Number 3 and the team are all now safely back home after our visit to Hockenheimring, Germany for the NitrOlympX show, 8th – 10th August.
Myself and Horace travelled by road with No3 on tow which got quite a few admiring glances and plenty of photos from the passing traffic. We eventually got to the track late last Wednesday and after unloading the car in the pit garage, all we wanted was a good night’s sleep at our hotel. On Thursday, Richard arrived so we completely cleaned the car which had been drenched through. After a thorough clean, we went through the car and got most of the prep done ready for Friday.
Friday proved a frustrating day as we had asked and expected to be able to do a ‘test’ run on the track. We got down to the pairing lanes at just gone 6pm and were all ready for action until we got cancelled due to the noise curfew. All the team were slightly disappointed as we wanted to be able to give the car a proper ‘test’ to make sure there weren’t any issues before our big ‘Night Show’ on Saturday evening.
Saturday came and the wet forecasts that we had heard all week never appeared (thankfully). We thought we might be able to get a mid morning ‘test’ run in but again this didn’t happen. The next we knew we were asked to run side by side with DragonHunter at the finale of the night show at 10pm. As we sat in the pairing lanes, the grandstands were heaving and the noise was immense. It’s been nearly 10 years since I was last at Hockenheimring with No 2 but the crowds were just as amazing as they always were. DragonHunter and No 3 both put on a great startline show and it was a steady first run for No 3 over 1000 ft before I shut off. DragonHunter red lit which meant it was a comfortable win for the Brits.
After the run, I was confident that I could easily run the 1/4 mile as the track and conditions were good. On Sunday, we were asked to end the day with another side by side run with DragonHunter. I knew the car was performing well so I was cautious not to red light and took my time. Comfortably the car did the 1/4 mile in 6.10sec /437kph (271mph) against DragonHunter’s 7.20sec /364kph (226mph)
Myself and the team all had a great return trip to Hockenheim and I must thank Jerry Lackey, Race Director at Hockenheim, for inviting us to the show.
There are plenty of photos and videos on our Facebook page and we’ll be uploading some on here in due course. So check out our little trip via https://www.facebook.com/pages/FireForce-Jet-Funny-Cars/164893953568789?fref=ts
In just under a weeks time, we shall be setting off on the long road trip to Hockenheim ready for the NitrOlympX show from 8th – 10th August. The whole team are very much looking forward to returning to Hockenheimring after nearly 10 years and we hope that the German crowd will enjoy our performance.
It was an honour to be asked back by Jerry Lackey, NitrOlympX Race Director, and although he has been chasing us for a few years, this year everything fell in to place and we were delighted to be able to accept his invite.
We will keep regular updates and photos during our visit on our Facebook page so watch this space.
The FIA Main Event from 23rd – 26th May 2014 was a mixed weekend for most race teams including FireForce. Most of the weekend was a wash out and we only got a couple of runs on Sunday 25th May.
On the plus side, we unveiled the new St George and the Dragon themed paintwork on the new dragster, Number 5! For the first time, we increased the distance and managed to run a successful 1000ft in 6.94 seconds ay 191mph. There are still a few tweaks to be made and I will do some more testing over the new few months but this is a promising start so far.
The new dragster seems to be a hit with our fans and we have received lots of great feedback via our Facebook page and in person. Again I would like to thank Andy and Tom at Custom Painthouse for their hard work and skill on the panels.
Once some dates have been confirmed for Number 5, we will let you all know but for now, thanks to you all for your continued support.
Photos courtesy of Dave ‘DJ’ Jones
This week I collected the completed jet dragster panels ready to unveil the new livery at The Main Event, Santa Pod Raceway, this weekend. Tom and Andy Scott from Custom Painthouse have again done a fantastic job on the new paintwork in record time. These guys did the livery on Number 4 and their skills are second to none. Their stand and vehicles at TruckFest Peterborough was a massive hit and the guys deserve every credit for their hard work. Check out their website or Facebook page www.custompainthouse.co.uk
The completed jet dragster in all its glory will be unveiled shortly but here are a few tasters of what’s to come!!
We are pleased to announce that FireForce 5 Jet Dragster will be running at the FIA European Drag Racing Championships -Round 1 from 23rd-26th May held at Santa Pod Raceway. The paintwork for the body should also (hopefully) be revealed. Our brilliant friends at Custom Painthouse are busy working on the panels as we speak so stay tuned for more information. Don’t forget to check out our official Facebook page for updates FireForce Jet Funny Cars.
The team are pleased to announce that the first runs in the new jet dragster, Number 5, were successful. There have been a lot of late nights, early mornings and head scratching with Number 5. A persistent fuel leak occurred on many test fire ups and hindered the progress of the project on more than one occasion.
Regrettably, we didn’t make our run scheduled for Friday 18th April at Festival of Power due to this leak and as much as we hate letting the public down, safety will always come first. Thankfully, a late night on Friday meant that the problem was temporarily fixed for Saturday.
