Antti Horto, Jan Ericsson, Sandro Bellio and Jimmy Ålund clinch the 2022 FIA European Drag Racing Championship titles at Santa Pod
Antti Horto (Top Fuel), Sandro Bellio (Top Methanol), Jan Ericsson (Pro Modified) and Jimmy Ålund (Pro Stock) claimed the 2022 FIA European Drag Racing Championship titles in their respective category at the European Finals at Santa Pod Raceway. Bellio and Ericsson won their titles in style by claiming the victory in the final round of the 2022 FIA European Drag Racing Championship as well. Horto and Ålund also advanced to the final, but in Top Fuel Susanne Callin claimed the win, while in Pro Stock Michael Malmgren proved his great form of the weekend by defeating the 12-time Pro Stock champion.
It was a long day of racing at Santa Pod Raceway during the eliminations of the fourth and final round of the FIA European Drag Racing Championship. But it was worth waiting as the championship in Top Methanol was decided in the final at 7.30 pm.
In Top Fuel the championship was decided in the semi-finals as Antti Horto only had to start the run to clinch the title. The Finn made a half pass with an ET of 4.92 seconds. With Horto as the champion, the title remains in Finland as Anita Mäkelä is the outgoing champion in the fastest and quickest category of drag racing.
In the other semi-final Susanne Callin defeated Ida Zetterström. The rookie Top Fuel driver who was the championship leader at the halfway point of the season went up in smoke at the start line for the third consecutive time this weekend. A race weekend to forget for Zetterström.
In the final Callin stormed to a great 3.88 seconds at 309 mph to defeat Horto, who lost traction after the start and crossed the finish line in 4.14 seconds. For Callin it was her second consecutive victory as she also claimed the win at the NitrOlympX at Hockenheim, two weeks ago. In the championship Callin finished second, with Zetterström third.
In Pro Modified reigning champion Jan Ericsson had to win his quarter final run to claim his second consecutive title. In qualifying the Swede was already in a class of his own, and he was that in eliminations as well. After a bye run in the first round, Ericsson defeated Bruno Bader to claim the title. But even if he had not won, the title would have gone to Ericsson as all his pursuers were eliminated in the first or second round. Andres Arnover, the number two in the title race, ran into problems and was defeated by Andy Robinson, while David Vegter was defeated in the quarter finals and Michel Tooren and Marck Harteveld in the first round. In the semi-final Ericsson defeated Kev Slyfield in 5.80 seconds, his best run of the day.
On the other side of the ladder Bobby Wallace, the number three qualifier, defeated Jon Webster, Robinson and Freddy Fagerström to advance to the final.
In the final Ericsson once again proved his great form to claim the win in 5.81 seconds, his fourth 5.8-second run of the day and sixth of the weekend. In the championship Vegter finished in second position, with Arnover third.
In Top Methanol the final between reigning champion Sandro Bellio and Jonny Lagg had to decide about the championship. On their way to the final Bellio defeated Silvio Strauch and had a bye run in the semi-finals.
Lagg was too quick for Linn Fløysvik and Daniel Jedborn and as the difference in points was less than 20, the winner of the final would also claim the 2022 title.
Bellio was away first and stormed to a great 5.51 seconds to defeat Lagg (5.67 seconds) to claim the race win and the 2022 FIA European Top Methanol title. Thus the title will remain in Belgium for another year.
In Pro Stock the championship was decided in the semi-finals. Jimmy Ålund had to win his run to claim the title. The Swede recorded 6.63 seconds to defeat Stefan Ernryd and won his 12th (!) FIA European Pro Stock title.
In the final Ålund had to face Michael Malmgren, who was the fastest driver all weekend and still in the championship race until the semi-final win of his countryman. In an exciting final Malmgren had the better reaction time and defeated the just crowned champion with 6.615 over 6.618 seconds.
For live reports and detailed results see eurodragster.com: http://www.eurodragstereventcoverage.com/santapod/live/2022fiaeuropeanfinals/default.asp