around eight to ten inches for a lay-down driving position and a wheelbase of 125 inches. The body is a brand-new Lowlife Customs fibreglass item from former Motorsports announcer Army Armstrong. The engine is an aluminium Big Block Chevy with Arias heads. We will be joined by US Nostalgia Top Fuel racer Brendan Murry at Dragstalgia, as our engine set-up is identical to Brendan's with the exception of a twenty one-gallon fuel pump on the Funny Car as opposed to twenty-gallon in Nostalgia Top Fuel."

Super Mod racer Peter Thompson will be making a return to racing in his '68 Chevelle after a break in driving of four years. The car crashed in 2011 and Peter had it rebuilt and out in 2012, after which he had "A year out that became four years". This time he will be racing his nitrous Powerglide machine in Competition Eliminator.

Former JDS Street racer James Willday had a low nine second RX7, last seen in 2012, but has now built a RX8 for JDS Pro and Super Pro ET or Competition Eliminator. He said "I will be out in June or July. Hauser Racing fabricated the chassis and I have been working with Stuart at Hausers on assembling the body, and the wiring which I will need to be familiar when I run the car. The engine revs to around 14,000 rpm and getting the tuning right is really important as they don't handle detonation well. My sights are on running a six eventually, and the world record for a rotary car is now in the mid-sixes."

Rob Elsom will be making his initial passes in his Dirty Deeds Firebird Nostalgia Funny Car at the Festival of Power after a two year build.


Swift snippets.
21st March: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us updated entry lists for the Festival of Power (Version 4) and Big Bang (Version 3). You can check out either entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. You can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. Standard-fee Festival of Power entry closes this Thursday (24th).

Mummy Stone remembered.
21st March: Lesley Wright hears that she was so sad to hear that Mummy Stone had passed away:

I have such fond memories of her, always smiling and laughing, it was a joy to be in her company. Whether at Santa Pod, at the Brighton show or on race trips abroad to Sweden, Italy and Switzerland you could always count on Mummy Stone – to go shopping! After making sure her 'Den', Dave, Gerry and Andrew had everything they needed for the day, she was off. Independent and resourceful she enjoyed the bits of drag racing which she wanted to and then pleased herself with her time. Always up for a cup of tea and a gossip in anyone's caravan or trailer, a breath of fresh air whenever you saw her. Mary was an inspiration in that whether at home or abroad, she would hop on a bus and take herself off on her own little adventure for the day. Always back for dinner with entertaining tales of where she had ended up and who she had spoken to. In doing this she allowed the boys the freedom to enjoy themselves too and concentrate on the racing.

She taught us girls how to survive the mistress that is drag racing, always remembered and celebrated birthdays in some small way, and made everyone feel special.

I am so grateful that Mummy Stone has been a big part in my life. My sincerest condolences to all the family.


UK Championship class sponsors.
19th March: Following negotiations between Santa Pod Racers Club and sponsors for the title rights to race classes, SPRC are pleased to announce that  
Modurstang and Gearhead Garage UK are now the title sponsors for Pro ET and Super Pro ET respectively. Modurstang and Gearhead Garage UK join long-standing Junior Dragster class sponsor Lucas Oil UK. Ian Marshall writes:

SPRC would like to welcome both companies on board and thank them for their sponsorship commitment throughout the 2017 season.

Modurstang is a highly regarded UK-based Ford Mustang performance upgrade specialist. Conducting business in Chipping Norton, Mike Lacey and his team are waiting to help prospective customers to take Mustangs from show room stock wherever their dreams want to take them. Modurstang can be contacted on 01608 678818 or via their web site at www.modurstang.co.uk.

Mick Pusey's Gearhead Garage UK are well-known for supplying American vehicles to suit customers' requirements and parts to improve existing vehicles. They can even supply bespoke garages in which to keep your pride and joy safe, warm and dry, Gearhead Garage UK can be reached on on 01335 372119 or 07973 740076, by E-Mail at info@gearhead-garage.co.uk, or via their web site at www.gearhead-garage.co.uk or of course on the right-hand side of Eurodragster.com News.

Please consider all of your sponsors, especially when looking to buy goods and services, and hopefully these good people will continue to come back and help our racers where they can.


Swift snippets.
19th March: Brian Taylor has been in touch with a tribute to Mary (Mummy) Stone who died on Wednesday. "Sad news about Mary", he says. "She was a lovely lady with no side to her at all. I have many happy memories of her and my sympathies are with the family. Drag racing has much for which to thank Mary and the Stone family."

Glen Read writes with his deepest and sincere sympathies to Dave, Vicky and all members of the Stone family. "The Reads and the Stones were strong competitors on the track but even stronger friends off the track", he says. "We travelled so many thousands of kilometers together during the 1970s and 1980s. Our overseas jaunts usually started at Review Rd where we were all welcomed, fed and watered and more. Mary was like a mum to our team also. I know that Jim used to spend weekends off-season with Dennis and Mary. He came back always heavier and happier. RIP Mummy Stone."

"So sorry to hear this sad news", says Stu Bradbury. "I have fond memories of Mary and Dennis, in fact all the Stones family. Great pioneers of drag racing. Their contributions are one of the reasons the sport exists today! Condolences to family and friends."

The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came with the words "Package on its way, delivery address Santa Pod Raceway, 1320 Airfield Boulevard, Northampton". Probably not one necessitating a rocket scientist but if you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.

No news update yesterday for which apologies (Your News Editor successfully applied for an aegrotat - Ed) so we were unable to say a big Happy Birthday to our good buddy Barry Bohannon. Hope you had a good birthday Barry, similarly we hope that Darren West of Eurodragster.com sponsor Power Race Graphics had a great birthday yesterday. On to today and big Happy Birthdays to Mick Pusey of Eurodragster.com sponsor Gearhead Garage UK, and to Nigel Payne. Have a great day both.

Father and daughter Dag and Kathrine Wagenius have been flying the flag for drag racing at the recent MC-Messen, where they also revealed their plans for the 2017 EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship. You can take a look on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

Staying with the 2017 EDRS Pro Nordic Motorcycle Championship, Kristin Hegre will be following in son Jan-Sturla's footpegs by contesting Supertwin Motorcycle in this year's Series. Again you can read more on the Drag Racing Europe Blog by clicking here.

Eurodragster.com sponsor MPM Oil has introduced MB9 Automatic Transmission Oil, a premium synthetic automatic transmission oil especially developed for the latest-generation nine-speed automatic transmission from Mercedes-Benz for which the MB-approval 236.17 is recommended. You can find out more (PDF format) by clicking here.


Fifty years of Nitro Thunder.
19th March: Celebrating fifty years of Santa Pod Raceway and thereby fifty years of Fuel racing, longtime journalist Mike Collins has compiled an in-depth feature especially for Eurodragster.com readers.

Mike's piece runs to thirty two pages, covering both the 2016 FIA European Top Fuel Dragster Championship season and the history of Fuel racing at Santa Pod Raceway since its opening day.

You can check out Mike's article, which comes in PDF format, by clicking here or by clicking on the picture at right.


