RESULTS: Newby hits 4.48 and Muscat flies at Gulf Western Oil Winternationals day three

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Australian drag racing fans got to witness another 4.4 second run during qualifying for the Gulf Western Oil Winternationals but an unfortunate rain shower with one pass remaining in Top Fuel’s final qualifying session brought an end to the night.

Wayne Newby’s 4.48/322mph made him the second driver in Australia into the magic zone following team mate Damien Harris’ epic 4.44 on Friday.

The run came opposite a terrific personal best of 4.55/310mph from Peter Xiberras as well, making for the quickest side by side race in the history of Australian drag racing.

Unfortunately the rain meant the times were thrown out as the session was not completed.

That meant that the quickest official time for the day would be a 4.52/335mph boomer coming from Larry Dixon in session two, with Darren Morgan not far behind on a 4.60/313mph. It’s incredible to think that if all the times had stood, Morgan’s 4.60 would not have had lane choice for round one!


Rachelle Splatt ran for the first time in the Gulf Western Oil colours, but a thrown blower belt meant she did not make it more than a few feet under power.

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Pro Alcohol’s qualifying battle did not disappoint with the final sessions seeing plenty of bumping going on. Gary Phillips’ day one 5.40 was not challenged, the next closest pass being a 5.47 from John Cannuli in the second session. Wayne Price held the bump spot with a 5.65.


Steve Reed got into the field with a 5.62 but had big time cylinder head problems, while Cannuli banged the blower in the final qualifying session when he tried to improve.


The bump spot battle was also waged in Pro Slammer. John Zappia improved to a 5.64 on Saturday’s final session after an electrical problem in the second session, with Ben Bray smashing his way into the field with a 5.75, also in the final session. Scott MacLean was consistent with a 5.76 and a 5.77 in the two sessions of the day, carding top speed of 256mph in his Darren Mayer-tuned Holden Monaro. Robin Taylor’s 5.81 was a massive PB and came seemingly from nowhere. Tony Defelice had to change an engine overnight due to a rule change in Pro Slammer but recovered for a 5.87 to make the field, with Stuart Bishop on the bump with a 5.90.

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The pace has been a little slower in Pro Stock this weekend than we normally expect but it hasn’t stopped Tyronne Tremayne from taking top spot with a 6.980. Amazingly brother Aaron Tremayne missed the field with an electrical gremlin of some kind aggravating the team. Chris Soldatos was the only other six second runner on a 6.986. The eight car field was bumped by Scott Porter’s 7.10.

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It was no surprise to see Chris Matheson’s 6.18 holding on for top spot in Top Bike, with an attempt to improve in Q2 seeing the bike drift out of the groove and Matheson out of the throttle early. One rider who was definitely not out of the throttle early was Damian Muscat with two incredible runs that carried the front end all the way to the finish line. He finished with a 6.41 best and a bunch of sand to clean out of the bike after going off the end of the braking area. Despite the 253mph speed showing on the readout boards, the result was likely closer to 230mph as Muscat was carrying the front wheel over the speed trap beam and putting it down before the ET beam.

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Check out how much Damian gets thrown out of the seat when the front wheel comes down!

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Pro Bike saw Brad Lemberg improve a little to a 7.121 as Glenn Wooster closed the gap on a 7.19, as did Daniel Rabnott with a 7.25.

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Eliminations are set for Sunday but weather is currently a concern. Fingers crossed!

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