Archive for the ‘Racing’ Category

Check this great video from SubieFest featuring our very own spokes model Michelle in the first seconds!

Click HERE to view the video!

Redline Time Attack was extremely exciting at Infineon this weekend as the rain was a major factor in lap times but that didn’t damper any attempts in making the fastest lap times! Check out the event recap:

Redline Time Attack Sonoma Event Re-Cap
As the 2010 Redline Time Attack season winds down, our second to last event is now in the books. The event was held at the famous Infineon Raceway (formerly Sears Point) in the heart of wine country, Sonoma, CA. While the normal talk in the region is about Cabernet, Merlot, and fine dining, the hot topic around the Infineon Raceway paddock was rain. Yes, there was rain, and lots of it. It rained virtually non-stop this weekend and teams were struggling to learn how to go fast in it.
Rain does very funny things to race results. Front wheel drive becomes fast, all-wheel drive becomes even faster, and rear wheel drive guys are left chasing their tails, literally.   Huge power becomes a disadvantage, and so do skinnier tires and softer suspension. Teams either learn to adapt or find themselves at the back of the pack and this event was no different. Teams dealt with heavy rain through the first part of the competition day but a break in the rain made the track gradually faster as competitors got into their second and final time attacks.
There was a lot of anticipation coming into this event, but something many of us have been anticipating all year long finally came to fruition today and answered the question that has been floating around since the season opener in March; who is the G-Stig? Yes ladies and gentlemen, the mysterious dark visored driver of the GST Motorsports Subaru Impreza finally revealed himself at the awards ceremony and the G-Stig is none other than Jeff Westphal.
Westphal, the 2008 Pacific F2000 Champion,  has raced everything from the Jim Russell Formula Series to GrandAm ROLEX GT and now he can publicly add Redline Time Attack Champion to that resume as well.
Westphal and GST Motorsports were one of the favorites in the Super Modified class coming into the race as Infineon is their home track, however they had one big hurtle to clear in the form of the ACS SPEED World Challenge Ford Mustang driven by Brandon Davis.   The ACS team reportedly removed 300 lbs. from their race car as well as removing the restrictor plate that SPEED World Challenge mandates to make over 750whp. Many thought that the SPEED World Challenge car would dominate the entire field, however Westphal had something to say about it, and he said it loud and clear.
Westphal piloted the GST Motorsports Impreza L to a blistering 1:56.952 on a soaking wet track, a full 20 seconds faster than anyone else taking the overall event win, overall Super Modified class win, and the Super Modified AWD class win. Brandon Davis in the ACS SPEED World Challenge Mustang did land himself on the top of the Super Modified RWD podium however with the second fastest time of the day at a 2:16.555. Andrie Hartanto took 2nd in Super Modified RWD in the N1 Concepts Honda S2000 with a 2:39.764. Jason Saini ran un-opposed in the Super Modified FWD class in the Tri-Point Engineering Mazdaspeed3 with a 2:34.785.
The Modified Class was yet again stacked with regulars from COBB Tuning, AFI Turbo, AE Performance, and local boys LIC Motorsports. Brian Lock struggled all weekend in the rain with the heavy COBB Tuning R35 GTR but pulled it together when it counted to take the overall Modified and Modified AWD class wins with a 2:16.827. WORKS Motorsports used to race in the Redline Time Attack series back in 2006 and they returned at this event with a number of cars including the Mitsubishi Evo X that Lars Wolfe piloted to a 2:19.338 for 2nd place in the Modified AWD class. James Elterman in the Takata Time Attack / LIC Motorsports Subaru STI rounded out the Modified AWD podium in 3rd with a 2:34.092.
Carl Rydquist in the AE Performance/City Tire/Hankook Nissan 350Z has been a dominant force this year in the Modified RWD class, but he was de-throned at this event by Jeremy Renshaw in the AFI Turbo Honda S2000 who came back from a blown motor at the last round to take the Modified RWD class win with a 2:22.887. Rydquist came in 2nd with a 2:23.881, while Nicholas Cahill in came in 3rd with a 2:28.350 in his Mazda Miata. Ghram and Liam Downey battled back and forth all weekend long in nearly identical Red Stone Honda Civics for the top spot on the Modified FWD podium, but at the end of the day it was Graham who would take top honors with a 2:35.734 over Liam who took 2nd with a 2:37.130.
The Street Tire Class showed fairly low attendance from what we are accustomed too on the West Coast, but that didn’t stop the action. All weekend long Clint Boisdeau in the ABF Motoring MINI Cooper S was looking like the man to beat in the wet but Sean Mackenzie pulled together a 2:17.356 lap toward the end of the day to claim the overall Street Tire, and Street Tire AWD class titles in his Mitsubishi Evo IX. Mike Butler came in a distant 2nd with a 2:33.358 and Cameron Benner rounded out the Street Tire AWD podium in 3rdafter battling intake issues with a 2:44.429 in the COBB Tuning Subaru STI.
