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EDITION 6/2013


















CONTENTS Fastlane is produced by the Australian National Drag Racing Association. Editor: Luke Nieuwhof ( Design: YBI Creative ( Photography: Dave Reid (, Grant Stephens (, Joe Maday, Lee Davis (, Bob Taylor (, Hayley Turns, Fred Dwyer, Luke Nieuwhof, Lucas Gardner. John Bosher, David Hope and Tanya Catasti

ANDRA Staff CEO: Malcolm Bulley Accounts: Donna Jantke Business Manager: Jackie Mills Licensing and Membership: Leanne Wright Media Manager: Luke Nieuwhof Reception: Kylie Hazelhurst Competition Manager: Brett Stevens Business Development Manager: Jennifer Harrison





Contact Details Phone: 08 8271 5355 Fax: 08 8721 6988 Email: Post: PO Box 250, Kent Town SA, 5071 Street: 3/212 Greenhill Road, Eastwood SA, 5063




s t r o p e Round R ationals



gN n i r p S 22 der n u h TRACK T o r t i N 24 als SPOTLIGHT n o i t a N alian r t s u A 26 KWINANA BEACH



CROW CAMS partners with ANDRA for 2014 Season

presented by Crow Cams recently at Calder Park and will ramp up its involvement into 2014.



staging stagingla Crow Cams is set to join the ANDRA Drag Racing Series as a new associate sponsor for an historic 2014 season. The timing for the announcement comes at a time of massive growth for the ANDRA Drag Racing Series and the Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship with an expansion to 11 tracks involved across both series. ANDRA championship drag racing is a high pressure environment and one that requires teams to demand quality and reliability in their racing parts. For over 20 years Crow Cams have supplied standard replacement and performance camshafts and valve train components to car companies, racers and performance enthusiasts. Crow Cams’ reputation is built on success in motorsport and the company has maintained successful long term technical partnerships with leading teams in drag racing, V8 Supercars, speedway and boat racing. Their unique inhouse facilities to design and develop leading edge camshaft profiles has allowed these teams to win many national and world championships and set countless national and world performance records along the way. Crow Cams marketing manager Robert Henty said with their product the first choice for many of ANDRA’s top race teams, the company wanted to work in partnership with the sport to continue to be a leader in camshaft technology. “We want Crow Cams to be first in mind for drag racers whether that be for a mild upgrade for their street car or to wring valuable horsepower from a Top Doorslammer motor,” he said. “We are looking forward to this partnership being able to demonstrate our products in the toughest testing environment available – the drag strip.” ANDRA business development manager Jennifer Harrison said Crow Cams was a valuable new partner whose links with drag racing were well known already but would be taken to the next level together with ANDRA. “Many people who attend drag racing are performance car enthusiasts and they are always looking for high performance products that are synonymous with brands like Crow Cams,” she said. “For drag racing fans the choice is going to be clear – if you need the quality of product that ANDRA drag racers rely on Crow Cams is your only choice.” Crow Cams was heavily involved with Fuchs Nitro Thunder


ANDRA APPOINTS AMBASSADOR to India and the Middle East

ANDRA has announced a tie up with AKT Strategic Consulting as part of its overall strategy to expand overseas and seek global partners. AKT Strategic Consulting was founded by AK Tareen, who represented Australian federal and state governments in India to promote trade, investment and cultural ties since 1995 until his retirement as SA’s Senior Trade Commissioner early this year. ANDRA CEO Malcolm Bulley said India and the Middle East, like Australians, were extremely passionate about sports. “With increasing prosperity, motorsports is becoming hugely popular amongst Indians who now host their own Grand Prix and have produced several internationally recognised F1 racers,” he said. “ANDRA is keen to tap into this large but unexplored market to promote its calendar of events in 2014 and beyond. “We are delighted to appoint AK Tareen as ANDRA’s Ambassador to India and the Middle East to promote drag racing and help attract global partners. “Mr Tareen is a keen sporting and motoring enthusiast and, as Australia’s rep in the sub-continent for nearly two decades, comes with immense credibility, experience, knowledge and networks in the region. He has a brilliant track record in innovatively marrying sports with business.” ANDRA business development manager Jennifer Harrison said she couldn’t wait to see the growth to come. “I am truly excited at the prospects of AK Tareen introducing overseas companies to the most powerful motorsport on the planet,” she said. Mr Tareen said he was excited to be associated with ANDRA as its Ambassador to India and the Middle East. “As a keen automobile and racing aficionado right since my childhood, it is a dream come true for me to be working closely with this sport,” he said. “I am looking forward to using my profile and connections to build ‘Brand ANDRA’ in India and the Middle East as well as promote global partnerships.”






Colin Brassington has joined ANDRA as its new technical officer. Based in the Adelaide head office, Colin comes to ANDRA from a strong engineering and drag racing background. He has spent nine years working in construction design on projects including Adelaide Airport, the Adelaide Convention Centre, the Rundle Place development and the Royal Adelaide Hospital. As well as the engineering qualifications needed to cater to technical aspects of the sport, Colin also has a strong drag racing background, first as a Junior Dragster racer in the late nineties and then as an ANDRA steward since 2004, including being chief steward for the SA division since 2012. He has also worked with the ANDRA National Rules Committee since 2012. Colin can be contacted at

RULE SUBMISSION period now open

ANDRA members wishing to put in rule proposals should note that the period for submissions is now open. Members are invited to send in their rule proposals and have their say in the future of the sport. All rule submissions should be written as per the ANDRA Rules Amendment Policy, taking particular note of section 1.5.6 which outlines the template the rule submission must follow (or check page 22 of the 2013 ANDRA Rule Book). The submissions should be in legibly printed or typed form and be accompanied by the lodgement fee of $25. Submissions should be sent to head office at PO Box 250, Kent Town, SA 5071 or The closing date for rule submissions is December 13, 2013. Speaking of rules, by now you should have received your 2014 ANDRA Rule Book!