On Saturday, the dragster steadily reached approximately 70mph and although it didn’t break any records, it was a successful test run down the track with an early shut off and chutes deployed. For the second outing, it was a side by side run against Split Second. This run, again, wasn’t about settings any records but managing to increase the speed and give the team an idea of what the dragster is capable of. A steady 120mph was enough to please us this time round.
The next step is to get the body painted and then really see what this machine can do!
With three events under our belt for 2014, FireForce 3 is running consistently as always. A couple of early shut-offs and windy conditions have seen some 6.0 second runs but 5.9 runs remain the norm.
Festival of Power at Santa Pod Raceway over the Easter weekend will play host to side by side jet runs for a second year. Again, FireForce 3 will go head to head with Dragon Hunter so hopefully we can retain our wins for the 2nd year.
With both solo and side by side runs, the schedule is quite tight so we hope to run without issues.
Hopefully, we will be able to unveil Number 5, the Jet Dragster this weekend and get a first run down the track completed successfully.
So, see you at the track!
Martin & the team.
With the end of 2013 in sight, it’s time to reflect on another year for the FireForce team.
The year started out wet and our first outing, The Fast Show, proved to bring both rain and snow…not an ideal start.
The new addition of Number 5 – Jet Dragster was set to be unveiled at Festival of Power but suffered some issues which led to us being unable to do any test runs. Then, we managed to fire No 5 up on the startline but couldn’t risk launching as there was still some problems and in a private fire up, No 5 suffered some damage caused by a small fuel leak. During whatever spare time I get, much of 2013 has been spent on trying to fix these ongoing and frustrating issues with No 5……hopefully 2014 will see the successful demo of this jet dragster.
FireForce Number 3, as always, continues to run consistently and has seen the team through another jam packed season.
Number 3 and the team have not long returned from Malta, where we were invited to do some demo runs at a charity based event ‘Paqpaqli Ghall-Istrina’, held at Malta International Airport. All proceeds went to The Malta Community Chest Fund run by the President of Malta. We had three shows with tight turn around times so there wasn’t much time to look around the rest of the event.
We were asked to do a prolonged vapour and flame show ending with a launch so the crowds all had the chance to see the car in action. All the shows seemed to be popular and well received and the pit area was always busy. After we loaded the car ready for it’s return, we managed to grab a few days sightseeing and enjoyed some December sunshine!!
The team will have some down time during the Christmas period but it will be all hands on deck in 2014. With Number 4 and Number 5 in the pipeline, it’s bound to be another busy year.
As always, thanks to our supporters in 2013 and I hope to see you all in 2014.
Happy New Year
Tuesday 29th October 2013
The FireForce team are extremely honoured to have been invited to Malta to participate at the annual charity event, Paqpaqli Għall-Istrina, on 8th December 2013.
The President of Malta, George Abela, officially launched the eighth edition of Malta’s annual popular motoring event, which will be held within the grounds of the Malta International Airport and Lufthansa Tecknik.
Paqp0aqli Għall-Istrina is organised by a team on behalf of The Malta Community Chest Fund together with Tonio Darmanin and the Malta Motorsport Federation. The aim behind this event is to raise funds for L-Istrina.
We have been in talks for a few months but can now officially announce our involvement in the event. FireForce 3 will be one of the main highlights of the event (we hope) and all of the team are very much looking forward to wowing the Maltese crowd.
Our last show at Santa Pod is this weekend at Fireworks Frenzy and then it will be all hands on deck to get FF3 ready and loaded in to the container ready for shipping.
We will keep you all updated via our website and Facebook page over the next few weeks.
For more information on Paqpaqli Għall-Istrina, please visit their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/PaqpaqliGhallIstrina
2013 brings more ventures and changes for the FireForce team starting with the launch of our ‘New Look’ website. Hopefully, this updated site will prove as popular with our fans as the older site and should enable us to post quick updates about our news and events.
There is also a new site for the Fire Safety equipment and as European Distributor for DJ Safety, I will happily advise and assist racers with any questions about their Fire Safety needs. Please check out the new site for more information on www.martinhillfiresafety.co.uk
Happily, the launch of the new site coincides with some exciting news………………….
Over the last few months, we have added to our stable of Jet vehicles and can now reveal that at the FIA Main Event (24th – 27th May) we will unveil our Jet Dragster otherwise known as FireForce JD5!!!
Originally, we hoped to have the dragster ready for Festival of Power, but as is so often the way with these things, it wasn’t to be. So although the body and paintwork won’t be completely finished, we aim to debut on the ¼ mile and at least get some safe and successful runs under our belt.
Stay tuned for more news……………
PS Our thanks to Nigel Holland for creating this new site and also many congratulations on the success of his book ‘The 50 List.’