The Phil Lamattina-driven LTFR Fuchs Top Fuel dragster had an almost perfect 1000-feet debut at Adelaide International Raceway, but a mechanical gremlin in the final handed the win to ANDRA championship rival Darren Morgan.
The Pro Series 1000 was Australia’s first event held over the 1000-feet distance (the mandated distance for US-based events) and the first ANDRA championship event held in Adelaide since 2001.
After qualifying in the number two position with a 4.38sec, just off Andrew Cowin’s 4.37sec effort, Lamattina was confident that the team had found the right tune-up for the green Adelaide racing surface. “The air in Adelaide is amazing and when the track has a few more meetings under its belt, we will be looking to go very quick there. The 1000 feet format is fantastic, I’m looking forward to doing it again,” he said.
Lamattina made his way to the final with a first round win over New South Welshman, Mark Mariani and a bye run in the semi finals.
The Top Fuel final was held in front of thousands of people, who packed into the iconic Adelaide International Raceway venue.
“We had lane choice in the final and we knew we could get a bit more out of the car in terms of the tune-up,” Lamattina said.
“Given that Darren (Morgan) had managed to get past Andrew Cowin to make it to the final, he was going to be tough.
“The car got off the line well and the reaction time was good but just after the 60 foot marker, the car lost power with a broken throttle cable.”
Lamattina however refused to be disappointed with the result.
“That throttle cable will be getting changed on a regular basis,” he smiled. “But you can’t be too upset, we had a great battle with Cowin in qualifying and we managed to take top speed for the event at 435.58kph, as well as closing the points gap as we head to Sydney.
The team will next appear at Sydney Dragway for the Nitro Champs in May before the season finale, the Fuchs Winternationals at Queensland’s Willowbank Raceway.