Mike Bonanni found himself on the top step of the Street Tire RWD podium for the second event in a row, but this time it was not in the Berk Technology BMW 135i that he has piloted all season long. Unfortunately the Berk Technology 135i suffered electrical issues and couldn’t make the event so Bonanni drove his personal, bone stock Nissan 370Z to a Street Tire RWD class win with a 2:26.548 which proved that rain is the great equalizer between stock and modified cars. Ethan Boyles came in 2nd in Street Tire RWD with a 2:39.048 in his Honda S2000 while Dave Lemon piloted his new turbocharged Mazdatrix Mazda RX-8 to a 3rd place finish and a 2:39.724 lap.
Clint Boisdeau once again took 1st place in the Street Tire FWD class leaving him with just one more event to win for a perfect season. Boisdeau piloted the ABF Motoring MINI Cooper S to a blistering 2:19.094 ahead of the ENA Motorsports Acura Integra driven by Eric Emmerson with a 2:22.434 for 2nd. Kaimana Holokahi rounded out the Street Tire FWD podium in 3rd with a 2:31.276.
Michele Abbate was also looking un-stoppable in her ABF Motoring MINI Cooper S during Enthusiast Class practice, but Yang “The Animal” Tang pulled a flying lap out when it counted in his Mitsubishi Evo IX taking the Overall Enthusiast and Enthusiast AWD class wins with a 2:18.940. Tang ran un-opposed in the Enthusiast AWD class. Paul Dentice is also continuing a dominant season in the Enthusiast RWD class proving that wet or dry, he is un-stoppable. Dentice drove his AE Performance Nissan 370Z to a 2:21.904 for the Enthusiast RWD win over 13 seconds ahead of Kazuyuki Saegusa who came in 2nd with a 2:35.667. Charles Boyles rounded out the Enthusiast RWD podium in his Nissan 350Z Nismo with a 2:36.629 for 3rd.
Michele Abbate may have been denied the overall Enthusiast Class win, but that didn’t stop her from taking the Enthusiast FWD class win with a 2:22.316 in her ABF Motoring MINI Cooper S. The youngest man in time attack, Christopher Billedo drove his Speed Zone Motorsports Honda Civic Si to a 2nd place finish in Enthusiast FWD running a 2:26.939 lap time followed by Palmer Sanderson in 3rd with a 2:29.051.
The Drift Class drivers were without a doubt fun to watch as it was clear that they were pretty comfortable going sideways. It was a close battle in the wet, but Kyle Mohan in the Nexen Tire / Spyder Energy Mazda RX-7 took top honors with a 2:32.815 lap time, just 1.225 seconds ahead of Adam Knapik in his Nissan 240SX.
Everyone in attendance was anxiously awaiting the 5-lap Super Session sprint race at the end of the day. The track was far from dry, but better than it had been during the earlier time attack sessions. Representing the Super Modified Class was Jeff Westphal in the GST Motorsports Subaru Impreza L and Brandon Davis in the ACS SPEED World Challenge Mustang. Representing Modified Class was Dave Brown in the WORKS Mitsubishi Evo X, Brian Lock in the COBB Tuning R35 GTR, Carl Rydquist in the Hankook / City Tire Nissan 350Z, Jeremy Renshaw in the AFI Turbo Honda S2000, and Nick Cahill in his Mazda Miata. Dave Lemon in the Mazdatrix Mazda RX-8 was the sole Street Tire Class representative. AFI Turbo broke a transmission in their last time attack and just barely got the car back together in time for the Super Session, unfortunately they were just a minute too late and had to start the race from the pit lane.
The green flag dropped for the rest of the group and the GST Motorsports Impreza L was off and running putting a huge gap on the rest of the field in just a few turns. With the improved track conditions, everyone was going a good bit faster including the Jeff Westphal in the GST Motorsports Impreza L who shattered his time attack session time with a 1:53.455 lap during the sprint race! After the checkered flag flew, the GST Motorsports Impreza had lapped two cars in just 5 laps to win. Dave Brown in the WORKS Evo X battled with Brandon Davis and Brian Lock for a while before getting past and pulling away from them both taking 2ndplace overall and 1st place for Modified. The battle for 3rd was epic between Brian Lock in the COBB Tuning R35 GTR and Brandon Davis in the ACS SPEED World Challenge Mustang and it is incredible that no paint was swapped between them in the wet conditions. Brandon Davis took the 3rd place position over Lock by less than a car length. Another epic battle was brewing for 4th between Carl Rydquist and Jeremy Renshaw. The two were all over each other, but Rydquist was able to hold off Renshaw in the AFI Turbo Honda S2000 to take the position. Nick Cahill and Dave Lemon brought up the rear.
With 9 events now in the books for the 2010 Redline Time Attack season, all we have left is the season finale scheduled for November 12-14th where competitors will return to the high banking and technical infield known as Auto Club Speedway! You will surely not want to miss this event as records will be broken and champions will be crowned!

