1965 - 1969

Contributors names in brackets after the entries where applicable. All other material researched by myself - Chris. Click pictures to see a larger view. Text links will open in a new window, close it when you're done.


This year saw the appearance of two nationally distributed drag racing magazines. 'Drag Racing Magazine' was published by the company responsible for 'Karting' magazine and 'British Drag Racing' was a monthly publication with a four colour cover published in association with the BDRA.
This year also saw the building of a new Allard dragster. The new car used the 354ci Hemi motor from Sydney Allards original dragster with a front mounted GMC blower. The slingshot frame was constructed from stainless steel tube and in the interests of engine longevity all its runs were on 100% methanol. With Alan Allard at the helm the car ran throughout the 65/66 season with best times in the 9.3s.
January Ford sponsored a trip to the US for the Allard Dragon. It appeared first at a show in New York before touring several drag strips, running a best of 11.84/120.96. The first time a British built dragster had run in the US. Doug Church took care of the driving duties.
February 3rd The B.B.C.s 'Tonight' TV programme, watched by an estimated 7.5 million people, broadcast "a lengthy film" of American Drag Racing which had been recorded at Fontana Raceway the previous month.
March Pomona, California. NHRA Winternationals. With sponsorship from the Ford Motor Company the Allard Dragon was shipped to the States and became the first British Dragster to run on American soil. Due to the inclement weather the entire meeting was held in one day. From America the car was shipped straight to Stockholm for the leading Swedish Auto Show before returning to the Clapham works of the Allard Motor Company.
March 14th Graveley. BDRA Closed Practice Meeting. The track was open from 11.00am until 4.30pm and despite the cold weather nearly 400 members and friends attended the Cambridgeshire venue. Nearly 60 cars and motorcycles (including 6 dragsters) were present and a total of 680 practice runs were made. Amongst the entries were the first new British dragster of 1965, Jeff Theobalds Jaguar motored car from Exeter (running with twin rear wheels for added traction), John Harrisons A90 Austin Atlantic dragster and  Alf Hagon, who ran under 12 seconds on his JAP bike with a terminal speed of 117mph. He was trying out a new set of cams and an attempt to pump the fuel directly into the induction ports under pressure failed. Gerry Belton brought his Dragon along but sheared the blower drive in the warm up area. Tony Densham ran 11.86/108mph in his Ford powered 'Worden' dragster while Isabel Robinson ran the car into the twelves before blower trouble put it back on the trailer. The new owner of the Herridge Buick, P. Hicks, brought the car along and Derek Metcalf was present with his TR2 engined car.
April 4th At the NSA sprint meeting at Duxford, John Lloyd on his 998 Vincent set the fastest time of the day at 11.44. (Clive Rooms)
April 4th Blackbushe. Jaguar Drivers Club Sprint. 62 cars were entered. Conditions were very, very wet! (Clive Rooms)
April 11th BDRA Drag meeting. (Possibly not held)
April 11th Podington. Bedford Eagles MCC Sprint Meeting. Fastest time of the day was set by Ian Ashwell riding Satan at 11.64. (Clive Rooms)
April 23rd The Weekend Telegraph magazine ran a full colour feature on Drag racing and its prospects in Britain.
Thursday May 20th A Committee from the BDRA visited South Marston Airfield near Swindon, at the invitation of owners Vickers Supermarine, to vet the main runway for a BDRA Meeting to take place in July as part of the Vickers Gala Day. Among the group were George Brown (Bike sprinter and BDRA Vice-President), his 17 year old son Anthony and Alf Hagon. Brown senior rode his 'Super Nero' Vincent while Anthony rode the 250cc Brown-Ariel which was capable of high twelve second runs. Hagon had his JAP bike which had now been fitted with a Shorrock supercharger. After some practice runs that produced 300 yards of violent wheelspin on a wet track it was agreed that there were great things to come from the Hagon JAP. BDRA President Sydney Allard was present to view the strip and try out the newly completed BHRA christmas tree while Alan Allard and Gerry Belton made trial runs in their Allard Dragon dragsters.
May The May edition of Kool Kams, the official journal of the BHRA, carried an advertisement which read, "Mickey Thompson's Harvey Aluminium Special dragster is for sale for the very reasonable sum of eight to nine hundred pounds. This sort of machine at this price would be ideal for a group to purchase and run. The price includes a reasonable selection of spares." The only way Mickey could get the car to the UK in time for the runs at Brighton and Debden in 1963 was to have it flown over by the USAF. Apparently in the haste to undertake this there was an error in the paperwork which resulted in a one-way ticket for the car. Rumours that Mickey would return in 1964 to drive again had never materialised.
May 22nd Graveley. BDRA Practice meet.
May 23rd Duxford. NSA Meeting. Alf Hagon bettered George Browns long standing national record time of 10.29 seconds with a 10.24.
June 6th

Duxford. BHRA/BDRA/NSA/Allard Owners Club Drag meeting. The Second 'Big Go'. 500 members and guests attended the meeting which was organised in association with the Aston Martin Owners Club and Thames Estuary Motor Club. Ten minutes before the start the christmas tree lights developed a fault, short circuited and several feet of wire went up in smoke. Peter Bartlett was on hand to make repairs. A number of competitors were caught out by the scrutineers insistence on clearly marked ignition switches and crankcase breather catch tanks. Apparently paper cups from the refreshment wagon were popular as makeshift catch tanks! Timed runs set the scene for the day. Notable achievements included Mrs Ann Bennett giving the 3.8 Jaguars a run for their money in husband Johns (BHRA Chairman) Pontiac Chieftain, the dragster of Jeff Theobald running 14s having been completely rebuilt since its last outing in March, the first competition appearance of Nobby Hills Houndog II with a 12.32/113 from driver Les Hill and John Hulme taking his works Allard Dragon to an 11.00126. S. Marston broke a halfshaft in his 1500cc Riley while Stella Farrell had a dramatic clutch explosion in her 5.9litre 'Farralac' sports car. Stellas departure from the Top Dragster class along with the non appearance of D. Prices 'Daffyd Ford I' V8 flathead rail (failed scrutineering) and the Herridge/Harrison Dragster Developments Cadillac (described as too fresh to risk ruining an expensive motor) left the class a little depleted. The Hills Houndog II made it to the final. The new car featured last years 3.4 Jag motor in an all new 150" wheelbase slingshot frame, with an aluminium body, front mounted Wade blower, triple SU carbs and Goodyear racing tyres. Also in the final was Richard Wrights 5.4 litre Cadillac T Bucket Hot Rod. This car had a half-Allard half-home made chassis with Buick wheels and an Oldsmobile auto box and rear axle. It had previously appeared as a fiat bodied 'Drag Coupe' and a shortened Austin Pick Up street rod. Houndog took the win as Wright spun the tyres and developed a misfire. Nobby Hills also collected the 'most improved performance' trophy. John Hume's Dragon took Top Eliminator with an 11.11 win over Tony Kinch in his Cortina. Gerry Belton would have attended with his Allard Dragon but he had blown the motor at the last practice day. Instead he drove to the meeting in his Ford Corsair with the Dragons head and blower in the boot. Once there he set about transplanting the units to the Corsair. Once installed he managed to make one run, without the cars bonnet which now did not fit. Due to overfuelling caused by the head and blower being set up to run methanol the smoky misfiring pass netted no more than a 22 second timeslip.

For all class results awards and best times click here.

June 19th Graveley. BDRA meeting. This meeting saw the return to the track of the Dos Palmos gas dragster that Bob Keith drove at the 1964 Drag Fests. It had been purchased by the Croft Drag Racing partnership and was driven by Bruce Ropner and bobsleigh champion Norman Barclay. Making its debut at this meeting was the new dragster built by Allan Herridge which was eventually named Pulsation. (Clive Rooms)
June 20th Long Marston Aerodrome. Evesham Auto Club Meeting for Cars & Motorcycles with two classes for Dragsters. FTD was set at 11.06 by John Hume in his Allard Dragster. Two other dragsters were entered; the Triumph of Derek Metcalfe and the 1500 Ford of Mr Taylor. (Clive Rooms)
June 27th NSA Meeting. Gala Of Motorsport at RAF Debden, Essex. After several runs by competitors the hunt began for tapes to measure the course as the times being clocked were quicker than expected. In the meantime Alf Hagon came out for his first run and hopes were high that with his recent progress today would be the day that Alf would crack the ten second barrier. The first run netted a 10.06. The second saw Alf leave a black line on the strip for the whole 1/4 mile from the spinning rear slick apart from a few 1 foot breaks where the bike had been airbourne over the bumps and a 35 foot stretch where he had shifted into high gear. He destroyed his clutch in the process and clocked a 9.96/148. While the celebrations were going on two officials measured the course and found to everyones horror that it was 26 yards short! The correct end of strip mark had been on the part of the strip that crossed the racing car circuit and it had been worn away by a car race meet earlier in the day. The person responsible for marking out the strip had accidently picked up another mark as the finish line.
July 3rd

South Marston nr. Swindon. BDRA Vickers Drag Meet. Over 10,000 people attended this 'Vickers Supermarine Sports and Social Club Gala Day' with the drag race being the main part of an event which also featured many flying displays. Highlights were Norman Barclay who drove Dos Palmos to a 9.77/155, a new record for a British driver on British soil, and Alf Hagon who ran a best of 10.39/141 on his JAP motorcycle to win his class against Ian Ashwell on his Vincent 'Satan'. Ashwell ran 10.97/136. A total of 59 competitors turned up for the meeting. The vehicles were divided into classes according to vehicle type and engine size. Each competitor had three qualifying runs before the eliminations began. In a bid to minimise any confusion amongst the crowd the decision was taken to run each class elimination to its final before starting on the next class. This caused some problems for the air cooled motorcycles and the un cooled dragsters but fortunately no mechanical failures occured. The delays caused by 'cooling time' however meant that there was no time left after the class eliminations to run the Top Eliminators. The car entries consisted of various saloons, Minis, Sports Cars, a few American Saloons, some circuit racers and the dragsters of K. Stevens, Derek Metcalf, Nobby Hills, L. Moss, Alan Allard, Colin Glass, Tony Densham, Allan Herridge and Norman Barclay. The motorcycles consisted of a variety of straight-line racers, many of which were sprint machines, from 350cc up to the 1000cc-plus bikes of Alf Hagon, Ian Ashwell and Freddie Wells. Keith Sales made it to the final of  Car Class 4 in his Jaguar where he met the Pontiac of Mrs Ann Bennett. Mrs Bennett holeshot Sales and took the win with a 15.60/88 to a 15.59/93. Nobby Hills took 'Houndog II' to a best of 12.25 and won his final with a 12.50/101 against the Riley powered dragster of L. Moss. Class 2 of the motorcycle eliminations threw up an interesting situation when all four of the semi finalists made foul starts. The organisers carried on with the elimination in case the lights were at fault. On completion the lights were judged to be in good working order and all four semi finalists were disqualified. The rain waited until the action on the track had just finished before putting in an appearance, and the wind blew the start line gantry over for good measure!

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

July 4th Podington Airfield. Roosters MCC Spint. (Clive Rooms)
July 11th Long Marston. Evesham Auto Club Sprint. (Clive Rooms)
July 17th BDRA Practice Day. Graveley Airfield.
July 18th Podington Airfield. Northampton MCC Sprint. (Clive Rooms)
July 18th The Observer Colour Supplement carried a two-page colour spread on British Drag Racing. The main feature of the article was a dramatic shot of Jeff Theobalds dragster.
August 15th Duxford. BHRA/BDRA/NSA/Allard Owners Club Drag meeting for Motorcycles & Cars. This meeting was cancelled due to complaints received regarding noise. The organisers were unable to obtain council permission to use the venue.
August 15th Woburn. Due to the cancellation of the Duxford meeting, the BHRA organised a custom show cum picnic at Woburn Abbey. Among those in attendance were Nobby Hills’ Houndog II, Derek Metcalfe’s dragster and Jeff Jago’s pick-up. Mickey Thompson’s dragster should have been there but the tow truck broke down. (Clive Rooms)
August 14th/15th Croft Racing Circuit, Darlington. The Dos Palmos Dragster, which had been purchased by the 'Croft Drag Racing Partnership', made demonstration runs with Gerry Belton behind the wheel. On an 1/8th mile strip he recorded a  6.082125 on Saturday and a 6.306/131mph on Sunday. In the Dos Palmos Diaries Peter Godlee recorded that on the Saturday run the chute failed to open, with Gerry only just managing to stop the car in time. After the Sunday run he noted that the throttle pedal needed to be pushed "right down" for best results. Anthony Bayley was also present with an Allard Dragon. He recorded a 6.585 at a slowing 85.24mph.
August 21st BDRA Practice Day. Graveley Airfield.
August 29th BDRA Drag Meeting for cars and motorcycles. Graveley Airfield. This meeting was cancelled because Gransden Land Yachting Club, who held a lease on the airfield, wanted the venue for themselves. (Clive Rooms)
September 18th BDRA Practice meet at Graveley.
25th/26th September

The Blackbushe Dragfest was plauged by torrential rain. This years U.S. tour was a financial disaster.Runs for the Americans were limited to demonstrations only on the Sunday. Buddy Cortines ran the best et and speed at 8.78/179. Allan Herridge drove his new Pulsation slingshot to a best of 12.31 and collected £12 for the days quickest qualifing run.

To see all the results from this meeting click here.

October Winkleigh Aerodrome, Devon. Rex Sluggett, having built a blown 331ci Hemi Dragster, called The Duke Of Cornwall, arranged a "Demonstration of Drag Racing" at the disused RAF base. He ran a small advert in the Western Morning News newspaper, which was picked up by the local TV company who ran a feature promoting the event on the Friday evening prior to the event. Having expected a modest turnout of spectators chaos ensued as the venue was deluged with thousands of people, causing road closures and a local "state of emergency". Rex was joined by Jeff Theobald, with his Jaguar powered Dragster to provide some opposition. Both cars made a first run, but suffered mechanical problems. The North Devon Motor Club ran some saloon cars to provide some entertainment while the cars were prepared for another run. Jeff's car then threw a rod as it was push started. Rex's car started but clutch problems meant they could only put in one more run.
3rd October

RAF Woodvale Dragfest. Buddy Cortines won the US Competitors elimination and recorded the fastest time of the '65 Dragfest with a 7.74/201. This stood as an unofficial UK record until 1970. In the first round of racing Danny Ongias, who had run the UK's first seven second pass by qualifying at number one with a 7.99, became the first to break the 200mph barrier in the UK. Shortly after Cortines, in his first round race, also ran 200mph. It would be another eleven years before there was another eight car Top Fuel field in the UK. Also at this meeting Allan Herridge matched his 12.31 et from Blackbushe with a terminal speed of 117mph.  Dick Rios and Priness Perry brought over a pair of nitro-burning twin Triumph motorcycles. Rios managed a best of 11.12 on Two-Timer, while Perry, aboard Sonny Scott's Stage Fright, ran 10.53/150, putting him into the semi finals where he would face Alf Hagon. When the time came for the pair to race however Perry was disqualified for taking too long to arrive at the start line. Hagon soloed to a 10.50/147, the fastest time of the day, and went on to win the final against Rios, who suffered gearbox troubles.

