Western Australia’s Mark Sheehan comes into Coates Hire West Coast Nitro with a small advantage over the field, having spent Wednesday testing his 10,000 horsepower nitro-fuelled dragster at Perth Motorplex.
The team recently moved from a five disc clutch to a six disc clutch, which should provide more adjustability down the track but does require a new baseline.
Sheehan made two runs, shutting off after quarter track on each pass, with American crew chief John Smith perusing the data after each.
“We just wanted to do some more solid testing with our new clutch set up,” Sheehan said. “We wanted some good solid data and to build from there.
“On the first run had new flywheels and (clutch) hats and things like that so we were a little bit calm to start with but it still went .87 to 60 feet so we were happy with that.”
The first 60 feet of the race track is a vital measurement for teams, determining how hard they are leaving the start line.
“The car felt good, it had a little bit of movement around but that is what they do.
“The second run we stepped it up a little bit more, it was a nice solid run to start working from and to get ready for Friday night.”
Sheehan hopes to be well and truly over 500kmh on the two days of Coates Hire West Coast Nitro – with eyes even for the 330mph mark eventually.
He will take on Victoria’s Darren Morgan, New South Wales’ Wayne Newby and fellow Western Australian Damien Harris across the event.