Seems like the boys from the Subaru Rally Team America have been very busy with the new Rally Car series that have been going on the East Coast. During the second round of the series, Dave Mirra has been able to capture his second podium win!

Subaru Rally Team USA Team Driver, Dave Mirra, Captures Second Rallycross Championship Podium Finish

Cherry Hill, N.J., October 4, 2010 – Subaru of America, Inc. – Rain added an additional element to this weekend’s Rallycross competition at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, NJ. With limited visibility, a red flag restart and his team member, Travis Pastrana out with complications with his car, Dave Mirra was still able to finish second in the A Main All-Wheel-Drive Class in his Subaru WRX STI.

“In rally you race in all conditions, rain or shine,” said Mirra “I am pumped to be on the podium for a second time and equally as excited to have moved up a position. I would like to thank the fans that came out and stood in the rain to show their support, without them we would not be here.”

Throughout the weekend Mirra held consistent results during the practice and qualifying rounds. Coming into the finals he was positioned second on the starting grid. Mirra took an early lead in the A Main and had completed two laps when competitor Liam Doran crashed into the tire barrier at turn two and the course had to be red flagged to reset the safety wall. After the restart Mirra fought off Liam Doran and three-time European Rallycross Champion, Jussi Pinomaki to finish second behind Tanner Faust, his highest rally car career finish ever.

Newly sanctioned by RallyCar (formerly Rally America), this all-new race series combines the action of circuit racing, off-road racing and rally competition into one exciting race. Developed from the European Rallycross, drivers line up to start all at once, piloting high-horsepower compact cars through race traffic over a challenging short course that features jumps, unbanked turns, hills and transitions between pavement, gravel and dirt.

Race finishing positions for the all-wheel drive class were as follows:
1. #34 Tanner Faust
2. #40 Dave Mirra
3. #3 Liam Doran
4. #9 Jussi Pinomaki
5. #465 Rhys Millen
6. #70 Chris Duplessis

Well, only a couple of days ago, the Autoblog crew spotted Travis Pastrana at Mt. Washington with a camera crew. There was speculation that Travis was there to break the Hill Climb Record of 6:42.xxx and guess what? He did with his 2011 STi! Our friends at Dirty Impreza posted this great article up!

