Posted by: nwracing | July 25, 2016

‘They think its all over …’ Dragstalgia – Santa Pod July 16th & 17th 2016

Of all the meetings I had been looking forward to on the racing calendar then Dragstalgia was the one. Over the last few years it has developed in to probably the best nostalgia meeting in Europe and the variety of interesting race cars and bikes seems to get larger every time it takes place.

We arrived Thursday afternoon as we wanted some time getting the car fettled and also take the opportunity to run on the RWYB day on Friday to get the car. Our intention was to get the base motor finally settled and then turn the NOS back on. Friday morning arrived and the weather was glorious so anticipation was high.

Looking at our data it was clear that we needed to keep leaning the mixture so we put a setting in to the carb and took it out for its first run.

Whilst it had ticked over in the pits it steadfastly refused to do so in the fire up lane and I did the drag racing equivalent of rubbing your stomach whilst patting your head! I also nearly managed to run Chris over as he was bringing me to the line. The result was a Red light and the motor only managed to settle down at half-track at which point it covered me in oil. Fortunately this was just a rocker gasket that had dislodged itself and I had not oiled the track which was a relief.

Back at the pits a quick plug check showed we had gone over the edge and it was leaner than we were happy with. So we tried a slightly different jet combination. At the start line the car seemed to launch ok with startling large plumes of black smoke but then it was all over the track and I’m pretty sure that I covered a lot more than a quarter of a mile!

As Chris towed me back to the pits there was a strange sound coming from the rear axle.  Putting the car back on the stands and firing it up again it was clear that all was not well and a large mechanical clunking confirmed our worst fears, we had broken the diff! Now as this was Friday this was probably the worst case scenario. However, we had booked for the weekend so decided to enjoy the rest of the weekend and sort the diff out when we were back at home.

Removing the rear axle

Removing the rear axle

And what a weekend it was, if you’ve ever wondered about the roots of drag racing then Santa Pod is a brilliant place to start your education  with cars from the roots of UK drag racing in the shape of the Allard Chrysler and bikes like Pegasus and Hobbit. A sight for all the senses is probably the best way to describe it.

A number of things stick out in my mind, firstly our friends Steph and Dave Milam of She Devil racing produced a barnstorming run of 6.18, the fastest in Europe for an Altered, secondly the UK v USA matchups which were absolutely brilliant and many thanks must go to the guys for travelling across the pond. And finally the overall atmosphere at Santa Pod: We were pitted next to a French and an Italian team and there were Germans, Dutch and many other nationalities present and guess what, we all got on! Drag racing has a way of uniting people in a way politicians can only dream of.

On a personal note it was great to see Simon from Eurodragster and finally put a face to the voice, and thanks to the Santa Pod team who put on a great show and last but not least all those people who tried to help us.

Back at NWR HQ the strip down has begun and as you can see from the pictures so far we have found that we need new driveshaft’s and this is before we even got to the diff proper.

half shaft

Twisted splines!

Next job is to get the whole axle out and see what else we’ve done!


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