Highlights from the first ever Holden-Powered Nationals, held at Heathcote Park Raceway last weekend

Photographers: Chris Thorogood

HOLDEN fans congregated at Heathcote Park last weekend to celebrate their favourite Australian-made engines. It didn’t matter if you were into fours, sixes or eights, there was a bit of everything at the track and the organisers couldn’t have asked for a better day, weather wise.

Friday night saw a few entrants testing their combos, but the slippery surface stopped most from running anywhere near their best times. However, when Saturday rolled around there was plenty of traction for all and the fastest rides were deep into the eight-second zone. In fact Andrew Darby’s VK wagon stormed through the traps for an 8.05@179mph with its massive GT55 single-turbo 355ci Holden V8, while Tony Webb was a little further back into the mid-eight-second-zone with his chocolate brown Torana.

At the other end of the scale there was Chris Degering’s Starfire four-powered Vauxhall and Kim Ryan’s 202-powered Kingswood – both which were in the mid-20 second zone. In between there were an amazing array of turbo and supercharged sixes, and Holden V8’s of various capacities. The classes were split up into Naturally Aspirated Holden and Blown Holden, along with an Outlaw Class for those who were driving LS and Chev-powered vehicles. All brackets were run in a Chicago Shootout Dial-Your-Own format that made sure everyone got plenty of runs. The top four point scorers from each class when into elimination finals.

In the Naturally Aspirated class Matt Kernke and his immaculate silver Monaro defeated Andrew Dyson and his black work truck One Tonner – both were running low elevens all day. In the Blown class there may have been fewer entrants, but what they lacked in numbers they more than made up for in speed. In the end though, it would be Owen Mitchell’s VL Commodore taking the win against a red-lighting Tony Webb in the LJ Torana. The Outlaw Class saw Cameron Jones’s HT Holden scoring the win against Ben Treifall’s UC Torana sedan.

The quickest naturally aspirated trophy went to Jason Bjorksten’s LC Torana – he ran 9.1@150mph, while Andrew Darby and his VK wagon were quickest Blown and overall with an 8.05@179mph. Look for a full wrap up in the July issue of Street Machine.

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -5711Blake Evans put the finishing touches on his LC GTR just before the Nationals and ran mid-10s

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -5870Dom Dagostino was running high nines with his 383ci LX hatch

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -5881Matt Kernke took home the Naturally Aspirated winner’s trophy in his 11-sec Monaro

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -5903All the way down from Townsville Rob Valastro was running high-nines in his 356ci VL Commodore

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -5965The weather was awesome all day at Heathcote Raceway

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Torana -6037Tony Webb travelled down from Queensland with the family and ran strongly with his turbo Torana

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Turtle -6060Chris Degering’s Turtle Vauxhall lived up to its name with a blown head gasket and 20-second runs

Holden -Powered -Nationals -VK-Commodore -6245Andy Chew’s twin-turbo VK drew a decent crowd but made no passes on the day

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Premier -6254Would you believe that this rusty HQ Premier was running low-elevens all weekend?

Holden -Powered -Nationals -HQ-6295Kim Ryan’s HQ Kingswood ran consistent 20-second passes with a stock 202 and 4-speed

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Drag -6363Aaron Featherstone’s turbo Torana takes on Michael Marks’s stealthy turbo VS SS Commodore

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Drag -6418Steve McGregor’s HZ is unbelievably tidy and runs mid-10s with a stout 383ci Holden

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Drag -6462Andrew Darby was quickest of the day with his turbo VK Commodore wagon – 8.05 at 179mph

Holden -Powered -Nationals -Drag -6486Cameron Jones won the Outlaw class with his 403ci LS-powered HT Holden