Travis Pastrana Sets Fastest Time in Automobile Up Notorious Mt. Washington

The 149-year-old Mt. Washington Auto Road has seen the likes of horses and carriages, camels, people, bicycles and most famously, competition race cars. Yesterday, traveling at an average speed of nearly 72 miles per hour in a Vermont SportsCar prepared, BFGoodrich Tires-shod 2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI rally car, four-time Rally America National Champion Travis Pastrana made sure the project name, Red Bull Speed Chasers, lived up to its name. He reached the summit faster than anyone else in history by clocking an officially timed run of 6 minutes 20.47 seconds, besting the previous record by more than twenty seconds. Amazingly, Pastrana achieved the impressive time on his first ever high-speed run to the summit. Pastrana has effectively thrown down the gauntlet in advance of the legendary Mt. Washington “Climb to the Clouds” Automobile Hillclimb, which will take place in 2011 after a 10-year hiatus.

The 7.6-mile-long Mt. Washington Auto Road is one of the ultimate challenges for driver and automobile, the serpentine tarmac and gravel road is lined with trees and dangerous drop-offs above the mountain’s tree line as it winds its way to the 6,288 foot summit of the Northeast’s tallest peak. The road, which features more than 100 turns, is mostly paved but features a technical dirt section that is approximately one mile long. The road climbs 4,618 ft from an altitude of 1,527 ft with an average gradient of 11.6%.

Pastrana was up to the challenge, and on his first attempt was able to set his fast time, besting “Climb to the Clouds” Hillclimb record holder Frank Sprongl’s time of 6 minutes 41.99 seconds, set in 1998. Pastrana attempted three more runs but each time he was slowed by near zero visibility conditions at near the summit, as low rain clouds inundated the area. Pastrana’s test session was officially sanctioned by RallyCar (formerly Rally America).

“This is an amazing road, it’s just so much fun,” said Pastrana, who last New Year’s Eve, set the world record for distance jumping in a car at 269 feet. “It’s extremely challenging, there is no room for error and the scenery is epic. The Mt. Washington Auto Road has some amazing history to it.”

Pastrana, with his Vermont SportsCar team, as well as officials from the Mt. Washington Auto Road, conducted the Red Bull Speed Chasers test session to evaluate the road conditions ahead of the 2011 Climb to the Clouds, which will make a return June 22-26, 2011 as part of the 150th anniversary of the Mt. Washington Auto Road.

Pastrana teamed with veteran co-driver Marshall Clarke of Ireland on his runs to the summit. The duo spent Tuesday familiarizing themselves with the auto road in a street car at legal roads speeds and made detailed stage notes, the same process used for stage rally competition. Both Pastrana and Clarke had never driven the Mt. Washington Auto Road before, and thus the detailed notes played a key role in the at-speed attempt the following day.

The Mt. Washington Auto Road was completed in 1861 and is the oldest man-made attraction in North America. Considered one of the oldest motorsports events in the United States, the Climb to the Clouds was first run in 1904, with a winning time of 24 minutes 37 seconds, seven years before the first 500-mile race at the Brickyard in Indianapolis and twelve years prior to the inaugural Pikes Peak Hillclimb in Colorado.
The Climb to the Clouds was then run sporadically until 1961, making a comeback in the 1990’s. The last time the Climb to the Clouds ran was in 2001 on a shortened course due to severe weather. In fact, the highest-recorded wind speed in the United States – an incredible 231 miles per hour – was on Mt. Washington in 1934.

“Travis’ run was incredibly thrilling on a number of fronts,” said Howie Wemyss, General Manager of the Mt. Washington Auto Road. “It’s amazing that he was able to drive that car to the summit in 6:20, and all the more so when you realize that he and his co-driver had just seen the Auto Road for the first time the day before, and the top quarter-mile was in thick fog! Our racing heritage here at the Auto Road runs deep, having started in 1904 and now Travis is part of that heritage as the fastest person to the summit by automobile.”

