Preview FHRA Nitro Nationals Alastaro Finland 
June 30th - July 3rd


The event is included in the FIA & UEM European Drag Racing Championship. It is round #3 for the FIA Car classes and round #4 for the UEM Drag Bike classes. The event is also included in the NDRS Dragracing Series for sportsman classes which is administered by Speedgroup. 

- Online reports from the event by Speedgroup in co-operation  with organizer FHRA and Published by at . The results will be posted with some delay as the editor Andy Rogers is not on site in person. Photos and interviews posted a few times per day by Speedgroup via .

In addition Speedgroup publish the FHRA Nitro Nationals review newsletter the week following the event.

The event is filmed by the assigned championship tv-crew and is scheduled for 2 x 52 min shows covering the 8 championship classes.

The service center of championship administrator Speedgroup is located in the pit area close to the line up. Look for the Speedgroup flags and banners. We provide the following services on site:

- Contingency Program handling
Any team missing stickers is requested to come and visit us at the Speedgroup Service Center (look for the Speedgroup and NDRS Flags)

- NDRS teams must display NDRS stickers on the cars/bikes. They can be obtained at the service center from thursday.

- Information about drag racing and also in event- and championship matters to spectators and media

- Sign up for the online Speedgroup Newsletters

- Sales assistance for team merchandise 

- Speedgroup Drivers & Riders Club sign-up for the NDRS and SDL sportsman teams - read more here!

- Sales of misc. products from Persåkers Speedshop

- Sales of selected Lucas Oil products incl the Jr Dragster Racing Oil

- Support to teams and the organizers in misc. event- and championship related matters  

FACTS ABOUT FHRA and the event in Finnish can be found at

NDRS Sportsman classes run at the FHRA Nitro Nationals:

- Competition Eliminator
- Super Gas
- Stock/Superstock
- Super Comp
- Junior Dragster
- Super Gas Bike

Championship Classes briefing:

FIA Top Fuel Dragster:
10 teams entered for an 8 car elimination ladder
Competition distance: 1000 foot

Notes: It was finnish driver Timo Lehtimäki who won at his home track 2010 while the best ET in Top Fuel Dragster was 4,11 sec. and set by Risto Poutianen.

At the last championship event Andersen racing with US driver Tommy Johnson Jr ran a Europe quickest 3.95 sec, will be interesting to see if a 3-second run can be repeated in Alastaro.

The championship when entering Alstaro is lead by Tommy Johnson Jr (146 points) , followed by Risto Poutiainen (114), who is on home grounds and in third place Ur Erbacher and Anita Mäkelä both at 91 points. Watch out for the finnish teams, they are always to count with on their home grounds!
FIA Top Methanol Dragster:
8 teams entered for an 8 car elimination ladder

Last years it was Timo Habermann who won the FHRA Nitro Nationals over brother Dennis, while Dave Wilson noted the low ET of the class running 5.37 sec.

At the last event in Tierp Wilson set a new best ET for the class and became the first one under 5.30 sec. and a number of drivers are just waiting to join him. The class is strong in numbers and performance level.

In the championship lead is Fred Hanssen (132 points) followed by Dave Wilson (118) and Timo Habermann (98)

FIA Top Methanol Funny Car:
4 teams entered for an 8 car elimination ladder

Notes:  In 2010 Arvid Grödem won the event, he ran a best of 5.93 sec, which was the low ET for the class that event. This year Arvid has proved his team Westside´s performance level is higher and more consistent. Ulf Leanders is on the entry list and on paper looks like a favourite, while dark horse and winner from Tierp Jonas Staflund is also present. And Jarmo Kuutniemi who has Alastaro as his home track can never be counted out.. so even if the size of the field is not strong the performance level will be, we are pretty sure about that..   

FIA Pro Modified:
21 teams entered for a 16 car elimination ladder

Notes:  Micke Gullqvist won the Nitro Nationals 2010 with 2010 champion Johan Lindberg as runner-up. The low ET that time was set by Gullqvist 5.911 sec. It was not backed up to be a record but is still the quickest run in Pro Mod in Europe.