PMR's double date.
19th March: Paul Marston Racing are pleased to announce that Paul's name will shortly appear in Super Gas and Super Street on the official entry list for April's Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway:

I will be driving at the opener with entries from the stable appearing in various classes as the season pans out including the inaugural No Prep Doorslammer Nationals at North Weald Dragstrip on 2nd July and in UK Top Sportsman at the Mopar EuroNationals on 28th-30th July as well as other UK Championship dates. Super Gas is where I cut my teeth, competing against what were then the very best Doorslammer drivers, and where I won first my National event, so in some ways it's like coming home. With all the effort that Jon Giles has put into securing such a great sponsor, Super Gas needs racers to show their appreciation which is why I will be competing in the class this season. Just as it was before, the class is chock-full of some very tough racers and teams. To win in Super Gas you most certainly have to earn it. Sure the money helps, but I am excited about the new challenge of running a Pro tree again. Plus it's an even field: no dragsters, just Doorslammers and the occasional roadster.

I will also be supporting Super Street. It's a great class, and as I played my part in getting SPRC to agree to the-double header at the two FIA events with the blessing of Santa Pod Raceway I thought it only fair that I run that class too.

PMR will be fielding the 100% Whoopass Chevy Monza to kick the season off, but don't be surprised to see a change of race car as the season progresses with the début of a purpose built Super Class doorslammer.

Regrettably PMR have lost some of their Super Crew over the off-season, but the Brains Trust stays intact and there will be some new additions as the season progresses. At present all the crew are hard at it prepping everything to be 100% ready for the 2017 season, all that behind-the-scenes work which makes the team tick, and so long as the weather plays ball we will be ready. Please stop by and say hello at Easter.


Mary (Mummy) Stone.
16th March: We were very sorry to hear from Vickie Stone of the death yesterday (Wednesday) of Mary 'Mummy' Stone, wife of Dennis Stone and matriarch of of the UK's legendary Stones Drag Racing Team:

Mum had returned to her roots in a County Cork, Ireland in 2014 and was enjoying a quiet life in the place where she was born. She was 91.

The picture at right was taken by the Barking and Dagenham Post many years ago when the Stones bought Stardust.

Our deepest sympathies to Vickie and to Dave, and to all of Mary's family and friends. If you would like to send a tribute to or share a story about Mary then please E-Mail us at tributes@eurodragster.com.


2017 European Top Gas calendar.
16th March: Many thanks to Herman Jolink for sending us this year's calendar for the European Supertwin Top Gas Series. Herman writes:

Twenty two European Top Gas racers held a meeting at Molln in Germany to discuss the 2017 races. Jozef Hadnagy invited us to Kunmadaras for the twentieth year celebration on 24th June and said that if we came then Top Gas could have a two-day event, but there was one vote too few so we are going to Malmö twice in 2017.

13th-15th May: Malmö, Sweden
3rd-6th June: Malmö, Sweden
14th-16th July: Drachten, The Netherlands
18th-20th August: Hockenheim, Germany
1st-2nd September: Mosten Race Days, Denmark
29th September-1st October: Drachten, The Netherlands

Herman adds that he had to say goodbye to Eurol, his sponsor of twenty five years, this year but that he will now be sponsored by Putoline Motorcycle Oil.


FIM Europe prepare for 2017...
16th March: FIM Europe Drag Racing Commission member Job Heezen has been in touch with an update from the FIM Europe Drag Bike Championships:

On 17th-1th February, the Magyar Motorsport Szövetség hosted the FIM Europe Drag Racing Commission's seminar for Clerks of the Course and Technical Steward licence holders.

Prior to the seminar, the Drag Racing Commission had a special meeting with Rezsö Bulcsu, director of FIM International's Commission of Circuit Racing together with FIM co-ordinator Victoria Corredoira. This valuable meeting was scheduled to make a first list of issues regarding the plans for the new World Cup of Drag Racing. The overall conclusion of the meeting was very positive although everybody agreed on the fact that there are a lot of issues to manage and solve. Left to right below left are Reszö Bulcsu, Jozef Hadnagy (MAMS), Victoria Corredoira, and Job Heezen, Peder Eneroth, Palle Lind and Jari Halonen all of the Drag Racing Commission.


On day two of the seminar the real work started with training courses for Clerks of the Course and the Technical Steward licencees (above right). The training and examinations for Clerks of the Course were run by Commission Chair Palle Lind and those for Tech Stewards by newly-appointed Commission member Job Heezen.

The turnout of candidates was very satisfying with people from England, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, The Netherlands and Hungary. Those trained will help to bring the quality of the officiating and scrutineering to even highers level. New rules were explained, issues from previous seasons were communicated and there was ample opportunity to exchange views during the day. Major attention was been given to the safety aspects of drag racing, a key issue for the Commission. All of the licencees should be ready for some flawless operation in seasons to come.

Many thanks to our Hungarian hosts who did a wonderful job !

FIM Europe racers and others involved can check out important matters such as rule books, rule changes etc on the FIM web site or go to the Drag Racing Commission's Facebook page.


...whilst Holmberg forgets 2016.
16th March: 2016 was not the most fortunate of seasons for Swedish Pro Stock Bike racer Kenneth Holmberg with a broken thumb necessitating wearing a cast for the first race of the season and a number of broken engines. Finishing ninth in the Championship after previous top five finishes was disappointing but Kenneth says that it is all forgotten now and that he and his team have never been so well-prepared for an upcoming season:

With two updated engines, a number of new sponsors and a tight team, we are really looking forward to 2017. Gabriella 'Gabbi' Nikolovska and Kent 'Kenta' Carlsson, our talented team members for many years, are helping us out at racers with family and friends. We will compete and focus upon all of the FIM races and we will also race in the EDRS Pro series. One of the highlights is of course racing at our home track Tierp Arena in June and August.


This year's goal is of course top position in the FIM European Championship. Hopefully there will be a World Championship at Hockenheim in 2018 if all goes as it should with the FIM and promoters.

The first round of the FIM European Championship will be held at Santa Pod Raceway in England at the end of May with great organisation and a wonderful atmosphere. Before that we have a plan to test at Malm&oum; at the end of April. See you at the track!

Thanks to our sponsors Swecomposite, Hyresbostäder Boliden, EG Nord, ProService, Bilglasdesign, Texstar, Yniq, Swedol and FHRA Feringe.


Swift snippets.
16th March: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us updated entry lists for the Festival of Power (Version 3) and Big Bang (Version 2). You can check out either entry list by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page. You can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.

Good luck and stay safe to Smax Smith (Top Fuel Dragster), Jonnie Lindberg (Fuel Funny Car) and Ulf Leanders (Top Alcohol FC) who are contesting this weekend's NHRA Amalie Gatornationals at Gainesville. Our heroes are in action from Friday and you will be able to stay in touch courtesy of the Drag Race Central web site at www.dragracecentral.com and on the racers' Facebook pages.

We would like to say a big Happy Birthday to our good friend and Honorary Eurodragster.com Staff Member John Hackney. Have a great day Hackers.


London Motor Show SPRC discount.
16th March: Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall has been in touch with news of a special discount for SPRC members:

The London Motor Show, which takes place in Battersea Park on 4th-7th May, is back again following a highly-successful event last year with over 25,000 visitors. As the show is intended for all car enthusiasts, and before the show sells out again, the Show is offering Santa Pod Racers Club members a special 10% discount on tickets. A special food and beverage area for Club members will also be on hand as a good meeting point with the added benefit of reduced rates on catering.

To use this exclusive special rate members just need to add the promo code SANTAPOD when buying tickets on-line at www.thelondonmotorshow.co.uk.


BDRHoF Gala sponsorship update.
16th March: Lucas Oil Products UK has announced that it is renewing its sponsorship of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala Awards Dinner, to be held on Saturday 18th November at the Oatlands Park Hotel, Weybridge, Surrey. Lucas Oil will be joined by Kelsey Media as joint hosts of the pre-dinner drinks reception, welcoming guests to an evening celebrating those who have helped the sport grow since its beginning in the late 1950s.

