Sydney Australia’s largest city, was host to some of the most exciting ANDRA Pro Series Top Doorslammer drag racing last weekend at the Nitro Championships and John Zappia managed to knock out Championship leader Judd, and go on to the finals with Maurice Fabietti. The championship race has now hotted up with one round to go.
It was a very interesting meeting said the current National Champion John Zappia, The weather and track temp were major factors all weekend, and selecting the right set-up for each race was critical for all teams.
We were pleased to make the final after the Striker Crusher Monaro almost missed qualifying. I take my hat off to Fabietti for winning the final and such a good comeback after a major crash I know personally how much effort that required after crashing Zap’s Rat in Round 1 this season, and getting it fixed for the next round.
Qualifying started on Friday night on a cooling track, and Zap blew the tyres off in the Crusher and rolled through for a 10.993 tenth in the field of fourteen. Judd managed a respectable 6.095 to head the field, and Phillips was the only other racer to make a six second pass.
Saturday’s qualifying saw Zap repeat Friday night’s performance by over powering the track, putting pressure on the team to get into the field to keep his championship hopes alive. A 6.128 @ 241.93mph pass in the last qualifier was enough to qualify fourth, and set up a first round match up with Belleri in the Camaro.
Judd top qualified with a stunning 5.848, followed by the roots powered Willy of Mifsud on 6.050, and Fabietti on 6.076. Bump spot for the meeting was 6.396, with Deno sneaking into eigth spot.
It took a while for us to match the clutch to the track in qualifying, but the data looked good and we were set for our elimination runs with more confidence.
Sundays racing started in round one with Zap running over the young Mark Belleri with a 5.885 @ 243.77mph to the Camaros 6.147 @ 230.1mph. Other winners were Judd (5.870), Bishop (5.995) and Fabietti (5.942).
Round two saw another tough match up between Zap and Judd possibly a championship decider. But the race was over before it started with Judd rolling the beams and red lighting.
I was so determined to win this race we had hotted up the Crusher to make sure we had the power, and it just took off and spent a lot of time on the back wheels on the run. I sit pretty low in the Striker Monaro and when it lifts the front wheels the view is pretty exciting. The 5.841 @ 245.18mph was quick enough for low ET of the meeting, giving me vital points to catch Juddy. This was a very satisfying win for all the team.
Fabietti (5.873) put away Bishop (6.265) in the other semi to set up a killer final between the two Monaro’s.
The track temp started to go away as we waited in the staging lanes, and after Fab beat me on the tree the Crusher shaked and rattled and I had to fight the wheel and use up most of the track to try and catch him but he had the perfect setup for the run and his 5.946 @ 245.76 was too good for my 6.043 @ 241.97mph
The results of the final opened up the championship for Fabietti, who is now on 500 points and brought Zappia to 526 points 9 points behind Judd.
This sets up one of the most interesting Winternationals ever in Top Doorslammer, with the championship decided at that event. We are confident we have what it takes to make it three championships in a row but as we know in racing, anything can happen on the day, and on any of the runs.
For more details, photos and videos go to www.zapsrat.com.au
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