2013 FIA Season Wraps Up in England
A long hot British summer lasted one day into the 2013 European Finals before turning decidedly autumnally cooler coupled with the odd light shower. That did not however, spoil the hard fast racing enjoyed by the large gathering of international crowds as records were re-set and personal bests were added to the history books….
FIA Top Fuel — had an eight car entry and was led by Norway’s Thomas Nataas with a 4.016/298 clocking just ahead of Finland’s Anita Mäkelä on a 4.041/298 ticket, the two Maltese entries did well in collecting fourth and sixth qualifiers, 4.172/292 for Chris Polidano and Duncan Micallef a 4.392/213.
Round one saw Polidano’s luck evaporate as his throttle cable broke after the burnout allowing England’s Chris Andrews an easy 4.631/177 pass to the semis. Finland’s Jari Halinen lost a blower belt at three quarter track slowing him to a losing 6.023/111 as Micallef won with a 4.313/260 despite a flash fire before the stripe. Mäkelä’s luck went away after she was shut off with an oil leak on the burnout giving Denmark’s Stig Neergaard a solo 5.411/185 win. The last pair saw Sweden’s Patrik Pers pedal through some tyre smoke but to no avail as Nataas ran a fireballing 4.290/271 win.
Thomas Nataas was earlier declared the FIA European Top Fuel Champion and his 4.031 with the event top speed of 305.04mph was negated by the red light he left on the tree leaving Chris Andrews to click off with a winning 4.924/153. Stig Neergaard managed a good 4.060/291 to take out the 4.642/204 try from Duncan Micallef.
The final pitted Britain against Denmark, Chris Andrews who entered the tour almost mid way through the season left first in the Lucas Oil/African Oil Products machine chased by Stig Neergaard’s Bodie Smith tuned car, Andrews charged to a 4.220/292 as Neergaard went into smoke then fireballed the motor slowing to a losing 4.967/146.
FIA Top Methanol Funny Car — has been an inspiration this year especially for the Swedish Lindberg team as Jonnie Lindberg continued to record some phenomenal numbers en route to winning the FIA European TMFC Championship in his first full year, he also topped the qualifying with a 5.564/256 clocking.
Jonnie Lindberg shook and pedalled on his bye in round one, as brother Johan Lindberg took on Brit, Rob Turner, both getting close to the centre line but it was Turner who notched up the win light with a 6.268/223 win as Johan followed with a 6.999/153 lose. Sweden’s Leif Andréasson seemed to falter on his leave and ran a below par 6.503/238 as England’s Gareth Ellis took the win with a 6.196/236. Belgium racer, Danny Bellio no-showed after earlier suffering a bent crank allowing Stephanie Milam from England to solo to a 6.153/218 win at the expense of a dropped valve and an oil down.
Round two had Turner run a 5.802/241 but it was Jonnie Lindberg’s holeshot and stunning 5.469/262 that took the light. Milam failed to make the round having suffered damage on her last pass, it allowed Ellis to take a solo for the round win, a 6.571/224.
A great day ended after the burnout for Gareth Ellis as he shut off with problems that allowed Jonnie Lindberg’s Pålplinter/Chevrolet backed Monte Carlo to record a new European ET record of 5.426 at 265.11mph for the event win to add to his Championship.
FIA Pro Mod — had a seventeen car field that was led by Holland’s Marc Meihuizen on a 5.963/241, the only car in the fives during qualifying. Sweden’s Micke Gullqvist picked up another prestigious FIA European Pro Mod Championship to add to his collection.
The Brits unfortunately suffered a plethora of red lights in round one, Kev Slyfield out to Meihuizen, Graham Ellis gone to Gullqvist, Roger Moore to Bruno Bader and add to that the breakages of Wayne Nicholson to David Vegter, Andy Wright to Mattias Wulcan and losses, Andy Frost to Norbert Kuno, Rick Garrett to Robert Joosten; however, getting through to the quarter finals was Andy Robinson who trailered Sweden’s Mats Eriksson.
Germany’s Norbert Kuno was shut off with a leak allowing Meihuizen to record a winning 5.940/242, Gullqvist inexplicably slowed to a losing 6.397/225 letting Robert Joosten sashay his way past the champ to take a 6.084/231 win. Robinson joined the other red light Brits as he left too early against Switzerland’s Bruno Bader, a 6.057/231 got the win. Sweden’s Mattias Wulcan who sat number two in the points was taken out by that cussed red light allowing Dutch racer David Vegter a crossed up 9.189/92 win.
Number one qualifier Marc Meihuizen did not make the semi final and it allowed fellow countryman, Robert Joosten the 6.283/232 win. A real close race occurred between Bruno Bader and David Vegter and it was Bader that chased Vegter down, a 6.044/233 beat the 6.061/233 lose.
The final had Bruno Bader in his Gotham City ’63 Vette take an early lead and just holding onto it as his 6.056/230 beat the Pro Dutch Chevy Camaro of Robert Joosten’s close 6.191/231.
FIA Pro Stock — Jimmy Ålund led the small all Swedish field of runners with a 6.537/210, just a tad off his new ET record set a couple of weeks prior to this event. He wrapped up the FIA European Pro Stock Championship with a substantial lead. There was a surprise though as number two in the point chase, Thomas Lindström was taken out in round one by Michael Malmgren, 6.669/207 win to a 6.636/208, won on a holeshot. Ålund easily took out his opponent, Magnus Petersson whose game 6.874/198 was not quite enough for the winning 6.577/210.
The final saw the KW Parts.com Camaro of Jimmy Ålund leave first chased by the Oakley backed Pontiac GTO of Michael Malmgren, it was another consistent 6.582/210 from Ålund that got the light as Malmgren came second with a 6.680/207.
It was again a disappointing entry once more in Top Methanol Dragster, the class seemingly suffering from differences in opinion on some rules. Sweden’s Jonny Lagg was the only competitor and ran a few solo passes. Some other classes were depleted as finances bit deeper and others quite content to run in their own national events sparing the expense of travel.
Event Essentials: FIA European Finals – Sep. 5-8th 2013 – Santa Pod, England
|Top Fuel (1000’)|
|Low ET:||Thomas Nataas||4.016||Norway|
|Top Speed:||Thomas Nataas||305.04||Norway|
|Bump Spot:||Patrik Pers||7.604||81.68||Sweden|
|Low ET:||Jonnie Lindberg||5.426||Sweden|
|Top Speed:||Jonnie Lindberg||265.11||Sweden|
|Bump Spot:||Gareth Ellis||6.131||224.49||England|
|Low ET:||Marc Meihuizen||5.940||Netherlands|
|Top Speed:||Marc Meihuizen||242.39||Netherlands|
|Bump Spot:||Steve Hall||England|
|Low ET:||Jimmy Ålund||6.537||Sweden|
|Top Speed:||Jimmy Ålund||210.85||Sweden|
|Bump Spot:||Magnus Petersson||6.716||205.34||Sweden|
|Sportsman Class Winners:|
|Super Comp||Collin Morrice||8.934||150.55||England|
|Super Gas||Stuart Doignie||9.916||131.44||England|
|Super Pro ET||Paul Marston||8.891||140.75||England|
|Jr. Dragster||Billy Everitt||8.048||80.36||England|
Posting & Photos by: Roger Gorringe www.nitroexposure.co.uk