Turn key, Beretta body 125” moly chassis, 9” braced rear, 4:11 Pro Gears, M.W. axles 16x16 with 34.5 slicks, Chev 454 grout filled , hardened Eagle crank, Manley alloy rods, Pro Topline alloy heads, stainless valves, two speed Lenco with three plate Crower glide clutch, Ken Lowe hat and port injection system, 14/71 Littlefield blower, (polished) magnesium buzzard hat, 110 Enderle pump, polished alloy 65 litre fuel tank. Runs 7.4 @ 311kph on a regional track at 26% over. $48,000 ONO. Will separate, complete engine, clutch and Lenco $25,000 ONO, rolling chassis $24,000 ONO. Call John on 0418 178 896 or 03 6263 7472 (Tasmania).



The ANDRA head office will be closing for a few days between Christmas and New Year. The last day of operations will be December 24, with staff returning on January 2. On behalf of all of the head office staff (Colin Brassington, Malcolm Bulley, Jennifer Harrison, Kylie Hazelhurst, Donna Jantke, Jackie Mills, Luke Nieuwhof, Brett Stevens and Leanne Wright) we hope all our members and their families enjoy a relaxing Christmas break and look forward to beginning the season with you all in January.

VALE: Dennis Syrmis

Former ANDRA national director and Hall of Fame inductee Dennis Syrmis has passed away, aged 71, following a long illness. Dennis will be remembered for the positive impact he had on the sport of championship drag racing, as a racer, administrator and track manager. He was a tenacious champion of drag racing, both as a racer and administrator but his most satisfying achievements were as track manager of Willowbank Raceway. Dennis was national director of the Australian National Drag Racing Association from 1974 until 1983 when he resigned to take up the position of manager of Willowbank Raceway. He stepped down as Willowbank manager in 2002 due to ill health. ANDRA wishes to express its sincere condolences to Dennis’ family and many friends in the drag racing community. Fastlane will run a special on Dennis’s life in the next issue.

37 Chevy, double rail chromoly chassis, four link, 40 spline Strange floater, 548ci BBC - Racecomp Motorsport built, 10 passes on engine, Hi Helix 14/71 supercharger, ProMag, Powerglide, TCI Converter. Engine and gearbox have all the best parts. Soft 6.90 @ 196mph. Head turning car. $65,000 turnkey. Call Michael 0416 380 351 for any further info.

RACING SEATS Pair of Ultra Shield racing seats. The condition is as new/unused and they come with a pair of fully fitted/removable covers. The narrower seat comes with an adjustable runner. Height 950mm, width 420/440mm, depth 430mm $300ea + $50 for runner or both $600. Contact Paul on 0424 296 620 (Mandurah, Western Australia).



2012 / 2013






1 Craig Baker



2 Leanne Braggs


1 Darren Morgan 2 Phil Lamattina

3 Tony Littlewood


3 Steve Read


4 Kenny Stewart


4 Damien Harris


5 Jess Turner


5 Tommy Johnson Jr











1 Gary Phillips 2 Steve Ham


3 John Cannuli



4 Steve Reed



5 Wayne Newby


1 John Kapiris 2 Jim Denaro



3 Roc Puccini 4 Neil Constantinou


5 Steven Fowler

1 Greg Clayton


2 Craig Geddes


3 Jason Maggs


4 Wayne Cartledge 5 Shane Baxter










1 Darren Parker


1 Gavin Dohnt


1 John Zappia


2 Mario Barbon


2 Tony Frost


2 Peter Kapiris


3 Jason Simpson


3 Shane Walker


3 Victor Bray


4 Steven Norman


4 Geoffrey Stewart


4 Ben Bray


5 Daniel Camilleri


5 Niki Zakrzewski


5 Maurice Fabietti




1 Corey Buttigieg


2 Paul Harrison


3 Ross Smith


4 Glenn Northridge


5 Corey Scholes








1 Carl Taylor


1 Chris Porter


2 Mark Phillips


2 Graeme Morell


3 Graeme Cooper


3 Chris Matheson


4 Joe Jurkovic


4 Dennis Grant



5 Terry Burnett



5 Rod Kerr

JUNIORDRAGSTER 1 Brayden Naylor 2 Toby Austin





1 Jason Grima



2 Aaron Tremayne



3 Wayne Daley



4 Lee Bektash


5 Chris Soldatos


2 Michael Baghdadi


3 Gina Bullians


4 Scott Porter


3 Hayley Mackay 4 David Roberts

5 George Rehayem


5 Luke Cartledge





1 Luke Marsden



1 Luke Crowley


2 Chris V’antHof


1 Matthew Forbes 2 Simon Isherwood


2 Maurice Allen


3 Grant Fraser



3 Scott White


4 Darryl Walford


3 Darryl Stephen 4 David Gauldie


4 Lachlan Ireland


5 Paul Stephen


5 Colin Griffin


5 Glenn Wooster







2012 / 2013

At the end of one of the most gruelling seasons yet in the ANDRA Drag Racing Series and Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship, Fastlane has compiled the thoughts of all 17 ANDRA champions. TOP FUEL – DARREN MORGAN “The 2012/2013 season was the longest and probably toughest conducted in the sport’s history.

“This is the third consecutive title for Darren Morgan Racing and fourth overall after winning the Top Fuel championship back in 2004/2005 (with the Lamattina family). “After using this last round to test and set up next year’s new clutch program, we are already quietly confident of many more (number one plates).”

TOP ALCOHOL – GARY PHILLIPS “We’re over the moon to win, every season is still a challenge and that is why we keep coming back. “The thing should have been faster all event than what it was but we were just missing the ball a little bit. We knew the car had it in there and it was sure a handful to drive in the final.” “I finally cut a good a light, so what we learned in testing showed in racing. I’ve always driven on the conservative side but now you need everything so I’ve got to get into it.”

TOP BIKE – CHRIS PORTER “Graeme (Morell) has got us two times so it was good to get him this time. “In the semi final we lifted a cylinder and punched a rod out so we had to do a motor change. The boys flogged and got it done in two hours. “We’ll be back again next season, with a new sponsor on board as well.”



