Santa Pod Dragstalgia 10 July
I was invited by Osteveo couple of days before to Ride down for this event. Having kind of committed to the 18th I wasn’t that interested at first but after about 2 hours thinking time thought why not.
So, we decided Sunday suited us both best and I got everything ready for the ride. Unfortunately it was a day for failed tech for me, I’d foolishly just updated the maps on my sat nav which rendered it stuck in Demo mode. My handlebar camera (I found out later on my return) had a knackered memory card in it so no footage of the actual ride. Damn tech.
Anyway, I set off late (trying to get the FFFFFin’ sat nav working) but made up loads of time on the A38/M1 to get to Junction 18 (Crick) which would allow us to ride the A428 to Santa Pod. Got to the meet place just as Steve arrived had a quich catch up & away we went. Luckily, Steve had his phone linked to his headset and being on his CR took us on a rapid ride through the lanes with some excellent views & very little traffic, we seemed to reach Santa Pod very quickly not because of the speed or anything, it just seemd a very quick route, even Steve commented on this.
I’ve got to say, Santa Pod was heaving, the camping area was stuffed and we had to thread our bikes through throngs of people, it was more of a family day with stalls and lots of vintage drag cars & bikes both for show & competing. The vibe was as always freindly & after having a quick scout round the stalls, I had spied one of my all time favourites, The wall of death, no way I missing the opportunity to watch this again (last time was 12 years hence at The Cromford steam rally). This show is thrilling for a mere £3.00 & a voluntary donation afterwards towards their injury costs as they can’t get insurance obviously.
We had a tour round the vehicles & tents housing classic racers then went & parked our asses on the rock hard verge on the far side of the track. Earplugs would’ve been handy as some of the cars were FFFFin’ ear ringing, I could feel damage occurring. We witnessed some outrageous times ie 6.2 seconds for the ¼ mile which was faster than the jet engined vehicle that went up the track twice & was fairly unimpressive compared to some of the cars. It was impressive warming up though blasting flames under the gantry.
The day was getting hotter as was the competion, some poor guy got himself trapped between his bike & the concrete barriers which did nothing to inspire me to have another go, it didn’t look like much but concrete doesn’t give and he didn’t get up & was stretchered away. We took off for something eat as it put a stop to the event for a while. Luckily it was reported that he was ok but in hospital for Xrays.
After sitting in the shade scoffing noodles & drinking slushies, (god they worked well for keeping the temp down), it was by this time uncomfotably hot. We had another walk round the vehicle tents, surprisingly few bikers there (on their bikes) probably only 10 or so parked where we were.
I think it was at this point, the racing had started again, I was drinking gallons of tea hiding in the shade, when we heard an almighty screech & bang that shook where we stood, sounded like someone had gone sideways & smashed into the barriers in a car, which again put an end to proceedings for a while (and completely killed any enthusiasm I was harbouring about having another go).
Heartfelt respect here to Gus here, drag racing is a really dangerous sport if the slightest thing goes wrong. Hat’s of to you Gus, you’re a goddamn hero & deserve some serious acknowledgement for your continued efforts and very quick times.
Anyway, we eventually walked down to the end of the track to watch the Semi’s and final. It’s pretty cool watching the starts but something else to watch the top speed finishes especially on these astonishingly quick races. The loudest thunder you’ve ever heard in your lives does not compare to the sound these things make at full belt, it is unbelievable.
Got to say, all in all, a really splendid day out & great riding the lanes with Steve again. Thanks for the invite buddy, hopefully we’ll get out again soon.
Ride Safe & Stay between the hedgerows.