Main Event Santa Pod 2019
FIA / FIM Main Event
Santa Pod Raceway
24th – 27th May 2019
We headed to Santa Pod on Thursday to set the pit up and prepare the cars and pit for the 4 day FIA/FIM meeting with over 270 drivers and riders for this prestigious event.
Brad is currently in second place in the UK Championship and was looking to score heavily at this event to keep his sights on the 2019 title, hopeful of retaining the no 1 on the car at the end of the season, a tall order at this event with 45 competitors in Brad’s class with many from various European countries, male and female, and a sport where women compete with men on a true equal footing!
Friday morning was a beautiful day with great weather forecast all day, there were 45 drivers qualifying for a 32 car field so the pressure was on to get in the show, Brad’s first run we dialled a 7.64 and Brad ran a 7.67, 3 hundredths of a second over dial was good enough for 8th place so safely in the field.
Brad’s second run we dialled the same 7.64 and ran 7.66, an improvement to 2 hundredths of a second over his dial in, other drivers had improved and Brad actually dropped a place to 9th.
Brad’s 3rd run he left the dial at 7.64 confident that the sun heating the track would bring the time he was looking for and actually ran 7.647, 7 thousandths of a second over dial, once again others improved so Brad had dropped to 15th but this time put him back up to 8th place!
Brad reported hearing a noise from the back of the car, Nick and Cristiann had a look at the car and decided it could be damage in the rear axle so stripped the axle to find that the crown wheel and pinion had stripped 3 teeth and most of the other gear teeth had cracked, this was a terminal problem and it looked like the end of Brad’s meeting.
Geof and Scott Hauser, fellow competitors in the class heard of Brad’s demise and offered to open their nearby race car workshop, www.hauserracing.com and rebuild the diff, we gratefully accepted their offer and Scott returned the diff back at 1030 at night and Nick and Cristiann burnt the midnight oil and put the car back together.
We cannot thank Geof and Scott enough, what a true act of sportsmanship to repair a competitor’s car!
Brad had 3 further qualifying runs but he couldn’t improve on his 0.007 time, this was good enough for 11th place, incredibly 17 competitors were under 1 hundredth of a second, 17th place being 0.009! The 32nd place bump spot was 1 tenth of a second!
The race ladder for round 1 of eliminations brought the surprise that Brad ( currently 2nd in the championship ) would face multiple Junior Dragster champion Joe Kellett who is leading the championship !
In round 1 of eliminations Brad’s 0.04 light to Joe’s 0.07 light gave Brad the advantage and he took the win.
In round 2 Brad faced Mark Bailey; Brad pulled a 0.06 light to Marks very uncharacteristic 0.2 light gave Brad an easy advantage to take the win.
In round 3 ( quarter finals ) Brad faced Callum Swinchatt and ex Junior Dragster driver, Brad and Callum haven’t raced each other for a few years, Brad pulled another great light, 0.05 to Callum’s 0.09 reaction time helping Brad to the win and now he moves into the semi finals.
n the semi Finals Brad faced Dan Giles, Brad knew he would have to be on his game to beat Dan and pulled and impressive 0.03 light, but Dan pulled an 0.02 light, Brad dialled a 7.69 and ran 7.71, 2 hundredths over dial in but Dan took the win with a 7.418 on a 7.40 dial giving Dan the victory by just under 2 hundredths of a second, on the track (at 170 + mph) a distance of 1.38 metres!
So Brad was out but he had a great event getting to the last 4 of 45 drivers, and the great points haul means that Brad now leads the championship, these points have to be ratified
Brad would like to thank, Geof and Scott for their generous help.
Nick and Cristiann for repairing and giving Brad a great race car.
Dave Catton, Tow car driver extraordinaire and all round good egg !
We couldn’t race without their generous support of all our sponsors.
Thank you !!