The Good Friday Super Thunder show at Willowbank Raceway was brought to an early end by rain after two rounds of racing were completed for the pro categories.
After the controversial decision of three Top Fuel teams to not attend the event, Pro Alcohol, Pro Stock and Top Bike were left to hold up the event. As a result spectator numbers were down, though the weather no doubt also played a role.
Pro Alcohol did its best to play the headliner with some close side-by-side racing and tough passes. Round one saw Wayne Price take the first win light with a 5.63 after Chris Hargrave was unable to front in his new look Funny Car. Steve Reed used a 5.58 to dispense with Luke Marsden on a tyre shaking run, while Justin Walshe dropped a personal best 5.651 to get by a pedalling 5.91. Walshe’s pass missed becoming the quickest altered run in the country by only three thousands of a second (Mark Sheehan’s 5.649 still holds that mark). Gary Phillips used a tough 5.469/267mph to close out the round against another tough altered pass, Greg Clayton’s 5.69.
Round two opened with a red light from Clayton, allowing Walshe’s 5.71 to take an easy victory in the altered battle. Ambruosi recovered for a 5.70 holeshot win against Price’s 5.58, while Reed lifted his performance on a 5.47 run to defeat Marsden’s 5.65. Hargrave was back for round two but faced veteran Phillips, whose 5.429 took low ET for the event and the win light.
The final would have been between Phillips and Reed were it not for the rain.
A strange first round of the NxtGen Pro Stock Spectacular saw just one side-by-side race, between Wayne Daley and Jodi Racco. A .043-reacted 7.086 from Racco defeated Daley’s .016 and 7.117 by just four thousandths of a second. Tyronne Tremayne and Brian Pursell both left before the tree, resulting in a race without a winner. Aaron Tremayne went 7.03/196mph to get by a 7.67 from Paul Beauchamp. Scott Porter also left before the tree, with Chris Soldato’s 7.02/196mph earning the win.
Round two proved a better show for the fans. Daley got a win with a 7.02 against Beauchamp’s 7.63. Porter had a solo when Racco was unable to make it to the beams, a 7.08 the result. Aaron Tremayne cracked the only six of the night with a 6.98/196mph to defeat brother Tyronne’s 7.03/195mph while Pursell’s 7.09 upset Soldatos’ 7.10. By our unofficial calculations it would have been Aaron Tremayne taking on Wayne Daley in the incomplete final.
Top Bike saw another small field with four bikes in racing as John Zahra was unable to complete his licensing. Chris Matheson powered out to a 6.37 to defeat Gavin Spann’s 7.24, as Les Holden took a big scalp with a 7.66 win against Jay Upton who had some traction issues.
In round two, Spann’s 7.01 defeated Holden’s 8.04 while Matheson had a solo 6.42 when Upton did not front. Matheson and Spann would have been the two finalists had the finals been reached.
Most sportsman brackets were still in the early rounds as the event was called.
The next 400 Thunder round will be Gulf Western Oil Nitro Thunder at Sydney Dragway on May 3 and 4.
Check out the below gallery thanks to Drag Photos. You can check out their full gallery here.