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RAPISARDA AUTOSPORT INTERNATIONAL TAKES WIN AT NITRO UP NORTH IN DARWIN


Rapisarda Autosport International’s 2022 Australian season ended in a blaze of glory when Damien Harris won the final and set the low E.T of the meet at Hidden Valley Raceway, Darwin, June 17-18.

Teammate Wayne Newby finished fifth overall and claimed Top Speed honors @ 510 km/h.


The team raced in sub-tropic conditions with temperatures around 34C and humidity nearing 60 percent.


On day one, Harris began his campaign strongly and missed the coveted Top Qualifying spot by .01 sec, while Newby closed out the day in sixth place.

There was drama in the RAI camp on race morning when much-loved truck driver Mario Libreri was rushed to hospital with a kidney stone.


He returned later that day to a rock star reception from the team.

In Round One, Newby led all the way to upset Top qualifier Phil Read. At the same time, Harris shook, had a pedal, and held his nerve to easily accounted for rookie Shane Olive.


Round two and Newby lost to fellow Sydney racer Peter Xiberras after a dose of tyre shake around 100 feet. 'Newb's' kept his foot into it, then got the near-capacity crowd up on their feet after crossing the centerline.

The in-form Harris continued his winning ways after dismissing Read and booked his passage into the A- Final.


The Xiberras versus Harris trophy race produced the closest finish of the weekend.

Both left the start line hard, locked in unison, and sped to the end zone. Harris took the points with a 3.85 sec to Xiberras with a 3.88 sec to secure his second win of the season.


"That was a terrific race with Peter," said Harris. "We left side by side, but I didn't see him on the run. I think the crowd love to see close racing with lots of flames and that's what we delivered."

Newby closed out his 2022 season with a 3.88 when he ran away from Read in the C-Final.


SANTINO RAPISARDA

We are delighted to see Damien and Santo Junior take out the win. Massive congratulations to them and all their crew. We had a good run at the end of the meeting and can only wish that we had been able to produce that form earlier on the day. But that’s the way drag racing works out.


WAYNE NEWBY

We got it together on that last run. The crew was unbelievable all weekend. Conditions were harsh, and both teams should feel proud of their effort. I also want to thank Santo and the family for allowing me to race and be part of their family this season.


SANTO RAPISARDA JUNIOR

It was a shame that Dad was not here to see the team win. This is a great way to finish the season after missing out at the first meeting. The conditions were challenging for the crews on both teams. Damien has driven brilliantly this season and we saw again tonight how good he is. It’s


DAMIEN HARRIS

I think the crowd love to see close racing with lots of flames and that's what we delivered in the final. It's a great feeling to finish the year with a win. To see a Rapisarda car in the final and then take the win is an excellent achievement for Junior and his team.

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