29th Apr2013

RaceCo Nissan GT-R

by Michael Chandler

Raceco GTR Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-1

Things change. Everything changes at some point. Mountains rise and erode away, civilizations are built and crumble, companies and people build cars and sell them. This Nissan GTR already had a full life before it came to RaceCo, and was transformed into the opus you see before you.

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The car was previously owned by Cobb Tuning, and eventually became a car they campaigned in the Redline Time Attack series. Unfortunately Redline folded and Cobb had a race car with nothing to race in. So they sold it to someone who brought it to RaceCo for some adjustments, and for a while it wore the livery it had at Cobb. At the end of last season that all changed.

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Visually the car has changed quite a bit. It was wearing the white and blue of Cobb Tuning, but now it is covered, thanks to Envision Wraps, in the primal primary colors: red, black and white. These colors elicit deep reactions from those who see them.

Carbon Fiber widebody GTR

The old fiberglass front end has been replaced with an AIT carbon fiber widebody, while the AIT fiberglass widebody rear end and sideskirts remain the same. RaceCo made some floating mounts for the front splitter, along rear diffuser strakes and skid plates for the splitter and side skirts. Other custom pieces include a flat floor, floor exit exhaust on the rear diffuser and front and rear Lexan windshields.

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Not everything can be custom made, so some off the shelf pieces were fitted: an XPR air jack system, an Aeromotions R2 static rear wing, APR carbon fiber mirrors, Aerocatch hood pins, and JDM front clear side markers and a Moonface front tow hook round out the off the shelf pieces on the exterior of the R35.

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Inside the cabin it’s all business. Aside from the automatic gear shifter that is. You have to climb over the custom roll cage before you can squeeze into the RaceTech 4009HR seat. A Schroth Hans six point harness holds you in the seat as you grip a Sparco steering wheel on a custom quick release. A Moty lightweight battery provides power, and a fire suppression system makes sure you don’t burn to a crisp. A MoTec ADL3 data system with a custom RaceCo wire harness and carbon fiber switch panel gathers information and provides easy access to all the necessary controls.

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Getting out is a matter of pulling on the custom door pull, un-doing the harness, taking of the wheel and climbing back over the roll cage.

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The car sits on CCW C10 wheels, 18×13 at all corners covered in equally large 310/710/18 Michelin S9H slicks.

Nissan GTR race car

Behind the custom CCWs sit Performance Racing rotors with Pagid RS29 brake pads, front and rear, and AP Racing J hooks. RaceCo fabbed up some stainless steel brake lines for the front while some Goodridge stainless brake lines are in the rear. The fluid of choice that allows the car to be hauled to a stop is SRF Racing brake fluid.

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The car sits nicely upon its JRZ triple adjustable coilovers and Hypercoil springs. MODE racing front and rear sway bars tie the sides of the car together. This WAS a Cobb car, and that car wasn’t too bad so a lot of the parts from its past are still there. Parts like the adjustable rear end links, prototype adjustable rear camber links and toe links.

GTR on air jacks

This properly set up suspension is complimented by the OS Giken differentials in the front and rear housings. The rear differential doesn’t see nearly as much airflow as the front so it gets a custom cooling system with a Mocal oil pump and air to air cooler. Both of the differentials are filled with OS-250R 80W-250 gear oil.

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The Cobb parts don’t end with the suspension. Cobb 3.5” intakes, ceramic coated downpipes, cat-less Y pipe and race exhaust, XLE bypass valves and secondary oil cooler kit are still on there. As is the AccessPORT that has been tuned on E85 and Speed Density by Tim Bailey of Cobb Tuning.

Nissan GTR R35 rolling

The engine is still the familiar VR38DETT, but things on both the inside and outside have changed. The stock turbos have been ditched in favor of Garret 2871’s with upgraded wastegate acutators. Dual Walbro in-tank fuel pumps send fuel to a pair of AMS fuel rails and on through a set of Injector Dynamics 2000cc fuel injectors. In between there and here is a custom surge tank with two Bosch 044 fuel pumps on it.

In the motor itself are forged rods and pistons, six HKS spark plugs, Motul oil and coolant. That coolant also flows through a Koyo radiator.