“Coming into the event, it seemed like an impossible assignment – having to win the event, and Peter having to either not qualify or lose in the first round. But we stayed positive and focused and the fairy tale did come true. “Our deepest commiserations go to our good mate Peter Kapiris who led the series all year and just fell 19 points short to run a valiant second for the second year in a row.

“The feeling of jubilation after winning was just amazing.”

PRO STOCK M/CYCLE - LUKE CROWLEY “We were over the moon to realise at Calder that we only needed to front in Sydney to win the year. “We work super hard at each event and even more hours when it’s all in the workshop, I don’t like to chance a single part on this bike as I’ve seen first hand that parts failure if is the reason a lot of the other guys fall short and lose races. “At this stage next year is uncertain as to what I will be riding and also where, we have had plans to go to Europe for a while now, and are also looking to find a ride in the NHRA for a few rounds to try and learn more to stay in front.”

PRO STOCK – JASON GRIMA “I was ecstatic, I got really emotional, but that’s part and parcel with it I think, it is just the way it is. “We made it hard on ourselves in qualifying this weekend. We had our backs to the wall and the guys came through. “We stuck to a tune up we knew would work and did not do anything out of left field. We unfortunately hurt the motor in the last round, that is one of those deals. We’ll be back next year.”

SUPER STOCK - DARREN PARKER “My crew guys (Matt and Paul) actually did some maths after round one of eliminations and once they worked out I had won the championship they were questioning whether to tell me or not. “Once I won the meeting and confirmed that I officially had won the championship I felt like nobody could have beaten us that day. It was a dream come true to win a gold Christmas tree and to follow that on with a championship win!”


SUPER SEDAN – JOHN KAPIRIS “I felt proud of myself. It was a lot of work and a lot of fun heading to as many Aeroflow rounds as we could and it has paid off. “We got the car really dialled in this season. It might not be the quickest one in the field but it was consistent and that’s what counted.”

2012 / 2013

SUPER COMPACT – ROD HARVEY “It always feels great to know you have won an ANDRA championship, it makes it even more special when you are a Kiwi and you’re miles away from home and you can be competitive in a country that a few years earlier you could only dream of racing in. “We normally have a very consistent car which has helped contribute to our championship win, which sometimes in our class is hard to have, trying to make these turbo cars do the same thing twice can be impossible some days.”

COMPETITION – GREG CLAYTON “When we realised we had won the championship it was a huge relief. There was a huge sense of pride among the team as the guys had worked hard all season and we run a Chrysler engine combination that is different to everyone else. We knew if we ran the car same as always, and charged hard from the first qualifier then we had as much chance as anyone else on winning the championship. To now be named alongside previous ANDRA champions from past years is an honour. “

MODIFIED BIKE – GAVIN DOHNT “The Nationals weekend was probably the strangest weekend of racing I have ever had, with second placed Tony Frost unfortunately crashing out Friday during qualifying it didn’t seem like the championship race was ‘on’ anymore because we have been chasing each other around all year. When Shane Walker went out in the second round, the feelings were hard to describe, happy to take the tree but wishing it came about by us winning rather than someone else not winning. It still feels a bit odd even now.”

SUPERCHARGED OUTLAWS – LUKE MARSDEN “It was like the thousands of man hours the team has put in over this season had come down to this one round of eliminations and as soon as that body got lowered it was then all up to me as a driver not to stuff up. “We worked well as a team, all the guys know their roles and we just try and do the same thing every round to keep a routine. Attention to detail was the key, this class is so competitive you can’t afford to waste runs, even in qualifying every run counts.”


SUPER GAS – MATTHEW FORBES “I’m not usually an emotional guy but I have to admit I had a good ol’ sook at the bottom end of the race track – (the victory) meant that much to me. “The pressure was on and we had to beat the best Super Gas racers in the country – defending champion Simon Isherwood in the second round and former champ Colin Griffin in the final. “My family has been fully behind me going racing again so I’m very happy that this means as much to Paula and our girls as it does to me.”

COMP BIKE – COREY BUTTIGIEG “The finals was a proper drag race against a good friend, the Geelong Harley V Rod won and it was perfect to all that helped win two trees in a day. “I was more excited for my crew and to have my wife and kids watching in the grand stands. We had a slow start to the year as the new bike was not ready, each meeting we attended was a whole complete new set up but we were going faster and faster, having silly issues on the way letting us down in the points.”

SUPER STREET – CARL TAYLOR “I went into the event in sixth place, so I was the cut off as far as having a chance of taking it out. When I ran the quarter final then it all became apparent that there was a little bit of pressure on me, because if I won the event I won the championship. When I’d actually won, words can’t describe how stoked how I was, it’s fantastic. “The car was just so consistent, I found a tune and stuck with it, I didn’t change anything, just trying to maintain that consistency, just trying to cut a light which isn’t easy at the best of times and just relying on the car to do what it did. It all fell into place.

JUNIOR DRAGSTER – BRAYDEN NAYLOR “I turned to my Dad and said “Dad we did it”! My sister Alicia was with us and some other WA racers who all congratulated us immediately. The first thing we did was get a photo together! “I really wanted the championship to dedicate for the family and my Grandmother who recently passed away. “The response from family and friends has been absolutely fantastic.”

MODIFIED - CRAIG BAKER “I think I felt numb when it all hit at the bottom end after first round. I already knew that two of the four contenders had lost in their runs already and the only other one left, good friend Kenny Stewart, was to follow me down the track. As he pulled into the braking area I gestured thumbs up or down, and he just shook his head - and then I knew it was ours. “We really focused on consistency this year. We knew we were nowhere near the top of the field in qualifying, but that didn’t matter because we knew the car ran true and consistent each time we fronted to the line. I still think that I can improve on my lights - and that’ll be the focus for next season.”





JOHN BAREMANS - CLOCKWISE 1) Romeo Capitanio blasts away from the Calder Park start line. 2) Terry Sainty’s early days in Top Fuel were often trying. 3) John Baremans (right) on crew duties with the Gatts. 4) Jim Read toasts a motor at Eastern Creek.


As part of the conclusion of ANDRA’s 40th year, Fastlane asked three long time drag racing photographers to dig into their archives and bring back some memories from the last four decades.

