|FIA/UEM European Finals 2007
Thursday 6th - Sunday 9th September
FIA European Drag Racing Championships Inc UEM Drag Bike
2007 Event Report
The European Drag Racing Championship season is now over! After a damp start at the Main Event back in May, we are glad to report that the season Finale was a stunning four days of uninterrupted action, with personal bests, European records and no-holds-barred action all round.
The site was packed with a record number of over 31,00 spectators and racers, and things to do and see were not just confined to the track, with air displays, monster trucks, stunt shows, loads of trade stalls and acres of pits packed with gleaming race cars and bikes to be inspected at close-quarters.
We hope you had a great time at the event and will be back at Santa Pod Raceway soon. A full and exclusive race report provided by Roger Gorringe is further down this page. Make sure you have a look around our photo galleries, where we’ve managed to freeze-frame 300mph drag racing at its most spectacular.
European Finals, Finals Results
2007 European FIA & UEM Champions
FIA Top Fuel Dragster: Urs Erbacher
FIA Top Methanol Dragster: Dave Wilson
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car: Freddy Fagerström
FIA Pro Modified: Micke Gullquist
FIA Pro Stock: Jimmy Ålund
FIM/UEM Top Fuel Bike: Ian King
FIM/UEM Supertwin: Lorenz Stäuble
FIM/UEM Pro Stock Bike: Tom Tinndahn
View the full season standings tables on the Championship Standings 2007 page.
||Photo Entry List
For photos of all the drivers and riders that will be competing at The European Finals 2007 view the Photo Entry List.
The winner of the European Finals Questionnaire prize draw for £1000 is Alan Hughes from Staffordshire.
The FIA European Finals - 2007 Race Report
Records tumbled all weekend as racers vied for positions in the European Drag Racing Championships. Top Fuel new ET record of 4.703 was set by England’s Andy Carter in the Lucas Oil dragster, Pro Stock ET went down to 6.781 courtesy of Finland’s Eero Knihtilä and Sweden’s Micke Lindahl recorded the 6.110 ET record in Pro Modified. Flags from all over Europe and Scandinavia fluttered above the tens of thousands of race fans and hundreds of different pit bays as the weather stayed mainly cool and overcast with sunny spells but all importantly – dry, providing the machines with good air. FIA Champions were Switzerland’s Urs Erbacher in Top Fuel, Britain’s Dave Wilson wrapped up his fifth straight Top Methanol Dragster title, Sweden’s Freddy Fagerström took Top Methanol Funny Car in his rookie year, Swede Jimmy Ålund took his fourth straight Pro Stock championship and fellow countryman Micke Gullqvist wrestled the Pro Mod championship away from a tight knit pack. FIM/UEM Super Twin Championship went to Switzerland’s Lorenz Stäuble, Top Fuel Bike to Britain’s Ian King and Pro Stock Bike to Denmark’s Tom Tinndahn.
FIA Top Fuel.
Britain’s Andy Carter showed his intentions right from the word go with a stunning and FIA European record setting 4.703 slowing to just 270mph, this figure held until the final qualifier when he upped the numbers to a great 4.645 at just 296mph, this led the nine strong field by over one tenth of a second. Sitting on the bubble was Denmark’s Stig Neergaard with a 5.5039/224 and Finnish ski-jumping champion Janne Ahonen sat outside with a 5.565/197.
Round one opened with a wheelie from Sweden’s Jöran Persåker that had him lift off the throttle to record a losing 5.245/254 as Finn Tommi Haapanen charged away to win with a 4.891/302. Swiss giant Urs Erbacher made short work of his win as Sweden’s Micke Kågered hurt the motor just off the line and scored no times to the 4.941/274 win. Norway’s Thomas Nataas was on a roll throughout qualifying running 4.7’s to end up third then dispatching point leader, Holland’s Lex Joon in the opening round 4.847/304 to the losing 4.897/312, won on a holeshot. Andy Carter’s luck went away in round one courtesy of a thrown belt and he coasted to a 7.362/106 as in the other lane Stig Neergaard got crossed up on the launch, recovered the machine then pedalled his way past Carter winning with an entertaining 7.093/180 much to his opponents disgust to end the round.
