Rain brings early end to The Main Event at Santa Pod Raceway

Rain brought an early end to the eliminations of The Main Event, round one of the FIA European Drag Racing Championship at Santa Pod Raceway. After a rain delay in the morning, the FIA classes Top Fuel, Top Methanol and Pro Stock had completed their first round of eliminations, and Pro Modified their second round, when the rain came back several times. Although the Santa Pod Raceway crew did their very best to dry the track, it was impossible to start racing again.

The weather was not with the racers and spectators on the Monday, eliminations day of The Main Event at Santa Pod Raceway, round one of the FIA European Drag Racing Championship. Numerous showers during the day caused many delays and when the rain came back later in the afternoon, the race director was left no other choice then to cancel the remaining elimination rounds.

In Top Fuel number one qualifier Jndia Erbacher from Switzerland had a bye run in the semi-final to advance to the final. In the other semi-final Duncan Micallef had a bye run as well as number two qualifier Susanne Callin suffered so much engine damage on her last qualifying run on Sunday, that the Swedish driver had to withdraw from eliminations. Due to the rain it was not possible to run the final.

In the first round of eliminations of Pro Modified David Vegter once again proved his great form. The number one qualifier from The Netherlands stormed to a great 5.76 seconds, by far the quickest elapsed time of all elimination runs. In the quarter final Vegter had to face Andres Arnover from Estonia.

At the start line Vegter was triggered by Arnover’s stage light and pulled a red light, handing the win and semi-final position to Arnover.

Bruno Bader, the number four qualifier from Switzerland, also advanced to the semi-finals after defeating Bobby Wallace in the quarter finals. Jere Rantaniemi, the number three qualifier from Finland, advanced to the quarter finals but was there defeated by Stian Rusånes, who recorded a great 6.05 seconds to secure, to his own surprise, a place in the semi-finals.

Another major surprise was Andreas Sjodin. The driver from Sweden and number ten qualifier defeated Peter Kunc in the first round and saw Andy Robinson pull a red light in the quarter finals to advance to the semi-finals. In the semi-finals Bader would have met Arnover and Sjodin Rusånes. We will never know who would have been the finalists.

In Top Methanol the number one qualifier, Tony Bryntesson, defeated Jonny Lagg in the semi-final to advance to the final. In the final the driver from Sweden should have met Sandro Bellio.

The multiple champion from Belgium defeated Silvio Strauch in the semi-final, but an engine explosion at the finish line caused so much damage that Bellio was not able to return for the final. Thus Bryntesson would have had a bye run in the final.

In Pro Stock there was a major surprise in the first round as number six qualifier Stefan Ernryd defeated reigning FIA European champion Michel Malmgren with a great 6.65 seconds. Richard Sundblom surprised Simon Ekengren to advance to the semi-finals where he should have met number one qualifier Jimmy Ålund, who had a bye run in the first round. In the last quarter final Robin Norén defeated Lasse Britsmar to advance to the semi-finals, where he should have met Ernryd.

The FIA European Drag Racing Championship continues in June with the SpeedEvents Internationals at Tierp Arena, Sweden.

More photos from The Main Event can be found at:

For all Main Event results:

Text and photos: Remco Scheelings

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