To see all the results from this meeting click here (Simon Groves, Steve Collins & Jon Spoard)

October 3rd Podington Airfield. Roosters MCC Spint. (Clive Rooms)
October 16th Elvington. Records Meeting. The first time this event had been held at this venue. Alf Hagon took his 1000cc JAP V-Twin to new World Records for the standing start quarter mile (10.64s), the standing start kilometre (19.90s at an overall 112.41mph) and the flying kilometre (16.22s at an overall 137.88mph). 
Allan Herridge and Peter Billington purchased the UKs entire stock of nitro. This was the fuel that had been left behind by the visiting Americans. Allan had 20 gallons of 55% while Peter went on to import the fuel in larger quantities, and two years later became the UKs sole importer under the name G Max Fuels (still going strong today)
24th October Plans to establish a permanent Drag Strip at Podington airfield near Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, were announced by John Bennett head of a newly formed organisation called 'National Dragways' at the British Hot Rod Associations AGM. During the second world war, between 1943 and 1945, the airfield was the home of the 92nd Bombardment Group of the United States Air Force who flew 274 missions from the site. Later on the strip was used as a sprint venue by groups such as The Roosters Motorcycle Club. At the same time another company was assembled called Drag Racing Promotions. They announced that they were looking for sites in the Midlands, the West and the South of England.
December 19th BDRA Practice Day. Graveley Airfield. The weather was dry and sunny, but unfortunately, there were few cars and bikes in attendance. (Clive Rooms)
February 20th BDRA Practice meet at Graveley Airfield.
March 19th Graveley. BDRA Practice Day. The sun shone virtually all day long which certainly helped all the competitors. Harold Bull in the 950cc Austin powered Stripduster was running consistently in the 13 second bracket. Chris Pattison ran an 11.98 pass in the Allard Dragon dragster which he won in a competition the previous year. Tony Densham put in a couple of 11 second passes before breaking a half shaft in the Worden rail. An interested spectator was Al Eckstrand over in the UK to arrange the visit of the US Commandos drag racing team in the summer. (Clive Rooms)
March 26th/27th. Manchester. The Northern Division of the BHRA held a very successful show at the Manchester Stretford Road Drill Hall. There were 8,500 visitors over the two days, and the cars that they saw included Allan Herridge’s Pulsation rail, the Austin Healey rail of John Harrison, Paul Manders with his partially completed 392 Chrysler powered dragster, Mickey Thompson’s Harvey Aluminium Special rail and Clive Lingard’s 317 Lincoln powered slingshot. The Triumph twin engined drag bikes of Pete Williams and Godfrey Wormald were both on display as was the 250cc bike of Des Heckle. (Clive Rooms)
March 27th. Venue Unknown. V. Church set a new Street Altered E.T. record in the G Class with a 20.135 second run in his BMC powered machine and A. LeFort took his Ferrari to a new Sports & GT D Class WE.T. record of 13.239 seconds. In Production K. Ireland took his Triumph to reset both ends of the E Class record at 18.611/73.15. (Jim & Janet Smith)
April 11th

Santa Pod. BDRA Meeting.  Entry List. The U.K.s first permanent, purpose built dragstrip opened, Santa Pod Raceway near Wellingborough. It rained until midday! There had been some frantic action in the hours leading up to the morning of the event, as the sun rose over the horizon a temporary roof was being fixed to the control tower and the metal staircase was being welded to allow the officials to gain entry to the three story buiding.There was a total of sixty entries including 15 dragsters. Amoung them were Ken Cooper with his Bazooka slingshot which ran low 14second passes, Ken Bunce who debuted the Jaguar powered Barons Barrow with a 15.65, Clive Lingard who had problems with carburettor fires in his 317 Lincoln dragster Purple Heart (the car was later sold to a nightclub owner who put it on display in his disco, which burnt down destroying the car), Chris Pattison with the Allard Dragon he had won in a competition in British Drag Racing magazine, Pete Atkins with his Allard Dragon (still in use today driven by Alan Smith with the Wild Bunch) and another Allard Dragon powered by a 2000cc Bristol engine and driven by Colin Glass. Harold Bull in his Stripduster dragster became the first person to run and receive an official timeslip at the new venue. Tony Densham won Top Eliminator in his  1500cc blown Ford dragster 'The Worden' at 12.32/122mph. P. Huggins took his Triumph powered machine to a new Dragster H Class E.T. record of 14.29 seconds.

Click here to see the results.

April 12th Sydney Herbert Allard died after a long illness. He was 56. Allard was the founding father of British Drag Racing and worked hard to try and get the sport off the ground in the early sixties. He built the Allard Dragster that match raced Americas Dante Duce in 1963 and formed, and was President of, the British Drag Racing Association.
April 17th. SPR British Automobile Racing Club Slalom This was the first slalom sprint meeting to be held at Santa Pod. The course started with a chicane and then on to a roundabout, a sharp 180 degree turn and back through another chicane to the finish. Sixty cars were entered including an Aston Martin DB4 and a Jaguar E Type. There were a few prangs on the straw bales, the worst of which was to a 1650cc Lotus Anglia which suffered some nasty frontal damage. (Clive Rooms)
April 17th. North Weald. The Hunsden Vespa Club held a Sprint Meeting at the Essex airfield. (Clive Rooms)
April 24th. SPR. Thames Estuary AC Sprint. There were heavy showers and strong winds all day. There was an entry of 60 cars plus five dragsters. Derek Metcalfe put down runs of 19.10, 17.53 and 20.14 in the difficult conditions. Ken Cooper in his Mercury flathead put in times of 15.25, 14.37 and 14.31. Allan Herridge only put in two passes but his first run of 12.43 was FTD, and his second run was 13.58. Dave Barrow in his 2 litre Bristol dragster ran 14.22, 13.66 and 13.84. Pete Atkins in his Allard Dragon was consistent with 14.13, 14.05 and 13.70. (Clive Rooms)
May 1st SPR. Jaguar Drivers Club Santa Pod Sprint. Organised by the London & Home Counties branch of the Jaguar Drivers Club. National Dragways invited a number of dragster drivers to attend and give demonstration runs. Those present were Allan Herridge, Ken Bunce, Derek Metcalfe, Tony Densham, Ken Cooper and Harold Bull.
May 28th/29th SPR BHRA Big Go.  Entry List. Perfect weather and a big crowd made for a successful event despite the fact that the timing gear was out of action for the whole day. Grudge races and match racing came to the fore in replacing the usual timed runs. This proved to be so popular that it was decided that this would be a part of all future BHRA meetings. Several competitors found their crash helmets impounded by the scrutineers when they were found to be lacking the correct British Standard numbers (BS1869 & BS2495). They were fortunate that with great foresight Peter Atkins had arrived with a boot full the correct type lids which he loaned out to prospective customers, many of whom became actual customers. This meeting saw the debut of the Competition Altered class. Amoung them were Colin Dunsters Jaguar powered Model Y Juggernaut, John Wrights Austin Pick Up, Martin Hills Oldsmobile motored Model A and the '55 Ford Popular Wild Thing of South Harrows Rat Fink team. Wild Thing is often labelled 'the first Altered' as it had debuted at a private practice session a week before this event. The Jaguar powered machine won the smallest capacity Altered class. Harold Bull was the first man out on the track for the day in his 'Stripduster' slingshot. Running with a dose of nitro he went on to win the DA/1 class despite problems with a lose flywheel. Derek Metcalfe debuted a new engine/head combination in his dragster. The TR2 power unit now sported a grafted-on double OHC Jaguar head minus the front and rear combustion chambers and valve gear. John 'Hardluck' Harrison lived up to his nickname with clutch problems in his blown Austin Healey rail. This was followed by a blown head gasket and a melted piston. His Dragster Developments partner Allan Herridge was having more luck with his Cadillac powered rail. A new back axle and stronger clutch saw the car launch and run so hard that on one occasion Allan was forced to change lanes mid-run. He went on to win the DF/1 class. Alan Allard competed in his Dragon Anglia which he debuted at this meeting. The car was powered by a Shorrocks-blown 1500cc  Ford Cortina motor producing 220bhp as used in the Allard Dragon rail. Fuel starvation to the blower prevented any successful runs. Also debuting at this meeting was the 'Norwestener' dragster of Brian Witty.
June 4th/5th BHRA Commandos Meet. SPRs first meet featuring international drivers.The U.S. Commandos team brought over 4 cars and 1 motorcycle. Publicity for the meeting was featured on both UK TV channels. The timing gear was causing problems again. Backup equipment was used which performed well although no terminal speeds were available until the end of the meeting. The visiting Americans were Larry Arnold (The Lawman V8 Anglia), Al Eckstrand (Dodge Charger), Gil Mudrak ('The Runt' a fuel burning '23 T bodied slingshot ), Bud Barnes (Ultra Sonic fueler) and E. J. Potter with his V8 Chevrolet engined bike. Time trials were held on the Saturday with a practice run, eliminations and a Top Eliminator on the Sunday. Exhibition runs from the Americans were inserted at various points in the proceedings. E. J. Potter put in six runs over the weekend with a best of 10.62 to set the strip bike record. Potters Firestone rear tyres were only good for three runs such was the ferocity of his wheelspinning style. Gil Mudrack ran a best of 9.74 in 'The Runt'. One run saw him narrowly avoid flipping the car as three of the wheels came off the ground. Larry Arnold in the Lawman Anglia ran an arrow straight 10.85 on the Sunday morning after a series of wild out-of-shape passes on the previous day. Bud Barnes set the outright strip record at 8.57 in the Ultra Sonic AA/FD. An earlier run saw have to shut off early with a face full of hot oil. This loss of vision resulted ultimately in the loss of the right hand timing lights. Al Eckstrand ran a series of match races against the Brits in his 'Lawman' '66 Dodge Charger. Harold Bulls 'Stripduster', Keith Sales 3.8 Jaguar and Gerry Tyacks Shelby Cobra all had a go. Tyack won 2/3 of his races with a best of 13.11 while Eckstrand ran a best of 13.22. Al announced that he wished to sell the car rather than take it back home. Star of the UK competitors was Allan Herridge who took his 'Pulsation' rail to a series of ten second runs over the weekend, 10.99, 10.88 and 10.84. His best was a new class B record at 10.68 seconds. His final run ended with a 125mph collision with the centre marking boards and lights. Allan was unhurt and the only damage to the car was to the left hand front wheel. The Top Eliminator title went to Brian Witty in his 'Norwesterner' dragster at only its second meeting.
June 11th/12th BHRA Commandos Second Meet. The visiting Americans were once again the stars of the show. On Saturday Al Eckstrand had another match race with Gerry Tyack's Shelby Cobra. Once again the Dodge Charger lost out, much to the delight of the crowd. E. J. Potter had a hairy moment when he hit the lighting equipment at the top end of the strip. He regained control of the bike and got it stopped safely. There was an unofficial visit from Alf Hagon, with his supercharged JAP V Twin, and Ian Ashwell, with his blown Vincent, who put in some demonstration runs. The ACU had expressed concerns that the appearance of the pair at Santa Pod would draw crowds away from the BMCRC Trophy Meeting at Silverstone, and declared that no times or speeds could be announced or recorded for either bike. Commentator Kenneth Best forgot this momentarily and broadcast the news that Hagon had broken E. J. Potter's week-old strip record by 0.36s with a 10.26s run. This earned him a telling off from the ACU steward. The Junior Eliminator Final was carried over from the previous weekend, and Keith Sales took his 3.8 Jaguar to a win over the 'Rolls Jaguar' Hot Rod of John Wright in the first round, and then G. W. Grabham's Mini Cooper S before beating the Austin Healey of G. Howard in the semi-final. He met the Chevrolet of B. McKee in the final and took the win with a 15.29. Harold Bull won the up to 1000cc division and Gerry Tyack took the Sports & GT final with a new personal best of 12.87. Sunday produced a larger crowd. Tyack was victorious again, this time defeating the Rochdale Olympic of Jerry Jackson in the final. Pete Atkins took his Allard Dragon to a class win, first defeating Harold Bull and the Buckler-Triumph of P. Huggins before beatting Brian Witty's Norwesterner in the semi final. In the final he ran an 11.70 to defeat the Jaguar powered dragster of Ken Bunce. Gil Mudrak (The Runt) and Bud Barnes (Ultrasonic) had a match race in which Mudrak took the win with a 9.03. Larry Arnold put in some crowd pleasing runs in his Altered Anglia, eventually destroying his clutch. Al Eckstrand put in his best time of the trip with a 12.96 from the Charger. Bud Barnes mechanic, Bob Gladstone, took a turn at driving Ultrasonic, the first time he had done so. He later confessed to having "fightened himself silly" on the run against Mudrak. The final run of the day was from E. J. Potter. Having decided to run on the right hand edge of the strip, to help avoid the bump at the top end that had previously unseated him, he clipped the wall initially before momentarily regaining control, but overcorrecting saw the bike launch E.J. into the air at over 100mph. It was discovered later that after putting on his last new tyre before the run E.J. had forgotten to tighten the right hand side of the rear axle. This put an extra strain on the Honda locator he was using and it broke in two on the launch. He was taken to Bedford hospital with concussion, a broken hand and skinned hip. E.J. was back on the bike in Florida two weeks later.
June 19th SPR. North London Enthusiasts Car Club Sprint. (Clive Rooms)
June 19th Long Marston. Evesham Auto Club Sprint. (Clive Rooms)
June 19th Debden Gala Of Sport. A sprint meeting was part of the Gala and several dragsters were invited to attend. Posting a time of 14.05 was Tony Gane in his diminutive 500cc Rudge powered dragster. In the 1500-3000cc Class, Les Turner was quickest in 11.22 with Pete Atkins close behind with 11.70. In the over 3000cc Class, Allan Herridge recorded a time of 11.45. (Clive Rooms)
June 26th Santa Pod Raceway. BDRA Meeting. Only one RAC Scrutineer was present and qualifying did not get underway until midday. There was much head scratching and debate over what constituted an "Altered Car" the rules governing the class not being as clear as they could have been. During qualifying the raceways staging, countdown and starting light system was used for the first time at a BDRA meeting although the traditional flags were used for eliminations with Brian Holmes doing the honours. Alan Allards blown 1500cc Anglia produced its first good runs with rubber-burning sideways launches and rapid gearchanges. A 13.99 was followed by a 13.54 in qualifying. Ken Wilson, who had raced at the Dragfests, put in a single qualifier in his 4700cc Chevy Gilbern at 13.77. The Dragster classes saw some good runs from Les Turner in his 1500cc Turner/Ford at 12.67 and Peter Atkins Allard Dragon 'Dragonfly' at 11.69. Eliminations saw Keith Sales take the Top Modified Production Saloon Car class with a 14.90 in his 38 Jaguar from Norman Watt. Ken Wilson took the Chevy Gilbern to the Sports & GT class title with a class record of 13.66. Allan Herridge set the best time of the day in the Dragster Developments 'Pulsation' with a 10.68/132.5 followed by a 10.73/131. He took the elimination in the over 5000cc class. Harold Bull was running an experimental Wal Phillips fuel injection set-up and he won the 1000cc class with a 13.24. Les Turner won the 2001cc-3500cc class in his 1500cc Turner/Ford Dragster (blown cars were moved up one class). His opponent Peter Atkins car jumped out of gear as the starters flag went up. Ken Cooper took his 'Bazooka' Flathead Ford to the 3501cc-5000cc class win. The 1001cc-2000cc class was won by Dave Barrow in his 1996cc Bristol Dragster. Top, Middle and Junior Eliminator contests were also held. These were made up of the quickest 16 cars overall, then the next quickest 16 and the next quickest 8 running in pairs on the usual knockout basis. Les Turner caused a sensation in the first round of Top when he ran a best ever E.T. for a blown 1500cc dragster at 10.843. He followed this up with an even better 10.840/117 in round two. The third round saw Turner lose to Harold Bull who went on to meet Pete Atkins Dragon in the final. Pete took the win and the trophy. Middle Eliminator went to the Austin Cooper of Colin Rodgers while Junior was won by Peter Poole in his Lotus 7.
July 10th SPR. Herts County Motor Club Slalom Sprint.
July 16th SPR. Midland Motorcycle Racing Club Sprint.
July 17th SPR. BDRA Bike Drag Race Meeting. This was the first all bike meeting held at the Pod. Overnight rain had soaked the course and it threatened with rain for most of the day. In the 250cc class final, Des Heckle was too strong for his opponent Angus McPhail. The 350cc class winner was Eamon Hurley on his Manx Dragster with a time of 12.71 to the 13.40 of Dave Lecoq. In the first round of the 500cc elimination, there were several surprises with P. Green losing to the 1926 TT Panther of Noel Boeros, Mike Biggs beat Ron May, Ron Heading overcame Brian Scammel and Bill Orriss lost out to Phil Manzano. In the second round, Biggs beat Manzano, Heading overcame Derek Leigh, Pete Harman took it over Green and Boero beat Fred Wells. In the semis, Heading finished ahead of Biggs and Harman did likewise over Boero. In the final, Harman drew the bad left lane giving Heading an easy win in 13.40 seconds. In the first round of the 750cc eliminations, Martin Roberts had a bye, Jack Terry beat J Amos, Dick Ansell was too good for J Williams and Keith Power beat P Green. In the second round, Roberts had another bye run, and Keith Power beat the Hagon Triumph of Dave Allen. In the semis, Jack Terry overcame Keith Power and Roberts was too strong for Ansell. In the final, Terry took a holeshot lead but Roberts powered past but then he made the mistake of thinking that he had the race won and shut it off early allowing Terry to pip him on the line with 12.02 to a losing 12.03. In the 1000cc class first round, George Brown on Super Nero beat Clive Liddiard, Ian Ashwell defeated M Alexander and John Lloyd overcame Frank Blackwood. Brown had a semi-final bye and Ashwell defeated Lloyd. In the final, Brown had drawn the bad lane but Ashwell hit problems on his run allowing Super Nero to take the win in 10.55. In the over 1000cc class, there were just three entries; Alf Hagon, Peter Gray and Neville Borham. Hagon had the bye and Borham’s unblown JAP took out the Harley of Gray. Hagon won the final in the FTD 10.27 seconds. There were a small number of cars also in attendance. Mike Hutcherson in the new Houndog III ran a best of 15.57. Journalist Dennis Jenkinson ran a best of 12.93 in the 2 litre Bristol dragster and Harold Bull in the diminutive Stripduster got down to 13.15. (Clive Rooms)
July 24th SPR. Mini Seven Club Drag race Meeting. For most competitors, this was their first taste of drag racing. The minis were divided into seven classes with the following winners: Class 1 M Moorhead 22.01 at 56.92 mph. Class 2 W Sparrow 18.68 at 71.17. Class 3 R Flack 19.46 at 69.54. Class 4 J Dodd 18.42 at 73.91. Class 5 W Grabham 17.13 at 80.65. Class 6 P Harris 16.93 at 93.46. Class 7 G Sparrow 19.45 at 69.98. Fastest time of the day was clocked by P Harris at 16.03 (Clive Rooms)
July 30th SPR. BHRA practice.
July 31st