JOHN BAREMANS I don’t think there was an exact moment where I fell off my bike and hooked became on the sport of drag racing. I guess I had a fixation for the wild and crazy years of the 70s - hot rods, ED Roth style creations and custom metal flake paint jobs. In primary school I was a became a serial pest to a guy who had copies of Hot Rod Pictorials, which always featured dragsters, funny cars and altereds. I would spend hours in my room drawing cars and perfecting my craft from magazines I had purchased from lawn mowing duties. I was one of those kids who would ride his bike with his mates to Bankstown Square and Roselands Hot Rod Shows to watch all the cool cars unload and set up. My dad knew a guy who was in a club and I was allowed to polish the mags. My reward was a bunch of old American Drag newspapers, which I think I still have today (somewhere). As I grew older I irritated my father to take us out to Castlereagh International Dragway on a Saturday night. I use to see the ads in the Daily Mirror newspapers on Friday and got all excited. The first machine I saw was the American Auto Parts Goggomobile Funny Car driven my Norm Oakey. Finally I was seeing live the cars I had only every seen in magazines. I was hooked.


Once I was mobile with my own set of wheels I saw an ad in Rodsports/Drag News that CID placed looking for officials. I was no mechanic but I was keen to get involved and rub shoulders with the sport’s superstars. I became a scrutineer under the guidance of the late Joe Toranto, and then a bracket marshall. It was at CID were I took my Pentax camera and snapped away during a break from official duties. I even asked David Cook one time for some tips. Had some great times there especially during the big events. When Castlereagh closed the NSW Hot Rod Association conducted drag racing over 1000 feet at Oran Park for a number of years. Then came the news that drag racing would return to Sydney with a new facility at Eastern Creek. My first job was a graphic arts apprentice in the prepress trade but I was still a drag racing tragic, buying every magazine I could and still spending hours drawing cars. On the odd occasion some of my artwork would make the pages of Dragster Australia magazine and I was once asked to do a cover for the Nationals, which was huge for me. Then sometime in the 1980s a position was offered to me for the role as assistant editor. I took it and over the following 20 plus years worked alongside David and Jan Cook. ANDRA championship drag racing became too difficult to run at Eastern Creek under the ARDC so once again the sport took a punch to the head. The magazine had gone through some lean times and was sold, so David took up a role working on the Western Sydney International Dragway project. It was an enormous task but very rewarding when the government finally agreed to build a stand-alone quarter mile facility across the road from Eastern Creek. I continued working on Dragster Australia magazine and was still living the dream. I was able to get paid for doing something I loved and at the same time see all the stars both locally and internationally. I stopped counting the years I spent at Dragster Australia but I was often told that I was the longest serving employee.


While I have moved on from Dragster Australia magazine, my passion is still with drag racing. I’ve spent the greater part of my life reading, drawing, watching, writing and photographing the sport. I’ve witnessed many monumental moments and I’ve seen the sport lose many of its heroes. I’ve had a few close calls standing behind a concrete wall just feet away from 8,000 horsepower of Top Fuel fury, clutch explosions that set my hair almost on fire and doorslammers smashing right in front of me. My most recent incident occurred just this year when I was almost knocked over by a blower belt. That was a whack I won’t ever forget. In my early days it was all about the cars that pulled me to drag racing, but these days it’s the people behind the helmet that does it. The sport is full of wild and crazy characters that all have a story to tell. And then there are the pioneers who built the sport. The sport has been up and down more times I can remember but it’s the passion and the people who keep the wheels turning and the nitro burning. Now some 40 years later I’m still hooked.


STEVE THOMAS My introduction to drag racing came on April 17th, 1966, when six visiting US rails took to the surface of Castlereagh Drag Strip for the First Australian Drag Fest. I was just a 13 year old, naive school kid back then but that day impacted me to such an extent that the sport became a life-long passion and obsession. Even today, certain cars and events can generate the same degree of awe and excitement in me that I felt on that day 47 years ago. As the sport progressed through the 60s and 70s most of the cars gradually lost that initial ‘agricultural’ appearance and began to look like proper race cars, each with its own unique appearance. The old farts who grew up with the sport in those years refer to the era as our ‘Golden Age’, when there was only a limited amount of off-the-shelf speed equipment available, meaning that racers had to work out how to build and fabricate what they wanted. Most cars were given a personality, colourful paint jobs and the name emblazoned along the sides so they were instantly recognisable to the fans. Drag racing has and always will have performance barriers to be broken, both in elapsed times and speeds. These days there are no outright barriers left to be broken, only barriers for individual cars and brackets. To have grown up with drag racing at the time when the sport’s outright barriers were being broken was something special. Without including the times and speeds set by the visiting Americans, Australia’s first eight second pass was made by Eddie Thomas in April 1966, our first seven second pass was made by Graham Withers in November 1967 at the Nationals, Ash Marshal ran an unofficial six second pass in December 1972 and Jim Read ran the first official six in August 1973. Jim Read was also responsible for Australia’s first five second pass in November 1980 and it was Graeme Cowin to break into the fours for the first time in December 1993. Ash Marshall ran the first Australian 200mph pass in February 1969 and the first 300mph run went to Jim Read in December 2000. Yes, drag racing has changed in a huge way over the decades, not always for the best, but there’s no denying one thing - it is, without doubt, the most colourful, exciting and adrenalin-pumping sport in the world. Bruce Phillips races Panic in 1973, the year ANDRA was formed.

Pete Smith’s psychedelic Anglia is a reflection of the times in 1972.

The Hussey Bros dragster smokes the start line in 1973.

Castlereagh circa 1967 was a vastly different affair to today’s super tracks.


JON VAN DAAL Jon Van Daal started taking photos at Australian drag meetings in 1970 and then stepped up to a traditional SLR camera in 1974 – he is still out there covering ANDRA drag racing some 43 years later. One thing Jon has observed in his time in the sport is the improvements in safety that have come about. This assortment of images from the last forty years are a testament to ANDRA safety rules as no one was seriously injured in any of these incidents. 1) JOHN LUMB This photo of the Lumb & Phillips Torana Funny Car was taken at the Castlereagh drag strip at the 1974 Nationals. This was on the first roll of film that Jon ever put through a camera. The car was nearing the traps when its roof caved in leaving Lumb to try and steer his way to a safe stop which he managed to do. The car did very the same thing at the next meeting and the body was then swapped for a Mustang shell instead.



