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Zappia runs first 3 in Australia and wins Mildura

Australian Top Champion John Zappia added another accolade to his racing resume this weekend by running the first ever eighth mile three second pass in Australia, at the Slamfest event in country town Mildura, Victoria.

The Fuchs Lubricants / Procomp Electronics Monaro won the final, and took over the lead in the Slamfest Top Doorslammer Series run by Pro Modified Australia.

“An excellent days racing with the car performing well” said an upbeat Zappia, “We are on a roll now with our wins – momentum is building, and the team is really positive”.

“We carried on from our Tasmania tune-up, as we are still learning eighth mile racing, and the first pass blew the tyres off at sixty feet. The air was good, so we took a little out for the second qualifier and ran a 4.04 @ 186mph. Sixty foot times were our lowest ever – so the track was holding our power”.

“The 4.04 got us Top Qualifier position, and a solo in Round 1. Gerry tweaked the clutch a little and a 4.00 @ 186 showed a nice incremental improvement on the previous run”.

“I had people coming up asking if a three second run was possible – and of course it was provided all went well. In the Semi-final against Victor Bray the air got better and history was made as a 3.98 @ 187mph came up on the board, over Victor’s 4.20. Phillips 4.18 defeated Kapiris 4.23 in the other Semi”.

“Another great record for Craig Pedley’s “Crusher”Monaro. He is away overseas on Striker Crushing and Screening business, but was pretty excited with the result. Fuchs and Procomp Electronics deserve the win for their continued sponsorship of the team”.

Phillips gave Zap a great battle in the final with a 4.18 on the cold track but Zap was too good running a 4.05 @ 187mph.

A quick look at Doorslammer history:

John Zappia recorded the first Doorslammer 7 second run in Australia, and the World’s first Super Stock car in the sevens, with a 7.98 second pass at 174.40 mph, on December 26, 1988 at Ravenswood International Raceway, Perth, Western Australia, in his AA/Gas HQ Holden Monaro “Zap’s Rat”.

He recorded the first legal Doorslammer 6 second run in Australia with a 6.912 pass at 209.79 mph, on December 26, 1991, in his AA/Gas HQ Holden Monaro “Zap’s Rat”, at Ravenswood International Raceway, Perth, Western Australia. At the time it was the fastest pass by a doorslammer in the world.

Zap recorded the first legal Doorslammer 5 second run in Australia with a 5.967 pass at 241.97 mph, on 17th Sept 2005, in his new Rentco Monaro Top Doorslammer at Western Sydney International Raceway, NSW.

This new record of 3.98 @ 187mph makes Zap the first member of the Promod Australia Three Second Club.

“I am sure there will be many members of this three second club – we are all learning this eighth mile racing, and plenty of racers have what it takes to run three’s”.

The Zappia racing team head back to Sydney for the Nitro Champs, where Round 5 of the ANDRA Pro Series Top Doorslammer Championship will be run at Sydney Dragway.

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Slamfest record: Mildura first regional track to achieve a three-second pass BY LIZ O’ BRIEN
09 Apr, 2012 04:00 AM
A RACE record was set on the Mildura leg of the Doorslammers’ Slamfest at the weekend.
About 3700 people turned out to watch 97 competitors race at Koorlong’s Sunset Strip track.
Publicity officer Jenni Gledhill said it “was some of the closest racing” since Slamfest’s inception three years ago.
As well as travelling to regional tracks nationwide, the event – which started in Mildura in 2010 – is held annually here.
Ms Gledhill said until the weekend, no driver had managed to race at a track in under four seconds.
“All of the Slamfest series travel to regional tracks all over Australia chasing the three-second pass and Mildura actually got that last night (Saturday), so we’re pretty proud and stoked with that,” she said.
“ John Zappia took the three-second pass at 3.9 seconds.
“Its the first one that’s ever happened in the Slamfest.
“Competitors have been pushing the cars to be the first to get that three second-pass down a regional track.”
Zappia also won the race meeting and was awarded a trophy and prize money.
He managed to reach 187mph, (300.94km/h) surpassing the average 120mph (193.12km/h) speed, on the 200-metre track.
Ms Gledhill said racing finally got underway at noon on Saturday, after a dust-storm required the track to be cleaned a second time, adding a two-hour delay.
Volunteers managed to wash the track and restore it to racing condition.
“The work the guys did was magic,” Ms Gledhill said.
“It all went extremely well, it was some of the closest racing we’ve seen.
“We had day-tripppers from South Australia, we had people from Melbourne and entries all the way from WA, so that was pretty good to get such a wide variety of entrants.
“The quality of entrants was outstanding and it was some of the best racing .
“We had some of our local drivers take podium positions in some of the events, which is always nice.

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Zappia Backs up Track Record in Darwin with a 5.89

Australian National Top Doorslammer Champion John Zappia and his Zappia Racing Team travelled to the Northern Territory state capital of Darwin for the final round of the Slamfest, at the Hidden Valley Dragway. The event was sponsored by the Northern Territory Government and 7Mate, and was officially opened by Chief Minister Paul Henderson in front of a huge crowd.

“We love traveling to Darwin and racing” said John Zappia, “The atmosphere is great, the people are great, and the track has the potential to join the best in the country”.

Friday night was the first round of qualifying, and all teams struggled to get down the green track. The Fuchs Lubricants / Procomp Electronics “Crusher” Monaro led the field with an unrepresentative pass of 6.64.

“The track was green with Doorslammers being the first cars down the track for the event. Even though our Track-Meter showed good reasonable grip at the start line, further out it was a little slippery”.

Second qualifier on Saturday night saw Zap run a 5.981 @ 236.92mph to qualify second behind Peter Kapiris who ran 5.945 @ 245.63mph – the only two cars running below 6 seconds.

“That was a safe run for us, as we had a setup in the car to get us down the track and into the show. Round 1 we were up against local Matt Abel who knows the track pretty well, so we had to be on our game”.

“Unfortunately I had to pedal after launching and drifting towards the centreline, and the throttle cable broke on the hit – and I had to watch Matt pass through ahead of me for the win 7.533 to my 7.797. That’s unfortunate a component failure ended our bid to win the event, but that is racing. There are hundreds of parts in these cars that all have to work right, and the smallest can let you down”.

“We had the opportunity to complete an exhibition pass on the Saturday night, and managed to run a 5.890 at 242.63mph with a different setup, and that has given us some good data we can use in the future”.

The event was won by Gary Phillips over Peter Kapiris. The 2012 Slamfest Series winner was Peter Kapiris with 545 points, over Phillips 460 points, and Ben Bray on 435.

“We ran equal fourth in the series with 395 points, after running only five of the seven events. We look forward to next year’s Slamfest Series, as this year has been a complete success from our point of view. The local regional tracks have been packed with spectators all keen to see the best Slammers in the country, and that’s what we aim to keep doing. The atmosphere is great – a little less stressful than full competition, and good comradeship exists between the teams”.

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