The Nitro Funny Car show delivered some tough times at Perth Motorplex on March 19 as the track championship heated up in its penultimate round.
The weather was great throughout the one day event and with a sticky track there was plenty of opportunity for personal best times.
Nitro Funny Cars
Anthony Begley led the way with his performances in Rod Bailey’s Chemical Warfare during the night. In the first session against Damien Harris, Harris accidentally blipped the throttle in stage and was red lit out while Begley crossed the centreline on his way to an early shut off 5.62. In the second session it was a PB for Begley and the Bailey team with a great 5.09/281 up against Matt Treasure. In the final Begley was on another strong pass with similar incrementals but had engine troubles and was off the noise for a 5.42 at just 213mph.
Damien Harris emerged for a mid afternoon test pass but smoked the tyres on the hit.
Later that night he was able to pedal to a best of 5.38/246 in the second session against Mark Sheehan.
Mark Sheehan had to be shut down following this burnout but returned in the second session for a strong 5.16 at only 233mph. In the last session the incrementals were even quicker again with a 3.39 to half track (compared to Begley’s 3.46 on his 5.09) but he got out to the wall and shut down.
Matt Treasure struck the tyres on this pass after some tyre shake but he caught it quickly…
…back under noise but heading to the centreline and with the front wheels up…
…soon he had to abort.
Treasure had plenty to smile about though. In the second session he carded an awesome 5.16/286, the best ever time for the car and only just under its best ever speed.
Thanks to those ever cool Gardner Broz, here’s video from on board the Greene Machine during the night, spectacular! Thanks again to Nicholas and Lucas for their video work.
Russell Ladbrook was playing in AA/FC trim but a 6.62 in the elimination round was not good enough against Jeff Clarke.
Wayne Keys showed pace in qualifying with a AA/AP 6.11 sitting in number one spot, but unbelievably a 6.13 on a 6.75 index was only good enough for the B Final in the elimination round!
John McSweeney was on a high following his runner up at the Westernationals but a big bang in the diff area of the car in eliminations put him out of contention.
Pino Priolo’s Top Doorslammer had some mechanical dramas and withdrew after qualifying. Son Michael is headed to the USA during the off season to learn some more about supercharged racing.
Aaron Deery put in a couple of quick runs in TA/D legal trim.
Jeff Clarke was his usual energetic self but unusually missed making the finals. It gave his rival a good leg up in the points…
…that rival being Rob Pilkington. The AA/FC driver recorded a 5.80 in the final to defeat Alistair McClure and lift himself back to the top of the points.
Here are some of Pilkington’s runs including the final.
Marty Dack returns with plenty of Auto One colour following a qualifying pass.
Doug Bird returned to form with a sub-record 6.23 win in the B Final in his BB/A.
Alistair McClure is finally seeing some results with his new engine combo including a 6.58 on the BB/FCA record of 6.76. He took a runner up on the night.
Terry Stacy ran an 8.06 on his 8.18 RR/G record in the first round to dispense with Rick Johns but fell victim to Errol Quartermaine in the second.
Rob Gaikhorst was consistent in his Nissan G/Gasser and claimed a big scalp in Allen Puglia in the semi finals when Puglia red lit. He would have to settle for runner up in the end however.
Colin Mortimore was a surprise early knock out from one of the stories of the event…
…that being Errol Quartermaine. Quartermaine’s DD/G Falcon was finally on song, running some spectacular passes including a 7.80 in the first round and then running a 7.96 in the final. Quartermaine has competed in every season since 1979 and the last win he took was in 1992, making it a long time between drinks but all the sweeter!
Sean Arthur used a .007 light and a 7.99 on his 8.36 index to take a surprising win over Neil Anderson in the second round, but bowed out in the semis.
It was another frustrating day for Gordon Crawford…hopefully his nitro Harley on the way from the USA will be a bit kinder to him than his quick, but temperamental turbo Kawasaki.
Ross Townson was back into the sevens but on the tough BB/CBI index will need to improve a lot more yet.
Kevin Gummow’s 7.71 in the final was way under the CC/CB national record of 7.86 but even that wasn’t good enough against…
…the turbo Honda horsepower being produced from Brett Ghedina’s DD/CBI. After uncorking an 8.18 in qualifying, .71 under the index, Ghedina used an 8.26 in the final to defeat Gummow for his first win in Competition Bike. All the more incredible is this bike is doing sub record times without wheelie bars. It’s amazing and just a little bit scary.
Wayne Batson has virtually got the championship sewn up so long as he stages for the elimination round at the Grand Final.
After his off in the braking area last meet, Greg James made it clear who to blame!
Simon Travaglini was out in SC/S trim at this event and managed to hit a 6.41 in the elimination round, a break out against James.
Paul Carey’s wild Toyota-powered Mazda took its first event win after Ian Foster was unable to front for the final.
Frank Taylor reaches for the chutes as he nears the finish line in the big Monaro.
Mark Mackay could slot into second in the championship depending on if Ian Foster returns for the Grand Final.
Jim Duffy had this spectacular piece fresh off the boat from the USA.
Andrew Frost moved to the top of the points after Norm Butler bailed out in the first round.
Bob Brown made it to the finals but a red light there put paid to his chances.
But this event was all about Laurence Adamos again. The kid has been amazing, taking his fourth win from five events. Sharing with his brother Matt means he is not in the points race unfortunately. Running between 7.79 and 7.82 on every pass in eliminations certainly helped his cause.
If you don’t find everything about Steve Aldridge’s Chev tough there is something wrong with you!
Peter Giles slipped back in the points following a first round break out against Gavin Totten.
Kaine Weighell hasn’t had as successful a season as last but still puts on a show each and every lap with his Torana.
Sam Gullotto hit another runner up in the family Camira to move himself into the lead of the points.
Alby Bakranich, always a terror in Super Street, put his first win on the board in Super Sedan with his Monte Carlo, using a .010 and 8.20 on an 8.17 dial in in the final.
John O’Hara joined Troy Thompson in the final of Modified Bike for an all Hayabusa contest…
…but it was Troy who was able to take the win with a 9.88 on a 9.80 pass. Incidentally the bike is up for sale as Troy is planning on upgrading so if you’re into quick Suzukis this might be your thing.
Roger Moorhouse has done well this season in the Toxic Torana but a -.017 red light in the final wasted his chances at this event.
It was Blake Jeffreys able to take the win and set himself up a near unassailable lead in the championship, with only rookie Ethan Hort in with a chance to stop him at the Grand Final.
Nicole Adamos is nearing the end of her Junior Dragster career and his chasing just one more win but it wasn’t to be at this event. Her .005 light in the final and an 8.72 on an 8.65 just wasn’t quite enough…
…against Aaron Pense’s .007 light and 9.00 on an 8.95 dial in in what was a very tight race. (file photo)
Junior Dragster Rookie
Hope Best carded a nearly perfect 12.806 on a 12.80 in the final of the rookie class, but unfortunately it came attached to a red light.
Beau Higgins was able to claim yet another winner’s trophy with his tough pass a .051 light and a 12.79 on a 12.70 dial in. He now sits just above brother Kane in the points. (file photo)
Click next below to see the full photo gallery!