2) ANGELO PULUMBO When Sydney driver Angelo Palumbo had the crank break in his 392 Chrysler Hemi engine on a pass at Castlereagh it sent oil under the rear tyres and Palumbo was a passenger on an extremely scary ride. You can see that the entire bottom of the motor has been blown away (at left), the front wheel has broken off and Palumbo’s leg is protruding from the bottom of the frame. Fortunately he walked away without a scratch but never drove another race car again. 3) BOB SHEPHERD Before Bob Shepherd drove Top Fuel dragsters he was to be found behind the butterfly of various altereds and funny cars. “The Gambler” Camaro was competing at Eastern Creek Raceway when a burnout went awry. Shepherd hit the 60 foot clocks and went into a slow roll that saw him hitting the opposite wall backwards. Ever the showman he took a bow when he crawled out from the wreck unscathed. 4) GLENN MIKRES Journeyman American racer Glenn Mikres has spent a lot of time in Australia usually at the wheel or tuning one of Santo Rapisarda’s Top Fuel dragsters. On this qualifying run at Eastern Creek Mikres had the chassis’ top rails break and put him in this unenviable position after completing a 289 mph run. The car eventually broke in two and rolled to a stop in the soft earth beside the track with the American walking away without a scratch. 5) DARREN MORGAN There are no two ways about it – when you try and extract some 8,000 horsepower out of a nitro engine there is always the risk that it will let go in some way. As can be seen here, Darren Morgan had a major malfunction at the Nationals at Sydney Dragway when he smoked the tyres on the hit of the throttle and the blower backfired starting a flaming chain reaction. He was able to come back and run again. 6) ZAC PEIRANO After finishing another perfect run, Zac Peirano pulled the chutes on his front engine dragster however an oil line broke in the shutdown area and sprayed liquid under the car’s tyres. The result was this upside down stance with the blown Lexus powered engine also spraying oil into Peirano’s face, but the car came to a stop without any harm coming to the Queensland driver.








C O N G R AT U L AT I O N S T O T H E C H A M P I O N S O F 2 0 1 3 . P R O U D LY PA R T O F T H E 4 0





MICK ATHOLWOOD A very successful owner, tuner and driver across many of ANDRA’s years. Generous to all racers with his time, knowledge and experience and an outstanding example of the sportsmanship expected of ANDRA members.

The first five people to be inducted into the ANDRA Hall of Fame were honoured in November at the ANDRA Championship Dinner presented by Aeroflow Performance Products. The ANDRA Hall of Fame was announced as part of the 40th anniversary celebrations for Australia’s drag racing sanctioning body and members had a chance to nominate the people they considered the most worthy to ANDRA. Rather than recognising only racing achievements, the ANDRA Hall of Fame focuses on those people who have demonstrated creativity, dignity, integrity and accomplishment at a national or international level and enhanced the status or growth of the sport.

GEORGE BAILEY One of the longest serving divisional directors and a multiple record holder in Super Stock. Also served roles in the member National Control Council, National Executive Council and as Executive Director. All of this time was volunteered for the organisation.

ANDRA CEO Malcolm Bulley said the first induction celebrates the variety of contributions people can make to the sport of drag racing – from racing and promotion to volunteering and sportsmanship. “The ANDRA Hall of Fame is not solely about racing achievements but those people who have demonstrated a commitment to the association that goes above and beyond what is expected,” he said. “With this first induction, the ANDRA board wanted to show the many ways people can make a contribution to ANDRA and the sport of drag racing.

GRAEME COWIN A brilliant racer and a dedicated supporter of sportsman racers and grass roots drag racing. Always prepared to back the sport which has helped build his business.

“You don’t necessarily have to be a record setter or a championship winner, but to show dedication to ANDRA and the sport as a whole is a vital part of being inducted into the ANDRA Hall of Fame.” Atholwood (award accepted by Diane and Michael Atholwood), Bailey, Cowin, Rogers and Dennis Syrmis (award accepted by Sue Syrmis) were all recognised with white gold rings designed by Wallace Bishop Jewellers and life membership to ANDRA. Each acceptance speech was highly emotional, with the significance of the ANDRA Hall of Fame’s first inductions not lost on the 160-strong audience. The choice of recipients by the ANDRA Board was highly praised by the drag racing community. The national champions for each ANDRA category in the ANDRA Drag Racing Series and Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship were also recognised at the dinner including Darren Morgan (Top Fuel), Gary Phillips (Top Alcohol), John Zappia (Top Doorslammer), Jason Grima (Pro Stock), Chris Porter (Top Bike), Luke Crowley (Pro Stock Motorcycle), Greg Clayton (Competition), Darren Parker (Super Stock), Corey Buttigieg (Competition Bike), Rod Harvey (Super Compact), Luke Marsden (Supercharged Outlaws) who also won the John Storm Memorial Trophy for most points scored in a season, Craig Baker (Modified), Johnny Kapiris (Super Sedan), Gavin Dohnt (Modified Bike), Carl Taylor (Super Street), Brayden Naylor (Junior Dragster) and Matt Forbes (Super Gas).


PAUL ROGERS SNR Paul was at the first meeting of ANDRA and is believed to have come up with the name ANDRA. He has served multiple voluntary roles across the sport as well as competing in Pro Stock and Super Stock. He is also a founding member of the VDRC. Very few people have given as much time to the sport over the years as Paul.

DENNIS SYRMIS One of the most important administrative figures in the sport, Dennis is a former national director of ANDRA and was one of the sport’s most passionate promoters, helping build Queensland’s Willowbank Raceway into the magnificent venue it is today.






When junior drag racing was first introduced to Australia back in 1993, few could have imagined it would become as big as it is now.