Lucas Oil also sponsors the BDRHoF Lucas Oil Global Achievement Award. In 2016 this was presented to the National Hot Rod Association for the crucial role played by NHRA and its employees in organising, governing and growing the sport of drag racing throughout its sixty five years of existence including the establishment of the FIA Drag Racing Commission which organises Championships in Europe and Australia. NHRA President Peter Clifford sent a photo and message saying how thrilled they were with the award and that they are proudly displaying it in their Glendora Headquarters' conference room.

Lucas Oil UK Managing Director Les Downey said "It is rewarding that British drag racing and Lucas Oil are represented in the sport's corridors of power in California. Our company has a long history in drag racing and also sponsors the International Drag Racing Hall of Fame based in Florida. And we are proud to continue our support of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala Awards Dinner and this year act as joint hosts of the pre-dinner drinks reception with our friends from Kelsey Media. As well as celebrating the sport's UK pioneers at the BDRHoF Gala, many of whom have become personal friends of mine, Lucas Oil is committed to celebrating the young people entering drag racing by co-sponsoring two tables for the Junior Drag Racing Champions and their families It is great that the 2017 Junior Drag Racing Champions can attend the Gala again and meet so many legends of our sport. I know they really look forward to the occasion. The British Drag Racing Hall of Fame is doing important work and I would encourage more companies to get involved". This Andy Willsheer photo was taken at the 2016 BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner and shows, from left, Les Downey of Lucas Oil Products UK, Don Schumacher and the 2016 Junior Drag Racing Champions. Sponsorship Partner and BDRHoF International Liaison Advisor Geoff Stilwell of Beech Underwriting is on the right.

British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Limited CEO Brian Taylor said "I have known Les for many years and he is a true friend of drag racing. This year the event will have a revised format aimed at streamlining the awards programme and providing more time for socialising. I can't think of anyone better to welcome guests before the Awards Dinner and set the right atmosphere of the evening and I thank him for his support."

Joining Lucas Oil this year is Kelsey Media – a business now publishing a multitude of magazines and organising events covering the automotive sector and many other areas too. A visit to their web site www.kelsey.co.uk shows you the amazing breadth of their coverage these days. The world of drag racing knows them for Custom Car, a magazine which has been helping to promote our sport since its launch in 1970. In 2007 the magazine was inducted into the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame for its long association with the sport and, along with US Automotive, sponsored the Souvenir Programme for the 2014 BDRHoF Gala Awards Dinner.

Covering everything from low-budget traditional hot rods and customs to hi-tech street rods and 300 mph dragsters, the team of writers at Custom Car bring together event coverage, technical articles, project cars, news and reviews and feature cars on a monthly basis. In addition, the magazine offers a classified section for those looking to buy and sell. It is available in print and digital format and is part of the Fast Car Entertainment event series which brings motoring enthusiasts together to celebrate their shared passion.

Managing Director of Kelsey Media Phil Weeden said "Kelsey Media, and in particular Custom Car magazine, are delighted to be supporting the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala Awards Dinner. We're equally pleased to be sharing that support with a brand of repute like Lucas Oil. Custom Car magazine is part of a growing family of motoring publications, web sites and events at Kelsey Media. All have a passion for motoring at their heart. The knowledge and enthusiasm for cars in particular is especially evident in a brand like Custom Car magazine, which has been around now for over forty years, reflecting the best in hot rods, customs and drag racers."

Honorary Chairman of the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Stu Bradbury said "Custom Car is part of our family, being inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007, and it is very rewarding that they are supporting us again. I remember when the magazine was launched and what a difference it made to how drag racing was perceived by the public and sponsors. Of all the titles out there this is the one that has shown longevity in its association with our sport and it is a special pleasure to welcome them back as a sponsor."

The BDRHoF is now taking reservations for the 2017 Gala Awards Dinner by E-Mail at stuart@britishdragracinghof.co.uk or by telephone at 01933 279102. This year the tickets are priced competitively at £65 which includes a pre-dinner reception. The event always sells out well in advance, so if you would like to join us for the occasion we suggest you make your reservation sooner rather than later. On receiving your reservation you will be given the procedure to book rooms at the negotiated room rate that includes breakfast and VAT as well as parking.

On-going news about the Gala, sponsors and other events in which the BDRHoF is involved will be published on the British Drag Racing Hall of Fame web site at www.britishdragracinghof.co.uk, on Eurodragster.com, and on Facebook and Twitter.


UK event entry update.
14th March: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 2 of the official entry list for the Festival of Power, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 14th-16th April. You can check out the entry list on our
John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Thanks also to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 1 of the official entry list for Big Bang, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing 22nd-23rd). You can check out the entry list on our John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Big Bang Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Festival of Power entry closes on 24th March and Big Bang entry closes on 31st March; you can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. If you have any queries about Festival of Power entry then you can contact Ian at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.

Official entry forms for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th April-1st May, are available to download from the Downloads page of the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk.


Havoc: The inside track.
13th March: Many thanks to Rob Loaring who has been in touch with the inside story of the Havoc Fuel Altered team's weekend at the March Meet.

Wednesday 1st March: Nick, Scott and I got into Bakersfield around 9:45 on Tuesday evening. We grabbed something to eat, found the hotel and went straight to bed. The previous Sunday, Brian Hope, Keith Dugan and 'Junior' had started the twenty two-hour tow from Rat Trap HQ in Tennessee. About the same time that we were falling into bed, our weary team-mates had parked the two trucks outside the track and were taking some well-earned rest at the same hotel. We met up at breakfast, said our Hellos and headed out to the track.


The pit set up was, to say the least, impressive. Rat Trap had travelled in a recently acquired forty foot trailer and the Bantam was tied down in the team's previous forty foot Gooseneck. Both trailers had been fitted with identical awnings and by the time they were set up we had a covered area about the size of a football pitch. For three guys from England, it was more than we could have dreamed of. The car had travelled well. There was a little organising to do but nothing too painful. Brian had equipped the trailer with a complete set of hand tools and the only stuff we had shipped from Silverstone was some specialist tools and our spares. Scott and I set about getting the car ready for Tech while Nick got things organised inside the trailer. By 6:00 that evening we were all but done. There were a few details to finish up Thursday morning but assuming that the car cleared Tech, we were set for a short run that afternoon.


That evening we all dined at Famous Dave's Barbeque, an establishment which thankfully isn't located anywhere close to where I live in England. The ribs, oh boy the ribs...

Thursday 2nd March: Thursday started bright and sunny; it was to remain this way until Sunday morning. We had finished breakfast and were headed to the track by 8:00 am. Apart from some questions regarding our International SFI chassis tag, Tech went smoothly. Our Tech Inspector made a call to Danny Gracia for clarification on expiry dates and we got the all clear at around 2:30 that afternoon. There was an open test session available from 3:00 pm and we hadn't been idle while waiting for Tech to sign us off. The car was warmed up, the clutch, ignition and idle speed set, and we were good to go.

The only potential banana skin we could see was a tyre roll-out issue. The first time we set the pressure, our new slicks measured just over an inch difference in circumference. If you're unfamiliar with this issue and can afford to waste five minutes of your life, cut out two small circles of card, one a little bigger than the other. If you then push them onto each end of a pencil and roll it forwards it'll go around in a circle. We have the same issue during a run. The rear axle is locked, and with the front end in the air any difference in tyre roll out (circumference) will cause the car to rotate either towards the left or the right. To an extent we can correct this by stretching the smaller of the two but the tyre has memory, making the job somewhat problematic. The slicks are bias-belted and the construction is basically a viscoelastic matrix of fibre cords, polymers and fillers. At the risk of oversimplifying, it's something like a plate of reinforced pasta. If over-inflated, areas in the matrix can break down and when the pressure is reduced to operating level the circumference is increased slightly. The difficult part is that, over time, the tyre continues to recover so for a while it's like hitting a moving target.

