Morgan retains championship lead

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Darren Morgan Racing went into last weekend at the Perth Motorplex with high expectations having won the first 2 rounds of the ANDRA Top Fuel Championship.

Qualifying got underway on Friday evening and the V8 Nights / K Trans WA backed dragster shot straight to the number 1 position with an off-the-trailer 4.750 at 306.12 MPH.

Looking back at the data, tuner Ben Patterson could tell the track was very tight and the conditions perfect for Top Fuel drag racing. “The track was nice and cool and the air was excellent. While the track is always good in Perth you don’t always get a cool track and that’s what makes for really quick times.”

In the second qualifier the car dropped a cylinder early in the run, slowing it to a respectable 4.888 second pass. In the final qualifier held on Saturday afternoon the team tried a few new changes and smoked the tyres about 200 feet out from the start line.

At the end of qualifying Darren Morgan sat in the number 1 position with a 4.750, followed by Allan Dobson on a 4.768, Phil Lamattina with a 4.893 and a 5.028 for Mark Sheehan.

In the semi-finals Darren Morgan faced off against local hero and winner of this event last year, Mark Sheehan. “The conditions were excellent for the semi-final run,” said Darren. “With the data from our previous runs we were confident we could put down a good run.”

For Darren and the team it wasn’t meant to be. A simple failure would see the dragster limp off the line and roll down track to record a 13 second pass.

“While we’re very disappointed with the outcome of that 1 race,” reflected Darren, “the weekend as a whole was excellent and we now have a heap of data that will be invaluable for the next round at the Perth Motorplex in February and the rest of the season.”

“The car ran well during qualifying and we’re excited about going back to Perth and getting the job done. Congratulations to Mark Sheehan on his win.”

Morgan is still on top of the leader board, only 9 points separates him from Phil Lamattina who has appeared in every final this season. “We’re still the team to beat, but we need to continue to step up the car’s performance and consistency if we’re going to record back-to-back-to-back ANDRA Top Fuel Championships,” said a very determined Darren.

The next round of the ANDRA Top Fuel Championship will be in Perth on February 1 and 2.

DMR would like to thank their major sponsors V8 Nights, K Trans WA, Shannons Insurance and Victorian American Imports along with their many associate partners.

Current ANDRA Top Fuel Championship Points

1.    Darren Morgan – 285
2.    Phil Lamattina – 276
3.    Steve Read – 149
4.    Allan Dobson – 113
5.    Mark Sheehan – 105
6.    Luke Shepherd – 87
7.    Martin Stamatis – 63
8.    Terry Sainty – 44

Photo by Phil Luyer

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