Pikes Peak 2016 Time Attack 2 Class EVO 8 driven by Australian rally driver Jeff Denmeade of Meadsports with prep and crew support by Road Race Engineering. Tuning by David Hinde of Merlin Tuning.
Jeff’s recap of race day:
After seeing that we had a small chance to take the number 2 Viper, we knew 4th place was ours to loose, a finish was more important than a fantasy. The mountain was yet to play all it’s cards, it had 10 hours left to teach some lessons.
With an amazing amount of red flags that left us bewildered, with a huge amount of cars being turned around and sent back down the hill for restarts the day dragged on.
Finally the gates opened for us and we were let into the start zone area, safety checked, and given the clear order, we were now under starter orders. Revs raised, launch control enabled. Great start! The best all weekend. A good start, even on a rally usually, seemingly, sets the atmosphere for the mood for the run.
Concentrating on accuracy first for the lower section, quickly in 4th gear hitting all the high speed apexes, all in 4th gear. This sets the mind up for the run, accuracy first, speed second.
In all the run was effortless, even faultless, but at some point it felt like the car simply ran out of air, not pulling as strong as it did in practice, no real time to fight it, just had to keep getting it to the apexes. Suddenly cars were stopped all over the course, hoods up and steam coming out, in large places there was little grip on the pavement due to heat, brake zones were harder to read with over run forcing diving into the apexes.
Data later showed that the car ran out of air, due to a zone on the mountain where there was simply no humidity to cool the air going into the airbox, or radiator. The car became a barometer meter itself. The car spiked from 97 degrees Celsius, to a whopping 113 in this odd ‘dead-zone’. But the old dog hung in there.
Running the same specification we ran in 2010 when we won the Time attack class, even the same turbo, the old EVO proved it can run reliably, with simple ecu updates and reflashes running constant all week.
Typical of Pikes, we were entertained with a ice storm, then a hail storm at the top, leaving all of us to tip toe down a few miles on the ice with race rubber, when we were rounded up let loose to come down under a safety car. How we all made it down without someone sliding off is beyond me.
Only one car didn’t make up due to the storm, when the Ecoboost Mustang simply couldn’t go up the hills on the ice, at some point sliding backwards down the road, deciding to park it for safety sake.
End result, 4th, which was expected, and achieved, and not wasted. We drive the car up into the trailer on it’s own power, lock it down, and have a post race drink in the spa.
In reflection, it was an amazing year, and the team was simply the best to have around me. Mike and Matt and Bryce from Road Race Engineering in California, and our tuner David Hinde (aka Merlin) from Sydney kept the car at it’s peak, and were always ahead of the curve on anything that may have happened. We’ll be back.
Cheers to all.
Final results for Time Attack 2 Production were:
1st Place Nick Robinson 2017 Acura NSX Hybrid – 10:28
2nd Place Kevin Wesley 2016 Viper ACR – 10:39
3rd Place Stephanie Reaves 2016 Viper ACR – 10:56
4th Place JEff Denmeade 2003 EVO 8 – 11:32
5th Place Fumio Nutahara 2015 GT86 12:36
DNF Kash Singh 2016 Ford Mustang
Friday is the last of 4 days of practice on the mountain. For us, this was the middle section. This starts at Glen Cove just past the ski area and goes up past the tree line and through the “W”s and stops at Devils Playground. All the go up a couple minutes apart. Once all the cars go up, they clear the road and send everyone back down. The cars do any prep or changes and go back up again. We hope to get 4 or sometimes 5 runs on a short section like this. The drivers don’t get to connect the entire course until race day.
The car had been running fine all week. We were looking to see how the additional ducting that we had made the day before had changed. In the practice sessions we run from daybreak until 9 am. The weather is very cool. But come race day our start time wont be until about noon. And instead of running a short 4-5 mile section, we’ll be running the entire 15 mile course flat out. We wanted to compare coolant temps here with the higher to[ section that we ran earlier in the week.