Much of the original intention of the category was to develop a breeding ground for future racers and if two of the original junior pioneers are anything to go by it has certainly served that purpose over the last two decades. Brother and sister Scott Bettes and Kelly Corbett were there when the movement started and have since gone on to become talented sportsman racers, culminating in the final of the Australian Nationals in November when they became the first brother and sister pairing to face off in a final in the senior ranks.

At the Australian Nationals in November, brother and sister Scott Bettes and Kelly Corbett became the first brother and sister pairing to face off in a final in the senior ranks.

There were many fond memories between the pair of their first days of junior racing. Scott drove one of the first cars brought into the country, imported by Bob Jane. “Being the second Junior Dragster in the country is pretty cool, I had a lot of success in the JDs and really enjoyed racing them,” he said. “When Kelly also started racing it was really cool and we were both really competitive and still are.” Kelly said that they were exciting days and felt like super stars being able to drive on the same track as their heroes.




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“We were lucky enough to drive a car which was bought in from the USA by Bob Jane and this car will always hold a special place in our hearts,” she said. “It was Scott’s first car and my first car once he stepped out of it into a newer, faster car. It was great to be a part of the time where Junior Dragsters first came into the country and amazing to watch the category grow into what it is now.” Through much of their earlier years, Junior Dragsters were not awarded gold Christmas trees or Australian championships, but that eventually changed and the young drivers were given the chance to compete for the same honours as the rest of the sportsman brackets. “During my time racing Junior Dragsters the big events were never awarded properly, now they are,” Scott explained. “The fact that Kelly won the first championship for Junior Dragsters was really cool because I should have got it the year before, but it wasn’t part of a championship.” Getting an early start in drag racing provided opportunities to the Bettes family from an early age. Kelly recalled some of her fond memories from growing up drag racing. “There are so many memories I don’t even know where to begin,” she said. “Filming a TV story for Totally Wild when we were only very young, it was quite an experience! Our team used to be the girls (mum and I) and the boys (dad and Scott) and that was always good fun. “Drag racing has opened up many opportunities. Back in junior days we got to drive the dragsters around the Melbourne Grand Prix circuit and also do demos at the Gold Coast Indy car race. “I consider myself very lucky to have had the experiences I’ve had from racing, a lot of kids and adults wouldn’t get to do many things we have been able to and I’ll always value these memories.” New memories continue to be built on top of old, with Kelly becoming something of a ‘driver for hire’, racing the Jett Racing Super Compact ute and the Fastrack three-seater dragster. “Never did I think I’d be in this position, I just felt lucky enough to even have my Modified car and being able to travel with a good sponsor on board,” she said. “I am still blown away with how driving the Jett Racing ute came about. It’s been such an awesome experience for me and has taken me to a place in my racing that I only ever dreamt about.

15 TEES $


“The Fastrack cars are great, to see the excitement on people’s faces and hear their joy as they come out of the car is priceless. It really makes me happy to be able to show people why we all love the sport. “To be honest drag racing is almost everything to me. I know that’s probably not a great thing but it is! I love everything about it and yes it has its down moments but they only make you stronger. I’m very excited about my future in the sport.” Scott’s passion echoes that of his sister, though he sat out some years between Junior Dragsters and Modified. “Just before my first win at the bracket meeting at Willowbank (before the Nationals) I was seriously doubting whether I could do it anymore,” he said. “Now to have two wins in two weeks it’s pretty amazing. “Drag racing means everything to me, even more after the last couple of weeks. I live and breathe it. I would love to step up one day. The ultimate would be Pro Stock, but I’ll see what happens.” At the Australian Nationals last month, the siblings got to experience their first final against each other in the big leagues. On this occasion it was Scott coming out the victor with Kelly going red by just -0.001.




“ It was really special having Kelly beside me for that final ”

“It was really special having Kelly beside me for that final, they say that you have to run your own race and not focus on who is in the other lane but of course I knew she was there and it added a bit of pressure,” he said. “You always want your family to do well, but in this case there is no hiding I am pretty happy with how things panned out! “In all seriousness though, it was really awesome to have her there beside me as I got my first national event win.” For Corbett, it was a case of mixed emotions following the final round of the season-ending event.

tree and to be able to claim that national event win as his own,” said Corbett, the 2009/2010 ANDRA Modified Champion. “At the same time, I was really disappointed about red-lighting by one thousandth of a second – but that is racing and looking at the data even if I had pulled a perfect reaction time I think it would have been hard to beat him with how the conditions were and how he was running. “The overarching emotion is definitely one of pride in my brother, I am so pleased to be able to congratulate him on his win and welcome him to the ‘Christmas tree’ club – we always have fun racing as a family and I am sure there will be plenty more fun times to come.”

“It was so very special to be part of Scott’s first national event win, I am obviously so very happy for him to have won himself a gold Christmas

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A SPRING Ben Bray, Aaron Tremayne and Scott White mastered potent conditions at the Lady Daly Hotel Springnationals as the ANDRA Drag Racing Series and the Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship rocked Adelaide International Raceway. Bray’s win in Top Doorslammer was his first since the 2008 Winternationals, a long time between drinks for the former champion. Victory tasted even sweeter by virtue of the chaotic path Bray took to the final, including burning up pistons in the first qualifying session necessitating a night-long rebuild and then throwing off a door in the braking area during the semi finals.

Tremayne top qualified, set low elapsed time of the event with a track record 7.026 in the first round and also earned top speed points for his 195.10mph clocking.

“Once you’ve got one win the monkey is off the back and who knows, we might get some good ones in now.”

“The final was a real close race against Shane, we’re good mates and we have some great competition against each other,” he said. “My thing moved really bad through the middle but I looked over and had him.

“If there’s no drama there’s no fairy tale ending,” Bray mused afterwards. “The door thing was just one of those crazy experiences.

“We’ve had good power back for a couple of meetings now and it’s about getting on top of the car more than the engines at the moment.”

“None of my boys want to pack up right now, they just want to go home to bed - I don’t think we’ve even had breakfast yet. But when you get the win it’s all worth it.”

Pro Stock Motorcycle saw a first time winner with Darwin’s Scott White defeating local hopeful Phil Howard.