SPR. Brian Witty took his Ford powered dragster to a new class C E.T. record of 12.674. Don Farrell took his Competition Altered 'Farralac' to a new B class speed record of 112.49. K. Bunnage set both ends of the G Class record for Sports & GT with a 15.312/89.21 in his Marcos. In the Production division I. Caplain set a new C Class E.T. record of 16.155 in his Jaguar while J. Elms set a new F Class E.T. record of 21.480 in his Cortina. (Jim & Janet Smith) 

For all class results and best times click here.

August 7th SPR. BHRA Practice.
August 13th SPR. BHRA Practice.
August 14th SPR. BDRA. Harold Bull took Stripduster to a new Class G E.T. record of 12.429, Alan Allard took his Ford powered Anglia Altered to new records of 13.126/105.93 in D/CA while Ken Obee took his Lotus 7 to set both ends of the E/CA record at 13.470/104.93. In Street Altered K. Costello took his Mini to new records of 20.135/90.91 in F Class and in Modified Production A. Wemyss took his Dodge to a new Class B E.T. record of 13.422 while Keith Sales ran a 14.649/93.46 in 'Megalomania' to set both ends of the C Class record. (Jim & Janet Smith)
August 21st SPR. Austin Healey Club Sprint.
August 28th/29th SPR. The first British Drag Racing Championships.Geoff Barretts Jaguar powered Ford Popular, the Liquidator, failed scrutineering when Tom Hales spotted there was no firewall between the engine compartment and the driver. Brian Witty broke the camshaft in his Mercury powered slingshot Nor Westerner. Nobby Hills debuted his third Houndog dragster, driven by Mike Hutcherson and powered by a 331 Cadillac. Another debut was the Golden Hind, Tony Denshams 7litre Ford powered fueller. The car was a project completed by National Dragways and Ambica Engineering and had originally been the Harvey Aluminuim Special that Mickey Thompson drove at Brighton and RAF Debden in 1963. The car later evolved into Denshams Commuter the next year. This meeting saw the use of handicapped starts for the first time and in the dragster division final Tony Gane hung on to a 2.1 second advantage in his 500cc Rudge engined Wicked Lady, to beat Les Turners blown 1500cc dragster. One of Tonys crew members was a teenager by the name of Dennis Priddle. In the Dragster divisions Allan Herridge took his Cadillac powered rail to a new B class speed record of 129.37. Tony Densham set a new Class E E.T. record of 12.672 in 'The Worden' and J. Fisher set a new F class speed record of 96.58mph in his BMC powered machine. Don Farrell set a new B class Competition Altered E.T. record of 12.980 seconds. In the Sports & GT section  Gerry Tyack took his Cobra to a new E.T. record of 12.750 in the C class. Modified Production saw four new records set. A. Wemyss set a new class B speed record of 107.64 in his Dodge, E. Ellis took his Ford to a new D class E.T. record of 15.617 and B. Harvey took his lotus Cortina to set both ends of the E class record at 16.692/81.97. Production saw J. Watcher set a new B class E.T. record of 14.376 followed by a new speed record of 95.84, while R. Duffell took his Volvo to a new E class speed record of 66.84.
September 4th SPR. Motorcycling Club Sprint. In the 250cc class, Des Heckle put down the quickest time of 13.95, almost a second quicker than second placed man Barry Cooper with 14.89. The 350cc class was a much closer affair with Terry Measures recording the fastest time at 13.33 closely followed by Alec Charolambos with 13.37. Fred Cooper won the 500cc class in 11.21 which turned out to be the FTD. Second placed man Phil Manzano was more than one and a half seconds slower with 12.88. Dick Ansell won the 750cc class in 12.19 ahead of M Wheeler with 13 dead. In the 1000cc class, Ian Ashwell on Satan was suffering gear selection problems but shifting slowly enabled him to take the class win in 11.24 closely followed by John Lloyd with 11.43. (Clive Rooms)
September 10th SPR. BHRA Meeting.
September 11th SPR. Vincent Owners Club Sprint Meeting.
September 17th SPR. BDRA Practice.
September 18th SPR. Thames Estuary Automobile Club Sprint. Ken Cooper took his Ford powered dragster to a new C Class speed record of 105.26 while Les Turner set both ends of the D Class record at 10.661/131.23 in his Ford rail. Harold Bull took the BMC powered 'Stripduster' to a new G Class speed record of 104.06. R. Terry took his 'Terrier' Competition Altered to new F Class records of 14.110/98.04. G. Tyack took his Cobra to a new C Class speed record of 112.49 in the Sports & GT division. (Jim & Janet Smith)
September 24th SPR. BHRA Practice.
September 25th SPR. Sporting Owner Drivers Club Slalom Sprint Meeting.
October 1st SPR. BHRA Practice.
October 2nd SPR BHRA Drag Race Meeting For most of the day, it was very wet, but the strip did partially dry for the semis and finals. Thirty three cars actually competed in the eliminations with some of the larger cars electing not to run due to the soaked strip early in the day. In the Class Eliminations, the winners were as follows; Dragster: A-Harold Bull in Stripduster, C-Colin Glass in the Bristol dragster, E-Ken Cooper in the Bazooka flathead. Altereds: Brian Gibson in the Wild Thing Pop. In the Top Eliminator final, Ken Cooper’s 4185cc Mercury flathead lined up against the 950cc BMC powered rail of Harold Bull. Cooper cut a good holeshot to take the win in 13.89/105 to Bull’s quicker but losing 13.43. Super Eliminator winner was Gerry Tyack in his Shelby Cobra running 13.87/108 to defeat Brian Gibson’s Wild Thing. Dave Render in his 1650cc Fiat Tornado won the Street Eliminator defeating the Chrysler sedan of Eddie Rox. Making demonstration runs was Pete Allen riding Moonraker, a motorcycle inspired by the machine of Michigan Madman E J Potter. It had 4 Manx Norton 350cc barrels and heads grafted onto a common crankcase. (Clive Rooms) Colin Glass also set a new E Class speed record of 101.52mph in the dragster division. (Jim & Janet Smith)
October 8th SPR. BHRA Practice. There were over 100 entries for this, the last event of the year. Bikes outnumbered cars two to one. Moonraker, the four cylinder bike appeared with a new wider slick but couldn’t produce the power to light it up. Houndog III reappeared with the Rolls Royce diesel engine blower re-installed. Its first run was OK but on subsequent runs, it lost power about 100 feet out. (Clive Rooms)
October 9th SPR. Austin Healey Club Slalom Sprint Meeting.
October 15th SPR. Midland Motorcycle Racing Club Sprint Meeting. Moonraker, ridden by its owner Ian Richardson, turned a time of 12.89 seconds.
October 16th SPR. Singer Owners Club Slalom Sprint. J. Rigby took his Lotus Elite to both ends of the Sports & GT F class record with a run of 15.915/91.96. (Jim & Janet Smith)
October 23rd SPR. BARC Slalom Sprint Meeting.


January 12th Olympia, London. The London Racing Car Show. Amongst the Formula One and LeMans cars from names like Ferrari, Brabham and Lola The Commuter dragster made it's public debut. Owned and driven by Peter Billinton and Tony Densham the car was built along the lines of Mickey Thompsons 'Harvey Aluminum Special' that Densham had run the previous year as 'The Golden Hind', albeit with a new chassis as the original had been too badly corroded to use. The Hind had been broken up at the end of 1966 and some of the parts were carried over to Commuter. The bodywork had been fabricated by the Phelps at Fibre Glass Repairs in Bromley.
March 12th SPR. Practice Day. Pete Mylrea took his Jaguar powered Austin to  a new Class C speed record of 99.30mph while T. Faulkner took his Fiat to a new Class D E.T. record of 18.768seconds in Production. (Jim & Janet Smith)
 March 27th

SPR. Car Meeting.

For all class results click here

April 9th SPR. C. Leaney took his Volkswagen powered dragster to a new class F E.T. record of 13.765.
April 16th

SPR. BHRA Motorcycle Meeting.With only a small entry field, several different eliminations were run. There were Class eliminations followed by Division eliminations, then a Super Eliminator and a Top Eliminator. In the Class eliminations, Ian Richardson on Moonraker won the A class, Eamon Hurley on the 1300cc Manx Dragster won the B class, D class was won by Dennis Allen on Ramrod, Tony Heading on his Velocette won the E class, Eamon Hurley won the F class on his 350cc Manx Dragster and David Pickett won the G class on his Yamaha. In the Division eliminators, Ian Richardson beat Les Field and then Dennis Allen to take the A class with FTD 11.80 at 121. In the final of Super Eliminator, Ray Brown ran 15.34/83 to defeat Eamon Hurley. In the Top Eliminator, Dennis Allen got his revenge by beating Ian Richardson on Moonraker with a run of 12.22/110.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

April 23rd

 SPR. The Easter meeting drew a competitor list of 70, the largest yet, and the largest ever spectator attendance with 6000 fans and TV cameras too. Mark Stratton debuted his BSA Scout bodied Altered, 'Hustler' which ran a 265ci Chevy motor. He made it through to the final of Super Eliminator where he was beaten by Keith Sales in his 370ci Chevy powered 'Megalomania' a glass fibre bodied fastback with an E-Type front end. Sales ran 13.54/104.6 to Strattons 14.12/95.4. Dennis Priddle set new E.T. and speed records in the I Dragster class driving Tony Ganes 'Wicked Lady' Rudge powered machine. The new marks were 12.639/101.94. A. LeFort took his Ferrari to a new D Class speed record of 108.93mph. F. Foley took his Imp to new G Class Modified Production records of 17.019 seconds and 87.49mph while in Production L. Neville took his Austin to set new records of 21.429seconds and 63.98mph in Production G Class. (Jim & Janet Smith)

 May 14th SPR. Practice Day.
May 28th/29th

SPR. BHRA Big Go. A new record competitor list for Santa Pod, this time 86 in all. Clive Skilton was competing in a 997cc Ford powered version of an HRF Opus which he drove to the track from Hemel Hempstead. He also won the Top Street Eliminator driving an E Type Jag. This meeting also saw the first Continental competitor to run on British soil, U.S. Serviceman Sydnor Harris with a 283 motored '55 Chevy 'Little D', complete with cheater slicks and a Hurst shifter, which he had driven from the Ramstein USAF base in West Germany. He ran a best of 15.583/90.01 in the Street Elimination. Keith Sales put in a trial run in 'Megalomania' on Saturday and broke a halfshaft, he replaced it only to have the propshaft fail the next day. Pete Allen ran some demos on his twin Triumph engined bike and Ian Richardson did the same on 'Moonraker'. Dennis Priddle won his class in 'Wicked Lady' and was entered in the Top Eliminator but lost to Alan Ing in the ex-works Dragon dragster who went on to meet Harold Bull in 'Stripduster' in the final. Bull showed he was a true sportsman when Ing had trouble getting his car to fire up. He cut his engine on the line and waited while Ing was "pushed furiously about the start area". The car eventually fired, Bull re-started and the race was on, with Ing taking the win with a 10.874/122 to a 13.087/100 from the less powerful 'Stripduster'. In Competiton Altered C Class D. Cottingham set a new E.T. record of 13.846 in his Jaguar powered Ford Popular while in G Class M. Thomas set both ends of the record at 15.131/94.34. The Street Altered class saw no less than six new records set. In B Class M. Kent set a new E.T. record of 14.502  in the 'Facel Vega' while D. Davis set the MPH record at 96.71 in his Pontiac. R. Rose set both ends of the Class C record with a 12.045/126.42 in his 'Maclaren Rose'. Both ends of the D Class record went to C. Jones in his Opus/Ford at 15.928/73.31 while D. Render set both ends of the E Class record at 13.800/92.08 in his Ford powered Fiat. Finally in Street Altered K. Bullen set a new MPH mark of 66.31 in the G Class. In the E Class of the Sports & GT section G Tyack took his Porsche Carrera to set both ends of the record at 13.534/113.51. Modified Production saw three new records with a new MPH mark in the D Class from E. Ellis in his Ford while J. Smalley set both ends of the F Class with a run of 16.348/86.58. In Production G. Bennett took his Studebaker to a new MPH record of 88.57 in the C Class. A drivers/organisers meeting was held on the Sunday night at which some decisions were made that would affect the way meetings would be run in the future. To view these click here.