We were also able to track the tire pressure at the altitude went higher to best set a start pressure. The run group that we are in has some wild cars. A good Pikes Peak car always looks like it was drawn by an 8 year old. Because of the thin air up this high, the aero is always exaggerated. You end up seeing crazy open wheel cars with giant double wings in the front and rear. Tunnels and diffusers, canards out a foot in each direction. We see the open class electric cars of Rhys Millen and “Monster” Tajima, stock cars, Mike Ryan’s Freightliner semi-truck, every concept of an open wheel car you can imagine…
Here is a video of the middle section practice run. One run, three different camera angles back to back.
As day two arrived, it was a 2:45 am wake up call to get ready to head up the mountain. It takes about a half hour to get through the gate and to the pits. Then set up, get the car and driver warmed up and be ready for the session to start as soon as it is light enough to drive without headlights. We have the Pikes Peak Highway available for practice and qualifying runs until 9 am each day. The competitors are divided into two groups of cars and one group of motorcycles and quads. Each group runs a different section of the 15 mile 152 turn course. The start line is at 9,000 feet with the finish just above 14,000 feet. The air is thin at the top!
It often works out that you get only 2 or 3 runs on the longer bottom section. On the two upper sections you can get as many as 5 runs if everyone behaves. Today will be our day for qualifying on the bottom section. It was the other race car group’s qualifying yesterday and will be the motorcycles for qualifying tomorrow. Early on there were some offs and mechanical break downs with the other competitors and it became clear that we would only get 2 runs. We chose to concentrate on data logging for boost and to monitor temperatures.
Our MeadeSports/Road Race EVO 8, which was taken back to stock configuration for this year’s event put in a good effort to qualify just 1.6 seconds behind the Electric Class Tesla running in Ludicrous Mode. We had been running 3rd in our class all week during practice. Running a bit behind the 2017 Hybrid Acura NSX and the faster of the two 2016 Viper ACRs. The second 650 hp Viper ACR finally found its mountain footing this morning and we were bumped. Our qualifying time of 4:48 put us 4th in class.
In all, the team was satisfied with the running and as the times got quicker. Jeff was actually faster than he had run in qualifying in 2012 in the Australian built carbon fiber Skelta sports car.
“We take these qualifying times as an indication, but race day is so very different than practice and qualifying as we run in the heat of the day on race day, whereas qualifying is done in the cooler early morning. We have half the power of the top 3 cars now ahead of us, but the mountain saves its joker cards until race day” Jeff said. “We’re getting closer to the business end of the week of work, I’m exhausted, but excited”, Jeff went onto say.
Tuesday the MeadeSports Road/Race Engineering team took use of the optional practice day to run on the bottom section to start data gathering and sighting the twisty tarmac that is this section of the spectacular Pikes Peak road. This day isn’t a mandatory day; mandatory practice starts Wednesday the 22nd.
What is the best 3 port boost control solenoid for the Mitsubishi EVO? We like this one :-)
It comes complete with silicone hose and zip ties for mounting and securing hoses. The RRE 3 Port Boost Control Solenoid includes a direct plug in connector to fit the EVO 8/9/X
We use these about 8 times a week on all of the cars that we tune in house here at RRE. We find that it is more responsive and smother than the more expensive ones. Solenoids will make some noise when they are clicking so we typically will zip tie the BCS to a hose or wire loom to isolate the possible sound. These can be used with the 3rd port venting or with the air going back in. We typically vent it to keep things simple. Fittings are included to run the BCS either way. Many aftermarket intakes have janky fittings and tiny nipples that are not well secureds for the vent air to blow back in to the intake. The less you push and pull on those little fittings the better.
Matt is getting ready for the last events of this year here in So Cal. He just went through a full rebuild (2.3 motor, trans) and is putting the final touches on his setup. More info on Matt and his car here: TimeattackUSA
Video and Editing by Drew @ Thirstyfilm
First Drives: Shaking down my RRE built EVO VIII at Streets of Willow for the first round of the AWD Challenge
words by James Singer
stills by CaliPhotograpy
In previous blog entries, I have said that I am a pretty normal guy that is trying to track his car without going broke while maximizing fun. I started writing about my experiences while running NASA’s HPDE series from HPDE1 to 3. After that, I started trying out some time attack competitions with Extreme Speed in their AWD Challenge. Since starting out, I have had some ups and downs. I have gotten a lot of support and even some hook ups but I have also shattered a piston due to my own stupidity. However, I did not give up and this is the next chapter with a new set up for 2013!!
