A Visit with the Queen of European Doorslammer RacingFirst a warning :)
This first page is so big it will take you at least an hour to go through it all....
I started driving at the age of 6, sitting on my dad's knee, by the time I was 10, I was zooming around fields on a little Bantam 125cc motorcycle. At 13, I used to sneak my mums little MG Midget out when she was out, and drive up and down the M4...... she was always complaining to my Dad that she must have a petrol leak as she could not understand where the gas was going...... under my right foot of course!
My Dad, bless him taught me so much from driving to laying bricks, he was a wonderful man, and I will always miss him, I just hope he can see how well his grandson is doing, following in his daughters footsteps with the need for speed.
I passed my motorcycle test first time when I was 16, my car test first time when I was 17.
I "rolled" my first car, which taught me respect for motor vehicle's.........
Subsequently had a little go at banger racing when I was around 18 - the boyfriends car of course.
The need for speed made me go into American Muscle, and I bought a '66 289 cubic inch Mustang (about 5500 cc), still not enough!
I was already "drag racing" with the local lads at a disused airfield off Yeading Lane in Hayes, but after nearly having a head on with a police car - I was of course in the right hand lane...... decided I had to do it properly before I either killed myself, someone else, or ended up in jail!
I was 23 when friends took me to Santa Pod Raceway, I saw a WOMAN, Motor Racing in those days was totally male dominated and women race car drivers were almost non-existant - yet here was Paula Murphy driving a Funny Car - hey if she can do it - well so could I!
Subsequently, several years later, I met Paula whilst I was in the US, doing promo and visiting sponsors out there, we became great friends in the short time we spent together, she was my mentor and the reason I started racing in the first place - I never looked back.
In October 1973, through a friend, I got my first drive - in a 9 second Pro-Stocker "Swartz Brothers", which had just been imported from the US - my first run in this beast was a 13.01 seconds over the standing 1/4 mile, it was awesome but totally amazing .
In the 13 years I raced, I won every National, Club and other Championships possible, many times over, I took the overall RAC MSA title three times, (should have been four, but the points got ....ed up - so ended up 2nd - booo) this has never achieved by anyone before or since!
I won Le Man's every year, Zandvoort every year, plus other gigs abroad, too many for me to remember, pulled only one red light.... that was in Sweden, qualified 2nd out of 160 cars, and put the cherry on in the first round of the finals...and I could have walked it through to the finals... can't always be perfect!
As the American term - I was the
"Winningest Drag Racer" in the sport!
- that was from 1978 to 1986........
Stop Press (July 2015) - Jay David, my eldest is back home with me
in Bearwood on the Sunny South Coast, great to have him home again.
Also Scott has finally got his own home, left the miserable, boring old SOB at last :)
The most important things in my life are my sons,
no matter whether they have done right or wrong, they are still and will always be my babies............
and I love them unconditionally...
Above - photo taken July 2017 with some of my Ragdoll Cats Show winnings
Photo Above - taken July 2017 in our new pool at home in Bearwood,
so hot - the pool is great
Especially with a nice cold beer :)
I was, I am informed, the first Independent Woman Race Car Driver in the Uk
I worked 3 jobs, 7 days a week to buy and pay for my race car and racing,
the only time I took off was to go racing.........
No one gave me a car to race, I was not a daughter, wife of anyone famous who was given a drive,
I did it on my own, with sheer determination !
Much to the disgust of the guys (not just in my class!)
I won everything Club, National, International Championships between 1978 and 1986
no one ha ever taken every single Championship in one year before or since,
I was the first DRIVER (male or female) to take all 5 National Titles in one year,
and I did this in 1979, 1981 and 1983,
I was too busy with my career and looking after my sponsors interests,
also making ends meet at home, to have this acknowledged in the Guiness Book of Records at the time,
I sincerely regret that now ........... however, always a winner, with my horses, ponies, siamese cats, and now again in 2017 I am actively breeding and showing Ragdoll Cats -
having achieved BEST IN SHOW at the last SIX shows - always a winner :)
Plus in 2015 became a "Lady" after inheriting some property from my Aunt.
To check out my stunning cats, just copy & paste any of the links below .......
www.snowpoms-ragdolls.com / www.snowpoms.com / www.snowpoms-ragdolls.co.uk
Thanks for the reply Stu,when I was a kid picking up the copy of "Custom Car" mag & seeing a woman on the centre spread,a part-time model & full-time kick-ass drag racer I thought it'l be a foregone conclusion that years later her hard work & support for the sport would have earned her some recognition for what she'd done.
I've met Sylvia & she's still so enthusiastic about the sport,I guess having her youngest son doing so well in the game helps keeps that fire lit,she's a great advocate for the sport,explaining to the layperson it's a little more than coming off the brake pedal & nailing the throttle.
She has piles of newspaper clippings,magazine interviews & mountains of VHS/DVD's in her library of thrills & spills to keep even a "normal" person interested for weeks in a new subject.
I'm now 50 yrs old & when I mention to Sunday racers I know Sylvia they ALL want to meet her!
She is 63 years old now & like most people with a god given talent, don't really recognise the fact of who they are in the eyes of others following,
I know this would be a boost to her self-esteem if she were inducted into the hall of fame & would have a positive effect on what she is doing now & in the future.