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

June 11th SPR. Practice Day.
June 17th/18th

SPR. This was a motorcycle meeting and also the first weekend of the US Commandos Drag Racing Team’s two meetings during which they were running demonstration passes. Alf Hagon was trying to become the first British rider into the 9 second bracket, he didn’t make it but it wasn’t for lack of trying. He made runs of 10.11, 10.41, 10.16, 10.13 and 10.52. Peter Allen debuted a new bike with two 650 Triumph engines. Over the weekend, he made 12 runs, all in the ten second bracket, and one run was coupled with a terminal speed of 157 mph. In the 500cc class, John Hobbs was making a name for himself by running an 11.95, the first rider in his class to dip under twelve seconds.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

June 18th Long Marston. The Evesham Automobile Club held it's annual sprint over two distances, 880 and 440 yards. Over the quarter mile two classes were run, up to, and over 2 litres. In the smaller class competitors included Ken Obee in his Lotus Super 7 (14.43 seconds), Mick Wheeler's Scorpion Imp dragster (15.52) and Tony Gane's 500cc Rudge dragster (13.60). In the over 2 litre class there were a couple of regular drag racers entered. Colin Dunster in the Austin-Ruby Stagecoach Altered, which ran a best time of 15.03, and Gerry Tyack. Not sure which car Gerry ran as he was a late entry, but he ran a best of 13.04. FTD over the quarter went to Miss Patsy Burt in her McLaren with 11.22 seconds. (Clive Rooms)
June 24th/25th

SPR.This meeting saw the second visit from Bob George, Al Eckstrand and the combined American Commando Drag Race Team. The class eliminations were run on the Saturday, and the night meet completed that evening, but Sunday was rained out and the Major Eliminations were not run. Alan Ing took the Top Eliminator and the D class titles. Dennis Priddle was driving Tony Ganes "Wicked Lady" and won the I class for Dragsters. Within 24 hours of the meeting being called off the RAC had made all the necessary arrangements for the meeting to be re-run on the following weekend.

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

July 1st/2nd

SPR. Rain Date Meeting. The re-run of the Commando Team Meeting from the previous week. As the Class Eliminations had been run on the previous Saturday the first day was a general practice and match race day. The Commando team promotors had worked hard all week to promote the event and on the Saturday Ron Jelinek took the twin engined Buick rail out to a local carnival to help publicise the next days racing. On the track Bud Barnes put in a wild run in his "Ultra Sonic" rail finishing in the opposite lane to the one he started in. Later in the day Tony Densham, with friend and collegue Peter Billington and assisited by Bud Barnes mechanic Bob Gladstone, pushed the Commuter out onto the strip for its first fire up. With Gladstone in the cockpit the car was pushed up the track until the oil pressure was up and then Bob dropped the clutch and it fired first time. This operation was repeated many times while Bob tuned the newly fitted Hilborn injection system. Also making use of the late evening track time was Keith Sales who had fitted a 1957 Oldsmobile rear axle to his "Megalomania" and Harold Bull whose "Stripduster" rail appeared with a front mounted cabin blower attached to the BMC 'A' type motor for the first time. On the Sunday Al Eckstrand took a drive in "Megalomania" and recorded a  12.5. Tony Densham took to the cockpit of the Commuter for his first run but as the car fired the magneto drive failed and that was it for the weekend. 20 cars contested the Competiton Eliminator ranging from the 14 second Lotus of Ken Obee to BHRA secretary Mick Collins "Half a min" running in the 23 second bracket. (Handicaps were used in competition, cars running to the class records which stood at that time).Hugh Gunderson took the final in his Singer Chamois "Oscar" with a 16.981 to defeat the Rat Fink Drag Racing Teams Geoffery Pearson in his "Mini Hater" Morris Minor 1000. The Super Eliminator contained, amongst others, Mark Strattons "Hustler", Gayle Fenners Mustang, Cliff Beasleys Austin Cooper and the Barracuda of US Airforceman Fred Batchelder. Top Eliminator was as usual reserved for the eight fastest competitors. Alan Ing emerged victorious with an 11.901/116.14 win over Ken Coopers 12.883/106.84.

For Eliminations results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

July 9th

Duxford. Alf Hagon, was present with his 1260cc Hagon-JAP. He had increased the size of the inlet port for the Shorrocks blower from 2 to 2 5/16 in. in preparation for an attempt at breaking into the nines. He had run consistant 10-ones in his last three meetings. With a 30% nitro load he made his first run, a 10.10/150, during which he experienced some steering wobble. The cause of this became apparent as he came off the throttle, the front tyre was flat. A skillful effort from Alf got the machine stopped safely. His next run was a 10.03. He then lowered the rear slick pressure from 17 to 14psi for his third attempt as the bike had slewed sideways on both previous launches. This time the bike ran straight and stopped the clocks at 9.93, the first nine second run outside the USA. (Original entry contributed by Alf Hagon)

July 9th SPR. Practice Day.
July 16th

SPR. BHRA Motorcycle Drag Race Meeting. In the final of Super Eliminator, Ian Richardson on Moonraker just crossed the stripe ahead of Dennis Allen on Ramrod. Richardson’s time was 11.504/123 to Allen’s 11.506/112. In the final of Top Eliminator, John Lloyd put down the only 10 second run of the day on his Vincent at 10.84/130 to see off the 12.48/124 from John Henderson on Blood-Shot.

For all class winners click here. (Clive Rooms)


July 23rd

SPR. Car Drag Race Meeting. Drag Racing & Hot Rod Magazine Trophy Meeting. In the first round of Top Eliminator, Harold Bull in Stripduster, now with a supercharger, was surprisingly beaten by the Square One Oldsmobile engined car, 12.74/100 to a losing 13.07/86. Ken Cooper then defeated Brian Ringsell in the Wee Green Pea dragster with a 12.36/113, Alan Ing in the Allard Dragon put down an 11.48/112 to send Derek Metcalf back to the pits, and Ray Archer in the Jag powered Blunderbus ran 13.69/95 to see off Alan Blount’s Weekend Warrior. In the semi-finals, Ken Cooper ran a PB 12.00/113 which was too strong for the Square One car, and Alan Ing recorded an 11.02/124 which was too strong for Blunderbus. The final was an easy win for Ing as his 11.22/121 was too quick for Cooper’s 12.33/110.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

August 13th SPR. Practice Day.
August 20th

SPR. Motorcycle Drag Racing Championships Meeting. Santa Pod was paying out £10 for each sub ten second run and Alf Hagon collected £20. Alf’s first nine was a 9.93, and his second was 9.679 coupled with a terminal speed of 143.88 mph. The ET at the time was the worlds quickest. It came in the final of Top Eliminator against Pete Allen on his twin engined Triumph machine. Allen could only manage 10.91/129. One interesting fact about Hagon’s record breaking run was that his front tyre deflated on the run which didn’t cause any problems under power, but meant quite a hairy time slowing down!

For all class winners click here. (Clive Rooms)

August 27th/28th

SPR. British Drag Race Championship Meeting.  Sunday saw the running of the Class Eliminations, the first heats of some of the major eliminations and some demonstrations from Tony Densham in the 'Commuter'. The first saw the car bog off the line and then rapidly pick up speed as Tony got to grips with the power. The E.T. was 10.30, the fastest of the day so far. A second run later showed that Tony was gaining confidence in the car and he clocked a storming 9.10/141, the quickest ever by any British built car. Also on hand for demos was Alf Hagon who put in a nine second run on the JAP. His second run of the day ended before it had begun when a broken crank pin seperated the flywheel and wrecked the crankcase on the start line. Pete Gray brought along two Harley Davidsons, the first was a street bike on which he performed a selection of stunts for the entertainment of the crowd, the second was his supercharged, nitro-burning sprint bike which dropped a valve on the start line before its first run. After action on the track had finished the 200 campers, and the assembled competitors, made the most of the warm evening and various parties sprang up, one of which was being organised by the start line crew. They had laid claim to Jack Stillwells 'Stripside Stores' and were supplying free drinks with music and dancing. For reasons which are not apparent Clive Skilton decided to see how many women he could cram into the cockpit of his 'Henry T' Hot Rod. The answer being a staggering 15! Monday saw Tony Densham out for another demo but some backfiring on the fire up indicated problems and that was his weekend over. Alf Hagon had stayed at the track and put in a smoky run on Pete Allens supercharged Triumph twin, and Ian Richardson put in some demos on  'Moonraker'. The eliminations produced some great racing. Keith Sales missed out on his chance of a Super Eliminator title in 'Megalomania' in the second round when his parachute came out as he left the line against Peter Mylrea in 'Stagecoach'. Mylrea made it to the final where he lost out to Dave Riswick who was driving the 'Hustler' altered. Only six dragsters were entered for the Top Eliminator which would decide who took the Championship crown. Alan Ing, in his blown Cortina engined 'Dragon' rail, had missed a gear and put a rod through the block on the previous day but was back out with a rebuilt motor using a block that another competitor had lying in his garage. The other drivers in Top Eliminator had decided that Alan would be allowed back into the running whenever the car was ready. He defeated Harold Bulls 'Stripduster', 11.604/121.65 to 11.728/114.94, in the first round, got a bye-run in the second where he recorded 11.776/118.06, and advanced to the final by beating Maurice Hicks Jaguar powered 'Avenger' with an 11.752/113.25. His opponent for the title was Ken Cooper who had earlier run a personal best of 12.050. There were doubts that Ings temporary motor would stand up to another full pass. Both cars launched well and stayed together until half track where the motors of both began to falter. It was close at the top end but Ing crossed the line first with a 12.869/117.51 to a 13.280/101.73. This meeting saw the introduction of a 'Ladies Eliminator' Christine Skilton, driving Clives E Type, beat Diana Floyd in Jagos T while Rachael Harvey beat Pam Metcalfe, the only woman to try her hand in a dragster in husband Dereks 'Wombat'. Christine took the final win over Rachael.

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

September 10th SPR. Practice day.
September 17th

SPR. Motorcycle Records Meeting. Just a couple of strip records were broken at this first Records Meeting. Newcomer Mick Merrick took the strip record for three wheelers at 12.531/107.41, and John Lloyd on his Vincent Special reset the C Class record at 10.558/136.45.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

September 24th

SPR. Records Meeting. The line up for this meeting promised to be one of the best yet, 17 Dragsters, 19 Altereds, a team of 13 Americans with big Stockers from Ramstein in Germany, Tony Densham with the 'Commuter', Alf Hagon with his JAP Dragbike and Ian Richardson with the 'Moonraker' bike. Unfortunately rain marred the proceedings and half way through the Class Eliminations the meeting was called to a halt for an extra long lunch break. At 3 p.m. Drag control decided that the meeting would continue, despite the wet conditions, with a reduced eliminator and the loyal fans were treated to some decidedly 'hairy' racing. Although it was late in the season some new cars made their debut, among them 'Orange Crate' Derek Benbows 303c.i. Oldsmobile powered Pop, Reg Sommers Zephyr 6 powered rail with its unusual front suspension set up and Clive Skiltons '64 Stingray. Clive made a little piece of history at this meeting when he became the first person to win both the Super Eliminator (in the Stingray) and the Competition Eliminator (in the 'Henry T' Altered) on the same day. He also won the Sports & GT B  and the G Street Altered Class Eliminations. Alan Ing won the Top Eliminator, defeating Harold Bull in 'Stripduster'. Densham, Hagon and Richardson wisely decided not to run in the wet conditions but there were some demonstration passes from one of the most unusual vehicles yet seen at Santa Pod. Jack Daly put in three runs in his Turbonique  rocket powered Go-Kart. Unfortunately I can find no times or speeds for this machine and no details other than it launched with a bang, slowly built up speed, crossed the line looking like it would never stop and the vapour trail it left behind brought tears to the eyes of spectators and officials.

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

October 8th SPR. Practice Day
October 15th

SPR. Last chance Motorcycle Meeting.

For all class results click here

October 21st/22nd Elvington, Yorkshire. The International Sprint Organisation Records Weekend. This was the first time the event had been open to the viewing public. Entry fee was one pound. Tony Densham in the Commuter recorded runs of 9.418, 9.158, 9.219, 8.811 and 9.08 in the standing quarter mile record attempts. The final two runs bracketed together resulted in a time of 8.915 seconds, well inside Alan Allards previous record of 9.37.  He also took the standing 500 metre record which previously stood at 12.66, with a two way average of 11.20. In the flying quarter mile attempts Patsy Burt took her 4.5 litre Oldsmobile powered McClaren to an average of 6.128. Alf Hagon made history with the first Motorcycle record in the nines on his monster JAP. Alf was a big hit with the spectators with his trademark slick spinning and smoking up the strip. Even the International Steward stood at the line with a look of stunned disbelief after Alfs first departure. The time was 10.050. On the return run he recorded a time of 9.859 for an average of 9.9545. He is then reported to have put the bike up on its stands, climbed into his van and gone to sleep. In all a total of 89 national and international records fell to seventeen challengers.
October 22nd

SPR. Last chance Car Meeting. The day started off damp from overnight rain and the puddles on the strip slowed down the first competitors in the practice session which was extended until 12.45pm. Keith Sales had a new set of headers on 'Megalomania' but the rain soaked strip slowed him to a 14.843 in practice with some serious sounding engine trouble which put the car back on the trailer. Making its debut, and creating a lot of interest, was John Woolfes 427 Shelby Cobra. Woolfe put in three practice runs of 13.529/97.94, 13.391/110.25 and 12.828/112.61. He went on to take the Sports & GT B Class with a 13.173/110.13. He was then entered in the Super Eliminator where he defeated David Render in the 'Tornado' Fiat/Ford Altered, ran 12.909/107.87 to beat Peter Mylrea in 'Stagecoach' and met Mark Strattons 'Hustler' in the final. Stratton took the win, with a 109.89mph terminal speed and no recorded time, to Woolfes close 12.723/112.11. Ian Demaine put on a spectacular start line show in his Mustang powered Zodiac when oil leaked onto the headers and set the sump alight, resulting in Ian and most of the start line crew getting covered in foam. Top speed of the day went to Alan Blount in his 'Weekend Warrior' rail at 13.60/121.07 which also won him the B Class Elimination. Alan Ing was dominant in the Dragster classes again, winning the D class with a 11.922/117.23, which was the quickest time of the day, and the Top Eliminator where he defeated the 1500cc Rootes powered rail of Chris Leaney. With time to spare at the end of proceedings some match racing was in order, Pete Atkins taking his Cobra powered T Bucket to a win over Ian Demaine while John Woolfe and Clive Skilton held a best of three. Skilton had a two second start in his Stingray and was caught and beaten in the first race by Woolfe. In the second Woolfe left too early and pulled a red, handing the win to Skilton. In the final and deciding race John was careful not to repeat this and waited too long to catch Clive at the top end.