Tommi Haapanen’s luck disappeared in the second thrash when he could not fire the car due to a faulty starter motor allowing a jubilant Stig Neergaard to just launch and coast to the win with an easy 13.265/61. The following pair produced a pedalling contest as the both hit tyre smoke at half with Urs Erbacher slipping past to record the win with a 5.645/233 as Thomas Nataas fire-balled the motor slowing to a 5.923/163 lose.
The team from Denmark could not believe their luck in obtaining a final round place after being virtually written off in the beginning but Stig Neergaard in his Tribune-Udlejning.dk machine gave it his all against Urs Erbacher but it was Erbacher’s lead in the Midland Oil/SCS IT/Techno AG car that scored the win and the FIA Top Fuel European Championship with a 4.817/291 as Neergaard ticketed his best ever with a fiery 4.879/308 to become event runner up.
FIA Top Methanol Dragster.
Britain’s Rob Turner pushed his machine to lead qualifying in the first two rounds with a fine 5.534/255 but then Dave Wilson continued his rapacious dominance with a 5.456/258 to head the seven car eliminator leaving Krister Johansson on the bubble with a 6.162/244.
Wilson opened the round with a 5.459/258 bye run just to show he was not to be trifled with. Norway’s Paul Ingar Udtian was making improvements all weekend in Wilson’s old car but suffered a pernicious pop at three quarter track that allowed German Timo Habermann to pass him with a winning 5.743/245 to the slowing 7.377/107 lose. Fuel woes once again hit Krister Johansson’s injected nitro try slowing him to a 6.392/234 as Rob Turner caught and passed taking the win with a 5.486/255. Last pair in the round had class rookie Derek Flynn red light away any chance against German Peter Schöfer’s 5.621/253.
Another big cherry on the tree indicated a disappointment for Timo Habermann, his 5.802/244 wasted as Dave Wilson powered to a 5.525/243 win. The red came on again as unusually Peter Schöfer carded the disqualified 5.612/254 numbers as Rob Turner rode out tyre-shake but still managed a great 5.488/254 win to end the semis.
Normally the final puts Britain versus Germany but here it was an all English battle as Dave Wilson in the Silverline Tools/ PlayStation 3 car faced Rob Turner’s mount for the money run. Wilson left first on a 0.145 light to the 0.196 and held on to take the event win and the FIA Championship with a 5.492/257 to the closely following 5.485/254.
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car.
Pole position changed three times during the four qualifying sessions, it was initially led by Freddy Fagerstöm (5.853/247) then Ulf Leanders (5.811/244) again Fagerström with a personal best of 5.727/247 but ended up with Leif Andréasson with a 5.713/245 that led the eight car class with Stephanie Milam on the bump spot with a 6.379/220.
The opening round saw Sweden’s Ulf Leanders the defending champion take an easy win in 6.063/233 as opponent Finland’s Jarmo Kuutniemi had problems and slowed to an 11.842/75. The Belgium hopes were dashed when Danny Bellio red lit away his luck and having seen his mistake slowed to an 11.0302/80 as Freddy Fagerström won with a 5.902/248. A tardy leave by Sweden’s Kjell Sjoblom coupled with a 6.039/233 lost him a next round placing as Denmark’s Dan Larsen powered through to a 5.997/236 win. Steph Milam could not repair engine damage after her qualifying trip into the end of track field on Saturday allowing Leif Andréasson to record a 5.941/197 win despite popping the body panel off at three quarter track.
A great holeshot by Ulf Leanders coupled to a 5.965/241 got him the win as Leif Andréasson failed to catch up, both cars seeming to slow a little at the top end, as the latter lost with a 6.038/233. Freddy Fagerström notched up his first FIA title in this round that had the crew jumping despite him losing the race with a 5.829/249 to Dan Larsen’s holeshot win of 5.819/246.
