Midgley Takes Lead in 2 Top Fuel Motorcycle Championships
Photos courtesy of Ivan Sansom and Rose Hughes
Following UK racer Neil Midgley’s second British Championship event win at the rescheduled `Festival of Power’ to consolidate his points lead he made it three event wins out of three with a superb showing at the opening round of the FIM European Championship `Main Event’ at his home track.
On the Puma Engineering machine, the King Racing and Cannon Motorsports collaboration faced its sternest challenge of the year with the 5-second machines of reigning European Champion Rikard Gustafsson of Sweden on his Puma, fellow Brit Al Smith on the unique PBR `Rocket’ triple and a full field of quick Top Fuel machines and rapid turbo Funnybikes to contend with.
However, after an early clicked off test pass in Q1, Neil raced immediately into P1 and then ran a fine 5.7905 at `only’ 219.24 mph only to be upstaged by Gustafsson who ran a stunning 5.7674 at 244.09 mph. However, Midgley retained P1 with a fabulous 5.7084 @ 245.09mpoh, a PB best for both ET and MPH.
Race day proved to be a belter, with Midgley taking out Sweden’s Thomas Petersson whilst Gustafsson also made steady progress on the other side of the ladder with a 5.864 @ a record-breaking 260.65 mph.
In the semi’s Midgley faced Funnybike rider Mark Smith who also posted a PB earlier in the event but was no match for the Nitro bike of Midgley who ran an `easy’ 5.847 @ 215.84. Meanwhile Gustafsson ran another fine 5.7759 @ 256.22 mph to overcome standout (and with a new PB FB European best) Funnybike rider Stuart Crane’s 6.400 @ 204.42 mph.
So to the final with both Midgley and Gustafsson on `kill’ settings, that proved to be too much for the failing track conditions. Midgely nailed Gustafsson on the tree with a 0.0294 s to 0.1808 s reaction time and despite a pedal fest the holeshot prevailed and Midgley took his first-ever FIM event win and Championship lead.
Once again, the team was on the ball with their short times, an amazing and world-beating 60ft performance of 6 x sub-one-second passes with a best of 0.9519 secs.
The King Racing / Cannon Motorsports collaboration look forward to building on their early European Championship lead at the event in Tierp, Sweden this weekend.
The team is proud to be supported in their world-class performances by their blue-chip partners:
APE – The world’s most innovative manufacturer of aftermarket parts for race bikes
COMETIC GASKETS – The Premier Manufacturer of racing gaskets
GATES – The world’s most trusted name in drive belts, hoses, and hydraulics
GOODRIDGE – The most innovative and the best in fluid transfer systems
JE PISTONS – The world’s premier manufacturer of high-performance forged pistons
KIBBLEWHITE PRECISION MACHINING – The highest quality valve train components available
KING RACING – The most successful Top Fuel Team in European history
LUCAS OIL PRODUCTS INC – High performance engine & gear oils second to none in the racing industry
MRE – Leaders in trackside support for drag race components and air shifting systems
MTC ENGINEERING – Manufacturer of clutches for the fastest motorcycles in the world
NGK SPARKPLUGS UK – The world’s number one spark plug manufacturer
PAR WILLEN – Master webmaster and proprietor of HarleyDrags.com
PRO ALLOY MOTORSPORT – The UK’s leading fabricator of alloy tanks, intercoolers, and radiators
PUMA ENGINEERING LTD – Manufacturer of the World’s most powerful motorcycle engines
VANSON LEATHERS – The most iconic brand in motorsport leather goods
WARPSPEED RACING – All aspects of engineering, fabrication, and machining for dragbikes
WORLDWIDE BEARINGS – The world’s leading supplier of ceramic bearings for racing
ZODIAC – Europe’s largest supplier of performance and aftermarket HD parts