Racers had to adjust to the changing weather conditions over the Spring Bank holiday weekend. Saturday was dry and warm. On Sunday there was light rain and a headwind and the temperature had dropped, very cold. Race day was mostly over casted.
Top Fuel Bike.
Festival of Power winner Steve Woollatt was the number one qualifier 6.440-167.37 and had a clutch explosion on the next pass, resulting in a lot of damaged parts, which the team replaced and repaired the piston on the air clutch. Neil Midgley had done some modifications to the seat and foot pegs to help him feel more comfortable and ran 6.857-136.05. Al Smith were testing the spare cylinder head at this meeting. But had some issues with the auxiliary belts 11.066. Shawn Rodman the 2008 NAST
Fuel Champion made he debut on his new Al Smith constructed and built V Twin. Rodman last competed in 2011 and Saturday the team were sorting out a few teething issues and managed to get a check out pass on Sunday.
Woollatt had a bye in the semis to check the clutch repair 10.618. Smith smoked the tyre off the start line against Midgley who ran 5.920-199.75 (low et and top speed of the meet). Woollatt had traction problem off the start line, while Midgley took the win 6.779.
There was a small field at the event. Louis Davies qualify number one 7.109-179.96 with a personal best 60ft of 1.04. But at the end of his last qualifier the fuel solenoids stayed open at the shutdown area. Dave Peters weekend did not start well, nitrous and ignition issues. But after changing the ignition system ran 7.596-179.93. Just edging Roger Moore personal best figures of 7.596-173.72.
Davies fitted bigger jets for the eliminations, resulting with figures of 7.038-182.88 on his bye run to the final. Moore put a holeshot over Peters rt287 to397 but Peters stormed down the track to win 7.362-175.75 to Moore 7.641-170.45. Davies got out the gate first rt132 against Peters rt200 in the final only to reach the 1000 ft mark with smoke coming from the engine. Peters powered around with his best run of the weekend 7.319-188.07.
Shawn Buttigieg dominated Comp Bike setting a new ACU ET record in qualifying 6.745 at a speed of 210.15. Graham Dance is enjoying his time in Comp Bike and had a spare cylinder head for this event and ran 7.415-198.96. Chris Neary has fitted a mechanical fuel pump and ran 7.710 with a p/b speed of 187.29 followed by Mick Winyard 7.928-178.54. Len Paget was competing on his Super Street Bike and ran his first seven-second 7.982-182.14. Jordan Kenway has a new billet clutch basket and another fuel pump and had an electrical issue in qualifying 8.120-166.68. John McLean Sr was on his stunning bike and had wheelie issues during qualifying 8.285-162.47. Leo Lester ran 8.314 with p/b speed of 177.15 but damaged his motor and was out of the show. Dave Thomas sorted his Easter meeting problem (two step) and ran 8.501-164.87 and was first alternate.
Buttigieg beat Thomas. It was a bizarre race with Winyard going before the x tree activated and Paget hitting the finishing blocks. The decision went to Paget. Dance beat McLean 7.829 to 8.799. In the repeat of the Festival of Power final Neary 8.091 beat Kenway 8.263 with a p/b of 167.94.
Buttigieg had a bye in the semi-final, Paget a no show and ran a jaw dropping 6.645-219.06 p/b. Dance ran his best of the weekend 7.391-200.66 against Neary 8.102-177.83. Dance had a bad oil leak and did not make the final. Buttigieg won his first ACU event and reset his ACU ET record with 6.734 at 198.00 and had a transmission shift problem (third to fifth) on that run.
Super Street Bike.
Steve Venables fitted his old wastegate for this event and ran 6.952-214.94 for number one spot. Another rider fitting an old set up was Alan Morrison Jr in the hope of curing a handling problem 7.015-206.12. During qualifying Morrison Jr frame had a hairline crack and after borrowing Jake Mechaell welder Mick Winyard welded the frame. Talking of Jake Mechaell he had a weekend to remember. During qualifying an injector failed and damaged the cylinder head, so he pulled the engine out at 1pm (Saturday) and went to his workshop and built up another cylinder head and returned to the pits and fitted the engine finishing 5.00am (Sunday) and then ran 7.082-202.35. In fourth spot was Mark Hope 7.226-200.57. Ross Morrison had an intermittent electrical problem and also a fuel issue 7.294-182.14. Mark Dainty had a new frame, but still had the mid-track wheelie problem and damaged the front wheel. Before the event he sold a wheel to Jake Mechaell and got the wheel back to compete. But needed new spacers making, so Mechaell made some spacers while he was repairing his own motor (weekend to remember). Dainty qualify 7.297-194.60. Margot Schmidt was the final competitor and was looking for a baseline 8.206-168.54.
Venables had a bye and stunned the crowd 6.871-216.96. There was a great race up next, Hope put a holeshot rt047 to 109 over Ross Morrison and held on to a holeshot win 7.148 p/b and 7.106 p/b. Morrison Jr beat Schmidt 7.842 to 8.290. Mechaell got out the gate first against Dainty and took the win light 7.002-204.27 to Dainty 7.150 with a personal best speed of 206.27. First semi-final and Hope ran another p/b 7.140, but Venables had too much with 6.834-216.99 (low et of the meet). Morrison Jr drifted to the centre line at 300ft mark and could only watch Mechaell run personal best figures of 6.871-209.97. The final was the best race of the day which saw the quickest side by side run in Super Street Bike. Mechaell beat Venables by 4/100th at the line 6.872-205.34 to 6.873-218.03.
Report by Steven Moxley.