Australian National Top Doorslammer Champion John Zappia had a setback in his ambition to win a sixth straight Australian ANDRA Top Doorslammer Championship last weekend, when he failed to qualify for the 2012 Nationals at Sydney Dragway.
Zappia qualified ninth out of the fifteen car field in the Fuchs Lubricants / Procomp Electronics “Crusher” Monaro with a 6.025 @ 246.71mph – not enough for the tough 6.012 bump spot in what ended up being an eventful qualifying day. Peter Kapiris won the meeting, defeating Garry Phillips in the final despite having a fiery crash and suffering minor facial burns.
“We make no excuses for the weekend” said Zap, “Our setup was a little off and we had a component failure, so we had to sit and watch Sunday’s racing in angst. Congratulations to Peter Kapiris and his crew for a very dedicated effort to win the round. ”
Zappia’s first qualifier was a pedalling 6.028 @ 245.67mph as the car rattled the tyres in first gear, with the second pass almost a repeat with a 6.025 @ 246.71mph.
“We found some more horsepower with our engine and putting that to the track proved a little difficult with the particular combination we ran and with the track conditions in Sydney. I backed it down a little for the final qualifying pass, but it still rattled. I pedalled it, and hit second and something let go – I had to hit third and ran out of revs in the end to run a slowing 6.701 @ 168.26mph”.
“We have seen at this meeting that the rest of the field are catching up to our 5.75 capability, with two cars in the five eights, and 4 in the five nines on an average track. We have to stay ahead, and for us that has not only meant buying the latest off the shelf items from the USA, but developing new technology here in Australia – designing a lot of our own engine components, and finding more horsepower in these Hemi engines. Whenever you find more power, there is a learning curve on putting it to the track, and that’s the trouble we had on the weekend”.
“We did get some interesting data from the weekend – our sixty foot times were better, and our speed is up, so we will study the data and learn from that. It’s a long season and we hope we can recover and get the Fuchs Lubricants / Procomp Electronics Monaro back to winning rounds. We have had similar bad starts in recent years, but were lucky enough to recover and go on to win the Championship, so we hope that by getting the car back on track we can do it again. Top Doorslammer is a tough class of racing, but our team has a wealth of knowledge and data to deliver some good results in the coming rounds”.
The Zappia Racing Team will pack up in Sydney, and head back to Perth for Round 2 of the Championship at their home track. The Goldenstates is on the 16th and 17th November, and details can be found here [ HERE ]