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MSA

 

MSA British Drag Racing Championship
Gordon Appleton

Gordon Appleton

Car: '67 Chevrolet Camaro
Occupation: Wheelgame Ltd. – independent tyre & exhaust fitting
Home Town/Country: Thatcham
Team: Wheelgame Racing
Best ET: 6.308 seconds
Best Terminal Speed: 224mph
UK

Gordon started racing a vivid orange Super Gas Camaro in 1988 and entered Pro Modified in 1994. This proven combination of car and crew was always a strong challenger at every race it attended.

In 2006, Gordon enlisted fuel system help from the prominent Canadian Pro Mod racer, Carl Spiering, but suffered a freak accident before September’s FIA European Finals when violent tyre-shake broke a rear wheel and spun the car around, damaging it against the track wall.

In 2007, with the car rebuilt, Gordon’s assault on MSA Round 1 at Easter was then curtailed by an electrical fault, although a 6.33sec./221.82mph demonstration pass suggested his Camaro had regained its competitive bite. At May’s Main Event (MSA Rnd. 2), Gordon clocked a personal-best ET of 6.308 before rain stopped play and, at June’s Summer Nationals (MSA Rnd. 3), was knocked out by a couple of holed pistons after winning his first elimination round.

In July, Gordon was one of the British Pro Mod racers contesting the FIA events at Alastaro, Finland, and Mantorp Park, Sweden. At Alastaro, Gordon qualified 5th and won his opening-round eliminations match before rain again intervened. At Mantorp, he qualified 7th in Europe’s quickest-ever Pro Mod field and lost the opener to eventual race winner Michael Gullqvist.

At Santa Pod’s FIA European Finals (MSA Rnd. 4), Gordon qualified 12th (6.447/216.23), ironically one place higher than the race’s eventual winner, Sweden’s Patrik Wikström, but lost his opening match to Mats Eriksson. At the pre-event Press Day, Gordon had taken a local TV staffer on what is believed to be the quickest and fastest passenger ride ever, at 6.7sec./216mph.

Having announced that this would be his last season in the sport, Gordon formally retired after the European Finals, a sad departure for Pro Mod and for UK drag racing in general.

Click photos to enlarge.

Gordon Appleton spacer Gordon Appleton spacer Gordon Appleton

CAR SPECIFICATIONS

Car / bodyshell: '67 Chevrolet Camaro - fibreglass
Chassis: Andy Robinson Race Cars (new 2003)
Engine: 520ci Brad Anderson. Carl Spiering fuel system,
Supercharger: Kobelco
Pistons: JE
Ignition: MSD
Transmission: Lenco 3-speed
Clutch: Crower  
Rear axle: Andy Robinson Race Cars
Wheels: American Racing
Tyres: Hoosier
Parachutes: Stroud