Drag racer gets a timely boost in title chase

BALLARAT drag racer Matt Forbes has received a huge boost to his aspirations of winning back-to-back Australian Super Gas Championship titles.

The 40-year old has extended his sponsorship with American brand Lucas Oil Products and been fitted with a state-of-the-art racer for the remainder of the 2014 season.

Forbes was joined by Lucas Oil Products director of motorsports Tom Bogner on Friday to haul the covers off a stunning new 1957 Corvette Roadster that he intends race in the Australian championships in November, as well as the Super Gas finals series in December.

The car is powered by a 598 cubic inch (9.8-litre) Sunset Racecraft big block Chev that produces 1150 horsepower.

It can reach a top speed of almost 270 kilometres over the quarter-mile distance that Forbes races.

“It’s a world class car and it’s sort of a cut above everything else,” Forbes said.

“Lucas Oil have been a fantastic to me - I’m Ballarat born and bred, we’re (my family) very much a local story.

“To land a multi-national sponsor and for them to support us so strongly is a massive thing.”

The car was built by renowned American brand Don Davis Race Cars, and bought from champion US racer Tom Phillips, who won 14 National Hot Rod Association events with it and finished second in the prestigious Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series.

Forbes said Bogner’s presence made Friday’s unveiling more memorable.

“Tom’s confirmation of Lucas’ on-going commitment is sensational,” Forbes said.

“We couldn’t be happier with their support, they’re like family to us.”

Forbes aims to extend his advantage over his competitors in the last four rounds of the season.

He sits 60 points clear of second place in the Super Gas competition on 240 points.

With races in Mildura this September, Adelaide in October and Sydney (the Australian titles) in November, he is a certainty to enter the grand final at Calder Park on the season cap of 300 points.

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