By the time we pulled out of the pit the difference was down to half an inch, the right rear being the larger of the two. Alarm bells should have rung when Nick indicated that some right hand steering was needed to keep the car rolling straight but unfortunately, we were excited and tired and missed the connection.

We were directed into lane four along with various other AA/FAs, Top Fuel Dragsters and Funny Cars. The Fuel cars would run in pairs chosen entirely at random. We had the right lane and hooked up the starter alongside Adam Sorokin's Top Fuel car. Unfortunately the Small Block had an issue during start up and the team pushed back leaving us to début on a single.


Our first impressions of the track were great, it looked smooth and well prepped. The distance from the water to the staging beams is a little shorter than at Santa Pod Raceway so the car needed to be reasonably well-centred when backing up after the burnout. At the hit we lost cylinder #4 for about two tenths but after that the engine sounded fine. About thirty feet out our roll-out problem became apparent and the car steered left. Nick rolled off the throttle to try to get the front down but no joy, the rear end steered the car toward the centre line and that was that. It went 1.06 at sixty feet which is about as fast as it goes so we had something to smile about.

Back in the pits Nick dumped the Racepak data and it all looked good. Brian and the guys had finished up the last jobs on Rat Trap and we were all set for Friday qualifying. The March Meet was underway.

Dinner that evening was at In-N-Out Burger. Stewart Bassett and Geoff Stilwell (of US Automotive and Beech Underwriting respectively) had arrived that day and we all set off, largely unwashed, at around 6:45 pm. My good friend Andy Willsheer had suggested we try a Double–Double with onions and most of our group followed his advice. With our order placed we sat down at our table and Brian suggested I try one of the side dishes. I asked what they were and Stewart Bassett indicated "Pickles". I selected one about the size of a cherry tomato and bit off just over half. It was a rookie mistake. As the seeds turned the inside of my mouth into lava the entire Rat Trap team wet their pants laughing. So much for the Transatlantic Special Relationship... I'd like to comment on the burger but with what was left of the inside of my mouth it might as well have been a tennis ball.

Friday 3rd March: Brian suggested we start Friday with breakfast at Hardee's. I've always found cultural eating habits interesting, what gets mixed with what and when so to speak. Sitting at the table drinking coffee while our American team-mates sipped 7Up and Pepsi is one such example. We looked at each other and thought "How can you drink that stuff at 7:30 in the morning?". The all-inclusive breakfast sandwich was great but it did hang around for a while, progressing at glacial speed towards my stomach and finally arriving at about 3:00 that afternoon.

Ron Hope, Kay Hudson and Brian's wife Rebecca arrived late Thursday, thus making both teams complete. We weren't scheduled to run until late that afternoon so the pace around the pit was fairly steady. We hooked up with many of our travelling supporters and took some time to soak up the atmosphere. Around midday Ron gathered us all together and made a presentation. As if we hadn't already received enough help, Lawrie Gatehouse along with Bill and the entire Sherratt family had paid for our first barrel of nitro. If things were going to get better, it was difficult to see how.

We got the call at around 4:00 pm. The warm-up had gone OK and Scott had spent some time messing with the roll-out before going to the Goodyear trailer to check the balance. The steering was better, not perfect but a lot better. We sat in the lanes for a long time, Funny Car and Top Fuel qualifying was a hard-fought affair and a few oildowns were inevitable. The sun went down around 6:30 pm and the temperature started to drop dramatically. By the time it got to 7:30 pm it was getting cold. We had no official confirmation but it appeared that if the track temperature got down to sixty degrees they'd call it a day. In conditions such as this it becomes less of a question of what the car can run and more of what the track will take.


By the time we got to the top of the line Nick and I were debating a high-gear launch just to get something on the board. It would probably cost us a clutch pack but with only two qualifiers, the first of which was in cold conditions, we had little choice. In the event, when the Bantam rolled through the water it was sixty two degrees. Nick ran it in low gear for about thirty feet then punched the button. The car fell on its face but stayed in the middle of the lane and ran a 6.57 at 223 mph, good enough for third spot. Bad news was to follow. Half way through the burnout, Rat Trap pushed #2 spark plug out of the head and the team were unable to make a run. Going into final qualifying it would be our third hit at the startline but for our team-mates it would be their first.

Back in the pits Nick dumped the data and Scotty drained the oil. On the tow-back, headlights had illuminated the smoke coming from the clutch can. At this time of day I had no interest in dealing with the remnants, it was 9:30 pm and we were exhausted. Brian and Keith set about servicing Rat Trap and repairing the damaged cylinder head. We made our excuses, loaded the car and tools into the trailer and headed for the hotel. There was a small Mexican restaurant close by and dinner was a brief and light affair. The magnitude of the weekend was telling; you can hide stress from the outside world but your body knows. We were dead on our feet.

Saturday 4th March: The event was gaining momentum. The joking and messing around we enjoyed during the first couple of days had started to give way to a more focused atmosphere. We had one shot left, our team-mates hadn't yet qualified and we were a lifetime away from safe. This change in approach accelerated somewhat when, as we arrived at the track, the announcer indicated that our 4:00 pm qualifier had been moved up to 12:30 pm. There was enough time but we had to get to work. Check the bearings, fit a new clutch pack, mix the fuel, lube the valvetrain and accommodate a few interviews. By 11:00 am we were done. Scotty kept chasing the roll-out problem and when we pulled out of the pit we were in decent shape. It was business as usual for Ron, Brian and the Rat Trap guys. It was the environment in which they lived.


We eventually ran at about 3:15 pm. The staging lanes were organised so that we could run together, Ron in the left and Nick in the right. Our run was a little better, a 6.34 at 234 mph looked a little more likely to keep us in and at close of play it was enough for fourth. Ron had his hands full in the left. Brian has been fighting one or two dropped cylinders during the early part of a run and when they light up Ron spends the rest of the run with the car's front end in the air. A 6.77 at 219 mph was good enough to qualify but by the end of the session the little Bantam was ninth. Unless someone couldn't make the first round, Rat Trap Racing would go into Sunday with one car.

Dinner that evening was at the Outback steak restaurant. I can't explain why the steaks in the US are so good; Nick suggested that maybe the cows are just "Nicer" and frankly I can't think of anything better.

Sunday 5th March: Sunday morning brought rain. The farmers celebrated and we went looking for rope. The ever-changing forecast did little to help, surely we hadn't come this far just go home with a rain-out ticket. Running the race on Monday brought unwanted complications as our flight was due to leave at 9:00 pm that evening. As luck would have it, by about 11:30 am the rain started to clear and the early afternoon found us in the staging lanes waiting for our first round. During qualifying, our fuel mix had been close to 88%, in the first round it was back up to 90%. History has taught us that if we're short on pace, there's little point in making a guess at something better. We just take our A Game to the start line and if we come up short, so be it.

