We had a fantastic evening on Saturday 27th at Drayton Manor to celebrate our official 25th Anniversary of the Wild Bunch Series!! A brilliant evening enjoyed by around 80 Wild Bunchers
Many thanks to our fabulous compère Paul Wright, who gave a lovely Introduction and called all of our winners with their citations.
We began with thank you gifts to all of our lovely ladies attending, followed by presentations of flowers, by and thanks to Mark Coulsell, to Claire M and Angie Woods.
We had a few trophies to be presented from those who were unable to collect them at events this year (including 2 awesome ones made by Elaine of cool engineeredart and 2 awesome ones made by Steve of Piston Rings and Things! Two exceptional unique trophy fabricators who we are lucky to have in our WB ranks! Thank you folks!!).
Next came all of the presentations to our amazing Series winners this year: 9th Springbridge MSUK Challenge, 23rd Roy Wilding Nostalgia Race Cars Series, 6th Spirit of Nostalgia Challenge and the glorious 25th Wild Bunch Series!!! ALL of these were won by the Marras, Rob & Pete Brown!!!! Many Congratulations to Pete & Rob and Team and to all of our brilliant winners!! Well done to all!!!
The Top 10 winners and others were also presented with fab photos of their excellent cars!! Many thanks to Callum Pudge if Pudgey's Photos for these!!! You are a star!!
We then had a couple of special commemorative presentations, to our lovely Secretary Lynne Coulsell and to Treasurer Claire Meaddows (in her 25th year in that role!!)
To celebrate and commemorate our WB Silver Anniversary,we presented founder and first Chairman Roy Wilding, and longtime 13-year Chairman Chris Hartnell with crystal stars with ‘Thank you’ inscriptions, plus photos of their awesome cars!
We also presented commemorative crystal stars to our current and valued committee members: Mark Coulsell, Dave Williams, Bob Hawkins, Steve Cassisi and Mark Hartnell and to GM Claire Meaddows for that role
We also have a star to send to Tony Smith in recognition of all of his years of service on the committee
Thank you to all these wonderful people for all they have done for the Wild Bunch over the years and for all they continue to do!! So much appreciated!!
Next followed the presentation of our special Merit Awards to all our incredible winners:
Big Bang Trophy
This driver started off the season with numerous problems and although he attended 4 events, he only made a few runs this year, which included an absolutely incredible run of 6.622 @ 202.36 mph (out of competition in a test session at the Summer Nationals). Throughout the season he was plagued with problems where the car cut out after burnouts. Undaunted, he kept trying many different possible solutions. Determined, he tried everything to get a last qualifier in at the National Finals, running a 7.80, but at huge expense to the internals of his engine, which was comprehensively decimated!! A huge shame! We all wish Bob the very best for next season chasing 6’s over 200mph!!
‘Mr Perseverance’ Bob Hawkins “Time Traveller II”
*We also presented Bob with a ‘Run of the Year’ award and photo for that 6/200!
Fastest time by a British-engined dragster (the Martin Holgate award)
[This time needs to be backed up within 2% and the driver attend 2 or more events]
Tim ran a fantastic 9.121 in his Jag-powered “Boston Straggler 2” slingshot at the Hot Rod Drags, backed up by his 9.139 at the same event! Well done Tee!!
Tim Roy “Boston Straggler II «
[The driver must attend at least 4 events and back up within 2%]
This team was tuning and improving throughout the season with its great driver & crew chief combination! The driver ran many runs over 160mph this year, and he set a new Personal Best 161.94 mph at the Hot Rod Drags. This was backed up within 2%, with 161.92 mph at the Green Light Nationals! Way to go Marra Senior!
Mark Coulsell “Ballbreaker”
[The driver must attend at least 4 events and back up within 2%]
This driver didn’t have the best of seasons in his amazing slingshot! But, as always, he persevered and recorded a last ditch qualifier of 7.800 at the National Finals. He backed this ET up, albeit with a much quicker 7.184, at the Springspeed Nationals!! Well done Bob!! Hoping you will have a 6-second ET record next year!!
The Roy Wilding ‘Best Newcomer’ Award (we had 5 this year!)
This enthusiastic new member had never driven a race car before but he and his well-organised family team jumped straight in and quickly became a constant at the 4 events they ran, really enjoying their racing and fitting right in! He improved throughout the season and ran a PB of 12.578 @ 103 mph, finishing an excellent 7th in the Wild Bunch Series! Well done Steve & team! Welcome to the Bunch!
Steve Garlant “Sonic Attack”
These 3 categories of Best Vehicle trophies are chosen by commentator Colin Theobald, who judges the winners on high standards of presentation, appearance and performance.
Colin was attending and presented these.
