Autosport International
NEC Birmingham, 12th-15th January 2023


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James McVey, (third from left) International Sales Manager for sponsor VP Racing Fuels, announced that Williams Brothers Racing are to become exclusive UK distributors of VP Racing Fuels' range of lubricants. "We are more than race fuel", said James. "We produce additives, octane boosters, coolants and racing oils both PCMO and synthetic. Our focus is on high quality and the best possible product. The brand is growing on the lubricant side and we are excited to be partnered with the Williams brothers. They can promote the product and they go to the track so they have hands-on experience. We know that there is a lot of choice for customers and we offer a superior product which racers know will be consistent.

"Dan and Nic have been working with Freddie Turza for years; he understands the market and he said that these are the guys to work with."

Freddie Turza, VP Racing Fuels' Technical Manager, said "The Williams brothers are premier engine builders and racers and I would say that they make good Brand Ambassadors. Their reputation speaks for itself. They will be the exclusive distributor of our lubricants in the UK and will be there on the technical side to help racers. They will have all of our products at their own facility.

"Dan and Nic will be coming back and forth to the USA to race, so we have a programme to support their racing in the USA at Indy, Las Vegas and Pomona. Our oils are becoming very popular and gaining a lot of confidence from the racers. David Barton won the Factory Stock Showdown using out products and we have developed a Pro Stock oil which was used by Caruso Racing last season, and Greg Anderson won an event using it. We have lubricants for everything from Top Fuel to Stock Eliminator."

On the personal side Freddie said that it was great to be back for the first time since Covid, catching up with people and seeing familiar faces again.

Colin Theobald (middle), mainly known as Track Announcer at Santa Pod Raceway but also as owner and driver of Bruce, also had a Williams brothers-related announcement. "Because of the expansion of OCS Group, Nic is so busy that he needs extra help", said Colin. "So as from next week I will be working part-time for OCS Group on marketing, social media - Facebook and Instagram - customer liaison and behind-the-scenes work. It will predominantly be with the Speed Shop but with the paint shop and workshops too. The boys have given me a new challenge!"

Straight To The Point Racing (from left Aimee Chiarella, Ben Chiarella, Nathan Ward and George Chiarella) were displaying George Chiarella's Comp Eliminator Coupe and the block of Ben Chiarella's forthcoming Camaro Pro Mod. Ben said that the team use CAD after making alterations so that in the event of failure they can machine an identical part. "The CAD is amazing, it can scan a block in half an hour!", he said.

"We are waiting for rods for the Coupe", said George. "The back order is six months, it's a nightmare!". Ben said that the Camaro race car itself is ready to go and that he has various parts, but more are awaited and that in any case his customers come before his own racing. "We do a lot of circuit stuff", he said. "It's all hands on deck because business comes first". Straight To The Point Racing can supply chassis, bodies, paint, engine machining and gearbox builds. "We do a lot of circuit repairs and welding" added Ben.

Robin Read was displaying his brace of six-second nitro-burning Daimler-powered dragsters which first ran in 1987(nearest camera) and 2020 respectively. He is still intent on making a 200 mph pass in the old dragster. "The old car is having an Arrow billet crank and we are having a set of gears made for the 8¾", he said. "Race gears aren't available so we're having a set made by Sovereign Gears. The new car is having a late generation billet crank from Arrow. With the new car we just want to get some runs in without blowing it up. We have a datalogger from which we got some data but not enough for a baseline and not enough to stop it blowing up! With the old car it's a quest for 200 mph."

Herb Andrews said that he worked with the datalogger, on loan from Dave Wilson, sending run logs to Grumpy who, working from home, would then e-mail suggestions back. "Dave really knows his stuff", said Herb. "He is always thinking about the run after next". "Herb sent me the settings and I could write back without getting cold and wet!", said Grumpy. sponsor the Anglo American Oil Company had their usual large display with headpiece making the stand easily locatable from the other end of the hall. Also as usual at Autosport International, boss Anders Hildebrand was packing twenty five hours of work into a twenty four-hour day.

F1 in Schools is a long-running scheme to teach children about all aspects of running a race team from designing the car through formulating a business plan to attract sponsorship, testing and racing, but they are also judged on verbal presentation, pit area, engineering skills and more. Somewhat ironically the race itself is a drag race over a twenty metre track. This weekend the Show is hosting the National Finals for Primary and Secondary pupils.

Old Hall Performance are the UK distributors for fuel produced by VP Racing Fuels including supplying Santa Pod Raceway. The company's drag22 discount code is still valid on their web site at

It was good to see old friend, TV presenter and lifestyle event commentator Bryn Lucas working on the Show's local coverage.

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