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Now this is a race car, but it has something a lot of race cars don’t have: an automatic transmission. Albeit a ShepTrans stage 3 transmission with PPG 1st-6th gears and a Dodson billet clutch housing, but you can still pop that thing in D. But you wouldn’t. You’d put it in R mode so you can make use of all the parts that have been lovingly bolted to the car. Parts like the Dodson pressure sensor controller, Cobb Tuning transmission oil pump, and custom stage 2 transmission oil cooler system (with Mocal Laminova and air to air cooler). Since this transmission is in the back of the car, the car has NACA ducts and carbon fiber inline fans to cool its and the rear differential coolers.

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Change is a constant. Never stopping for anything. Change can at times be scary, because what comes after the change could be something terrible. Especially if the thing that is being changed is something thats known to be good However, change can take something good and propel it to greatness.

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Words by Michael Chandler and Photos by Michael Chandler and Trent Bray

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners. Images and words may not be re-posted, re-distributed, modified, or copied without expressed written consent from CAMAutoMag.Com.
26th Apr2013

Just a little teaser

by Michael Chandler

Race Co GTR April 3 2013 Michael Chandler-33

It’s going to be a busy weekend for us.  There’s the D-Spare drift demo tonight at Rocky Mountain Raceways form 6pm until 9pm, the iDrift event tomorrow at Miller Motorsports Park from 7am til 4pm, and there’s the Import Spring Showoff presented by UtahHondas.net on Sunday at the Davis County Fairgrounds from 4:30pm til 7:30pm.  Lots going on…

But in the meantime, here’s a teaser from our upcoming feature on the RaceCo built, carbon fiber wide body Nissan GT-R.  Full feature is coming next week.

Words and photos by Michael Chandler

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners. Images and words may not be re-posted, re-distributed, modified, or copied without expressed written consent from CAMAutoMag.Com.

 

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23rd Apr2013

NASA Racing April 20

by Michael Chandler

NASA Racing 4-20-13 Michael Chandler CAMautoMag-29

It wasn’t the most ideal day for racing: It rained.  It hailed.  It was cold and miserable for a while.  Not everyone had rain tires.  But eventually it did dry up, warm up, and nobody (that I saw or heard about) had a serious wreck.  It ended up being a good Saturday.

 

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The TurboLabs S2000 had some issues with Clubhouse in qualifying.

 

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HPDE Groups 1 and 2 got to run in the rain.  For some this was a bit hairier than it was for others.

 

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A legitimate Aplina B9 was out running.  Might not have been the best tool for the job, but it might have been the prettiest.

 

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This LS7 powered SLP Camaro made the trip down from Idaho, making it the second fourth generation Camaro to race this season!

 

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Sally broke her transmission during the first TT session.  We were all a little saddened.  Being unable to race left her plenty of time to instruct Megan and give me the peace sign!

There was more.  Much more.  Too much to jam into a post here, so we dumped the photos into a MASSIVE Facebook album for you to enjoy.  The next event is May 3-5 on the outer loop.  Head over to NASAUtah.com to see the full schedule and to register.

 

Words and Photos by Michael Chandler

*Article and Photos are copyright of CAMAutoMag.Com and their respective owners. Images and words may not be re-posted, re-distributed, modified, or copied without expressed written consent from CAMAutoMag.Com.

 

11th Apr2013

The Miller Motorsports Park Total Performance Museum

by Trent

Ford GT40 MkIV

Epic [ep-ik]
heroic; majestic; impressively great

The Iliad and Odyssey are epic poems, the Nurbugring is an epic track, LeBron James is an epic player. Epic is a small word that carries a vast amount of weight. People throw it around frivolously, but there are some things we can all agree are fitting of the title of Epic. Submitted for your approval:

Larry H. Miller Museum

The Miller Total Performance Automotive Museum

On the south side of the entry fence at Miller Motorsports Park, across the drive from the box office building, sits a building that has a giant track map and picture of one of the FR500Ss. Inside this building there are some of the things you’d run across at a motorsports facility that hosts driving and racing schools: there is a class room, and some bathrooms, and a gift shop; however, if you walk past the register in the gift shop you will find something few other places have: a collection of cars that have become legends.

