Mark Sheehan put a stop to Darren Morgan’s winning streak on Saturday night at Perth Motorplex, taking victory in spectacular fashion in the third round of the ANDRA Top Fuel championship.
Sheehan defeated Morgan in the opening round and then went on to eliminate Phil Lamattina, who remains winless this season despite three straight finals appearances in the Fuchs dragster.
The final was a dramatic nitro pedal-fest, with both drivers on and off the throttle as they attempted to get 8000 horsepower to hook up to a cooling race track. Sheehan’s 5.40 just nudged over the finish line ahead of a 5.55 from Lamattina.
Sheehan was just able to survive a big top end charge from Lamattina, giving him his second event win in a row at Perth Motorplex out of his three events total in the category.
The Western Australian driver said he did feel a little guilty about playing the spoiler in Morgan’s otherwise perfect season.
“A win’s a win and I’m proud for all the guys on my team but I felt genuinely bad about beating Darren,” he said. “However all these guys are serious competitors so it is good to be able to have a win against them.
“We’re still waiting to take that ‘solid’ win where we can come out and run some regular 4.60s and really earn it.”
Sheehan said he is still gathering experience in finessing the dragster at speeds approaching 500kmh.
“The car hasn’t even got 20 laps on it yet and I’m still learning to drive it, I’m being a little too aggressive at the wheel,” he said. “But every lap is getting better and all the little things are starting to string together so it becomes fast all over.”
Lamattina was able to move well within striking range of Darren Morgan’s championship lead, with just nine points separating the two, thanks to the runner up and bonus points for low ET and top speed following a 4.66/522.86kmh pass in the first round.
The second round of the ANDRA Top Bike championship also presented an upset winner as Terry Burnett won his first ever national event.
The Western Australian rider used a 7.07 time in the final to defeat Graeme Morell who was also seeking his first win.
It was just Burnett’s fourth time in competition but putting together a consistent race day package proved critical for the relatively new team.
“We’re totally rapt, we did extremely well by running three 7.0s in a row and be able to repeat that performance is pretty awesome in my eyes,” he said.
Burnett now has plans to pursue some more rounds in the championship.
“I think at this stage we will head to Adelaide after doing some more testing here to get it to where it is competitive and fast enough,” he said.
All results can be found HERE