The national motorsport spotlight turns on “Crocodile Country” this weekend as the Australian Drag Racing Series Top Alcohol Championship heads to Darwin’s Hidden Valley Dragway for the first time.
Teams from all corners of the country will converge on the freshly renovated race venue with the hope of being the first to secure their name in the history books with a win, and four time West Australian Champion Rob Pilkington is keen to get his croc-hunting face on and prove that the his Alutech Funny Car can win outside his home state.
“We’ve won national rounds twice, but on our home soil at the Motorplex, and after the non-result from the Winternationals rain-out in Queensland on our two visits there, the opportunity to travel to the top-end and throw the dice at Hidden Valley with the rest of the teams was too good to ignore.”
Pilkington labelled the Darwin round a “qualifying nail-biter,” predicting that even the heavy hitting championship contenders could get caught out with practically no ontrack experience for the majority of the contenders.
“There’s an opportunity in Darwin to be on a relatively level playing field with only two of the racers having local track knowledge in Mark Probst and Scott MacLean. So those guys will be watched very closely, but apart from that, I think only Gary Phillips has raced there before and won in his Doorslammer. It’s going to be very interesting to see how everyone goes about testing the limits of the racing surface, while still being conservative enough to get down the track and make the field.”
The Oakford based racer also threw air moisture into the equation as another variable that could split the field.
“Everyone says that Darwin has a very definitive dry season during winter and it turns very humid during the wet summer, so hopefully this weekend will serve up some air that’s mostly like Perth’s dry season. Either way, we’re confident that we can match it with the other teams regardless of the challenges, because these rounds are won just as much by the support of your racing partners as it is on the racetrack, and we’re very keen to win Alutech, CTS Low loaders and all of our supporters the attention they deserve outside of Perth, and this is our best opportunity to do it. Infact, Jason from CTS has gone way beyond our agreement to get us to Darwin this weekend and that means so much.”
Qualifying for the history making two day event begins just after 6pm on Friday night with eliminations set to sort the men from the boys on the Saturday from 5.55pm.
For more information head to www.hiddenvalleydrags.com