Shelby Cobra Carbs

This is like Valhalla. These heroes sit amongst each other, in a hall built by a man who lives on through the legacy and places he left behind.

Shelby Daytona Coupe

Before Larry Miller became Larry H. Miller, philanthropist, Utah Jazz owner, car dealership magnate, he was Larry Miller, car guy. Specifically, Shelby Cobra guy. He worked hard, and bought a Cobra. And he worked some more and bought another…and some more, and then some Mustangs, and a GT40, and then more Cobras and GT40s. All told there are 13 Cobras (including one of the six Daytona Coupes AND a one of one aluminum body that was going to become a Daytona Super Coupe), 5 GT40s, 6 GT350 Mustangs, and one Cougar, Ranchero, Thunderbolt, 2008 GT500KR, and a Ford GT. These 29 cars represent 50 years of American racing history and one man who made the world take note of what we were capable of: Carroll Shelby. Telling the stories of all the cars, of all the men behind them, and everything that they accomplished would require a novel on the scale of Ulysses. We will highlight a few of the cars, and leave it up to you if you want to make the drive to the museum and hear about the rest of them.

Hey Little Cobra

CSX-2128: Black No. 15 This is the car that started it all. This was one of two Cobras built for the 1963 Twelve Hours of Sebring with rack and pinion steering. The Shelby team raced it for a few months, then sold it to Coventry Motors. While there it received a new livery (yellow with black stripes and roundels) and was raced until Shelby bought the car back in March of ’64. While with Coventry, and before the new livery, it was photographed for an album by the Rip Chords called Hey Little Cobra. Larry saw this album, saw the car, and became a Cobra guy. Later the car came up for auction, and Larry outbid the man who designed the yellow and black livery it wore at Coventry. The man Larry outbid, the livery designer, was George Lucas.

Shelby Daytona Coupe

CSX-2299: Blue No. 13 Daytona Coupe “It just stops my heart every time I see it.” This is one of six Daytona Coupes, number two, and it has one of the more storied histories in the museum: first in GT/fourth overall at the 1964 Le Mans, first in GT/fourth overall at Tourist Trophy in 1964, first in GT/SECOND overall 1965 24 Hours of Daytona, first in GT/fourth overall 1965 12 Hours of Sebring. It helped Shelby become the first, and only, American manufacturer to win a FIA GT World Manufacturer’s Championship.

Number 1 Ford GT40

P-1015: Blue with White stripes No. 1 This car won overall at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans. Co-driven by Ken Miles and Lloyd Ruby, it crossed the line first in the famous Photo Finish the Ford executives ordered. Despite crossing the line first, the race officials deemed that the No. 2 GT40 (co-driven by Bruce McLaren and Chris Amon) covered the most distance and was awarded the win. This questionable decision robbed Ken Miles of the Triple Crown of Endurance Racing (wins at Daytona, Sebring an Le Mans). Sadly Ken was never able to make another attempt at the Triple Crown. He was killed that summer testing a prototype Mk IV GT40.

Steve McQueen GT40

P-1074: Gulf Blue with Marigold stripes No. 40. The infamous Steve McQueen car. Most people know about this car because it was purchased for an obscene amount of money last year, and it was owned by Steve McQueen, who turned it into a camera car for the film Le Mans. What most people don’t know is that it was one of the first cars to ever wear the Gulf Oil colors. It was one of three Mirage prototypes made from existing GT40 chassis. It won in its debut outing at Spa-Francorchamps in May of 1967, which was the first win for any car wearing the now famous blue with marigold stripes.

Ford GT40 MkIV

There are still twenty-five cars in there with histories of their own. I urge you, implore you, to make the drive out to the track. Visit the museum. Learn more about these cars that put America, for a brief period of time, at the forefront of international racing. Learn more about the man who built these pieces of history. Learn more about the man who acquired these cars and put them on display for all to see. Being able to see one of these cars in person is amazing, a few of them is awe inspiring, but twenty-nine? That can be only described as Epic.

No 12 Ford GT40Shelby Daytona Coupe Le Mans

Two Le Mans GT40's

Words by Michael Chandler and John Gardner, Photos by Michael Chandler and Trent Bray, Video by Trent Bray

Special thanks to John Gardner and Miller Motorsports Park

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