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John Zappia rocks Tassie Nationals.

Current ANDRA Top Doorslammer Champion John Zappia has just returned from the East Coast and reports on his invitation to complete exhibition passes at Dragway Tasmania’s “Tassie Nationals”.

“We had a great time down in Tassie – grass roots drag racing at it’s finest” said Zap, “Jamie Peck put on a good show for the Launceston locals, despite many other events on the same weekend in Tasmania. The track was never going to be like the three major Championship Tracks, but surprisingly the first sixty feet were dynamite!”

“My old mate Victor Bray has the record down there at 6.44 @ 227mph on a very well prepped track, so it was going to be interesting to see how the Striker Monaro went. First pass caught me out big time – with the first 60 feet being so good, then the tyres turning, shaking and rattling all over the track with a few pedals thrown in, I managed a 7.1 pass.”

“We had a bit of a think about how we could get down the track better for the crowd – put some power back in, changed some ratios and went back out for pass number two. The Rat took off like a scolded cat, blew the tyres off a little after the 60 foot mark – forcing me to take a big half a second pedal – then ran it out the door for a 6.52 @ 227mph! Not too bad actually on a track like this.”

“With a bit of confidence we hotted her up for the final pass, and it was a little too much for the track, and took about four pedals and two lanes to get it down to the end at 6.63 @ 219mph. A wild ride for sure, but one the local seemed to enjoy.”

“We appreciated the hospitality of the people down there, and our merchandise was a hit with the fans too.”

Zappia Racing are now in Perth for the Top Alcohol Round on 30 – 31st Jan 2009 at the Perth Motorplex, before heading back to Sydney on 13 – 14th Feb for the Summernationals and Round 4 of the ANDRA Top Doorslammer Championships.

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Champ extends Championship lead

John Zappia took his Striker Monaro Top Doorslammer to a win in the ENZED Nightfire meeting last weekend at Willowbank International Raceway, in a flawless display of Top Doorslammer drag racing. After top qualifying on the Friday night with a sizzling 5.987, and resetting the ANDRA speed record with a massive 247.66mph, Zap was set to test the resolve and tuning ability of his competitors. But it was the West Aussie that dominated the weekend’s racing.

“We are thrilled with the win”, said a jubilant Zappia this week, “It would have been easy to think we did it easy, but the amount of work that goes into this car prior to arriving at the track for racing is substantial. 25 years of racing experience counts at this level, and my desire to win and be the best is pretty high”.

Zap faced off against “Wild Willy” racer Sean Mifsud in Round 1, but another “five” from the Champ was hard to beat as Zap powered Zap’s Rat to a 5.987et @ 247.39mph power run against Mifsud’s 6.283et @ 228.89mph.

“How’s that! A five and huge mph! No other car runs a B & J Transmission/Santhuff Shocks/Mickey Thompson combination in Top Doorslammer and we get a dream run out of the many combinations we can put together for different track conditions”.

Round two saw Zap up against upset winner Andrew Sutton in his HSV Monaro, but fate was against Sutton as his car failed to start – handing the win to Zappia Racing. Always the consummate entertainer, Zap ran the Striker Monaro out the back door on the solo for a 5.981et @ 234.25mph win.

“The final was going to be another face off against my Perth competitor Robin Judd, but I have got the better of him in our recent races and was confident they may go too far in the setup”.

The crowd was on fire by the time the final came around, as American Gary Densham had reset the Nitro Funny Car Australian ANDRA National record with a 4.86et @ 309.7mph in an absolute cracker of a display from all the Nitro Funny Cars.

Zap staged the Rat up against the Studebaker of Judd, and it was a battle of horsepower tuners, with Zap coming off the better as Judd blew the tyres off and nearly rolled the car. Zap rattled the tyres and had to pedal, but a 6.055et @ 240.26mph pass was enough to get the victory and the Championship points.

“Another win is great. Many thanks to the crew who made a flawless effort all weekend. It’s a pleasure to race this way, with support from such positive major sponsors. Fuchs Oil had a good presence at this event, and we love their oil products in the TFX engine – main bearing wear is the best we have ever had. The crew enjoy the distinctive blue roller cabinets full of tools from Force Tools Australia in the pits”.

“It’s always good to race at Willowbank as it gives us the chance to catch up with Chris from Striker Crushing and Screening, as well as some of his Striker Employees. Thanks to Beta Spuds for their support from WA, and Graham Jones From Southside Engine Centre who imparts his knowledge and leadership on our trips to the east”.

John Zappia now extends his lead in the 2009 ANDRA Top Doorslammer Championship with 290 points, ahead of Judd on 260 points, Phillips on 195 points, and Benny Bray on 155. Photos are on the Zappia Racing web site www.zapsrat.com.au

Zappia Racing now heads on down to Tasmania as a guest feature match race performer at the Tassie Nations on 17th/18th January at the Tarmac Raceway in Launceston.


Zappia on fire!

John Zappia rocked up at Willowbank International Raceway, Queensland this week from Perth, ahead of the ENZED International Nightfire New Year Series weekend on fire and ready to win. This event is Round Three of the 2008/2009 ANDRA Top Doorslammer Championship, a seven round series raced across this huge nation of Australia.

“I would firstly like to wish drag racing fans our seasons greetings, and hope everybody has a Happy New Year”, said Zap, “The Zap’s Rat team like to party and I know we will be having a ball here in Queensland. I think drag racing is a welcome break from all the celebrations and doom and gloom out there in the world. We are here to run the quickest sedans in the world for our team and the fans, and I hope everybody enjoys the long burnouts and quick close racing these cars showcase”.

John Zappia has had a stellar start to the new season, and currently sits on top of the Championship table on 190 points after a Round Two win in his home town of Perth. Sitting in second on 175 points is another Perth quick man Robin Judd, followed by young Benny Bray on 135 points and stalwart Gary Phillips on 130 points.

“Round Two in Perth was probably one of our best meeting performances ever, having run six fives all in row and taking the win. The Rat ran remarkably well, and taking Juddy in the final after he ran a World Record earlier in the event was satisfying”.

“We competed at the last local National Open meeting in Perth, and ran four fives (5.917, 5.901, 5.921 and 5.952) to win the B Final in Top Comp, the 5.901et @ 242.58mph was a particularly strong run. Our data set is forever expanding, and giving us more insight into how these cars run – I am still learning, and enjoy the mental task of figuring out how to make them run quicker”.

“The Striker Monaro is in really good condition. Our low five second tune is safe, and that is something for most of my other twelve competitors this weekend to really worry about. We know how to win, and as long as we don’t get ahead of ourselves we are very confident of a win here”.

Racing starts on Friday 2nd Jan, with three qualifiers at 5pm, 7pm and 9pm, and eliminations start on Saturday at around 5pm.