Unlimited Class is where the shops, race teams, and manufacturers go to see who can set the fastest overall lap time, with very few rules- basically, it has to be a car with a vin number (no track day specials like a radical), and depending on the event you may have to use a DOT approved tire. Way back in 2007 Nob Taniguchi took the HKS EVO out for a 1:43.523, which really kicked off the unlimited class arms race. Sierra Sierra Enterprises built their EVO and Factor X upgraded the NSX with the goal of re-taking the record. SSE finally beat that time in 2010 (1:41.046), only to have it taken away by Factor X the next year. FXMD is the current overall record holder, with a time of 1:37.520 they set last year. Right now I’d say there are very few cars capable of beating that time, and most of them are overseas. Well, that’s enough history for now, here’s what happened this year:
In FWD, Dai Yoshihara took the Spoon Sports Civic to a 1:48.016, a time second only to Chris Rado’s ridiculous front-winged Scion tC, and also the only other FWD car to go sub- 1:50.
The Factor X NSX was absent, instead opting to wait until next month to try to better their record. In RWD, the speed of that car has been unmatched since 2008, when it was edged out at SLB by the JIC Magic Porsche and C-West S2000. This year, Andrie Hartanto won the event with a respectable 1:48.941, which puts him 8th on the list of fastest RWD time attack cars. 2nd place went to Stephanie Cemo with a 1:50.9 in her ZR1 Corvette, making her the fastest woman in time attack.
GST Motorsports has historically had pretty bad luck at Superlap. Last time out, the engine blew up on the first lap and set the car on fire. The year before they only managed a 1:46.6 due to other issues, and until this year their best time in competition was 1:44.5 at SLB 2010. At that event, Sierra Sierra finally knocked the HKS EVO off the top spot, and Factor X went out in the last session to try to take the overall win only to burst into flames just before the last corner. It was an exciting day.
This year, things finally came together for GST. In the last session Jeff Westphal, who had already set the Limited AWD record that day, did a lap in 1:38.967, making them the 2nd time attack car to ever go under 1:40. 2nd place was Cole Powerson in the Lyfe GTR (previously the Cobb/GOTO GTR), who also managed to better the old SSE time with a 1:40.417.
Full unlimited class results:
1 – 1:48.016 – Dai Yoshihara – Spoon Civic
2 – 1:53.404 – Joe De Vivo – Caliber Customs Fiat
3 – 1:59.163 – Jared Reyes – Eibach Civic
4 – 2:00.139 – Liam Downey – Romax Civic
5 – 2:03.156 – Craig Utter – JDM speedshop Civic
1 – 1:48.941 – Andrei Hartanto – Hartanto S2000
2 – 1:50.975 – Stephanie Cemo – Corvette ZR1
3 – 1:55.467 – Tom Tang – Tunerplayground Blacktrax S2000
4 – 1:58.299 – Jason Sharek – Essa C63
5 – 1:59.602 – Moti Almagor – Blackbird Miata
1 – 1:38.967 – Jeff Westphal – GST L
2 – 1:40.417 – Cole Powerson – Lyfe GTR
3 – 1:51.944 – Travis Barnes – Snail Performance Subaru
dnf – Tony Szirka – UMS Tuning Mitsubishi EVO
dnf – Conrad Grunewald – HSU Racing Mitsubishi EVO
dnf – Canaan O’Connell – RRE / Jet Black Racing EVO