We last left off on this roll cage build with finishing all the welding. Now it is time for the cleanup, prep and paint.
All unnecessary seam sealer and sound deadening gets removed to lighten things as possible. We trimmed off any brackets and tabs. Most small holes get covered and smoothed over with metal tape for a cleaner look.
All the bare steel on the roll cage and welds needed to be cleaned and prepped with a light acid wash.
Everything gets masked off nicely. The floor gets cleaned and roughed up with sandpaper and a Scotchbrite. Blow all the (more…)
Here are the next round of pics building Ben’s full roll cage. The last article had the car getting stripped and interior cleaned. The main hoop and basic bars getting bent and tacked into place.
We had dropped the roll cage down off the foot plates to be able to weld all around the tubes up in the roof area. With the upper bars now welded all the way around, the roll cage goes back up on the floor plates and the floor plates get welded in place.
The b-pillars are closed back in now that they have been lightened.
The door bars are taking shape. The driver’s side has the bars extending deep into the door “NASCAR Style”
The passenger side is a lighter more simple “X” design (more…)
With all the 600 whp mods Ben has lately, he felt it was time to step up the safety from a bolt-in Autopower 4 point roll bar to a full cage. Here is the transformation:
The first step was to gut the interior. Everything that could be unbolted was unbolted. The dash comes out, carpet, seats, door panels, headliner, wiring and more.
Bryce was enlisted to help. Anything with a Phillips head screw was his responsibility.
Next is to clean and strip any caulking and paint or undercoating where the base plates will get welded into the chassis. We used 1.75″ diameter .120 wall (more…)
Part I is here.
Text by James Singer
Photos by Mike W
[it isn’t the camera, it is rosacea]
I am a pretty average guy as far as driving cars on the track goes. I am also a pretty average guy in the sense that this economy has taken its toll on my ability to indulge in track days. As a result, I prep my car painstakingly before going to the track to avoid breaks and other disasters. This month, before going to the track I changed out my blown (more…)
By James Singer
I have been buried for a few months but just before things went nuts with work and life, I got a chance to update my stealthy street/track EVO VIII. My goal with this car is to have a car that does not get too much attention from unwanted parties and is streetable with a tad of blingage but can still be more than fun to drive to the track, drive on the track and drive home from the track.
OEM IX front bumper with SE lip and Ganador Super Mirrors.
The full feature of the car isn’t on line, you gotta get yourself to the store and buy the November issue of DSPort when it hits the newstand! In the meantime, the RRE RalliArt is in the current October Issue. This is the EVO we tuned with the new Borg Warner turbo with the crazy spoolup.
This is a pretty sweet IX we recently did. Really nice powerband for not too much money spent and incredibly stock appearing under the hood.
Results from 91 octane and E-85
List of mods:
Cosworth Drop in filter
ETS 3.5″ FMIC
Our Shop EVO 8 is running again after a time out for bad behavior. Fresh 2.3 stroker motor ready to make some noise. Monday we have some housekeeping under the hood. Then some break in miles on the dyno and a retune during the week next week.
Got the motor in the hole!
We are no longer offering this service. Centric changed to a different powdercoating company a while ago and the current finish is not the same as shown in these pics below. Sorry for the older teaser pics.
Current powdercoating process looks more like this:
Centric can still do the rebuild on a Brembo EVO caliper and get the rebuild part mechanically perfect. But the powdercoating is more what you can expect for a race car. The caliper will be red. It may have random dirt specs in the finish, it will have orange peal. But it will be stuck down and a high temperature red. Same price as listed below. Sorry but it just is what it is they say.
Old pics and original post below.
Are your calipers maroon, brown or even black from having too much fun with them? Is the clear coat flaking? Pink from the sun and wheel cleaning chemicals?
