Main Event - Santa Pod

The weekend that wasn’t!
The Main Event 2007 will be remembered by us as “the weekend that wasn’t”.

It all started very promisingly.  After weeks of acquiring parts from various places and people both here and in the USA we found ourselves on Wednesday evening with a car loaded and ready to run and a transporter freshly washed and ready to go. The car and truck with further livery for Lucas Oils to reflect their very welcome and increased support on the Silverline Racing dragster.

So Thursday morning, a beautiful day and off to the track with Linda.  Good journey, we get parked very efficiently by the track staff and spend the rest of the day with the two of us erecting the awning and laying out all of the rest of the pit equipment, plus catching up with all our visiting friends and competitors who we haven’t seen since last year.

At this point, despite the sunshine, we realised that there was some concern about the weather for the coming days.  But this is England right?!  They can’t predict the weather right?!  So the only concern we have is to get into the field on the first qualifier just in case the weather interfered with Sundays running (little did we know what was to come).

Friday we finished organising the pit area and equipment and started a complete check of the car (due to so much of it being taken apart and lots of small items being changed, i.e. fresh mag cap and leads, plus some fresh wiring and a complete re-plumbing of the fuel and oil systems courtesy of Barry Miller at BMRS).  Barry allowed me to take the required pipe and fittings to our workshop to design and cut all the pipe runs to length and then return them to him for final assembly and testing.  That kind of support from our product sponsors is invaluable in an effort to get the race car to the track in the best condition possible.

Whilst doing our car and systems check the Lucas Oil delivery van arrived at our pit with the order we had already placed to see us through the season.  Another example of the great support we get from our sponsors.  We have used Lucas Oil products for 9 years in the race car and in all our support vehicles and never had a reason to try anything else.  It really is the best.

The new Lucas Oil products graphics, by Darren at Power Race Graphics, added to the Silverline Tools liveried dragster over paint applied by Kiki and his guys at Euro American Car Services all attracted lots of favourable comments, as did the new Silverline team shirts brilliantly produced at the last minute by Karen at Busy Bee Embroidery (sorry Karen I should have given you more notice).  Then, after all of that, a couple of gentle warm ups to check and break in new parts and with all systems OK we were ready for the qualifying to follow on Saturday.

Saturday and first day of qualifying for us.  As already mentioned the number one object is to make a run without any infringements to get definitely qualified in the field.  But number two object is to check out fresh parts and systems as gently as possible.  This meant we decided to only go to half track first time out (most of the performance on a run can be judged by the information to half track, but most of the risk of damage to the engine is in the second half).

Well that run turned out fine, good numbers to half track and we actually cut the motor at 800 foot and qualified with 6.01.  More importantly no problems found with the car on the turnaround.  So now a few minor adjustments and we are ready to try again and see what a full pass will give us.   Well what it gave us was a pleasant reward for all the hard work, 5.439 straight to number one spot.  Actually, a run that was far from perfect.  Enough tyre shake to slow the car in first gear and a number of adjustments that we could tell from the data would improve things.

Then Saturday evening it started to rain.  Well, we thought hopefully, its Sunday’s rain come early, that’s probably good!  And, sure enough, at 6am the following morning no noise of rain on the trailer roof.  But just about 8am it started again and at that point “The weekend went missing”.

Time stops, you enter a kind of limbo.  Checking on the rain, talking about the rain, looking at the rain and even getting some of the rain on you!  But it still just rained and time stands still until it stops – but this time it didn’t stop.  Nor did it stop on Sunday night or Monday morning and finally we all ran out of time, hence “The weekend that wasn’t “!

We only had one days racing not three but I feel we did make best use of it to come home with a good qualifying time, number one position, lowest ET and the points lead in the championship plus the thought of what might have been which makes it all worthwhile.

See you all in Finland (with hopefully some sunshine) !!!
Dave Wilson