Best Radical or Rear-engine Dragster
The winner this year is a gorgeous looking well turned out car. They competed at 8events, with the driver winning 2 races and gaining 4 more Top 4 places. They always display great family spirit and teamwork and it’s fair to say the ladies of the team, Anna & Allison, really stepped up to the plate this year and, along with ever-faithful Matt, did an excellent supportive job as crew! The team were Runner-up in 3 Series! A great performance!
Phil James “Rampage”
This Slingshot is an absolutely stunning-looking period correct nostalgic car and is always well turned out! The team have smart matching crew wear and lovely backup girls! They have persevered and greatly improved performance throughout the 5 events they ran at this year, overcoming starting issues, and recording PB’s with ‘firsts’ of 8.944 @ 154.21mph! Brilliant!
Andy Clifford "Snake Eyes"
This altered has quite a lot of history in the Wild Bunch and is in very good hands with its latest owner! The team ran at 4 events this season. They tested and improved performance with the driver recording his first 12’s with a PB of 12.578 @ 103 mphin his debut season as well as finishing a very creditable 7th place in the Wild Bunch Series! We look forward to seeing them next year!
Steve Garlant "Sonic Attack"
The Roy Wilding ‘Best Turned Out’ Award
This enthusiastic and popular team are regular members of the Wild Bunch and always display a very well turned out and beautiful race car, matched with very professional teamwear. They won a Best Appearing Car and a Best Appearing Team Spot Prize during the 5 events they raced at this year. They always put on a fantastic show, which included an excellent flame display at the Hot Rod Drags Cracklefest!! Jolly good show!!
Roll the Dice Racing, Andy & The Clifford family
This is a very hardworking team with well-turned out cars which are a real credit to them all! They achieved great consistency this season in the 8 events they raced at, earning 6 Spot Prizes. They also earned 4 event wins, and 3 Top 4 placings, and WON the Wild Bunch, Spirit of Nostalgia Challenge, Roy Wilding, Springbridge MSUK and the SPRC Championship with “Rebel”. A fantastic clean sweep! In addition they had three Top 4 Series placings with “Wrathchild”!! 2 cars in the Top 4 of 3 Series!! The first time this has been done in the WB & Spirit Series and only the 2nd time in 20 years in Roy’s Series! Congratulations and very well-deserved!!
The Marras, Rob & Pete Brown “Rebel” & “Wrathchild” Racing
“It was in bits at most meetings!!” was one quote about this team’s racecar! The whole team worked relentlessly through several breakages during the season and kept bouncing back and making great runs! Several Spot Prizes included Best Slingshot and Best Burnout! During the season they tried everything they could to keep running, and never gave up!! In the words of Kerry: “Steve has worked a miracle this year on getting to #4! Lots of sweat, tears and swearing!” … And hasn’t it all paid off?!! … All of this perseverance resulted in PB’s of 8.247 @ 161mph and a first ever 4th Place in the Wild Bunch Series! Congratulations and a huge well done to Team Heaven!!
Slimline Racing "Tight Fit "
The Derek & Brenda Annable Award
This award was initiated by Derek & Brenda to be presented to a ‘couple’ or partnership who are committed to Drag Racing, and demonstrate the family spirit of the Wild Bunch.
Last year’s winners Ian, Ozzie & Harrison Brown have chosen the 2021 winners:
………..… Chris & Callum Swinchatt of “Kings N/W”
They write: We would like to award Chris & Callum the Derek & Brenda Annable Trophy as they truly are a perfect partnership! They continue to maintain a Nostalgic style of Drag Racing with their Topolino Altered, whilst being extremely competitive in both The Wild Bunch and Super Pro. Their laid back and easy going nature makes them a pleasure to be around and, with this, they create a fine example of a Drag Racing Team and partnership.
Congratulations from: Ian, Ozzie & Harrison Brown and the whole Wild Bunch!
C & C Sportsperson Award
This very popular, friendly, modest, humble and easy-going guy has been a regular member of the Wild Bunch for several years and really enjoys his racing. He puts on a very entertaining all round show and this is matched by great performances in the low 9’s at over 150mph! He is constantly willing to go out of his way to help everyone and does so at the drop of a hat! He always supports other racers and displays great.... sportsmanship no matter what. He is an all-round nice guy! Yeehah!
Jim Tanner “Shindigger”
Crew of the Year Shield
Celebrating crews’ hard work, achievements & dedication!
Our winner this year is a very hardworking family team, who although so busy themselves, always offer to help anyone in need, sometimes crewing for multiple teams as well as their own! Nothing is ever too much trouble for any member of this team and they cheerfully assist everyone they can! They have all worked tirelessly this year for their team and together they have achieved WINS in EVERY Series!! Let’s have a well-deserved huge cheer for...
