Jim Read Racing are heading to Willowbank Raceway’s New Year’s Thunder

pic: John Baremans

Usually the start of a New Year leads to changes, resolutions, optimism, and bold predictions. However, for Jim Read Racing, they are looking on picking up from their last outing in Sydney and moving forward at this weekend’s New Year’s Thunder at Willowbank Raceway.

“I’ve been around this sport long enough to know it’s best to let your race car do all the talking. I’d love to predict we are going to win this weekend, “grinned team principle Bruce Read, but I won’t. Top Fuel and nitro are never predictable when it comes to 10,000 horsepower and 1000 feet of racetrack.”

The New Years Thunder event is on this Saturday, January 5th and will feature one of the toughest Top Fuel fields assembled in Australia.

The combination of a three-car Rapisarda International Autosport assault, along with two cars from Lamattina Racing, will see Jim Read Racing in a Top Fuel battle royale.

“Yes we are up against some of the toughest racers on the planet,” said Read. But anything can happen and with my American mate Jim Oberhofer joining us again, and my brother Phil behind the wheel, I feel confident that we will be right up there with them.”

Whilst the on-track results haven’t produced any round wins for the Sydney-based team, Read was happy with the car’s performance at last November’s East Coast Thunder event at Sydney Dragway

“On that weekend we overpowered the first run, underpowered the second run, and then got beat in the first round. The early numbers were good and I’m confident we will get it right sooner or later. We have got the first 330 feet right, but unfortunately, we still have 660 feet to go.

“We slowed the car down a bit off the launch, which meant it was less aggressive on the step. Our best 60ft number was .841, which was a massive slowdown from our previous .808 best. We will get it back down to the .820s, but we need to take a few baby steps first. I mean to go .841 and 2.16 to the 330ft on a 140-degree racetrack pretty good,” said Read.

“Having Jim O back means we can continue on with our program. And the best news is that he will be staying on for the Santo’s Summer Thunder in a few weeks time.

“Jim speaks in another language when he’s in the computer room. He takes things to the next level. When you are sitting beside a guy who sits in front of his computer five-days a week, for 24 events a year plus testing, he picks up on stuff I don’t.

“Right now Jim has been staying at my place and we are enjoying the summer weather. But as much as I have tried, it’s a struggle explaining to him the game of cricket,” laughed Read. Taking nitro and Top Fuel is soooooo much easier.

“In the meantime, it’s going to be great to be back at Willowbank. It’s a completely different racetrack than Sydney, and Jimbo will marvel at the traction that Willowbank provides.

“The forecast is looking good and we are confident of performing well,” finished Read

Please drop into our pit area and say hello. Jim will be bringing over some of his books and would be only too happy to sign autographs, as would driver Phil Read.

Jim Read Racing is proudly sponsored and supported – McDonalds, North Vic Engines, Valvoline, Oddessy Batteries, Premiair Hire, Pacific Pools, PMP Motorsport Products, DHL and Kalitta Motorsports.

New Years Thunder Top Fuel Schedule

2:09 – Test Session
5:30 – Rd 1
7:45 – Rd 2
10:05 – Rd 3
* note times subject to change

For further info on the event head to https://www.willowbankraceway.com.au/

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