Our opponent was Keith Wilson in the Witch Doctor, a car which had been deep into the five-second zone. To be honest, the race was going to be tough because we weren't fast enough. To make a fist of it, we needed to be closer to the 6.00 index. For our opponents, slowing a mid five-second car down to 6.00 wasn't exactly going to be a walk in the park either. There were no games on the start line. Nick had indicated fuel on his visor during the burnout and at the hit, it was shower head. We enjoyed a hundredth's advantage at the start but by the eighth the Witch Doctor was in another post code. Unable to see much by now, Nick rolled off the throttle and we took a first round loss on the chin.


The mood in the pit was a little subdued, but after a short while the smiles returned and we were prepping the car for its long trip back to Tennessee. It was Rat Trap team member Junior's birthday and another trip to Famous Dave's Barbeque was planned for the evening. With the race over, it was a more relaxed affair, the ribs were great but the company was better. What a weekend.

As ever our sincere thanks go to the Hope family, Lawrie Gatehouse, Geoff Stilwell at Beech Underwriting and of course, US Automotive's larger than life Stewart Bassett. To everyone who has made a donation, many thanks. You've no idea how much it helps.


On AA/FA 6.00: Class performance is somewhat defined by technical regulations. If your car runs seven flat and it's a Super Stocker, you're probably Harry Potter. If it's an Alcohol Funny Car you should probably consider another career. However, without a credible Championship and sufficient long-term funding, writing a set of technical regulations is a waste of time. In the absence of a rule book, racers will naturally build whatever takes their fancy and such is the case with the AA/Fuel Altereds. Bringing a large cross-section of cars together for a single eliminator is probably only viable if an index is in place. The 6.00 number appears to be a good fit for the type of cars most people have built. If the tracks continue to run the format, over time I'd expect application-specific AA/FA 6.00 cars to start appearing. If you're a fan of the short cars, you're probably north of fifty. Despite their enormous popularity, very few people build cars which truly mirror those that ran in the late sixties. For a 108" car with 25% engine set back, a string of 6.00s is a lot to ask. When Ron Hope runs a mid six there's not much left on the table. Over time their numbers will likely diminish so if you're a fan of cars like Pure Hell, Bradfords Fiat, Pure Heaven and Rat Trap I suggest you take every opportunity available to go and watch them. Buy a T-shirt and meet the teams. Nothing lasts forever.

Quote of the meeting from outside our pit:

Upon arriving at the top end with yet another engine smouldering in the front of his Funny Car, our hero was met by a concerned fire marshal asking if his car was on fire. His reply: "As slow as this thing's runnin', I sure ******' hope so".

Quote of the meeting from inside our pit:

After our Sunday warm-up Brian quizzed me about our idle speed. I informed him that it sounded high because, in order to save fuel, Nick turns the fuel shut-off half open. Brian replied "We've got two trailers full of nitro. Burn it. Burn it all."

School Report: Good effort, must try harder. If we'd picked up the tyre roll out issue sooner it would be a B+ but we didn't so, I give us a straight B.

Roll on Bowling Green in June.


Something for the weekend.
10th March: Luke Stevenson writes that the
Volkswagen Drag Racing Club's 2017 promotional tour begins this weekend at Ultimate Dubs at the Telford International Centre:

As ever we have a number of cars on display with seasoned favourites plus some new builds for 2017. If you love your modified VWs (Audis, Skodas, SEATs, Porsches) then UD17 is a great day out for you, it's only £10 for Saturday (evening only) or £15 for Sunday. You can find out more at www.ultimate-dubs.co.uk.

Also we are happy to announce another sponsor for the anniversary season in the form of Hangar 30.  Ben Speechley has been around the VWDRC for many years, supplying suspension components and custom fabrication to our racers. In 2016 he created Hangar 30 offering custom fabrication, roll cages and track day preparation as well as general car servicing and repairs from his workshop in Ely, Cambridgeshire. Over the winter Ben has already fitted roll cages to four new racers for VW Pro, these along with a great number of racers are leading up to a very busy and exciting season.

As always a massive thank you to our 2017 sponsors Darkside Developments, Vanology Performance Ltd, Kleanfreaks, Engine Carbon Clean, WRP Paint and Restoration, Brickfield Autos, BJ's Speedshop, Trackstuff Racing Fuels and Tyres, Starsz Hair and Beauty and of course Hangar 30 who between them have amassed over £5000 of prize fund for the VWDRC racers to fight for.

Want to be part of the fun? Head to www.vwdrc.com for more.


Webster's Battery of assistance.
10th March: Eurodragster.com sponsor Webster Race Engineering's new Pro Mod project is underway, the aim being to get out on track as soon as possible. Jon Webster writes:

We've had great interest in the project since the announcement in January. Progress on the build is good and on target. We've got some correspondence going back and forth looking for support and technical partners, with some very positive feedback.

One area of the car getting particular attention is weight. The target legal minimum weight for the turbo vehicles is 2650 lbs with driver. We're targeting a lot less so that we have the option of moving the mass around for chassis tuning. Analysis of the weight and location of all components is key to mass distribution within the car and as this is a fresh build we can appraise each item individually for its spec and potential location.

The battery is a key component on any vehicle, but also very often of considerable weight and size. With some research and several E-Mails and phone conversations we found a product that fitted our requirements. Antigravity Batteries produce a range of extremely compact Lithium-Ion batteries for large range of Vehicles in OEM standard sizes, with over two and a half times the cranking power of lead-acid versions. They are readily available in the UK and are priced very competitively.

Antigravity Batteries have become technical partners with us on the Mustang and we will be using their ATX20 unit, which has 780 Cranking Amps and 25 Ah. The unit weighs less than 5 lbs making a weight saving of more than 30 lbs over our usual choice of battery. With an overall size of 175 x 87 x 155mm, the unit reduces limitations for the location within the car.

Webster Race Engineering will be agents in the near future. Meanwhile if anyone has any interest in their product range, Antigravity Batteries are located in Essex and can be reached via their web site at www.antigravitybatteries-uk.co.uk or call 01702 301664.


No trouble at the Mills.
10th March: UK Outlaw Anglia team Cooper Bros Racing are proud to announce Mills CNC as a sponsor for the 2017 season. Mat Cooper writes:

Mills CNC is one of, if not the, fastest-growing machine tool companies in the UK. Mills are highly-regarded and -respected in the machine tool market and across all those manufacturing sectors they serve: aerospace and defence, power generation, motorsport, oil and gas, medical, automotive and general precision component manufacture, to name but a few.

If you or your company are in the market for a new state of the art CNC machine look no further than Mills CNC. If you have any questions regarding the latest Doosan CNC machines then feel free to contact us via our Facebook page, contact Mills CNC directly via www.millscnc.co.uk or via their Facebook page, or drop by our pit at any Outlaw Anglia meetings. Support the companies which support our drag racing family!


Swift snippets.
10th March: Good luck and stay safe to Sweden's Adam Flamholc who is contesting Extreme Pro Mod at this weekend's NMCA Muscle Car Mayhem at Bradenton Motorsports Park. You will be able to stay in touch with Adam's progress via the free Speed Video webcast at www.livestream.com/speedvideo/nmca-muscle-car-mayhem-2017.

On the subject of drag racing webcasts the excellent 1320 Online web site offers a detailed daily schedule of webcasts from around the planet including Eurodragster.com's own Webster Race Engineering / Nimbus Motorsport webcam (Thanks Barney - Ed). You can stay up to date with all the latest webcast offerings at www.1320online.com.

Monday's spy picture elicited a single response, to whit: "The dog is named Olive but if it's going to sit underneath a Ford it should be Oily". We are naturally honour-bound to protect the identity of the colourfully-pantalooned Super Pro ET Funny Car racer from the north of England our source.