A Swedish Denmark bout gave the crowd the final as Ulf Leanders IronCAD backed Firebird faced Dan Larsen’s Boxter Dodge Avenger, Leanders suffered shake turning right then left before he backed off to a losing 7.075/147 that saw Dan Larsen take the event trophy.
FIA Pro Stock.
Qualifying saw Sweden’s Jimmy Ålund lead the nine car field with a fine 6.809/200 before in the final outing when it was bettered by Finland’s Eero Knihtilä with a 6.806/203. Jan Palmqvist sat on the bump with a 6.967/198 making it the second only time after the Swedish round at Mantorp Park in July that there was an all six second pack.
Round one opened with Magnus Hansson getting away first but coming close to the wall before losing with a 6.908/199 as a triumphant Jonas Dantanus in his first year in the class ran the winning 6.878/200, his third only 6.8 and first 200mph. Jimmy Ålund lifted the wheels for quite some way before coming to ground to record a winning 6.832/200 to down the slowed 7.028/199 from Michael Callin. Kenneth Söderström got away first against Michael Malmgren but was reeled in with a great 6.807/202 to the ailing and slowing 7.247/167. Jan Palmqvist and Finland’s Eero Knihtilä commenced a long burn-down on the tree then Palmqvist left first but suffered tyre shake slowing him to a blurred vision 18.542/42 as Knihtilä turned in the first ever European 6.7 with the winning 6.792/202.
The second round saw the European ET record set at 6.781 at 202mph as Eero Knihtilä carded the win against the 6.921/194 from Jonas Dantanus. The other pairing had Jimmy Ålund get closer to another championship when he took full advantage of the holeshot against Michael Malmgren. Ålund ran the winning numbers a 6.869/199 bettered the 6.818/202 to end the record setting round.
In the final Knihtilä failed to come up with another 6.7 and paid the price as his 6.841/201 was ably beaten by the holeshot from the now FIA Champion Jimmy Ålund with his winning 6.867/199 in the Klintberg & Way Partners Pontiac GTO.
FIA Pro Modified.
The massively popular Pro Mods fielded a twenty car qualifier for the sixteen competition places and was initially led by Sweden’s Mats Eriksson (6.262/227) then England’s Andy Robinson took over (6.239/227) before Sweden’s Micke Lindahl pulled one out of the hat to completely dominate the class with a 6.175/229 which in the last qualifier he bettered to record a European ET record of 6.110 at 223mph.
A number of top names went out in round one that included Marc Meihuizen to Patrik Wikström, Gordon Appleton to Mats Eriksson, the ’06 Champion Urban Johansson to Norbert Kuno and Roger Johansson to Micke Gullqvist.
Into round two and that opened with a stunningly close confrontation as a late entered Patrick Wikström kept his holeshot in working order and ran the 6.338/223 winner over the 6.355/222 from fellow Swede Mats Eriksson. Britain’s Andy Robinson took another pace toward the championship with a 6.238/220 as German Norbert Kuno shook and got a little crossed up slowing to a 10.160/111. Switzerland’s Bruno Bader has upped his performance nicely this season but it disappeared against Sweden’s Micke Lindahl a 6.121/222 took Lindahl to the win as Bader shook and slowed to a 7.226/213, the Lindahl numbers backing up yesterday’s 6.11 for the European ET record. Sweden’s Micke Gullqvist strapped a great leave on Dutchman Robert Joosten then carded a fine 6.233/225 to the shaking 7.504/213 try.
The semis will hold nightmares for Andy Robinson as he struggled to get reverse after the burnout finally shutting off with clutch problems and waving goodbye to his championship hopes as Micke Gullqvist soloed to the win and the FIA Championship with a great 6.187/225. The other pairing had Micke Lindahl shake but he could not recover in time to catch a rapidly disappearing Patrik Wikström as he charged to the win with a 6.573/216 to the 6.722/218 lose.
