Saturday 17th April 1976
Over 50,000 people attended Santa Pod’s 10th anniversary Easter meet starring the legendary Don Garlits in his 1975 car, the Swamp Rat#21 fueler. For the first time in Europe there was an eight car top Fuel entry. Garlits had mechanical problems and qualified no.5 with a 6.89/215mph. No.1 qualifier was Peter Crane in the ‘Stormbringer’ with a 6.21/215 mph pass. Garlits and Crane met in the first round of eliminations, Garlits pulled a red and Crane became the first person outside the U.S. to run into the fives with a 5.97 run. Clive Skilton beat Crane in the semi finals but Crane still managed a 6.03 to back up his record. After the meeting Cranes car was subjected to long and exhaustive tests to make sure that everything was 100% legal and there was no device or mechanism to cheat. Santa Pod had offered a £1000 payout for the first five second run and they carried out the tests before paying up.