The tight competition of the Pro Stock drag racing category continues to ramp up with teams calling in reinforcements ahead of the Fuchs Winternationals.
Several teams have allied to bring US engine tuner Rick Watters across the Pacific to assist including Jason Grima, Lee Bektash, Nino Cavallo and Wayne Daley. Watters will also be helping a range of teams from the Rocket Allstars Racing Series.
The news come in addition to Emilio Spinozzi’s Terra Civil outfit bringing in Cale Aronson, a tuner whose services are in demand globally, to hopefully boost their Pontiac GTO into the winner’s circle. Bektash, driver of the Team Mopar Dodge Stratus, said Watters had a wealth of knowledge on the high revving, naturally aspirated V8s used by Australian Pro Stock teams.
“Rick’s a very reputable and smart engine guy and very well known in America,” he said. “With him here in person we can really turn the tune up right up and not be as conservative as we have been. Just his presence will be a great experience for the crews on all teams.”
Bektash said most teams were using American input now to gain an edge as small as a few hundredths of a second on a run, which may be the difference between winning and losing in the super tight category.
“Every team has some tie with an American. Once the cars are running as fast you need to start leaning on the tune and having the engine builder out will be an advantage to these guys,” he said.
Grima instigated the deal while in the USA last month and will be testing ahead of the event to ensure he can get the most out of Watters’ knowledge and be a contender in a field that has now reached 27 teams.
“We will be testing the weekend before at the annual Winter Warm-up just to get some data and make sure everything is working like it should,” he said. “It’s not only the largest professional field ever in Australian drag racing history but it’s going to be the toughest too.”
The Fuchs Winternationals takes place on June 8-11 at Willowbank Raceway near Ipswich, Queensland. The full ANDRA drag racing experience will be on show including all pro categories and the best sportsman racers in the nation taking part in the Rocket Allstars Racing Series.
By ANDRA PR