Santa Pod Raceway
Drag Racing

The Summer Nationals 2006 Report

17th - 18th June 2006

The Santa Pod Racers Club hosted its fifth successful annual Summer Nationals event in steaming hot temperatures on Saturday that toned down to a modest mid twenties Celsius for finals day.

The MSA Top Methanol category unfortunately had only two dragsters running as preparations for the second round of the FIA event in Finland and machines awaiting spare parts made for the paucity of race cars. Rob Turner ran a solo final as opponent John Parkinson could only stage his car due to motor damage from his 7.617/173 first qualifier. Turner overcame new slicks problems and turned in a 5.620/244 ticket to take the final.

Top Methanol   Super Modified

The growing popularity of the Nostalgia Fuel Altered class produced some newly licenced drivers and a couple of stunning time tickets and a horrendous kaboom. Wendy Baker suffered a huge fiery burnout explosion that wrecked the motor, unfortunately it seems none of the assembled press pack got the image as all were the opposite side of the track. Tony Betts wheeled his colourful Ford Model T to a great 6.702/204 and Nick Davies pushed the stunning alky burning 'Havoc' Bantam to an all time best of 6.91/205 but it was Frank Bennett that came away leading the no eliminations and complex points system.

The Super Modified category was a Rob Smallworth benefit in his huge Chevy Bel Air, with a 7.741/175 as number one qualifier he went on to win over a broken Nigel Payne then took out Tim Garlick 7.718/175 to a 7.887/167 and then to face Rob Millward in the Team Ellis Olds Cutlass for the money run. Millward had managed to dispose of Steve Rawlings in round one then fight a close duel against Andy Kirk, a 7.665/176 getting the nod over the 7.711/172. The final was all over in 7.696 seconds at 177 as Smallworth powered to the win over Millwards 7.673/178.

An almost full field of Super Comp machines was led in qualifying by Pete Creswell's 8.921/151 in his Mustang but he went out to eventual finalist Tim Adam in round one. Adam pushed his Brogie Roadster through a round two bye run and trailered Paul Knight's Trans Am to enter the final. Brian Pateman made his way past Paul Letchford in the opening round then a breaking out Malcolm Francis 8.960/145 win to the offending 8.802/148, the semi saw current Champion Chris Johnson just lose with an 8.937/145 to the winning 8.936/151. Pateman then faced Adam, Firebird against Roadster. In a close deal Pateman picked up the win with an 8.933/146 to the 8.985/148.

Super Comp   Super Gas

It was Mark White's Vega that got the Super Gas pole position in the nineteen car field, a perfect 9.900/123 but went out in the second round to Tim Adam. Eventual winner Steve Dunn managed to ground the current Champion Frank Mason in the first round then another heavy hitter, Malcolm Francis in a double breakout, 9.897/143 win to the 9.891/151 before running a legal 9.922/143 to Jon Morton's breakout 9.863/144. The semi final gave Dunn an easy bye of 9.927/143. Facing Dunn for the trophy was Matt Gatland whose 9.959/132 was superior to Steve Wells leaping 10.142/126. Round two competitor Stuart Peck had problems as Gatland took the win with a 9.941/131 that netted the next round bye which was put to good use with a 9.908/143. The semi final saw Gatland face Adam and he charged him down winning on a 9.938/143 to the losing 9.918/143. Steve Dunn took the win with a legal 9.909/144 to Matt Gatland's breakout time of 9.872/141.

The Super Street class saw Mike Bentley come from number eight qualifier to head the cast at the end of the weekend he beat pole position man Bob Lees in the final decision. Lees had earlier seen off Michael Howling in one, then current Champion John Grant with an 11.037/124 lose to the 10.953/122 win before a bye to the final. Bentley on the other hand beat a breakout Nick Griffin in one then moved round Martyn Sanger in a double breakout, 10.891/142 win to the 10.833/107 lose. A holeshot 11.038/127 then beat the late leaving 10.985/116 from Simon Cooper's Pop. In the final Bob Lees big Mustang not only red lit but broke out to boot giving the crown to Mike Bentley's Ford Sierra, 10.939/127 to the disqualified 10.812/127.

Super Street   Super Pro ET

A nineteen car class of Super Pro ET was led by Rick Cooke in his Dragster on an 8.318/151 but a second round loss saw him go back on the trailer. Final round opponents were Nigel Turner and Steve Johnson the numbers ten and four qualifier respectively. Turner on his way up dealt out Mo Blackburn in the S&K Dragster in round one then Nick Spence's Dragster in two and an under index John Atkinson in three before a bye to the final. Johnson meanwhile despatched Steve Green's Cortina in one and Martyn Jones in two and current Champion Ian Tubb in three before a semi final win over Mark Flavell. A good leave by Nigel Turner's Dragster in the concluding round was hauled in by Steve Johnson's 'Motor Mouse' Dragster, 7.426/163 to the losing 8.511/155.