In Pro Stock, Aaron Tremayne capped off a near perfect weekend with a 7.067 win over Shane Tucker’s 7.054, a quicker .049 reaction time to Tucker’s .070 the deciding factor.

qualifier and we ran good numbers.

“All the travel and all the work pays off. It’s unbelievable to finally get a win in,” White said.

Aaron Tremayne and Lee Bektash in the Adelaide staging lanes.

“Eventually you’ve got to have a turn if you keep poking away at it. But it wasn’t as if we just stumbled into it, we were second

RESULTS Top Doorslammer: Ben Bray 5.170 def John Zappia 5.200 Pro Stock: Aaron Tremayne 7.067 def Shane Tucker 7.054 Pro Stock Motorcycle: Scott White 7.441 def Phil Howard 7.702

‘Methanol Mike’ stages in Modified.

Super Comp: Wayne Cartledge 6.238 (6.21) def Jason Maggs 5.845 (5.77) Supercharged Outlaws: Grant Fraser 6.148 (6.10) def Peter Datsun 20.265 (5.88) Modified: Jessica Turner 9.622 (8.09) def Leanne Braggs 9.074 (7.44) Super Sedan: Johnny Kapiris 9.909 (9.83) def Steve Fowler 7.872 (6.98) Modified Bike: Brendan Sanders 10.676 (10.60) def Niki Zakrzewski 9.327 (9.15) Super Street: Harry Harris 11.635 (11.62) def John Adami 11.188 (11.21) Junior Dragster: Matthew Matulovich 8.088 (8.07) def Brayden Naylor 8.216 (8.06) Super Gas: Darryl Stephen 9.951 (9.90) def Renee Cockerill 10.014 (9.90)


Wayne Cartledge took a win in Competition.

G IN THE STEP Ben Bray took his first win in some five years in Top Doorslammer.

Scott White claimed his first Pro Stock Motorcycle win.

Murray O’Connor would miss the field for Top Doorslammer despite his popular burnouts.

Phil Howard made the Pro Stock Motorcycle final.




STORM The ANDRA Drag Racing Series marked its return after 12 years away from Australia’s sporting capital with thrilling action across three ANDRA pro categories as Fuchs Nitro Thunder presented by Crow Cams took place in front of 7000 Melbourne motorsports fans.


Cameron Ambesi represented in Super Comp.

Championship contenders chat in the lanes.

Darren Morgan’s team watches him head down track.

Luke Crowley extended his championship lead in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

The two Fuchs cars looked amazing side by side.

Graeme Morell again showed the importance of consistency in Top Bike.

Morgan defeated event debutante John Lamattina in a close fought final with Morgan’s 4.322 narrowly defeating a 4.556 from Lamattina. Morgan paid credit to his crew for their efforts not just at Fuchs Nitro Thunder presented by Crow Cams but across the whole season. “This crew has been amazing not just today but every time they go to work on this car,” he said. “(Crew chief) Ben Patterson took a bit of a stab at the tune up today after we had an ignition shut off on one run and then a seized fuel pump in a warm up and sure enough it went down there – he got it right and to do that twice in one day is full credit to him.” Luke Crowley defeated Phil Howard in the final of Pro Stock Motorcycle, the Queenslander crossing the line ahead of the South Australian. “We’ve needed a win for a long time now, my crew guys have been slapping me over

the back of the head all year so it was good to get out and earn another trophy,” he said. Things did not come easy for Crowley, having to replace a transmission during the day after breaking a thrust washer in his first gearbox. “We put a brand new transmission in it, a new set up and prayed for the first round to be postponed so we could make it there,” he said. “We didn’t know if it was going to shift gears but it worked so from then we went about hotting it up and tuning it up from there.”

Paul Cibotto gets the wheels up in his Ford Mustang.

In Top Bike Graeme Morell again proved consistency is king with his small-cube nitro Harley defeating Dennis Grant in the final 6.503 to 6.614. “I’ve really got my bike cracking now, the way it carries the front wheel is great and it’s the way they should be ridden. We had the consistency today but we were actually quick too,” he said. Wade Kisyma launches in Modified.




The Australian Nationals finished the longest ANDRA season in decades at Sydney Dragway with dramatic final rounds crowning the champions in hot and windy conditions. It was a brother and sister final in Modified as Scott Bettes defeated Kelly Corbett.

As well as a Top Alcohol championship, Gary Phillips enjoyed a semi finals appearance in Top Doorslammer.

Carl Taylor celebrates a Super Street championship.

Sean Mifud qualified for the Top Doorslammer field.

Ben Bray’s bright yellow Dewalt Monaro blew a transmission.

Tommy Johnson and Santino Rapisarda share a gold Christmas tree.

The Top Bike final was wheels up action.


ONALS The natmo dragsters of Wayne Cartledge and Tony Bellert in Competition qualifying.

John Zappia won the Top Doorslammer championship in dramatic circumstances.

Gina Bullians top qualified for Super Compact.

American Tommy Johnson Jr earned his first win on Australia soil, adding to his nine NHRA victories. It was an all-Rapisarda Autosport International final with Johnson using a 4.807 run in the final to defeat team mate Damien Harris’ 4.933. It capped off a week of good news for Johnson, who found out last week he would be driving for Don Schumacher Racing full time in the NHRA next season. “Career wise the last three or four years have been real rocky and then the last seven days have been pretty stellar,” he said. “I’m really thankful for the opportunity the Rapisardas gave me. To come back and finally get a victory in the last time I will race with them for a while, it just fits the way everything is going. “I don’t think it’s the last time (racing for Rapisardas), it’s just the last time for a while. The people have been great, I’ve had fun, and that’s what racing is about.” Johnson said conditions challenged the Top Fuel teams.

