MSA British Drag Racing Championship

Round One race report

 

April 19-21st 2003

 

The opening salvoes in the 2003 MSA British Drag Racing Championship have been fired. Four teams braved the elements to compete at Santa Pod Raceway over the Easter weekend, bringing state of the art drag racing technology into play.

 

A cold track made it tricky to transfer the 3000 bhp that a Top Methanol car produces to the ground, with all teams suffering from tyreshake at some point, some more than others Steph Milam getting right out of shape in her semi-final showing against Turner.

 

Dave Wilson unveiled his new Brad Hadman chassis, as used by the best teams in the USA, and immediately clicked off a 5.71 second pass in the American Car Imports dragster. He improved on that with a 5.66 to take number one qualifier. Seven times MSA champion Rob Turner responded with a 5.95 and 5.68 for number two position in the Netcall Telecom dragster and Steph Milam set a new personal best of 6.67 for number 3 spot in her Proseal/Goodridge sponsored Funny Car.

 

Doug Ripley very nearly missed out on round one because he had the wrong fire suppression system in his CC Racing Funny Car and failed initial scrutineering. Never one to give up, he was able to persuade someone to open their factory on a Bank Holiday, drive there, refurbish the system, drive back and fit it to the car and pass inspection in time for the last day of qualifying. The reduced number of qualifying passes available resulted in his last place on the ladder.

 

The first semi-final saw Wilson comfortably take out Ripley with a 5.636, 251 mph to a 7.983 pass. The other side of the ladder was more dramatic with Steph Milam getting wildly out of shape just after the Xmas tree and wisely shutting the Funny Car down, leaving Rob Turner to motor through with a 5.638 at 230 mph

 

The final gave lane choice to Wilson by just 2 thousandths of a second, but when the green came on it was Turner away first, his holeshot keeping him in front all the way to the finish line for a victory 5.656 at 238 mph vs 5.708 at 245 mph, in the Round One final.

 

Qualifying

 

Pos Name Time Speed

 

1 Dave Wilson 5.665, 253.638

2 Rob Turner 5.688, 247.327

3 Steph Milam 6.673, 213.456

4 Doug Ripley 11.113, 115.585

 

Eliminations

 

L Dave Wilson 5.636, 251 mph - Winner

R Doug Ripley 7.983, 142 mph

 

R Dave Wilson 5.708, 245 mph

L Rob Turner 5.656, 238 mph - Winner

 

R Rob Turner 5.638, 230 mph - Winner

L Steph Milam shut down

 

 

Points standings after Round One

 

1

Rob Turner

117

2

Dave Wilson

98

3

Stephanie Milam

76

4

Doug Ripley

75