Gary Springford was head of the list in the massive Pro ET class on a 10.206/126 but went out to Paul Marston in round one. The final came down to a run off between the Bevedere of Kevin Slyfield and the Camaro of Clive Cox. Earlier, Cox had put paid to the likes of Ian Atkinson then Aiden Kenny in two, 10.185/132 to a red light 11.874/110. Nicky Frost ran .020 under her index with a 9.930/135 lose giving the 10.281/126 win to Cox as with the semi final an under index and red light lose of 9.901/134 from Carla Pittua put Cox in the final. Slyfield meanwhile got by Steve Bolton in one then went on to down John Morris's Probe 11.779/113 to a red light 10.185/138, next was the defeat of Antony Wilkins '55 Chevy 11.869/107 win to the chasing 11.300/116 and into the semis it was Chris Hodgkins Dragster that double disqualified itself with a red and under index 9.890/135 to the winning 11.800/113. A nice leave by Kevin Slyfield's big yellow Belvedere stayed ahead with a winning 11.810/109 as Clive Cox's 'Joyrider' Camaro charged to a 10.383/131 runner up.

Pro ET   Sportsman ET

The Sportsman ET class was led by Anna Metcalfe's neat yellow Mustang with a 13.776/102. Metcalfe lasted until the semis when she went out to Martin Lewis. Lewis in his diminutive 1600cc Vauxhall Nova came from number two and paved his way to the final by way of wins over Ian Petrie in round one then a bye to meet Metcalfe where a 15.596/83 stayed ahead of Metcalfe's 13.658/96 charge. Geoff Cowley's Camaro came from number five in qualifying to win over a broken David Nelson in one then a 15.764/84 beat the 15.705/70 from Nick Gay before an easy bye to the final. Geoff Cowley managed a good light and pushed his machine to a 15.807/84 win leaving Martin Lewis to runner up with a 16.039/84.

A 0.004 coupled with an 8.430/77 gave Peter Walters the pole position at the end of Saturday in Junior Dragster, his luck lasted until he was defeated in round two by Scott Hauser. The final was made up of male and female as Hauser made his way past Daniel Giles in round one then Walters in two as two red lights showed, the least in favour of Hauser and onto a bye in round three before a 7.947/78 win over Amelia Bond's 8.916/70. It was the Dragster of Anna Stanley that made its way up the other side of the ladder with wins over the 9.945/63 from Tom Watts with an 8.300/61, then, a 9.116/69 win to the 8.017/80 from Nicholas Mugridge, a 9.103/69 beat Jayne Kay's 7.981/81 before her semi final bye run. It was all over on the startline as the current Champion Scott Hauser left too early in a catch up red light try of 7.926/82 allowing Anna Stanley to scoop the title with a 9.082/69 win.

Junior   Street Eliminator

The Street Eliminator street legal cars put on their usual great show of raw power and it was led by Steve Nash in the 'Wild Cat' Cougar with an 8.177/174. It was obviously his weekend as he ended up taking the trophy. In round one Nash took an 'easy' 8.472/173 past Matthew Wright's Sierra before powering by Alex McIntosh and his Mustang 8.231/175 win to a 9.459/143 lose. A semi final bye of 8.152/175 pumped Nash up for the final. Ian Hook managed to put his '34 Ford into the second place in qualifying then take out Ron Haslett's Cortina Estate in one. Round two up against Alan Simms' Vauxhall Cresta, Hook pushed to an 8.477/164 win downing the 9.323/149 try then managing an 8.590/163 to oust the slowing 11.092/125 from John Walden. A better leave by Ian Hook really stood no chance against the wheels up on each change charge from Steve Nash, the Cougar just zooming past with an 8.084/176 to the 8.393/166.

VW Pro win went to Glynn Morgan in a four car battle he took top qualifier with a 13.007/100, then got past Martin Charles and went on to face Joe Gallagher who had beaten a broken Tim Bell. The final was taken in a 12.892/97 win to a 12.466/108 duel in favour of Glynn Morgan's Beetle over Joe Gallagher's Karman Ghia.

VW Pro   VW Sportsman

Paul Cox pushed his VW Buggy to a 14.618/85 to take top qualifier in VW Sportsman but failed to get past round three. The final of the nineteen car eliminator was taken by Graham Fairhead as both he and competitor Richard Merriman both went under index the 15.296/80 beat the 16.557/80.

VW Alternate Engine brought together five contestants with Mat Finney taking his powerful camper van to a 15.422/86 pole placing, and it was Finney who ended the day as class winner when his 15.471/83 beat the 14.471/83 from Mark Skeen's VW van.

VW Alternate Engine   Wild Bunch

Girl power won the day in the Wild Bunch category as Sarah Howells came from number four qualifier to beat number three qualifier Helen Smythe in an all girl all '23T altered bash. Howells better leave coupled with a 9.738140 beat Smythe's 9.639/137 try.

Top Fuel Bike without Steve Woollatt who suffered big and fiery motor problem at the Main Event has left a huge gap and Steve Carey made sure he was taking advantage as a 7.236/180 got him top qualifier spot. The final came down to a run off between Carey and Ian Turboville who has stepped up having found and cured his drifting problem (the exhausts were blowing him sideways on the run). In an almost equal leave the two powered away but it was Steve Carey who won the contest in 7.299 seconds at 185mph as Ian Turboville came in second with an ever improving 8.484/168.