The final pitted two Swedes Micke Gullqvist the new champion in his NordicLAN Chevy Bel Air against the ‘Thriller’ Camaro of Patrik Wikström. Gullqvist left on a 0.090 light but on reaching half track succumbed to a puff of engine smoke that left the way open for Wikström who netted a 6.386/222 win to the slowed up and losing 7.070/144.
FIM/UEM Super Twin Bike.
Germany’s Guther Sohn led the eight bike class from the outset with a 6.622/201 that left a gap of over four tenths between him and next man down Switzerland’s Lorenz Stäuble with a 6.657/210 and on the bump spot sat Britain’s Ian Turboville with a 7.757/180.
Round one saw Gunther Sohn trounce Ian Turboville despite Turboville’s much better leave, a 6.602/198 was the winner to the 7.862/160 try. Finland’s Petri Kalttonen suffered damage and failed to show allowing Norway’s Hans Olav Olstad a solo 6.677 at a possibly spurious speed of 238mph. Lorenz Stäuble crossed the centre line in the lights but still took the win with a 6.627/207 as German Joachim Riemer red lit to a 10.006/79 lose. Holland’s Roel Koedam took the better light and took the win with a 6.673/208 as Sweden’s Per Bengtsson lost with a 6.955/202.
Round two and Gunther Sohn was out first and held on to take the win with a 6.548/207 to the lose of 6.731/209 from Hans Olav Olstad. In a stunningly close encounter Lorenz Stäuble managed to hold onto a slight lead and capture not only the win but the FIM/UEM Championship title with a 6.659/211 when he defeated Roel Koedam’s 6.657/207 try.
A great pair of leaves had Lorenz Stäuble in front all the way on his Rick’s Motorcycles backed 2600cc Harley and he took the event win to add icing to his Championship cake with a 6.606/208 as Gunther Sohn clicked off at about five hundred feet out as he came close to the guard-wall.
FIM/UEM Top Fuel Bike.
The mix of Top Fuel Bike and Funny Bike gave for a good combination of power but it was the fuellers that triumphed over the others. Qualifying was led by Britain’s Steve Woollatt with a 6.370/217 but was put into second spot by Frenchman Eric Tebout with a 6.208/229 ride later.
The opening round had Eric Teboul suffer an oil fire at the top end that oiled the track but his 7.137/179 beat Steve French’s 7.357/177 try. In a really close race the Italian Luigi Ferretti managed to hold on for the win light when his 6.544/206 just beat the 6.599/206 from Sweden’s defending champion Rikard Gustafsson. Steve Woollatt came off the power with problems slowing him to a losing 8.757/127 and allowing a crossed up launch by Neil Midgley’s Funny Bike to recover a win with an 8.705/162. Steve Carey was on and off the throttle in a battle of the Brits when Ian King took the win light with a belt losing 7.627/122 to the losing 9.086/87 to end round one.
Teboul could not repair and no showed allowing a relieved Luigi Ferretti to take an easy 10.670/100 to enter the final. It was not quite so easy for Ian King and his bout with Neil Midgley. Midgley left first and zoomed to a 6.819/192 only to have King fly past in the closing stages to win with a 6.614/177.
The best was saved till last when the final would sort out the FIM/UEM Champion and it pitted Ian King against Luigi Ferretti with King getting a good light and running on his old form to get a 6.444/191 win as Ferretti tried in vain with a 6.615/198 lose giving King the Championship.
FIM/UEM Pro Stock Bike.
Denmark’s Tom Tinndahn riding his Buell ruled the roost in the fourteen bike class his 7.172/174 was almost a tenth and a half in front of his nearest rival and defending champion Anders Abrahamsson’s 7.315/182.
