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Judd sets new Doorslammer record
Posted: Thursday, November 20, 2008

Perth drag racer, Robin Judd, rewrote the Australian Top Doorslammer record books at last weekend’s 37th Goldenstates at Perth Motorplex, Kwinana Beach.

Already Australia’s quickest-ever Top Doorslammer drag racer, Judd became the first Australian Doorslammer racer to run into the 5.8sec zone and in doing so lowered his previous Australia’s quickest-ever 5.907sec time to 5.868sec.

Prior to the Motorplex event, Judd had recorded five-second passes at Queensland’s Willowbank Raceway, Ipswich (two) and at Western Sydney International Dragway (WSID) (also two), but he had not run the Top Doorslammer milestone at his home track (Perth Motorplex).

However, while testing on the Wednesday before last weekend’s 2008/09 Australian Top Doorslammer championship series second round event, Judd recorded a 5.929sec at 243.90mph (392.51kph) and a 5.941sec at 242.58mph (390.39kph).  

Buoyed with that test session, the Judd, William Buck/K & B Exclusive team were expecting to run five-second passes during qualifying, but could only manage a 6.071sec at 243.24mph best to finish in third place.

“While the track was average during the Wednesday test session, we (the team) were over the moon at running two five-second passes and establishing a base line for Friday’s qualifying sessions,” Judd said. 

“The plan was to first get comfortably in the field then go after a couple of quick times, however, the track conditions were different (to Wednesday) and we couldn’t get the car to hook-up.”

In Saturday’s first round elimination race, Judd stunned the large Motorplex crowd and fellow competitors when he reeled off the 5.868sec at 245.90mph (395.73kph), which was also his fastest-ever pass.

While Judd thought the pass was quick, he did not know just how quick until he pulled-up at the end of the braking area. 

“It was not until I came around the corner in the braking area and saw Ben Bray and his crew jumping up and down that I realised the run must have been really quick.

“When I pulled up, they told me it was a 5.8sec. I just couldn’t believe it. When my crew arrived to tow the car back to the pits, I felt a bit emotional as it started to sink in what we had just done.

“For qualifying, we made some changes, which we thought would be better for the conditions. It turned out the changes were a little bit too aggressive so for eliminations we went back to the Wednesday tune-up. We always knew we would eventually run a 5.8sec, but not on that run.”

In his second round (semi final) elimination, Judd ran a 5.914sec at 243.90mph, which backed-up the 5.8sec to reset his previous Top Doorslammer Elapsed Time (ET) 5.907sec record.      

However, Judd missed lane choice in the final when Zappia ran a 5.900sec pass in his semi final.

In the final, Zappia chose the left lane, on which he had run five of his six five-second passes for the event and Judd had run his two five-second passes. Judd (6.143/241.28) lost to Zappia (5.882/243.24).

“We were trying to win the race and knew we had to run fast. Both Zap and I knew the left lane was superior to the right lane during eliminations, so it was devastating to lose lane choice.

“At the launch I got the jump on Zap by six hundredths (of a second), but predictably the car lost traction at about 100 feet out and drove into tyre shake. As soon as I had to pedal I knew the race was gone. With the advantage I had off the start line, I would have had to have run a low 5.9sec to win the race, which was always going to be tough in the right lane.”

While disappointed at losing the final, Judd was happy to leave the event on top of the all-time quick list and retain his ET record.

“I was not surprised Zap ran a 5.8sec in the final. All his passes were in the five-second zone. It was inevitable that he would run a 5.8sec; I am thrilled we got there first and retained the ET record.  

Judd is now second in the championship race behind Zappia (150pts) with 135 points and has his sight fixed firmly on winning the championship series in his William Buck/K & B Exclusive ’59 Studebaker.

“We have the quickest car in the country, but will be concentrating on consistency. The (engine) tune-up is not that aggressive, so we think there may be a 5.70sec in the car, if we hop it up a bit, but winning the championship is what counts not records. We are only 15 points behind Zap, so it’s game on,” Judd said. 






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