Top Fuel Bike   Funny Bike

Neil Midgley topped the Funny Bike pile with a 7.067/189 in the heat of the day on Saturday keeping just ahead from the rest of the eight bike field, that was until Sunday's first round when he suffered problems and seeing the win go to Tim Blakemore. It was Blakemore that then had the upper hand with wins over Stu Chamberlain 8.850/101 to a problem laden 18.331/36 to enter the final. Shaun Branch meantime was getting the better of Ken Cooper in round one then a good bout with Dave Bailey, 7.392/178 win to the 7.579/177 lose. In the final Tim Blakemore had to pull out all the stops as Shaun Branch left first and ran a 7.345/180 but was powered past near the lights with a stunning 6.888/179 win by Blakemore.

Paul Watson pushed his Suzuki Hayabusa to score a 7.604/172 to claim top qualifier in Pro Stock Bike and never looked back. The small but tough field gave Watson a 7.692/173 win over Ray Debben's 8.159/162 to end up facing Len Paget in the run off for top honours. Paget had earlier got around Richard Gipp with a 7.925/147 win to the 8.004/161 try. Len Paget knew his chances were brief and unfortunately left on a red scaring Paul Watson in doing likewise but Paget's 8.145/134 with a minus .172 came second as the least red light went in favour of Paul Watson's minus .047 with a 7.596/174 to win.

Pro Stock Bike   Competition Bike

The Competition Bike win went to Kevin Charman as his top qualifier added to his weekend honours. A 7.987/161 put him in the final against Phil Leamon who had dealt out Sandra Chaplain in an 8.470/153 win to a 9.045/139 lose. Once again it was won on the startline as Phil Leamon red lit away an 8.397/155 as Kevin Charman powered past to record a win of 7.844/162.

Perhaps the heat on Saturday's qualifying hurt the performance of these two wheel Super Street Bike rockets as no sevens were recorded in qualifying. It was left to Graham Dance to record the top spot with an 8.090/178 then go on to wrap up the whole class on finals day. Dance went through the day like a dose of salts, an easy 8.014/178 first round bye, an 8.152/177 over a broken Dave Smith in two then his first seven of the event, a 7.911/177 against the usual might of Jamie Sneddon who slowed to an 8.881/145. Climbing the other side of the tree was Steve Venables on the only Kawasaki in the field, he went by Mick Payne in one put down a 7.814/183 bye in two out classed Ivan Birch's 9.667/164 with a zooming 7.777/187 to face Dance in the final. Steve Venables seemingly went off pace a little in the money run getting a better light but running an 8.006/184 only to see Graham Dance power by to win with a 7.907/179.

Super Street Bike   9.50 Bike

The twenty strong 9.50 Bike class put on a class act and took advantage of the absence of Fred Furlong. Phil Pratt led proceedings with a 9.563/138 but went out to Richard Sawatzki in round two. The final came down to a run off between Sawatzki and Andy Bird but it was Richard Sawatzki on his 1300cc Suzuki Hayabusa that got to the winners circle as Bird went under index by -.030, a 9.470/132 came second to the legal 9.622/141.

The Supertwin Top Fuel Bike had a surprise winner in the form of John Hackney on his normally Supertwin Modified 996cc Suzuki. The class suffered a multitude of woes in the form of breakages that left Hackney an unopposed run through to take the win with a 9.981/138 final round.

Supertwin Top Fuel   Supertwin Top Gas

John Floyd led the Supertwin Top Gas Bike class then ended up with the trophy as he got to the final unopposed to face Jerry Collier who had earlier despatched the likes of a broken Chris Mott then Chris Stebbings in a 9.632/132 to a 9.973/132 clash. The1000cc machine of Jerry Collier left first and ran a 9.587/133 but was chased down by the 500cc Yamaha RD of John Floyd whose 9.044/142 took the win.

In the Supertwin Street Bike round Dave Jones pushed his 1320cc Harley-Davidson V-Rod to the overall glory by being top qualifier with a 10.391/131 then going on to beat Bev Riley in round one 10.506/129 to a 14.135/72 to compete against Steve Folds in the final. Folds had seen off the 11.332/117 try from Neil Dickson with a 10.621/127 win. Despite a better leave Steve Folds 1000cc Suzuki could not hang on to the lead recording a 10.680/127 to the winning 10.365/128 from Dave Jones.

Supertwin Street  

Report by Roger Gorringe. Copyright June 2006.

All Photos Copyright Roger Gorringe. NITRO exposure.

Summer Nationals Menu:

Summer Nationals 2016: Preview
Summer Nationals 2015: Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2014: Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2013: Gallery / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2012: Gallery & Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2011: Gallery & Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2010: Gallery & Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2009: Gallery & Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2008: Gallery & Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2007: Report / Photo Entry List
Summer Nationals 2006: Report
Summer Nationals 2005: Report

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