Last week Global Time Attack traveled to Texas Motor Speedway for Round 5 of the series. With the middle of the year lacking in West Coast events, we decided to pack up the team and head down to the state where building signs are the size of trucks and sweet tea flows like water. Now, anyone who has ever driven through Texas knows that once you hit the border, to be prepared for endless hours of zero scenery. Regardless, Wednesday after the shop closed, we loaded up the trucks and trailers and set off for Fort Worth Texas. The plan was to drive straight through until we hit the track and that we did. About 16 hours later we found ourselves on the infield paddock of the gigantic Texas Motor Speedway. After unloading the cars and making a few laps on the pit bike we headed in search of food and sleep.
As with all Global Time Attack events drivers are split into A and B groups. B Group drivers would start the day Saturday and break the track in. Markos Mylonas, new to the Enthusiast AWD class and special guest Dale “Bauce of the Sauce” Barnes in Enthusiast RWD were first up from the team to head out on track. Normal configurations of this track include the roval however for this event the 1.3 mile 8 turn track would be utilized. In true Noah Levy fashion I threw my arm out and began taking times. In his first few laps Markos was turning mid 43 second lap times which with nothing to reference we had to assume left room for improvement. Next up to run was the A group. Travis Barnes and myself strapped in and went out on the benchmark of Mylonas’ 43 second time to see how the classes would space themselves. Travis had a relatively easy session while I found myself off in the dirt in my second lap. Combined with a burst PCV line and oil everywhere I came off track with some repair needed. A quick trip to the parts store had the car fixed up and ready for the next session.
Friday Ended with most times stacked right in the 40-42 second mark for multiple classes. Each of the team’s drivers had some improving to do on Saturday. Both Markos and myself found ourselves within tenths of a second with the Evo’s from Evolution Dynamics in our respective Enthusiast and Street Classes. Travis was sitting in 2nd place Unlimited AWD with time to cut on track. Special guest Dale Barnes was sitting in the 50’s and looking to improve his time. Considering he has never been on track before, let alone in his 2011 Ford Mustang with a few Whiteline compliments this was not bad at all.
Saturday was the last day to make magic happen. The team continued bettering their times throughout the day. Markos’ chase behind the Evolution Dynamics Evo X was proving more difficult than he thought. Every time Markos improved; ED found a way to do just the same. Curious to the cars full potential, Travis handed the keys to the Snail Racer to Jeff Westphal, driver of the GST Motorsports Impreza L. Travis then used the data provided to improve a few seconds off his time. Unfortunately by this time Tony “Hawt Kawk Sriacha” Szirka from UMS Tuning had worked out all the bugs in his EVO, including installing a new oil pump, water pump, and gear shift linkage repair. His times were extremely competitive in the recently revamped EVO VIII and Travis was unable to match his times. After watching in car video of Westphal in the Snail Racer I found a few placed to improve my own times. In the afternoon session I set out to improve my times further. Despite a number of “unofficial” times my transponder died on track and I had no data for the session. Dale also continued to improve and dropped his times in the 49’s.
When the final session presented itself, each of us on the Snail team were out to secure our finishes. Dale Barnes deciding to do one last session for “fun” and trimmed a solid 3 seconds from his time to secure 3rd Place Enthusiast RWD. Markos continuing to chase the Evolution Dynamics EVO narrowly missed his success and a tenth of a second would mean 2nd place Enthusiast AWD. Equipped with two transponders so as not to miss my times once again, I went out and secured a 40 second lap good for 1st place Street AWD. Travis went out and gave it all he had but was unable to match the sheer power of the UMS Tuning EVO and finished 3rd Place Unlimited AWD. In the end it was four of four Snail cars with podium finishes and champagne in hand. Each of the cars drove back onto their trailers and are ready for the next event which we will call a success.
With Global Time Attack Round 5 over, the trek back west began which meant GTA Afterhours Truck Attack was to begin. With Snail, UMS, and GST we had 5 Trucks hauling back west. That is until GST ran out of gas and the UMS tow rig became unhappy. Musical trailers occurred on the side of the road and we were back on the road. 20 hours later we arrived back in Arizona with only hours before each of us had to open the doors to our shops. Mike Warfield in his Australian English British something confusion decided to keep driving on to California.
We want to thank everyone that continues to support the Snail Performance Team. Thanks to Whiteline Flatout for providing the best in grip activating suspension components. Turbosmart USA maintains all the teams boost needs. LIC Motorsports is the go to for analysis and suspension perfection, along with supplying some of the best Subaru Specific components on the market. Wheeldude.com makes sure the team rolls in style with the latest shoes for each car. Finally, we welcome Turbos Direct for building and supplying the team with the best turbos on the market.
Next up for the team is the Global Time Attack Season Finale at Buttonwillow Raceway Park in Bakersfield California. We only have a few busy weeks before the event. Until then, be sure to stay up to date with all of the coverage from Global Time Attack Texas found online.