Tom Tindahn was taking no prisoners as he relentlessly worked his way through the eliminations, his first victim happened to be Finland’s Fredrik Fredlund, a 7.221/182 soundly beat the 7.599/169 to open round one. Sweden’s Örjan Gustavsson managed a 7.690/156 win as fellow countryman Anders Larsson had death smoke from half track. Anders Abrahamsson had to play catch up to England’s Len Paget’s leave but Paget got close to the centre line and Abrahamsson powered past to record a 7.295/181 win to the 7.697/173 lose. Another holeshot for Britain’s Martin Bishop saw him record a winning 7.656/172 to beat the better but losing 7.486/175 from Sweden’s Anders Jakobsson.
Örjan Gustavsson did not show for his round with Tom Tinndahn giving him an ‘easy’ 7.176/182 route to the final. Former champion Anders Abrahamsson broke just off the line allowing Martin Bishop to secure the win with a 7.584/172 to enter the final round.
It was really no contest as Tom Tinndahn on his MCParts backed Buell led the way from the outset and with the 7.197/175 beat the 7.604/172 try from Martin Bishop and gaining the FIM/UEM Championship for Denmark.
Good to see the Fuel Coupes out again especially with Gary Page slotted back into a seat. John Spuffard managed to head the small field in qualifying with a 5.139/285 in Bob Jarrett’s ‘ATI Showtime’ Mustang, the ET becoming the UK Funny Car record.
Round one had Spuffard run a solo bye 5.168/274 then Gary Page had to pedal his Pennzoil backed Firebird to a 5.872/191 only to have Sweden’s Leif Helander catch and pass him with a 5.494/278 win.
If Leif Helander’s threatened retirement needs a capping moment this was it as his ‘Starkotter’ Saab went out on a high as he took the event win from behind with a 5.466/256 as Spuffard’s mount suffered smoke at half track, hitting the timing blocks and slowing to a losing 5.950/173.
The Sportsman qualifying on Thursday had the best of the weekends sunshine and with an unbelievable two minutes only of down-time during the whole day it packed in a massive seven sessions giving everyone ample opportunity to improve or test or just plain have fun. There were close fields in lots of the categories and the professionalism here shone through generating a worthy companionship to the FIA professional classes.
The worlds fastest Cosworth powered race car, the 2000cc Ford Probe of John Tebenham led the small class of six competitors with a 7.746/171 and sitting in the last place was Russ Fellows in his three-litre VW Beetle that was only just completed on the opening Thursday then he became the first person in the UK to run and back up the 9.996/133 in his street driven VW machine.
Round one dealt out Spencer Tramm to John Tebenham, Jason Weir to Andy Frost and Russ Fellows to German Dennis Habermann. Round two became two solos as Tebenham got the round bye then Habermann broke allowing Frost to advance to the final.
It all ended in red for John Tebenham in his Castrol Ford Probe as he carded a minus 0.166 red light and having seen it slowed to a 10.489/87 lose as Andy Frost held his nerve and ran an ‘easy’ 8.076/180 winner in his normally seven second street driven Vauxhall.
With twenty competitors it produced a great and tight field led by Dave Catton in the PMR Chevy Monza with an 8.9012/133 but his luck went away in round one going out to Shaun Lathan.
Going into round four where Paul Knight gained the round bye, completing it in 8.944/148. The other pairing pitted Jon Morton’s Camaro against Martin Curbishley’s Brogie Roadster, Morton got a little over zealous producing a red light negating his 8.912/149 and giving the win to Curbishley’s leaping Roadster.
The final and Martin Curbishley managed to keep the front wheels a little closer to the track then took the event win with an 8.945/153 to the 8.926/154 lose from Paul Knight’s Trans Am.
Peter Creswell led the large contingent of 9.9 runners in his Mustang with a near perfect 9.9001/140 but lost in round one to Steve Dunn.
The semi finals had Mike Bentley’s Ford Sierra take the win on a bye, a non-counted break-out 9.872/144. The other pair saw a battle of Stuarts as Stuart Morrice came up against Stuart Doignie. Morrice broke out with a losing 9.872/145 giving the win to Doignie’s 9.914/148.
