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Adelaide could not if wished for better weather for the "Drag Racing for Charity Day". With temperatures in the mid twenties we were anticipating a good crowd, but as day turned to night, spectator numbers swelled to approximately 20,000, the biggest crowd seen at Adelaide International Raceway for 5 years. It was a great day for the 3 Charities set to benefit from the days proceedings, the Julian Burton Burns Trust, the Mary Potter Hospice and the Masonic Lodge....


Junior Dragster had 2 entrants, Neil Mellett and Shane Davison, with Shane coming all the way from Queensland to drive Neil's old Junior Dragster. It was a see sawing battle throughout the day, which saw wins for both camps, but Neil won the finals with an 8.95 @ 72.75. Shane's disappointment would of been eased slightly when he cut a perfect 4.00 light in the 3rd round and won a $500 prize from Deno's Cranes.


Super Street proved to be an interesting bracket, with 5 racers giving themselves an early night in the first round. Jim Ionnididis advanced through to the quarters with some great wheels up action in Angelo Sissis' 400cube Torana. Darren Kellaway red lit in round 2 and handed a win to Darren Mallison in his super consistant Mitsubishi Ute. Paul Russo managed a 11.294 @ 106 mph in his VR Ute and put Michael De Rose out for the night. The final was between Rob Sitro and Darren Mallison, with Mallison taking the win, a R/T of .434 and a time of 12.65@108 mph on a 12.67 dial in, Rob Sitro ran a 11.034 @116 on a 11.10 with a .431 R/T.


Modified bike was won by Toni Keating on his C/MB TZ 350 LC Yamaha with a time of 11.801 @110.25 mph. Tony has the distinction of having the most number of passes at AIR of anyone and a meeting wouldn't be the same without seeing him there.


Mitch Orchison seems to be getting more and more consistant every time he races.An opening time of 8.380 on an 8.35 DI with a reaction time of .473 followed up by an 8.366 on an 8.35 meant he was headed for the finals. Dennis Chapman was knocked out in round 1 by Mitch, but still managed a very respectable 8.797 @145.02 on an 8.75 DI and had a reaction time of .636. Gary Busch made quick work of Daryl Brown's Chrysler 6 pack with a R/T of .427 in the first round and then faced Simon Barlow in the semi's. Busch won against Barlow with a 8.475 on a DI of 8.40 to Barlows 8.022 on a DI of 8.03 and continued on his way to the finals. Gary Busch's experience paid off at the end of the night with a win over Mitch, his final run being 8.456 @142.15.


There were only 4 Super Gas cars in the event. Bruno Romeo in his MK 1 Cortina beat Reg Roberts in his Holden 350 Ute, with a time of 9.965 @129.16 to Reg's 10.350 on the Super Gas index of 9.90. Gavin Rahlf had problems in his MK 1 Escort putting Renee Cockerill into the final with Bruno. Renee's Big Block Hotrod is always consistant and ran a 10.028 @123 mph and won the night as Bruno broke out with a 9.868@131 mph.


With the Super Sedan Bracket a Memorial Race for Vince Macheda, a long time and popular racer. It was fitting that Vince's brother Ross won the Final against Mick Yafantidis in Vince's Chevy Luv Ute. Mick Mahoney red lit in his usually very consistant Capri in the first round against Ross. Reg Roberts and Lance Larcombe were also premature with the right foot and called it a night.Rob Godnic went through to the semi's in his LX Hatchback with a 10.671 @124 on a DI 10.66 after Garry Johnson broke in his 454 Holden. Shane Kramer is still sorting out his blown 560 Pontiac with David Lee but beat regular racer Paul Roberts in his 383 Torana. The Pontiac ran a best of 8.80 for meet and launched hard all day on the back wheels, giving the spectators plenty to cheer about. Shane left too early in the second round and gave Mick Yafanditis the green to go into the semi's for a bye run. Ross Macheda beat Godnic in the quarters thanks to Godnick breaking out and he met Yaffa in the Final. Mick was too early off the lights and handed the win to Ross Macheda in the Chevy Luv Ute, who finished his run at a 10.465 @ 113.40 mph.


Competition eliminator saw Michael Ali pull the biggest wheelstands of the meet, every run was exciting, as the front wheels carried past the Christmas tree.The Red B/A Altered with the 500 cube twin carb Altered was #1 qualifier with a 7.98. Anguel Athanasov had his new car out ( Paul Greghini's old chassis) but handed the reins over to John Handly for the meet, with the boys from West Torrens Dyno Centre using the meet for testing purposes. Len Leonard looked like he was having fun in Michael Fuss' A/AD before he broke out in the first round.Michael Ali progressed to the semi's by beating Lou Raschella in his AA/AP VQ Statesmen. Simon Miller had an easy win over Michael Fuss'AA/AP LH Hatchback after it had trouble, slowing to a 49 mph terminal speed.Miller had an easy win over Anguel's Statesman in the semi's and met Ali in the Final. Michael broke and left Simon to a rolling win in his Blown 346 Chrysler powered CC/DA Dragster.


Enzo Dimizio and Tony Caroscio were the entrants for Super Stock and both had good runs during qualifying. Enzo in his B/G Chevy Lumina ran a under his index of 8.39 on several runs. An 8.122 @167.87 mph, 8.055 @166 and an 8.053 @168.13. Tony usually runs consistant 10.1's in his C/MS Pontiac but after a 10.056 @133 mph he ran 2 sub 10 second runs. the first being a 9.965 @135.37 and the second a 9.976 @ 135.64 mph.


It was time for the big boys and they didn't disappoint the crowd.With monster burnouts and low 7 second passes it was a great spectacle. Dennis Grant on his Nitro Harley was still having some underlying problems from his brush with the wall in Sydney. It took many late nights just to get the bike to the track on Staurday and it was great to see local Privateer Dennis and his crew mix it with the Jack Daniels Team. Round 1 saw Troy run a single pass at 7.737 @ 129.14. Brett Stevens got the wood over Dennis and ran a 7.260 @ 149 to a 9.451 @ a slowing 97mph. Round 2 and Troy backed his first pass up with a 7.520@141.30 mph while Dennis was having problems and rolled over the finish line.Dennis had a single run but broke, so it was left to Brett the Boss Stevens and Troy Mclean to entertain the crowd in the final. Well the Jack Daniels boys did that indeed with side by side passes of 7.180 @163.84 mph for the Boss and Troy ran a 7.175 @ 155 mph but had a slower R/T of .635 to Bretts .526.


With only 2 Doorslammers making the field, Brett Stevens and Paul Greghini set about showing Adelaide what they have been missing for the last 5 years. Bretts first run in the afternoon blew the cobwebs out of our ears and made the crowd cheer. An ear shattering run of 6.342 @ 226.41 made an appreciative crowd go wild. Brett made 3 more passes for the day, with a 6.7 @201 a 6.584 @ 219 and the 20,000 strong were on their feet screaming. Paul Greghini made a slowing first run of 8.525 @ 106 mph and had some trouble during the night, but on the last side by side race he went 6.867 @ 164.41, while Brett's last time was 6.552 @ 212.76 mph.

Throughout the day and night, we were treated to Stunt Bikes, A Drift Demo and Gary Myers performed a few Huge burnouts which really revved up the masses. We saw some Pro Bike Demo runs from Trevor Birrel and his new charge Nevil Langley on the Dutch Master Bike. Jason Lee was the pilot on the other bike together with Bluey Howard, it made for some great racing.

It was a fantastic day
Mark Cuffe


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