Congrats to Travis Pastrana for going out there and yet again putting Subarus on the map!!!!

Source: Dirty Impreza

Again, my friends at Live Sockets hook it up with an amazing video from a Rally School in Washington State. They’re called DirtFish and they use Subarus!!!!

Now if you think these are your run-of-the-mill Subarus, you are mistaken, my friend! These are legit rally cars prepped by Vermont Sports Car that ALSO built the Subaru Really Team USA’s Rally cars! Fully safe and up to spec!

Being in a 1 day course can run you around $1,150.00 (with an introductory price of $895) but that’s not bad since you don’t have to risk hurting your own car, have a professional driving instructor sitting shot gun with you, and you get to learn as much as you can. I think I know what I’m going to ask for my Birthday.

Visit their website! DirtFish

As usual, my good friends at Live Sockets Entertainment provides me with great news about rally! I found this press release about Rally car and I figured I’d share this with you guys!

First American Rallycross Event A Success!

Millville, NJ (August 29, 2010) — RallyCar’s inaugural U.S. Rallycross held at the New Jersey Motorsports Park was a successful event where the competition was fierce and thousands of fans cheered the intense action. Rallycross racing has finally arrived and made a lasting impression!

The highlight of the Rallycross event was the dramatic A Main Final, where Rockstar Energy Drink’s Tanner Foust driving a 2010 Ford Fiesta won the inaugural event in the 4WD Class. Josh Wimpey hailing from Steeles Tavern, VA won the 2WD Class in a 1987 Volkswagen GTi rally car.

Foust was challenged by Ramana Lagemann (2008 Ford Fiesta), the Subaru Rally Team USA duo of Travis Pastrana and Dave Mirra, NOS Energy Drink’s Andrew Comrie-Picard (ACP), and 2010 Rally America 2WD champion Chris Duplessis (2004 Subaru STI). During the A Main, Travis Pastrana lost control of his car and almost flipped it by running over water barriers in front of spectators on the first lap. Pastrana’s incident caused the final race to get red flagged, forcing an A Main restart. Pastrana was allowed to restart the A Main, but was positioned in the back of the grid and fought to win second place overall. Dave Mirra secured third place after battling with both Pastrana and ACP. Chris Duplessis did not finish the race after he spun during the restart and bent his car’s steering rack.
Foust’s win follows a string of victories, including winning gold medals in both Rally Car Racing and the SuperRally at this year’s X Games 16. Foust now lays claim to winning America’s first-ever Rallycross. “The American event was great!” exclaimed Tanner Foust, “The Ford Fiesta was built specifically for Rallycross and it performed extremely well.”
In the 2WD Class A Main final, Josh Wimpey built a significant lead over second place winner Wyatt Knox and third place finisher Randy Zimmer. 18 year-old and 2009 Rally America 2WD National Champion, Dillon Van Way, looked strong in his first three heat races leading up to the final event, but he made hard contact in the dirt with Knox and spun out at the end of the straightaway after breaking a wheel shaft.The weekend was bittersweet for newly crowned 2010 Rally America “Rookie of the Year” Joseph Burke, who suffered a broken gear shift cable and slid off the course in Heat 2, furthering his frustrations with weekend-long brake problems. Burke was towed off the course and had to retire from the Rallycross with a blown turbo.

Ex-factory Subaru Rally Team USA driver, Ramana Lagemann, showed remarkable promise on this weekend’s event behind the wheel of an MSE Olsbergs prepared Rallycross 2008 Ford Fiesta. It was Lagemann’s first outing in this car with no prior testing, so you can expect he will become a regular threat in the Main events in RallyCar’s upcoming events.

The first event of RallyCar’s 2010 U.S. Rallycross Championship goes down as a significant moment in American motorsports history. Spectators, competitors, the track, and sponsors were pleased with how this first Rallycross unfolded and the exciting outcome of the weekend.

