PICTURES: 21-year-old from Burgess Hill wins caravan demolition derby

Winner Natalie Smith
Winner Natalie Smith

The only woman driver taking part in a caravan demolition derby event in Angmering on Monday finished in first place.

The Caravan Extravaganza, which took place at the Oval Raceway in Angmering, was the first time 21-year-old Natalie Smith, of Leylands Park, Burgess Hill had ever taken part in a contact race.

The caravans in action

The caravans in action

The five lap contest sees caravans race around the track and crash into one another.

The last caravan standing wins.

Natalie said beating the 13 other drivers competing ‘felt amazing’.

“I didn’t expect to win. It was a shock to the system,” she said.

I didn’t expect to win. It was a shock to the system

Natalie Smith

“I was quite nervous, but as the racing went on I got the buzz for it and the adrenaline kicked in.”

After being encouraged to take part by her partner, Luke Chandler, she said she would ‘definitely’ race again.

Jim Hazelgrove, who has owned the race course for more than 20 years, said the event attracted ‘a good crowd for Easter Monday’.

Over the day, 31 races took place in total.

Winner Natalie Smith

Winner Natalie Smith

Visitors also enjoyed a car crash derby and a hot rod race, where drivers reach speeds of up to 85mph, which drew some of the country’s best short circuit drivers including the infamous Outlaw Hot Rods.

The bank holiday derby marked the reopening of the race course, following a two-month refurbishment which saw a new concrete course installed along with a new entrance.

“It’s looking really nice,” said Mr Hazelgrove.

Another caravan demolition derby will be held on the next bank holiday Monday in less than two weeks’ time on May 1.

Caravan Derby

Caravan Derby

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Caravan Derby race

Caravan Derby race

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