Hayley, Natalie, Julie, George, Rob & Pete Team Wrathchild & Rebel
The Scottie Durrant ‘Above and Beyond’ Award
This wonderful family team are always excellent ambassadors for the Wild Bunch and Nostalgia Drag Racing in general. Let’s start with the Crew Chief! A renowned peer says “He is always willing to help others and is extremely professional” describing him as ‘one of the best’! … He always offers help, consulting, tuning and crew support to other teams during events! The ladies of the team not only help run the cars & provide gorgeous BUG duties, but also look after the family during events. They both had to overcome their own health issues and issues with their family’s health this year, and are still active members of the team providing invaluable support. They even offer to help other teams when low on crew! They also offer hospitality in their pits to friends, family and other teams! Wonderful unsung heroes! As for the driver, what can we say?! An absolute legend!! This year he had to face the huge health issue of being very poorly from the dreaded covid, and has overcome that to still come racing and put in his usual 8-hundred %!! Always cheerfully offering to help others along the way! And recently turning 50!!! Congrats Mr C!!! In the 6 events they attended, they were rewarded with 1 win and three 3rd place event finishes and achieved a hard fought 9th place in the Wild Bunch and 3rd in the Spirit of Nostalgia! They even ran a PB 8.075 @ 161.94 along the way!! This team well and truly displays the spirit of ‘Above & Beyond’!
Team LFR: Mark & Lynne, Steve & Anna, Harley & Ada “Ballbreaker”
Daddy Cool (Sags) Personal Achievement Shield (Elaine Southworth presented this)
An amazing team effort! This year the award goes to a strong family team who have been Wild Bunch members and supporters for a long time. They suffered a great loss earlier this year, losing their beloved Dave, who always worked tirelessly to help others! The team then determined that they would get the “Angel” back up and running in tribute to Dave, and worked hard with a team of friends to rebuild the engine and get the car running at the Hot Rod Drags, where Warren took the car in to the 8’s for the first time, with a PB 8.908 / 147mph! A huge achievement! Together they have carried on brilliantly in Dave’s memory and he will be so proud!! Well done to all!!!
'Crazy' Chris Showmanship Award
A tribute to Chris’ entertainment & the great show he’s always puts on!
This family team are absolutely passionate about Nostalgia Drag Racing and do everything they can to recreate the golden era of the 60’s! They put on a fantastic Nostalgia drag racing display, with their entertaining burnouts and impressive runs and well turned out pit area! From running fuel masks, to having period correct and stunning looking racecars, and gorgeous backup girls, they consistently put on a good show and have a great rappor with the crowd, even throwing T-shirts out to the stands, American-style! Even more impressive, they do it all with 2 drivers and 2 cars!! With performances in the 8’s and 160mph and 10’s and 120mph! They are winners too ..… winning every Series this year!! The whole team always put on an amazing show!!
The Marras, Pete & Rob Brown “Rebel” & “Wrathchild” Racing
Driver Dave Memorial Bell – Kept Calm and Carried On!
Angie Woods & Warren Rowlands had created this new award in loving memory of Dave Rowlands, to recognise people they believe go the extra mile to help others, just as Dave always did. Angie gave a lovely speech in honour of Dave and outlined all the attributes the winner displayed. The inaugural winner of this wonderful award is:
And then it was time to present ‘The Big One’!!
Don Garlits ‘Spirit of Drag Racing’ Shield
Story of the Shield
This award was instigated in 1996, when Roy Wilding wrote to the man himself seeking permission to name a trophy in his honour. Don Garlits duly replied, writing on Roy’s letter simply … “Sounds OK to me!”. To be eligible, a team must have participated in at least 4 events during the season. A winner may not repeat within 5 years. The Spirit of Drag Racing Shield is presented for many reasons which are all demonstrated by our very fitting 25th Anniversary winner!!
This year’s winners have been members of the Wild Bunch for many years, and it’s fair to say that their lives revolve around Drag Racing and Nostalgia Drag Racing in particular! They always field a well turned out racecar, which they continuously seek to improve. Every member of this close family team are ever ready to lend a hand to others and literally go above and beyond to help other teams, in a friendly, caring and supportive way, and are a true ambassadors for the Wild Bunch. They go to great lengths to ensure their teamwear, pits and more are matching to their fantastic race car! In fact, almost everything they own is co-ordinated in team colours! Without fail they display great passion, enthusiasm and commitment to the Wild Bunch family! They regularly improved the car’s performance throughout the year, running numerous PB’s in the 8’s at over 160mph and have earnt 3 performance related Spot prizes this season during the 6 events they took part in. They have Won an event and had 3 Top 4 placings and reached the Top 4 of three Series. They have also won the Scottie Durrant Above and Beyond Award for very special reasons, and display all the attributes this great award stands for. This season has been a real testimony to their strength of character and love for Nostalgia Drag Racing! And, as always, they have shone through with flying orange and black colours!! They are exceptionally valued members of the Wild Bunch and demonstrate the true spirit of this award and family spirit of our club!!
TEAM LIMITED FUNZ RACING – MARK & LYNNE, STEVE & ANNA, HARLEY & ADA
This is the first time that a team has Won the Shield for a 2nd time, with their first time being in 2012!!