“This is an excellent racing format and I see so many excited spectators,” said NOS Energy Drink’s Andrew Comrie-Picard, “and the cool thing is seeing so many excited drivers. You could see it when Dave Mirra and I immediately caught up with each after our Heat race to discuss what happened out there!”

Travis Pastrana acknowledged the enthusiasm the crowd’s intense enthusiasm, “I could literally hear the fans cheering from inside my car!”

Over the weekend, a total of 23 Rally and racecar drivers from various disciplines challenged the 1.3 mile Lightning Racetrack, modified to include three dirt sections and “Joker” lap section. Each car must take a “Joker” lap once at some point during their Heat races. A Joker Lap is a small detour – normally over a jump – that adds a level of unpredictability to the heat’s outcome by changing a driver’s strategy in an instant.

RallyCar’s U.S. Rallycross Championship returns to the New Jersey Motorsports Park for the second round of three events in 2010. Join us in Millville to witness this new, exciting, and highly unpredictable form of racing on October 2-3 and again on November 6-7. Tickets are available at:http://store.njmp.com/store/category/9/157/

Throughout the weekend RallyCar distributed exclusive driver interviews and action videos. You can review the videos at: http://www.rally-america.com/events/2010/NJMPRC1/gallery/

Heat and Main event results can be found at: http://www.rally-america.com/events/2010/NJMPRC1/news/

About RallyCar, Inc.

Based in Golden Valley, Minn., RallyCar sanctions the premier performance rally series in the United States, the Rally America National Championship Series. In 2010, RallyCar is conducting six National Championship events at venues across the country, from Olympia, Washington to Newry, Maine. RallyCar competitors reach speeds of well over 100 mph in modified street cars on natural-terrain courses consisting of gravel, dirt or snow. Additionally, through a partnership with ESPN, qualifying RallyCar drivers are invited to compete in ESPN’s Summer X Games 16, the annual leading action-sports event that’s broadcast live on ESPN. For more information, be sure to visitwww.rally-america.com.

RallyCar is proudly supported by Subaru of America, Inc., BFGoodrich Tires, the Team O’Neil Rally School, Able Planet, Hawk Performance Brakes, Rally-Tire.com, RaceWatches.com, Exedy Racing Clutches, RECARO, Mazda and the Danza del Sol Winery.

About New Jersey Motorsports Park

Sitting on more than 500 acres in Millville, N.J., New Jersey Motorsports Park is nestled snugly in a beautifully forested region surrounded by scenic rivers and nearby Delaware Bay. Directly adjacent to Millville Municipal Airport, NJMP is conveniently located close to Philadelphia, the Jersey Shore, New York and Baltimore, offering diverse and dynamic motorsports attractions.

The well landscaped park includes two world-class road courses (Thunderbolt and Lightning), a motorsports country club known as the Drivers Club with the Finish Line Pub and Breighton Room Restaurant, which are open to the general public, and F1 New Jersey, one of the top karting facilities in America. Entering its third race season, NJMP hosts a number of professional motorsports events and countless club events and track and facility rentals.

I love hitting up our friends at Live Sockets Entertainment and their series of websites, including Apartment 107! They always have fresh info and news there. I saw that they put up an article about the recent Super GT Races in Japan and that Subaru came in with a win with their new Legacy B4 GT300 race car!

In the GT300 class the R&D SPORT LEGACY B4 (Tetsuya Yamano/ Kota Sasaki) emerged the winner. Starting from 11th position on the GT300 class grid, the team worked up steadily through the pack to and finally took the lead on a faster pit time in the last pit stop. This is a team that made its GT debut part way through last season and skipped round four of this season to make some major changes in the machine that led to this victory. For the team, its first podium finish of the season turned to be a victory.

It’s awesome that some time off and more R&D that this pretty crazy Legacy has been able to pull off an impressive win! More info on this car later!

Source: Apartment107