ON THE 5TH DAY IT WAS A SEMI FOR BENNY
Team Bray arrived at the Fuchs Winternationals without the perfect preparation
but made the most of the what turned out to be Australia's first ever
5 day event. The father and son 9 times championship winning team had
received some new go fast parts for the event but the 3 day pre event
testing that was booked, got rained out.
The 1st day of qualifying closed with Ben in the field with a 6.068 / 245.14 and Victor on the outside looking in with a 6.102 / 225.03. Going into the 4th and final qualifying session Victor was on the bump with a 6.007 / 235.15 and Ben in 10th with 6.091 / 245.18. Unfortunately for Ben but fortunately for Victor, Ben was unable to make the field.
Drag racing is most definately one sport that you can say it is not over until it is over. Race day Monday got underway with some great times being put down by other brackets and just before Group 1 was about to get underway but the sky opened up and eliminations were postponed until Tuesday 9am. Two racers who had qualified in front of Ben could not make race day, which opened the door for Ben to get back into the Winternationals.
The field then had to be reseeded for round 1 which meant Victor moved to 7th to race off against Robin Judd and Ben moved to 8th to verse John Zappia.
It was Victor to wave the Bray flag 1st but was unable to improve on his qualifying time and was defeated by the retiring Robin Judd. It was then left up to Ben to maintain the family pride and that he did with a hole shot win over John Zappia 5.877 / 245.22 to 5.814/248.84.
Unfortunately, Ben's semi-final match up against a very consistent Andrew Sutton (who had been running 5.90's all week end) was the end of the day for Team Bray. Ben's clutch grabbed a little hard off the start line and his 6.070 / 233.60 was not good enough for Sutton's 5.984 / 220.19.
Victor Bray: "All in all I am happy with our week end out. I did have 2 personal goals for the event and that was of course run a 5 and I came so close to that in the 3rd qualifying session with a 6.007/235.15. So that one will have wait until another day. The other was to have one last burn with Robin Judd who after 14 years has decided to hang up the helmet and after to field reshuffle on Tuesday morning I was able to tick that one off as well.
We have got about 3 weeks at home now before we are off to Townsville as part of the on-track entertainment at the V8 Supercars round with our Burnout cars. Then follows a Slamfest round and Sidchrome store promotions then in August we have another Slamfest round in Gladstone. September is free at the moment but the 1st thing I am going to do when I get home will be map out a testing program so I do not think September will be free for long.
One last thing, I would just like to thank hard working Willowbank
raceway staff for getting the Winters to its completion and also congratulate
all the newly crowned Australian Champions".
Ben Bray: "If you had of asked me how was week end on Sunday night, you would have got a totally different answer to the one I am going to give you now. For what we are trying to achieve I had a very unhappy car all week end but with the amount of changes we made leading up to the Winters I had to accept that. In short I have a new blower, new block, new pipes, new fuel system, new gear box configuration and extra plugins for the on-board computer system etc., etc. If you change one thing on these cars it quite often has a major effect on them. So, to come out and run 3 x 6.0's a 5.80 and put the current National record holder on the trailer is a very positive sign for this combination on only 6 full passes of data.
The plan is to have about another 12 or so full pass of data on this
combination before the start of the next ANDRA season. The next big ¼
mile drag racing meeting for me is back here (Willowbank Raceway) in September,
the Jamboree and time permitting I might just roll out a surprise for