Bench Racing Update

First the sad news. Owing to health problems, Motorsport safety pioneer Bill Simpson will be unable to travel to Britain for next weekend’s British Drag Racing Hall of Fame Gala, where he was due to receive the Mopar Performance Lifetime Achievement Award and participate in the afternoon’s Bench Racing session.

On a happier note, Bench Racing will still feature a distinguished line-up of American drag racing luminaries eager to entertain their British audience. Doug Herbert – former Top Fuel star, road safety campaigner and scion of a famous drag racing family – and Dan Richins – who drove his Iron Horse Top Fuel Dragster into the Cragar Five-Second Club in 1973 – will be the new faces on the panel, while ex-NHRA Vice President Steve Gibbs, Rat Trap Fuel Altered racer Ron Hope and raconteur extraordinaire ‘Waterbed’ Fred Miller have already lit up previous Bench Racing sessions with their wit and insights. The session will be led by veteran racing and hot-rodding commentator and broadcaster Bob Beck.

Past Bench Racing audience members will already be familiar with the often uproarious, ‘Chat Show with the Legends’ format. For newcomers considering a visit, it’s a unique opportunity to hear and meet leading US figures of the sport in convivial surroundings here on home soil, without having to cross the Atlantic for the privilege.

Bench Racing is open-house. All are welcome. If you are a guest attending the evening’s Hall of Fame Gala, it makes an exciting start to your weekend. If you just want to attend the session itself, it’s a fine way to spend a couple of Saturday lunchtime hours.

And it’s all free. Admission and parking are free of charge. The time: 12.30pm. The date: Saturday 23rd November. The place: Oatlands Park Hotel, Oatlands Drive, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 9HB.

The 2018 Gala Awards Dinner is almost sold out but you can make a reservation by email at or by telephone at 01933 279102. Tickets which include table wine are priced competitively at £70.00 each. The rates for hotel rooms are £115.00 for double rooms and £94.00 single which includes breakfast and VAT as well as parking. On receiving your reservation you will be given the procedure to book rooms.