For all class results click here. (Jim & Janet Smith)

Allan Herridge began building a 138" wheelbase slingshot called Motovation. The car featured a Hilborn injected 301 small block Chevy running on nitro. (Jon Spoard)


The BDRA & BHRA merged to form British Drag Racing and Hot Rod Association.
The Allard dragster was re-named the 'Allard-Skilton' dragster after Clive Skilton acquired a share in the car. Business commitments meant that Alan Allard had been unable to run the car as much as he would have liked so Clive took over the driving duties.
January 3rd-13th Horticultural Hall, London. The Autospeed 68 exhibition organised by the B.R.S.C.C. Amoungst the exhibits wereTony Denshams Commuter dragster and Alf Hagons JAP dragbike.
February 23rd- March 3rd Stockholm, Sweden. Hot Rod Show. The Commuter dragster was among the exhibits, along with one of the other Scandinavian dragsters which were built using the body panels from the same FGR molds. Harold Bull's Stripduster was also on show along with Colin Kettley's Hemini, a mini pick up based Altered with a mid-mounted 392ci Chrysler Hemi. Whilst there the shows organiser, Bo Sandeberg, applied the cars distinctive green and gold metalflake stripes.
March Drag Control announced in Drag Racing and Hot Rod magazine that in an agreement with Santa Pod Raceways management all previous records would be abandoned and the record book be re-written "into line with the new surface now being laid at the raceway" The pre-season advertising for SPR boasted of the new "seven second surface" in anticipation of some new record performances. Other changes included moving the start line back, re-locating the pits to run alongside the track with the fire-up road between the two, and the addition of the first spectator banking on the opposite side of the track.
March 31st SPR. First practice day for cars only
April 7th SPR. First practice day for bikes only. L. Field set a new A Class Competition Solo Motorcycle ET record of 14.127 on his Chevrolet powered machine. (Bill Dossett)
April 15th

SPR. Easter Monday. Season Opener for cars.  10,552 spectators turned up for the first meeting of the season. Amongst those present were Tony Densham with the Commuter who set a new low E.T. mark of 9.052 with both head gaskets blown, Clive Skilton in the Allard-Skilton Chrysler rail who set a new terminal speed of 163.40mph, and the debut of a new car, the Keith Black hemi powered Tudor Rose of the Priddle/Sluggett team which ran some promising low nine second shakedowns. With Rex Sluggett driving the first run stopped the clocks at 10.25/154, the best being an impressive 9.409/161, which was a new A Class dragster record. Nobby Hills debuted his Houndog 3 rail which had a 154 inch wheelbase, American style body and a 1955 Cadillac Engine (5.7L) "Movin" Mike Hutcherson was doing the driving duties. Another debut  that created a lot of interest was 'Mean Machine' the ex-Bill Thomas/Dick Harrell 427 Chevy II "Funny Car" driven by Bill Slattery. With no windows, fat slicks and an altered wheelbase it was these cars that were the forerunners of the funny car as we know it today.  Bill put in a couple of 12.3s before lunching the transmission. Densham and Skilton held a match race which saw the Commuter lose fire twice before Skilton was given the green and ran 9.138/163.4. D. Render set a new E Class Street Altered speed record of 94.16 mph in his Lotus/Ford and J. Chant set a new G Class Modified Sports Production speed record of 89.77mph. In Sports Production G. Belton set both ends of the CC Class record at 13.582/104.60 in his Ford while K. Barnes drove his Honda to set both ends of the G Class record at 18.685/70.87. J. Copp set a new Modified Production speed record of 100.21mph in the CC Class. Also in Modified Production P. Shelton set both ends of the E Class record at 14.498/94.88. In the Production class John Wright set both ends of the C Class record at 17.019/81.04 in his Jaguar while K. Barnes took his Honda to set both ends of the I class record at 21.684/58.62.(Bill Dossett)

To see all class winners from this meet click here (Jerry Cookson)

April 21st

SPR. Season Opener for bikes. About 3500 people turned out for the first bike meeting of the year, unfortunately many of them left early after long delays in track action. The delays were put down to confusion caused by the new track layout, a temporary loss of power when SPRs generator broke down, and the number of people "milling about" in the pit area preventing riders from getting their machines to the start line. Also a light aircraft decided to drop in using the strip as a runway! Alf Hagon brought out his re-vamped JAP for demonstration runs, complete with a repainted frame and and multi-coloured anodised alloy fittings. His first run netted a 9.644/148.59, the fastest run ever in the UK but, much to the disappointment of the crowd, very little in the way of his trademark smoking rear slick. Always one to please the fans Alf came out again and smoked the full quarter mile to record a slower 9.718/144.09. In the Top Eliminator Final Ian Ashwell , riding his 1000cc Vincent 'Satan', took an early lead over the 500cc Triumph of John Hobbs. Ashwell then missed a succession of gears and Hobbs caught up with him, the pair crossing the line together. In their excitment the timekeepers missed the indicator which told them who got there first! The sporting duo each declared that the other guy won but later the win was awarded to Ashwell.

To see all class winners from this meet click here. (Jerry Cookson)

May 5th

SPR. Car meeting. Alan Allard set both ends of the D class Competition Altered record at 13.513/102.04. B. Harvey set both ends of the Modified Sports Production F Class record at 16.284/81.43. K. Sales set a new Modified Production ET record of 14.917 while P. Harris took the speed record at 93.98, both driving Jaguars and R. Alonso took both ends of the Production B Class at 15.158/95.97 in his Mercury. (Bill Dossett). Clive Skilton ran low E.T. and top speed of the meeting with a 9.268/160.77 run. Mark Stratton was out in his Hustler altered, now with a new L88 427 Chevrolet motor, running a best of 13.05/102.35. Closest race of the day was Keith Sales, in his "SS Draguar" Jaguar, against the Mercury Cyclone GT of Rod Alonso. Keith took the win with a 15.204 to Alonsos 15.203! Nobby Hills Houndog 3 won Top Eliminator with an 11.49/105.71.

For all class results click here. (Jerry Cookson)

May 19th

SPR. Motorcycle Match Race meeting.  After the poor organisation of the seasons opener meeting for bikes it was imperative that this meet ran without a hitch and the editor of Drag Racing And Hot Rod magazine, John Bennett, was called in to oversee the proceedings. It seemed to work with an average of 40 races every hour. There was one delay when Pete Smith, riding his 650 Hagon Triumph, drifted into the finish light mirrors breaking them and three bones in his foot. The format was as follows; each rider made two qualifying runs to determine which bracket they would compete in. The brackets were split from 10.5 seconds, in varying steps down to 19.4 seconds. The first round of each bracket was a best of three match race between each pair of riders with the next rounds following the same pattern until there were two bikes left in each bracket. Simple eh? Ian Ashwell won the fastest bracket on his 1000cc Vincent with mid ten second runs at 130mph. Ian and John Hobbs ran a match race to decide the confusion caused from their final race at the season opener. Ian agreed not to tip the can to give Hobbs a chance with his 500cc Triumph. Hobbs took full advantage of this and beat Ashwell 2/3.  In Competiton Solo Motorcycle John Lloyd set both ends of the C Class at 10.363/141.44 on his Vincent and R. May took his Triumph to a new F Class speed record of 118.91. In the Street Solo Motorcycle class M. Copelin took his Triton to a new D Class speed record of 102.35. (Bill Dossett)

For all class results click here. (Jerry Cookson)

June 2nd/3rd

SPR. BHRA Big Go. Cars only. Pete Atkins set both ends of the CC Class Competition Altered record at 11.643/125.47. Ken Obee set a new E Class Modified Sports Production ET record at 13.930 in his Lotus 7 while T. Faulkner took the speed record at 98.91. Also in MSP, D. Sinclair ran a new ET record in the G Class at 15.148. (Bill Dossett) A record entry of 95 cars attended this event. For the first time ever one of the UKs top racers, Clive Skilton, was running in competition in the Allard/Skilton rail. Clive and crew were determined to be the first into the eights and ran consistently under 9.2 seconds at over 160mph. His best of the weekend was 9.005. Rex Sluggett was driving Tudor Rose, also attempting to get into the eights. He didn't come as close as Skilton but set a new terminal speed record on his first run at 168.35mph in 9.097seconds. His second run saw an E.T. of 9.3 seconds and an improved speed of 179.53mph. Bill McGrath pushed his Jaguar powered Roadster 'Goink' the full length of the strip to make the next round of eliminations, his E.T. was 790.865 seconds, over 13 minutes! He red-lit in the next round. In the Sunday morning practice Mark Stratton ran his best ever time of 11.1/129.5. Allan Herridge also ran his best ever in his injected Chevy rail of 10.3/143, only to have his timing gear blow on the next run. Bill Slattery returned with the ex-Bill Thomas/Dick Harrell 427 Chevy funny car 'Mean Machine'. He had added a four speed box and 200lbs of ballast in the trunk to try and get the front wheels to lift. He made a wild pass of 12.02 seconds but the fronts stayed on the ground. He lowered the tyre pressures to 15psi on the next run but broke the rear axle on the start line. Les Turner ran a new personal best in his four cylinder Ford rail of 10.2/132.4, only to find he had split a piston. Three bikes were present to give demo runs. Steve Perry ran a best of 13.6/114 on his V6 Ford powered machine. Dennis Allen took the nitro burning 'Ram Rod' to some ten second runs and Alf Hagon ran quicker every time he came out, culminating in a best of 9.432/153.85. The finals took place on a rain-soaked track and Clive Skilton took the honours in Top Eliminator with an 11.40/129.03 to Brian Ringsells 14.02 in 'Taxi'. Clives dad took the final win in the Viva Drivers Eliminator. R. Rose set both ends of the CC Class record at 11.809/120.77 in his McLaren/Ford. (Bill Dossett)

For all class results click here. (Jerry Cookson)

June 15th/16th

SPR.  Combined car and motorcycle meeting including night racing. Cars and bikes on Saturday, bikes only on Sunday.  Tony Densham was on hand with the Commuter and took top speed of the meeting at 9.2 seconds with a terminal speed of 168.63mph. Clive Skilton was entered in the Allard/Skilton rail, he ran low E.T. and best time for competing cars with a storming 9.043/167.50. On his second qualifying run he lunched the clutch but still stopped the clocks at 9.5/144. Roy Phelps brought along the Fibre Glass Repairs Corvette Stingray wheelie car and managed to get all four wheels off the ground at one point. The meeting took on a match race format with cars grouped in brackets, and paired off, according to their qualifying times. Bracket One ran from Skilton's 9.04 to 12.8 seconds. Skilton's breakage gave a bye to Alan Blount. Pete Atkins in Slo Mo Shun took an 11.6s win against Derek Metcalf's Strip Star. Ken Cooper's Bazooka Too took an 11.7 victory over an 11.9 from the Opus One of Cliff Jones. Harold Bull also advanced to the semi finals in Stripduster with an 11.72 against Pete Ringsell in the Rinsall/Reynolds Taxi. In the semis Blount took an easy win with a 12.03 after Atkins left too early. Cooper then beat an off-form Bull with an 11.7 to a 12.04. In the final Cooper made a promising holeshot but Blount caught and passed him at half track to take the win with an 11.28/120 to an 11.77. In the Bracket Two (12.08 - 14.07s) semis Reg Sommers took a win in his MAB rail against the Geronimo car of Mick Tickner, and Gerry Cookson's Trouble Shooter beat the Lotus of Ken Obee. Sommers took the final win with a 13.35/99.6. Number Three Bracket (14.08 - 16.00s) semis saw Rod Alonso's Mercury Cyclone GT take a 14.8 win against a 15.07 from Gary Goggin's Mustang. Bill Weichelt took the other semi win in his Firebird against the Leprechaun of Mick Cunningham. Alonso took the final win with a 14.8 to a 15.35 from Weichelt. Bracket Four (16.01 - 19.05s) saw Chris Urlwin's Uncle Otis Vitesse make it to the final after opponent Jim Wanberg, in his 57 Chevrolet, red lit. There he met the Cortina GT of Stan Rapson who had taken a bye in the previous round. Urlwin took the final win with a 17.4 to an 18.2.

On the Sunday John Lloyd took his nitro burning Vincent motorcycle into the nines for the first time, a 9.84, this was the first ever sub-ten second run in the world for a 1000cc machine. There was almost another rider in the nines. Dennis Allen took his 750cc Triumph to a 10.086/138.31. John Hobbs had some issues early on which resulted in disappointing 12 second runs, but after some fettling he ran a best of 10.97/124.22 from the Olympus Triumph. In the first round of Top Eliminator Lloyd, who had won the C Class Eliminations with a 10.41/147.93, took an easy win over the Ingenious 750 Triumph AJS of Reg McCarty, 10.309/146 to 12.52/106. Hobbs beat the Norton of Chris Bartram 11.52/118 to 11.723/112, and Mick Butler took the 1000cc Pegasus to a 14.978 win over a 12.377 from Don East's Triumph! Dennis Allen on Ramrod had won the D Class Competiton solo eliminations, with a 10.46/133.87, made it through the first round, but gearbox failure meant he was out. Lloyd then set the pace with his 9.84 at 146.63mph, a run which resulted in a broken clutch shaft, putting him out of the running for the final. Hobbs meanwhile advanced with a strong 10.976/124, going on to meet Butler for the title race and taking the win with an 11.024/124.

For all class results click here.

July 7th

SPR. Summer Match Race. Mark Stratton set both ends of the B Class Competition Altered record at 11.030/131.06. M. Wheeler set a new G Class Dragster speed record of 105.49 in his Rootes powered machine. B Lawrence set a new E Class Street Altered ET record at 14.121. C. Plummer set a new F Class Street Altered speed record at 77.46. K. Barnes set both ends of the F Class Modified Production  record at 15.206/90.66. Gary Goggin took his Ford Mustang to a new CC Class Super Stock Production speed record of 95.97 and R. Ours took his Chevy to new ET and speed records of 18.935/71.63 in the D Production class. (Bill Dossett). With Clive Skilton absent, as he had been unable to get a new clutch for his Allard Skilton rail, only Tony Densham with the Commuter and Rex Sluggett with Tudor Rose were on hand to put in some demo runs. First out was Densham who put in a smooth 9.2. Sluggett followed this with a smoky9.5/168.92. Densham came out a second time and put in a storming, out of shape 9.1/170.07 to take the overall top speed and E.T. of the day. To everyones excitement the two were due to come out at the end of the meeting for a side by side race. Unfortunately it began to rain and the decision was taken (unusually) that it would be too dangerous to run the UKs two quickest cars on a wet strip. Roy Jameson was present with an experimental prototype Rolls Royce Merlin powered sports car, essentially a chassis with a motor. Some personal bests were set, Mick 'Tik' Tickner, in the Oldsmobile powered 'Geronimo', put in his first ever ten second run, a 10.901/136, in qualifying. In his first race, against Tony Ellisons Jaguar powered Austin Ruby, Tik went one better and took the win with a 10.05/143.47, to give him the top E.T. and speed of the meeting amoungst the competing cars. Mark Stratton was running slicks for the first time on the 'Hustler' Chevy Altered and dropped into the tens for the first time with a 10.71/134. The two met in the Top Bracket Final, both cars launched sideways, Stratton lifting slightly before nailing it and taking the win with an 11.97/129.87 to Tiks 12.00/141.44.

