Reigning FIA champion Sandro Bellio ready for title defence
Sandro Bellio was the 2019 FIA European Top Methanol champion, and as a result of the 2-year coronavirus break, he is still the reigning champion. But that’s not enough for the young Belgian driver as he wants to add another championship with a title in 2022.
In 2017 Sandro Bellio took over the driving duties of the family run Danny’s Racing Team Top Methanol Funny Car. Sandro immediately impressed with quick runs and race wins, and after finishing 4th and 3rd in the FIA European Top Methanol Championship in 2017 and 2018 respectively, 2019 was his season. With three wins, one runner-up position and two semi-final finishes, Bellio claimed the title, the first FIA European Championship in drag racing for a Belgian driver.
The dedicated team were ready for the title defence in 2020, when the coronavirus suddenly stopped all the action and the FIA European Drag Racing Championship was cancelled. After a 2-year break, the most prestigious drag racing championship in Europe is back, and so are Sandro Bellio and Danny’s Racing Team.
“Our plan for this year was to do the Main Event, the two Tierp events and Hockenheim, and then oversee the situation in the championship if we would also go to the Euro Finals. It was a very unpleasant, and for us unexpected surprise, that the FIA part of the June event at Tierp Arena was cancelled. The problems for several teams to travel to England doesn’t make it easier for the championship. But we will definitely be at Santa Pod to start our title defence,” said Sandro. And we all know that when the Bellios enter a race, there is only one goal, the win and at the end of the season the title.
Without drag racing, the Bellios spent even more hours than they already did before in the family run garage and shop Danny Cars, and Dyno Unlimited, their testing facility for engines, both situated in Houthalen, Belgium. They didn’t have to do too much to the Danny’s Racing Team Chevrolet Monte Carlo, as it was the quickest and fastest Funny Car in the Top Methanol field when the championship came to a sudden stop. “We will run the same concept and set-up. We updated and refreshed a few technical parts and we had to update a safety issue. The space between the upper part of the roll cage and my helmet was too small, so we changed and lowered the seat position,” explained Sandro regarding the minor changes to the car.
As expected in the family run team, there are no changes in the championship winning crew and the team can rely on the support of their partners and sponsors, Danny Cars, Dyno Unlimited, EVChargeKing, Molinari clutches and Reid rockers.
“We are really looking forward to start racing again and meet the fans at the track. It has been far too long ago,” were Sandro’s final words before he went back to work in the garage.
Text: Remco Scheelings