For EVO Brembo caliper painting and rebuilding we use Centric (parent company of Stoptech and Powerslot). Front calipers are $375 for a pair for the service, rears are $260 for the pair. This is for a complete rebuild and powdercoat of the calipers. Basically they are re-manufactured to like new condition. It takes about 5-6 working days to do your calipers so plan on some downtime with your car.
Here are a set of front and rear calipers that just came back:
Box and package: (old process, not a current pic)
What you get: (old process, not a current pic)
Front: (old process, not a current pic)
Click for more pics!
I cant say that I have ever seen this kind of spoolup with this kind of top end potential. This is a track car with a Buschur Racing 2.3 liter @ 10:1 compression. The turbo is the new Borg Warner on a Full Race manifold with dual Tial wastegates. AEM EMS and E-85 on 1600cc RC Engineering injectors tuned by Scot Gray here.
Running the car at different boost levels. Robert Fuller (RobiSpec) does the track prep and coaching on this EVO 8 and was was looking for something in the 500 whp range to keep the car somewhat driveable on a road course for his customer. Scot could not get the car to run below 18 psi so 524 is the lowest hp there can be.
At the last Redlint Time Attack we finally killed one of the first 2.4 EVO motors in the US. This was the third 2.4 EVO motor we built back in 2004 for our shop EVO 8. I dont like the smaller available sealing surface available on a 2.4 block that has been bored .020″ oversized, the head gasket (along with the assistance of 520 ft lbs of torque) is what finally let go on the motor.
So we reused the Mitsubishi 2.4 crank and took the opportunity of it being all apart to switch back to a 2.0 block for a 2.3 stroker motor. Wiseco pistons, Manley rods, new bearings and a general freshen up. We’ll be hanging the motor in the car this week.
Ed is a good guy. I have gotten to spend some time with him over the last few months for NASA. He is the perfect garage mate. He doesn’t talk to you too much and takes care of business. He also has the coolest dad ever. The last time I ran NASA was in June. Ed wasn’t driving but he came out anyways and did a ride along in my EVO. Then, he drove my EVO, which scared the crap out of me. There is nothing like having a real race car driver drive your daily driver around the track in anger to freak you out and show you how slow you are. I thought I was kicking some imaginary ass in HPDE but ED is really the one killing it!! I can’t wait to have more good times with Ed out on the track this year in NASA. You should come out too!! [nasaproracing.com]
More on ED Nazarian after the break
by MATT “O-Town” DENNISON
I got a special invite to attend the Global Time Attack at Willow Springs. it is essentially all the fastest cars in the west who could care less for Redline Time Attack. Records were destroyed to back the fact that GTA has the fastest time attack cars running in their series.
I on the other hand didn’t set any records but made my driving experience more exciting and slower by customizing my front bumper in a off road excursion in the 1st session… meh
I did finish the day running a 1.33.7 with no front aero, good enough for 2nd place…
Heres a write up from UrbanRacer.com
If you didn’t know they added a new section to the track that has a 10 percent grade… sickness
Thanks to all my sponsors Mike@RRE, Road Race Engineering, Robert “Robi” Fuller, ACT, Odyssey Batteries, GT Spec, SPY+optics, BERK Technologies
We were racing at BRP about a week ago, April 9-10, on configuration #13CW. About a month before that we completed both of our races at ACS Roval during our 2011 season opener event. You can read about our season opener here:
By Ed Nazarian – RRE Team Driver
The 2010 NASA National Championship is right around the corner, September 14-19, at MMP in Utah. Last year was the first year that Nationals was held at MMP. Cool thing was that I was the first to be racing an Evo at MMP for NASA’s National Championship. This year I won’t be the only one racing an Evo at Nationals. Earlier this year a Socal Honda Challenge racer started racing his Evo with us. Last time I saw he is registered to race in H2 with his Integra, and ST2 with his Evo. Hopefully both of us do well and return without any issues.
After this year, Nationals is going back to Mid-O for 2 years, 2011-2012. It will return to MMP for 2 years starting in 2013. So it’s sort of my last year at Nationals because, given how things are, I don’t foresee being able to do the 5,000 mile round trip drive to Mid-O and back.
