BUG JAM 30 - The original and best VW fest FRIDAY 22nd / SUNDAY 24th JULY 2016 AT SANTA POD RACEWAY
The original and best VW festival is back for another year. Featuring 5 Music Arenas, Drag Racing, Run What Ya Brung Public Track Time, Show & Shine, Comedy, Traders, Stunt Displays, Jet Car, Autojumble, Funfair and much, much more! Keep checking this site for all the latest event news as it's announced.
2016 details coming soon.
BUG JAM 29 REPORT, PHOTOS & VIDEO
View photos from Bug Jam 29 on the Facebook Gallery. A full report and highlights video will be posted shortly.
BUG JAM 29 HIGHLIGHTS VIDEO
BUG JAM 29 REPORT
The 29th edition of the original and best VW Fest was another action packed weekend of VW themed fun and frolics from start to finish and many of us have even ended up going home with a healthy glow to our complexion too! Thanks to all of you that began your weekend extra early on Thursday with one of our early arrival passes – it really helps us with our traffic flow and reduces queuing for access throughout the whole weekend and of course it allows you to get settled in, ready to begin enjoying the show on Friday!
The track opened on Friday afternoon for RWYB with plenty of VWs hitting the strip to refine their ¼ mile times. The RWYB with competition concluded before the National Drag Racing commenced on Saturday and resulted in the following winners:
A - Aircooled Cars
12.0106s @ 107.27mph
B - Aircooled Vans
B79 Chris Lambourne
13.4656s @ 111.78mph
C - Watercooled Cars
12.4545s @ 119.62mph
D - Watercooled Vans
Michael John Wood
15.8304s @ 88.21mph
X - Non Road Legal & All Non VW
10.5167s @ 136.86mph
Notably, class B winner Chris Lambourne in his rapid splitscreen bus had a score to settle as he raced BTCC star Hunter Abbott and his Audi A4 Touring car. Chris was pipped to the post by Rob Austin in the sister car in 2014 last year and to the crowds delight, Chris wasn’t going to be beaten on this occasion as he raced over the finish line ahead of the race spec. Audi.
Martin Hill put in a couple of storming passes in the FireForce 5 Jet Dragster before unfortunately doing a little bit of engine damage so the last time we saw him for the weekend was travelling through the finish line at 280mph having covered the ¼ mile in an incredible 5.22 seconds which was near on personal best territory.
Following the RWYB was the annual human powered race and we have never seen so many people running, riding, skating, towing, pushing and kart wheeling (yes kart wheeling!) up and down a drag strip anywhere. Congratulations to the winners of each of our categories who were, Most Imaginative Entry -
The Wacky Racers, Fastest Bicycle -
Scott Gerrard, Fastest Runner -
Aaron Kelly and Fastest Skate -
Massive thanks to everyone that took part in the 800m race!
After all of those fun and frolics, the serious boys and girls came out for their session of track in a round of the National Drag Racing Championships for a number of classes. The European Funny Car Series was at the forefront of the race classes making their debut at Bug Jam and the crowd were treated to a few 4 second passes from these nitro burning monsters. A couple of notable performances from the “race cars” on site for the weekend came from our electric powered machines in the form of Fifth Gears Jonny Smith and his good friend Sam Young. Jonny in his well-documented Flux Capacitor (Enfield 8000) has been desperate to break into the 11’s for several weeks now and this weekend he smashed that target with an awesome 11.7 at 110mph. A few seconds quicker was Sam Young who reset his own record with a mighty 9.35 second pass. The weekend was also littered with 7 second passes from the Street Eliminator and Outlaw Anglia gangs and there was some incredibly tight racing in the VWDRC and Sportsman ET too.
Congratulations to the winners and runners up from all classes who were as follows:
European Funny Car Series
Winner Gordon Smith
Runner Up Kevin Kent
Topspeed Automotive Street Eliminator
Winner Stu Williams
Runner Up Jon Webster
Winner Cliff Griffin
Runner Up Colin Millar
Winner Carl Goldsmith
Runner Up Sam Chisholm-Brown
Winner Ross Chisholm-Brown
Runner Up Paul Herbert
Winner Craig Wright
Runner Up Andy Dibley
The music line-up this year was nothing short of massive and the crowds were not disappointed. Both headliners on the main stage had the whole place rocking with Hayseed Dixie on Friday and the awesome Pigeon Detectives on Saturday. Away from the main stage there was something for everyone with a silent disco, Cream, Mystic Crew, Miami Calling, Green Haze, Jenson D Grover, the Indie Tones and loads more.
The comedy tent had the audience in fits and giggles throughout the weekend and it was the noise next door who stole the show and received a great big Bug Jam stand in ovation!
As usual the show paddock was full to the rafters on both the Saturday and Sunday with the awesome Rust & Rat and Show & Shine displays respectively.
The Rust and Rat is always an extremely difficult one to judge as it’s a little subjective. After much deliberation, the judges concluded that the best vehicles in the paddock were as follows:
In the outstanding features box on his form, Daniel had simply written “Free Beer”. Whilst the bar install in the back was a contributing factor, the whole interior of this Polo was just plain awesome and included what looked like a park bench as the front seats!
Best Off Road
VW Beetle Thing
Julian’s 58 thing is known to us having picked up trophies in the past but this year the car was quite literally head and shoulders above the rest as he rolled round to the arena on some enormous tractor wheels on the rears!
