For Mildura’s Darren Morgan, racing is in his blood. But for the past 18 months, it has been conspicuous in its relative absence from his life.
That will change next Friday when he straps into his 10,000 horsepower Top Fuel Dragster at Sydney Dragway for the Gulf Western Oil Nitro Thunder.
“It was all Benny’s idea!” laughed Morgan in reference to his now in demand crew Chief Ben Patterson.
“Ben has been assisting Scott Palmer in the NHRA over the last couple of seasons and also the current FIA European Top Fuel Champion Anita Makela, but he has been at me to get the old band back together and go racing at home,” the four-time Australian champion said.
“I’ve been busy as a TAFE teacher but also working on a Pistachio Nut farm with one of my ex-apprentices. What was supposed to be a one-off job ended up being an ongoing engagement, with me helping to streamline their processes and reduce machinery breakdowns. It hasn’t left a whole lot of time for racing lately”.
That is all about to change as Morgan and the team have been readying the car for their return to the track this weekend.
“Racing is what we do. I miss driving the car, there is nothing like it. Realistically this is a one-off return for now, but we are looking for corporate partners that we could take with us on this crazy ride that we call Top Fuel,” Morgan said.
Whilst chasing the 400 Thunder Championship is not an option right now, that’s not to say that Morgan is simply racing to make up the numbers. “This is probably the strongest Top Fuel field that the country has seen for two or three years. eight cars, with all of them racing three times under the all run format – this is going to be a tough event to win. Hopefully we might be able to upset some of the big boys of the class and sneak a few points away from them for the weekend,” he said.
“We have some great partners on board this weekend with AEG Powertools, Engine Masters Australia, Kinchrome and McDonalds all supporting us, and we would love to pay them back with a 400 Thunder Gold Christmas Tree next weekend.”
Tickets are on sale now at www.sydneydragway.com.au or are available at the gate.