John Zappia’s season took a turn for the better on Saturday night at Perth Motorplex with a runner up result at the 49th annual Goldenstates, the second round of the Australian Top Doorslammer Championship.
Zappia’s Dananni Hotshots/Fuchs Lubricants Monaro returned to a more consistent version, with 5.7-second runs seemingly coming at will for the team.
“We changed some ignition components back when we raced at The Bend and we discovered that had changed our timing somehow,” he said. “We found that got the timing set to where it should be and even though the weather conditions were not the best, we were able to go 5.746 to top qualify.”
With the Crow Cams Top Qualifier Award now in his pocket, Zappia turned his attention to the three rounds of racing it would take to win the NDRC gold Christmas tree. The car was doing its job at each stage, turning in a 5.790 to win over Frank Taylor in round one.
The second round’s seeding saw Zappia once again face Taylor, and this time a 5.728 was the result — setting low ET of the event.
With two wins and the quickest times of each round, Zappia’s A Final place would be assured. He would take on rookie driver Russell Taylor.
“We backed down the car for the final to make sure we didn’t overpower the track,” Zappia said. “We had a small performance advantage on Russell based on our earlier numbers, but not a lot. He was running just as consistently as we were. Unfortunately, my driving was not so consistent. Coming into stage I went back into my old clutch muscle memory and I forgot to push the transbrake as I went into stage. When I finally corrected myself, the light was green and I was late, giving up almost half a second to Russell. The car got near the centre line and I muscled it back into the groove for a 5.790 to Russell’s 5.810.”
Zappia congratulated Taylor on his first ever Top Doorslammer win. “Now Russell knows that he can do it and we look forward to seeing him at more NDRC rounds.”
Back in the Zappia camp, there was positivity despite the loss. The Dananni Hotshots/Fuchs Lubricants Monaro was showing repeatable performances and adapting well to different conditions, giving everyone confidence ahead of the team’s next showing at Perth Motorplex for December 9th Summer Slam event.
“There was no drama during either day, the crew did an amazing job. We had some new people there giving us a hand and they all did really well and had a fun time. There’s lots of good things we can take away from the Goldenstates. It felt good on those two days and it feels good now. Our crew are very excited about racing on the 9th”.
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