Phillips fired up for 40th season

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Australian Drag Racing legend and 15 times National Champion Gary Phillips and his Lucas Oil Products team have embarked on their 40th season of competition with impressive qualifying numbers and a semi final appearance in Top Doorslammer.  


A strong crowd lapped up the opportunity to experience the highly anticipated season opener for the ANDRA Pro Series at Sydney Dragway, with Phillips manning both the Lucas Oils Studebaker Doorslammer and the Chev Monte Carlo Funny Car in Top Alcohol.


Phillips managed to overcome a tricky track to qualify strongly
Phillips put paid to last year’s turbulent doorslammer season with a personal best elapsed time of 5.939 (at 245.81mph) in the first round of qualifying to bag the third qualifying position, leaving most of the field scratching their heads on how to get down the track. 


Fast forward to the first round of eliminations, and Phillips pedalled the Studebaker to a victorious 6.087 at 243.63mph despite considerable tyre shake, before lining up against Maurice Fabietti for the semi final, where the Lucas Oils Studebaker made a b-line for the centreline, forcing the thirty-nine season veteran to get off the gas, to allow an ailing Fabietti to cross the stripe first.


 “I think that was the first time in all my years of racing I’ve got off the gas and didn’t get back on when I should have. Oh what could’ve been!” a reflective Phillips said.


Gary also competed in his Lucas Oil Products Top Alcohol Funny Car, and on the very first qualifying run, claimed the #1 qualifying position and top speed of the entire event with a 5.548 at 258.07mph. Gary bowed out of the competition in round one with a heart stopping lunge over the centre line at the 330 foot marker.

Looking forward to once again be at the pointly end of the field at Sydney’s October round

“The track only had a small window to get the set up exactly right this weekend, and we had it sorted better than most at the start of the event, but it caught us by surprise as the days went on. But at the start of the season, the main thing is that both the cars are in one piece and the engines look in perfect condition, which pays tribute to the quality of Lucas’ products, so we’ll be looking forward to going back to Sydney with just the Funny Car on October 30 and 31,” Phillips said, eyeing off the opportunity to take what was learned and get back in finals contention.


And with a landmark fortieth season now in full swing, does it make the racing veteran any less hungry?


“It’d be really special to take a championship in my fortieth year, and with Lucas Oils on board with us, together we’ll be doing everything we can to make it happen.”


For more information, see the team’s website at


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