The 2015/2016 Summit Racing Equipment Sportsman Series is off to a flying start following the 2015 Desert Nationals at Alice Springs Inland Dragway on the weekend.
While the racers were the stars of the show, the volunteers of the Central Australian Drag Racing Association (CADRA) were gracious hosts delivering a quality event in front of a healthy Red Centre crowd.
Winners of the event were Craig Geddes (Super Comp), Darren White (Supercharged Outlaws), Simon Barlow (Modified), John Kapiris (Super Sedan), Brian Moore (Modified Bike), Harry Harris (Super Street) and Josh Baker (Junior Dragster).
Although few in numbers, Super Comp was all about quality not quantity as five new National eighth-mile records were set while Geddes got his title tilt off to the perfect start.
Having qualified first in Super Comp, Victorian Geddes went on to claim the event win over Kim Fardella in the final, set new elapsed time and speed records for the B/D classification and takes home the Gridstar by YBI Creative Best Appearing Team Award for a perfect sweep.
“We’re very pleased,” said Geddes. “Winning the Best Appearing Award is something we pride ourselves on having nice stuff, being presentable for the sport and putting the sport forward in a nice manner.
“The car is going great, we’ve really got a handle on it now. We’ve got a nice head start in the Championship points and it’s something to build on as we move into the future. And we’re very pleased to be supporting ANDRA in these regional events, we’ll continue to do that and have a great time.
“It was an awesome job by all the guys and girls and track officials. The event ran like clockwork, we couldn’t fault anything it was just the perfect weekend for us.”
Geddes defeated David Dequen in Round 1, accepted a solo victory in the semi finals and finished off the job against Fardella with a 4.633 ET at 148.51 mph on the 4.78 index from a 5.439 at 127.84 mph on a 5.49 index.
The final speed for Geddes was a new National record as was his 4.615 ET in Round 1. Fardella also set a new speed record for the D/G class going 128.57 mph.
Others in the record books were Steve Norman who reset the C/APA class to an ET of 5.073 and 135.95 mph while David Dequen set a new E/AA speed record reaching 143.77 mph. Alice Springs Inland Dragway now boasts 10 National records set in the past 12 months.
As Supercharged Outlaws top qualifier, Darren White had a solo Round 1 pass but he got the job done when it mattered defeating Troy Wittwer in a heavyweight semi final.
White was to meet 2014 Champion Doina Day in the final but unfortunately Day was unable to get the dragster started leaving White to take a solo 4.440 second win at 167.91 mph on a 4.41 dial in.
“We’re relieved,” said White. “In Darwin before we got here it was a 4:30am morning and a 5am morning to sort the engine out with a bit of work to do when we got here. In the end it all turned out great, the car was all in one piece and did what it was supposed to. It was a big effort by all the crew, unbelievable.
“The Desert Nationals is awesome. The whole crowd that looks after it and runs the show were great. No one hesitates at all to lend a hand, it’s great.”
Local Alice Springs resident Brian Moore scored a popular win in Modified Bike taking home his first ever ANDRA Christmas Tree trophy in a final against 2014 Desert Nationals winner Bryan Finn.
Finn broke out going quicker than his 7.15 second dial in with a 7.112 ET allowing Moore to the hometown win with a 6.796 ET at 93.56 mph on a 660 dial in.
“I don’t know what to say it’s just been an awesome weekend,” said Moore. “I was lucky that Finny broke out because I had drama with my air shifter so I’m very happy. Words can’t describe it.
“Once again CADRA put on an awesome show together with Motorsports NT. Everyone put in, I know how hard everyone has worked here to get it going, everyone seems happy and the track was fantastic.”
Moore eliminated Gordon Crawford and Malcolm Price before a solo effort saw him into the final.
Other winners and grinners were Simon Barlow who defeated Matt Forbes in the Modified final. John Kapiris secured back-to-back Desert Nationals titles over Brett Matthew in Super Sedan. Harry Harris ended Kylie Tanner’s hopes of a Desert Nationals three-peat with victory in Super Street. And last but not least Josh Baker got a big win in Junior Dragster over Brodie Zappia.
The Summit Racing Equipment Sportsman Series now moves on to Adelaide for Round 2 at the 2015 Springnationals October 17-18.