For all class results click here. (Jerry Cookson)

July 14th SPR. Practice day.
July 20th/21st

SPR. Combined car and motorcycle meeting including night racing. The first ever side by side run by two British built top fuel dragsters.Tony Densham in Commuter Vs Rex Sluggett's Tudor Rose.Sluggett red lit, smoked the full quarter and ran 9.312/176.78. Densham ran a 9.036/163.93. (Jon Spoard) This was also the first ever side by side nine second match race in the UK. In the second race between the two cars Rex rolled the beam for another red light but sat and waited until Densham launched before hitting the throttle. The Commuters motor blew at the 1/8th and Rex took the win with a 180.83 mph terminal speed. Densham coasted over the line with a 9.82 E.T. In the qualifying sessions Dennis Priddle had taken the weekends first drive in Tudor Rose and ran a 9.343/141.84. His second drive in the car clocked an easy 9.503/157.23. Mick Tickner took Geronimo into the nines for the first time with a 9.973/143.27. Allan Herridge ran a new personal best of 10.20/141.84 in his Motovation Chevy rail. Tony Densham ran a strong 9.20/166.94 and Clive Skilton, in the Skilton/Allard rail clocked a 9.236/156.49. Clive Skilton entered the eliminations having been advised not to run with a damaged head gasket. He ignored the advice and shut down the Ringsell-Reynolds 'Taxi' and Alan Blounts Chevy powered 'Weekend Warrior II', before meeting Mark Stratton in the 'Hustler' altered for the final. Stratton made a good start and left the line ahead of Skilton but Clive smoked the tyres the whole way through, passing Mark at about 100 yards, and winning with a 9.543/148.15 to a losing 10.95/124.22. The end of the meeting saw Allan Herridge and Mick Tickner running a 'grudge match' with Tik just taking the win with a 10.174 to Bootsies 10.193, another new personal best.

R. Geary took his Triumph to a new D Class Street Solo Motorcycle E.T. record of 13.397. Phil Eeles took his Honda to a new H Class Street Solo Motorcycle speed record of 58.82mph. Neville Barham set both ends of the B Class Competiton Threewheeler record at 12.556/105.60(Bill Dossett)

For all class results from this meeting click here. (Jerry Cookson)

July 28th SPR. Vagabonds MC Motorcycle Sprint Meeting. The format for this meeting was timed sprints in the morning followed by match races and knock-outs after lunch. The only two UK riders to have broken the ten second barrier, Alf Hagon (1300cc JAP) and John Lloyd (1000cc Vincent) were present to run a best-of-three match race. Amid much excitement both riders lined up for the first round only to both break their drive chains as they left the line. Lloyd quickly repaired his machine but suffered a gearbox failure on his next outing putting him out of action for the rest of the day. Hagon however came back out and laid down his quickest ever performance, a 9.401 with a terminal speed of 155.76mph. Ian Ashwell then brought his Vincent out to challenge Hagon and managed a 10.174 but was no match for Alf who crossed the line with another new personal best of 9.208/154.8. (This was to be the quickest ever time for the bike). Other results included a win in the 350 class for Bill Orris (Rudge) in 11.635 as his opponent Ron May suffered a con-rod exiting his Triumph through the sump. In the 250 class Des Heckle took the honours with a 12.185. The 500cc class was won by John Hobbs on his blown Triumph twin with a 10.729. Dennis Allen took the 750 win even though his only run (10.387) ended with a destroyed gearbox. G. Wilkins was the eventual knockout winner on his 500cc Triumph. (Thanks to John Hobbs for the information). 
August 4th SPR. Car meeting. The meeting was rained out (reported as being only the second time this had happened in SPRs history) but not before Ken Obee had escaped a spectacular crash when his Lotus spun out at over 100mph and slammed into the crash barrier. Ken was completely unhurt and put this down to new regulations making seat belts and roll bars mandatory.
August 10th/11th

SPR. Combined car and motorcycle meeting including night racing. The Drag Racing and Hot Rod Magazine Trophy Meeting. Originally scheduled as a practice day this was the re-run of the rained out meeting the previous weekend.  Tony Densham took the Commuter to Santa Pods first eight. An 8.891/173.16 alongside the Oldsmobile powered Geronimo of Mick Tickner, the quickest unblown fueler outside the USA at this time. Densham received a cheque for £50 as the prize for the first eight second run. 45 minutes later the Commuter was out again for a solo run.This time Densham ran 8.459/180.83, the lowest ever E.T. in Europe. In the Super Eliminator Gerry Cookson put in some of his quickest runs in the 'Trouble Shooter' dragster to meet Pete Atkins Cobra Altered. The final saw Cookson get a hole shot and hold the lead to the 1/8th before the Altered came storming past, Atkins then lost top gear and watched Cookson regain the lead before dropping a couple of cogs in desperation and winning by half a cars length at 13.30/113.64, in second gear! On the Sunday it was the turn of the bikes. Roger Barnes pulled a huge wheelie in the first round of the Class E eliminations, coming down hard and hitting his chin on the handlebars, but kept the power on and ran a 15.38 before having five stiches put in the cut. He came back out in the Compettion Eliminator. Ronnie Vane broke the Comp Eliminator class record on two occasions on his 998cc Vincent, leaving it at 13.52 seconds. In the first Heat of Top Eliminator the two favourites, Dennis Allen and John Lloyd, met. In a close race Lloyd took the win with a 10.18/132.10 to Allens 10.30/134.59. Lloyd defeated Don East in the final, 10.32/140.65 to 10.82/125.94, before sitting out the second heat until the final round. Dennis Allen fought his way through the second heat to meet Les Turner in the Final, and took the win with a 10.54/132.80 when Turners machine failed. The two heat winners then met for the Grand Final. Allen pulled a red light and ran 10.614/131.75 to Lloyds winning 10.29/139.86. With the eliminations out of the way a 'Certified Record Session took place with silver cigarette boxes up for grabs for the sucessful competitors. Desmond Heckle cut a whole second off the Class G Competition Solo record, with a new time of 12.313, and Phillip Kersey lowered the H Comp Solo record from 16.34 to 14.76 on his 125cc Bultaco.   Allan Herridge and Alan Blount made it through to the final of Top Eliminator. Blount got the holeshot in his Weekend Warrior and held on to a 10.71/123.61 victory over a 10.46/141.44 from Herridge's Motovation. Doug Harler took his Dodge Charger to a win over Rod Alonso's Cyclone GT in Competition Eliminator and the Street Eliminator title went to the twin cam Ford powered Austin A40 of Tim Dawson Collins over the Black Bandit Chevrolet of Jim Wanberg. Roy Phelps put in some demonstrations in the Santa Pod Wheelie Stingray, managing to keep the front wheels up for 130 yards or so.

For all class results click here. (Jerry Cookson)

In the dragster classes Alan Blount set both ends of the CC class record in his Chevrolet powered machine at 10.661/132.10. Alan Ing set both ends of the D class record at 10.967/124.69 in his Ford powered rail. M. Cunningham set both ends of the E class record at 14.397/89.45 and B. Parkins took his Triumph powered machine to both ends of the I class record at 14.414/88.18. Doug Harler took his Chrysler to both ends of the B class Super Stock Production record at 14.099/103.09.G. Reeve set both ends of the E class Street Solo Motorcycle record at 15.082/86.51 on his Vincent. In Competition Threewheeler R. Vane took hisVincent to a new C Class speed record of 101.51mph and A McFadzean set both ends of the D Class record at 13.270/102.88.(Bill Dossett)

August 10th/11th Scandinavian Raceway, Anderstorp (Part of the F1 circuit), Sweden. S.H.R.A. 'First Go', Swedens first Drag race Meeting. The S.H.R.A. sponsored the trip over to Sweden for the Sluggett/Priddle 'Tudor Rose' and the Allard/Skilton rail. Both teams arrived on the Friday and opted to make a practice run. Clive Skilton was still working in London so his mechanic, Colin Wills, found himself in the hot seat. Sluggett was having traction problems in Tudor Rose so the tyre pressures were upped to 45psi resulting in Rex laying 300 yards of rubber on the first run. Skilton flew in on the Saturday afternoon to find his car waiting at the start line! Legend has it that the Swedes couldn't understand why he would not climb straight in the car and drive it in his suit and tie! While Clive changed into his firesuit Rex Sluggett put in a run which bogged off the line and then became a very smoky 9.60. Skilton then put in his first run and also had trouble on the launch, almost killing the motor, but recovering to a 10.60. Another smoky run from Tudor Rose before both crews began to work on the ailing Skilton machine. Plugs and oil were checked and the timing re-set. They even oiled the slicks in an effort to break loose. Approaching the start line Clive pushed the brake on and the car slid forwards, he pulled it back into stage and ran over Rex Sluggetts foot. Rex spent the rest of the weekend on a crutch. On the Sunday Dennis Priddle took over the driving from Rex and put in an 8.53, making him the second quickest man in Europe by the end of the weekend (see Santa Pod entry above). The first run off saw both machines pulling wheelies with Priddle winning at 8.80 seconds. Priddle took the second round also, both cars launching more smoothly, but Skiltons chute failed at the top end, someone forgot to remove the safety cord. The final round saw Skilton take an early lead but in his bid for revenge the blower let go and Priddle powered through for the win. Christine Skilton was loaned a 1968 Mustang to run on the Sunday. She managed a best of 14.90.
August 17th/18th SPR. Combined Car & Bike Meeting with night racing. After the previous weekends achievements in Sweden by the Priddle/Sluggett Tudor Rose Team the scene was set for a showdown between them and Tony Densham's Commuter. Rumours that the Swedish timing system was unreliable helped set the scene for the 'Battle Of The Giants'. With Sluggett still on crutches Dennis Priddle put in a couple of nine second runs, a 9.3 and a 9.0 ten minutes later. Densham then stamped his authority on the proceedings by putting in an 8.68/176. Later, in the darkness, the two cars lined up side by side and, on the green light, left together both smoking the tyres. Commuter got out of shape and Densham had to lift at the eighth as Priddle kept his boot in to record a winning 8.871. Mick 'Tik' Tickner took the Number One Eliminator spot in Geronimo with a win over Reg Sommers MAB Dragster. Number Two went to the Scorpion rail of Mick Wheeler, beating Doug Harler's Dodge Charger. Keith Sales won Number Three in his SS Draguar with a win over the Juggernaut of Bob Eyre. Mike Cunningham was the victor in Number Four with his Leprechaun rail. Priddle brought Tudor Rose out again on the Sunday morning for an attempt to beat Densham's 8.45 second strip record, but had to shut off at 1000ft after getting out of shape culminating in an 8.8/173.
September 1st/2nd

SPR. 3rd Annual Championship meeting. Cars only. An estimated 8000 fans turned up for this event. Proceedings on Sunday were hampered by rain. The Tudor Rose of the Sluggett/Priddle team and Tony Densham's Commuter, having only put in gentle practice runs the previous day, had a three round match race. In the first round Rex Sluggett (running on methanol only) pulled a red light but Densham got to the line first with an 8.52/167.79 to an 8.69/160.77, the first side-by-side eight second race the UK had seen. Both cars were back at the start line half an hour later, this time with Dennis Priddle in the driving seat of Tudor Rose, and 30% nitro in the tank. This time the Chrysler took the honours with Priddle getting the hole shot, smoking the whole quarter and recording an 8.88/148.81 to an 8.83/166/78. The third, and deciding, round saw Densham too eager to take the honours with a red light on his 9.05/149.93 while Priddle, now with a 38% nitro load, once again smoked his way to the win, lifting before the line as the car twitched, and recording an 8.46/171.23. The 1968 Championship final was down to Allan Herridge in Motovation against Mick Tickner in Geronimo. Herridge had destroyed the timing gear on his Chevrolet powered rail the previous day, and rebuilt it with old parts overnight. When the call came for the final Tickner was ready, but Herridge's push car was stuck in the pits. The track marshalls attempted to bump start the car, to no avail, and Tickner was given the OK to go on a solo. But instead of taking the Championship there and then he sportingly offered to postpone the race until Herridge was ready. Once both cars were fired and at the line Tickner got the jump on Herridge only to watch as the Chevy powered past him to win with a 9.90/141.64 (a new personal best and Allan's first nine) to a 10.07/144.09. the Super Eliminator was won by Mark Stratton in The Hustler with an 11.80/116.96. US Serviceman Joe Copp took the Competition title with a 13.5/103 in his '57 Chevy Colt 45 Maverick. Keith Elliot took the Street title with a 16.5/84.25 in his Red Witch Jaguar.

For all class results click here. (Mick Tickner)

September 14th Brighton Speed Trials. Ian Ashwell, well known motorcycle drag racer and sprinter, was killed when his Vincent machine "Satan" malfunctioned at around 150 mph and he was thrown off. (Clive Rooms)
September 15th

SPR. 2nd Annual Motorcycle Championship meeting.The meeting was severely affected by the weather with only the Class Eliminations being completed. There was a strong headwind which meant times were lower than usual. There were 58 entries for the meeting but only 46 competed in the Class Eliminations. Alf Hagon was making demonstration runs, but the weather meant he could only put in a single pass which was 9.3/157.73.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

September 23rd Honington Air Base, Suffolk. Alf Hagon set a new motorcycle speed record over a flying 1/10th mile speed trap set up on the 9000 foot runway. With a much higher gear ratio than used for drag racing a tow start was required for the nitro burning Hagon-Jap twin. His first warm up run at three quarter throttle gave a trap speed of 179mph after the rear tyre broke loose at 170. His second run saw a speed of 189mph after a pushrod dropped out as Alf shifted into top gear. The third run saw the clutch give up before the speed trap and a speed of 180mph. The last, and most successful run saw the manifold let go in the speed trap but still resulted in a 206.54 mph run making Alf the first Englishman to go over 200mph on a motorcycle. (Mick Tickner)
October 5th Elvington Records Weekend. The Priddle/Sluggett team ran the Tudor Rose fueler to a new World Record for the standing quarter mile. Dennis ran an 8.291 which was backed up with an 8.301 for a new record of 8.296 with an average speed of 108.460mph. John Woolfe drove the Hustler 2 twin Chevy engined dragster to a new standing quarter mile World Record for the 'A Class' (over 8000cc) with a two way average of 12.325. John Hobbs took his blown 500cc Triumph to a new standing start kilometre World Record while Dave Lecoq with the unconventional Dragwaye blown VW/Porsche bike ran a Standing Start Quarter Mile time of 9.859, with a two way average of 9.97. This made him the third motorcyclist in the UK to go under ten seconds, but it was not quick enough to take Alf Hagon's 9.95 record. George Brown took Super Nero to the highest speed of the weekend with a 182.08mph blast over the flying kilometre.
October 6th

SPR.  Last Chance meeting for cars. In the Street Altered class 'G'  T. Wickett set a new speed record at 77.76mph in his B.M.C. powered machine. In Modified Production class 'CC' J. Copp recorded a new E.T. record at 13.869 in his Chevrolet. In Super Stock Production M. Collins set a new speed record at 73.42mph in the F class while in Production class E there was a new E.T. and speed record of 17.838/76.22 set by A.Ward. (Bill Dossett)

 Tony Densham put in an early 8.75 before Rex Sluggett in Tudor Rose set a new class A Dragster speed record with a 9.42/182.82mph blast, at the end of which he hit the timing lights a damaged a front tyre. That evening, with front wheels borrowed from Allan Herridge, Dennis Priddle took the driving seat of Tudor Rose and lined up alongside Densham. A holeshot from priddle saw Commuter trying to catch up and, despite getting crossed up and lifting before the finish, Dennis took the win with an 8.28/167, a new track record, Commuter followed in spectacular fashion with flames from a popped blower and an 8.77/157.

