The Western Australian drag racing season will go out with a bang on Saturday, April 8 with the running of the Grand Final.
Fields are at maximum capacity ahead of the finale, with many eyes on the epic championship clash set to go down in the Top Comp division. Adam Marchant, Steve Aldridge and John Zappia are locked together in the points chase and looking for strong performances in what are expected to be cool air conditions, producing massive amounts of horsepower.
Marchant believed the season had actually not been one of his best with a number of gremlins occupying his 3000 horsepower, supercharged Hemi engine since a switch to a new combination. But the team will return to a spare motor in the hopes of gaining back consistency.
“I’m surprised I am still in the running because we have had a lot of difficulties this season, but I guess luck has favoured us with the points,” he said.
“With such a big field and some excellent racers the night could go in anyone’s favour. There’s a lot of teams out there with the performance to win.”
While moving to a spare motor would generally mean a decline in performance for a team, Marchant thinks their dragster will improve as they have a large amount of data on the set up.
“We know what ignition timing works, we know what clutch setting works, the main motor we have been experimenting with all year has just kept breaking little things and it just hasn’t produced numbers for us yet.
“For the Grand Final we will put everything back to the way it was when the car last ran quick and I hope it will go straight back to those numbers.”
While many eyes are on Zappia, who last won the Top Comp championship in 2010, Marchant isn’t writing off Aldridge either.
“We are against Zap, he is the king and even after dropping a couple of rounds he is still leading. But everyone is forgetting about Aldridge, he may yet beat both of us. He has been sneaking up on everyone and he will be desperately trying to run a 5sec. pass with his Chev before he moves to his new car, so he may just beat both of us.”
The Grand Final begins with sportsman qualifying on from 10am, with the main show from 5.30pm.
Perth motorsport fans will be treated to a spectacular drag racing finale with the track championship climax to also feature four Jet Dragsters, three Outlaw Nitro Funny Cars, eight Nitro Bikes and over 170 drag racing teams.
The USA’s Chuck Haynes will again be chasing a 300mph (482kmh) goal in the Volcano jet dragster, claiming he will shave off his well established moustache if he can reach the target. Fellow American Curt White, South African Pieter De Wit and Australian Daniel Miocevich will be joining in the jet-powered shenanigans.
The Beach Bomb Outlaw Nitro Funny Car driven by Andrew Katavatis will take the track in pursuit of a new personal best before winter, matching it against rookie Emma Begley and the busy Frank Taylor, who will be taking a break from his Top Doorslammer to drive Andrew Minogue’s nitro Ford Mustang.
The nitro action continues with the Nitro Bikes, with Mark Drew, Jay Upton and Benny Stevens among the stars who will be riding.