John Zappia took some convenient luck to win the opening round of the WA Summer Slam Series on Saturday at Perth Motorplex.
After a supercharger backfire during qualifying, Zappia had to get his Holden Monaro Top Doorslammer back into racing shape for the first round of eliminations, where a 5.73sec. run earned him a finals appearance against Daniel Gregorini, who had earlier shot to a 5.70sec. personal best time.
Unfortunately for Gregorini, some mechanical problems prevented him from making the call to face Zappia, who took a solo for the win. Zappia’s luck continued as he made a wild run, crossing the centre line, which would have resulted in disqualification had Gregorini been in the other lane.
There was none of the same luck for fellow Top Doorslammer racer Stu Moresby, who made contact with the safety barriers at over 300kmh when an oil line came off the motor. Moresby then struggling to get the car to a safe stop, spinning in the braking area and narrowly avoiding even more damage from the walls.
The strange night continued in the Modified final, where Nick Panagopoulos had a front wheel collapse before he even got to the start line to take on Jim McQuade, who took home his first event win.
Thankfully there were less problems among the Nitro Funny Cars, which saw Matt Abel taking on Andrew Katavatis in a best-of-three match race. Katavatis turned on two win lights for the overall victory, though Abel was left satisfied with a 5.574sec. pass, the quickest of the night only just ahead of Katavatis’ 5.588 shot.
Wayne Keys survived a war of attrition in Top Comp, emerging victorious with a run of 5.95sec., a new best time for his self-built Chevy Camaro that had the team working hard all night with various suspension/chassis issues.
In other results for the night, Errol Quartermaine took out a small Super Comp field, Phill Paton continued to dominate Comp Bike, Greg Gibson sent his dragster to a Supercharged Outlaws win and Yvette Gregg earned the Top Sportsman victory with a set of stunningly consistent wheelstanding runs.
Outlaw Radial saw several teams make their debut runs, though it was category regular Kevin Boulton ending on top with an 8.17 to 8.42 win against George Kelly.
Kyle Higgins went home with the big trophy in Super Sedan, Daniel Natalotto scored big in Modified Bike, Motorplex veteran Mark Reaney took a popular win in Super Street and Cooper Moresby took out his first Junior Dragster win.
Full results can be found on the Perth Motorplex Website Here
Drag racing returns to Perth Motorplex on December 14 for the WA Drag Racing Championship Super Sportsman Showdown.