VOLUME XXI, NUMBER 9 - SEPTEMBER, 2019
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ET DRAG RACING
FIA Summit Racing Equipment Internationals at Tierp Arena, Sweden
Words and photos by Ivan Sansom & Rose Hughes
Jndia Erbacher’s 3.817 at a huge 318.96 mph set both ends of the European record in Top Fuel Dragster.
A week after the Nitrolympx in Germany (we understand that the calendar will look different in 2020 providing everyone with a bit of breathing space), the FIA European drag racing caravan headed north to Scandinavia for its penultimate event of the season. Over the course of the meeting there were three holders of the ET record in Top Fuel, a major tightening in the Pro Mod points chase, a class veteran stamping their authority on Pro Stock, and a flying low country racer nudging towards their first FIA championship – so, pretty eventful one might say.
FIA Top Fuel Dragster
Top Fuel at Tierp in August is usually a recipe for quick times. The 2019 edition of the Summit Equipment Internationals at the concrete Arena would prove to be no different. Incoming points leader and FIA ET record holder for over four years Anita Mäkelä improved her best numbers with a 3.828/317.45 in the final qualifying session, but the Finn had already been overtaken in the ET charts as Jndia Erbacher had earlier blitzed the track with a 3.817 at a huge 318.96 mph to take both ends of the European record for the Swiss Monster Energy team. Liam Jones (PBs at 3.867/314.47) and Maja Udtian (3.924 at only 256 mph) rounded out the rapid top four.
This quartet would progress to the semi-final stage although the opening round of eliminations wasn’t without excitement as Swedish veteran Mikael Kågered was ahead of Anita’s 3.852/313.29 before a blower belt snapped just before half track, Jones had a big flash of flame from the front of the motor slowing the CBD rail to a 4.319 although compatriot Tethys had a fireball at the hit, Udtian improved to a 3.887/289.26 to take the win over alternate Dennis Nilsson, the dislodged block at the finish line being deemed admissible after a protest against the Norwegian’s initial exclusion. Erbacher progressed at the expense of Timo Lehtimäki, who had spent much of qualifying turning money into melted aluminum, and Jndia also contributed a flame show of her own through the early section of the track.
The semi-final quartet were reduced to a trio as Jones was unable to recover from the damage sustained in the first round, handing Mäkelä a freebie that she probably needed given the effusive outpouring of oil that emerged from the left-hand side of the Levin Iglut /Auto Haapanen rail. On the other side of the ledger it was all Maja as the SalMar/RFM driver rocketed to a new European ET record with a 3.816/316.54 over Erbacher’s 4.010.
For the third time this season Udtian and Mäkelä would go head to head for the event trophy (both being in their fourth final of the five events contested to this point) and this time it was Maja’s time to get to the finish line first with a 3.885/271.69 to a 3.918/288.76 although both rides were running out of puff before the stripe. With one event remaining something strange will have to happen for Mäkelä to miss out on the points title, but we wouldn’t be too surprised if we see some more movement in the records ledger.
FIA Top Fuel
1. Jndia Erbacher (CH) 3.817/318.96 (semi-final)
2. Anita Mäkelä (Fin) 3.828/317.45 (runner-up)
3. Liam Jones (GB) 3.867/314.47 (semi-final)
4. Maja Udtian (Nor) 3.924/256.92 (winner)
5. Stig Neergaard (Den) 4.036/299.05
6. Tethys (GB) 4.069/289.26 (1st round)
7. Mikael Kågered (Swe) 4.375/231.25 (1st round)
8. Timo Lehtimäki (Fin) 4.658/195.42 (1st round)
9. Dennis Nilsson (Swe) 5.096/225.04 (1st round)
10. Patrik Pers (Swe) 5.629/111.14
Low ET: Udtian 3.816s
Best TS: Erbacher 318.96mph
FIA Pro Modified
The quick conditions didn’t quite deliver the record shredding in Pro Mod that we were treated to 12 months ago, but it was still pretty impressive nonetheless and eliminations provided a major shake-up in the points. Jan Ericsson led the field with a 5.805/247.99, the PB suggesting a strong raceday for the championship leader. Micke Gullqvist (also PBing 5.813/247.99), Jimmy Ålund (5.831/244.38), David Vegter (5.846/235.30) and Andreas Arthursson (5.891/252.85) were also in the eighties and heading up a quick sixteen-car field with a 6.234 bump.
Ålund departed in the opening round, Ericsson and Arthursson in the quarters, Vegter in the semis and Gullqvist made huge strides to take over the points lead with a string of 5.8s and a 5.845 delivered the event win over Roger Johansson’s nitrous entry.
Mathematically, five are still in the points chase, but with Gullqvist leading coming into the Euro Finals he might take some shifting as he searches for an eighth FIA Pro Mod championship.
FIA Pro Stock Car
FIA Pro Stock Car
Ålund looked to dominate Pro Stock in the Summit Racing Camaro and smashed off a 6.485/214.13 which reset the class ET record previously held by Bengt Ljungdahl who was somewhat distant with a 6.557 in second spot. Despite this gap at the front, the rest of the field was fairly tight with the 6.651 bump spot, meaning this was the quickest FIA field to date.
The quarters and semis went by in 6.526 and 6.514 seconds respectively, the latter defeating Michael Malmgren to ease Ålund to an eleventh FIA Pro Stock championship with one event left on the roster and it seemed inevitable that he would crown it off with the event win at his sponsor’s race, but a slight holeshot to opponent Robin Norén accompanied by a slight slip around 60 feet out enabled Norén to record his first FIA event win with a 6.622.
FIA Top Methanol
Jonny Lagg headed the qualifying sheets with the NGK-backed A Fuel entry, a 5.319 keeping him just ahead of the TMFCs of Sandro Bellio (5.558 reduced to a 5.338 with a 0.22-second handicap) and Linn Engan Fløysvik (5.342 again with a 0.22s handicap).
Lagg needed to make up ground on points leader Bellio through eliminations and running back to back 5.3s to meet Bellio in the final.
It wasn’t particularly opportune timing to stumble into the 5.6s when Sandro pulled out his best numbers of the weekend with a 5.504/262.14 to improve the chances of the Belgian taking his first FIA championship.
On Two Wheels
Four EDRS Pro Nordic Bike categories came to their conclusion at the Summit race.
Top Fuel Bike had Norway’s Jan Sturle Hegre taking the event win and points title onboard the Uggerud Brothers Top Fuel Puma.
Tommy Grimes Jr.
Stateside hired gun Tommy Grimes Jr prevailed on Per Bengtsson’s low six second blown parallel twin in Super Twin eliminations while Finn Torsti Kettula picked up enough points to take the class points chase when Grimes defeated Harri Piensalmi in the final.
Kalle Lyrén zipped to the event win with a series of six second passes in Pro Stock Bike, but Swecomposites Kenneth Holmberg took the series title.
Super Street Bike had Mathais Bohlin (near lane) defeat Ida Zetterström (far lane) in the final, but Ida had already taken the Super Street Bike points marbles by making it to the trophy pairing.
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