The final produced another breakout, this time against Mike Bentley his 9.890/143 handing the trophy to Stuart Doignie’s 496 cubic inch powered BMW with a 9.921/148.
Mark Watkins led the fourteen-strong pack in his blown Datsun 280 with a 10.903/122 but fell in round one to Chris Kenny.
Into the semis where Chris Kenny managed to get the least breakout with his 10.876/120 to the losing, worst breakout time of 10.860/126 from Neil Grant’s Ford Zephyr. Another pair of breakout offenders were current Champion Bob Lees and Nick Griffin and it was Griffin’s worst of 10.825/100 that lost giving the 10.869/125 from Lees the win.
Bob Lees managed to keep it legal in the final, his big blue Mustang gaining a 10.958/132 event win as Chris Kenny’s black Pop backed off to a losing 11.054/118.
Super Pro ET.
This well subscribed class saw some epic battles that were led in qualifying by Barry Giles with a 7.600/173 in his dragster his luck lasted until he went out in round four to Spencer Tramm.
It was in the semis that Barry Giles fortunes came to an end with a red light time of 7.700/168 handing the win to Spencer Tramm who ran an 8.786/151 in his doorslammer. The other side of the ladder pitted Ashley Bell in his Cobra against Steve Johnson in his ’Motor Mouse’ dragster and it was the dragster that got the win with a 7.360/159 to the losing slowing 10.535/103.
Spencer Tramm notched up the event win when his VW Corrado ran an 8.779/151 clocking as the dragster of Steve Johnson got too anxious and pulled a red light disqualifying his 7.338/167 time.
A massive entry in this popular mixed class of altereds, doorslammers and dragsters saw it led by Carl Burton in his 4.3 litre Rover powered Ford Sierra with an 11.221/118 and he managed to get through round one but fell victim to Brian Huxley in round two of the thirty-two car eliminator.
The semi finals had three Ford Capri’s in it with Paul Baynton’s more stock looking one winning the bout against the neat skirted type of Neil Hunter an 11.038/121 beat the red light try of 10.185/135 in the first pairing. Charlie Chivers yellow taxi version then got the better of Brian Huxley’s Mustang a 10.768/125 beat the 10.687/118.
A double Capri final had Paul Baynton red light away his chances, his 11.101/121 counting for second as Charlie Chivers pushed his mount to a winning 11.080/110 victory.
Another packed class this one led by Teresa Letchford and her Camaro with a 13.081/108 heading the twenty-one car field, Teresa held on until going out to Hans van der Spek in round three.
Starting at round four where Jacob Bailey got an automatic win on his bye round with a 13.425/92 in his VW Beetle. Paul Herbert’s chopped Beetle though did not have as much luck went he was beaten by Holland’s Hans van der Spek in his Trans Am, 12.375/104 win to the 13.944/94 lose.
The final looked a David and Goliath contest as the diminutive VW faced the big Dutch owned Trans Am, a blatant red light shone in Jacob Bailey’s lane as his 13.056/104 was beaten by Hans van der Spek’s legal 12.701/103.
It’s always good to witness these young and possibly future stars conduct themselves in the heat of competition, most with a professional head on their young shoulders and audibly egged on by their multitude of friends. Qualifying was led by Anna Stanley a 0.0011 RT coupled with a 9.166/70 headed the seventeen strong cast.
Anna Stanley took the semi final round bye win with a 9.197/70 despite a red light. In the other pairing Rosie Hunt succumbed to the red bulb against Nick Mugridge who carded the win with an 8.009/80 to the disqualified 10.825/58 try.
Anna Stanley could not quite make two wins in a row after her Shakespeare County Raceway title a couple of weeks earlier, she lost with a 9.194/70 as event winner Nick Mugridge caught and passed her in the final with an 8.042/77 win.
Race Report © Roger Gorringe, www.nitroexposure.co.uk. 2007.
Further coverage of the 2007 European Finals can be found at Eurodragster.com.
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