Bangers and a smash on menu for Barnham motor ace

Tom Grantham's banger-racing car on its way home...
Tom Grantham's banger-racing car on its way home...

Tom Grantham from Barnham, racing under his racing nickname of Leadfoot, competed in the Banger world championshipat the Foxhall Raceway in Suffolk.

He had qualified directly after a very busy season of racing at both the Arlington and Aldershot raceways.

With drivers coming from ther Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and most of the major small oval raceways across England, Grantham was going to need a touch of luck to take the title. After the last chance races that preceded the world final, a total of 60 cars lined up to do battle for the gold roof displayed by the world champion.

Grantham, based at the Flint Garage, came on track to draw his grid position in his ultra-smart and fully sign-written Honda Civic saloon, the preferred choice of car for banger racing. From the draw he picked out grid position 46 from 60, in the final third of the grid.

The race was frantic with cars going in all directions and soon crashes and pile-ups occurred.

At the halfway point of the 20-lap race Granthame had avoided most of the big pile-ups and had avoided being spun out by a rival. He was inside the top ten and was trying to catch the leading cars some distance ahead.

Grantham was forced to get close to the leaders to push some of the back-marking cars out of the way. His Honda got some damage and with just a few laps to go, the Civic lost power for a brief period. Leadfoot’s chance of taking the world title was gone.

Some of the other cars managed to get past the Civic and although Granthamwas soon back up to full racing speed, the race was near its end.

Mark Almedia, who races regularly at Arlington and Aldershot and lives near Eastbourne, was in another Honda Civic and took advantage as the long-time leading car was dramatically taken out by the driver in second place, allowing him to come through and take the title.

Grantham finished a creditable 14th place.

The cars then competed in two allcomers’ races. In the second, Grantham took a well-earned third place.

He will now compete in a few meetings at the Wimbledon Stadium in south London over the Winter before qualifying for the 2016 world final starts around Easter, back at Arlington.

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