Australia’s new national Top Fuel Champion is Perth’s Martin Stamatis, who claimed the title last weekend at Queensland’s Willowbank Raceway.
It was the perfect script; in the very last race of the 2009/2010 ANDRA Pro Series season, Stamatis was up against his team mate and three times champ Phil Read. It was a winner-take-all final, with the just a handful of points separating the two Auto One sponsored dragsters, the driver to hold their nerve and control their 7000 horsepower beasts would be crowned the Australian Top Fuel Champion.
Stamatis, the consummate professional, had not only lead the top fuel championship heading into the last round but had performed faultlessly right through the Winternationals event. It was his title for the taking and he didn’t disappoint.
Stamatis was dominant in the final, blitzing the quarter mile in 4.72 seconds and unfortunately for team mate, Phil Read, just couldn’t take up the challenge. In addition to clinching the title, Stamatis also claimed top qualifier, top speed and lowest elapsed time (ET) for the event – just to show it was no fluke.
Auto One’s CEO Peter Henry was on hand to be one of the first people to congratulate the likeable businessman from Perth – “Martin showed just how cool under pressure he is. It was an adrenalin-charged final and Martin did exactly what he needed to do. It was a great win for him and Jim Read Racing,” said Henry.
“Of course we had mixed feelings when it was Phil against Martin in the final. With Auto One having the naming rights sponsorship of Phil’s dragster, it was always going to be hard to pick a favourite but we are absolutely delighted for Martin in winning his maiden title.”
Auto One has a solid footprint in Western Australia with 27 of their 70 national stores based in the west and according to Peter Henry, this is something that makes Stamatis’ achievement even more rewarding.
“Auto One is a major backer of the ANDRA Pro Series. Our relationship and investment extends past the two top fuel race cars but as Major Associate sponsors of the series, we feel very strongly about promoting the sport of drag racing across the country.
“With Auto One’s strong presence in WA and now with the Top Fuel Champ coming from Perth, we will use the next 12 months making sure we continue to lift the profile of Martin and ANDRA Pro Series in the west. This is one way we can reward his and Jim Read Racing’s great efforts this season,” Henry concluded.