October 19th Silverstone. This was the date for the BRDC Gold Leaf Clubman’s Championship and the British Drag Racing & Hot Rod Association had been invited to the circuit to put on a static display and also a short demonstration down the pit straight. In attendance were Commuter, Tudor Rose, the wheelie Stingray, Rob Skinner’s Midas Touch, Johnson & Mullan’s Invader, the Good Vibrations Pop, Stripduster and Strip Star, Don Davis’ The Bandit Pop, Fred Whittle’s Shutdown, Tony Brown’s Limelight, the Church’s Goldrush Pop and the BSA of the Hustler team. Most of the cars including Commuter but not the wounded Tudor Rose, made smoky demo passes down the straight. (Clive Rooms)
October 20th

SPR. Last chance meeting for bikes. SPR Motorcycle Championships Re-Run. At this re-run meeting, most of the competitors who attended the 15th September meeting, were in attendance. Even though the weather didn’t look very promising, the organisers decided to run an Eliminator for the Championships and another one for non-qualifiers. (Clive Rooms) P. Eeles set a new Street Solo H Class E.T record of 22.230 on a Honda. In Competiton Threewheeler R. Vane took his Vincent to a new C Class E.T. record of 13.490 (Bill Dossett) John Hobbs won the Motorcycle Championship Top Eliminator title.

For all class results click here.

November 3rd

SPR. Combined Car & Bike Meeting. Among the highlights of this meeting was Harold Bull’s diminutive Stripduster dragster running 10.6, 10.4 and 10.5. The Marshall-Dickson 394 Olds powered Good Vibrations Anglia ran a PB of 12.88/104.6 and John Lloyd on his 1000cc Vincent bike set top time of the day at 10.33/142.28. John Hobbs dipped under the E Class record on his 500cc Triumph with a time of 10.75/132.45. (Clive Rooms). . Mike Hutcherson in Houndog 3 took his third Top Eliminator title of the year (due to the oppositions red light) with a winning time of 13.3/63.25mph

For all class winners click here. (Clive Rooms)

December 1st

SPR.  1500 fans braved the December cold at this final meeting of the year. The anticipated debut of the Sluggett/Priddle Tudor Rose 2 failed to materialise and there were no 'big' cars in attendance. In Top Dragster Harold Bull was out early for qualifying but blew a head gasket on his first run. Undeterred Harold decided to continue running, tightening down the head before each run. This paid off as he ran the quickest qualifying time of 10.68/130.89, his best ever top end speed. John Harrison in Jynx set a new class record of 12.79s but destroyed his clutch in the process leaving a three car field for eliminations. Bull took his first round win with an 11.164/131.23 win over an early shut off 15.31 from Reg Sommers MAB. Alan Blount had a solo run, but the Chevrolet engine in his Weekend Warrior II was smoking heavily from the headers and he clocked a 12.38/99.11. Blount decided to continue to run in the final, despite the failing health of his engine, to make it a race for the spectators. A valiant 11.40/112.36 however was no match for an on-form Bull who ran a spectacular 10.14/132.10 for his first major title win. Four cars were entered in Middle Dragster. Pete Wilson brought his Martini Go Kart all the way from Guernsey and laid down a 13.37/104.06 in qualifying, which made the other competitors sit up and take notice. In the first round he took the win against the Leprechaun rail of Mick Cunningham who left too soon and shut off early as Wilson recorded a 13.47/104. In the other first round race John Whitmore in Obsession took a 13.89/94.43 win over the Triumph Keele Kart of Brian Parkins who trailed at 14.30. In the final Whitmore got a hole shot over Wilson and took the win with a 13.81/95.24 to a quicker 13.58/103.63. Middle Comp Eliminator also had a four car field. Dave Collis in his recently aquired Chevrolet powered Opus One ran 13.283/107.99 to defeat the Jaguar Midas Touch of Rob Skinner with a 14.50/95.98. The Marshall-Dickson Oldsmobile powered Anglia took the other first round win with a 13.94/104.28 as Bill McGrath lunched his Jaguar engine in Gloink. In the final it was Collis that took the win with a 13.42/107.07 to a 13.71/104.82. In the eight car Junior Comp field only one entrant was a regular Santa Pod competitor, the Mini-Hater of Geoff Pearson. He met the modified Triumph Spitfire of Peter Yorke in the first round (Yorke had driven from Guernsey with Pete Wilsons Martini Kart on his trailer) and lost. Yorke then lost out to one of three visiting circuit racers, the 292 Ford powered Morris Minor of Mike Bennion in the semis. Bennion had defeated Simon Eldridge in the first round. The other circuit racers, the Jaguar powered Anglia Janglia of Mick Hill and Nick Lees in Mike Berman's 1648 Ford Berpop met in the semis, Hill having defeated John Tarbox in a borrowed 1498 Anglia, and Lees dispatching Bob Fisher's Ford Falcon. Lees took the win and went to take the final over Bennion with a 15.23/90.25 to a 15.64/92.25. Doug Harler took his Dodge Charger to the Top Street win when Pete Shelton's Cortina bogged on the line. A determined charge from Shelton almost got the win but Harler, who shut off early,  crossed the line half a car ahead at 15.92/65.96 to Shelton's 14.92/94.88. Shelton had prevoisly defeated Gary Goggin's Mustang in the semis 15.02 to 15.26, and Harler had a semi final bye having defeated Joe Rico's 302 Mustang in the first round. Junior Street went to Reg Clark's Hannibal II with an 18.43 win over a 19.73 from Fred Bolden's Anglia. Gary Goggin (GT 350 Shelby Mustang) and Cliff Jones (327 Corvette Stingray) held a best of three match race. The first went to Jones, 15.07 to 15.29, the second to Goggin, 15.15 to 15.19. In the third and deciding race it was Jones that took the glory with a 15.29 to a 15.52. In a four bike Top Bike class the final win went to Ray Feltell's Philanderer with a 12.57/109.89 over a 12.84/94.16 from Neville Barham. The Middle Bike final was a one horse race as George Wilkins failed to make it to the line, leaving Geoff Reeve to take the honours on his Vincent with a 17.06/75.36. Keith White took the Junior win with an 18.14/70.74.

 Mike Bennion set both ends of the B Class Street Altered record at 15.445/94.88. (Bill Dossett


SPR decided not to run any more Bike only meets.
A new 200" frame had been built for Tudor Rose but the rail was dismantled early in the year and sold. Dennis Priddle was asked at Easter to take over the driving of the Mark Stratton/John Woolfe Racing 'Whistler' Reliant GTE.
January 25th/26th The BDR&HRA in conjunction with Drag Racing & Hot Rod Magazine held the "Drag Racing '69" show at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon. Among the car exhibits were the Sluggett/Priddle 'Tudor Rose 2' dragster (this car was the successor to the original Tudor Rose and was unfinished at the time of the show. It was never completed), Tony Densham's 427-Ford 'The Commuter' dragster, the Allard/Skilton dragster, the FGR Stingray, Allan Herridge's 'Motovation, Colin Mullan's 'Invader', Harold Bull's 'Stripduster', Colin Kettley's 'Hemini', Peter Atkins 'Slo-Mo-Shun' Ford T altered, Tony Brown's 'Limelight' Jaguar dragster, Don Davis's 'The Bandit' Anglia altered, John Siggerys 'Geronimo', Fred Whittle's Chevy 'Shutdown', Derek Metcalf's V4 'Stripstar' rail, Bill McGraths 'Gloink' Triumph-Jaguar altered and Patrick & Chris Church's 'Gold Rush' Pop. The bikes included Alf Hagons JAP and Les Turners 'Soopa Doopa' Triumph. (Rupert Lloyd Thomas) Attendance was 9500.
March 2nd SPR. Clubman Meeting. The meeting did not start until 2 pm because of ice on the track. Due to water getting in the equipment, there were no lights or timing equipment, so it was declared that the meeting would be just a practise. There were few competitors and spectators. Among the racers present were Harold Bull in Stripduster, Walt Ithell in Agravation, Vern Foale in Sidewinder, Pete Wilson's Martini Special, the V6 powered Cortina of Hugh Gunderson, Doug harler and his Charger and the Mustang of Joe Copp. Despite the freezing conditions there were 10 bike riders.
April 6th/7th

SPR. A reported 10,000 people attended the Easter meet. Harold Bull in Stripduster set new et & speed records in the F/D Dragster class at11.247/130.24. P Smith ran a new speed record in the Street Altered D class at 89.61mph while C Plummer took the et record with a 17.001 second run. N. Johnstone ran 17.144 seconds to set a new G/SA best. In the Sports Production category G Pearson set new B class records of 14.392/98.43 in his Chevrolet, T Leake ran his Aston Martin to new C class records of 13.592/101.01 and A LeFort took his Ferrari to new D class records of 12.844/108.70. In Super Stock Production Bill Weichelt ran a new et record in his Ford at 14.733. In Production F class R LeCount set new et and speed records at 19.451/67.61 in his Fiat. All these records stood until the end of the 1969 season. (Bill Dossett)   'Commuter' was the only Top Fuel car present after the demise of the Priddle/Sluggett team. Clive Skilton's car was waiting for parts. A challenge race took place between Tony Densham and Harold Bull in 'Stripduster'. Bull was given a two second head start over Commuter and a determined flat-out charge from 'King Harold' took the win with a 10.68/127 to a tyre-smoking 9.27/152 charge from Densham. On a later demo run Densham clocked a smoky 8.85/141. The Top Dragster final went to John Siggery in 'Geronimo' whilst Middle Dragster was won by John Whitmore in his BMC powered 'Climax'. Ed Gurney took the Top Competition title in his Buick powered 'Hush Too'. Dennis Norman ran a string of ten-second passes on his double Triumph to take the Top Bike win.

For all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

April 27th

SPR. BDR&HRA Club Meet.  C. Watts set a new Sports Production F Class speed record of 68.59mph and in Super Stock Production M. Sargeant set both ends of the G Class record at 18.653/70.03. K. White set both ends of the I Class Competiton motorcycle record at 23.679/49.50. (Bill Dossett)  Rain in the morning made sure that qualifying times were sub-standard, but the sun began to dry out the strip after lunch. Dave Collis escaped unhurt after his Chevy powered Opus One Altered aquaplaned off the track. The car suffered a badly bent front end. Dennis Priddle (I think?) put in some promising runs in the new John Woolfe Racing Whistler, a fibreglass Reliant GTE with the 427ci L88 Chevrolet V8 that had previously seen service in the teams Hustler Altered. Tony Anderson, a newcomer to racing in his V6 Ford powered rail 'Trouble', put in some consistent low twelve second runs before beating Alan Blounts Weekend Warrior 3 in the final, 12.44/110 to 13.01/105.60. Rob Skinner took the Top Competition final in Midas Touch when the Whistler lost fire on the line.

For all class winners click here. (Steve Collins)

May 4th

SPR. Spring Match Race. Tony Densham in the Commuter set a new E.T. record for a class A Dragster. With a 25% nitro load, and 8psi in the slicks, he stopped the clocks at 8.228/181.82, his chute then failed and, whilst pulling hard on the brake to get the car stopped, the chassis flexed so much that it bottomed out and holed the sump, putting the car out of action for the remainder of the meeting. At the close of qualifying only Top Street had a full field of eight cars, but two of those never made it to the eliminations after breakages. Dave Render, in his V8 powered Ginetta Buick, took a first round win against Cliff Jones before getting a bye to the final round. There he met the 440ci Dodge Charger of Doug Harler. Harler left too early, his red light leaving Render to take a 13.39/99.80 win. Harold Bull won the Top Dragster final, beating John Siggery in 'Geronimo'. Bull and Siggery both recorded times of 10.89, the quickest of the day after Commuter, but King Harold's holeshot was evident as his 126.58mph terminal speed was slower than Siggery's 133.87.   In Top Competition Altered Dennis Priddle took the win in the Mark Stratton built 'Whistler', sponsored by John Woolfe Racing. A string of consistent low eleven second passes saw him reach the final, where an 11.36/109.83 was more than good enough to defeat Derek Benbow's 12.47/114.68 from his Buick T. Tony Anderson repeated his success of the previous week with a 12.32/110.86 win over a 12.45/109.41 from Bert Knight's Jaguar powered Knightmare in Middle Dragster.

R. Knight set a new speed record for a class C Dragster with a 110.01mph run in his Jaguar powered machine. In Competition Altered N. Johnstone set new E.T.and speed records in the G/CA class at 17.137/75.93. D Render set new E.T. and speed records in Street Altered C class at 13.145/102.15. (Bill Dossett) To see all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

May 24th-26th

SPR. BDR&HRA Big Go. Europe's first three day meeting.  

R. Knight set a new class C dragster E.T. record of 12.369 in his Jaguar powered rail. M. Wheeler set a new G class dragster ET record  in his Rootes powered machine of 12.368. New E.T. and speed records were set in the Competition Altered E class by D. Florent in his Ford. M. Kent took his Chevrolet to new CC Street Altered E.T. and speed records of 13.999/103.74. P. Smith set a new D class Street Altered E.T. record of 14.560 in his Daimler. C. Watts set a new F class Sports Production E.T. record of 19.351. In Super Stock Production F class Mrs C. Skilton set a new E.T. record of 17.914. Bill Weichelt set both ends of the CC class Production record in his Ford at 14.929/93.28. (Bill Dossett)

 Dennis Priddle won Top Competition Altered in the Whistler Reliant GT/E at 11.35/122 (Simon Groves)

Racing on the Saturday was curtailed by rain, the first time this had happened in the history of the event. Sunday saw the running of the handicapped division eliminations whilst the major eliminations were run on Monday. Two major competitors were sidelined early on. Harold Bull broke a con rod which wrecked Stripdusters engine, and Allan Herridge suffered a similar fate with the Glacier Bearing Special when his oil pump drive broke. In fact due to breakages the Top Eliminator field was reduced to just three cars. Kevin Burrows debuted his Malibu Express Chevrolet powered slingshot with a best time of 15.25/72.57. The Top Eliminator final went to John Siggery's Geronimo with a 10.397/120.77 win over an 11.068 from Ken Coopers Flathead powered Bazooka Two. Cooper had also finished as runner up the previous day with an 11.073/124.07 to a 12.71/106.04 from Mick Wheelers Scorpion. Rookie Doug Florent in his 1650cc Anglia won the handicapped Altered Eliminator and reset both ends of the Class E record at 16.40s and 82.60mph. An eliminator was held for 14 attending members of the XK Jaguar Owners Club. David Harris was the winner with a 14.576/98.04 from his Lister Jaguar. He also qualified for Top Street and was runner up in Sundays Modified Sports Eliminator. 38 Motorcycles were in attendance. Alf Hagon, resplendent in a new set of white leathers, put in three nine second runs, with a best of 9.55/151 from his blown JAP bike. His seven year old son Martin put in a 33 second pass on a specially built junior Hagon Drag Bike. This was, I think, Alf's last appearance at Santa Pod before announcing his retirement from competition. Bernard White took his 650cc nitro Triumph Endeavour to the Top Bike Eliminator final win, first beating a red lighting John Lloyd, on his Romulus Vincent, before defeating John Hobbs Olympus Triumph in the final. The close final was won on the line as White's 107.8mph terminal speed was eclipsed by Hobbs 124.5. Dennis Norman had his twin engined Triumph blower manifold explode on the start line. Don East, on his 650 Triumph, won the Middle Bike Eliminator having run a 10.60s on the Sunday, quicker than most of the machines in the Top Bike ranks.

