First time winners reach the top of the mountain

This article brought to you by:

Titles were decided and Champions were crowned at the 2014 Australian Nationals at Sydney Dragway this past weekend.

The final round of the Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship was action packed with tight, close racing as the Championship drama unfolded.

Competition Eliminator was a fight between Alistair McClure and Craig Geddes with both advancing past the first round and on course to meet in the final.


McClure reached the final securing the Competition Eliminator Championship in what was his first season chasing the points from Western Australia including two class changes throughout the season. 

Greg Leahy would play the helping hand defeating Geddes but when it came to the final, a tight, almost heads up battle given the close indexes saw Leahy defeat McClure to claim a second Australian Nationals title. 

“They (multiple Nationals wins) are all good, they are all fantastic,” said Leahy. 

“And what a surprise, we banged the blower in the second round and with Paul Shackleton and the crew’s help we managed to get it back together. What a day.”

New Competition records were set by Lyle Gilmore with a new CC/AA mile per hour record of 199.46 mph, Peter Pisalidis set a new AA/APIA speed of 211.23 mph, new 2014 Champion Alistair McClure reset the ET record for BB/FCA at 6.394 and Craig Geddes reset both ends of the E/DA records with a 7.414 ET at 177.09 mph.


Jake Chaisty, son of two-time Super Stock Champion Geoff Chaisty, won the Championship battle with Mario Barbon by advancing to the final on a solo after Barbon red lit in his semi final with eventual Nationals winner Clint George.

That sent Chaisty’s father leaping into the air in celebration after a huge effort to gain maximum points by winning in Perth and taking advantage of the 50% travel bonus for competing at the Desert Nationals in Alice Springs.

Racing at Sydney Dragway for the first time, Chaisty navigated past Fred Soleiman, Jim Ioannidis and then Chris Soldatos when he wasn’t able to show, however he met a stout Clint George in the final who claimed victory in the final.


“It’s unreal, couldn’t be better,” said George. “We worked really hard for it and put a lot of effort into it the last few years, we’re really happy.

“We qualified number 10. We honestly didn’t think we had a chance. We were down the ladder, then we pulled it back, changed a couple of things and it all came together in the end.”

Super Stock records to fall were the A/AP ET and speed records reset at 7.024 and 196.59 mph by Shane Mroan while Chaisty pushed the H/MSA records further to 9.262 and 145.96 mph.


Ross Smith completed a Western Australian trifecta by taking out the Competition Bike Championship on a ride to the semi finals.

There he met Peter Everett with a -.104 red light the difference allowing Everett to advance to the final against Daryn Schuster without hurting his index.


Everett could not be beat taking home the Nationals trophy on a 9.699 ET on a 9.99 index while adding new records for ET and speed under the D/SB class with a 9.679 and 139.82 mph.


In Super Compact Phillip Karpathios took out new Champion Dominic Rigoli and top qualifier Po Tung to reach the final against Rod Harvey.

Harvey is known for always pushing into world record territory but on this occasion he pushed too far to turn on the red by -.011 sending Karpathios to victory on a 7.677 with a 7.67 index.


The Supercharged Outlaws Championship picture was topsy turvy all day as Doina Day and Chris Van’t Hof met in the final for the title as Mark Kuhn, Justin Russell, Ryan Van Dyk, Jake Donnelly, Paul Stephen, Rodney Hansen and defending Champion Luke Marsden all fell by the wayside.

Day and Van’t Hof came from 70 and 80 points down respectively on Kuhn to meet each other for the Championship and the Australian Nationals title in a winner takes all match up.

Doina Day was first out the gate and held off a hard charging Van’t Hof with a precise 6.908 on a 6.90 on the from a 6.690 on the 6.65 dial in.


Modified eliminations were a tense affair for Championship leader Shane Wynd who watched from the sidelines as his title rival and Round 2 opponent Jasmine Ryan advanced deep into proceedings.

Ryan needed to win the event to claim the Championship but Kelly Bettes would hand the Australian number 1 to Wynd as Ryan was eliminated by Bettes at the semi final stage.


Bettes then went on to claim the Nationals crown defeating Jenny Petrie with a 7.502 second pass on the 8.41 dial in from a break out 8.410 effort by Petrie.


Daniel Morris and Michael Little negotiated round after round to reach the final in Super Sedan where Morris added the Gold Christmas Tree to the Silver he picked up by winning the Benaraby Nationals last month.

Morris won the day on an 8.274 on the 8.26 dial in from Little who posted a 9.529 on the 9.50.


After claiming the Modified Bike Desert Nationals title in his first ever ANDRA Championship event back in July, Bryan Finn went all the way to the final of the Australian Nationals in just his third Championship event.

Finn’s fairy-tale came to an end in the final as Matthew Hunt earned his first ANDRA Christmas Tree with a winning 9.301-second pass on the 9.24 dial in.

Earlier in the day both David Carroll and Edgell Mallis were eliminated in Round 2 but Carroll’s 20-point gap was enough to win his first ever Australian Championship.


In Super Street Kylie Tanner’s loss to Robert Winterburn in the second round allowed Joe Jurkovic to win the Australian Super Street Championship thanks to a win over Belinda Welch.

He continued until the quarter finals where he met defending Champion Carl Taylor on a quest for three Australian Nationals titles in a row.


Unfortunately ‘Chevy’ Taylor red lit by -.007 to hand Robert Winterburn the victory on a near perfect 11.292 on the 11.29 dial in.


Toby Austin won the Australian Junior Dragster title for the very first time advancing all the way to the semi finals where he was ousted by Eden Ward.
Eden’s sister Maella joined him for a family affair in the final and it was older brother Eden who won on a 7.964 on the 7.96 from Maella’s break out 8.644 on the 8.65.


Last but not least Matt Forbes wrapped up back-to-back Super Gas Championships but his round win streak came to an end at the hands of Jake Culmone in Round 2.


Culmone went on to face a -.014 red lighting Simon Isherwood in the final to claim his first Australian Nationals title on a 9.889 break out effort.

This weekend brought an end to the Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship for 2014 with the new season to pick up again in January 2015.


Aeroflow Performance Parts Catalogue

Drag News Magazine