Freddies 51 bug was rolling with a 9” narrow beam whilst being slammed to the deck. It was just plain awesome.
64 Panel Van
Jasons entry sheet stated that this van was rescued all the way from Alabama where it had trees growing out of it in a swamp! Thankfully Jason gave it a new lease of live and although it might look quite inconspicuous from the outside the interior was pristine!
Best Other Aircooled
Marcs 59 Ghia simply ticked all the right boxes – there’s not a lot more we need to say!
Anyone with the audacity to create a rat look people carrier is worthy of a trophy!
Allis Chalmers Model B
OK, so it’s not strictly a VW, but this tractor (yes tractor) came packing a VW powered punch with a 1200 beetle engine installed and we all thought it was pretty sweet!
Best of Show
Andy’s rod was chopped and slammed and a distinct lack of paint and all of the judges agreed with his notes of “Just Bad Ass”.
The Show & Shine was a real tough one to call on a number of categories and the best of show award was no exception – to the point where the judges changed their minds a number of times in the build up to presentations. Eventually, decisions were made and the following walked home with awards:
Best Cal Look
67 VW Bug
Damo’s bug looked as tough as nails and had the power to boot with a 2276cc 200hp motor under the decklid.
Best Resto Cal
54 VW Oval Bug
Marks bug featured full air ride allowing him to drop the car right on the floor with plenty of chrome!
67 VW Beetle
Sams is one of those cars that’s not quite in your face but you need a close look to appreciate the work and details that have gone into the car. One mod that’s a little unusual is the de-seaming!
Jamie Schueler & Louise Brown
T5 Caravelle Shuttle
This tidy T5 featured a custom wood themed interior and it just worked so well with the toffee brown paint work!
Sams polo was in with a shout at a couple of other prizes but the pristine green paintwork was enough for him to walk home with this one.
58 VW Beetle
Peter’s beautiful beetle was on another level when it comes to originality and here are just a few points noted on his entry sheet – all original panels, never welded, interior is 100% original, the cars never been off the floor plan AND it’s only done 42,000 miles!
Darren Bates & Ann Gardner
Mk 2 Golf
The paint on this golf was what caught your eye at first but once that had drawn you in you could find a supercharger, air ride, stretched wheels and more!
Best Other Aircooled
This Australian spec notchback was subtle but built to perfection in all areas, the red interior was beautiful.
Best Off Road
Meyers Manx Beach Buggy
Pauls buggy was definitely a contender for best of show but just missed out. Luckily this years show & shine was held under beautiful sunshine which really brought out the awesome blue flake paint job on this buggy. The engine was also immaculate and there were some really neat little touches all round right down to the surfboard on top.
Best Late Van
Sir Clive Ellis
This Valkyrie van had everything from the exterior to the wheels but it was the interior that made this van really stand out from the rest.
Best Bay Window
72 VW Bay Window
This grey bay featured ghosted check paintwork on the sides with checker roof, full custom interior and a beautiful dash.
58 Single Cab Transporter
This Californian import came from a family background and was pristine where ever you looked.
This “Chimay” themed bug had it all on show at Bug Jam and rightly so because the car is stunning!
The judges were unanimous in deciding where this award should go this year as this sea sand fastback was simply beautiful!
Best of Show
Mk 4 Golf
This golf had people drooling over it all day long and was rightfully awarded the best of show trophy and we believe it’s the first time a watercooler has walked away with the best of show award at Bug Jam so massive congrats to Darren! The colour is actually a 1958 vw colour used on beetles and it features a Porsche leather interior with air ride and some pretty rare wheels!
Thanks to everyone who brings their vehicles into the paddock to display for us, we know that they form a massive part of Bug Jam and we know you all love to wander round and appreciate one another’s pride and joy.
This year we ditched the computer game competitions in the Fuelers bar and replaced them with what proved to be a popular couple of slightly more sporty(!?) games in the form of table tennis and air hockey! The table tennis tournament was up first and there were some great players getting involved and some, to put it quite plainly, drunks having a go too. It was first to 11 and a mouth watering final was set between what were undoubtedly the 2 best players in it. Well Done to Aidan for taking home the first ever Bug Jam table tennis trophy!
Air Hockey was equally as popular and there were some pretty decent players involved here too. The final saw Mitchell Hulse triumph and walk away with the trophy.
Winner Mitchell Hulse
The Live Action Arena was running almost all weekend to some pretty enormous crowds. As well as the old favourite line-up of Lee Bowers, Terry Grant, Swamp Thing and Podzilla there was a late edition to the show in the form of Ricardo Domingos all the way over from Portugal who had a bit of everything in his performance with an insane hayabusa powered smart car and motor and quad bike stunts.
The Cool Flo boys kept us all entertained in the adrenaline zone with their bmx and skate shows and thanks to them for bringing along a couple of sweet buses too!
Bug Jam Got Talent was eventful as always with some very impressive singers and musicians couple with dancers, gymnasts and a drummer. This years title was awarded to little 6 year old Jack Fitchett for his awesome break dancing. He’s a star for the future for sure!
Bug Jam's Got Talent
Winner Jack Fitchett
So that’s it for another year so we’d just like to take this opportunity to thank you all for coming along and bringing your VW’s year on year. You came, you saw, you raced, you partied and a fab time was had by all. That’s 29 Bug Jams done and dusted – who’d have thought it! Keep visiting this page regularly for updates on the big 30th party next year, we have every intention of celebrating in style. And guess what? You’re all invited!
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