Australia’s Sean Mifsud is attempting to do something that has not been accomplished in quite a long while. He wants to prove the naysayers wrong by first qualifying for and then attempting to go several rounds in the ultra-competitive Australian Top Doorslammer class. That’s not so unusual unless you take into consideration that he wants to do it with an Alan Johnson wedge-headed Oldsmobile combination topped with a roots blower.
And to make the chore that much more difficult, he’s attempting to do it with a 1941 Willys, an ex-Pro Mod car imported from the States for just this objective.
Mifsud attempted to fulfill his dream at the recently completed AC Delco East Coast Nationals at Western Sydney International Dragway. The team fought previously unknown clutch problems all day Friday. The presence of these problems was brought to light by the new JanCen Motorsports (of two-time Mike Janis IHRA Pro Mod Champion fame) fuel system and blower updates.
After discovering that a bent pressure plate was the culprit, Mifsud procured one from his friend Steve Dupond and readied the car for Saturday’s Pro Comp eliminator program.
This Pro Comp bracket was the brainchild of WSID’s own Jim Read. The category was created to give those racers who didn’t qualify for the eight-car Top Doorslammer and Top Alcohol fields a place to strut their stuff in front of the crowd for their sponsors. It was designed to be run on a Pro Tree handicap start based on National Records in a Chicago-style shootout.
This field was filled with such T/D notable drivers and cars as Robin Judd’s Moonshine Bandit Studebaker, Kath Stevens in her Jack Daniels Falcon, Steve Packman with the just-awarded best-engineered car, Maurice Fabietti’s Monaro and Sean’s Willys. Sean came out of the first round with low E.T. for the Top Doorslammer cars, just ahead of Judd.
Back in the pits the troubleshooting continued, and the able crew finally found a fuel system issue that had plagued them for two days.
After consulting with his American friend Camp Stanley, whom Mifsud had brought out to help with the set-up, he opted for a conservative approach for the final. Mifsud and Stanley agreed that it was better to gather some useful data to assist in the tuning of the car in the future instead of going for broke.
Just before midnight both cars rolled through the burnout box and prepared to duke it out. After massive burnouts, the race was on. The ecstatic reaction of Mifsud’s crew on the starting line told the tale, as his win light came on and the scoreboard display lit up to show a winning mark of 6.605 over Judd’s 6.600.
This bracket win rejuvenated Mifsud and his entire crew. They now know that they can play against some of the best the world has to offer “Down Under” and be competitive. With the weight break afforded his combination, and the expert tuning advice of Camp Stanley, Mifsud’s “Wild Willy” could very easily become a new force to be reckoned with in Australian Top Doorslammer racing.
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