Thanks very much to Jerry Cookson for letting us know that the official APIRA Trophy Presentation photographs are now available on Shakespeare County Raceway Facebook page.


Geoff Stilwell of British Drag Racing Hall of Fame sponsor Beech Underwriting Agencies asked us to say a big Happy 79th Birthday for today (Friday) to US Fuel legend Bob Muravez. Geoff tells us that he and Ron Hope sprung a surprise on Bob at Bakersfield (above). "Everyone in the pit area sang Happy Birthday to Bob", says Geoff. "Earlier, as a special treat, Ron put Bob in Rat Trap for a warm-up just to give him his nitro fix. Bob was wearing a replica of his original firesuit."

Robin Jackson tells us that Motor Sport magazine's prestigious Hall Of Fame contains a category for American racing personalities and that this year's twelve US nominees include a single drag racer, John Force. For more information, visit the Hall Of Fame voting page at www.motorsportmagazine.com/hall-of-fame/who-will-be-next. Scroll down through the categories and select your favourite candidates. All votes will be entered in a free prize draw for various Motor Sport goodies, including tickets to the Hall Of Fame Awards Dinner itself, which this year retail at a cool £399 apiece. The event takes place on Wednesday 7th June at the Royal Automobile Club, Woodcote Park, Surrey. Be sure to cast your votes in good time.


Web site updates.
10th March: In the latest instalment of his exclusive Racer Blog presented in association with Gearhead Garage Paul Marston brings us up to date with the construction of his twin-turbo Cortina. You can take a look by clicking here or by clicking on the Gearhead Garage Blogs link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Festival of Power entry.
8th March: Many thanks to Ian Marshall for forwarding us Version 1 of the official entry list for the Festival of Power, which takes place at Santa Pod Raceway on 14th-16th April. You can check out the entry list on our
John Woolfe Racing-sponsored Festival of Power Event Index by clicking here or by clicking on the John Woolfe Racing Event Coverage link on the left-hand side of any Eurodragster.com page.

Festival of Power entry closes on 24th March; you can download the official entry forms via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc. If you have any queries about Festival of Power entry then you can contact Ian at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.


Swift snippets.
8th March: Kathy Taylor asked us to say a big Happy special Birthday to her good friend Lesley Wright. We're very happy to do so, have a lovely day Lesley and love and hugs from us too.

STTG, ET Bike run at Big Bang.
7th March: Many thanks to
Santa Pod Racers Club Secretary Ian Marshall for letting us know that, subsequent to discussion at the recent UK Riders' and Drivers' Meeting and at the AGM of the National Association of Supertwins, Supertwin Top Gas and ET Bike will have an additional UK National Championship round at Big Bang at Santa Pod Raceway on 21st-23rd April (racing takes place on 22nd-23rd).

Supertwin Top Gas and ET Bike join 8.50 Bike and 9.50 Bike which already had a UK National Championship round at Big Bang.

The official Big Bang entry forms will be amended to suit and will be available on the SPRC web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc on or by Friday of this week, 10th March.

You can check out the amended full UK National Championships calendar in our report of the UK Riders' and Drivers' Meeting by clicking here. If you have any queries then you can contact Ian at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.


Swift snippets.
7th March: We would like to wish a big Happy 40th Birthday to our good buddy and Honorary Eurodragster.com Staff Member Spencer Tramm. Have a great day Spencer. A big Happy Birthday also to alcohol tuner Karl Harrison; you have a great day too Karl.

The Undertaker goes Cold.
6th March: UK Fuel Funny Car racer Steve Ashdown is pleased to announce sponsorship from Cold Fire Firefighting on the Undertaker FC:

Hydro Navitas Solutions is a name with which you may not be familiar, but Cold Fire Firefighting might just be. Lift the body of any Fuel Funny Car and look inside and you might just see a Cold Fire Firefighting fire suppression system staring up at you. Santa Pod Raceway have been using Cold Fire Firefighting for almost ten years and it is regarded as the very best firefighting product available. Hydro Navitas Solutions are Santa Pod's official firefighting partners, and are now in their second year as lane sponsor with the Cold Fire Firefighting lane.

Continuing their support for drag racing in 2017, Hydro Navitas Solutions are proud to announce that they will be sponsoring Steve Ashdown's exciting move into the European Nitro Funny Car series, driving the Undertaker Funny Car in 2017 with their Cold Fire Firefighting brand.

Hydro Navitas Solutions' CEO James Petter said "I got a call from Kath Taylor who was helping Steve raise funds, she asked for ten minutes of my time, there was only one reply I could give her - yes! I was presented with a very professional Undertaker portfolio which got me hooked. In fact, even though I didn't say it there and then, I knew we had to help Steve achieve his own dream of driving in this series, and with Cold Fire Firefighting it made for a great partnership.

"I must say that Dave Bryant has a great team back at the Undertaker garage, Steve has an impressive support team behind him and I wish him every success in 2017. We are glad to do our bit for this amazing sport."

Steve told Eurodragster.com that Fuel FC was where he wanted to be. "I got the opportunity to drive Top Fuel thanks to Rune and Lindsay", he said. "Then it all went a bit crazy and I ended up agreeing to do extra events. Words can't describe how that felt.

"Then the plot thickened! I was going to take a year out to concentrate on Tyler's racing but at the end of last season I was asked if I would like to drive Shockwave. I had a quick chat with the family and then a meeting was set up with Gordon Smith and and Dave Bryant to discuss plans. After a couple of hours we came to an agreement, shook hands and agreed to do the full season in the 2017 Funny Car Championship. I am looking forward to it and I will be getting in there and getting my hands dirty!

"I am really looking forward to it and I have some great sponsors on board. You have read about Cold Fire Firefighting, I am pleased to say that my original sponsors are staying with me as well as new backers: Dave at Robey Scaffolding, Adrian at The Phone Shop, and Richard Deevey has been a gem. As well as Cold Fire Firefighting my new sponsors for the season include Anthony from Aspect Contracts Ltd, Les Downey at Lucas Oil UK, Alex Bateman at Goodridge Hoses, Graham and Mark at Serck Motorsport, Michela at Champion Spark Plugs, Liam Jones TFJ Motorsport and Gary at Fast2Finish Printers.

"I would like to say a big Thank You to Kathy Taylor and Darren Prentice for their help, to Pete Walters for the design and shirts, awesome work as usual, Dave, Gordon and the entire Shockwave team for the opportunity and for making not just me but my family feel so welcome. Thanks to Keith Bartlett and the Santa Pod Raceway staff for continued support of the Nitro Funny Car series, to Dave Bateman and family for all their help through the years, to Paul Marston for all his help and advice because this really all began with the Paul Marston Drag Race Driving School, and to Tog and Eurodragster.com for their help (Thanks, you're welcome, milk and none in mine - Ed). Finally the biggest thanks go to my family for all of their support."


March Meet update IV.
6th March: The UK's Havoc Fuel Altered made a first-round exit in yesterday's eliminations at the March Meet at Bakersfield. Gary Willy writes:


It was always going to be a big challenge against Keith Wilson's Witch Doctor Fuel Altered which has run as quickly as 5.73 seconds at 249 mph. Nick Davies ran a losing 6.91/152 and not without problems as Rob Loaring indicated that there was a fuel leak at the hit (Nick's visor being the Official Receiver - Ed). The Witch Doctor streaked ahead running 6.13/189, lifting early so as to not break out of the 6.0 index.

The whole weekend was however a fantastic achievement for the Havoc team (Hear hear - Ed).


