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Daniel Gregorini by Phil Luyer

The WA Summer Slam Series kicks off this Saturday at Perth Motorplex with a strong field of the quickest Top Doorslammers in the country ready to face off.

Few arrive in better shape than Daniel Gregorini, who has his 3500 horsepower Scratch & Match Motorsport Camaro in its best ever form. He recorded a personal best of 5.72 seconds in pre-season testing making him a serious threat for the championship.

Gregorini said changes to the rear end of the car during the off-season had proved their worth, with a much stronger differential in pace.

“We were limited last season on how many laps we could do versus how many sets of diff gears we could afford, we went through 14 gear sets!” he said. “Now we have the new TSP custom billet 10.5 inch diff in, which means we can ‘hot lap’ the car with no issues, and more laps equals more data.

“Even with our older generation Noonan cylinder heads, PSI supercharger and low compression engine I think we could run in the 5.65-5.68 area.”

Gregorini will need every part of that performance if he plans to come away with the winner’s trophy, and especially if he wants to beat arch rival John Zappia. There is no love lost right now between the two Top Doorslammer veterans and Gregorini is keen to take advantage of the fire the rivalry brings to each race.

“There’s no doubt he’s the best, but when John and I get to the start line its no secret it’s an all-in brawl, it’s game on,” he said. “Racing each other helps push us harder to the next level, because we both want to take the win light so badly. When we win, it’s the greatest feeling for myself and the team as he is the man to beat.”

As well as Zappia, Gregorini will be facing down Kelvin Lyle, Stuart and Ryan Moresby, Pino Priolo and Marty Dack. He believes the ‘green machine’ might have a small edge thanks to the amount of research and development the team has conducted.

“We have done a fair bit of testing so far this season, running some 5.72s and 5.73s on all different types of race track conditions, so I think that will give us some confidence going into the opening round,” he said. “If we can keep that up and maybe try to push a touch harder and get to the 5.6 zone then that might just be enough. But the field is certainly getting tough and it will be a great 2019/20 season at the Perth Motorplex.”

As well as the Summer Slam, this weekend’s event at Perth Motorplex also features round two of the WA Drag Racing Championships including Nitro Bikes, Top Comp, Outlaw Radial and more.

Qualifying begins from 11am, with the feature program commencing at 5.30pm.

- Photo by Phil Luyer.