At the last event in Tierp a few weeks ago it was Bruno Bader who won the final against Gullqvist, while Johan Lindberg joined the prominent 5 second club (see separate article in this edition). Many potential candidates for the final in this class. The Alastaro track is not the easiest one to master for the Pro Mod teams, but will (we think) prove to be fast for the ones who find a working setup early during qualifications. 

The Championship is lead by Bruno Bader (150 points), followed by Michael Gullqvist (145) and Johan Lindberg (110)   

Don´t miss to check out editor Robin Jackson´s special
Alastaro Pro Mod Preview ! 

FIA Pro Stock:
12 teams entered for an 8 car elimination ladder

Notes: Winner of the Alastaro event 2010 was Michael Malmgren, who also set the low ET of the event with 6.76 sec. Jimmy Ålund was present at the time in a borrowed ride and without success. Sampsa Palos had not entered the championship yet at last year´s FHRA Nitro Nationals.. this year he has and Palos won the last event in Tierp. The top teams in the Pro Stock class have spoiled us and are always kind of expected to perform in the 5.70´s and the anticipation this time is no different.

In the championship lead before Alastaro
is Sampsa Palos (130 points) followed by Jimmy Ålund (119) and last year´s champion Michael Malmgren is third with 94 points.


UEM European Drag Bike Championship

UEM Top Fuel Bike:
6 teams entered for an 8 bike elimination ladder
Notes: winner of  the event 2010 Petri Paljakka, he also won the European Champions title in Top Fuel Bike 

Low ET of the event was set by also set by Paljakka at 6.66 sec.

At the last event this year King (who will be at the starting line at Alastaro) ran in the 6.30´s , Dahl in the 6.40´s.. our guess is the performance  level will be higher than last year. Both Jaska Salakari and Samu Kemppainen are on the entry list in both Top Fuel Bike and Super Twin Bike. They are in for a hectic weekend!

Ian King leads the championship points standings at 130 points, Peter Svensson follows at 86 points (he is not entering the Alastaro event) and in third place is Sverre Dahl with 44 points.

UEM Super Twin Bike:
19 teams entered for an 8 bike elimination ladder

Notes: Winner 2010 was Hans Olav Olstad while low ET of the event was set by Job Heezen at 6.72 sec.

Last event in Tierp was won by Per Bengtsson, veteran and champion 2009. The Australian rider Mark Ashelford entered the championship in Tierp and was runner-up. The performance level was in 6.50 and 6.60´s which is possibly what we can expect at Alastaro. Two finnish riders double in Super Twin and Top Fuel Bike at Alastaro; Jaska Salakari and Samu Kemppainen. 

The top trio in the points standings are;
Jan Sturla Hegré (134 points) , Hans Olav Olstad (133) and Per Bengtsson (122).

Tight and competitive performance can be expected!

UEM Pro Stock Bike:
13 teams entered for an 8 bike elimination ladder

Notes: Last years winner in Pro Stock Bike was Ulf Ögge. The low ET of the event was set by Anders Abrahamson with 7.14 sec. This year a few teams have noted ET:s in the 7.0 second range, something that we can see happen at Alastaro again. Last years champion Ulf Ögge will be eager to earn points and an event win again after having missed out the two first events and ended outside the elimination ladder at the Tierp event, Ögge is currently 21st in the points standings.

Championship leader Jesper Thiel is in a stable lead (235 points) before Fredrik Fredlund (172) and Kalle Lyrén (144).

This is the sign that meet the teams and spectators when getting close to the Alastaro race track. Speedgroup´s Aila Striem (pictured) will be on site to assist teams and the organizer together with
collegues Åsa Kinnemar and Lena Perés.

Text: Åsa Kinnemar for Speedgroup
Photos from Alastaro 2010 by Speedgroup

This article is part of the Speedgroup Club Europe Newsletters #9/2011

Published by Speedgroup
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© Speedgroup 2011