Banger Champions head for Barbados Festival of Speed

Banger Champions head for Barbados Festival of Speed

 Sixteen purpose-built Micro Banger race cars left Portsmouth on the English south coast last Tuesday (April 5) on a Geest Line freighter heading for the Caribbean. They will be raced by some of the most successful - and most entertaining - stars of UK Banger Racing at the inaugural Barbados Festival of Speed at Bushy Park on May 8.

  The Champions of oval racing will join three-time Formula 1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton, former British Superbike Champion Tommy Hill and multiple British Supersport Champion Stuart Easton in making a spectacular high-speed contribution to the 50th Anniversary celebrations of the island's Independence.

  Formed in 2003, the Dreamers Banger Racing Team's Captain is Steve Anscombe, a 30-year veteran of the sport whose nickname is 'Cecil'. Second in the 1997 National Banger Racing World Championship - one crown that continues to elude him - he has won 13 national and regional titles. Using the skills learned in racing, he has developed a business as a stunt co-ordinator and driver in film and television, also a supplier of cars and equipment.

  The Dreamers were the subject of 'Banger Boys', an eight-part series on the History Channel in 2013, which followed them to venues up and down the UK, following their team battle with the Dreambusters. Then, last Tuesday, British network ITV launched a new reality programme titled Drive, in which eight broadcast celebrities will compete in various motor sport disciplines, until there is a Drive Champion.

  The first programme concentrated on Banger Racing, with the vehicles and competition co-ordination provided by Anscombe and his team. Based on Nissan Micras, the cars used in the ITV programme are similar to those now on their way to Barbados, which will remain in the island after BFoS as an addition to the facility's regular race meets.

  Through the team's Facebook page (Facebook/Thedreamersracing), Anscombe reported that loading went well at Portsmouth: "Sixteen cars, measuring 12ft each, and four 40ft containers meant double stacking every car . . . but we rocked it! Plus spares, engines, tools and two ramps for a ramp rollover."

  Alongside Anscombe, the Dreamers team also includes Darren 'The Cheat' Terry-Brand, winner of six titles, most recently the National Micro Banger Scottish Open last October, and Edward 'Turbo' Kennett, who won last year's National Micro World Cup and was the 2013 Rookie Banger World Champion. Among others making the trip are Reece 'Hobbit' Priestley, the 2015-16 Wimbledon Track Champion, former kart racer Craig 'Nippy' Hook, the 2015 Ipswich Track Champion, and Pete 'Bodja' Osborne, twice winner of the Entertainer of the Year Award.

  The nine-hour programme at the Barbados Festival of Speed will be packed with a broad cross-section of motoring and motor sport action on two and four wheels, also including Monster Truck and Stunt Bike stars from the USA and local and regional content, including the Suzuki Challenge Series. The family-friendly day will also feature music from the Barbados Defence Force Band, a parade of classic cars and a lunchtime show starring Rupee, plus other activities with a Caribbean twist.

  Gates will open at 8.00am, with the Opening Show starting an hour later. From then to the 6.00pm close, there will be something for everyone to enjoy. Almost non-stop on-track action will be complemented by a static display of classic cars, while the Festival Village will offer booths, displays and the best of West Indian food and refreshments.


Starting at Bds $50 (adults) and $25 (seven to 12 years) for General Admission, tickets for BFoS are now available on-line at and at the Bushy Park Circuit Office, also at Automotive Art Wildey, CS Pharmacy and Sol Redmans, Speightstown, Warrens and Wildey

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