Ahhh Real Monsters are Coming!

Monsters are making their way to Essex, but don’t have nightmares as it’s all in the name of entertainment.

On Saturday 18th April, Arena Essex at Thurrock will host the Southern round of The UK Monster Truck Nationals. Europe’s most famous names in monster trucking will be racing in head-to-head car-crushing action, including ‘Red Dragon’, ‘Swamp Thing’, ‘Slingshot’, plus current European Champion ‘Podzilla’ and local favourite ‘Crusher’.

In addition to the racing, there will also be a full round of monster freestyle, where all the trucks impress the crowd with wild jumps and stunts including ‘Sky Wheelies’, ‘Cyclones’ and ‘Donuts’.

If that isn’t enough, the event will also feature one of Europe’s top motorcycle stunt riders ‘Flyin Ryan’ – the master of freestyle motocross, performing giant jumps and extreme stunts.

The grand finale will be ‘Fireforce’ – the world fastest jet dragster in action. This mind-blowing machine is capable of speeds over 300mph in just 6 seconds, and will thrill the Arena Essex crowds with a world class flame and vapour show.

Young fans will also get the opportunity to meet the drivers for autographs and photos in a pre-show pit party from 6pm to 7pm (additional £10 fee per family).

Gates open at 6pm and the ation starts at 7.30pm. Car parking is free and admission prices are £15 for adults, just £5 for children (ages 5-15) and £35 for a family (2 adults & 2 children). Under 5’s are free. Monster discounts are available by calling the 24 hour hotline on 0871 2305581 (closes Monday 13th April).

For an exclusive preview of the Monster Truck Nationals, visit Lakeside Shopping Centre on Saturday 4th April between 10am and 6pm. The ‘Crusher’ monster truck will be on display near Car Park 3 – you can see the truck, meet owner Lewis Cook and even grab discount vouchers to save money on your show admission.

The Marangoni Fast Show 2008 Report – Sunday 22nd March

After a cold and damp winter, the Marangoni Fast Show arrived at Santa Pod just as spring did. With glorious blue skies, and only a slight chill in the air, thousands of modified cars descended on the famous quarter mile dragstrip to make the most of the good start to the season.

The show started on Saturday with a full day of Run What Ya Brung that ran well into the dark. With loads of hot cars out on track, it was a positive sign that although the new-car industry is dying on its ass, the modified car world is as healthy as ever, joined on track by the usual Fast Show variety of supercars, classics, dragsters and outright crazy home-builds. When the track closed for the night, the Pod Palais opened, and Richie Don banged out the tunes until the small hours.

Sunday morning broke and the queue of cars to get in the gate already hinted at the busy day ahead. Cars poured into the club display areas, and the Marangoni Fast Show came alive with the sight and sound of automotive awesomeness!

Over in the Autoglym Show Car Paddock, over 60 cars lined up to create a superb spectacle. From humble Fiestas and Polos through to the heady heights of Porsches and Lamborghinis, this was a tough competition to judge by anyone’s reckoning, but going on pure quality of execution (and not on tastefulness or money spent), the following cars took away the trophies:

Tony Scullion – Autoglym Show Paddock Best Of Show – Peugeot 206cc

We didn’t want to do it, but last year’s Best of Show winner went and took the crown again! It was quite simply the most complete car there, with every detail done to perfection. Interior, exterior, engine bay and underside were all faultless.

Jon Morley – Autoglym Show Paddock Top 3 – VW Polo

A subtle but beautifully-applied gold paintjob with an original choice of wheels made for a quality exterior, but the real jewel was the sumptuous interior, with Audi parts carefully upholstered with custom materials. Gorgeous.

Inti Van Richie – Autoglym Show Car Paddock Top 3 – Peugeot 206 GTI 180

Another Peugeot unfortunately, but another Peugeot that was far too good not to get a trophy! A brilliant high-gloss interior was colour matched to the gleaming orange exterior and a series of cool under-bonnet mods including a supercharger made this a stand-out car in the paddock.

Xquisite Auto – Honda Civic – Autoglym Show Paddock Top Feature Car

Big and bold in every way, this had a totally custom dash and comprehensively overhauled exterior. Even Mr Honda would have struggled to spot it was a Civic. Ingenious mods such as slide-out doors really showed the time and thought that had been put into this car.

Also off-track, the Miss Fast Show competition drew a big crowd, as the sexiest girls from the show put their dignity on the line for a chance to take away the coveted title of Miss Fast Show 2009. With rounds including gymnastics, balloon-popping, space-hopper bouncing and body-work washing, the crowd all got a chance to see what each girl could offer. After a hard-fought battle, the freezing cold but jubilant Tina from Newcastle was declared the winner… and rightly so… her space-hopper bounce was the stuff of legend.

More explosive action took place off-track, in the full programme of events taking place in the Live Action Arena. With some of the best UK drifters giving high-speed smoky displays, Terry Grant’s famous stunt show and car crushing madness from the Podzilla Monster Truck, there was something for everyone, and it would have been virtually impossible to see it all.

On track, the Run What Ya Brung competition continued over from Saturday, and the times continued to drop! The cool air combined with warm track was producing some great racing conditions, and the following classes have been decided as:

Class A – Front Wheel Drive

Daniel Deakins, Honda Civic Type R
13.8014 seconds @ 102.04mph

Class B – Front Wheel Drive with Turbo, Nitrous and/or Supercharger

Andrew Golding, Vauxhall Corsa
11.98 seconds @ 103.43mph

Class C – Rear Wheel Drive

Tom Williams, TVR Tuscan12.9445 seconds @ 113.73mph

Class D – Rear Wheel Drive with Turbo, Nitrous and/or Supercharger

Mark Salem, Mazda RX7 turbo
11.00 seconds @ 126.47mph

Class E – 4 Wheel Drive

Simon North, Subaru GL
10.81 seconds @ 131.77mph

Class F – “Muscle Car” 8+ cylinder engines

Matthew Jones, BMW M6
13.08 seconds @ 113.47mph

Class X – Non Road Legal

Martyn Sanger, Ford Mustang
10.99 seconds @ 121.23 mph

Congratulations to the winners, but thanks to everyone who took part, there were some crazy machines and excellent racing out on track at the show. We particularly liked the Nissan R35 GTR that was running 11.7s in totally standard form, and Marangoni’s super-Yaris that was running amazing 12.6’s proving Marangoni Mythos tyres really do the job.

Also taking place on track was the first round of the 2009 Euro Sports Compact series. This demo race class is for European cars with 6 cylinders or less, and produced some thrilling racing throughout Sunday. Andy Waite won the event with a series of brilliant 10.2 second runs in his Mk1 Golf. You can read the full report at www.eurosportscompact.co.uk.

Thanks to everyone who made it along to The Marangoni Fast Show, and continue to grow the event and support Santa Pod.

The Marangoni Fast Show 2009 @ Santa Pod

The first show of the season, and what a great start it was! We had nice weather, lots of new cars and some new clubs emerging – all in all a good weekend.


Both ollie and myself took photos, you can find a mix of them on the forum post, or head on over to the Maxxd.com Modified Car Gallery to view them all!