The Organized Chaos of Banger Racing
Unlike most auto racing events where competitors do all they can to avoid one another on the track as they speed toward the checkered flag, in Banger Racing colliding with competitors is a winning strategy. The intention is to wreck competing cars, maybe preventing them from crossing the finish line at all or at the very least, to slow them down significantly. Banger Racing is particularly popular in Great Britain, Belgium, Ireland and the Netherlands, with fans turning out in droves to support events that feature old scrap cars competing on tarmac or dirt, oval or figure-eight racetracks.
To add some spice to an already fiercely competitive sport, some Banger Racing events feature cars towing trailers or caravans, significantly increasing the element of risk. Not only do drivers have to contend with the constant threat of being bumped off the track, but they have to deal with driving at high speed while towing a trailer/caravan which can already throw a car off balance. Add to this the risk of the trailer being bumped by competitors, and making it to the finish line safely becomes a real challenge.
Other events in the Banger Racing arena include Siamese Banger Racing, so named because two cars are chained together, while being independently driven; and Train Racing, where three cars in a row are joined with the front car having the engine and a driver, the middle car unmanned and the car at the back with a driver operating the brakes. There are also different rules of engagement depending on the skill and experience of drivers, with rookie drivers having minimum contact with competitors and more experienced drivers participating in all out war on the racetrack.
While some may compare Banger Racing to a Demolition Derby event, the objectives are quite different. In a Demolition Derby the objective of the four or five competitors is to render opponents’ vehicles useless, with the winner being the last car still able to move. With Banger Racing, there may be as many as fifty competitors gridded across the track. There is generally a rolling start for the race and there are always a predetermined number of laps to complete with rules applying to skill level. Some Banger Racing events may end off with a Demolition Derby, but by then the participating cars have served their purpose on the Banger Racing arena.