Victor Reyes, Josh Mitchell, and I left RB Motoring at City of Industry with our new 75 foot race rig for SEMA on very late Sunday night - we arrived at the convention center early morning on Monday.
Sean Morris could not go with us as Universal's shooting of the Fast and the Furious 3 coincided with the first part of SEMA. He caught up with us in Las Vegas on Thursday, just in time for our very own party at Hotel Paris' Club Risque.
Josh Mitchell is now officially our head mechanic, and we are excited - his experience, ability, and discipline is unmatched. Josh will be moving down from Alaska to work with us full time shortly; he is also bringing his road-legal R32 GT-R down here as well.
We also spent time with Mr. Hiroshi Tamura, the Product Planner of the R34 Skyline GT-R and are extremely thankful for his interest and support of our motorsport efforts.
Following SEMA, we headed straight for Pahrump, NV for Modified Magazine's time attack. Most of the track was resurfaced a few days before the event and somehow the glue that is supposed to be between the layers of asphault was on top. One Lotus Elise actually burned down to the ground, while we saw dozens of cars go off track throughout the weekend. Due to such special conditions, we made a conscious decision for myself to go easy on the car irrelevant of the finishing time or place.
We ended up coming in 2nd place in the Unlimited AWD category, behind Kim Johnson's 600whp R34. Sticking with the projected World Challenge spec in terms of power and downforce in addition to the spec tire really put us at a disadvantage in both Time Attacks.
I ended up doing a what I believe to be a successful interview with Big-C from G4TV (we shall see how it turned out...) and Dustin from Teckademics made a point to drop by to shoot the car and myself.
From Pahrump, Sean, Josh, and Merritt left straight for Los Angeles while Victor and I went back to Las Vegas with the rig to drop off Thi Quack and my brother Vlad for their flights home - New Jersey and Kentucky, respecitvely.
Monday, Victor and I arrived in Los Angeles, and then the entire team departed North for Buttonwillow on the same day.
Again, our foremost objective here was to further familiarize ourselves with the car, to play with the setup, and to work on team dynamics, but we got plenty of bonuses -
Even before we were done setting up at the track, we got approached by ESPN2 and Speed channel, and we got coverage throughout the day - another welcome turn of events.
However, the Super Street Time Attack also gave us a chance to shine in term of performance as we posted a 1:57.3 lap time - the fastest of all cars on Toyo RA1 tires, even with our handicap of running our car in World Challenge series spec (very limited horsepower and downforce) , as we were surrounded by cars like 600whp carbon Lancer Evolution, 700whp R34 GT-R, and a full carbon Honda S2000, all driven by professional and seasoned race car drivers.
The support we got at SEMA and both of the time attacks was tremendous and we will do our best to exceed the expectations that have been put on us!
Sean and I agreed that all this was a chapter of its own that is now behind us, as we continue forward with our momentum for next year's Speed World Challenge.