Yours Vince Sharp.
Above at Santa Pod 1973, my mentor, and now a dear friend, it was because of her that I went for it...
Paula was the first independent race car driver in the USA,
a truly wonderful lady, I will always love and respect her, she like me loves her animals :)
The Photo of me above was taken in a lay by on the A6 in February , about 7 am , freezing cold !
It was featured in the first issue of the News of the World "Sunday" Magazine .
Photo shoot for the Sunday Telegraph .
I turned down the offer of a lot of money to take my kit off for one of the major mens magazines ,
however i ended up with a nice spread in Penthouse - clothes on :) ,
plus the Sun news paper gave me a nice bit of coverage "Speedy Sylvia stays in gear"
all good for PR and my sponsors.
Professionalism is most important to me !
I put the capital B in BURN OUT - I WAS THE BURN OUT QUEEN.........
In 1979 - I was the first driver, (against the guys,) to take all major Championships in the Sport,
British Drag Racing & Hot Rod Association Street Division Champion
RAC Overall Championship,
RAC Divison 3 Championship,
National Drag Racing Club Overall Championship
National Drag Racing Club Street Division Champion
also the Sperex Ladies Award
I repeated this in 1981 and 1983, but it became difficult to attend all the Championship rounds
as I had to work hard for my Sponsors, often taking the car abroad,
Plus of course racing in Europe, Holland, France, Sweden & Germany etc.
However, I continued to take the majority of National and Club Championships until I retired in 1986,
but do remember 1979 was my first year of seriously winning everything,
until 1986 when I retired to have my sons....... Jay-David and Scott who has taken over the driving seat !
Below, my beloved Paul Rossi wheelie Dodge, I really loved this car, this was taken before Geof messed up the handling, the car became a nightmare to drive, and the more he adjusted it the worse it got ! - he was adjusting it the wrong way :( I was of course his guinea pig in this car and the next one..........
Anyone who remembers will agree the wheelstands got lower and lower as I was fighting to control the beast, but most importantly was to WIN !
Then a brief pink outing as Independent Express when the Sierra crashed on its first trip up the strip,so my crew worked their nuts off putting EVERYTHING back into the Dodge, and I mean EVERYTHING - it was one empty shell filling up another one, plus Carlo Gandolfi sprayed it overnight in the Independent Express colours for that one meeting.
Also Geof finally phoned Paul Rossi and found out he was adjusting the rear end the wrong way and my big baby went STRAIGHT AGAIN for the first time in 2 years :)
THEN i had to let go and let Joran take her to Sweden the car was again a pleasure to drive - back to what she was capable of rather than me having to fight it off the start line when she was diving to the right and was a serious threat to anyone in the right lane !
Then a brief pink outing as Independent Express when the Sierra crashed on its first trip up the strip,
so my crew worked their nuts off putting EVERYTHING back into the Dodge, and I mean EVERYTHING - it was one empty shell filling up another one,
plus Carlo Gandolfi sprayed it overnight in the Independent Express colours for that one meeting.
Geof finally figured out he was adjusting the rear end the wrong way
and the Dodge went STRAIGHT AGAIN for the first time in 2 years,
THEN i had to let go and let Joran take her to Sweden the car was again a pleasure to drive - back to what she was capable of - rather than me having to fight it off the start line,
it broke my heart to lose her then :(((((((((
Bringing home the silverware - life is all about achieving !
I loved racing in France, we made some great friends over the years here.
t me in the "Think Pink" sierra against Al O'Connor in Al's Gasser
This was lovely to receive and I will be sending him photo's for his "LEGENDS OF SPORT MUSEUM in Canda - thanks so much for the letter, I feel truly honoured.
Above , at the ACE CAFE London (2009) , with "All the Way Jay" and "Dave Blaze" a couple of male stripper friends , at the " Ladies Day "
Sylvia gets ready to lift the front wheels against Dave Collis in Frenzy
cars, guns and rock music, coming at ya babe !!
Motor Racing in those days was totally male dominated and women race car drivers were almost non-existant, yet here was Paula Murphy driving a Funny Car; hey if she can do it - well so could I! and I did, am glad I did Paula proud with my achievements, without her, who knows what I would have been doing instead!
Scot Hauser my youngest son, 1st yr adult, taking well earned trophies,
I am so proud of him, watch him - he will surely take my title as the "Winningest Drag Racer in the UK" and will be worthy of it :-)
Great 1st Season Scott, love Mum xxx
My baby boy in his 1st year of adult competition ....your mum is so proud of you xxx
Never Stop Playing
My Paintball "handle" was/is Powercat....
and I still have two of the best markers ever made ......
(left to right) Stu Bradbury, John Bennett, Keith Bartlett, Dave Lee Travis and me supposedly in the Hall of Fame (Ivan Sansom photo)
Here's hoping to be back on the track sometime in 2013.... Mopar Nationals, Santa Pod in July and Dragstalgia again at "the Pod" ......
Our move to Bedford Road, Rushden.
Card drawn by Geof's mum who was brilliant artist.
A christmas story photos
Saravanan meenakshi photo gallery
Telugu actress armpit hair photos
Wedding photo locations rochester ny
Knox jolie pitt photos
Elizabeth hurley photo gallery