“It was some of the more difficult conditions we’ve raced in,” he said. “First a hot racetrack and then the wind which covered it in dust and dirt. “It was figuring out who could go the furthest without getting loose. You could run pretty good early, then we were pulling it back as much as we could. Top Doorslammer was an epic where John Zappia won not only the final but also a tightly fought championship, earning just enough points to overcome Peter Kapiris. Zappia’s 6.071 in the final defeated a 6.204 from Victor Bray. “When Pete qualified number two I thought this would be hard to do but we were just lucky the track conditions were tricky for everybody so no one had a real handle on it,” he said. Zappia said next season he would like to see a less stressful end to the ANDRA Top Doorslammer series. “Next season we ain’t giving no one a head start,” he said. “We are going to try and hit it hard

Matthew Forbes won the event and the championship in Super Gas.

starting in Perth to stay in front - it’s too stressful this way.” Gary Phillips picked up not only a win in the final round of Top Alcohol against Steven Ham but also the quickest time of the event with a 5.497 blast defeating a 5.618. Phillips said the performance had been at his fingertips all weekend. “The thing should have been faster all event than what it was but we were just missing the ball a little bit,” he said. “We knew the car had it in there and it was sure a handful to drive in the final.” Phillips, who wrapped up the Top Alcohol title in Darwin in August, said work on reaction times also proved fruitful. “I finally cut a good a light, so what we learned in testing showed in racing,” he said. “I’ve always driven on the conservative side but now you need everything so I’ve got to get into it.” Chris Soldatos experienced one of the more up and down weekends of any racer at Sydney Dragway, starting with going into the sand trap FASTLANE I 27

in qualifying but finishing with a 7.130 second Pro Stock win denying Jason Grima his first event victory.

It came after a frantic engine change after his semi final race against Gavin Spann.

“The weekend started off badly after we damaged our beautiful car, but we fixed it up and thankfully it well – we needed that luck on our side,” he said.

“Graeme has got us two times so it was good to get him this time,” he said. “In the semi final we lifted a cylinder and punched a rod out so we had to do a motor change. The boys flogged and got it done in two hours.”

Soldatos also earned the Greg Flaherty Memorial trophy for his win, recognising a former legend in the category. Grima did not go home empty handed, taking the championship in an emotional moment for the PC Group team. “I was ecstatic, I got really emotional, but that is part and parcel with it,” he said. “The first win will come, we’re making it easier and easier on ourselves.” Chris Porter took a Nationals double, also winning the Top Bike championship as he defeated Graeme Morell in the final, 7.187 to a 7.931.

Finally in Pro Stock Motorcycle, Maurice Allen made up for a disappointing Fuchs Nitro Thunder presented by Crow Cams, taking Nationals victory after Luke Crowley red lit in the final. “We broke the crank in two in Calder two weeks ago, the engine went straight in the bin,” he said. “We weren’t overly confident but we knew we had an engine at least that ran. We wanted to end the season with some representation and do well for Milwaukee Tools. “We knew we had consistency and good form. We realised the engine was as good as it needed to be. You need to gout there and have belief in what you’re doing.” Luke Crowley won the Pro Stock Motorcycle championship but red lit in the final.


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“The wind and the conditions just kills these cars, but we got through, the crew did a good job and I drove it alright I suppose. I never thought I would get a result like this in Pro Stock.”


21/08/13 12:11 PM

This race would prove critical for Jason Grima - giving him the championship.

RESULTS Top Fuel: Tommy Johnson Jr 4.807 def Damien Harris 4.933 Top Doorslammer: John Zappia 6.071 def Victor Bray 6.204 Top Alcohol: Gary Phillips 5.497 def Steven Ham 5.618 Pro Stock: Chris Soldatos 7.130 def Jason Grima 7.205 Top Bike: Chris Porter 7.187 def Graeme Morell 7.931 Pro Stock Motorcycle: Maurice Allen 7.449 def Luke Crowley 7.658 (red light) Competition: Greg Leahy 6.952 (6.87) def Greg Clayton 6.117 (6.46, red light) Super Stock: Darren Parker 7.447 (7.68) def Clint George 7.514 (7.71) Competition Bike: Corey Buttigieg 8.478 (8.79) def Daryn Schuster 8.637 (8.94) Super Compact: Domenic Rigoli 7.392 (7.64) def Jason Both 7.847 (7.20) Supercharged Outlaws: Luke Marsden 6.779 (6.68) def Shannon Gaddes 8.933 (6.72, red light) Modified: Scott Bettes 7.731 (7.65) def Kelly Corbett 7.570 (7.46, red light) Super Sedan: Neil Constantinou 10.075 (10.01) def Jim Denaro 9.888 (9.81) Modified Bike: Sam Taylor 9.480 (9.28) def Kevin Cleeve 9.266 (8.86, red light) Super Street: Carl Taylor 11.358 (11.29) def Robert Winterburn 11.787 (11.64) Junior Dragster: Dale Duffy 8.269 (7.99) def Tim Barron NTR Super Gas: Matthew Forbes 9.970 (9.90) def Colin Griffin 10.028 (9.90)




When housing began to encroach on Ravenswood International Raceway, Western Australia needed a new home for drag racing. At the same time, the iconic Claremont Speedway was also in search of a new place to race and so the development of Perth Motorplex by the WA State Government took place. That is a simplification of a lot of hard work by many people behind the scenes, but what it did was ensure a seamless transition to what remains one of the best venues in Australia. Perth Motorplex opened in December 2000 and with its prime location just 25 minutes from the Perth CBD has remained popular with spectators and racers ever since both for the drag strip and the dirt track speedway next door. The venue introduced many features racers in WA had not seen before including a concrete surface to 330 feet, a long uphill braking area (replacing Ravenswood’s notoriously short, and flat, one), better corporate facilities and far better spectator viewing areas. The Motorplex will play host to the opening round of the ANDRA Drag Racing Series on January 10-11, 2014 featuring rounds of Top Fuel and Top Fuel Motorcycle as well as the second round of the Aeroflow Sportsman Drag Racing Championship.




Location: Kwinana Beach, Western Australia Altitude: 21 metres {68 feet} Racing Surface Length Quarter mile (402 metres), concrete to 330 feet (100 metres). Braking Area Length 600 metres asphalt, 117 metres sand trap. Track Record: 4.58 (Phil Read), 333mph (Phil Lamattina)

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Fastlane Ed 6  

Australian National Drag Racing Association

Fastlane Ed 6  

Australian National Drag Racing Association