As of today there are 21 racecars entered in ST2 for Nationals. That is the biggest field of racecars for a higher class series. There might be a few more come Nationals, but you never know who’s going to make it until it happens.
Looking at the names that have registered for ST2, the competition is looking really fierce. The racecars are pretty diverse, and it’s been changing, so we’ll have to wait and see. So far there are a bunch of Corvettes, a few of the Mazda GT’s, 2 Porsches, Mazda RX8, Honda Civic, Nissan 240SX, E46 M3, Roush Mustang, my friend Scott Howard in his 1st gen RX7, and so forth. I know most of my competition, and since the National Championship race is 45min, I’ll need all the luck I can get.
In the meantime I want to note something we’ve modified on my car…some aero and better brake ducting. It’s the first time that I’m modifying my aero, so bear with me. I contacted APR, and they set me up with a splitter. And to help me minimize my expenses for Nationals, my friends stepped up to the plate and gave me their APR wings! Sean Bradley gave me his GTC-200 wing off of his STi, and Scott Pennock gave me his GTC-300 wing off of his Evo. Then, Mike Welch (owner of RRE), fabricated and installed pretty much everything. Mike, on his own time, bought all the parts we needed to put it all together. Then over the course of about 3 weeks, I went to RRE where Mike did his thing. Mike is awesome!
As for the brake ducting, it’s something I’ve been planning on amending ever since I bought a used AMS kit. I wasn’t happy with the AMS kit because it didn’t seem beneficial/efficient for my needs. So I took some basic concepts and incorporated them into my setup. Only thing I can say now is that it came out better than I had anticipated. It’s really cool when something you visualize finally comes together.
I also want to thank Robert Ramirez, a.k.a. Honda Robert, from RRE. I ran into some challenges one night at RRE while prepping and I needed help. Honda was planning on working on his car but he sacrificed his time to help me out. Then, 2 days later I did a shakedown test day on Sunday, August 15, at ACS with Speed Ventures. Everything seemed normal, but my day ended short. During the 2nd session the coupler of my lower IC pipe popped off. I crawled into the pits and had them tow me to my spot. In order to get to that coupler I would have had to remove the splitter. Since it takes a while to remove/reinstall the splitter, I called it a day. After the test day we’ve gradually been continuing with our prep work. Now we just need to tweak on a few more things, wrap things up, and cross our fingers for Nationals.
Btw, if you’re the type that likes road trips and you’re interested in seeing Nationals, don’t hesitate to come out and spectate. Here is my schedule for Nationals. I’ve excluded my Warmup and Qualifying sessions, so this is just a schedule of my races:
– Thurs, Sep 16: 1st Race
– Fri, Sep 17: 2nd Race
– Sun, Sep 19: National Championship Race (45 min)
In the meantime I want to thank my sponsors and friends:
– RRE: Mike Welch and the entire RRE crew. Too many things to note. RRE is basically my racecars home away from home. One thing I will note again is the APR splitter and wing that I added in preparation for Nationals. Mike pretty much did all the fabrication work. And he did it on his own time, even on weekends. Mike is so easy to work with. I truly enjoy working by his side and learning from him. He is such a genuinely good guy.
– Robispec: Robert Fuller, aka Robi, and his crew for providing me trackside suspension tuning at my races.
– Girodisc: Martin Meade for providing me phenomenal 2pc rotors, Raybestos brake pads, and awesome customer service.
– South Coast Mitsubishi: For their continued support. I can’t imagine there being a better car dealership out there.
– APR: For the splitter and for all their help. KC was the rep that dealt with me, so a special thanks to KC for being so helpful and swift with everything.
– Friends: Sean Bradley, and Scott Pennock. To help me minimize my expenses for Nationals, Sean gave me his GTC-200 wing off of his STi, and Scott gave me his GTC-300 wing off of his Evo. Thanks also to Matt Dennison for letting me borrow his Tactrix cable.
– All my other friends and everyone else for their support.