Swift snippets.
6th March: The latest spy picture to arrive at the offices of Eurodragster.com came with the words "Old Fords never die, they just get faster". If you know more, or if you would like to send your own spy picture, then drop us a line at eurodragster.com@btinternet.com.

Best wishes to the UK's Richie Webb who has made it into September's Hot Rod Drag Week with one of his wild VWs. Entry sold out in six minutes so securing an entry for the street-legal event is grounds for congratulation in itself. Richie faces six races in six days driving between tracks carrying or towing what he needs. You can find out more by clicking here.


Electric shock Hazard.
6th March: The UK's Adam Withington will be making a return to the track in the Hazard Racing Junior Dragster later this season. Dad and Super Street racer David Withington writes that Adam's car has a different power plant to that we last saw nearly four years ago:

The Briggs and Stratton 5 hp engine has been replaced with an electric motor. We think that this should be a natural progression as electric cars are becoming more common and even appear in Street Eliminator. We understand that this will be totally against the grain with the rule book as it is written around the use of a side valve engine, but things must move with the times.

We are currently testing the new motor and making adjustments before the first outing mid-season. The new motor can accelerate from 0 to its maximum RPM within 250 metres, which as you can imagine has caused a few issues such as throwing the motor windings and smoking tyres. We are currently tuning the control system to smooth out the acceleration and adding additional safety features to kill all power if anything fails. The custom control system has been designed by GFX Power Ltd in Cannock and has been created from scratch using some of the most up-to-date equipment available. Their strapline Power With Control definitely rings true, as a lot of power without control is pretty useless.

Adam says that will be a whole new challenge and that he is looking forwards to the return.


APIRA Perpetual Award winners.
5th March: The winners and runners-up in the 2016 APIRA Ultimate Power Championships, Supercharged Outlaws and National Association of Supertwins were presented with their trophies at the APIRA Dinner Dance and Trophy Presentation in Warwick last night (Saturday). The winners of APIRA's Perpetual Awards, for whom Eurodragster.com readers had the chance to vote, were also presented with their trophies.

Congratulations to the APIRA Perpetual Award winners:

APIRA Iris Page Memorial Trophy: Richard Walters (Super Pro ET sponsorship scheme)
Shakespeare County Raceway Award for Outstanding Achievement: Scott Crookston (Outlaw Anglia)
APIRA Shakespeare County Raceway Sportswoman of the Year: Caitlin Wilson (Lucas Oil Junior Dragster)
APIRA Endeavour Award: Simon Groves (Eurodragster.com)
Alan Wigmore Memorial Trophy: Tony Smith (ACU and APIRA race official)
McDonald Racing Ireland Best Newcomer Trophy: Elaine Hancock (Sportsman ET)

Thanks to all of the Eurodragster.com readers who voted.

APIRA Endeavour Award winner, our own Simon, writes: It is a real honour to win the APIRA Endeavour Award and I am sorry I couldn't be at the ceremony in person. I would like to thank all the officials at APIRA for generously giving facilities and information, often requested at very short notice. I would like to thank Tog of Eurodragster.com for giving me the opportunity to work with him on the site which has been, and continues to be, an amazing journey. Eurodragster.com's readers and sponsors should also take credit for providing us with content and backing. I would finally like to pay tribute to my wife Ros for supporting my work in drag racing. See you at the track!

The following special awards were also presented. Congratulations to:

2016 Services to APIRA and Shakespeare County Raceway: Sue Davis, Sherron Guise, Dave Massam
Long Standing Services to APIRA and Shakespeare County Raceway: Gerry and Joan Cookson


March Meet update III.
5th March: Our good buddies at Bangshift.com are webcasting this weekend's March Meet from Bakersfield. You can to tune in to the free webcast by
clicking here. Bakersfield is -8 hours on UK time and -9 hours on European time.


Congratulations to Nick Davies, Rob Loaring and the Havoc team on a new Personal Best speed of 234.49 mph in qualifying, coupled with a 6.349 which was good for fourth spot. Gary Willy writes that a new clutch pack was put in before yesterday's qualifier. Geoff Stilwell adds that Havoc has top speed so far in the Fuel Altered class.


In round one of eliminations Nick faces Keith Wilson in the Witch Doctor. Geoff writes that the car is all good and the team are ready.

Pictures courtesy and copyright Gary Willy and Tony Thacker


March Meet update II.
4th March: Our good buddies at Bangshift.com are webcasting this weekend's March Meet from Bakersfield. You can to tune in to the free webcast by
clicking here. Bakersfield is -8 hours on UK time and -9 hours on European time.


Nick Davies is currently third in Fuel Altered qualifying with a 6.57 at 223 mph in the dark. Geoff Stilwell writes that there were long delays due to a number of oildowns. "The track was getting slick and was only 68F and the air temp was down to 60F", he says. "Nick pulled a fantastic burnout and before we knew it he had run a 6.57/223. No lights at all in the shutdown area! That time currently puts Nick in third, and we have another qualifying session today.

"Ron Hope in Rat Trap had to shut the engine down as it blew a spark plug clean out of the cylinder head. But it is all repaired and ready to go today."

Gary Willy writes:

Friday it got real for the Havoc team at the forty ninth running of the legendary March Meet. Going into the first qualifier after a test launch on Thursday Nick now had the layout of the track, run off area and procedures and as always the team were calm professional and businesslike.

If it had gone to plan there would have been two qualifying sessions for Nitro Funny Car and Top Fuel slingshot and a single qualifier for the Fuel Altereds. In the first session of Funny Car, twenty eight cars lined up in the lanes and the number one qualifier was the McAttack car of Mick McIntire Jr with a record-breaking ET of 5.549. Ten Fuel slingshots joined the party.

As the day progressed with a couple of major oildowns and a car clipping the wall the schedule started to slip away. At 5:00 pm they were still just getting through the last of the 7.0 Pro class. With thirty eight plus Nitro Funny Cars and Dragsters to get down the track everyone knew it was going to be a late night.

The first Fuel Altered fired up at around 7:00 pm and we had fourteen Fuel Altereds going into the black of night for their first qualifier, the Havoc car getting to the line at around 7.30 pm and coming out sounding strong and ready for business. A good burnout and the car was then nicely backed up by Paula Clayton and brought to the line by Rob. Nick ran 6.57/223 putting the Havoc team an outstanding third qualifying position everything the Havoc team could wish for as we go into today's qualifying.


Advanced backing for Gough.
4th March: Returning UK Super Pro ET racer Simon Gough is pleased to announce AWS Racewear as a sponsor:

When I started racing a few years back I was having some issues finding a suit which not only fit me but which I actually liked. I came across a company called AWS Racewear in Ashford in Kent. I found the company excellent to deal with and they helped me out with not only with my suit but with crew shirts also. I am now on my fourth suit made by AWS and I'm still as happy with them as I was when they made my first. Nick runs a very tight ship and has the very best staff. They use the best materials to keep in line with FIA and SFI standards. They can also look after gloves, boots and helmets.

I am very pleased to say that AWS Racewear is now on our list of sponsors this year. I would like to thank Nick and all his staff for yet another great looking suit and hope to see them in the pits this year.

You can find AWS Racewear's web site at www.advanced-wear.co.uk.


March Meet update I.
3rd March: Our good buddies at Bangshift.com are webcasting this weekend's March Meet from Bakersfield. You can to tune in to the free webcast by
clicking here. Bakersfield is -8 hours on UK time and -9 hours on European time.