For all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

June 1st SPR. BDR&HRA Club Meet. D. Formhals drove his Fiat to a new E.T. record of 25.686 in the Modified Production H Class. C. Jones set both ends of the Super Stock Production record at 17.011/78.61 in his Sunbeam.(Bill Dossett)
June 2nd-7th St. Helier, Jersey. The BDR&HRA, in association with the Channel Islands Autosport Club, held the "Drag Racing '69" show at St. Heliers Springfield Ballroom. Among the car exhibits were the FGR Stingray, 'The Commuter', Tony Andersons 'Trouble', Allan Herridges 'Motovation', Dave Collis' 'Opus One', Colin Mullans 'Invader', Harold Bulls 'Stripduster', Colin Kettleys 'Hemini', John Siggerys 'Geronimo', Mark Strattons 'Whistler', the Benbow & Fullerton 'T' Altered, Patrick & Chris Churchs 'Gold Rush' Pop and the Adams brothers designed 'Probe 15'. Two wheeled exhibits included Alf Hagons JAP, Les Turners 'Soopa Doopa' Triumph and the 'Warbird' Vincent of Robin Ditcher.
June 14th John Woolfe of John Woolfe Racing lost his life during the first lap of the Le Mans 24 hour race. He was driving his new 4.5 litre Porsche 917.
June 14th/15th

SPR. Spring Nationals. John Hobbs set new E class solo competition motorcycle records for E.T. and speed with a 10.402/135.87 run on his 'Olympus' Triumph. R. Perkins set new records for F Class Street Solo motorcycle at 18.223/66.40. R. Fielding set a new speed record for the F Class Competition Altered at 74.57mph. D. Cottingham set new E.T. and speed records for C Class Modified Sports Production at 14.097/103.52 in his Jaguar. J. Robinson set new E.T. and speed records for G Class Modified Production at 17.016/77.16 and Bill Weichelt set new CC Class E.T. and speed records at 21.256/61.88. In Super Stock Production Mrs C. Skilton set both ends of the C Class record at 17.533/73.21.(Bill Dossett

 At this somewhat low-key event the top speed and low ET of the weekend went to John Siggery with a 9.897s and 141.84mph in his injected Oldsmobile powered Geronimo which bettered Allan Herridge's previous class record. Siggery took the Top Dragster final with a 10.05/139.08 to an 11.28/121.21 from the Flathead powered Bazooka Too of Ken Cooper. Cooper had travelled home during the meeting to collect gearbox spares before rebuilding the transmission in time for qualifying. His runner up place was his third in four meetings. Siggery's victory was his third in four meetings. Making a return to the strip was Ian Richardson with his 1969 Small Block Cobra. Richardson had previously run on two wheels with his Moonraker motorcycle. Running in Top Street he took the final win against Bill Weichelt after a semi final bye and a round one defeat of Dave Cottingham who red lit. The competitors who came closest to Siggery's marks were both on two wheels. John Lloyd clocked 136.80mph on Romulus and Bernard White stopped the clocks at 10.43s on Endevour. White put in two consecutive ten second runs to take the Top Motorcycle Eliminator. He defeated red lighting Chris Bartrum's blown 500cc Norton, John Lloyd's blown Vincent Romulus and, in the final, John Hobbs blown 500cc Triumph. Hobbs went on to reset both ends of the E Class motorcycle record.  In Middle Motorcycle Philip Eeles, on his nitro burning Hagon Triumph, had a first round bye before defeating the blown 650cc Triumph Centaurus of Stuart Bently in the final. Junior Motorcycle went to the 250cc Yamaha Starmaker of Des Heckle. He ran 13.1 to defeat John Bridges Hog Rod, 12.7 against the 500cc JAP of Roger Barnes and a 12.58 in the final against Brian Chapman's 500cc Vincent. Neville Barham made a return with his 1260cc JAP Polyphemus and put in some low eleven and high ten second runs.

On the Sunday a two minute silence was observed for John Woolfe who had died at Le Mans the previous afternoon.

The official entry numbers were 50 cars and 30 motorcycles.

For all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

June 22nd SPR. Club Meeting.
July 5th/6th

SPR. Summer Spectacular. John Siggery ran 9.99/140mph in "Geronimo" to defeat Allan Herridge in the Glacier Bearing Special Dragster.(Simon Groves)

For all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

July 20th SPR. "On Tour" Meeting. (Advertised but did not take place)
July 26th/27th Scandinavian Raceway, Anderstorp, Sweden. The Second Annual Anderstorp Trip saw six UK cars make the trip along with four bikes. They were John Siggery in Geronimo, Allan Herridge in Motovation, Harold Bull in Stripduster, Dennis Priddle in the Whistler and the fuelers of Tony Densham and Clive Skilton (debuting the new look Allard/Skilton rail with top mounted blower and white paint job) while the bike racers included Ian Messenger, Dennis Norman, Ray Baskerville and possibly one other. Both the Whistler and Commuter had clutch problems initially while Herridge put a rod through the side of his block and was out of competition. Harold Bull pulled a huge wheelie in Stripduster and ran a time of 10.6 seconds. Siggery ran 9.99/146 followed by 9.87/142 in Geronimo. With five of the UK cars left running Harold Bull blew his clutch apart to make the total four. A round robin competition was then organised. Densham beat Geronimo, the losing E.T. being 9.98/133.51. Geronimo then beat a blown swedish gasser with a winning time of 9.86/139.72. Siggery then ran his best time of the meeting, a 9.6 in losing to Clive Skilton. Densham holed the block on the Commuter. The final saw Skilton take the win to a Geronimo time of 10.19/113.02. Skilton won 3/3, Densham 2/3 and Siggery 1/3. (Mick Tickner)
July 27th

SPR. BDR&HRA Club Meet.

For all class winners click here. (Steve Collins)

August 2nd/3rd

SPR. All Stars Meeting. S. Perry set a new A Class Competition Solo Motorcycle speed record of 106.38mph on his Ford powered machine. R. Fielding set a new F Class ET record in Competition Altered at 16.893. B. Wareham set both ends of the E Class Sports Production record at 15.734/86.73 in his Lotus. K. Giffen set both ends of the B Modified class record at 13.847/101.83. (Bill Dossett)

In a three car field John Siggery in Geronimo qualified at number one in Top Dragster with a 10.34. Second was Ken Cooper's Flathead powered Bazooka II at 10.96. Bruce Brown was third with an 11.49 from his first outing in the rebuilt ex-Allan Herridge Pulsation rail, now powered by a 5.3 litre Chevrolet and known as Prospector II. Brown defeated Cooper but it was Siggery who took the final win with a 10.11/120.05. Dennis Priddle continued his success in Top Competiton, taking the Whistler Altered to an 11.31/111.61 final win. A disappointing turnout in the lower Street classes saw only three qualifiers in Middle and none at all in Junior. In Middle it was Ken Obee who took the final win in his 1650cc Lotus Ford. He defeated Alan Ward's V6 Escort Otis Blue in the first round and U.S. Airforce man Bernard Wareham's 1600cc Lotus Elan in a close final, 15.384/86.13 to 15.648/85.47. In Top Motorcycle John Lloyd on Romulus qualified at number one followed by Bernard White at number two. In the first round White defeated the blown 650 Triumph of Don East while Lloyd took a bye. John Hobbs red lit on Olympus against Dave Clee's Shot Gun blown 650 Triumph. Clee then went on to red light himself in the next round allowing Lloyd through to the final while it was now White's turn for a bye. In the final a holeshot from Lloyd saw him take the win with a 10.603/136.99 to a quicker 10.581/134.23. Middle Motorcycle saw six qualifiers, all of whom ran below twelve seconds. First round winners were Pete Millar, who went through despite red lighting as opponent Ron Williams failed to make the call, Ray Feltall, who beat Chris Bartrum, and Phil Eeles, who beat Phil Green. The final was between Feltall and Eeles, both riding nitro powered 650 Triumphs. Feltall took the honours with an 11.4/116 to a 12.2/111. There were only two qualifiers in Junior Motorcycle. Ron May took the win on his 350cc blown Triumph with an 11.92/114.29 to a 14.144/91.53 from John Bridges' Hog Rod 650 Triumph. Roy Phelps was putting in passes in the Wheelie Stingray and finally managed a full quarter mile pass on the rear wheels. An earlier attempt had looked promising but Phelps had come off the throttle before the finish line as he was worried he was going to hit the timing lights.After the eliminations finished a handicapped division eliminator was held.

For all class results click here. (Steve Collins)

August 16th/17th

Woodvale. BDR&HRA "On Tour" Meeting. A low turnout of 38 competitors and a low turnout of spectators on the first day was reported. Qualifying on the Saturday started later than expected as setting up took longer than planned. In the Dragster ranks Clive Skilton led the way with a 9.4 from the Allard Chrysler Revolution. John Siggery was next with a 9.8. Graham Croucher in Malibu Express ran some low eleven second passes and Harold Bull, with oiled tyres, put in some ten second runs. The Competiton Altereds completed their qualifying with Dennis Priddle in The Whistler at 11.2, Ed Gurney in Hush Too at 11.7, Fred Whittle in Shutdown (No time reported), Robin Skinner's Midas Touch at 12.2, Derek Benbow's turtle T at 12.5, Ian Garbutt's High Fever at 12.7 and Phil Elson's Lil-Daf at 13.4. Bill Jaynes managed to get ten runs in, most of which were alongside the Otis Blue escort of Alan Ward, with a best of 13.8. In the bike classes Ian Messenger put in a couple of tyre-smoking ten second runs, Mick Warne's Little Red Riding Rod ran a couple of low twelves among his half a dozen attempts, and Neville Barham ran a middle eleven second pass on his 500cc JAP. Dennis Norman struggled to break eleven seconds while Dennis Allen broke his gearbox on his first outing. A much larger crowd turned up for racing on the Sunday. Pete Atkins, who had been absent the previous day, put in a 12.2 qualifier to secure his place in the Comp Altered eliminator. Clive Skilton put in a solo run in Walt Ithel's twin-engined Aggrevation resulting in a 10.03 with a dragging clutch. John Siggery ran an easy 10.7 in his Oldsmobile powered rail to defeat Malibu Express. The final looked to be a certainty for Skilton, but he bogged off the line and Siggery took full advantage, taking the win with a 9.789 to a 10.105. In Middle Dragster Harold Bull led the way, Bryan Smith's 350cc Baby Blue defeated Chris Leaney, and Brian parkins took his Keele Kart to a victory over Keith Elliot's Red Witch. In the second round Bull soloed to a 10.7 and Parkins defeated Smith. Parkins inevitably took runner up spot with a valiant 13.08 against an 11.013 from Bull's Stripduster. Top Comp saw Dennis Priddle run 11.1 to defeat Ian Garbutt at 13.3. Fred Whittle beat Pete Atkins with a holeshot, 12.8 to 12.5. Derek Benbow ran 13.06 which was no match for an 11.7 from Ed Gurney. Robin Skinner had a broken cluch cable on Midas Touch, letting Phil Elson through to the next round. Priddle continued on into the final by beating Whittle with an 11.4 and Gurney defeated Elson. In the final it was Gurney who took the win. His slower 11.67 taking the honours as Priddle bogged off the line and chased hard to no avail with an 11.56. Junior Comp had two entries. Dick Fielding's Imagination and newcomer Jim Macklin. A best of three was run but this was reported to have been a draw (?). The two drivers offered to run two more rounds but unfortunately both broke. Bill Jaynes led qualifying in Top Street with his 13.8. Michael Derry was second with Kay-Otik at 14.4, followed by Alan Ward and Bill Weichelt both at 15.3. Jess Ruyg's Mortician was next with a 17.8 and finally Stuart Lee with a 17.6 from his Chevy Nova. In the first round Derry beat Ruyg, Weichely beat Ward and Jaynes beat Lee. Weichelt's Charger continued on to defeat Derry, both cars running 15.3. Jaynes meanwhile took the bye and put in a 13.9 for his place in the final. His luck continued with a 13.9 defeat of Weichelt's 15.07. Top Bike was back up to four entries after Dennis Allen rebuilt his gearbox with borrowed parts and put in a 10.8. In the first round Neville Barham with his Polyphemus JAP took an 11.4 victory over an 11.3 from Dennis Norman. Ian Messengers 998cc Vincent ran 10.8 to defeat a 10.9 from Dennis Allen's 750 Triumph. Messenger went on to take the final with a 10.9 over a Barham's 11.5. Middle Bike qualifying stood at Mick Warne 12.1, Ray Baskerville 13.0, Roger Barnes 13.3, while the Whitelake Honda of Michael Ford suffered numerous problems and didn't manage to get a run in. Barnes had a bye in the first round while Warne's 650 Triumph defeated Baskerville's 650 BSA. In the final it was Warnes who took the honours with a 13.03 to a 13.68 from Barnes.

August  31st-September 1st

SPR. British Drag Racing Championships. Entry List One Entry List Two.  Phil Kersey set both ends of the J Class Competiton Solo Motorcycle record at 19.97/62.70 on a Suzuki. (Bill Dossett)

For all class results click here.

September 28th

Hullavington. Entry List One Entry List Two. The BDR&HRA organised another On Tour meeting, their first at this Wiltshire venue. There were 56 car entries and 14 bike entries and all were affected by the strong, gusting winds. Clive Skilton in the Allard/Skilton rail couldn’t qualify due to oil problems. John Harrison in his Austin Healey powered dragster had a collision with the start line mobile tower which resulted in a badly dented front end.

For all class results click here. (Clive Rooms)

October 5th SPR. World Records Preview All Stars Meet. John Siggery set a new B class dragster et and speed records in his Oldsmobile powered Geronimo slingshot, running 9.844/147.93, In the Modified Sports Production class M. Pearson set new et and speed records in the D class at 16.488/83.19. In Competition Scooter G class, B. White took his Lambretta to new et and speed records of 16.986/72.2 and in the Street Solo Motorcycle C class R. Elgar set new et and speed records at 12.484/106.16 on his Vincent.(Bill Dossett)
October 18th/19th Elvington. The 5th Annual World Records Weekend.
The National Drag Racers Club was formed in October, first as a sub-division of of the BDR&HRA called the Drag Control and Timing Association and then as an offshoot of its own.It ran meetings over the next few years at a variety of venues such as Blackbushe, Radlett, Martlesham, Silverstone, Fulbeck, Wroughton and Snetterton.
December 7th SPR. BDR&HRA Club Meet. CANCELLED
At the end of this year Alf Hagon decided to retire entirely from racing, after a string of 28 consecutive drag racing and sprint victories, and concentrate on his thriving buisness. The famous bike was sold to an Australian promoter having run a best of 9.208/157. It would be 1974 before anyone beat this mark.

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