Meremere Dragway’s annual Nitro Shootout has continued its status as the fastest day of the year for New Zealand motorsport.
On Saturday Auckland racer Anthony Marsh blasted to the fastest and quickest pass ever seen on a Kiwi quarter-mile.
Anthony Marsh. Picture/Colin Smith.
The Mount Shop/Marsh Motorsport Top Fuel dragster stopped the clocks in 4.789secs as it raced through the finish line at 315.1mph in Saturday’s opening round of nitro racing action.
Having raced into the 4-second bracket and to beyond 300mph last summer, Marsh’s early afternoon effort yesterday also powers through the metric drag racing performance benchmark of 500km/h. The finish line speed equates to 507.1km/h.
Anthony Marsh.Picture/Colin Smith.
The Marsh car has been updated since its last appearance in March 2015 and team boss Tony Marsh said the first run delivered exactly what the team had expected from a conservative tune-up.
It’s the third Nitro Shootout January match-race contest between Marsh Motorsport and the Fish Family Racing fueller driven by Reece Fish.
Fish had engine problems at the end of the first run and recorded 5.379secs at 232.4mph.
The second run was an expensive one for both teams. Marsh’s engine broke a lifter and hydrauliced at the first hit of throttle. Fish made it to the finish line trailing a fireball as a con rod broke.
Reece Fish. Picture/ Colin Smith.
Marsh was out for the day while FFR installed a new engine for a third round but smoked the tyres from the start. It means for the third year Fish wins the Nitro Shootout match race but Marsh ends the day with the best numbers in the record book.
In other nitro action Pokeno’s Athol Williams ended the day with an impressive 6.576s/223.7mph pass on his Top Fuel Drag Bike.
Pokeno’s Athol Williams. Picture/Colin Smith.
Top Alcohol had an impressive 10 entries but it was consistency that won through when a number of teams were sidelined by problems.
It was Alexandra’s Bryan Norman in his new Hemi-powered front-engine dragster who produced low 7.0secs runs all day and beat Masterton’s Dwayne Garrett in the final.
After five rounds of DYO (dial you own) racing eliminations it was Pukekohe’s Lee Sherwin in his 8.2-litre Ford Escort who claimed the Super Sedan honours ahead of Waiuku’s Ray Peterson (Ford Mustang).
Mark Bardsley won the Top Doorslammer category in his 1968 Camaro and Pro Nostalgia saw two big-block Chev engined Ford T altereds advance to the final with Neville Smith (Whitford) defeating Bomber Jamieson (Cambridge).
Christchurch’s Alsop Racing team continued their assault on the BB/Altered national record with the crowed pleasing supercharged `41 Willys Coupe. Johnny Alsop made three 6.3secs runs on Saturday and improved on his 6.354s run in November to stop the clocks with a 6.301s pass late in the day.