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Mopar Nats

Fireforce 1 with Tony Baker
Laurent Arnoud with his 70 Challenger

For me this was the first time at this event, last year I couldn't make it but with all that I had heard I decided this year I wouldn't miss out. What you may ask is a Mopar, well to the uninitiated it's an American muscle car, to the more educated it's a collection of cars from the Chrysler Corporation including Chrysler, Dodge, Plymouth and Imperial commonly accepted between the period of 1962 1972.  Mopar is an abbreviation for the Chrysler Corporations 'Motor Parts' Division.

With a very strong French Contingent it was no surprise to see last years winner Laurent Arnaud here again in his beautiful '70 Dodge Challenger, having again drove all the way from France.  With a lot of pride at stake Laurent thundered to a new track record of 9.56s @ 140mph, proving that for the third consecutive year, he has the quickest Mopar Pro Street car in Europe.

The Kings of Street was dominated by Dave Billadeau running some spectacular 11 second passes in his Plymouth GTX.  Dave who won the Super Street Car class in super Series 1, proving that its all good fun, even managed to pick up the demo bracket award.Dave Billedeau

Award winners included John Pitt's '70 Cuda (Best of Show)

Jem Warner's '69 Charger R/T (Chrysler Cup), Henri Halamaji (Winged Warriors Award), Chris Orthodoxou/Executive Relief Band (Special Award).

Tasty Rod

10 Tons @63mph = 23s

Unexpectedly we also had a 10 ton truck roar up the track, and what a head turner that was.  Its amazing when something like this happens and Andy one of the FAST marshals was no exception getting sweaty palms and gasping for air when he seen this monster appear on the fire up lane.  The truck owned by Ian Mumberson is a 1979 Freightliner Truck and does a in 23s @ 61mph, the truck is in daily use and can presently be seen on the latest Nescafe commercial with Chris Eubank at the wheel.

Froome Does The Timewarp

24 years ago Tony Froome was making waves in the British Top fuel championship, and at the Mopar Nats he was making new waves. Tony has recently purchased John Menetrier's Injected 7 litre Altered Chevrolet Model T, and managed to run an impressive if some what sideways  9.36s qualifying him as the quickest Wild Bunch driver of the weekend.  John was on hand all weekend giving Tony expert guidance and advice gently coaxing him back into the wonderful world of drag racing.

Tony Froome in Sundance III

Snow White Falls For The Armco

Roger Butterworth

Its good to report that Roger Butterworth was OK after his 130mph top end spill.  His car a '57 Chevy named 'Snow White and the Seven Naughty School Girls' didn't get off so lightly, with a lot of fibreglass, panel and trim damage along with the steering and suspension replacement for safety.  Roger hopes to have the car back on the track in just over a month with the help of his trusty crew.  Roger would like to thank all who came to his rescue saying, "I would again like to thank the gang at F.A.S.T. for the professional way the incident was handled, the Doctor and Paramedics for the check over, and the S.C.R. track crew for the concern shown. I would also like to thank the many people who came by the pit to express concern for myself and the car, it's just amazing how many nice people there are out there."

Smax Take 2 - Darryl Bradford

It was good to see Darryl having a good run in Smax's Astral Projection Dragster, and congratulations in obtaining his license allowing him to race in Top Methanol Dragster.  It must be something in the water from where Smax comes from but with Smax getting his Funny Car License and now Darryl obtaining his who will be next?  It was also good to see Barry Sheavills on hand for mentoring and advice for Darryl who at one stage got very hot when a plug lead split igniting methanol vapours behind the cockpit area.  Thankfully the FAST team were quick to react in their usual no messing feet first straight in approach.

Darryl Bradford in an Astral Projection
Surrey Muscle providing ample burnouts

A Gorgeous Leggy Blonde

If confronted by the sight of a beautiful well-proportioned blonde, what would your chat up line be, would you even use one or would you just get to the point?  Well a certain top fuel driver who will remain nameless has got to get the award for the most predictable chat up line ever.  Spotted in the beer tent talking to her best assets, this driver's chat up line was "I drive a Top Fuel Car, would you like to see a picture of it?" he then proceeds to pull out his wallet and produce a picture of his car. Needless to say her response was rather flat, and that was after he threw in a trip to Finland, better luck next time!

Wild Bunch at the Mopar Nats

Crazy ChrisA field of 23 cars attended the Mopar Nats for rounds of the Custom Chrome, Roy Wilding  Nostalgia Race Cars, Rear Engined Dragster, and the MDRA series of races. Trophies were also presented at this event courtesy of sponsors Real Steel.Clayton Round in the 'Shortshot' Fiat Topolino altered ran a new personal best of 10.942s and was consistently under his dial-in ET's. 'Crazy' Chris Hartnell in the 'Backdraft' slingshot was also consistently under his dial-in to eventually finish 5th overall. Chris was also awarded the 'Drivers Choice' shield for his weekend efforts.Roy Wilding, once again, brought 'Hemi Hunter' out for some more test laps, but unfortunately the engines oil pump drive shaft sheared in half, and didn't make a pass. Rookie Clive Bush debuted the ex 'Chariot of Fire' Buick powered slingshot  successfully but later encountered a minor mechanical gremlin. Pete Loveridge was back in the brightly flamed 'Herr X'  slingshot, and ran an excellent pass on Saturday only to experience transmission problems.Roz Aldred was taking her second outing in husband Colin's 'Classy Chassis' slingshot. Improving on every run, Roz made up more than 2seconds under her dial-in with an excellent 11.729s. Roz also picked up the 'Best Slingshot' award for her efforts.  Tony Froome  completed his Wild Bunch debut (after 27 years away from the sport) in the ex-John Menetrier 'Altered Ego', renamed 'Sundance III'. After a couple of check-out laps, Tony ran the division's lowest ET of the weekend 9.369s, and was awarded 'Best Altered of the weekend' by track announcer  Jeremy Cookson.  Time Travel Video's Nick Pettitt  debuted an all-new injection system on his coupe-bodied 'Kool Kams' dragster. Although the car never made it out on to the track, Nick received plenty of advice from his fellow racers, including Mike Kason who put out a small fuel fire while passing Nick's pit. More personal best's came from Steve Goode's 'Wobble' (10.863), and Andrew Wilcox's' Firefighter'  (11.965). Former Wild Bunch Champion Tony Smith ran .046 off his dial-in in round 1 and .003 in round 2 in the now Chrysler powered 'Cunning Plan' Minivan. In between repairing the cars starter motor, Tony won the event from Andrew Wilcox; Ed Yates (Team Nutcracker), and Dick Sharp (Dorset Horn). All in all a pretty good weekend,  championship points are as follows: -

Custom Chrome standings (after 2 rounds)

1. Team Nutcracker I - 11pts
2=. Angi Wilding - 9pts
2=. Tony Smith - 9pts
4=. Mark Coulsell - 8pts
4=. Team B-Sting - 8pts

Wild Bunch Series (after 1 round)
1. Tony Smith - 9pts
2. Andrew Wilcox - 7pts
3.  Team Nutcracker I - 6pts
4.     Dick Sharp - 5pts

Angi narrowly beating Sarah
That man from Wales Tony Smith
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