The West Australian drag racing season has finished on a high note with the running of the 96fm Powerpalooza at Perth Motorplex on Saturday.
Arguably the most exciting finish to any championship was in Competition Bike, which came down to the last race of the season between Phill Paton and Wayne Patterson, who had swapped the points lead multiple times. Paton’s .007sec. reaction time (the amount of time between the green light coming on and the motorcycle moving) proved the critical moment, gaining almost two tenths of a second on Patterson at the start line.
“To be honest, .007 is a little close to -0.001 (a foul start) for comfort,” said Paton.
Russell Ladbrook took the win in a strong Top Comp field, using a 5.64sec. run to take the win over Aaron Deery. The pass was a personal best time for Ladbrook, who would finish second in the overall championship to Stu Moresby.
Super Comp saw a fitting final round between the number one and two finishers in the championship, Jamie Chaisty and Ralph Lewis. Though Chaisty had wrapped up the points by virtue of a semi finals win, Lewis was able to take bragging rights with a 7.28sec. win in the final.
After a season of few rewards, Matt Abel and the Fun-da-mental Nitro Funny Car finally managed a run the team were happy with during some exhibition sessions at the 96fm Powerpalooza. Abel clocked a 5.65sec. pass at 412kmh. Crew chief and car owner Rory Taylor said the team had discovered an electrical problem in the car that had cursed many of their runs for the season so far.
Jon Ferguson picked up his first Supercharged Outlaws win since rebuilding his 1957 Chev, taking a solo run in the final after opponent Darryl Mullins was unable to front.
Paul Downe won in Top Sportsman with his Holden Commodore, defeating Jake Lane’s Holden Torana in the final. However Johnny Brecich just squeaked in to take the Championship by only 5 points over Downe.
Modified featured a first time winner, as Ralph Italiano took home the trophy for the first time, driving the Adamos family dragster. Italiano’s 7.87sec. final round pass defeated Mark Grieve, who left with a red light (foul start). Long time Super Street racer Nicholas Wroe held on to take the Modified championship after steeping into his Altered for the first time this season.
The success for the Adamos family did not end there, with Laurence Adamos taking the win in Super Sedan, defeating Nick Panagopoulos in a race with a margin of victory of just thirteen thousandths of a second. Martin Mirco who dominated the Super Sedan Bracket all season went out early but still had enough in the bank to wrap up the championship.
Modified Bike’s championship contest saw Bruce Jones emerge as the number one following a semi finals appearance. With incoming points leader Paul Nieuwhof falling in the first round, the door was opened for Jones to take the series. Ian Glatz would claim victory on the day however, defeating Ross Townson in the final.
Like Modified Bike, Super Street’s championship was decided late in the piece in a semi final confrontation between number one and two in the points, Darran Bakranich and Steph Gullotto. Bakranich’s win proved the critical moment and he would earn his first Super Street State title after being runner up three times before. Bakranich looked to put the cherry on top with a win at the 96fm Powerpalooza, but Josh Holgate pulled out all stops and took his first win of the season.