Nick Davies' first run in the Havoc Fuel Altered gained the team their best-ever sixty foot time of 1.05 seconds. Nick pedalled and then shut off as the car made a move to the left, clocking an 8.0-second time; Geoff Stilwell tells us that the move was due to an issue with the right slick which has been sorted.


Geoff adds that the engine checked out fine after the run and that Nick, Rob and the team are looking forward to today's qualifying.

Pictures courtesy and copyright Geoff Stilwell, Gary Willy and Dale Fackler


UK event entry update.
3rd March: Further to last Sunday's report of the UK Riders' and Drivers' Meeting Jerry Cookson writes that the official entry forms for the APIRA Springspeed Nationals, which takes place at Shakespeare County Raceway on 29th April-1st May, are now available to download from the Downloads page of the Shakespeare County Raceway web site at www.shakespearecountyraceway.co.uk. Entry forms for the APIRA Open Sport Nationals will be posted in due course.

Entry forms for all of this season's events at Santa Pod Raceway are available via the Information link of the Santa Pod Racers Club web site at www.eurodragster.com/sprc.


Tet has to sit it out.
3rd March: UK Top Fuel Dragster racer Tethys has been in touch with a response to those who have asked about his 2017 plans:

It's a somewhat expected turn of events - for me, at least - that I have fans! I thought I'd clear things up here. The simple answer is that I won't be racing this year. This is not through lack of desire, nor even the perennial lack of money which plagues racers. No, it's because at the end of last year, the universe decided to roll out the big guns and use its favourite way to ruin someone's day by giving me cancer.

In January, I had surgery to remove a tumour. The initial indications are that the operation was a success, and the prognosis is good. But dealing with it has been occupying a large amount of my time over the past few months, and something had to give. That something was racing.

I would like to hope that I'll be back in a race car again in the future, once things have settled down a bit, but for now my health is my main priority. All being well, I plan to be at the track for at least the Main Event and maybe other meetings, so do come and say hello. But I won't be driving, and will just be there as a spectator. Good luck to all those taking part this season.

Our very best wishes to Tet for a rapid and full recovery.


The Englishmen abroad.
2nd March: Geoff Stilwell of team sponsor
Beech Underwriting has been in touch from Bakersfield where Nick Davies' and Rob Loaring's Havoc Fuel Altered is getting ready to meet the public:

Nick, Rob and Scott arrived in LA safely on Tuesday evening and drove straight to Bakersfield. The aim is to run the car in free practice today: to quote Nick "We are not here to make up the numbers!"


For his own part Geoff is proud to announce that Iskenderian Race Cams have come on board to sponsor him and to help him to achieve his LSR goals in 2017. "I delivered to Brian Hope at Rat Trap Racing the new cam which Isky ground for me a couple of weeks ago", he says.


Geoff also showed us what NHRA racers get up to when they are not racing; in this case flying. Funny Car racer Tim Wilkerson made it possible for legendary US racer and British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Ambassador Bob Muravez to take a flight in this beautiful piece.

Gary Willy writes from Bakersfield that although competition will be tough with as many as twenty four Fuel Altereds in attandance the Havoc team are certainly match fit:


We caught up with the team late yesterday afternoon and all was well with a couple of small alterations needed on the car for tech inspection. Hopefully the car will be out for a shakedown pass today as the team as the team get the car dialled into the track,


The track preparation at Famoso facility is second to none thanks to the efforts of the Bowser family and track management.


Alders offer transmission dyno.
2nd March: Richard Alder of Eurodragster.com sponsor Alders Automotive tells us that the company has recently installed a transmission dyno:

We found that more of our customers were asking if the transmissions could be tested after undergoing a rebuild and with increased sales on our race transmissions we decided to import a transmission dyno from the USA. This dyno will allow us to check all of our popular American and race transmissions before delivery. We can run the transmission and check transmission pressures, shifts and cooler flow.

This has given our customers peace of mind that they can buy with confidence knowing that their transmission has been dyno-tested before delivery allowing them to focus on their race meeting. The photo shows one of our full-race Powerglide transmissions on the dyno.

You can get in touch with Alders Automotive via their web site at www.aldersautomotive.co.uk or call 01323 848448.


UK electronic rule book update.
1st March: Ian Marshall has been in touch to let us know that there has been a problem with some of the USB sticks containing the 2017 UK rule book distributed to
Santa Pod Racers Club members:

It would appear that we have a coding error and that the rule book is not present on those sticks already sent out. The remaining memory sticks are being re-tested and all of the information copied again to ensure that all of the information is present.

For those members who already have a memory stick, please note that we will be sending a locked PDF file to you via E-Mail by the end of the week. You can then save it to the memory stick if you so choose, or keep it as a separate file.

We apologise for the error but we will have it sorted out as soon as possible.

If you have any queries then you can contact Ian at SPRC on 01933 313625 (outside the UK +44 1933 313625) or E-Mail ir.marshall@btconnect.com.


FIM Europe SSB Round 1 entry open.
1st March: Alexandra Tóth has been in touch with an update on the first round of the 2017 FIM Europe Super Street Bike Cup, which this year takes place at the Car and Bike Celebrity of May event at Kunmadaras in Hungary on 29th April-1st May:

Our race series in Kunmadaras turns twenty years old this year, so we have many surprises and new features at the event. In addition, FIM Europe has approved Street Freestyle as an official European branch of motorsport, and has given the rights to Hungary to organise a one-round European Cup which will also take place at Kunmadaras.

So all in all we will have many new interesting programmes and two European Cups in Kunmadaras between 29th April and 1st May, and everybody is welcome.

The official entry form and Supplementary Regulations (PDF format) can be downloaded by clicking here. You can find out more about the event at www.kunmadarasmotorsport.hu.


Welcome Dyno Unlimited.
1st March: We are very pleased to welcome Belgian Top Methanol Funny Car racer Danny Bellio's business Dyno Unlimited as a sponsor of Eurodragster.com News.

Dyno Unlimited is located in Houthalen-Helchteren, Belgium, and can handle engines which are naturally aspirated, turbocharged, supercharged, gasoline or alcohol, carburettor, mechanical injection or EFI, from a regular street engine up to a 4000 horsepower race engine. Danny writes:

The benefit of putting your engine combination on the dyno is that you get a base tune-up in a safe manner instead of risking breaking parts on the track. Potential engine or tune-up problems can be spotted and mended before damage occurs.

We rent out the dyno unit with an operator, engine mounting, water cooling if needed, and logging sensors. The customer will need to bring their own oil, spark plugs, tools, service parts if needed, and mechanic if servicing is needed in between test pulls. The customer will also need to provide a test plan, what is expected from the dyno and how they wish to test their engine.

The dyno can be rented per hour with fee dependent on the type of engine being tested. Engines which need to be serviced between pulls require mechanics to be present although we can also provide the service, parts, and tuning aids and tips at additional cost.

What we offer is a safe base tune-up in an environment where the engine is constantly being monitored in real time and any problems can be spotted before damage is done.

If you are interested our service then please contact us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DynoUnlimited or E-Mail us directly at info@dannycars.be.

1st March is the start of Eurodragster.com's sponsorship year. We are very pleased to say that almost all of our sponsors have renewed for this season and a big Thank You to all for their continued support. Sadly we are saying goodbye and thank you to long-standing Eurodragster.com sponsor and recently-retired Top Alcohol Dragster racer Mike Manners' company Cosmo Residences, and to 2016-17 sponsor GF Innovations.

Please show your appreciation of those who support Eurodragster.com and our sport by considering our sponsors when shopping for anything from a race vehicle to parts, services or support.



Earlier news