Zappia claims slamfest title as rain dampens Palmyra finale

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John Zappia has claimed the 2013 Slamfest Series title at Palmyra Raceway this weekend as rain unfortunately saw the Mackay finale washed out just before the semi-finals were due to be run.

In front of a strong crowd West Australia’s Zappia was awarded the Series win courtesy of his points lead heading into Saturday’s final round of the 2013 series, claiming victory over 2012 Series winner and organiser Peter Kapiris (Victoria) with Queensland’s Ben Bray in third.
“This is never how you want to see these things decided but at the same time I am very happy to have claimed the Slamfest Series title here in Mackay this weekend,” said Zappia.
“The FUCHS Striker-Monaro was running as well as possible in the conditions and I was pleased to see everyone keep their cars off the wall and be able to take them home to fight another day.
“The team worked really hard to make sure we were in the right position on the points ladder when it came to the final round, and while I would have loved to have given the Mackay crowd a real big show Saturday evening it just wasn’t to be!”
The decision to abandon the event was made in the early evening, after multiple attempts to get the on-track action started amidst continuing showers at the Mackay drag racing facility.
At the time of the cancellation, qualifying and one complete round of racing had been completed and the four quickest winners from that round – Grant O’Rourke, John Zappia, Russell Pavey and Ben Bray – were preparing for the semi-final. Series organiser Kapiris lamented the weather while thanking the Mackay locals for turning out to support the event.
“We brought in a temporary grandstand this weekend in anticipation of a strong crowd, and the fans made sure we were not disappointed,” said Kapiris, whose idler pulley ceased on the start line during round one.
“With the overcast weather and the rainy conditions leading up to Saturday, I was very much impressed with the amount of people we hosted at Palmyra Raceway and I am just wish we had been able to put on the full show for them Saturday to thank them for their support of our event and our Series.
“While we didn’t get to run a full event, there were some great performances early during qualifying and the first round, with Grant O’Rourke definitely the in-form racer and John Zappia a very deserving Series champion following a consistent effort throughout the season.”
For O’Rourke and his wife Debbie – also a drag racer – the weekend’s action signals the end of an era for the O’Rourke Racing Team.
“We were really happy with the performance at the weekend at Palmyra Raceway, to top qualify and be on our way to our good showing before the rain put paid to the racing felt really good,” said O’Rourke.
“The Slamfest Series finale was actually our last event in the O’Rourke Monaro, which has now been sold and, like the O’Rourke Motorsport Team, is about to start a whole new chapter in its life which we will be very excited to release more information about very soon!”
For full results from the final round of the 2013 Slamfest Series as well as information on the Series, please go to or
The 2013 Slamfest Series saw Top Doorslammer racers from around the country compete across the eighth-mile distance at Australia’s regional tracks for the fourth year running, taking in Heathcoate Park Raceway, South Coast Raceway (Portland), Benaraby Raceway (Gladstone) and Palmyra Raceway (Mackay).  Information regarding 2014’s plan for the Series will be released in the near future, in the meantime, for more information, please visit or

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